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Old July 9, 2014, 10:52 PM   #76
mikemyers
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Malamute, if you play the video, you'll see exactly what I'm trying to describe. Will wanted to put in a different rebound spring, but the ones in the kit from Wilson were much longer than mine - not to mention the main spring was shorter than mine, and had a different shape. Very strange. I already have a call in to Wilsoncombat, as Will had several spring kits, but they were all the same, and none of them matched mine. Either they sent Sebastian Ammo the wrong parts in the kits, or ???? Doesn't make any sense.

The gun is MUCH better than before Will started on it, and it's much, much smoother than before.

I will be back in Fellsmere in a month, and can go back to Will, having bought whatever parts it might need, but I feel like a blind person trying to describe something I can't see.


Oops, just read your response. I will see if I have an old Youtube account that nobody goes to, and try to post it there. That will make it smaller.
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Old July 9, 2014, 11:03 PM   #77
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This should play better - it's now on Youtube....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUAS...ature=youtu.be
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Old July 9, 2014, 11:36 PM   #78
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Yes, that looks like a weak rebound spring.

If you tinker with the main spring screw tension, you may find a sweet spot that it works in. I'd guess someone shortened or replaced the rebound spring in tuning the trigger pull, and likely used the main spring tension screw as part of the work. I'd go through the sweet spot and see how much turning of the screw until its good, then bad again, then set it back towards the heavier tension end of the sweet spot a little so its in that good spot. It should work, but in the long run, the main spring screw may back out after some use. You could use a touch of locktite blue or nail polish to lock the main spring tension screw once you find the good spot if you don't want to mess with it any more.

Getting a standard or close to it rebound spring may get it so you can put full tension on the main spring, or you can use a spring kit like your guy there has. If it isn't a self protection gun you may be happy with it with the screw not fully tensioned if the trigger pull suits you. Your call on that.
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Old July 9, 2014, 11:55 PM   #79
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I just looked up the rebound springs, they use the same ones in different size Smiths. If anyone knows the color codes on them, I can see what I have, I'd send you one in the mail if you'd like, or you can go with the spring kit your local guy has.

This is the Wolff page for Smith revolver springs. I used one of their main springs for a while, but liked the factory spring better. My main concern is reliability under all conditions. A good pull can still be achieved with stock springs of the internals are hand polished inside. I work them to 600 or 1200 grit wet or dry paper in glass.

http://www.gunsprings.com/index.cfm?...s&cID=3&mID=58
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Old July 10, 2014, 01:03 AM   #80
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The shop in Fellsmere had three of the Wilsoncombat kits:

http://www.midwayusa.com/product/365...-w-k-l-n-frame

The kit came with three springs, that were longer than what came out of the gun. Supposedly they were 12, 13, and 14 pound springs. However, the main spring that came in the kit was much shorter than the original, had a strange shape, and didn't look like it was made for my gun. We decided it wouldn't work, and it's still in Fellsmere. The original main spring stayed in the gun.

I just checked - the 12 pound rebound spring is now in the gun. The 12 and 14 pound springs are still in the package, and my original spring (which Will tried to shorten thinking that would fix the binding problem) is in my parts bag. I won't put it back into the gun because it's been cut.

As to the main spring, when the screw at the bottom of the frame was loosened up all the way, the gun bound up worst, as if two parts were hitting each other when they shouldn't. Tightening up the main spring screw helped, and as instructed up above, tightening the screw all the way seems to make the gun work the best - but the video shows what is still wrong.

For whatever it's worth, if I slide open the cylinder, and hold the release lever in the open position, it makes no change in whatever is binding.

For my purposes, target shooting, the gun works better now than ever before. It certainly does not have a light trigger pull - in my very inexperienced opinion.

You guys know far more than I do, but my gut feeling is that two surfaces are touching in a way that they shouldn't, and something inside the mechanism is binding. I've been searching all over for an animation of how all these parts work together, but every link I find is a dead end.
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Old July 10, 2014, 01:19 AM   #81
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I think he was going the wrong direction, you don't need a weaker rebound spring, but a stronger one to balance the main spring. From Wolfs site, they say the factory rebound spring is an 18 lb, and their kits have 2 lb increments going down. The ones in the link I posted showed them in 12-14 and 16 lbs.

What you described is what I expected. The reason the trigger is hanging up is that the rebound spring isn't balanced out with the main spring.

When the main spring tension screw is backed out, it changes the angle and length of the spring and it doesn't work well at all. Using it to "adjust" the action is a two edged sword. It can be done within limits, but too much and things go way wrong as to function, as you discovered.

I'd start with the heaviest rebound spring you have, and mess with the mainspring tension screw from all the way in, to backing it out 1/4 turn at a time, and seeing if it gets decent (trigger doesn't hang up at all in return) at some point, then keep going past that point to see what the good zone is. I'd keep it in the heavier end of that zone for best functional reliability.

Does your factory rebound spring have a color? Smith color codes springs for different weights/applications.

Some people use a rebound spring tool, I've not had much trouble just using a small screwdriver to get it started, then pushed the last bit into place once started.
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Old July 10, 2014, 01:20 AM   #82
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I think your problem is Will the "gunsmith."
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Old July 10, 2014, 01:21 AM   #83
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Single action is definitely not always most accurate. I shoot bullseye with S&W revolvers and I shoot double action in slow, timed, and rapid fire. None of the top shooters in my league shoot single action.
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Old July 10, 2014, 01:24 AM   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malamute View Post
I think he was going the wrong direction, you don't need a weaker rebound spring, but a stronger one to balance the main spring. From Wolfs site, they say the factory rebound spring is an 18 lb, and their kits have 2 lb increments going down. The ones in the link I posted showed them in 12-14 and 16 lbs.



What you described is what I expected. The reason the trigger is hanging up is that the rebound spring isn't balanced out with the main spring.



When the main spring tension screw is backed out, it changes the angle and length of the spring and it doesn't work well at all. Using it to "adjust" the action is a two edged sword. It can be done within limits, but too much and things go way wrong as to function, as you discovered.



I'd start with the heaviest rebound spring you have, and mess with the mainspring tension screw from all the way in, to backing it out 1/4 turn at a time, and seeing if it gets decent (trigger doesn't hang up at all in return) at some point, then keep going past that point to see what the good zone is. I'd keep it in the heavier end of that zone for best functional reliability.



Does your factory rebound spring have a color? Smith color codes springs for different weights/applications.



Some people use a rebound spring tool, I've not had much trouble just using a small screwdriver to get it started, then pushed the last bit into place once started.

I would NEVER attempt to use the strain screw to tube a trigger. You can use a lightened mainspring or even modify the mainspring(which is what I do) and then use lighter rebound springs. You can get a very decent trigger without doing much else. I also polish a few things but I don't usually go crazy with that because it's not needed to shoot great scores.
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Old July 10, 2014, 01:36 AM   #85
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Thanks for weighing in with your experience.

Did you read the rest of the posts? I don't know if you're ragging on me, if so, please read more.
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Old July 10, 2014, 01:37 AM   #86
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Originally Posted by Malamute View Post
...... What you described is what I expected. The reason the trigger is hanging up is that the rebound spring isn't balanced out with the main spring........... I'd start with the heaviest rebound spring you have, ........ Does your factory rebound spring have a color? Smith color codes springs for different weights/applications........

The heaviest spring I have is the one from Wilsoncombat marked 14, meaning it's supposedly a 14 pound spring.

None of these springs, nor the one that came out of the gun, has any color - they all just look like bare steel.

I guess this will be the plan for tomorrow - not tonight. I'm way too tired. Everything you say makes sense, and I have no way of knowing that the "original spring" really was the "original spring" as I bought the gun from a friend who doesn't think he changed anything, but this was ages ago when he used it.

My intuition says that this isn't the problem, that somewhere, somehow, two parts are binding when they shouldn't, but maybe the problem all along has been the spring, and the 12 pound spring now in the gun is a lot less than the 18 pound spring that you say is the stock configuration.....
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Old July 10, 2014, 01:42 AM   #87
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Sorry if this seems like a hi-jack. I have not read the whole thread word for word, but a question came up in my mind.
What attract people to SA revolvers? Is one reason perhaps that they ''might'' be more accurate than DA revolvers? Or can it be the looks? Or is it nostalgia?
Are a DA revolver in SA mode not just as accurate as a SA revolver?
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Old July 10, 2014, 01:46 AM   #88
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Originally Posted by David E View Post
I think your problem is Will the "gunsmith."

No, my problem is very much NOT with Will. He never said he was a gunsmith; he runs the gunshop in Fellsmere, and had just rebuilt an older S&W revolver that worked beautifully.

I brought him a gun with problems, and he made it better, but not perfect. He is still trying to find out what was wrong.

Then too, he had three brand new spring kits for my gun, from Wilsoncombat, and all three had a main spring that was nothing like the mainspring in my gun. He checked their website, and according to Wilsoncombat, that was supposed to be for my gun.... I will call Wilson again tomorrow - maybe I can reach someone.


Will was willing (no pun intended) to do what I wanted very much - work on the gun in front of me, so I'd learn what was involved. The only gunsmith I found in Miami so far refused to do that.

Thanks to Will, I'm reasonably confident (but still very concerned that I might be in over my head) that I can disassemble everything, and re-assemble it.

Also, the gun is MUCH better now than it was before he worked on it. The binding, or whatever it is, is annoying, but it was so "gritty" before that shooting double-action would have been impossible for me.
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Old July 10, 2014, 07:47 AM   #89
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Originally Posted by mikemyers
The problem is when you cock the trigger, and release it slowly, gradually letting the hammer return - you can feel one spot where things seem to "catch". At first the gun hung-up there, and the hammer action got bound up - the slightest pressure fixed it, but something was "catching". Will took it apart again, but everything looks good. Maybe this was part of the original problem, but I don't know enough to say for sure.....

I should add that right now, with the gun fully assembled, if I pull the trigger all the way, the hammer closes fully, as it should, with no binding, but as I release pressure from the trigger, very slowly, it moves half-way forward, then "catches" on something, and only when I release almost all the pressure on the trigger, does it suddenly free up and move forward all the way.

I will attach three photos that might help point out what is wrong. The small part to the right of the hammer in the first photo (middle of the red circle) is the part that Will at first didn't want to remove because it's tricky to get the spring back in, and that's the part that I think is binding somehow....:
STOP!! Sounds like you're forcing the hammer into a faux half-cock, which can damage delicate mating surfaces.

When lowering the hammer on an unloaded gun, the trigger must be fully to the rear, or fully forward (on a loaded gun, it needs to be fully forward, with the finger off the trigger). The tolerances in the action are pretty tight, and in some (but not all) guns, releasing the trigger while lowering the hammer can bind the action in a half-cock the gun wasn't designed for.

Check out the series of pics below. I made them specifically to explain the faux half-cock. Study pics 1-4 for normal function, then pics 4 & 5 to see how you can jam the action into a half-cock. Pic 4 shows how the action can half-cock with the trigger fully forward if the sear's too long, but you can also jam the action this way with a proper-length sear by letting the trigger out while lowering the hammer if the tolerances of your particular gun are "just so".

Being able to get your gun into half-cock doesn't mean there's anything wrong with your gun (yet). Some guns can do it, some can't. But as you can see, the gun wasn't designed for it, and you can damage it by doing it.








EDIT added: If you do jam the gun in a half-cock, don't release the half-cock by simply pulling the hammer or trigger individually. Yes, it will release the jam, but this is where it's most likely you'll damage your gun. Instead, un-jam the same way you jammed it, gently pull back both the hammer and trigger simultaneously. The movement should feel smooth. Once done, allow the trigger to fully release forward, then lower the hammer.

Last edited by MrBorland; July 10, 2014 at 08:17 AM.
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Old July 10, 2014, 09:08 AM   #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrBorland View Post
Sounds like you're forcing the hammer into a faux half-cock, which can damage delicate mating surfaces.

When lowering the hammer on an unloaded gun, the trigger must be fully to the rear, or fully forward (on a loaded gun, it needs to be fully forward, with the finger off the trigger). The tolerances in the action are pretty tight, and in some (but not all) guns, releasing the trigger while lowering the hammer can bind the action in a half-cock the gun wasn't designed for.

Check out the series of pics below. I made them specifically to explain the faux half-cock. Study pics 1-4 for normal function, then pics 4 & 5 to see how you can jam the action into a half-cock. Pic 4 shows how the action can half-cock with the trigger fully forward if the sear's too long, but you can also jam the action this way with a proper-length sear by letting the trigger out while lowering the hammer if the tolerances of your particular gun are "just so".

Being able to get your gun into half-cock doesn't mean there's anything wrong with your gun (yet). Some guns can do it, some can't. But as you can see, the gun wasn't designed for it, and you can damage it by doing it.


EDIT added: If you do jam the gun in a half-cock, don't release the half-cock by simply pulling the hammer or trigger individually. Yes, it will release the jam, but this is where it's most likely you'll damage your gun. Instead, un-jam the same way you jammed it, gently pull back both the hammer and trigger simultaneously. The movement should feel smooth. Once done, allow the trigger to fully release forward, then lower the hammer.
Thanks - I will take the side plate off, and try to see what is going on so I learn to understand it. I've never heard of faux half-cock before. The more I learn, the more I find out I have yet to learn.



If you watch the video of what I'm doing now, I don't think it's what you refer to as faux half-cock. That doesn't mean Will or I didn't do that unintentionally, while we were trying to figure out what is wrong. It should be clear in the video that I pull the trigger all the way, the gun "fires", and I simply release the trigger slowly - there is a specific spot where something "binds".

There's also the possibility that this is what's been wrong all along, that ages ago someone didn't do this, "which can damage delicate mating surfaces". My totally uneducated gut feeling is that what you wrote here describes what I'm feeling, and there is some kind of mechanical interference between parts.




After cleaning the gun, we dry-fired the gun many times, both single action, and double action, and something felt wrong - the trigger didn't want to return all the way forward. Will tightened up the screw against the main spring, and it got much better, but this "bind" was still felt. Last night I tightened that screw all the way, so the main spring now looks like the photos I've seen. The bind happens after "shooting", hammer fully forward, while releasing the trigger. If you release the trigger normally, you barely notice the issue. If you release the trigger as slowly as you can, it gets "stuck" while moving forward.

Last week, back at the gunshop, my totally uneducated guess as to where the problem was coming from, was the area inside my red circle over the photo, and the same parts you've shown in your very last photo, at the bottom right. I'll try the new springs, but suspect the problem all along has been that one or more of these parts got damaged, long before I got the gun.......
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Old July 10, 2014, 09:58 AM   #91
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A question that I'd like to ask - maybe it makes no sense at all when it comes to guns, but here goes... (this assumes that the problem is not caused by a soft spring, but instead by parts that are binding, rather then moving freely.)

A lifetime ago, I used to do mechanical design. I also used to work on motorcycles, and later on, small brass model locomotives. Many times, especially with the locomotives, there was a mechanism that was supposed to run smoothly, but it had a bind somewhere, preventing it from performing smoothly. My "solution" was to disconnect any motors, gears, springs, and any parts that weren't needed, and jut to work the mechanism looking for the parts that were causing the bind. I would start removing parts, one at a time, seeing if this "fixed" things. It was usually fairly easy to find the problem, and knowing where the problem was coming from I knew what parts to repair, adjust, or replace.

Is it possible to do this with my revolver? Can I remove all the springs, the cylinder, and one by one, the other gun parts, until I find which specific parts might be causing the bind, if in fact that is the problem?

Those of you who work on guns probably would just look at all the parts for signs of anything wearing strangely - if there's an obvious problem, I might even find it, but I still need to learn what all the parts are, what they do, and so on......


.........and if all this turns out to be so far over my head that I'm not capable of doing anything about it, maybe I need to give up, and find an experienced gunsmith.
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Old July 10, 2014, 10:04 AM   #92
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Mike - Yes, I initially just read your 1st update, and fired off a quick reply trying to avert some damage from a half-cock.

I just watched your video, and agree it's not likely a half-cock issue. It could be a return spring issue, but opening the sideplate and watching closely as you cycle the action will be informative. Could be the springs are fine but the DA sear's simply a little long (see #4 in my pic above), and you'll see the interference if you watch closely enough.

Also look closely at where the rebound slide re-engages the hammer as it slides forward. It's close to 2 right angles sliding over each other, so if that interaction isn't smooth, that could help impede things, too. Also look at how the front of the trigger is riding over the cylinder stop on the trigger's return. Could be another area of interference.

Be sure to take the majority of the mainspring tension off by backing the tension screw out before removing the sideplate, and definitely before cycling the action with the sideplate off, otherwise you can bend (or break) the hammer stud. With little mainspring tension, the trigger will likely come forward with no difficulty, but you still ought to see if there's any mechanical binding that doesn't look right.

BTW, here's a link to some revolver animation, in case that helps.

http://www.genitron.com/Basics/Interactive-Revolver

Quote:
Originally Posted by mikemyers
Can I remove all the springs, the cylinder, and one by one, the other gun parts, until I find which specific parts might be causing the bind, if in fact that is the problem?
Yes, you can, and it's often quite helpful.

Last edited by MrBorland; July 10, 2014 at 10:09 AM.
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Old July 10, 2014, 11:18 AM   #93
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........and you'll see the interference if you watch closely enough...........Also look closely at where the rebound slide re-engages the hammer as it slides forward. It's close to 2 right angles sliding over each other, so if that interaction isn't smooth, that could help impede things, too. Also look at how the front of the trigger is riding over the cylinder stop on the trigger's return. Could be another area of interference.
When I get the sideplate off, I will try to check each of those, once I learn which part is which. Your animation is great - wish they had a "slow motion mode"! I tried to find animations for the past several days, but none of them were still working.




Quote:
Originally Posted by MrBorland View Post
Be sure to take the majority of the mainspring tension off by backing the tension screw out before removing the sideplate, and definitely before cycling the action with the sideplate off, otherwise you can bend (or break) the hammer stud. With little mainspring tension, the trigger will likely come forward with no difficulty, but you still ought to see if there's any mechanical binding that doesn't look right.
Thanks for posting this!!! I was going to follow the steps here (https://www.okshooters.com/showthrea...and-Reassembly ), and he didn't mention those things.
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Old July 10, 2014, 04:11 PM   #94
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Some factory rebound springs are in the mail. Let us know how it all turns out.
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Old July 10, 2014, 05:15 PM   #95
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Some factory rebound springs are in the mail. Let us know how it all turns out.

Thanks! I just got back from the range. The gun shot fine, and since I wasn't "trying to notice" the problem, it didn't exist. Actually, I did better with the gun today, after the cleaning and all, than I've ever done before with it. I can shoot 3" groups at 15 yards, but before I get too old to shoot, I'd like to get that down to two inch groups.

There's a gun show in Miami in about four weeks - maybe I can find an old, beat-up S&W revolver for a low price (due to condition) and I'll have a gun I can practice with, learning how to take it apart, clean it, and all the rest, with minimal risk. If nothing else, I'll get to know all the parts a lot better. I'm sitting here now, never having even taken a sideplate off a gun yet!

.........anyway, here's the last target out of the four that I shot at today. The grid is 1" squares, with a 3" bull. :

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Old July 10, 2014, 11:45 PM   #96
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Thanks for weighing in with your experience.



Did you read the rest of the posts? I don't know if you're ragging on me, if so, please read more.

I read through them, I'm sorry if it made it look like I was ragging on you, it was not my intention. Your advice has been very sound. One of my pet peeves is when people brag about the "awesome trigger job" they did on their S&W then I inspect it to find the strain screw backed out halfway, lol.
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Old July 10, 2014, 11:51 PM   #97
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ljnowell,

do you shoot da in slow fire?

murf

Sorry, just noticed your question. Yes I do shoot my slow fire double action also. On the National Match course with either of my comp guns I shoot low 280s out of 300. I'm still improving though.

Also I do my own trigger work and both of mine are far from stock.
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Old July 11, 2014, 08:57 AM   #98
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Quote:
Sorry if this seems like a hi-jack. I have not read the whole thread word for word, but a question came up in my mind.
What attract people to SA revolvers? Is one reason perhaps that they ''might'' be more accurate than DA revolvers? Or can it be the looks? Or is it nostalgia?
Are a DA revolver in SA mode not just as accurate as a SA revolver?
I can answer that but it may not be what you had in mind. I don't prefer SA but out of respect near reverence for a design that old I wanted to try representatives. I started with a New Vaquero 45 Colt 5.5", then a .41 Magnum NMBH. Now I await a Ruger Single Seven, .327 Federal Magnum.

I wasn't so sure about the grip shape, since the double actions have left traditional appearance behind and developed various fits and ways of handling recoil and concealed carry. However, so far my SAs have not been purposed for CCW. To my surprise and satisfaction, the guns shoot well and comfortably with the grip shape provided, allowing that I replaced them with something sexier and more personal, yet maintaining the shape and dimensions.

Maybe that will get us off the gunsmithing and troubleshooting and back to more about the comparative actions.
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Old July 11, 2014, 09:08 AM   #99
Onward Allusion
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In the video, it is suggested that shooting single-action on a double action revolver isn't doing anything to help develop good trigger control.
This is soooooooo true! I used to shoot all DA revolvers AND semis in single action mode. I shot like crap. About 6 years ago I started shooting DAO handguns. Over the course of about a year, my shooting improved by leaps. SA on a revolver will only give you the impression that it is more accurate because it greatly lessens the need for trigger control. If you want to be a good shooter, learn to master the DA trigger.
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Old July 11, 2014, 10:43 AM   #100
MartinS
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Odd that there is any part of the S&W lockwork that a gunsmith is reluctant to disassemble. Not odd that a persistent quest for problems will find some.
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