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Old September 12, 2014, 03:30 PM   #1
Nick_C_S
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Cleaning S&W Revolvers

I've wondered this for years. And now that we have this interweb thing, I can ask:

When I clean my S&W revolvers, I remove the front side-plate screw to free the cylinder/crane assembly, and remove them. That way, I have 3 manageable pieces to work with. Rather than trying to clean everything with the cylinder flopping around (probably not good for the crane alignment) and the thrusting action when wire brushing it (probably not good for the crane alignment either)

I started doing this early on - some 30 years ago. And have been doing it this way ever since. I don't know if this practice is common, or if I'm the only one to ever ever do this , or somewhere in between.

Does anybody else clean their Smiths his way?
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Old September 12, 2014, 03:33 PM   #2
WIL TERRY
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That works fine.
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Old September 12, 2014, 03:58 PM   #3
g.willikers
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Yeah, that's the way I do revolvers, too.
Remove the cylinder, scrub barrel and chambers, and spray through out the frame without further disassembly.
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Old September 12, 2014, 05:31 PM   #4
MrBorland
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I don't remove the cylinder & yoke for routine cleaning.

For those who don't, but want to, please be aware of a couple things: First, use a proper screwdriver with a hollow-ground bit. Otherwise, you'll bugger up the screw.

Second, once the yoke screw's removed, the entire cylinder/yoke assembly will fall off the front of the gun (and onto the hard floor) when the cylinder's opened and the muzzle pointed down. A bent ejector rod will affect the gun's action, and will likely need to be replaced. If the yoke gets bent, the gun needs to go back to S&W for a new fitted yoke.

To remove the cylinder and yoke, remove the screw while keeping the gun over a table. Carefully open the cylinder, lay the gun on the table on it's right side, hold the cylinder with your left hand, and slide the yoke off the front of the gun with your right hand. Voilá.

To me, the benefit/risk ratio is too small for routine cleaning.
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Old September 12, 2014, 05:50 PM   #5
Doyle
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I'm more with MrBorland. I just hold the cylinder open by putting my left index finger between the crane and frame and clean that way. It might not be perfect but it works and keeps me from screwing up anything internal.
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Old September 12, 2014, 06:11 PM   #6
trigger643
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I was once as thorough as the OP. These days, meh, I swab the bore and brush around the forcing cone, wipe it down and call it done.
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Old September 12, 2014, 06:37 PM   #7
357 Python
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The only difference is I put the cylinder in a jar of solvent while I clean the rest of the revolver. After the frame and barrel are done then I work on the cylinder. The soaking makes it so much easier.
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Old September 12, 2014, 07:23 PM   #8
Bob Wright
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I don't remove the cylinder, too. I hold the gun, muzzle down, using my left thumb to hold the cylinder open. While cleaning the bore, I lay the gun on its side and use my fingers to keep the cylinder open while holding the gun with my left hand.

Bob Wright
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Old September 12, 2014, 08:03 PM   #9
jeager106
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If I shoot my revolvers much I do remove the crane & cylinder.
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Old September 12, 2014, 08:20 PM   #10
2123
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I've never found the need to remove a cylinder on a revolver to clean it. The disassembly process will create more wear and tear than it's worth.
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Old September 12, 2014, 08:28 PM   #11
James K
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Repeated removal and replacement of the front sideplate screw will lead to wear and eventually a need to replace it. Fortunately on most S&W's the middle sideplate screw can be fitted as a replacement. The new system ("borrowed" from Colt) is better.

Jim
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Old September 13, 2014, 02:12 PM   #12
jglsprings
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Do you have to clean revolvers? I thought that they were so "simple" they didn't need any maintenance.



I don't remove my cylinder either. I have had the yoke/cylinder drop out like Mr Borland mentions.

I may tear down a revolver once in awhile to clean / check / inspect it. But when I do that the side plate comes off as well.

YMMV
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Old September 13, 2014, 02:17 PM   #13
T. O'Heir
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There's no reason whatsoever to disassemble a revolver, Smiths or any other brand, for cleaning.
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Old September 13, 2014, 02:39 PM   #14
roaddog28
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I very seldom take the cylinder out. I clean my revolvers after 50 rounds and I am very careful cleaning.
Howard
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Old September 13, 2014, 03:12 PM   #15
Bob Wright
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I do remove the cylinders on my Single Action revolvers as its a pretty simple thing to do.

Clean after every fifty rounds? I just wait until I get through shooting and get home.

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Old September 13, 2014, 03:34 PM   #16
Dragline45
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Quote:
There's no reason whatsoever to disassemble a revolver, Smiths or any other brand, for cleaning.
For regular cleaning I agree. But every once in a while it's a good idea to remove the cylinder and clean the crane which it sits on as it can get gunked up with heavy use.
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Old September 13, 2014, 03:35 PM   #17
James K
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How much I clean a revolver depends on how much use it has and how it is acting. Some get only a run through with a cleaning rod, some get a more thorough breakdown. I rarely remove the sideplate unless there is a reason other than cleaning.

Jim
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Old September 13, 2014, 04:09 PM   #18
spacecoast
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I always remove the screw and the yoke/cylinder to clean, mainly because it's easier to handle the parts and clean the cylinder and inside the frame thoroughly. Before reassembling, I put oil on the oil on the yoke and spin the cylinder on it to remove any accumulated crud that might be down in the cylinder where it's difficult to remove otherwise. I've never dropped the parts onto a hard surface, but if I did I'm sure I would be unhappy about it. Normally I'm sitting down and working over a desk for cleaning.
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Old September 13, 2014, 10:13 PM   #19
Mike Irwin
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When I clean my Smiths, I do a complete take down. Cylinder out, guts out.
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Old September 13, 2014, 11:06 PM   #20
Nick_C_S
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spacecoast: I could have written your last post; verbatim. My point exactly.
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