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Old January 5, 2018, 12:07 AM   #1
arquebus357
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S&W Model 15 bolt

My 1966 model 15 has a 2 piece bolt. It doesn't seem to operate as smoothly as my S&W's with the 1 piece bolt. Would a 1 piece bolt be a drop-in replacement ?
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Old January 5, 2018, 01:20 AM   #2
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Old January 5, 2018, 02:37 AM   #3
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I'm sorry, that doesn't seem right. The S&W Model 15 is a K-frame revolver in 38 Special. Are we talking about the same firearm?

The part usually called the bolt is the part that stops the rotation of the cylinder. It sits inside the lower part of the frame in front of the trigger and protrudes through the bottom of the frame and intercepts the cylinder bolt notch to stop the rotation of the cylinder. The other part called a bolt is the cylinder bolt or cylinder latch. It is the part that pushes on the center pin and unlatches the cylinder when you push on the thumb latch pad. Neither of these parts is 2-piece. Are we talking about the same part?
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Old January 5, 2018, 01:28 PM   #4
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Very sorry..

I'm referring to the part that is pressed forward to release thr cylinder. My S&W model 15-2 (1966) revolver has a part that fits in the frame that actually pushes on the cylinder release pin. Then it has the part that slides back and forth that the thumb piece is attached to. My other S&W revolvers this is ONE piece. And, no it's not broken.

So I'm just wondering if the 2 piece bolt can be replaced with the 1 piece bolt.

Looking at parts resources I can only find 1 piece bolts. If the 1 piece is an improvement I would like to get one installed.

Last edited by arquebus357; January 5, 2018 at 01:58 PM.
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Old January 5, 2018, 04:01 PM   #5
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I have been gunsmithing for 30 years, and I have never seen a 2-piece cylinder bolt. Doesn't mean they're not out there, I just have never seen one.

Since the same design 1-piece cylinder bolt will fit every K-frame made from the 1930s to present, I would say that yes, it will fit.
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Old January 5, 2018, 08:11 PM   #6
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The bolt has always been one piece. There is a spring and plunger behind it.

Now, there is a front locking lug bolt on the barrel. Is that fitted correctly? I had to fit one as part of my exit exam at TSJC. Lucky me (it wasn't hard).
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Old January 5, 2018, 09:21 PM   #7
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No..honestly guys it's two pieces. It's like you took the bolt ans sawed off the little nose piece that fits in recoil shield. Then made a separate nose piece complete with a flange to prevent it from dropping out of the front. Sorry, I thought this would be a simple question.

I think I will see if the guys on the S&W forum have ever seen one like this.

Many thanks.
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Old January 5, 2018, 09:58 PM   #8
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I've worked on old WW II Victory model S&W and it had a one piece bolt. Most of the S&W revolvers I worked on were from the '70s-'80s and they were all one piece. I'm intrigued.
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Old January 5, 2018, 11:30 PM   #9
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I have the AGI DVD on S&W revolvers and the gunsmith, Ken Brooks, says this about installing the bolt.

He doesn't actually say anything about a 2 piece bolt, he says that some bolts can be installed by compressing the little spring/plunger in the rear of the bolt groove and then just dropping the front into the groove. I can install this 2 piece bolt that way, but not, the normal, 1 piece bolt. For the 1 piece bolt, I need to insert that nose piece into the recoil shield and then drop the rear of the bolt into place. So Ken must be aware of these somehow.

My 15-2 is from 1966 so it's not that old. If I get an answer from The S&W forum, I will post that.
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Old January 6, 2018, 11:56 AM   #10
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Your installation technique is correct. Nose first an then compress the plunger and push the tail dwon into the frame.

Can you post a pic of the two-piece bolt?
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Old January 7, 2018, 03:07 PM   #11
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The guys at S&W forum were also mostly skeptical. Except that one said he had a 2 piece bolt in a J frame also from 1966. It would seem that S&W shipped some revolvers sometime in 1966 with 2 piece. Actually, I think I will keep it. It's much easier to install than the one piece with less danger of launching that spring and plunger. As long as you remember to first install that nose piece into the recoil shield.

I took my model 15-2 apart to photograph said bolt.


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Old January 7, 2018, 05:26 PM   #12
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Wow! I have not seen anything like that before.
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Old January 9, 2018, 05:31 AM   #13
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I've never seen one like that before either. Not that I've pulled that many of the bolts out compared to other parts, but that is certainly unique in a S&W.
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Old January 9, 2018, 08:27 PM   #14
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Thanks. Count me in as a first timer to see that too.
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