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S&W Model 64 Question

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by RatDrall, Mar 1, 2010.

  1. RatDrall

    RatDrall Well-Known Member

    I ordered a S&W Model 64 from J&G Sales today. They said it is a no lock model, with the hammer mounted firing pin. I have a few questions:

    1. Were there any S&W Model 64s made that cannot handle .38 special +P?

    2. What will I need to do to convert it back to allow single action as well as double? I believe I only need to replace the hammer, if so will that be a drop in part or require fitting?

    3. Anyone else pick up one of these guns, if so how is it? I got the very good plus condition and I'm hoping I get a nice one...

  2. wlewisiii

    wlewisiii Well-Known Member

    1) No.

    2) Replace the hammer. www.brownells.com had them last time I checked. Pretty much drop-in from reading Kuhnhausen.

    3) I was going to get one from them, but my local FFL popped up with one that was still DA/SA and equal in price (with shipping and transfer fee added in) so I went with that instead.

    Excellent shooting piece. For me, so far, it likes WWB 125 gr JHP +P the best but I should be getting some more Buffalo Bore "FBI" load tomorrow to see how those stack up. My usual cheap target load, Magtech 158 gr LRN standard pressure, doesn't group as well and I've heard from other 64 owners that they don't like lead as much as the Model 10 they're based on.

    Oh, Flitz polish and a soft cotton rag are your best friends if you want a pretty shiny stainless steel revolver :)


  3. y5e06

    y5e06 Well-Known Member

    heh, I got two from J&G. one was the hand select nicest round but versions and the other was the lowest end square butt. I really dig the round butt however I wished I would have gotten a little nicer square butt one. A little tweaking and the square butt is getting better. A friend and myself both have two apiece from J&G and use them for IDPA. great fun and you can get a real good deal if you select the nicer options.

    I polished the round butt, added hogues, and it is now a knock out
  4. Oro

    Oro Well-Known Member

    Sometimes yes, sometimes no.

    If possible, find a matched pair of hammer/trigger assemblies taken out of the same gun. They will be properly mated together. A single unit may or may not match to a random other unit.
  5. W.E.G.

    W.E.G. Well-Known Member

    I "dropped-in" a DA/SA hammer, and dry-fired it a few times.

    ...and this happened.




  6. Trebor

    Trebor Well-Known Member

    Unless you have worked on Smith revolvers before I wouldn't try to convert a revolver back DA/SA capability yourself. At a minimum buy and read Kuhansen's shop manual first then decide if you want to try the job.
  7. RatDrall

    RatDrall Well-Known Member

    As far as the hammer swap goes, at one time I owned 3 seperate K-frames. All had the frame mounted firing pin design, and the hammers were rotated between the 3 easily.

    I'm gathering that it is more complicated for the guns with the hammer mounted firing pin?

    How much should it cost for a gunsmith to do the swap?

    Thanks :D
  8. GrandmasterB

    GrandmasterB Well-Known Member

    Do you really need single action on a 4" fixed sight revolver? I seem to shoot all of my revolvers double action 99% of the time, especially the fixed sight ones. I have a 64 that I converted to DAO because of this. Try it and you just might like it the way it is, and never miss that single action functionality.
  9. Thaddeus Jones

    Thaddeus Jones Well-Known Member

    Congrats on your J&G model 64!!

    I love mine. It cleaned up very nicely and is a tack driver. Trigger that rival my Performance Center revolvers!

    I couldn't be more pleased with mine. Enjoy yours! TJ
  10. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    Heck yes!

    I wouldn't own one without it!

  11. RatDrall

    RatDrall Well-Known Member

    Probably not, but I like it for messing around shooting at very very long distances, or making one hole groups at 25 yards.
  12. Old Shooter

    Old Shooter Well-Known Member

    I would have expected the hammer/trigger interface to be the area that would require fitting, the hammer nose issue is a real eye-opener. Learn something new every day.
  13. W.E.G.

    W.E.G. Well-Known Member

    This type of gun tends to be nominated when the subject is training and the students are completely green shooters, or less-motivated shooters.

    I've often heard it dictated that DAO is the way to go for all defensive revolver shooting.

    Let me tell you, that DAO trigger on the Model 64 is SOME KIND OF HEAVY.
    In fact, it is so heavy that I would expect some weaker persons to not be able to hold any kind of sight picture, and still manipulate the trigger.

    Having the ability to cock the hammer at least provides some possibility that the weak-handed shooter will come away from the training event with some assurance that she can actually operate the weapon.

    Everybody has to start somewhere.

    ...and please spare me the sermons about the "evils" of cocking the hammer in a defensive situation.

    Its a trade-off of risk that some people may just have to accept.
  14. OldCavSoldier

    OldCavSoldier Well-Known Member

    Try backing out the mainspring screw about three-quarters of a turn...should "lighten" it up for you some.
  15. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator

    This really is a poor way to do a trigger job on a revolver. There are several things you can do to improve the pull, including lighter springs, but the strain screw is NOT an adjustment. It needs to be tight.

  16. 351 WINCHESTER

    351 WINCHESTER Well-Known Member

    If it were mine I would save myself some money and just learn to shoot dao.
  17. jad0110

    jad0110 Well-Known Member

    Please don't lighten up the pull by doing this. For one thing, once the screw is loosened even a little bit, it can easily back out further on it's own and cause light strikes. Fine if it is a range toy, not so good if you rely on the gun for serious purposes. Secondly, as the screw is loosened it causes the mainspring to straighten out and become longer as the tension on it is reduced. If it gets too loose, it can actually lengthen too much, pushing the hammer/mainspring stirrup into the underside of the hammer, to a point where the mainspring can actually snap the stirrup clean off. Granted, you would probably get a warning of this impending failure: as the tension on the mainspring is loosened, the pull gets lighter to a point, and at some point it actually starts getting heavier. Perhaps even heavier than with it tightened all the way down. This is the most likely point of failure, but honestly the gun wasn't designed to be operated with a partially slack mainspring, so I simply wouldn't go there.

    The myth that the strain screw on a S&W revolver is a trigger pull adjustment screw is VERY common, so I don't mean to bash or impune anyone. But people need to know the truth of the matter. That screw should be tightened up all the way, and it wouldn't hurt to put a dab of blue locktite on the threads, especially on a defensive gun.


    Back to the OP,

    Most of the time, the hammer assembly is NOT a drop in part. Some fitting will likely be required, but it is a pretty straightforward job for a reputable gunsmith to perform. I'm guessing $50 would do it, plus the cost of the part.

    But at some point, it just isn't worth it given the price you paid.
  18. mgh

    mgh Well-Known Member

    I got one of the J&G Model 64's several months back, one of other the very good plus's. The trigger on mine is not heavy, it's just right. Accurate. It's my bedside gun, I don't need single action on it. I take it to the range every few weeks and practice with carry ammo. I'm very pleased with mine.
  19. RatDrall

    RatDrall Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the replies guys, I am dying to get my hands on the Model 64.

    I am going to leave it DA only for a while, spend money on ammo instead and decide later to convert it or not.

    As far as backing out the mainspring screw, I've had two friends with old S&W revolvers that were "broken and won't fire" because someone backed out that screw, and it kept backing out until the hammer was hitting too weak to fire the rounds.

    As far as the heavy trigger pull, I've owned a few K-frames, of all generations. The last generation of model 65, with the two piece barrel, had the heaviest trigger pull of them all, and even that one was smooth so even though it was heavy it was still quite easy to shoot well in double action.
  20. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Well-Known Member

    It should be remembered that when these guns were built, skilled assemblers checked, and if necessary made minor adjustments to the lockwork. Or sometimes they simply switched out a part to get a better fit. If you exchange a part for one that was originally put in another gun you need to check out everything - including if the hammer nose (firing pin) is hitting the frame, which it shouldn't but sometimes does. The front end of the firing pin is supposed to be a close fit in the hole in the frame so that primers won't extrude back into the hole and hang up the gun, but under some circumstances a good thing can be too good.

    If you order a hammer, bt sure you specify that you want a hammer assembly, with the internal parts - including the hammer nose - or you may get a stripped hammer.

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