HOW DOES ONE CHECK A USED S&W REVOLVER BEFORE BUYING?

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joeb33050 posted this 19 June 2017

 FOR FUNCTION? PULL THE HAMMER BACK AND??? WADDAYUDU?

joe b.

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Duane Mellenbruch posted this 19 June 2017

Joe, this thread is one that has a lot of good information in it and might be a good way to see what to look for and how to determine if it is an issue with the revolver you are looking at.  I tried to use the search feature to find it, but failed.

https://castbulletassoc.org/forum/thread/13060-basic-s-w-tighten-up/

 

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jimkim posted this 19 June 2017

Things I check: 1)the cylinder lock up, should be tight 2)the top strap for any signs of gas cutting 3)the cylinder for any runout, with the crane open 4)the cyl for play with crane both open and closed 5)the muzzle for wear or damage 6)the bore for pitting, or wear. 7)the screw's heads for damage or wear, that could mean it's been worked on a good bit, or it's been serviced by someone that didn't have the proper tools, or both 8)the condition of the metal and finish 9)the condition of the grips 10)for matching serial numbers

That's all I can think of off the top of my head. They are not in order.

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David Reiss CBA Membership Director posted this 19 June 2017

I wrote the instructions on that thread and then followed up in the FS with an article a couple months ago. The basic tests I outlined will tell you if you have issues with that particular revolver. All of which can be easily fixed. Otherwise just check for anything that you would check on anny firearm, bore, chamber, etc.

David Reiss - NRA Life Member & PSC Range Member Retired Police Firearms Instructor/Armorer
-Services: Wars Fought, Uprisings Quelled, Bars Emptied, Revolutions Started, Tigers Tamed, Assassinations Plotted, Women Seduced, Governments Run, Gun Appraisals, Lost Treasure Found.
- Also deal in: Land, Banjos, Nails, Firearms, Manure, Fly Swatters, Used Cars, Whisky, Racing Forms, Rare Antiquities, Lead, Used Keyboard Keys & Dogs, Pith Helmets & Zulu Headdresses. .

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codarnall posted this 20 June 2017

The recoil plate too, for the lack of a better name.  I've have found it to be telltale of a lot of use. Used gun is used!

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David Reiss CBA Membership Director posted this 20 June 2017

Codarnall,

I am not really sure you can tell a whole lot about the gun from observing the "recoil plate" portion of the frame. However checking the hammer nose bushing can show that the gun was improperly cleaned, showing a lack of care. If you notice small circular marks or peening around the "firing pin hole", then that is an obvious sign of improper cleaning, allowing the end of the cleaning rod to slam into the hammer nose bushing.

A simple way to prevent this is to place a small piece of leather over the hole. You can take a strip of leather and cut two slots on each end that will slip over the hammer. Slip one side on the hammer, then wrap it through the frame opening, over the hammer nose bushing, and then back around over the hammer. A similar setup with a piece of leather and a rubber band can be used. 

David Reiss - NRA Life Member & PSC Range Member Retired Police Firearms Instructor/Armorer
-Services: Wars Fought, Uprisings Quelled, Bars Emptied, Revolutions Started, Tigers Tamed, Assassinations Plotted, Women Seduced, Governments Run, Gun Appraisals, Lost Treasure Found.
- Also deal in: Land, Banjos, Nails, Firearms, Manure, Fly Swatters, Used Cars, Whisky, Racing Forms, Rare Antiquities, Lead, Used Keyboard Keys & Dogs, Pith Helmets & Zulu Headdresses. .

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ethmoid1999 posted this 3 weeks ago

I am not sure about cylinder runout as mentioned but I bought a used Model 28 several years ago. Worked fine SA/DA dry firing. With ammo, double action seized up. Called S&W and the man thought cylinder end shake. Anyway, sent it in for repair and it's been fine since. The smith told me he added a spacer to remove slack. He told me firing lots of hot 125 grain 357's caused it.

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M3 Mitch posted this 3 weeks ago

I have read that at least some more recent 29 and 629, anyway, Smiths have been built with an "endurance package" - how would one recognize that?  Or is it just standard from a certain serial # on?

 

What all models have the "endurance package"?

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David Reiss CBA Membership Director posted this 3 weeks ago

Don't know what the endurance package would be other than a washer to lessen the wear. A revolver is going to have certain wear in various locations and the designers have chosen which part of the two bearing together they want to wear down more quickly, from a "ease of repair" or "cost of replacement part". In the case of endshake, the barrel of the crane is easier and cheaper to fix that the cylinder. In my opinion adding a washer just adds another part to fail. 

Endshake does not happen overnight, but takes many, many rounds of use. Most S&W revolvers can handle 10,000 rounds of standard loads without needing attention to endshake. Of course using magnum or +p rounds will accelerate the wear. 

But as I said in my earlier posts, endshake is very easy to detect and simple to fix. 

David Reiss - NRA Life Member & PSC Range Member Retired Police Firearms Instructor/Armorer
-Services: Wars Fought, Uprisings Quelled, Bars Emptied, Revolutions Started, Tigers Tamed, Assassinations Plotted, Women Seduced, Governments Run, Gun Appraisals, Lost Treasure Found.
- Also deal in: Land, Banjos, Nails, Firearms, Manure, Fly Swatters, Used Cars, Whisky, Racing Forms, Rare Antiquities, Lead, Used Keyboard Keys & Dogs, Pith Helmets & Zulu Headdresses. .

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RicinYakima posted this 3 weeks ago

IIRC, the "Endurance package" was a frame modification to the lightweight "J"'s in .357 and .32 Mags and "N"'s in .44 Mag. These were thicker webs around the crane and barrel and an extra external rib between the thumb release and recoil shield. On the "N" they were for the steel shooters who put lots of full power loads down range for the rams, and to keep the "J" frame, especially aluminum frames, from stretching.

 

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M3 Mitch posted this 3 weeks ago

My understanding of "what it is" is the same as Ric's.  But my question is, how would you recognize a wheelgun that has the endurance package?  I was reading about this in a Wolfe special about the most reloaded handgun cartridges, as you might expect, the .44 Magnum is in that group.  That article described the S&W model 69, a 5-shot stainless .44 Mag, and apparently all model 69's have the "endurance package". 

If I were involved with S&W's website, I would make it easy to answer this question, but, whoever is running the website does not agree with me that this would be worth putting out there.

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RicinYakima posted this 3 weeks ago

The reinforcement rib behind the recoil shield is a give away on the "J" frames.

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M3 Mitch posted this 2 weeks ago

Thanks Ric, you spelled that out in words but the photo helps understanding. 

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Pepe Ray posted this 2 weeks ago

David;      I'm sorry for being so disorganized. Still trying to figure out the SITE.

Ed has suggested that, as a S&W trainee, you may have some insight to my problem. My pristine

Ruby appears to be a direct copy of a Model 31, S&W, 32 S&W 32L. Except for the screw in the bottom of the butt frame.  My assumption is that since the Spanish manufacturer went to such pains to copy the M31, wouldn't it be un reasonable to believe that the remainder of the piece be faithful to the S&W innards?

Being old,feeble and losing my vision, I'm reluctant to tear  into her to determine if the disassembly procedures are S&W's.  Do you have any sugestions?

Thanks for your patience,  Pepe Ray

Only in His name.

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David Reiss CBA Membership Director posted this 2 weeks ago

David;      I'm sorry for being so disorganized. Still trying to figure out the SITE.

Ed has suggested that, as a S&W trainee, you may have some insight to my problem. My pristine

Ruby appears to be a direct copy of a Model 31, S&W, 32 S&W 32L. Except for the screw in the bottom of the butt frame.  My assumption is that since the Spanish manufacturer went to such pains to copy the M31, wouldn't it be un reasonable to believe that the remainder of the piece be faithful to the S&W innards?

Being old,feeble and losing my vision, I'm reluctant to tear  into her to determine if the disassembly procedures are S&W's.  Do you have any sugestions?

Thanks for your patience,  Pepe Ray

In my experience, Spanish copies don't always use the original design, other than just looking like it has. If you can pop open the side plate and post a photo I can tell you. Removing the side plate is same for most revolvers. Remove the grip panels and sideplate screws. Then with something non-maring, such a wooden hammer handle, rap the grip frame smartley until the sideplate works itself free. Never pry it open.

David Reiss - NRA Life Member & PSC Range Member Retired Police Firearms Instructor/Armorer
-Services: Wars Fought, Uprisings Quelled, Bars Emptied, Revolutions Started, Tigers Tamed, Assassinations Plotted, Women Seduced, Governments Run, Gun Appraisals, Lost Treasure Found.
- Also deal in: Land, Banjos, Nails, Firearms, Manure, Fly Swatters, Used Cars, Whisky, Racing Forms, Rare Antiquities, Lead, Used Keyboard Keys & Dogs, Pith Helmets & Zulu Headdresses. .

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BigMan54 posted this 2 weeks ago

So they have to reinforce the J frames in .357MAG.  I can't say I'm surprised. I remember firing a J frame  model 637 in .357MAG for the first time back when they were first introduced in the mid-90's. They gave us REMINGTON. 357MAG 125JHP's. I even remember firing it for the 2nd time. I don't remember firing it for a 3rd time. Because I didn't fire it ever again with any kind of .357MAG at all.

BECAUSE WHAT KIND OF IDIOT SHOOTS AN 11 OUNCE. 357MAG Revolver more than once.

BOY HOWDY !!!! I'd rather put 500 rounds thru my .454 CASULL with full power loads than touch off one of those little twisting monsters again.

I'm surprised that those things even last 200rds.

Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun.

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