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5 Best Revolvers to Protect your Home

Best .22LR
Ruger GP-100. Image: Ruger.

5 Best Revolvers to Protect Your Home: Our Picks

We live in an unpredictable and unreliable world these days. Many factors of life are not what they used to be, and home security is a new or renewed concern for many. Part of any home security plan should include a reliable firearm, and few hold the reputation of reliability that belongs to the revolver.

While lacking the magazine capacity of most full-size semi-auto pistols, the venerable wheel gun is virtually impossible to jam and often chambered in powerful cartridges like the .357 Magnum that put plenty of energy on target. There are many good revolvers out there to protect your home. Here are my picks for the 5 best revolvers to protect any home based on my years of experience in the firearms industry.

Ruger LCRx 3”

5 Best Revolvers

Ruger LCR. Image: Ruger.

The big boy of the LCR family, the 3” barreled models provide a good sight radius for accurate shot placement while remaining short enough to maneuver in a tight spot. The weapon weighs in at under 16 ounces in 38 Special +P making it a viable carry gun for those who need a double-duty weapon.

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What Makes a Good Self-Defense Gun?

Chambered in .22LR, .22 Magnum, .38 Special, and .357 Magnum, this revolver provides an affordable “one gun” defensive solution for both in and out of the home. MSRP $579

Ruger GP-100

Ruger GP-100. Image: Ruger.

This well-built wheel gun will take on all comers. Chambered in .22 LR, .327 Federal, .357 Magnum, and .44 Special, the GP-100 can bring some serious power to the table. Available in a variety of barrel lengths, this revolver is an accurate weapon with enough weight (40 oz. in .357 magnum with a 4” barrel) to take some of the sting out of the magnum cartridges.

The additional weight lowers recoil, allowing for faster recovery between shots, meaning a quicker follow-up shop if needed. MSRP $769

Taurus 692

Taurus 692. Image: Taurus.

The Taurus 692 is a hefty medium frame revolver boasting a 7-round capacity in .357 magnum, and giving the option of 2.5”, 3”, or 6.5” ported barrels, the 692 is configurable to any need.

The ported barrel reduces muzzle rise & recoil, allowing you to regain your target quicker and put more rounds onto it if needed. As an added bonus the 692 is supplied with a conversion cylinder for 9mm Luger, allowing for a low recoil option and flexibility in the ammunition used, a major plus with today’s shortages. MSRP $652.50

Charter Arms Pitbull

Charter Arms Pitbull .45. Image: Charter Arms.

This compact powerhouse gives you five rounds of .45 ACP in a package the same size as a standard six-round .38 Special. (Compare to the semi-auto option).

The big-bore .45 cartridge excels as a man stopper with one-hundred and ten years of military pedigree to back it up. With less recoil and a lower cost per round than the .44 Special or .45 Long Colt, this revolver will handle home defense with aplomb, and unlike many .45 ACP revolvers, it does not require moon clips. MSRP $506.80 And if you live in the land of grizzlies and need more power than this, check out the .460 S&W.

Smith and Wesson Model 66

I know there are two other full size .357 magnum revolvers recommended here, but I could not leave this one out.

Long the gold standard for defensive revolvers, the Model 66 Combat Magnum has an enviable reputation for reliability and accuracy. In my personal experience, it also has the nicest trigger of the revolvers listed. Available in 2.75” and 4.25” barrels with an MSRP of $874, this .357 Magnum will provide some serious peace of mind in today’s uncertain world.

If you want the slicked-up version designed for tactical use, check out this review

Honorable Mention: Rock Island M200

For those with a pandemic depleted pocketbook, this budget revolver has built a reputation as a no-frills defensive weapon. Boasting a lifetime warranty and a rock-bottom price point, the Rock Island Armory M200 can fill the need for a “house gun” without emptying the pocketbook and not disappoint in performance. MSRP $275

Offering power and controllability, the revolver is no stranger to defensive use. Like any pistol they require practice, especially in the magnum calibers, however for those that chose to become proficient with them, the revolver provides a reliable and powerful solution for home defense. They were the defensive tool of choice 100 years ago and are still a relevant choice today.

Richard Douglas is a long-time shooter, outdoor enthusiast, and technologist. He is the founder and editor of Scopes Field, and a columnist at The National Interest, Cheaper Than Dirt, Daily Caller, and other publications.

Written By

Richard Douglas is a long-time shooter, outdoor enthusiast, and technologist. He is the founder and editor of Scopes Field, and a columnist at The National Interest, Cheaper Than Dirt, Daily Caller, and other publications.



  1. PopSeal

    January 24, 2021 at 9:39 am

    Three of five are cheap stinkers. Any .38/.357 S&W, Colt, or Ruger with a four or six inch barrel excellent choices. I like the S&W 686+ with that extra ‘hole in the cylinder’.
    Never go cheap….Buy the best you can get your hands on….No regrets then

    • Biff Malibu

      January 24, 2021 at 11:02 am

      I have all the revolvers mentioned in this article except the RIA. All are excellent weapons.

  2. Bill in Webster

    January 24, 2021 at 10:57 am

    REVOLVERS DO JAM! The only handguns I’ve ever had that jam up like their internal parts are welded together are revolvers (even though I keep them clean and adequately lubed). My brand new S&W .22 mag, with one particular kind of ammo, will seize up after about two cylinders of rounds. Nothing will move the cylinder or hammer until it’s cleaned. My brand new Ruger LCRx was jamming all the time until I tightened the front screw (which had been left loose by the factory). It worked great for a while, then something inside went wrong when I was practice firing with snap caps. Now it’s a paperweight until I get it to a gunsmith. My semi-autos have failed to fire or eject on occasion, but I’ve always been able to get them up and running quickly, unlike the two revolvers I mentioned. Might be better to stick with high-quality semi-autos for home defense.

  3. Steve Cornwell

    January 25, 2021 at 3:46 pm

    The Ruger GP100 is the only one on that list that would ever go home with me. What did Smith and Wesson do to this guy to make him so mad he promotes what I consider trash over any S&W product? The L-Frame S&W’s either 586 or 686 are arguably the best mass produced revolvers in .357 mag ever produced and they did not make his top 5? Unbelievable in my opinion. I have never written an article for a single media outlet but I have owned, shot and been a wheelgun fan for 40+ years and the only jam I have ever had was a very old Smith 38 spl when the nut on the end of the ejector rod loosened up. I fired all 6 rounds just fine but it wouldn’t open the cylinder for a reload until I tightened it up. I still have the pistol and after tightening that up over 10 years ago it has never given me any additional problems.

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