The Taurus Judge is a great firearm for high pressure, close encounter situations where the rush of fear and adrenaline overpower the ability to properly aim. Loaded with a .410 Bore Shotgun Shell, any assailant would be viciously hurt or killed by one of these rounds, and all the victim needs to do is point in the direction and shoot!
When I finally got around to getting my wife a home defense weapon of her own, I tried to think logically and followed it with some good research and personal history. I also took her to the range a few times and tried on a variety of firearms to see how well she would do. She proved to be an excellent shot at every weapon she tried and seemed like an instant master. Unfortunately, she has incredible taste in everything from jewelry to men (thank you very much), and firearms were no exception. As such, she decided that she really enjoyed the FN Herstal FS2000, but would even “settle” for a Beretta CX-4 Storm.
I was proud of her for making such bold statements, but I wasn’t prepared to spend over two grand on an FS2000, and an AR-15 was a much better value than the CX-4 storm, but neither were appropriate for home defense purposes.
After some research and consideration, I decided to look into getting a Mossberg 12 Guage Shotgun with an 18” barrel. She agreed to go to the local armory and try one out.
At the gun shop, we requested to view the Mossberg, and as she tried it on to give it a good pump, the thing made her look like she was 12 years old! I knew the salesperson was being very polite and contained himself, but very shortly thereafter he provided an adequate suggestion: the Taurus Judge, a 5 round capacity revolver with a three inch barrel capable of firing 2.5” .410 Shotgun Shells as well as the massive .45 Colt cartridge, or more commonly referred to as the 45 Long Colt.
I deeply wanted to get a firearm with a rail system, and the store’s Taurus Judge did not have one. They were nice enough to try and find me one, but after two weeks of search with no luck, I decided to go online and find myself a discontinued version at a reduced price. With a simple order and FFL file, we had the Judge delivered by the end of the week. After about ten minutes of paperwork and background check, I loaded up on a vicious amount of ammo and headed home with our new firearm.
The Taurus Judge is produced by Taurus International of Porto Alegre, Brazil and imported into Miami, Florida. The name changed to the Taurus Judge from 4410 then later 4510 as the company learned that judges in high crime areas of Miami, Florida were purchasing the model to bring to courtrooms for self defense purposes.
Their current lineup consists of 12 variants, from its polymer Public Defender to the Stainless Steel models to the one we have, a Blued Steel black that has the spirit of a wild Mustang.
The Taurus Judge comes in several variants, there are several key aspects that are common among all models:
– Available in Stainless Steel, Blued Steel, or Polymer
– .45 Colt / .410 Bore 2.5” Chamber, 3” Barrel
– 5 Round Capacity
– “Ribber” Grips (they work great at absorbing the recoil)
– Fixed Red/Orange Fiber Optics Sight (I like this, works great at gathering light in the dark)
– Discontinued, but I found mine with a Rail System
– 23 Ounces with the Rail System
The rail system allowed my to go on amazon and get a Hilight 190 Lumen Pistol LED Strobe Flashlight with Weaver Quick Release. The first time I tested the flashlight, I pointed it to my eyes and it blinded me!! What a thrill!
The combination of the .410 Bore Shotgun Shell and the 45 Colt make it an interesting choice of firearm. I knew that my wife would be able to handle the .410 bore shell, and I was attracted to the powerful 45 Long Colt. And each choice of ammunition comes with some interesting combinations as well.
.410 Bore Shotgun Shells
This is the choice of power you want armed in the home or car at all times for those high adrenaline close encounter situations. Point and shoot is all the accuracy you need with these. The main difference is that you have the 000 Buckshot .410 for target practice and shooting snakes, and the recently introduced Winchester PDX .410 Defender.
The PDX 410 was specifically designed for the Taurus Judge and has three plated discs with 12 bb pellets following right behind them. They cost twice as much, but are worth it to keep in your Judge at all times for their stopping power.
.45 Long Colts
These badboys were one of the reasons I decided to commit to the Taurus Judge. I had lots of fun with 45 acp rounds and love the bigger bang of 44 magnums in both revolver and semi automatic forms, so I knew I’d like these cartridges. With the 45 Long Colts however, I found out that they can be tricky to find, expensive when available, and come in what’s callled a Cowboy cartridge, which are essentially raw lead bullets and higher grain powder that emulate original 45 Colt Cowboy shooting.
With some good research I found ways around these issues. For one, Hornady 45 Long Colt Hollow Point LEVERevolution is the defensive choice for this caliber and I keep them at the side in case I’m the one that needs to use it. It has a trajectory speed of 960 fps and is meant to flatten upon connecting with soft tissue, dissipating the probability of going through the other side of the assailant. Beyond that, it has nice accuracy compared to the cheaper 45 Long Colts I’ve used for practice.
Now, I’ve also used Federal ammunition for the Long Colt, but they tend to be extremely expensive and hard to come by. Ultimately, I found the Military Ballistics Industries 45 Long Colt Full Metal Jacket Flat Nose for almost 40% less!!!! I can’t tell you how excited I was to find a FMJ bullet that much cheaper than the Federal Ammunition with the Flat Nose half exposed lead, online, without having to travel nearly 16 miles!!
I enjoyed taking the Taurus Judge and testing out our new range and see how far I could push the membership privileges. I’ve gone several times very early in the morning, one hour after sunrise as the rules state, and found myself alone and meditative as I released round after round of powerful and furious projectiles.
Immediately I noticed the heavy yet nicely distributed weight on the firearm. The 000 Buckshots centered nicely on the target with minimal aiming. The Hornady 45 Long Colt Hollow Point LEVERevolution really went where I wanted it to go.
The only major disappointment was the Federal Ammunition target .45 Long Colt. For some time, I just couldn’t get it to where I wanted it to go. I was surprised at one point after a couple of sessions at the range, they started listening to me! But after they run out, I’m going to get started at testing out the Military Ballistics Industries 45 Long Colt Full Metal Jacket Flat Nose, 40% and full metal jacket, even if they shoot the same they’re going to be much better.
One thing is for sure though, by far the best round that goes through the Taurus Judge is the Winchester PDX .410 Defender; the recoil is the lightest, its direction is the straightest, it groups centered nicely on the target, and it creates the most damage. It was kind of a pleasure to shoot.
Overall, the Taurus Judge is a fantastic home defense tool worthy of any residential armory. I have no regrets purchasing this fantastic firearm, and neither does my wife. Late in the evening, we parade around the house on practice runs; her with her Taurus Judge and strobing flashlight, and me with my 45acp and laser. Anyone lucky enough to be noticing our windows in the pre-dawn hours would get quite a thrill, and a clear message!