Model 58-2 Sherlock Holmes critique.


July 7, 2008, 02:28 PM
What we've got is a 28-2 that shells stick in the charge holes and is sometimes sticky when opening the cylinder.

I'm guessing the charge holes are just rough – the 28-2 is smack in the middle of the 'Nam era Bangor Punta Dark Times. Loaded rounds or new Starline drop in and fall out so I'm guessing the sticking couldn't be related to crud from .38 specials. Also I'm guessing a chamber reamer wouldn't do any good as the charge holes are likely at or over spec based on the ease of inserting / removing unfired rounds. Enthusiastic bronze brushing hasn't produced any results so I'm guessing the next step is JB polish / mop / drill motor.

There’s a teensy bit of run out on the extractor rod that doesn't do anything perceptible to cylinder rotation – it's as smooth as any I own. However, could it possibly be enough run out to sometimes put a minor bind on the cylinder release? It doesn't stick all the time.

In fact, the brass sticks with sufficient tenacity that I wonder if the runout wasn't caused by a former owner beating on the extractor rod with a boot heel – I was sorely tempted myself. Too bad we'll never know 'cause the gun can't talk. If it could, I'd have a few questions.

Anyhow, does the rough chamber diagnosis seem plausible and the JB a reasonable try? ( didn’t see an equivalent to the Brownell's "Flex-Hone" for .357) I can live with the occasional sticking releasing the cylinder, it's the hole I'm getting in my hand from pushing on a stubborn extractor rod that's bothering me. Kuhnhausen says I don’t have the facilities to attack the runout and I'm not seeing a need to do so – it appears unrelated to the brass sticking.

I should mention it's not ammo related – there was a 686 along for the ride and it didn’t suffer from the 28-2's problems.

...and Fuff, if the answer to the above is in the Standard Catalog, I'll eat the target grips on the 28-2. Thanks to my bride for getting me a set of licorice grip panels. ;)

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July 7, 2008, 02:35 PM
so I'm guessing the sticking couldn't be related to crud from .38 specials.You guessed wrong!

Unfired rounds have the bullet crimped in, and the front of the case is rounded slightly and smaller then a fired .357 hull.
They completely clear the ".38 crud ring" until they are fired and the crimp opens up and the case expands.

Case expansion from firing is what makes them tight, and the "crud ring", if present, raises pressure even further because the case neck can't expand enough to release the bullet.

Get yourself a cordless drill, .40 S&W bronze brush, solvent, and scrub the chambers really really well.

BTW: It would very unusual to find even a Banger Punta S&W with chambers so rough the emptys won't extract.


July 7, 2008, 03:11 PM

Good news and something I can do easily. I wasn't looking forward to the alternative. That applies to the virgin Starline .357 as well - they don't have any crimp?

Old Fuff
July 7, 2008, 03:20 PM
The chambers on the Model 27 and 28 were "supposed" to be burnished.... :banghead:

Anyway the Brownell hone for .38 will work in a .357 Magnum, and I would try that. Be sure you order the honing oil to go with it.

Rcmodel could be right, and that's good for a start, but I use a stainless steel brush FOR THE CHAMBERS ONLY! Never the bore.

JB Paste is designed to remove lead and copper fouling, if the chambers are really rough you will be polishing forever.

A real longshot would be that the I.D. of the yoke's barrel needs to be reamed because the spring is sticking. But this would happen even if the chambers weren't loaded. So we come back to the chambers again.

No, in this case Standard Catalog of Smith & Wesson won't help.

Also, check the cylinder for end shake. That can make the cylinder hard to unlatch.

As a last resort you might call S&W and see if they would fix it under warrantee.

July 7, 2008, 03:29 PM
Thanks Fuff.

Somehow I didn't find the .38/.357 hone when I was searching before - maybe I was using the term "flex hone" which only applies to their shotgun hones (which I have used to excellent effect).

If it was a snake, it would've bit me on the backside:
Color me embarrassed.

I've got most of the can of their hone oil left over from "Project 1949 L. C. Smith".

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