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The Smith & Wesson’s Performance Center is producing the Model 327 TRR8. The “TRR” stands for “Tactical Rail Revolver”, and the “8” refers to the capacity. The gun is dull black, almost military looking.

This S&W M327 TRR8 is supplied with two rails. A short section of M1913 rail bolts onto the bottom of the barrel shroud ahead of the ejector rod housing. A longer section bolts into the top of the barrel shroud ahead of the frame. With the rails, good for adding lights, lasers and optics, the 8-shot capacity and it meets the description as a “Tactical Rail Revolver”.

The single-action trigger is short and light. The double-action stroke is quite smooth for a current S&W.

sw6.gifThe front sight can be changed. The one on our sample has a gold bead in the face. They had to have known this one was coming to me. I’m a huge fan of gold bead-faced Patridge front sights. The rear sight is the S&W micrometer adjustable rear. The 8-shot cylinder is made of stainless steel. The frame is made of a blended Scandium alloy. The barrel is a two-piece affair. The entire gun has a blackened finish, bead blasted to minimize glare.

The gun was shipped in the Performance Center metal briefcase. It was fitted with Hogue Monogrips of rubber. They have the S&W logo thereon. The rails and their mounting hardware are shipped not on the gun but in a bag. A pair of moon clips is provided as well. With a couple of spare clips, this gun is capable of a whole lot of shooting. The chamber charge holes are chamfered and the cylinder is cut to allow shooting Magnums that are in the en bloc 8-round moonclips.

The weight of the gun is in the barrel and cylinder. The whole gun weighs in at around 10 ounces less than the classic Model 27.

Sight Options
We received a Trijicon Red Dot sight with a mount that replaces the S&W rear sight. Using the scope mounting holes provided by S&W through the top strap under the sight, it was short work for Pete Rafferty of RMP Gunworks to attach and assemble mount and sight. Our Red Dot arrived nicely packaged in a Micro Case by Pelican. Just the thing to keep small electronics safe and dry, the Micro Case got the little sight to us in good shape.

It needn’t have bothered, the little Trijicon Red Dot is built for strength. From the hard coated acrylic lens that is literally more durable than glass equivalents, to the glass reinforced nylon polymer body that is stronger thansw7.gif aluminum, the Trijicon Red Dot Sight MS03 8.0 MOA is tough. A bright LED adjusts for brightness automatically.

As long as a battery is in it, it’s “on.” As the environment gets darker, the dot gets dimmer. In absolute darkness, like when the snap-on protective cover is attached, it dims to the point that the CR2032 battery gives it 17,000 hours of battery life, and can keep it powered up for 35,000 hours if its cover is properly used.

Built to mount atop Trijicon’s justifiably famous ACOG sights, the Red Dot has 1x magnification. Since it doesn’t have the 4x magnification of the ACOG, it’s perfect for mounting and shooting in close range engagements. This makes it ideal for an action revolver as well. Backed by a lifetime warranty, the Trijicon MS03 Red Dot is ready to go.

Also, a portion of the sale of each Trijicon product is spent in support of the Wounded Warrior Project and Disable Sports USA. They use sports rehabilitation to help our wounded troops recover and rebuild their lives. It’s a good cause. More information can be found on Trijicon’s website.

We had, but didn’t mount the Insight Technology M6 Illuminator-Laser. It’s a simple fit for the underslung mounting rail and can come in handy for target identification as well as aiming. I’ve used Insight Technology gear for some years and it’s top flight. I had a very short time to complete this report and was unable to arrange adverse light shooting at a law enforcement range.

We mounted the Crimson Trace LG-314 “HogHunter” Lasergrips. Rubber overmolded, these grips have thesw2.gif famous Crimson Trace Diode. If I were hunting hogs, some of whom are quite aggressive especially when shot, I think that the LG-314 is about the first thing I’d think of. I’d attach these grips, get them to zero at fairly close ranges and keep the batteries fresh. I’m too old to be climbing trees.

With the appropriate holster, I’d back the LG-314 up with the ITI M6 Illuminator-Laser. You can’t have too much in the light and aiming department when it’s a huge hog and tusks you’re facing.

Range Time
Based on time constraints, I had to pick the M327 up, get the sight installed and make the range on the same morning. I arrived with an assortment of .357 Mag ammo. It was partly cloudy, warm but not hot, and the wind was out of the south at 21 MPH. Being Kansas, it gusted to around 35 MPH, which meant it was difficult to keep targets still.

I shot with the Trijicon Red Dot Sight for a while, to get a feel for the gun. That gold bead front sight called out to me and I took the Trijicon off and reinstalled the S&W rear sight.

The M327 TRR8 has a very handy feel to it. The weight is wonderfully distributed and the way this gun handled .357 Mag ammunition made it the most comfortable .357 I’ve ever fired at any time in my life. It’s in no way abusive. The trademark torque that accompanies most .357s when fired with magnums was absent. I consumed around 200 rounds of .357 Mag ammo, not a round of which was light loaded. It was all full-power stuff. The softest shooting ammo of the test was CorBon DPX 125-grain.

sw31.gifI shot a quick accuracy test. I was seated, using a range bag on the bench to rest the gun hands over. Shooting at 25 yards with iron sights, Winchester 125-grain JHP Magnum ammo gave me a 2.75-inch group. The best three shot into 1.5 inches. The CorBon 125-grain DPX put five into 3 inches with three going into 1.75 inches. Black Hills 125-grain JHP, red box new manufacture Magnum ammo, crowded six bullets into 1.5 inches. Four of those rounds went into 0.75 of an inch. Looking at that tight cluster, I figured it was time to quit.

Final Notes
In the good old days, we had six-shooters and saps. The big debate was using adjustable sights over the gutter along the top strap and how one is tougher than the other. Now the big debate is over optics and lasers.

Now six-shooters are eight-guns, not sixguns. Nice touches like the gold bead front sight and the smooth-faced trigger and the “tear-drop” target hammer take me back to a younger age.

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