Taurus View: Clear Side Plate, 1.4″ Barrel, 9 oz

Taurus 85 View

Taurus will be selling a new version of the popular model 85 revolvers in 2014 called the View.  The Taurus View is a double action only (DAO) revolver chambered for the .38 Special.  What gives this gun its name is the clear Lexan side plate that gives you a look at the internal workings of the gun.

However, the clear side plate is not the only thing that stands out about this new revolver.

The View revolvers will have an ultra-short 1.41″ barrel and an overall length of only 5.67″.  These guns use a titanium cylinder and barrel with an aluminum frame.  Total weight is only nine ounces, yet they remain +P rated.  I imagine the fireball from high pressure rounds will be impressive.

Fixed sights – a front ramp and notch rear – are standard on these new handguns.  The cylinder will hold five rounds.  It appears Taurus may have designed a new boot-type grip for these guns.

The new guns will be available in the matte stainless finish and in a pink finish.  Suggested retail pricing is set at $599.

Taurus View Specifications

caliber.38 Special
capacity5 rounds
barrel length1.41"
overall length5.67"
weight (unloaded)9 ounces

While the clear side plate might seem like a gimmick to some, I think it could be an indicator of a significant culture change at Taurus.  Some have reported quality control issues in the past with Taurus, and I documented my own issues with a T&E 709 pistol a few years back.  A clear side plate seems to be an effort by the company to highlight the craftsmanship inside the guns.

“Many new and exciting changes are continuing to take place behind the doors of Taurus these days,” said Taurus Holdings President & CEO Mark Kresser in the company’s latest product catalog.  “Some of them may not be so obvious to the naked eye, yet others will let you take a look into the heart and soul of our company and our products.”

Taurus View

“There is a new culture at Taurus It is one where each employee takes great pride in what they do every day—and that is making the finest firearms in the history of the company.”

I look forward to seeing the new model 85 View and other Taurus products at the 2014 SHOT Show.

Update – January 2014

Taurus released additional information on the View revolver.  The company redesigned the model 85 grip for this gun, creating a new contour that helps reduce printing when carried concealed.  Additionally, Taurus states the grip puts the gun lower in the hand, reducing muzzle flip during recoil.  This is important in any small revolver, but especially one with such a short barrel.

About Richard Johnson

Richard Johnson is a gun writer, police trainer and really bad joke teller. Check out his other writing in Combat Handguns, Guns & Weapons for Law Enforcement, on The Firearm Blog and at BlueSheepdog.

  • SD3

    “…called the View.”
    Really? So now I have to think about Barbara Walters every time I look at it?

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  • http://ThinBlueFlorida.com Randall

    It looks very compact with great potential for concealment. At nine ounces, though, I would try out the +P stuff to see how “fun” the recoil is before I carried it thusly stoked. Wonder if they will be selling them w/o the peepshow window…


    • Hank

      It ain’t the barrel length that makes handguns awkward to conceal and carry. Most folks can carry a 3″ barreled gun in their waistband and sit and bend over with no problem. It’s the grip length that shows through clothes. revolvers add the cylinder bulge to the equation.

      Between the cylinder gap and short barrel what little energy the .38 spl has is wasted. No sir, I don’t like it, I don’t like it at all.

      • http://www.GunsHolstersAndGear.com Richard Johnson

        Generally, I would agree with you Hank. But, for pocket carry, barrel length can make a difference. As you point out, I imagine the velocity loss is going to be significant.

      • frankstclair

        Don’t like it after handling/shooting it, or after reading about it? You guys remind me of the asshats criticizing the Glock in the 80’s. It was plastic, so it had to suck. I actually OWN a view, and have fired 200 rounds though it. It ain’t for +P. 130 gr jacketed works well, and it is accurate to 7 yards, 3 inch groups. It is ALMOST painful to shoot, but guess what? It conceal better than any other weapon I own for its power factor. A Don Hume JIT swallows it. It fits on my left side and never brushes a door way when I pass through, with a primary large semi auto on my right hip. This gun will never be a range toy or target pistol, but I can hide it in running shorts in a pocket holster or simply stick it into a pocket and be armed when otherwise I may not be armed. It is not an “operators|” gun. It is, however, perfect for it’s intended role, deep cover concealed carry and backup gun.

    • Mike

      I agree with Randall that it will be interesting to see if Taurus makes them without the see-through side plate, which I don’t like–too unconventional for me. I would be interested in one with a traditional side plate, but I doubt we’ll see this, as it then wouldn’t be The View.

      • frankstclair

        The ‘Non_View” versions are now avaiable.

  • http://rockinaseaofchaos.blogspot.com That Guy

    So… now you can SEE the broken parts!

    • frankstclair

      Do you have a Taurus with broken parts, or are you parroting people on the internet?

  • Tim

    Boy if only they were thinking. This would be a great gun in 22 mag with a 7 or 8 shot cylinder. 9 ounces not much more than a NAA 22 mag double action and now ammo that works in a 1 inch barrel-hopefully they will rethink plus you might actually be able to shoot a 22 mag at that weight!!!!!!!!!

    • Jason

      Tim, I have to agree with you 100% . I own the NAA Pug but I have a few dislikes about it. This Taurus View in .22 WMR in 7 0r 8 rounds would be close to perfect (For Me). Sure hope that Taurus sees our comments.

  • roger

    These guns use a titanium cylinder and barrel? How can one make a barrel of titanium. It would have to have a steel insert.

    • frankstclair

      It has a steel insert. The cylinder is titanium. The frame and barrel shroud are titamium, you know, like the S&W titanium revolvers.

  • roger

    Also what is that gold piece of broken looking plastic on the side above the grip?

    • http://www.GunsHolstersAndGear.com Richard Johnson

      I’m fairly certain that is a metal portion of the fire control system – perhaps the hammer assembly? I’m sure a gunsmith or Taurus aficionado can provide us with the exact name/function.

    • Marco

      The dourade part is the hammer.

  • Michael

    Barrel length must be the only thing where guys say mine is shorter than yours.
    Why not get rid of the barrel all together

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  • HankG

    Chronograph results should show how much energy is being lost with the short barrel. S&W went to a ploy 38 Special called the Bodyguard last year and it shoots very well. Had to go to a Hogue grip though. It’ll be interesting to see how this little hummer works.

  • Aussie Jim

    Thank you all for your valuable comments. The Taurus 85VTA revolver is designed as a fashion accessory; not as a defensive firearm. Various reviews are misleading and give conflicting detail! The Taurus web site gives only a little valuable information and the generic revolver ‘one size fits all’ BS pdf manual DOES NOT mention the 85VTA. The frame is Aluminum, the cylinder is probably Titanium and the Barrel liner may possibly be Steel of some type; but there is no detail. The gold plastic thing is in fact the hammer – probably colored aluminum; so wait for the fractures. The front sight is crap; there is sufficient room on the barrel rib for a dovetailed fiber optic or night sight. A 1/4″ or 6mm ejector rod is because Taurus do not believe you need to reload in a defensive gun fight. The Ejector rod is an easy fix, buy a longer 2″ framed model (part No. 14) and trim it to the length of the 1.41″ or 35mm barrel. Yes a long grip ‘prints’ under your clothes; but a 3”barrel with a fibre optic sight would start to make this a defensive revolver. No mention of the DAO trigger pull, so I guess it must be off the scale just like the Taurus M380. In all the Taurus hype these is no indication that they have fixed the numerous reports of poor quality control issues. The MSRP of $599 is a joke, for that price you can buy a new Glock and 200 rounds of ammo. A Note to Randall, before you fire +P ammo from the aluminum-framed 85VTA, take a last look at your face in the mirror and a long fond last look at your firing hand. Kind regards to you all

    • frankstclair

      Do you own one? Have you handled one? Have you fired one?

  • William.p.gavin

    When are the guns going to come on the market,I’m waiting for one………

    • Leigh Rich

      Only hit the market for a short time before it was dropped.

  • Michael Frankowski

    I’m definitely not anti-Taurus. But I can’t help but feel that Mark Kresser is way off base in believing that folks will want to “view” how a revolver operates. I also feel that Mr. Kresser has completely misjudged the gun-buying public.

    He apparently feels that the clear Lexan side plate will convey that quality of The View is so good that Taurus has nothing to hide. When I read this “selling point,” my thought was that this “logic” is downright silly.” If Taurus guns are good enough to display their inner workings through a clear side plate, then there is no need to display their inner workings.

  • rogertc1

    Excited I have one coming for my collection. Hope for a pink one however sill take the natural. Price below $500 now.

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  • Leigh Rich

    Well Mark Kresser is out of there and the View has been dropped. I got mine for the collection. Really unique. the visible working parts are polished and attractive. (Much like a mechanical watch).The gun is made up of stainless, aluminum and titanium. The only down side would be the Lexon. But it is pretty indestructible however is machined and not cast.
    All in all the $447 I paid for from Buds.com , was worth it to me. Very few left on the market.