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Question on Barrels for '70? Contender [message #47352] Sat, 17 September 2022 01:46 Go to next message
Senzog is currently offline  Senzog
Messages: 1
Registered: September 2022
Location: Wisconsin
Forum Newbie
Hi! Have wanted a T/C Contender for years, finally just picked one up at a local funshow.

Firstly, thanks for all the stickied info on this site. I just had a fun couple hours of going down the rabbit hole, of "so what do I have here..."

As far as I can tell, it's a ~1970 that did NOT get the easy-open fix.. and has the first-revision hammer (no safety, no external firing pin selector)

So... My question is... Barrel compatibility...

Do I need to stick to hexagonal barrels? Should I only stick to the similarly ancient looking barrels?

Also... With the 44mag choke... Should I take this off and leave it off? I only intend to ever shoot solid projectiles of factory 44mag ammo.... Hoping modern hunting loads are OK in this old gun!

Many thanks for all you do here!

[Updated on: Sat, 17 September 2022 01:47]

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Re: Question on Barrels for '70? Contender [message #47354 is a reply to message #47352] Sat, 17 September 2022 09:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
gemihur is currently offline  gemihur
Messages: 291
Registered: March 2012
Location: Ridgelines of Virginia
Forum Regular
You've got a nice early one there.
And with a snap on forearm, definitely a feature.
Remove the choke tube when using 44 mag rounds and reinstall it when using hotshot loads.
It is actually not a choke at all but rather a centrifugal arrestor as it acts to detent the spiral of the rifling before the shot column leaves the barrel.
If you intend to only use 44 mag cartridges, yes, leave it off.
Check out this: h=8557&start=0&
Any 44 mag that comply with SAMMI will be safe to use
It will be a handful, tho.
If you reload, consider Trail Boss.

Think twice...shoot once.

[Updated on: Sat, 17 September 2022 09:59]

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Re: Question on Barrels for '70? Contender [message #47355 is a reply to message #47354] Sat, 17 September 2022 10:20 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cajuntec is currently offline  cajuntec
Messages: 1216
Registered: November 2009
Location: Williamsburg, VA
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Forum Admin
gemihur covered it really well, and I agree, you have a nice specimen right there. Congrats on the purchase of a fine looking firearm.

I have one of those, and I use a 10" round bull barrel .45 Colt and a 10" round bull barrel .357 Magnum on it. So no... you don't need to only run hex barrels on it. But you will need a different forearm to match any non-hex / non-snap on stud barrels you may purchase at a later date. You may find that different locking bolt configurations (what some incorrectly call a "locking lug") may be better or worse for that frame. I've got a solid bolt barrel, and a split bolt barrel. They both work equally well, but I've had some of each that took some fitting / changing of the locking bolts to make work easier / correctly. You might get lucky and never have to play around with that, but if you purchase a lot of barrels in the future, you are bound to run into one or more that just needs a bit of locking bolt tweaking or a swap.

I do try to keep to flat lug barrels in the non-easy open frames. They seem to give me much less issues, although I have successfully run a few step-lug barrels in them without issue. Flat lug barrels came in fewer chamberings, but there are still quite a few to choose from.

.44 Mag is a handful in that piece. I've wacked the knuckles of my support hand more times than I care to count using .44 Mag loads. Nice thing though... you can also shoot .44 Specials out of it for a milder recoil that still uses a big projectile - but I'd recommend 180 grain bullets in the Special, vice the 240 grain I usually use in the Magnum.

Of particular praise to you - Thank you for reading all the resources that many of us have put together over the years, vice just jumping on the site and asking questions that were already answered in that section. Many overlook those very valuable tools, or just don't want to take the time to go through them. But my hat is off to you for taking the time to research what you had before asking further questions. That's awesome, and I appreciate it!

Enjoy your new purchase, and let us know how you like it after you get it out to the range.

All the best,

If at first you don't succeed... buy newer / better equipment!

[Updated on: Sat, 17 September 2022 10:23]

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Re: Question on Barrels for '70? Contender [message #47356 is a reply to message #47355] Sun, 18 September 2022 06:28 Go to previous message
Crubear is currently offline  Crubear
Messages: 1790
Registered: March 2010
Location: NW Georgia
Top Contributor
Forum Moderator
The snap on forend will have a habit of snapping off when shooting 44Mag. One of the reasons they replaced it with a screw version.

Barrels are going to be hit or miss. The only good answer is to try it. You'll know when there's an issue, trust me Wink

I'm with the others, outstanding find.

Honestly, I have all the barrels I want or could ever need..... wait, look, there's another!!
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