New Smiths without the lock?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by halfmoonclip, Apr 26, 2022.

  1. halfmoonclip

    halfmoonclip Member

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    Buddy just got an Airweight Centennial; it's not a Performance Center or any other special run (to my knowledge), but it is lockless.
    Did I miss a memo, or has Smith & Wesson finally had an epiphany about the locks?
    Thanks,
    Moon
     
  2. NIGHTLORD40K

    NIGHTLORD40K Member

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    The hammerless guns never had it, IIRC.
     
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  3. ontarget

    ontarget Member

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    I bought a new 642 a couple of years ago without the lock, but I have seen many 642s with the lock.
     
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  4. Blue Jays

    Blue Jays Member

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  5. cfullgraf

    cfullgraf Member

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    Many J-frames have been available without the lock over the past few years. The various Law Enforcement agencies required it and it has drifted into the civilian market.
     
  6. Jonesy814

    Jonesy814 Member

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    Since the 442 & 642 don't have an external hammer, they don't need a lock. I believe they are the only ones. I bought a no lock 442 back in 2019
     
  7. Blue Jays

    Blue Jays Member

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    See link posted above to the Smith & Wesson website for more accurate information.
     
  8. toivo

    toivo Member

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    Hmm ... When I ordered a 642 eight or ten years ago, my friendly local FFL asked me "Lock or no lock?" Maybe he was mistaken, or just joking.
     
  9. .455_Hunter

    .455_Hunter Member

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    Some models of the DAO guns are offered with or without the lock.
     
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  10. Pat Riot
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    Pat Riot Contributing Member

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    I have seen many more J frames with the lock than without and “no lock” J frames are on the roster in CA, so that isn’t why.
     
  11. Y-T71

    Y-T71 Member

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    My 642 has a lock.

    Not 100% sure but I'm thinking I bought it (new) in '09.

    Never had a problem with it and, I have shot the heck out of it but, if I would've known at the time about some production runs not having the lock I absolutely would've bought it instead (just the purist coming out in me)
     
  12. Ethan Verity

    Ethan Verity Member

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    Several of the centennial series guns (442, 642, 340, and 640 Pro-Series) have always been available without the lock. They are hard to track down though, which I think is odd. My local gun store has 5 new centennial J-frame guns at the moment, and each has the lock! Actually, I don't recall ever seeing a new production no-lock as part of a gun store's normal inventory. I have no idea why brick and mortar stores don't stock the good stuff!

    I had to special order my Model 642 no-lock, I wasn't going to settle when I knew it was still being made without the hole.
     
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  13. guyfromohio

    guyfromohio Member

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    You can buy many of the concealed hammer models with or without lock…usually for the same price.

    94094DEC-A6C4-46B9-B2EA-AE9BA620A557.png
     
  14. unclenunzie
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    unclenunzie Contributing Member

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    I bought two new in box 642s at different times. A 642-2 with lock in 2015, and a 642-1 without in 2021. Other than the lock they are the same. The 642-2 seems much more available, so when the 642-1 was on the shelf I snapped it up. I prefer no lock but it no longer concerns me enough to matter.
     
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  15. north east redneck
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    north east redneck Member

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    My 442 has the lock, bought new ~2009-2010. I know of two other 442s that friends own that have no lock.
     
  16. Master Blaster

    Master Blaster Member

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    My 642 bought in 2004 has the lock or it did until I removed it. The purpose of the lock is to render the gun unable to fire, not for safety.
    Since the hammerless guns which have an internal hammer lack a external slot, the Flag is not visible. The only way to know if the lock is engaged is to pull the trigger.
    That is a safety Hazzard, and I am surprised if S&W hasn't been sued as a result because it is a serious design and safety flaw.
     
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  17. Y-T71

    Y-T71 Member

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    Good, valid points that I had never considered.

    I have fired mine (a lot~900) to ensure reliability but ignored the lock completely from the beginning never considering the systems integration and operation on a concealed/interior hammer design.

    ETA: while I'm getting older, I'm not ready to start handing down my collection to my children yet and that lock, in addition to adding a unnecessary complexity to what always was a simple, solid, reliable design, does entail a different "manual of arms"; no "flag" to indicate if it's locked or not, pulling the trigger just to find out...

    I don't know if I'd call this an epiphany but, it's a scenario I hadn't considered before.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2022
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  18. Master Blaster

    Master Blaster Member

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    My 642 does not have the hammerblock safety, I believe modern concealed/ hammerless guns like the 642, 442 etc all lack that part present on all other S&W revolvers since 1946.
     
  19. Electricmo

    Electricmo Member

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    DAO revolvers with no locks. DA/SA revolvers with locks. Apparently I’m missing something. The lock keeps gun from firing. Does it lock up the action or just keep hammer from dropping? I own no S&W with a lock.
     
  20. Pat Riot
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    Pat Riot Contributing Member

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    Question:
    Has Smith & Wesson ever been sued because a lock engaged when it shouldn’t have on any of their revolvers?
    Not trying to start an argument. I have searched for this a few times with no results.
    Oh, there’s a lot of commentary regarding the lock but I can find no internet evidence of an internal lock engaging on its own at a critical time.
    I am not saying it hasn’t happened, I am saying I can’t find anything.

    One interesting point that I did find, but can’t find now, is that “incidents of the lock inadvertently engaging is purely anecdotal because any part can fail rendering the gun inoperable”. I believe that argument was someone’s reasoning that the lock is no better or worse than any other gun part.

    I have S&W guns with the lock and without. I have never had an issue with a lock engaging, but then, I have never had any part break on an S&W revolver that rendered it inoperable…YET!
     
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  21. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

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    The argument there is that while that is true, the inclusion of the lock includes more parts and thus more chances for the gun to fail at a critical time.

    Most reports of the lock failing are of the "a friend of a friend had one!". Local gunsmith told me that all of the guns brought in to him because of "internal lock failure" were locked up because of something else.

    I'm not saying it has never happened or doesn't happened, just that it doesn't happen as much as few want us to believe. The argument against the lock has kinda drifted from the possibility of failure to one of "esthetics" or "principle", you know, the "ugly Hillary Hole". When the lock first came out, it was to be the doom of S&W unless they immediately succumbed to the pressure from complete lack of sales. Ruger's stock dropped ten times the rate of S&W stock today. Just sayin'......
     
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  22. Pat Riot
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    Pat Riot Contributing Member

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    Agreed.
    Another thing that I find humorous is the MIM parts complaints regarding S&W revolvers but other manufacturers get a pass.
     
  23. Buckeye63

    Buckeye63 Member

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    FD879DCB-0BCB-44C5-BB52-2C146871CBE6.jpeg
     
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  24. Old_Grouch

    Old_Grouch Member

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    360 and 360 PDs are/were available both with and without lock. Both have external hammers.
    The lock has nothing to do with the type of hammer and has absolutely nothing to do with "need".
     
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  25. megatronrules

    megatronrules Member

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    I believe currently that S&W currently offers their J frame revolvers,with or without the the lock. I know the 442/642 and the 340PD and 340M&P as well as the the 640 pro series models can be had sith or without the lock.

    That said I've owned lock and no lock versions of the above mentioned models. I've also owned a 637 with the lock. I fired some pretty stout 38 special ammo including +p and +p+. I've also shot full power magnums through the 340/360 guns I've owned. I never had a lock engage on it's own. Of course it can happen I'm sure, anything CAN happen but the more I researched this I wasn't able to find a single case that was documented of it actually occuring.

    I could be wrong about this last one but i believe and someone please correct me if I'm wrong here. But I believe I read a few places that said the lock on the S&W revolvers engages opposite of the recoil impulse. Meaning down instead of up. I think a lot of the lock debate is mostly political and passionately based vs. more than face based. Which is fine to each their own. I prefer a no lock model of the same gun given the choice. But to me it's more about looks than the very slim chance of the lock malfunctioning.
     
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