Has anyone heard a rumor that S&W is dropping "The Lock"?


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Balrog
December 9, 2010, 10:14 AM
I have heard that S&W is going to drop the interal lock on its revolvers. Is there any truth to that?

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dashootist
December 9, 2010, 10:15 AM
Yes. There is a snub nose hammerless J frame w/o lock at Buds. I'm waiting for them to come out with a 627PC no lock.

mstrat
December 9, 2010, 10:30 AM
I don't know what their plans or policies are. But when I was shopping for a 642/442, almost all had locks. I happened across a brand NIB 642-1 without a lock. :)

Hondo 60
December 9, 2010, 10:36 AM
This is EXACTLY how internet rumors get started.

Personally, if I want to know something like this I'd check with S&W.

UnTainted
December 9, 2010, 11:11 AM
OMG OMG OMG OMG they're ending the lock!





. . .





j/k no believeie til me seeie

Guillermo
December 9, 2010, 11:12 AM
yes there was a rumor that S&W announced this in 2009. Apparently even Massad Ayoob reported this. At the next SHOT show a Smith exec said that it was a mistake and that it was "not going to happen"

That you heard this is not surprising.

But let's squash the rumor as it was a mistake.

gorenut
December 9, 2010, 11:46 AM
As far as I know, they just produced J-Frames without the locks. I don't know if this applies to any of their other revolvers though.

Sniper X
December 9, 2010, 11:55 AM
I will predict they DO drop the lock....as soon as the guns WITH it are all sold out!

DPris
December 9, 2010, 12:01 PM
They are doing about a dozen guns without locks now, hopefully more will follow.
Denis

Thaddeus Jones
December 9, 2010, 12:02 PM
I agree with Sniper X. Despite the rantings of the fanboys the lock is not here to stay.

Evidently S&W's corporate greed has exceeded its corporate arrogance. As soon as I see a lock free 3" 686+ I will purchase the first new S&W product I've bought in over ten years. :)

I'm sure the usual suspects will be along to chant that the lock is not an issue. :barf:

Guillermo
December 9, 2010, 12:42 PM
I'm sure the usual suspects will be along to chant that the lock is not an issue

you know it

http://i600.photobucket.com/albums/tt82/BillLoeb/typingdeath.gif


I crack me up

PabloJ
December 9, 2010, 12:49 PM
I have heard that S&W is going to drop the interal lock on its revolvers. Is there any truth to that?
If I were them I would make one without lock and key and charge you same price as for one so equipped.

fastbolt
December 9, 2010, 02:14 PM
In one of my armorer classes I asked about this and was told that it isn't going to happen. I was told that S&W, for reason of legal advice, has no plans to remove the ILS from their revolvers that are built with external hammers.

However, I was also told that some model runs without the ILS would likely appear in some of their J-frame models which have internal hammers.

Also, aparently when S&W cleared out their old parts stock of 642-1/442-1 frames and serial numbered them to make those limited runs of new guns in the last couple of years, they sold out to their distributors fast enough to get someone's attention.

Sure, enough, since then we've seen some new J-frame models with internal hammers released without the lock.

I thought someone had posted a picture of a new M&P 340 somewhere on this forum (might've been another one) without the ILS. I think the S&W SKU# is 103072 for the new no-lock M&P 340, but I'd call and confirm before ordering one, just to make sure.

I might order one of the no-lock M&P 340's sometime to complement my existing early-production M&P 340 which came with the ILS. It has given me no trouble related to the ILS in the time I've owned it, having fired upwards of a thousand rounds of mixed standard pressure & +P .38 Spl and various .357 Magnum loads (although I did check and identify a couple of Magnum loads in the beginning which exhibited bullet pull in my gun). I also had to replace another part because of a tolerance issue, but it was not related to the ILS. (S&W would have cheerfully done the repair for free under warranty, but since I'm a revolver armorer I decided to do it myself. ;) )

Like my other J-frames it's been a fine, accurate little 5-shot gun and I've come to use it more often at the range than my other J's and carry it more often than my 642-1's. :) I like the XS front night sight and rounded rear notch as well as the Scandium aluminum frame.

Anyway, I can't count the number of internet rumors I've seen posted on firearms forums about various firearm companies and their products. It can be mind-boggling. I've either asked about them during armorer classes (including recerts), or called or emailed contacts I've made within the various companies as an armorer over the years. The significant amount of time I've been informed the rumors were either completely wrong, or involved something that had occurred but had been completely twisted or taken out of context. Big surprise.

One thing to remember when calling in to a company is that often the people who screen the customer service calls often don't have the knowledge of the repair techs, and the repair techs in turn may not have received the latest info from the engineers about some minor change (or its reason), revision, update or some production issue.

You might be talking to a CS rep who has little background or experience with aspects of a product line, or someone who has spent 2-3 decades with the company and whose responsibilities have, and may still, include other tasks. Just depends. (For example, I've been told that S&W's CS desks can have up to 20-30+ people working incoming lines at any time and that they field calls for ALL products, not just the firearms, and their experience varies quite a bit.)

Sometimes I've been passed up the chain from CS or LE reps to repair techs, and on some occasions to someone in the engineering dept. Just depends on the company and what I'm calling to ask about in my capacity as an armorer.

Sometimes the rumors I've asked about have given them a real chuckle.

Things can always change, though. The answers may be different next year. Who knows?

Just my thoughts.

rscalzo
December 9, 2010, 02:22 PM
If I were them I would make one without lock and key and charge you same price as for one so equipped.

Business is hurting and I doubt they want to run more production lines than necessarty.
they are closing their NH facilities and moving what's left to MA. NH made many parts for the SW rifle lines.

Their stock is down in the toilet so i see anything to cut costs right now.

xXxplosive
December 9, 2010, 02:41 PM
Who wants a stinkin lock anyway........just as bad as Fireing Pin Block...IMO.

fastbolt
December 9, 2010, 03:51 PM
This year has generally seemed to show a lessening of sales compared to last year, which was a really high point for firearms and ammunition sales, overall. Not surprising that sales are reflecting a decline from what was an unusually outstanding period last year, especially with our current economical situation.

You can wade through the firearms sales & business outlook in the investor publication at the company website. http://ir.smith-wesson.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=90977&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1505959&highlight=

It's not surprising they're moving the Thompson/Center Arms acquisition to the headquarters plant in MA starting in Jan 2011. They moved their 3rd gen manufacturing from their headquarters plant to their Maine plant earlier this year to make room at the headquarters plant. They said they brought in some new equipment and did some upgrades at the Houlton, Maine facility. FWIW, aside from handcuffs they also make their .22's and their SW1911's at that plant (they supposedly previously moved most of the SW1911 production to the Maine plant to fill some space). That's also where the PPK and PPK/S-1 are manufactured by Smith & Wesson for Walther by S&W. (BTW, being a Walther product made for Walther by S&W, the PPK & PPK/S-1 have a one year warranty which covers defects in material or workmanship.)

We were also told that moving of the 3rd gen production from the headquarters plant also permitted production expansion of their M&P product lines at their headquarters plant. Since the M&P 15 barrels are now being made by the Thompson/Center Arms part of the company, it makes a certain sense to consolidate capabilities having it done at the company's main manufacturing/forging facility, I'd think.

John Wayne
December 9, 2010, 03:59 PM
If S&W was phasing out the lock, they wouldn't have put it in their newest revolver, the .38 Bodyguard.

Some have argued that the ILS remains in place on the old models because it doesn't adversely affect sales, and that re-tooling would cost money. The Bodyguard .38 (the new one with laser) was designed from the ground up, and they still included the lock.

Not a fan of the lock either. When they made some 442s without it, I thought they'd finally caught on. Unfortunately, it looks like it's around for a while.

Black_Talon
December 9, 2010, 04:16 PM
I haven't heard anything concrete about the S&W lock, but I have heard for sure that Colt is going bankrupt and will no longer be producing handguns for the civilian market.

loadedround
December 9, 2010, 04:44 PM
I have not heard anything either pro or con. However if any S&W executives read this thread, please understand that I will never buy a S&W pistol or revolver that contains an internal lock. As an NRA Instructor, I advise all my students to do the same, plus anyone else who will listen to me.

Guillermo
December 9, 2010, 04:45 PM
However if any S&W executives read this thread

anyone who sticks with a lock that is that poorly designed probably can't read.

fastbolt
December 9, 2010, 04:49 PM
I haven't heard anything concrete about the S&W lock, but I have heard for sure that Colt is going bankrupt and will no longer be producing handguns for the civilian market.

Do you mean Colt's Manufacturing Company LLC and not Colt Defense?

"Heard for sure"? Do you mean from the company?

fastbolt
December 9, 2010, 05:21 PM
I have not heard anything either pro or con. However if any S&W executives read this thread, please understand that I will never buy a S&W pistol or revolver that contains an internal lock.

It's been intimated that there is some disagreement about the necessity of the lock among the people at the company, but exposure to liability concerns will often win out at the end of the day.

As an NRA Instructor, I advise all my students to do the same, plus anyone else who will listen to me.

Does this mean you also advise your students to avoid Taurus and some Ruger revolvers (LCR), as well? Do you recommend they only buy used S&W revolvers, or the current S&W J's being made without the ILS, or other brands which lack an internal lock?

TwoNiner
December 9, 2010, 06:27 PM
I'm with loadedround.

With so many great options from Ruger and old S&Ws out there, who cares what S&W is doing with the lock. What a joke. Until I see new 686 and 629s without it, I'm leaving S&W alone.

Deaf Smith
December 9, 2010, 07:12 PM
If I start seeing Smiths with no barrel shroud and no lock, then I might get interested in them again. And if possible, flash chrome the triggers and hammers again!

Deaf

rscalzo
December 9, 2010, 07:17 PM
We were also told that moving of the 3rd gen production from the headquarters plant also permitted production expansion of their M&P product lines

Third Gen production is gone. They will no longer provide warranty service for cracked frames making their Lifetime Warranty worthless on those models. I spent thirty minutes on the phone with the LE rep. trying to get one of our handguns repaired. No luck. Best they would do is give a discount on an M&P. No use to us. Pretty bad for a handgun with less than five thousand rounds of factory ammo through it.

At one point they told us they would sell them if the special order was big enough but as the price per unit rose way out of a reasonable level, we changed over to Glocks.

I wouldn't touch anything from the ME plant. The PPK's were a nightmare and their 22A has problems.

With the stock down to less than $4 after a high of $20 less than two years ago the stockholders must be demanding cost savings.

JellyJar
December 9, 2010, 07:37 PM
I will never ever buy a S&W revolver with that stupid lock on it.

I probably won't ever even buy a new S&W revolver until and unless they stop using MIN parts. I know they are supposed to be good but I have handled some of these parts and they feel like PLASTIC!!!

Edit: Currently I have two handguns with internal locks on them. A Springfield EMP 40 and my new Ruger New Vaquero Sheriff model. Neither of these locks bother me because they do not and cannot interfere with proper operation and are so unintrusive I never ever notice they are there.

ILS are 99% useless but as long as they are like the ones in the guns I have I don't care. That S&W ILs is an altogether different thing! :banghead:

KBintheSLC
December 10, 2010, 02:42 PM
The concern over liability is becoming antiquated... most states have laws to protect gun makers from the stupidity of certain end-users. I believe there are even federal laws from the W. Bush era that do this as well. S&W is still living in the 90's. My IL-equipped 637 has been unlocked because the design of their IL always left me feeling uneasy, and it serves no purpose that can't be met by my gun safe.

fastbolt
December 10, 2010, 03:54 PM
Good MIM, used in an appropriate application, isn't necessarily a bad thing.

Of course, it depends on the quality of the MIM parts.

S&W has invested a LOT of time, money and effort in achieving a good MIM product.

On another forum right now one of the folks making aftermarket parts for M&P pistols has been discussing a modification of the sear housing block they're doing to install a larger sear plunger & spring. It apparently requires two relatively expensive carbide cutters that only last long enough for them to drill a larger spring & plunger hole in about 5 or 6 sear blocks. MIM can be strong and hard when properly done.

MIM parts also allow for much closer and consistent tolerances, too. Hard fitting old production parts in revolvers could be labor intensive. It also took 7 machines to make old style hammers before MIM.

Armorers are now told that the new MIM hammer sears should drop in hammers almost 90% of the time (although the remaining 10% might require some adjustment to the long and/or short cut on the sear).

Good quality MIM parts haven't turned out to be the end of quality as we know it.

Naturally, QC in production & assembly is another subject.

Black_Talon
December 10, 2010, 04:53 PM
I haven't heard anything concrete about the S&W lock, but I have heard for sure that Colt is going bankrupt and will no longer be producing handguns for the civilian market.


Do you mean Colt's Manufacturing Company LLC and not Colt Defense?

"Heard for sure"? Do you mean from the company?

Naw, it's all a complete joke. It's the same story about Colt that's been going around in every gunshop since the 1980's. Now since the internet it just gets repeated more often.

I strongly suspect the S&W lock rumor is just as accurate as the Colt rumors of yore.....

fastbolt
December 10, 2010, 05:29 PM
Thanks.

I suspected as much ...

;)

Guillermo
December 11, 2010, 02:29 PM
Does this mean you also advise your students to avoid Taurus and some Ruger revolvers (LCR), as well?

those locks do not work on the same axis as the recoil of the gun therefore it is virtually impossible for them to lock by themselves.

While I am not a firearms instructor, I would never suggest to my students to trust their life to a weapon with engineering that is so utterly pathetic.

smallbore
December 11, 2010, 03:22 PM
As long as there are states with rigid compliency standards, I believe S&W will continue to make J frames w/locks.

CajunBass
December 12, 2010, 07:16 AM
Has anyone heard a rumor that S&W is dropping "The Lock"?

Every other day, and twice on Sunday.

CSA 357
December 12, 2010, 06:02 PM
little too late for me i stick with the old ones clinton realy killed them with this!

Black Butte
December 12, 2010, 07:03 PM
I could live with the lock if S&W put them behind the hammer spur like Taurus, but there is no way I'm buying any of their revolvers with the big, fat, ugly hole drilled right into the frame. If S&W refuses to deliver what consumers are asking for, then they deserve to suffer reduced sales.

Deanimator
December 12, 2010, 07:54 PM
Who cares???

Dan Wesson is going to start selling .357 revolvers again!!!

New Dan Wessons (http://cz-usa.com/assets/files/CZ-USA_2011_Product_Catalog.pdf)

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