by Mark Keefe - Monday, January 17, 2011
Truth Missing From Raging Judge 28 Gauge Rumors
With the vast array of new guns in the Taurus booth at the 2011 SHOT Show, it was easy to go into new-product overload. But the one gun that stood out most was the 28-gauge Raging Judge revolver. Whenever there is something truly new and different, there are bound to be juicy rumors, which included that the gun had been declared a National Firearms Act item by ATF and "removed."
This is simply not the case. Taurus President and CEO Bob Morrison invited officials from the ATF's Technology Branch to discuss some of the firm's new product introductions. "I asked them to come and give some advice," Morrison said. By all accounts the meeting was cordial, professional, and not a "raid" or "gotcha" as erroneously reported elsewhere. No determination on the gun's status was made at the show.
Remember, to even be in the United States at all, the prototype had to be cleared by ATF for importation. On the 28 gauge Raging Judge revolver, Taurus sought ATF's advice on some modifications to the gun and is the process of implementing the results of those suggestions.
This is a very common practice; gun manufacturers and importers regularly work with ATF as the firearm industry's regulatory agency. Also, despite rumors to the contrary, the .45 Colt/.410 Bore
lever-action Ranch Hand with the rifled barrel is good to go for importation, as is the 28 gauge Circuit Judge. You'll see them later on this year, as well as the 28 gauge Raging Judge with minor
Rumors also abound regarding an impending ATF ruling regarding shotguns and "sporting purposes," but they have nothing to do with the 28-gauge Raging Judge.
There is no doubt that the Taurus Judge series of revolvers has created an entire new category of handguns. The .45 Colt/.410 bore wheelguns have proven immensely popular as defensive and recreational guns due to the versatility of the chamberings (.45 Schofield, .45 Colt or .410 Bore shotshells), together with new improved defensive ammunition from firms such as Federal and Winchester. The basic Judge has expanded into both 2 ½” and 3” chambers, the smaller Model 85-based Public Defender, a polymer version and even the Circuit Judge carbine. The latter fixed the cylinder gap issue that has plagued revolving long guns since Samuel Colt had his factory in Patterson, New Jersey.
--Mark A. Keefe, IV
This morning, Taurus announced the “Raging Judge” revolver chambered for, wait for it … 28 gauge. With this gun, the Judge not only get a bigger bore but also the features that made the Raging Bull in .454 so distinctive and more friendly to the shooter when it comes recoil, including a cushioned insert grip. Initial barrel length is 6 ½” with an overall length of 13 ¾” and a weight of 67 ounces. The nominal bore diameter of 28-ga. is 0.550”, but the land and groove diameters or the twist rate of the Raging Judge are unknown at this time. We haven’t seen the gun yet, but anticipate getting it in our hands on the opening day of the SHOT show.
Unlike the .410 Bore, there are not many loads suitable for defensive use in 28 gauuge, but don’t worry, it won’t take the big ammunition makers long to tool up to catch the newest wave form Taurus.
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