An inside look at a Taurus revolver

Taurus 82 guts

Smith & Wesson revolvers are elegant representations of early 20th century machining. Ruger revolvers are simple and rugged, reducing the revolver to as few components as possible. Taurus revolvers are…neither. In fact, the inside of a Taurus revolver is a confusing mess of design choices that look like a Brazilian simply turned up at the factory on a Wednesday and said “Here…here is good” and then went for a siesta or whatever they do down there.

Take for example the mainspring. Taurus uses a strut & coil mainspring, which is similar to the one used in Ruger revolvers. However, the strut is dangerously thin, and the retaining plate for the arrangement is small and not easily manipulated. Additionally, the advantage of the strut & coil system is demonstrated best by Ruger revolvers, which use an entirely captive trigger system; this means armorer level maintenance is accomplished much easier than using the non-captive internals on an S&W. But then Taurus uses an internal arrangement similar to an S&W revolver, but in no way sensible. Look at the placement of the trigger return spring. At that angle, it’s actually going to make the trigger pull even heavier than necessary, and at the same time won’t be able to return to the trigger to the forward position as quickly as if it were oriented lower.

It’s just a confusing mess in there. Although I can pretty much guess why it looks like that: “patents.”


  1. I have done a little work on S&W revolvers, and they are indeed easy to work on, and I think they are absolute works of art! The lines are just right, and they work…..every time…..wish I had a K-frame right now….

  2. ‘Smith work on a Colt requires having a selection of magic wands chosen by Mr Ollivander specifically for the revolver being worked on, a sorting hat and a closet full of Fantasia brooms. I’m certain Colt hired Rube Goldberg (who was still coming down off a bad acid trip) to design the inner workings of their revolvers.

  3. Older Taurus revolvers had a S&W-style rebound slide. They seem to redesign their internal parts every ten years or so. Their design prior to the mid-1980s had a neat feature. The seat for the coil mainspring was on the upper leg of a dog-legged part. The piece was pinned at the point of the knee, and the part’s angle could be adjusted with a screw that bore on the lower leg.

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