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Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 5:37 pm
by RetNavy
just wondering if anyone has shot a Taurus "The Judge" revolver.... wife's nephew bought one yesterday chambered for .410 and .45LC... seems like it would be a fun weapon to fire....

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 5:55 pm
by Right2Carry
RetNavy wrote:just wondering if anyone has shot a Taurus "The Judge" revolver.... wife's nephew bought one yesterday chambered for .410 and .45LC... seems like it would be a fun weapon to fire....
We won one a few years back and it is fun to shoot but I consider it a conversation piece. I might use it for home defense loaded with critical defense 410 shells. The below video is awesome.

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Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 6:20 pm
by Richbirdhunter
Id imagine it would make a nice snake gun for the truck.

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 7:50 pm
by maintenanceguy
I bought one.

It's the spork of guns. Not really useful as a fork or a spoon...But it is a lot of fun to shoot.

The .45 colt option is much more accurate than I had imagined but it's far from a tack driver. I've owned some terrible handguns and this isn't one of them.

The .410 spreads so fast that it's useless at more than 15 yds. Up close, you'd blind an attacker if you didn't kill him. At 25 yds, you might just hit everything around him.

But what's really fun is shooting clays. We toss one almost straight up with the left hand and shoot it on it's way down.

I'm not suggesting that the judge is a serious gun that's really good for anything particular. There are better large caliber revolvers. There are better shotguns. There are better self defense options.

But, I haven't let anyone shoot it who didn't go away smiling.

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 9:29 pm
by Greybeard
To me, it's a "gimmick" gun. Just remember that birdshot is for birds (or snakes, if close enough). And the rifled barrel of that gun spreads birdshot even faster than a real shotgun. We have patterned lots of various loads out of em. Most of the personal defense stuff is "gimmick" loads too, catering to a market that does not know any better. The Federal "Personal Defense" buckshot (just 3 or 4 pellets) is about the only load that we found that held a decent pattern out to 7 to 10 yards.

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 10:51 pm
by Jim Beaux
Not too impressive.

2 1/2" Barrel
Lessons learned:

Jack bought this pistol for snakes and it looks like a fine tool for that job.
Birdshot, in any gauge, is for little birds.
Buckshot out of a .410 does not penetrate enough to be an effective personal defense load.
The rifled slug was also a disappointment and did not have enough weight or power or penetration to be effective as a defense load.
The .45 Long Colt loads had plenty of penetration and would be the preferred defense load for this pistol.
It’s fun to bust clays with this pistol. ... x-o-truth/

3" Barrel
Lessons learned:

The 3 inch .410 shells did slightly better than the 2 ½ inch shells did. But most of them still failed to make the 12 inch minimum penetration standard. However, a few loads made the minimum penetration standard.
Some of the pellets deviated sharply from their path and left the water jugs.
The longer barrel of the 28 inch shotgun made quite a difference in penetration. It seems that the short 3 inch barrel of the Judge is its main limitation.
Even at 7 yards, the pattern of the Judge is too wide, and will cause some of the load to miss a bad guy. Not only are you responsible for every pellet you send down range, but if they miss him, they do not Stop him. ... revisited/

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Sun Jul 19, 2015 12:45 am
by SA_Steve
I bust out laughing still whenever I see one.

Visited a gun store once where the sales clerk tried to sell me one and he must have thought I was dumber than a rock.

He did tell a great story about how powerful the Judge was and how one shot was all you needed to blow someone half in two.

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Sun Jul 19, 2015 2:43 am
by JSThane
As a self-defense tool, load it with .45 Colt slugs. Shotgun powder burns at a different rate than pistol powder, and you will NOT get the advertised velocity, and thus power, out of a handgun-length barrel. Loading the shotshells with a faster-burning powder would probably work to alleviate this problem, but then some doofus is going to load these hot .410 shells into his 100-year-old SxS .410 and blow it up, so the ammo manufacturers won't do it. For self-defense, you might as well go with a more conventional pistol or revolver.

As a shotgun, just don't. Not only will it produce lower velocity and power than a conventional shotgun, but the aforementioned "donut" effect of rifling a shot cup will render it nigh-useless beyond close-and-personal range. I suppose using a .410 shotshell on a snake will work, but so will a .22 shotshell, and for far less recoil. For shotgunning, get a shotgun, not the Judge.

As a "just because" gun, "gimmick" gun, or just all around "I don't know why, but this things is cool" gun, if that's what trips your trigger, go for it. There ain't no law that says every gun you buy has to make sense, and the Judge certainly is a nonsense gun, but they can be fun nonetheless. For me, I have little to no use for the gun, but I certainly understand why some folks find it so fun, even if I don't share in it.

On a side-note, I'm anectotally-informed that some Judges at least can tolerate .44 Magnum being accidentally put through them. Story I heard involved someone running two or three cylinders of Buffalo Bore heavy .44 loads through a Judge, which took the punishment and shrugged it off. Accuracy suffered even more than normal, though. :biggrinjester: Be a bad idea to do this intentionally, but it made for a funny tale.

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 11:14 am
by VMI77
I got one to use on snakes when I'm about on my property. Never considered using it a a self-defense gun. I like a little more snake killing power than I get with .22 snakeshot and for a long time I couldn't find any .38 snakeshot so I went with the Judge and .410 birdshot. Since finding some .38 snakeshot recently I've gone back to pocket carrying a .38 for snakes. Still, when I don't feel like all that weight in my pocket I go with my lightweight .22.

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 11:37 am
by karder
I agree that these .410 revolvers are not the best self-defense choice for most of us, and I don't expect to see any special force units packing them, but I do think they serve a particular buyer. My mom has a S&W governor in her nightstand. She does not care for shooting and does not go to the range or practice, but she needs to be able to defend herself, especially now that my Dad is having a hard time getting around. If she ever has to fire that gun it will be because someone has breached the bedroom door. I don't expect her to aim, just point and shoot. Given her specific limitations, I think the Governor offers a good option. It is loaded with hornady critical defense and she has practiced once so that she would know what to expect from the recoil.
I agree that there are much better choices, but for an elderly person who is going to barricade themselves and call 911 and only engage if someone breaks down their door, I think these revolvers are a good option. I also don't expect smash and grab thieves to stand around while .410 is being shot at them.

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 1:02 pm
by EEllis
I also like these types of guns as truck or survival guns. True there is not one thing that they do that some other gun can't do better with the wide variety of ammo choices the Judge can fill more roles than just about any other gun. There is even a 454 Judge for those in bear country. The ability to use one gun on snakes, birds, varmints (2 and 4 leg), and even bear is nice. You then have the ability to use the Judge as a signaling device with flares, flashbangs, etc. The ability to use shotshells also gives access to all sorts of specialty loads. I see this as a decent survival pack gun.

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 7:28 pm
by surprise_i'm_armed
Even with all the caveats given above, I believe that Taurus generates some pretty good sales numbers for Judges.
I'm always surprised that the prices for them, new at Academy or similar, are so high. It seems for a "spork" gun,
the prices should be lower.

Smith and Wesson's answer to The Judge was The Governor, which matches and exceeds the Judge's acceptable ammo.
A Governor will take .410 shotgun shells, .45 LC (Long Colt), AND .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol).

I have never seen the Governor in the sale ads for Academy, Bass Pro, Cabela's, or Gander Mountain.


Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 8:43 pm
by rotor
I bought a Governor at Cabelas and it is a very nice revolver. I am not a Taurus fan. The Governor can shoot 2 1/2 " 410, 45ACP in moon clips and 45 LC and is a well made revolver. I bought for carry on my property for general safety against whatever. The lesson to be learned though is that a 410 from a revolver without hearing protection may be worse than a snakebite and I am afraid to try the other ammo without hearing protection. I made that mistake once. On the other hand I can throw the gun at the snake and run. Who has time for hearing protection when you need your gun. The Judge I believe will take 3" 410 shells. I have never seen the Governor at Academy but always see the Taurus models. These are not conceal carry guns. The Governor goes in the Polaris when we go to the property.

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2015 3:46 pm
by winters
My father loves his Taurus judge. He buys very few guns but he bought one pretty quickly after they came out. As for me. Well no opinion. lol

Re: Taurus "The Judge"

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2015 12:15 am
by ajwakeboarder
I'd rather have a Taurus Raging Judge. It uses the .45LC, the .410 like the normal Judge, but you can also shoot a .454 Casull. That would come in handy as a decent bear gun.