Am I correct in assuming that I can lighten up the trigger pull on a J frame by changing springs?
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October 29, 2004, 08:46 PM
You are correct. You might visit the web site for Wolff springs. They offer kits which should be of interest to you.
October 29, 2004, 09:45 PM
Thanks for the help.
October 29, 2004, 11:01 PM
A word to the wise. The J frame hammer is quite light and when mainspring (hammer spring) tension is reduced misfires can result. If you replace that spring, test the pistol thoroughly before depending on it for serious purposes. If it is a carry gun, make sure you fire at least 200 rounds of the carry ammo before relying on the gun.
You will probably also replace the trigger return spring; make sure that trigger return is OK and that there is enough extra tension to handle any dirt or crud that could slow or stop trigger return with the weaker spring.
October 30, 2004, 12:42 AM
Thanks for the advice. This is a new pistol for my wife and I've told her we probably need to put about 400 rounds thru it before we look at anything. She has small hands, and arthritis, and she cannot cock the hammer with her right thumb. I was watching her shoot it in DA and she appeared to be working at it, though she wouldn't admit it. I'm just kind of looking down the road in case it doesn't get markedly better for her. I imagine all of her shooting will be double action. I've changed trigger springs in rifles, but revolvers are new to me; I just didn't know how easy, or hard, it would be to lighten the trigger pull only.
October 30, 2004, 11:00 AM
If at all possible make sure the grips fit her hands.Years ago my wife bought a Charter undercover and we ended up buying a set of Packmayr grips to give her the handle she needed.Back in the 70s while attending the police academy in Tuscaloosa,Alabama, I noticed something at the firing range that may help your wife with her double action shooting.A female officer was qualifing with a Colt detective special.This was the old 50 yd course of fire and she did qualify with her snubby. When she fired the revolver, she hooked her off hand index finger over her trigger finger to give herself more leverage.
October 30, 2004, 03:10 PM
Ditto Jim's post. J frames are very touchy and the spring power can be reduced, but not a lot. Be sure to test frie it with the carry ammo! The trigger pull can be lightened up by doing all the work inside, also.
October 30, 2004, 04:09 PM
She tried the two finger approach, as Capbuster suggested, and it helped. She was shooting a little low, but that will get better with practice. I think with the 2 fingers and maybe lightening the trigger just a little, as Dave suggested, it will be ok. I think single action shooting is pretty well ruled out because the hammer not only has a long throw but is pretty stout, even to me. If the hammer spur causes her carry problems, then I'll probably just have it bobbed.
thanks for all the help.
October 30, 2004, 05:37 PM
Hi Dave and guys,
I have had good success with "rolling" that coil mainspring on a belt sander. This reduces tension without shortening the spring, but it takes a bit of experience to get it right. I usually try that first before going to a new spring, but sometimes I goof.
November 1, 2004, 03:29 PM
Jim could be onto something there. I have heard of doing that, but lacked the courage to try it. I think heat can take the tension out of springs if they over heat. I lioke to use new Wolff springs because there is no guess work about what you have done. They are very cheap and easy for me.
November 2, 2004, 12:46 AM
Anytime you are grinding any spring you need water handy to cool it before it overheats. But the "rolling" does work. I do use Wolff springs, but to be honest, I don't quite trust them, as I have had too many of their coil springs that would not hold up and flat springs that either wouldn't hold tension or were so brittle they broke. I have also had Wolff springs for specific applications that were just plain too weak to work properly. At times they seem to be aiming exclusively for the DIY "trigger job" market where some folks consider a super light pull more important than reliability.
The fact is that makers of quality guns build in some "overkill" to deal with adverse conditions (like dirt, mud, cold) and most of the traditional "slicking up" involves removing part of that over-design. But it can also remove that extra margin of reliability; hopefully, the owner will not need it.
I admit that I have not been in the business for several years, and maybe Wolff is better now, but I prefer OEM parts (including springs) if at all possible. As to WWII mag springs, I have found them superior to current springs in most cases (and bad ones are obvious). I don't know why, maybe it is just some more of the corner cutting so common today. Or maybe the spring makers figure that if they make springs that don't last they will sell more springs, something the WWII makers would not have thought of.
November 2, 2004, 02:22 AM
Here's a tangent question; I wanted my 'smith to bob the hammer on my recent vintage 637 (pre-internal lock, post MIM parts) and she (yes, she) was reluctant to remove the hammer spur 'cause she said that that extra mass was needed for reliable ignition.
With a stock hammer spring, does this sound correct? I suspect my 'smith may be overly conservative? (she knows that the 637 is one of my CCW pieces)
November 2, 2004, 03:13 PM
Jim: All I ever talk about is my experience with springs and parts. I have never had any problem that I know about with Wolff springs, but that does not mean much. When I started tuning six guns, I did it the old fashioned way and reduced the main spring by the "Wasp Waist" method which I am sure you are familiar with. I also made a new trigger and bolt spring with piano wire and re bent the hand spring to reduce the hand tension on the rachet. This worked pretty good but took an hour if I got lucky. Then Walt came out with the single action spring kits and I started using them to save time. My turn around on these cowboy guns is 7-10 days so the hour I saved more than paid for the cost of the new springs. To date, none of them has failed. I drill a hole in the frame and make a hand spring with a coil spring and plunger similar to the Ruger system. This makes a six gun pretty tough. I have never had much to do with old magazines so I do not know how good they are. I do change my magazine springs with the plus 5% Wolff replacements and so far, so good. My oldest magazines were stolen with my Number 16 Cadillac so I have replaced them with new ones from CMC. That was almost two years ago and some of them have been loaded with 8 rounds since I got them. I guess I am lucky in that I have'n't had the problerms that others have had. I do not doubt them or you one bit, and am sorry to hear that things do not work out with others like they do for me. I enjoy your posts and 90 % of the time, we are both in agrrement. Hang in there, Jim!