Austin, I had a early version. I believe it was actually a 2" bbl. The wife thought it might be a light backup when she didn't want to carrry her Colt Govt Model .380. The gun had several drawbacks in our opinion. It was far too light and had too short a sight radius to produce any kind of plinking accuracy. The single action let-off was OK but cocking the piece with that little bitty hammer was a chore. The double action pull could be likened to pulling a bucket of water out of the well, without the winch!!!! We actually sold it for more than we had in it, so it wasn't all bad.
I was looking at the 8 shot 3 in. airweight w/hi viz sight. I'm not sure if the extra inch would be an adequate sight radius, but I was actually counting on the low weight to provide a little recoil. Not sure if the trigger or hammer are any better on the newer model either.
The trigger on my 617 was heavy, but otherwise not too bad. I opened it up and polished a little bit and it's nice and smooth now, although a bit heavy on the DA at 13 lbs. The SA is 4.5lb. I did the same thing to a 686 and also cut down the rebound spring a little. It's 11lb DA and 2 lb SA. The DA is much nicer, but the SA is too light for newbies, which is why I didn't touch the springs in the 617. Maybe one of these days I'll get a Wolff reduced hammer spring for it so I can drop the DA w/o affecting the SA pull. In the meantime, it makes the 686 feel all that much nicer after shooting the 617.
As to sight radius, I've got a 4" barrel and can pretty much keep all the shots in the black of an NRA 50 ft. slowfire target with Buck-a-Box ammo (shooting offhand & SA). I'm sure the gun could do better in better hands.
As mentioned above, it has a God awful trigger pull in both single and double action and is so light it is hard to hold steady. Mine seems to shoot best with standard velocity ammo. I can keep all eight shots on a Coke can at about 15 yards.
I bought it new for $265.00 (Jumbo Sports close out sale) and have no intention of parting with it. The AirLite is small and light and can be carried in a vest pocket all day long and not noticed.
It has quietly been on many a Boy Scout trip in the north Georgia mountains; where "Deliverance" was filmed. I own better plinkers, but the AirLite is special.
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