340PD cylinder erosion - THR

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Old November 8, 2014, 06:07 AM   #1
Join Date: July 24, 2003
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 283
340PD cylinder erosion

The titanium cylinder on my friend's 340PD is getting some weird erosion on it. He says he's only shot it 250 times and that he has NEVER fired loads lighter than 110 grains like the billboard on the barrel warns. Supposing he's not lying, I can only assume the strength treatment isn't quite up to snuff on this one. I'm thinking I should just tell him to send it back to S&W and see if he can get them to put a new cylinder in it?
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Old November 8, 2014, 10:09 AM   #2
XD 45acp
Join Date: November 27, 2011
Location: Chester VA
Posts: 393
If that is indeed down in the cylinder metal, S&W needs to know about it. Looks like the grain of the metal isn't right. Shooting the eroded cylinder chambers may start bullets to shave as they start into the forcing cone, spitting metal to both sides. I'd definitely send it back.
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Old November 8, 2014, 02:05 PM   #3
Join Date: January 3, 2005
Posts: 4,867
I sold a low round count PD360 to a friend six-seven years ago.
After he shot it a bit, his developed the same issue.
He contacted S&W, they sent him a shipping label. He sent it in, they replaced the cylinder and it's been fine ever since.

May I assume that this is an older 340?
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Old November 8, 2014, 08:18 PM   #4
Join Date: October 18, 2007
Location: Sterling, VA
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"he has NEVER fired loads lighter than 110 grains" or he has never fired 110 grain rounds?
Anything less than an N-Frame just doesnt feel right....
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Old November 8, 2014, 10:53 PM   #5
Old Fuff
Join Date: December 24, 2002
Location: Arizona
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Open the cylinder and look at the barrel's rear face. Do you see any tool marks on the barrel that match the marks you noticed on the cylinder? If so, I know what the answer to the problem is.
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Old November 12, 2014, 12:40 AM   #6
Join Date: July 24, 2003
Location: Birmingham, AL
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I meant he never fired 110 grain loads OR anything lighter. He says the lowest he's gone is 125, and only a few times.

Anyway, he called S&W and they sent him a shipping label and it's on the way back for a new, free cylinder. Just to complete the thread for anyone's future reference.
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Old November 12, 2014, 01:03 AM   #7
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Same thing happened to my 340's cylinder when I bought it 10? years ago. I had only fired 50 rounds of 125s when I noticed pitting from erosion. S&W replaced the cylinder for free. I shot another box of 125s that again caused erosion just not as bad as the first box in the original cylinder. After evaluating the situation I came to the conclusion the coolness of owning Ti Sc flyweight .357 had worn off and a PF-9 was a better option. I sold the S&W.
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Old November 12, 2014, 09:37 AM   #8
Join Date: October 15, 2004
Posts: 606
Any chance he cleaned the cylinder face with an abrasive?
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Old November 12, 2014, 10:31 AM   #9
Join Date: February 18, 2007
Location: central MN
Posts: 973
I have over 1000 rounds, (mostly handloaded .357 lite) through my very old 340pd, and the face of the cylinder still looks like new.

Is the flame guard still in place and is there any damage to the top strap?

Contact S&W for a free fix.
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Old November 12, 2014, 09:49 PM   #10
Join Date: May 27, 2008
Posts: 448
I have a little over 2500 rounds through mine. Being in the habit of using Hoppes #9 on all my guns I did the same with my 340PD. I'm pretty sure the solvent must have chemically stripped some of the protective coating off the face.

Yes, I should have not assumed that hoppes would be ok for everything, as the manual does not have it listed as being ok, but rather recommends "Hoppes Elite" for cleaning. Your friends choice of solvent could possibly contribute to this problem.

The gun is no beauty queen, but I've had no jacket fragments spitting from the BC gap. At some point I'll probably swap a stainless steel cylinder that's milled for moonclips into this gun. I carry this gun A LOT! Shoot it at the end of about every other range session... just enough to stay proficient with it.

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Old November 14, 2014, 04:38 AM   #11
Join Date: July 24, 2003
Location: Birmingham, AL
Posts: 283
That's exactly the same kind of erosion and S&W themselves admitted to my friend it's caused by flame cutting into the titanium and not Hoppes. They are replacing his cylinder. They will likely yours as well.

Maybe there was just a certain number of them whose titanium wasn't quite up to snuff as far as hardness?
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Old Yesterday, 03:30 PM   #12
Join Date: November 17, 2014
Posts: 15
My 340 looks really good right now, but I'll file the info away for future reference. Thanks guys.
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