Korth Sky Marshal

Korth Sky Marshal

Korth will be showing the Sky Marshal revolver at the 2015 SHOT Show. This six-shot wheelgun is chambered in 9mm and does not need to use moon clips to chamber or extract correctly.

Here’s what we know so far…

The Korth Sky Marshal is a revolver chambered for the “rimless” 9mm cartridge. Typically, the 9mm is found in semi-automatic handguns. However, a number of manufacturers have made 9mm revolvers in the past, such as the Taurus 905 that I reviewed in this article.

Frequently, a manufacturer will use thin pieces of metal that the rimless 9mm will clip into. These clips may be full moon or half moon. The full moon are circular and hold a full load of ammunition – typically five or six rounds. A half moon clip is half the size and capacity of the full moon clip.

Over the years, a few companies have introduced clipless revolvers for rimless ammunition. Smith & Wesson pioneered this in the early 1980’s. To my knowledge, besides Korth, only Charter Arms currently makes a revolver designed for rimless cartridges that doesn’t use clips.

The Sky Marshal has a number of interesting characteristics beyond the 9mm use. One of the most obvious is the addition of a Picatinny rail along the right side of the barrel. Many people like to add a white light to their defensive handguns, and this would give buyers an easy way to do so.

The company plans on offering a laser aiming module to go with the revolver. Korth is a German company and lists the laser as “for official use only.” It is not known if the laser unit will be sold to citizens in the US.

Korth Sky Marshal revolver

The Sky Marshal is a relatively compact revolver with a 2″ barrel and full underlug. It does not appear to be a replacement for a J-frame revolver, but might serve as a nice alternative to a Model 19 with a 2″ barrel.

The gun weighs 19.75 ounces unloaded. All things considered, that seems like a pretty reasonable weight. The 9mm is a high pressure round and can feel a little like a .357 Magnum load when using +P or +P+ ammo. Going too light can cause problems like bullet jump and can make shooting the gun unpleasant.

Double action and single action shooting are possible with this Korth revolver. The hammer is skeletonized.

I’ve always had a thing for revolvers – especially ones that are a bit out of the box. I look forward to seeing this gun at the SHOT Show. I’ll make sure I get additional information and post it here on the site.

Update from Media Day

Prior to the SHOT Show, I attended the Industry Day at the Range event in Boulder City, NV. During this pre-SHOT event, I had a chance to visit the Korth display and shoot one of the new 9mm revolvers.

The Sky Marshal grips filled my hand nicely, and the weight of the gun was nicely balanced. The sights were easy to pick up and use in the full desert sunlight.

Korth 9mm Revolver recoil

The trigger pull on this 9mm revolver was quite nice. In fact, it was one of the nicer double-action trigger pulls I have felt on a factory (ok, semi-custom) gun.

Recoil was a bit snappy, though I really didn’t notice it when shooting. For me, the grips did an excellent job at absorbing recoil. However, looking at the photos of people shooting the gun, I could see that muzzle flip was significant.

Everything about the Korth was great – and then I tried to dump the empty brass. Only five of the six shells dropped free from the cylinder. The case closest to the frame only partially ejected, and I had to pull it the rest of the way out by hand. Other shooters I watched had a similar problem.

Shooting the Korth Revolver

I only had a chance to shoot one cylinder of ammo, so I was not able to see if I could eject all cases by changing/improving my technique.

I like this gun a lot, but based on my very limited exposure, could not recommend it for personal defense. If I had a gun for test and found that it would eject spent cases flawlessly, then I would happily recommend it.

By Richard Johnson

Richard Johnson is a gun writer, amateur historian and - most importantly - a dad. He's done a lot of silly things in his life, but quitting police work to follow his passion of writing about guns was one of the smartest things he ever did. He founded this site and continues to manage its operation.

14 replies on “Korth Sky Marshal”

Smith and Wesson made the K frame model 547 for Palestinian Authority in 9mm using a special extractor that fit in the casing so no clips required. And they did it before Charter and Taurus.

Absolutely correct. I failed to add the word “currently” when mentioning Charter Arms being the only other manufacturer of such a handgun. Thank you for clarifying this.

I’ve always wanted to add a 547 to my collection, but have never found one at a price I was willing to pay. I should probably dig a little deeper in my wallet because I don’t think they will be getting cheaper.

Don’t forget the Medusa. I believe Ruger bought up the patents for it. They don’t appear to be in any hurry to use the design though.

I had a Ruger Single Six .357 that came with a spare 9mm cylinder. But single actions use ejector rods instead of extractors. That gun started my love affair with the 9mm. You don’t appreciate how hot it is until you fire it in a fixed breech gun.

Going too light can cause problems like bullet jump and can make shooting the gun unpleasant.

Are you sure about that? Heavy bullets and an insufficient crimp are what usually cause “bullet-jump” under recoil in lightweight revolvers. This can render a revolver inoperable and thus useless and dangerous if it occurs during a defensive situation.

The problem typically manifests in lightweight revolvers. Perhaps the best way to put it is a combination of a lightweight revolver with heavy bullets that have a light crimp can result in a situation…etc.

I was under the impression that you were referring to bullet weight, not firearm weight in the above quote.
Thank you for your clarification. I have had a 24 ounce, Taurus blue steel .357 magnum tie up with bullet jump while shooting Georgia Arms .357, 158 grain, jacketed hollow points. Both the 4th and 5th unfired rounds jumped the crimp and tied the revolver up, thus rendering it useless. I learned a valuable lesson on ammo selection, bullet and firearm weight, and most important of all….firing your duty/carry ammo to understand its limitations and its performance. It was my brother’s weapon and ammo selection, but the lesson was mine.

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