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Old May 10, 2009, 12:56 PM   #1
Maxx
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S&W barrel alignment question.

I recently bought a 625-8 on Gunbroker. After cleaning it after firing it for the first time, I noticed the alignment of the barrel is slightly off in relation to the frame. Looking at the barrel from the muzzle end, you can see where the barrel needs to be rotated very slightly counter clockwise.
My experience with revolvers is limited, but I assume it should look perfectly centered to the naked eye.

It was sold to me as unfired, it came with the box and manual, no warranty registration card.
I inspected it, looked great, no wear ring on the cylinder, it indeed looked unfired.
Took it to the range yesterday. It shot great although I tended to shoot slightly to the right.
I love the gun, but this issue has me concerned.
Any input is appreciated.
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Old May 10, 2009, 05:13 PM   #2
herbie1
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Recently I bought a 686 with a barrel that was canted slightly to the left (looking from the rear). I noticed it before I bought the gun (but I also knew that a nearby Gander Mountain is a S&W Warranty Service center). After I got it to the range I found that it shot to the right. Gander Mountain straightened it for free (under warranty). I have not shot it since. I will when I get my hands on some ammo.

If you search around on the net you will find a handful of complaints of revolver barrels (of various makes) being over or under tightened, resulting in either left or right canting.

H.
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Old May 10, 2009, 07:24 PM   #3
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It happens..........call S&W and send it back. They will send you a free shipping label to put on a box.
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Old May 10, 2009, 07:27 PM   #4
melchloboo
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Hey I am in 100% the same boat. I have a 625-8 that is with S&W now, the barrel was under-torqued a few degrees. A few weeks ago I had to send in a 649 for the same problem.

You are probably right and not imagining the problem. Look carefully at where the barrel shroud meets the frame on left and right...that's where you can most easily tell. Also its obvious where the ejector rod fits into the underlug, you'll see sort of a raised seam where it should be perfectly flush. I could actually see the slant in the front sight.

Don't stress. They will fix it on their dime. There service is awesome. My advice is to email, and describe the problem, wait for a reply. I know how you feel :barf: But now I'm back in love with S&W after they fixed it, and I'm really impressed how easy they made the repair process.

Attached is the before and after of my target print on the 649, shot off hand, 1-handed bullseye style at 50ft (that's right a snubby at 50ft did that!). The problem with that gun was an under-torqued barrel...and no adjustable sights to compensate.

I hope this experience doesn't turn you off to S&W revolvers, its a freak thing and they make it right. I still love 'em and will keep buying more
Attached Images
File Type: jpg before_after.jpg (94.1 KB, 119 views)
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Old May 10, 2009, 08:44 PM   #5
Maxx
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It's not obvious, but I'm not imagining it. (I'm not blaming it for my shooting slightly to the right either. lol) For whatever reason, I happened to notice it. It would be easy to over look.

I'll contact S&W as you guys suggest.
If they are going to charge me for it, I'll weigh sending it to them vs sending it to Cylinder and Slide. They list checking and aligning the barrel as part of an enhancement package that includes a few other things I would like to have done anyway.

I like this revolver. If it were a $2000 hand crafted custom gun, I'd be upset.
Wish the issue didn't exist, but I'll get it fixed. Hopefully for free.
If S&W takes care of me, I'll be a happy camper.

Appreciate the input.
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Old May 11, 2009, 06:59 AM   #6
Bboomer
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Quote:
It happens..........call S&W and send it back. They will send you a free shipping label to put on a box.
+1

My friend bought a new 625 about a year ago, about six weeks ago I was looking at it and the first thing I noticed was that the bbl was canted. He had adjusted the rear site all the way to the right, I think it was.

He then call S&W as per the above quote. Turn around was 2/3 weeks.

Wheres QC gone ? Its unbelieveable that they are sending these defectives to the retail stores!

The repair was free as was shipping etc..
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Old May 12, 2009, 08:38 PM   #7
Maxx
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Well, I called S&W.
You guys were correct. The man said they would correct it for me, said he was sending a shipping label.
No hassle whatsoever. Very good customer service IMO.
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Old May 15, 2009, 02:33 PM   #8
melchloboo2
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I got my 625-8 back this week. Now the barrel is much better aligned with the frame, and the rear sight is relatively centered. Shot the gun at 25 yards, off hand, one-handed single action with 10 shots in the 10-ring.

S&W has me smiling again. Good luck with yours.

One caveat, when they ship it back to you UPS they give you no heads up...and UPS will demand someone sign for it. In my case they didn't leave me a note until the 2nd delivery (I was at work each time) and then I could go online and tell UPS to hold it for me to pickup. If you're home when UPS comes then don't worry.
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Old May 16, 2009, 10:25 PM   #9
Maxx
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Quote:
I got my 625-8 back this week. Now the barrel is much better aligned with the frame, and the rear sight is relatively centered. Shot the gun at 25 yards, off hand, one-handed single action with 10 shots in the 10-ring.

S&W has me smiling again. Good luck with yours.

One caveat, when they ship it back to you UPS they give you no heads up...and UPS will demand someone sign for it. In my case they didn't leave me a note until the 2nd delivery (I was at work each time) and then I could go online and tell UPS to hold it for me to pickup. If you're home when UPS comes then don't worry.
Good deal, I'm shipping mine back next week.
I would assume they need a signature for the return trip. I'd hate to see them leave the gun at the door.
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Old June 30, 2009, 07:27 PM   #10
Maxx
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Update:
I sent the gun in and got it back 3 weeks later with nothing changed.

I wrote a more detailed letter, took pics and enclosed them, pointing out the differences between the barrel clearances on the right and left sides of the frame.
I just received this E-mail:
Quote:
We have received your Model 625 in our Service Department
for examination. You note you returned the revolver for the alignment of the
barrel to frame.

The barrel does not have to align with the frame for the proper alignment of the
barrel.

Are you having a problem with the gun shooting to one side???

We align the sights, not the barrel to the frame

Thank you,
*****
Customer Service
Now I am starting to lose my faith that they are going to fix this.
I replied back that the barrel and frame on any quality revolver should align.
What do you guys think??
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Old July 1, 2009, 12:30 AM   #11
Mike Irwin
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Unfortunately S&W has had a REAL problem with not being able to screw the barrels in so the front sight is vertical for quite a few years.

I think the problem is better in recent years.

Back in 1994-1995 I was working in a gun shop where we sold a lot of S&W revolvers. It wasn't uncommon for a shipment of 15 guns to have 3 to 5 with barrels screwed in too far.

REALLY annoying for a gun costing that much money.
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Old July 1, 2009, 10:28 AM   #12
CraigC
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Quote:
They list checking and aligning the barrel as part of an enhancement package...
Could, at least partially, be a slight problem of terminology. "Alignment", as it pertains to a revolver, is the alignment between the bore and chambers. Your problem is simply a barrel that was under or over turned in the frame. A simple fix that any gunsmith worth his salt should be able to correct in a matter of minutes. If you want C&S's enhancement package anyway, just send it to them.
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Old July 1, 2009, 11:16 AM   #13
James K
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For decades, Colt adjusted the windage on their fixed sight revolvers by turning the barrel to cant the front sight in the direction needed. Oddly, I cant recall anyone complaining, but then maybe folks were less demanding than they are today.

Jim
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Old July 3, 2009, 02:46 PM   #14
Maxx
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Quote:
For decades, Colt adjusted the windage on their fixed sight revolvers by turning the barrel to cant the front sight in the direction needed. Oddly, I cant recall anyone complaining, but then maybe folks were less demanding than they are today.
I never thought that expecting an expensive revolver to not have a visibly over twisted barrel was being overly demanding.
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Old July 3, 2009, 06:40 PM   #15
CraigC
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I don't think it's unreasonable to expect that at all. Sure, it's customary to rotate the barrel on a fixed-sight sixgun to regulate it but on an adjustable sighted S&W, I'd expect the front sight to be straight and the barrel rib to be even with the frame.
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Old July 3, 2009, 07:11 PM   #16
jim n iowa
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This is not a problem only to S&W, I have 3 .44 mag Ruger revolvers, two of the barrels turned. The first was a Super Black Hawk. I called c/s and they were less than friendly told me how to send it in for a estimate. They "repaired it and returned it to me with in 6 wks. The second barrel turning was on a Red Hawk, I called c/s and they were very helpful, sent a prepaid usp shipping order, (this is costly as it will run $50 to ship to them). In less than 4 wks I had the Red Hawk returned with a letter stating that they replaced the barrel. It has the same marks on the barrel as when I bought it. Now they have the first gun back that they repaired as the barrel turned again. It is really disappointing in the quality control of both of these "made in America" companies. Autos don't turn, but they can have feeding problems.
Jim
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Old July 6, 2009, 08:43 PM   #17
Maxx
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Quote:
I don't think it's unreasonable to expect that at all. Sure, it's customary to rotate the barrel on a fixed-sight sixgun to regulate it but on an adjustable sighted S&W, I'd expect the front sight to be straight and the barrel rib to be even with the frame.
Thank you.
I was on the phone to S&W this morning. I still can''t get a straight answer out of them. This is also the 3rd day they told me they would call back and never did.
I'm getting so ****** now, I'm debating telling them to just ship it back so I can choose between paying Cylinder and Slide to fix it, or just sell the thing and never buy another S&W product again.
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Old July 6, 2009, 09:08 PM   #18
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This is an interesting topic. Wouldn't you think that S&W (and every other reputable firearms manufacturer, for that matter) would have jigs that they would use to be able to quickly and accurately determine that the barrel is aligned to the frame and the sights are aligned and square? Seems like it'd be such an easy thing to fabricate and would take less than a minute to put the revolver in the jig and make sure everything is properly lined up.
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Old July 6, 2009, 09:24 PM   #19
James K
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The companies do have that kind of equipment and other equipment much more sophisticated and complex, but some guns just don't seem to want to play by the rules. Consider that if makers ever produced guns that all shot perfect groups to point of aim, this site would have about 80% fewer posts, and gun magazines would go out of business.

Jim
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Old July 9, 2009, 01:14 PM   #20
.284
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Hey Maxx

I had the same problem with a 629 Classic a few years ago. I took it to a very well respected gunsmith (Williams Gun Sight Co.) who shot the gun, torqued the barrel and was unable to correct the problem (Mine shot way left). They sent the gun back to S&W on my behalf. I ended up with a brand new replacement. Mixed feelings though, I had the last model year that was produced without a trigger lock.....man I hate those things. I guess what I'm saying is stay after them or if you have the gun back at this point, take it to a gunsmith as previously suggested. Good luck.
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Old July 9, 2009, 01:58 PM   #21
RDak
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Good luck!!

However, maybe I'm not understanding the problem?

Edited, I was confused with Maxx's original post.

Last edited by RDak; July 9, 2009 at 02:15 PM.
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Old July 9, 2009, 02:04 PM   #22
Mike Irwin
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"For decades, Colt adjusted the windage on their fixed sight revolvers by turning the barrel to cant the front sight in the direction needed. Oddly, I cant recall anyone complaining, but then maybe folks were less demanding than they are today."


Sad commentary on Colt's design/quality that they had to do that?
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Old July 9, 2009, 02:13 PM   #23
RDak
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You're right Mike, the more I think about it.

Maxx wants the front sight moved more to the right by turning the barrel to the right. That would make his shots hit more to the left than he was shooting.
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Old July 9, 2009, 02:58 PM   #24
.284
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I know I'm new but, I think a few of you are missing the point. He wants his gun fixed....regardless of the problem. What I don't understand is why he's getting the run around from S&W. I had great customer service and there is another thread exclaiming how great S&W is for servicing what they sell. What gives?
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Old July 9, 2009, 05:05 PM   #25
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sight

yrs ago I heard that they hit the frame with a mallet on side to adjust the windage and on top to adjust hight.sounds reasonable,but what do I know.
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