Smith & Wesson Model 686

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Smith & Wesson Model 686
S&W-686x2.jpg
Two Smith & Wesson Model 686s, with 8 and 6 inch barrels.
Type Revolver
Place of origin  United States
Service history
Used by See Users
Production history
Designed 1980
Variants 686P
686PP
686-(1-7)
Round Butt
Square Butt k-frame
Specifications
Weight 2 lb 12 oz (1.25 kg)
Length 12" (305 mm)
Barrel length 2-1/2 in. (64 mm)
3 in. (76mm)
4 in.(102 mm)
6 in. (153 mm)

Cartridge .357 Magnum
.38 Special
Caliber .38
Action double action
Rate of fire single
Feed system 6 or 7 round cylinder
Close-up of cylinder and extractor of the 686

The Smith & Wesson (S & W) Model 686, is a six or seven shot double action revolver chambered for the .357 Magnum cartridge. It will chamber and fire .38 Special cartridges, as the .357 Magnum was developed from the .38 Special. The magnum case is slightly longer to prevent magnum rounds from being chambered and fired in handguns chambered for the .38 Special. The 686 has been available with 2-1/2 in. (64 mm); 3 in.(76mm); 4 in. (102 mm); 5 in. (127 mm); 6 in. (153 mm); and 8-3/8 in. (214 mm) barrel lengths as standard models and other barrel lengths either by special order from S & W's Performance Center custom shop, or acquired from or built by after-market gunsmiths. The Performance Center made a limited number of 686 in .38 Super for competitive shooters.[1]

Photo of a Smith&Wesson 686 .38 Special, taken with an ultra high speed flash (air-gap flash).

Smith & Wesson introduced the Model 686 in 1980. It is the stainless steel version of the 586, which was a blued steel finish. It was chambered for .357 Magnum and .38 S&W Special +P calibers. They are available ported and unported with a choice of 6 or 7 round cylinders.[1]

The Model 686 is based on S & W's K/L (medium-large) revolver frame. During the 1980s, Smith & Wesson developed its K/L-Frame line of .357 Magnums: the Model 581, Model 586, Model 681 and Model 686.The Models 581 and 681 have fixed sights, whereas the 586 and 686 use adjustable sights.[2]

Variants of the 686[edit]

  • S&W Model 686 (US - Revolver - .357 Magnum & .38 Special: Distinguished Combat Magnum 6 shot cylinder, Stainless)
  • S&W Model 686P (US - Revolver - .357 Magnum & .38 Special: Distinguished Combat Magnum 7 shot cylinder, Stainless)
  • S&W Model 686PP (US - Revolver - .357 Magnum & .38 Special: Distinguished Combat Magnum Power Port 6 shot cylinder, Stainless)

The Model 686 has an adjustable rear sight, and until 1992, the 6- and 8-3/8-inch versions had the option of an adjustable front sight. They had Goncalo alves hardwood grips until 1994, when the grip was replaced by a rubber Hogue grip.[1]

Through the years, there have been several variations on the Model 686. The Model 686 Classic Hunter was introduced in 1988 and has a 6-inch barrel and an unfluted cylinder; the Model 686 Black Stainless was introduced in 1989 and has either a 4 or 6 inch barrel with a black finish, with production limited to 5000; the Model 686 National Security Special was introduced in 1992 and has a 3- or 4-inch barrel; the Model 686 Target Champion was introduced in 1992 and has a 6-inch match barrel, adjustable trigger stop, and walnut grips; the Model 686 Power Port was introduced in 1994 and has a ported 6-inch barrel; the Model 686 Plus was introduced in 1996 and has a 2.5-inch, 3 inch, 4-inch, or 6-inch barrel, adjustable sights, 7-shot cylinder, and Hogue rubber grips. As with all current Smith and Wesson revolvers, the 686 Plus now has a key lock integral to the frame of the gun.[1]

Variant Caliber Weight Capacity Year Notes
S&W 686 Classic Hunter

6" (15 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 45.8 oz (1.3 kg) 6 cyl 1988 unfluted cylinder
S&W 686-3 Midnight Black

4" & 6" (10 cm and 15 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 42 oz (1.19 kg) 6 cyl 1989 black finish over stainless, 5000 produced
S&W 686

2.5" (64 mm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 40.5 oz (1.15 kg) 6 cyl 1988
S&W 686

4" (10 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 42 oz (1.19 kg) 6 cyl 1988
S&W 686

6" (15 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 45.8 oz (1.3 kg) 6 cyl 1988
S&W 686

8-3/8" (21 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 48.3 oz (1.37 kg) 6 cyl 1988
S&W 686 CS-1 Made for United States Customs Service
S&W 686 National Security

3" (7.6 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 41.2 oz (1.17 kg) 6 cyl 1992 black finish
S&W 686 National Security

4" (10 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 42 oz (1.19 kg) 6 cyl 1992 black finish
S&W 686 Target Champion

6" (15 cm) match-grade barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 46.2 oz (1.31 kg) 6 cyl 1992 Full lug
S&W 686 Power Port

6" (15 cm) ported barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 46 oz (1.3 kg) 6 cyl 1994 Ported
S&W 686P

2.5" (6.4 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 41 oz (1.16 kg) 7 cyl 1996 lockable with key
S&W 686P

4" (10 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 42.3 oz (1.2 kg) 7 cyl 1996 lockable with key
S&W 686P

6" (15 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 46.2 oz (1.31 kg) 7 cyl 1996 lockable with key
S&W 686P

5" (12.7 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 40.5 oz (1.15 kg) 7 cyl 2004 Half-lug barrel, HiViz front sight
S&W 686 "The Presidents"

6" (15 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 46.2 oz (1.31 kg) 6 cyl 2003 brushed gold finish with finger hardwood grips
S&W 686PP

6" (15 cm) barrel

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 46.2 oz (1.31 kg) 6 cyl Integral Compensator, lockable with key
S&W 686 Performance Center

6" (15 cm) barrel (weighted)

.357 Magnum / .38 Special 52.9 oz (1.50 kg) 6 cyl 2007 Weighted Barrel, Weaver/Picatinny Rail on Barrel, Adjustable/Removable Weights, Ball-bearing Cylinder Lock, Forged Hammer and Trigger, Traditional Old School Pinned Sear, PC Aluminum Case or Gun Rug, lockable with key

Dash Numbers[edit]

  • 686 no dash, introduced model
  • 686-1, 1986, radius stud package, floating hand
  • 686-2, 1987, changed hammer nose, bushing and associated parts
  • 686-3, 1988, new yoke retention system
  • 686-4, 1993, change rear sight leaf, drill and tap frame, change extractor, hogue grips
  • 686-5, 1997, change frame design to eliminate cylinder stop stud, eliminate serrated tangs, change to MIM hammer with floating firing pin, change to MIM trigger, change internal lockwork
  • 686-6, 2001, internal lock

Gallery[edit]

Users[edit]

Recall[edit]

In 1987, seven years after the release of the Model 686, there were reports of cylinder binding with some types of standard .357 Magnum ammunition for L-frame revolvers manufactured before August 1987. S&W put out a product warning and authorized a no-charge upgrade to make modifications to the revolver [6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Supica, Jim; Richard Nahas (2007). Standard Catalog of Smith & Wesson (3 ed.). F+W Media, Inc. pp. 331–363. ISBN 978-0-89689-293-4. 
  2. ^ Boorman, Dean K. (2002). The History of Smith & Wesson Firearms. Globe Pequot. p. 119. ISBN 978-1-58574-721-4. 
  3. ^ Jim Supica (28 February 2011). Standard Catalog of Smith & Wesson 3rd. Iola, wisconsin: Gun Digest Books. pp. 343–. ISBN 978-1-4402-2700-4. Retrieved 29 May 2013. 
  4. ^ Chalker, Denny; Dockery, Kevin (13 October 2009). One Perfect Op. New York: Harper Collins. pp. 104–. ISBN 978-0-06-175129-5. Retrieved 29 May 2013. 
  5. ^ Sweeney, Patrick (28 February 2011). The Gun Digest Book of Smith & Wesson. Iola, Wisconsin: Gun Digest Books. pp. 104–. ISBN 978-1-4402-2714-1. Retrieved 29 May 2013. 
  6. ^ Product Warning, Popular Mechanics, January 1988, p. 11.

External links[edit]