Let’s call a spade a spade and come right out and say it. The Rock Island M206 sucks!!! It’s so bad I don’t know where to start.
I purchased my M206 on a whim, which is something you generally don’t want to do when buying a gun. Granted, researching it wouldn’t have helped since for some reason all of the reviews that I have found tend to be positive. I suppose it was the classic look of the gun that attracted me to it. It looks a lot like a Colt Detective model. It has classic checkered wood grips that brings one back to a simpler time when guns were made by American men, for American men, for blasting commies and saving damsels in distress all while trying to catch dirty bootleggers.
The gun was inexpensive, only costing me about $300. The relative cheap cost is it’s only redeeming quality. With that being said, it’s better than a sharp stick. However, there are three major things wrong with it.
1. Sometimes the gun won’t fire: This is most likely due to a weak hammer strike. When I first took my new M206 out I noticed that every so often it wouldn’t fire. I would check the back of the casing and noticed that there weren’t any marks on it from the firing pin. The next time I took it to the range I took along my Smith&Wesson model 14-3. I shot both guns using the same box of ammo. My Smith&Wesson never failed to fire. However, my M206 did. I watched some reviews of the M206 on YouTube and noticed other people having the same issue. unfortunately, they incorrectly blamed the ammo and not the gun.
2. Good lucking hitting anything with it: When I first took it to the range (that’s what I call my back yard) I was shocked by what a bad shot I was. It didn’t take me long to figure out what was wrong, and it wasn’t me. The issue with the gun is that the hammer spur comes back and reaches over the grip. This means that the spur rubs up against
the top of your hand. When you pull the trigger and the hammer comes down, it causes the gun to move in your hand just before the hammer hits the primer. I have read that other people have had a similar problem. They play it off as not being a big deal, but not being able to hit your target is kind of a big deal.
3. The cylinder has a lot of play: I have several revolvers from several different brands and none of them have anything close to this much play. When I say “play” I mean that the cylinder moves around when it’s supposed to be locked into place. It was so bad that I took it to a friend of mine who is a gunsmith and asked him if it was safe to shoot.
His response, “It will work for what you need it to do.” When I inquired further as to what he meant he responded with,” use it once and throw off a bridge.” As previously stated, it’s better than a sharp stick. It’s a Saturday night special and nothing more. I find that it works well as a paper weight, but I don’t have much confidence in it beyond that.