Smith & Wesson model 41- Problems


December 2, 2007, 09:12 AM
I recently purchased a used .22, it is a tack driver. But it has 2 problems. :( Some types of ammo (Yellow Jackets) @ times jam before entering the chamber, and (Thunderbolt.. To name one) I get a lot of mis fires (No BOOM) I have tried numerous other ammo types; but with the same results. Is It time to send this pistol to the DR. Thanks....

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December 2, 2007, 12:16 PM
My 41 is, like yours, extremely accurate and, like yours and most others, somewhat ammo sensitive. You just need to keep searching to you find the brands it likes best. I believe the factory tests them with CCI standard velocity. I have good luck with these and also with CCI mini mags and WW Super-X hollow points.

Be sure your chamber is scrubbed clean (brushed) before trying new ammo. I have read that some match shooters apply one drop of oil to the top round of the mag every few mags. I have not found this necessary.

December 2, 2007, 01:06 PM
The 41 doesn't like cheap ammo and ammo that has too low a velocity.

Also, don't use high velocity either, will beat the gun up unnecessarily.

December 2, 2007, 01:30 PM
I shot 41's with 5th. Army AMTU.
IMO: There is no more reliable .22 pistol ever made.

The model 41 was designed from the get-go to function with total reliability using 40 grain RN standard velocity match grade ammo.
It should be 110% reliable with that ammo.

There should never be a need to oil the top round in the magazine to get one to work.

As for Yellow-Jackets, lots of .22 pistols won't feed them reliably.

As for Thunder-Bolts, if there is worse .22 ammo being made today, I haven't run across it yet!
I had a brick of it last year that wouldn't go through the receiver mag tube hole of a 62A Winchester pump, a Browning semi-auto that choked on it, and a 10/22 Ruger that jammed occasionally with it!
And that is just unheard of with any of these guns!
The case rims were oval shaped on about half of them.

I had a lot of mis-fires in every gun I tried it in.

I'd suggest a through cleaning of the slide. Blast out the firing pin with brake cleaner and re-lube lightly with Rem-Oil. Same for the slide rails.
Be sure you oil or grease the hammer / slide interface where the polished cocking surfaces are.

Clean the chamber with a bronze bore brush & solvent spun in a drill.

Then try some good quality 40 grain ammo.
If all that don't work, you may have a problem.

December 2, 2007, 02:17 PM
My 41 likes CCI standard and mini mags but not hollowpoints and loves Dynapoint Winchesters for hollowpoint.

Truncated point bullets such as the Yellow Jacket and Thunderbolts do not generally nfeed well through most S&W auto .22s

December 2, 2007, 02:22 PM
My experience with model 41s (three of them) is that they definitely don't like the El Cheapo and oddball ammo worth a hoot - but shoots like a laser with most decent stuff.

December 2, 2007, 02:26 PM
Heed the advice in the above threads. Get some 40gr. standard velocity,
non-Remington ammo.

December 2, 2007, 02:28 PM
The Rem Green is absolute poison in my 41.

I use CCI exclusively and haven't had any more trouble.

December 2, 2007, 02:31 PM
Get some 40gr. standard velocity,
non-Remington ammo.


My 41 is a superb target pistol, but the ONLY ammo it likes is CCI standard.

December 2, 2007, 02:55 PM
- but shoots like a laser with most decent stuff.

Incredibly accurate statement!!!!

My mdl 41 (5-1/2" bull bbl) does NOT like Eley Match, at all. Why. . .????

Winchester ammo. . . it really likes.

Federal ammo. . . any of it. . . . shoots like a laser.

December 2, 2007, 08:23 PM
It time to send this pistol to the DR.

Probably not. Give your gun and magazines a good cleaning. Lightly oil the guns wear points. Stop using 36 grain ammo, especially the cheap high velocity stuff.

Get some good standard velocity 40 grain ammo. Mine runs well with CCI SV. If you really need to save on ammo costs, Federal Auto Match seems to work well also, and comes in bulk packs for around $11/325 rounds.

Good Luck...


December 3, 2007, 12:12 AM
Thank you ALL!!!! :)40 Grain ammo here I Come!!! I will pick up CCI, and Federal tomorrow. I have three .22 S&W Revolvers, that will chew up the:cuss: Thunderbolt and YellowJackets...

Steve C
December 3, 2007, 12:20 AM
If the ammo doesn't fire check the rim to see if it has a good dent in it from the firing pin. If it does, then its an ammo problem. One or two misfires out of 50 is pretty common when using Tunderbolt ammo or for that matter any cheap bulk ammo in my experience. CCI is some of the most reliable ammo you can buy with very rare misfires. Match ammo that runs $4 to $8 a box of 50 is also very reliable.

December 3, 2007, 09:18 AM
The last time I talked to a Smith Rep. about the Model 41, I remember him mentioning that CCI Pistol Match is what the factory uses to test target the guns.
Anyway, I have had very good luck with CCI standard velocity and mini mags.

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