Is my revolver supposed to be able to do this?


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Surplussoldier
August 17, 2006, 11:29 AM
This is a bit of a silly question, but I am new at revolvers.

I have a S&W Model 28 and I found out that if I don't return the trigger completely after (dry)-firing a shot, and then pull the trigger softly, not all the way, I can cycle through the cylinder without having the hammer fall back all the way. So basically I can dry-fire rapidly and softly with the hammer not going fully taut each time.

It kind of reminds me of weakly cycling a lever action rifle. Is this okay to do or will it damage the mechanism from improper cycling?

Also, when I live fire it with .357 rounds, it sends some hot shavings to the sides. Not necessarily to the shooter, as this is rare, but to the people close to the side of me. It doesn ot do this with .38s. The gunsmith said that the timing was okay when I bought it.

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Vern Humphrey
August 17, 2006, 12:23 PM
The timing is definitely not okay. This gun needs to go back to the factory.

Striker
August 17, 2006, 01:04 PM
Could be, but not necessarily a timing issue, that is causing the spitting. I have several S&W revolvers set up to stage for DA shooting, that will cycle as described. If the cylinder stop does not engage and lock up the cylinder before hammer fall, then it is a timing issue.

If it the cylinder locks up, then most likely is a cylinder gap problem. I recently purchased a used Model 13 that functioned as described and thought it was a timing problem. Turned out, after my gunsmith checked, to be a cylinder gap of 10 thousands or so. Gunsmith turned the barrel back one thread, and reset the gap to 4 thousands. Problem solved and I now have a custom mdl 13 with a barrel length of 3 15/16" :o

Regardless, have it checked out by S&W or a qualified gunsmith.

Surplussoldier
August 17, 2006, 01:22 PM
Okay, I will look into it, maybe post a video of the "funny" cycling. It cycles normally when you cock the hammer normally, or when you use the double action pull. I have fired about 100-150 rounds out of it, mostly .357 magnum.

Fletchette
August 17, 2006, 05:10 PM
If it the cylinder locks up, then most likely is a cylinder gap problem. I recently purchased a used Model 13 that functioned as described and thought it was a timing problem. Turned out, after my gunsmith checked, to be a cylinder gap of 10 thousands or so. Gunsmith turned the barrel back one thread, and reset the gap to 4 thousands. Problem solved and I now have a custom mdl 13 with a barrel length of 3 15/16"

I don't follow you on this one. Why would the barrel gap affect the trigger's ability to cycle the cylinder without the hammer falling? :confused:

Surplussoldier
August 17, 2006, 05:42 PM
Woah, don't get me wrong here. The hammer still goes up and down when I do the fast cycling, it just isn't cocked "all the way" and doesn't strike as hard as when I do a proper full trigger pull instead of a sequence of rapid pulls after I have gotten the trigger into a certain relaxed position.

In fact, if I had to do a proper description, here is what I would say:

Normal Operation

Pull (DA) trigger
Hammer is cocked while cylinder rotates
CLICK - Hammer falls!

Strange Operation

After partially resetting trigger after DA trigger pull
cylinder goes round and round while hammer bobs up and down like one of those silly "drinking birds" you can make feed from a glass of water, in a complete mockery of the regular operation

It is as if I can make the cylinder rotate without fully cocking the hammer, and I can do it again after I let the hammer return.

My question is - is my revolver supposed to be able to do this or is it an indication of a problem? Also, doing so must be wearing on the mechanism, right?

Old Fuff
August 17, 2006, 07:06 PM
There is a little lever mounted in the front of the hammer, called a "sear." When you start to pull the trigger in double action a lip on the trigger pushes against the bottom of the sear, and causes the hammer to rotate backwards until it is released. When the trigger returns forward it pushes the sear back into a slot in the hammer. as the hammer returns all of the way forward the trigger stops pushing on the sear, and a little spring behind it pushes it back forward again.

If the sear should stick in the hammer, or something is wrong with the spring behind it, the revolver would act as you describe. Something may be wrong in the hammer sub-assembly, or it may be a case where a good cleaning is needed. This situation is often more frequent if someone has shortened the rebound (trigger return) block spring to lighten the action.

Before anything else I would recommend a good cleaning. If that isn't the answer you may have to find an experienced gunsmith, or return it to the factory.

Your problem isn't right, but it is understandable. ;)

MCgunner
August 17, 2006, 07:21 PM
Nothing's wrong with the gun. If you short stroke it, it will cycle the cylinder without cycling the hammer. My M10 does it, my two Tauri do it, only revolver I have ever owned that DOESN'T do it is a Rossi.

Now, you have to kind of concentrate to get it to cycle like that, but it will do it. I've never actually had a revolver short cycle while shooting, have heard of it happening in rapid fire, but I can make it happen just sitting around the house playing with the unloaded revolver, I can get it to do that if I concentrate and release the trigger slowly enough.

Old Fuff
August 17, 2006, 07:29 PM
It depends...:uhoh: :)

If you short stroke it before the finger on the front of the trigger engages the cylinder stop the cylinder will freeze. If the trigger is far enough forward so that the trigger does pick up the cylinder stop the sear should be released. Sometimes it's't because of a soft trigger return caused by a shortened or light aftermarket rebound block spring, or one slowly lets the trigger go forward.

In any case someone needs to pop the sideplate and see what's going on.

MCgunner
August 17, 2006, 08:44 PM
Well, my Smith can do it, both Tauri, and revolvers I've owned in the past, both new and used. The cylinder prawl picks up the cylinder just slightly before the sear is engaged on the hammer. You can feel the clicks as you release if you release the trigger slow enough. Normal release, you won't feel it. It's very close together. You have to concentrate and slowly release the trigger to feel it.

I'm going to take and post a video clip, hang on.

Old Fuff
August 17, 2006, 08:58 PM
True... And I can do it too. :)

But your solution to the problem isn't the only possible one. That's why it would be advisable to look and see... ;)

Years ago when revolvers were still used in bullseye matches some competitors would remove the sear, and shoot single-action only. If the hammer was not thumb-cocked you could pull the trigger and the cylinder would rotate in the manner described.

Smith and Wesson also made a special single-action kit for K-frame/center fire revolvers that offered a shorter hammer fall, faster lock time, and no double action sear.

I'm not saying your wrong, just that you might not be right... :confused: :confused:

MCgunner
August 17, 2006, 09:10 PM
Okay, here it is. I managed to do it once on the first try. Hard to control the trigger that finely and hold a camera. But, JUST before the sear engages, the cylinder prawl does. If you catch it at that click, you can rotate the cylinder without the hammer (aka short stroke).

13mb file

http://media.putfile.com/PICT0051-21-64

Master Blaster
August 18, 2006, 09:44 PM
I'm with MCGunner here, pulling the trigger till the hand rotates the cylinder and the cylinder stop drops in the notch and then releasing it part way before the hammer falls, pulling the trigger again till the hand rotates to the next chamber cylinder stop drops, before the hammer falls, then releasing part way... I always do this six times slowly when I check the double action timing on any revolver I am checking out. I never let the hammer fall or release the trigger all the way. If the cylinder stop drops on all six chambers before the hammer falls I know the double action timing is good. Every revolver I own will do this.

I think thats what is being described. If so its normal.

The spitting of jacket or lead shavings is not normal however, and could indicate a timing problem, or a cylinder alignment problem if the revolver times as described above.

Is it possible that what you are experienceing with the magnum loads is normal blast caused by the slower burning powder, maybe folks are being hit by bits of burning powder rather than the shavings you mention?? Have you actually seen bits of gilding metal???

runninmike
August 19, 2006, 01:06 PM
Sounds like you are staging the trigger. Sometimes, if you stage the trigger to just before firing double action, it may lock because it is not really designed to be operated fired like that. It can be smoothed up a little inside so it doesn't stick though. It is easier to do with a large frame revolver like the 27 as once the cylinder starts to rotate, it spins a little upon it's own weight. This is also why the big wheelie will fire faster double action than say a mid frame or a small frame revolver.
Best-MC

Surplussoldier
August 21, 2006, 07:47 PM
My revolver's short-stroking is similar to the video but with more hammer movement. Yes, that cylinder sure likes spinning. I'll try to get a video up.

As for the shavings, I actually have no complaint. My brother was beside me and he kept complaining of something sharp or hot or something coming at him. This is only when firing magnums. I think it's just burning powder myself. I wasn't sure if burning powder flying out the sides was normal during operation, that's all. It doesn't usually come near me. I notice it is only on the magnum loads this happens. Brass comes out fine.

carebear
August 21, 2006, 09:00 PM
Next range session hve him hold a piece of white paper up a few feet away from the gap. If jagged bits of metal stick in it (or if you here real impact) it might be spitting.

Otherwise it's probably powder.

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