S&W 617 (10-shot) Problem!!


April 18, 2005, 09:22 PM
I recently bought a new 10-shot S&W 617.. great little firearm, it points & handles beautifully, and I've only put some 300 rds through it. Since it's a .22, it gets dirtier than my 686, so i clean it after almost every range session. I've noticed one problem with the gun, and am not sure how serious it is. In SA mode, the revo works fine, but in DA mode, it frequently "locks up" when I squeeze the trigger. I have to stop squeezing, maybe switch to SA mode, and then things clear up. But only for a while.. :( The problem gets acerbated when I try rapid firing.. it's like the trigger action is getting hung up or stuck, and the cylinder does not rotate.

Is this an inherent problem due to the fact that it's a 10-shot? I love this revolver, it's remarkably accurate, even with iron sights at 50 yds, and have no intentions of parting with it. I'm just rrying to figure out if this is a known problem that can be fixed, or not?


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April 18, 2005, 09:39 PM
No, being a 10-shot has nothing to do with it. These are great guns, and probably the last one I would ever sell if I was forced to get rid of all my firearms.

Try these actions:

First, check that your ejector rod is tight. Note: It's left hand threaded.

Second, take a toothbrush and clean out the crud under your extractor star (with your ejector rod fully depressed) at the rear of your cylinder. This is probably your main problem right now. Crud builds up FAST under a .22 extractor. Any crud under that star and it binds your cylinder.

Third, scrub your cylinder face vigorously with a bronze brush. .22's are dirty, and the cylinder face gets cruded up fast making it hang up on the rear of the barrel's forcing cone interface.

Fourth, don't oil anything on a .22, except maybe ONE drop down the face of the hammer. Oil attracts crud.

Carry a bronze brush and old toothbrush with you to the range so you can check the above mentioned points whenever things get gummed up again.

April 18, 2005, 10:28 PM
It might be worth taking off the sideplate and cleaning out the internal components. You said this is a "new" revolver, and S&W are known for occasionally having manufacturing detritus in the works when shipping a revolver out. Do the external cleaning first, as Drifter721 has suggested. If this doesn't clear up the problem, go to internal cleaning (or get your local gunsmith to do it for you, if you aren't familiar with the internal components).

Another thing to remember is that you have to allow for trigger reset. When you've pulled the trigger, you have to allow it to move forward a certain amount to reset, before you pull it again. Those 10-round revolvers have a shorter, "stickier" reset than the 6-round guns, in my experience. Try allowing the trigger to move all the way forward between shots - this might cure the problem.

April 18, 2005, 10:41 PM
Try different ammo as well. I had the same problem with the some "hot" Aguila ammo. All others would work fine.

April 18, 2005, 11:03 PM
take of the grip, and look for a little screw in the front strap of the
grip frame, make sure this is completely tightened down. This is
called the strain screw, and is a frequent source of DA problems, even
a 3/4 turn loose can cause problems (It did with my 686+). If it loosens
again hit it with some loctite (Blue). :D

Also make sure your charge holes are completly dry of oil, this only seems
to matter to 22's but the cases will actually slide back and jamm up the
works. I see this happen alot. :)

Standing Wolf
April 18, 2005, 11:59 PM
By the way, spalit, welcome to the High Road, and you might let us know how things turn out with this gun. It's always good to know which bit(s) of good advice actually did the trick.

April 19, 2005, 04:26 PM
I concur with the previously listed advice about cleaning the cylinder face and add one minor detail.

Also check and clean the forcing cone.

My 500 had jacket shavings on it from a particular brand of ammo which caused exactly the symptom you describe. I couldn't actually tell it was a 'jacket' fragment until it was clean. It had to be 'picked' off with a knife blade. The tolerances are very tight, so minor crudding can make a big difference.

Good luck.

April 19, 2005, 06:30 PM
I have noticed jacket shavings, and crudding around the forcing cone, particularly from the high-vel copper-clad ammo. I will try out all the cleaning options - range report will follow soon enough :p

I also have a pair of Hogue rosewood laminate grips coming in, one for the 617, the other for the 686.. can't wait till they arrive !!

Do most .22 handgun shooters use std. velocity ammo for plinking/practice, or are the high-vel rounds just fine? Reason I ask is I have an insane amount of CCI MiniMags, peters High vel sitting at home :D I'd like to be able to use the same ammo that works well in my 10/22, but it's not like I need an excuse to get more ammo (heh)

I've also been using CLP for cleaning, works great on the 10/22, but since CLP is oil-based, I'm wondering if I should switch to something else for the revolver? You wouldn't expect CLP to actually attract crud, would you?

Standing Wolf
April 19, 2005, 06:35 PM
Do most .22 handgun shooters use std. velocity ammo for plinking/practice, or are the high-vel rounds just fine?

They should all work just fine in everything but a match pistol, which is usually fired with standard velocity ammunition to save wear and tear on the pistol and reduce recoil during timed and rapid fire events.

I think most plinkers just shoot whatever's cheapest that actually works in their guns.

April 21, 2005, 09:49 PM
115grfmj.. it was in fact, the screw on the front strap that was the problem. I took off the grip, and immediately noticed the screw was at least a full turn loose. :banghead: This seems to have fixed the problem. A few hundred dry fires, and it's still working fine..

I did go over the gun again with a toothbrush, but I had really cleaned it out quite a bit since the last range session, so I did'nt see any crud under the extractor, near the forcing cone or the cylinder front face.. it was that danged screw all along..

Thanks for all the other advice too.. I'm always lurking around here looking for good tips :)

April 21, 2005, 11:11 PM
any time you have those kind of problems with a smith revolver check the'
strain screw. If it works loose again just clean the threads with alcohol, and
put a little dab of blue loctite on it.

My 686+ did the same thing to me awhile back after only 300 rds. :D

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