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The main reason we see so many polymer frames is one word. Cheap Polymer frames can be produced much cheaper than metal frames with minimal secondary operations before assembly. Most expensive part is the slide and internal parts.
I think that it's weight. The shooting public has been pushing for lighter carry weights. People won't want to tote around big weights. Polymers do not corrode.

Polymer magazines, like those in the Glock handguns, require less maintenance than steel or aluminum magazines. There is a name for people who neglect magazines - astonished.

On the flip side? The demand for a lighter carry pistol is creating some oddball handguns. We get nightmares like the S&W 329PD. Weighs 25 ounces dry. Four inch barrel. 44 Magnum. Uses some space age material called "Scandium" that changes the aluminum to make it either stronger/tougher better.

S&W makes a separate pistol called the 340PD that uses the 357 Magnum. 12 ounces dry. Two inch barrel, which will lightup the great outdoors with H110 and the like "magnum" powders. If you want to use faster propellants like 231 or Bullseye you can probably move up closer to 357 magnum pressures, and get yourself nice performance. Just around $1,000 a copy.

An M&P 38 Bodyguard is 3 ounces heavier, just uses 38 +P and costs 60 percent as much. The Ruger LCR will be about as much money.

I have loaded 357 magnum rounds with 231, yielding 1,000 feet per second out of my SP101. The recoil is a push rather than a smack. For the modern "self defense" projectiles this is also a nice velocity. I am concerned about velocity stability, I need to spend more time working with the loads to get a decent "shot to shot consistency".

I would really like to see Ruger or S&W come up with something close to the Charter Arms Bulldog. I think that they could get a following, especially with chunky polymer grips.
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