Gun inspection?


April 8, 2013, 02:58 PM
Hi guys. I bought a used S&W 686 the other day and Im waiting for it to arrive at my local gun shop. I was thinking about having them do an inspection on it.

I called them up and they said it is $60. I asked the guy what exactly it is that they do and he said :

test fire

The gun shop is Bob's Gun Shop in Norfolk VA.

Anyone know if they have a good gunsmith there?

Is $60 a good price to pay?

This is my first revolver so I dont really know what to look for. I bought the gun from a very reputable seller on Gunbroker.


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Old Shooter
April 8, 2013, 03:11 PM
If it's a new gun I'd say it is a waste of your money.

If it's a used gun and the gun shop is reputable and you feel comfortable with them, It may be worth it for your peace of mind.

If it was me, I'd just clean it, give it a good once over using the revolver check list and then go shoot it.

But that's just me with 60 years of playing with guns, you need to make the call.

April 8, 2013, 03:13 PM
Sounds high to me.

1. I clean my own.
2. Minor service is a no brainer, past that your out of the quoted price range.
3. What is to adjust. If the sights are off - center them and go from there.
Anything else see #2.
4. Why are you paying someone to shoot your gun. A good cleaning and
inspection will tell you if something is not right.

There are some good "stickys" on this topic on the forum. Revolvers are pretty simple. Sounds to me like your paying a lot for something you can either do for yourself or don't need. Another option, got any friends who are shooters who could check it out?

April 8, 2013, 10:14 PM
You can check the gun yourself if you are so inclined.

April 8, 2013, 10:30 PM
If it's a new gun I'd say it is a waste of your money.I'd say it's a waste of money if it's an old used gun too.

It is what it is.
You bought it sight unseen.
You need to learn to inspect it and clean it yourself!
And $60 could be better spent on cleaning supplies and The Bible of S&W inspection & repair.

If it needs work you can't do yourself?
S&W's warranty will do it free.


April 8, 2013, 10:39 PM
what these guys said.... the four services offered - clean, service, adjust, and test fire? the middle two are meaningless. The gun will either work fine or it won't and there is nothing to service or adjust on a revolver or pistol that will make any difference. It either needs repair or it doesn't - there's precious little in the middle that is at all meaningful... A dealer friend of mine told me that of all the guns he takes in on trade, less that 10% look like they've have more than a couple of boxes fired through them, and that's handguns. Most centerfire rifles see even less use. Clean it and shoot it and you'll most likely be very happy...

April 8, 2013, 11:08 PM
clean, service, adjust, and test fire? the middle two are meaningless.So are the first & last, depending on the skill or honesty of the gunsmith.

We have an old gunsmith here in town who has been in business for about 40 years now.

He cleans an OCD friends guns for $40 bucks.
Then my OCD friend brings every gun he cleans over to me to see what he failed to clean!

And I always find a few things he failed to clean!!

As for 'test fire?"
You do that the first six shots you shoot in a S&W 686.

It either shoots 6 times & you can eject the empty's?
Or it didn't, and you can't.

If you can't?
S&W will fix it free.


April 9, 2013, 11:25 AM
if you have concerns about the gun I would have addressed an inspection period with the seller prior to payment. Smith has a lifetime warranty. If the shop finds something wrong with the gun it is going to be $60 plus the cost of repair. If there is something wrong with the revolver you are going to notice it for free. Cleaning a revolver could take as little as 5 minutes. Most used guns are cleaned prior to sale.

April 9, 2013, 11:59 AM
If they did the four things they listed and your noted inspection as well - I'd say $60 represents 60 bucks an hour/1 hour minimum and would pop for it if you trust them to be able to note any shortcomings in performance or safety.

Without a competent inspection to put your mind at ease (if that's where you're going with the inspection) I'd say you may well be using up 60 worth of their shop's time and ammo but don't see the value to you.

Inspection (competent and qualified).... maybe
No inspection.... not so much

April 9, 2013, 07:17 PM
Biggest issue which may or may not effect function with current S&W revolvers it the barrel alignment. I've only seen a couple new Smiths in the last year that were not noticeably over/under-torqued.

April 9, 2013, 07:33 PM
Gun Inspection.
Yes it's a good price for the specified services.
No, you don't need it.
Fire it, break it in if necessary.
Gun scrubber, CLP, and it should be fine.
If you still have problems consider a warranty claim or asking for a refund of some kind.
No warranty from seller? No refund due to "as is" buy? Send it to S&W. The shipping cost is outrageous, but the work will be perfect.

April 9, 2013, 07:55 PM
mrbladedude, with a used handgun it's money well spent..

April 9, 2013, 08:57 PM
That will be the easiest $60 they'll make all day. :rolleyes:
Read the Revolver Checkout stickie, get some cleaning supplies (you are going to need them anyway) and spend a few minutes getting to know your new revolver.
As several have pointed out, if there is something wrong, it will be obvious, and S&W will take care of it, free of charge.

Derry 1946
April 9, 2013, 09:24 PM
It's all good advice. If you're going to own and operate a revolver, you're going to need to know the basics of its maintenance anyway. Start now and save the $60. The Internet links above are a fine start, and there are many good books on the subject. A good revolver is a masterpiece of elegant design that makes it simple to operate and maintain, and very durable. Can't go wrong with any S&W revolver. Enjoy your new old firearm.

April 9, 2013, 10:36 PM
If he's doing a FULL check inspection as outlined by Mr. Jerry Kuhnhausen in his popular S&W shop manual, then I would say its probably worth the $60, assuming he's a good revolver smith, but for less than $60, you could get the Jerry Kuhnhausen book and the correct tools to do the job yourself if you are so inclined.

Black Knight
April 10, 2013, 07:57 PM
Just saw the original post. PM sent.

April 10, 2013, 11:10 PM
Thanks for all the replies. I have decided to skip the inspection and just go test fire the gun myself. If there are any problems I will just send the gun to S & W for repairs. Gona prob buy a holster with the $60 instead. Or maybe a belt. Choices choices

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