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S&W 317 .22lr ammo issues.

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by longdayjake, Sep 22, 2011.

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  1. longdayjake

    longdayjake Member

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    So, every now and then I get a revolver and always have problems with them. I own 3 revolvers and I can never get them to be reliable shooters for me. Anyway, this time I bought a s&w 317 with the 3" barrel. I shot it a bunch and it did fine for about 200 rounds. Now, all of the sudden the bases of the cases are deforming enough that they are putting pressure on the frame and not allowing the cylinder to spin. What can I do to fix this issue? I am using cheap blazer CCI. I shot at least 100 rounds with no problems from the same box of blazer but it is just now giving me issues. I have tried cleaning it to no avail. Any ideas?
     
  2. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    Take your toothbrush and clean the unburned powder out from under the extractor star.

    From then on, hold the gun with the muzzle pointed up when you eject the brass, and the unburned powder won't get under the extractor star.

    Might not even hurt to clean the chambers & barrel with a bronze bore brush & solvent either.

    rc
     
  3. BCRider

    BCRider Member

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    Yep, very likely unburnt powder or powder residue buildup under the star. Nothing builds up enough to deform the bases. Although if the ejected brass shows signs of staining along the sides then at some point the rounds will become stiff to insert and eject due to a buildup of powder residue in the chambers. Sometimes so stiff to insert that they don't go in all the way without a healthy push.
     
  4. Carl Levitian

    Carl Levitian member

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    jake, after 50 years of shooting revolvers almost exclusively, I can tell you that they need to be cleaned a little more than autos. Especially what rc told you. This was the death of revolvers for military use, they don't like a large amount of dirt. I have the same 317 as you dom as well as the better half has one as her bedside handgun. Being retired old folks, we go to the range at least once a week, and go through a whole box of cheapo Federal bulk stuff from Walmart. We seldon have any problems with our revolvers.

    Karen still has the S&W model 17 her father gave her for high school graduation. That was in 1957. It still shoots well. I still have the same 1934 kit gun I got when I got out of high school and saved up my money. Aside from an overhaul in 1996, it's been fine. I can't even begin to figure the thousands of rounds that has been down the tube. On the other hand, we've never has a failure to feed or a failure to eject. We've been shooting together for our 40 years of marital bliss, and the guns have been totally reliable. But we clean them well.

    A revolver will give you flawless service for a lifetime if you clean it well after every shooting session, and take a toothbrush with you to the range and brush out under the ejector after about 200 to 300 rounds. That ejector is the Achillies heel of the revolver. Take care of that, and they will take care of you. Remember to keep that muzzel pointing up when you eject those empties.
     
  5. TonyT

    TonyT Member

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    With either my older K-22 or the newer Model 617 i normally shoot ca. 300 rouinds during a range session. I use Aguilla SE SV in the K-22 and either Fedral bulk pack or Remin gton Golden bulk pack ammo in the Model 617. After 300 rounds you really have to clean up the revolvers with particular attention to the cylinder undwer the ejector star. Never had a single malfunction in a 300 round shoot.
     
  6. Remllez

    Remllez Member

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    All of the above will help you out, I will add check your ejector rod to make sure it's tight in the cylinder.....lefty tighty...righty loosie. Worth a try.
     
  7. longdayjake

    longdayjake Member

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    Cleaning out under the extractor seems to have helped. I am in love with my revolvers but you are definately right about them needing to be cleaned way more then my semi autos. I guess I will have to learn how to clean my guns better.
     
  8. Nullcone

    Nullcone Member

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    317

    This is the little aluminum job right? Years ago, I bought an adjustable sight model (pre Hi-Viz, NIB) and had much the same problem you are.

    Some cases we soft enough and my chambers oversize enough to cause cycling/extraction issues... iirc, RWS conical and ball caps were the worst. A cylinderful would actually tie the gun up pretty tight. Not to say I didn't have problems with LR ammo as well. CCI usually worked adequately, but double action cycling still got sticky.

    The buddy (and FFL holder) I had purchased it through was helping me figure out who to send it back to (SW or distributor) and decided to test fire it. After a handful of MiniMags he decided the problem was me and my lack of diligent cleaning. Being an ex-marine, he detail strips and meticulously cleans every square millimeter of a firearm after shooting it... sometimes after just looking at it.

    Me? Not so much. I clean them when they need it. I don't wash my car every day either. For the record, I did clean the little 317 as best I could to see if it would help.

    So he re-purchases the gun from me, intending to use it as a summer deep conceal job. Two weeks later I get a call...

    "Hey this piece of crap locks up even when marine clean!"

    Yeah, I told you that. It's also so light its hard to shoot precisely for me.

    "Yeah that too!"

    Not sure what he did with it after, but we both have KelTec .32's now for when it gets hotter than 110.

    So Jake I've used way too many words to say... after giving it a good clean if you are still having issues, it may actually be the gun.
     
  9. Onmilo

    Onmilo Member

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    "may actually be the gun."

    No, It may actually be the ammo.
     
  10. TonyT

    TonyT Member

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    I forgot to mention that besides the cleaning requirements one should look at the choice of ammo. Rdemington Thunderbolt is particularly dirty and to be avoided. Remington Golden and CCI Blazer are also quite dirty. The cleaner shhoting the ammothe fewer problems. in the HV category the least expensive clean buirning ammo I have found is the Federal bulk pack copper plated hollow points.
     
  11. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    I have owned a 317 since 1998, and it has never seen any kind of ammo except CCI & Super-X hi-speed.

    And I have never had a moments trouble with it.

    Buying the cheapest ammo to save a few cents isn't always worth the trouble.

    rc
     
  12. gbw

    gbw Member

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    Another similar experience.

    My 317-3 3" has the same problem, which I've been ignoring the past few months - I've several other 22s. The revolver is about 2 years old, probably 1500-2000 rds at a guess.

    Ammo choice doesn't matter - CCI, Winchester not bulk, Remington not bulk, all types of bulk, all of it hi-speed, I haven't tried target ammo.

    Nor does very clean v. not clean.

    Cases are visibly swelled near the rim as if they had no support. They are wedged by the swelling back against the recoil shield. Nearly impossible to open the cylinder and happens nearly every time. This gun ran fine for the first year or so, no longer. Going back to S&W asap.
     
  13. tubeshooter

    tubeshooter Member

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    I have to chime in on this one...

    I have the same gun, exhibiting the same behavior, headed back to S&W - if they will ever ship a label to my 'smith. It's been about a month now. :banghead:

    In my case, it is not the ammo. It is not a loose star. It is not dirt. It doesn't matter if the gun is hot or cold.

    It just seems like 2 of the 8 chambers sometimes result in the behavior, which can tie the gun up pretty good. Didn't do this at first. Any brand you feed it - except CBs and shorts.

    Had my 'smith give it a spin. Same thing.

    Unfired rounds rotate fine.

    I am not sure what the deal is, but for that kind of coin needless to say I am extremely disappointed... :cuss:


    Send it back, that's what I'm doing. I promise to report back to this thread once I get it back from S&W. Regardless - I think I see one of those new SP101s in .22 in my future soon.
     
  14. Onmilo

    Onmilo Member

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    Whine enough and I do believe S&W will install an 8 shot stainless steel cylinder from the Model 63 on your 317 for a very moderate charge. HTH
     
  15. tubeshooter

    tubeshooter Member

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    ^ I thought about this, but I wasn't sure if the steel cylinder would batter the aluminum frame over time.


    I wouldn't mind trying it. I wish I had just got a 63 to begin with... but the 3" wasn't out just yet.


    Thanks for the suggestion - I appreciate it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2011
  16. scaatylobo

    scaatylobo Member

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    I am on the second 317 as the first was bought as they came out and was a total pita.

    This one has a 3" barrel and adj sights and is a pleasure to carry and shoot.

    I showed it to a few friends and they instantly hated me as they HAD to go buy one to carry in the woods.

    The best thing I like about it is that you REALLY dont know it there as it weighs NOTHING [ 9 oz I believe ].

    I have shot too many kinds of .22 ammo to list [ or remember ] and had no ftf .

    But accuracy is a bit fussy and I shoot whatever she likes at that moment.

    I too clean her VERY well as was noted and have no problems with jams etc.

    Good luck with your next one.
     
  17. gbw

    gbw Member

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    I sent S&W an e-mail 11 days ago describing my problems with the 317, got a FedEx label via return e-mail 2 days later. I returned gun to S&W 8 days ago, including some of the swelled empty cases. Got it back today, note says, and gun shows, cylinder replaced and I think also the extractor.

    Really excellent service from S&W assuming it's actually fixed.

    It was swelling the base of the cases visibly just forward of the rim, and locking the cylinder so tight it took a mallet to open it. Clean or dirty, all types ammo. 3" 317-3. I'll try it out in a day or two.

    Gonna get a 2" if this one's ok, they are too light and handy for words. But violently overpriced.
     
  18. tubeshooter

    tubeshooter Member

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    ^ Good deal! My gunsmith never could get a label or a callback, so I have sent off for one myself last night.


    I really hope my experience is as good as yours. Thanks a lot for posting that.
     
  19. tubeshooter

    tubeshooter Member

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    UPDATE:

    I requested a label via the S&W website. Turnaround on that was about 2 business days.

    Just shipped the gun off today.

    I hope they address the issue. I asked for a steel cylinder and indicated a willingness to pay for this.


    So far so good. I will update again once the gun gets back, and then again after I get a chance to fire it (which might be awhile). Also plan to post a pic or two. Stay tuned...
     
  20. dirt_j00

    dirt_j00 Member

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    What's the word on the fix, tubeshooter?
     
  21. tubeshooter

    tubeshooter Member

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    Still at S&W. I could see per the shipping label tracking that they received it just a little over 3 weeks ago.

    Have not received any contact from them, via e-mail or otherwise. If there is a charge associated with the steel cylinder (which I made clear that I was perfectly willing to pay), I'm sure they will let me know.

    I hear that they have a bit of a backlog as far as warranty work right now.


    I hadn't forgotten. I will definitely update once I get the gun back. I was hoping it would be before Thanksgiving and I'd get a chance to fire it, but that seems unlikely now.
     
  22. dirt_j00

    dirt_j00 Member

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    Thanks for the update! Am looking at the 317 "kit" gun (3") and am curious about this issue, as it seems others have experienced it as well.
     
  23. tubeshooter

    tubeshooter Member

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    No problem! That's why I'm taking the time and trouble to update - to help people like you.



    My humble advice, after all this, would be...

    ...if you can get by without the whole "light as a feather" aspect, just get yourself a model 63.
     
  24. dirt_j00

    dirt_j00 Member

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    Ha! Funny you mention that b/c I'm tossing around that decision.

    Help me understand though: why would the same gun, just made of different material, function differently? Does it have different tolerances in reality? Meaning couldn't a 63 suffer the same problem?
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2011
  25. tubeshooter

    tubeshooter Member

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    I am not sure exactly why, but I suspect it has to do with the aluminum alloy somehow.

    I don't hear about this problem with the model 63. Also, when the problem occurs the base of the cases appear to be flared out a little.

    In my particular case, it appears that 2 of the 8 chambers have some sort of problem that causes the flared cases sometimes.


    As you say - on paper it shouldn't matter. Evidently in reality - it does.

    Great gun when it works, btw.
     
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