This thread is from back in July, but I can provide an update since it seems to have resurfaced.
I purchased a used 4" 617, and kept it until about two weeks ago. I probably put 500 rounds or so through it. I found it similarly difficult to keep clean, but that seems to be the case with any revolver.
I had a Hi-Viz red fiber optic front site professionally installed in place of the ramp. This significantly improved the site picture for me. Here it is:
Back in January, a Ruger 22/45 Lite caught my eye at the LGS, and it ended up following me home. I fell in love with it. I put Ruger's after market fiber optic front and rear sites on it (made by a different manufacturer but sold through their site. Got them cheaper from Midway). Green rear and red front, makes it really pop.
The gun is a much closer simulation of my other semi-autos, and a lot easier to reload with the McFadden reloader
I picked up. I found myself always packing that along in the range bag, and the 617 getting no love.
I am generally loathe to sell any gun, as I have regretted most of the sales I've made. So I sat on the 617 for a while and thought about it, but eventually decided that it was a lot of money just sitting in the safe not getting used. I couldn't really think of a scenario where I would take the 617 over the Ruger. Possibly for shooting CB Longs and Shorts, but I generally use a rifle for that anyway, and it's not the end of the world if I have to rack the slide to cycle the gun.
So, I let the 617 go, and traded it towards another revolver that I have more use for. While I owned it, I had no complaints with the 617, other than the difficulty in loading those tiny .22 rounds into all 10 of those tiny chambers. The McFadden system really makes it a breeze to load and shoot all day. I think if I was doing it again, and absolutely wanted a revolver, I would probably go for a M63 or an SP101 just because they already have the fiber optic site there.
Hopefully this isn't one I regret letting go of!