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Old February 27, 2006, 07:54 AM   #1
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Polishing, stoning, etc...


I just read a thread somewhere about changing the springs in a S&W 642 and polishing some of the trigger area using 600 grit sandpaper.

I recently did a "rampectomy" on a 380 semi and used a Makita drill wth a sanding bit [very steady hands :-)] and then I "polished" it by hand with 'OOOO' steel wool [shiny, smooth AND fixed my feeding problem].


What is meant by stoning and/or polishing and what is the "right" way to do it?

Can you just use sandpaper and steel wool like I did?

Isn't 600 kind of rough to finish with?


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Old February 27, 2006, 09:28 AM   #2
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Polishing a feed ramp is very different from polishing the trigger mechanism !!You really have to know what you're doing . No Drill or Dremel , No sandpaper only fine stones by hand . No rounding of contact surfaces or changing angles .... BTW anything finer than 400 grit for a feed ramp is just for show !!
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Old February 27, 2006, 04:50 PM   #3
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Thanks Mete!

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Old February 27, 2006, 05:41 PM   #4
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For years I have used a dremel with rag polishing wheel to polish feed ramps. Flitz metal polish or any good chrome polish has worked for me. If the ramp is rough, I will smooth with 400 wet/dry and then finish witht he dremel. When it looks like it was chromed I know I am done. All of my autoloaders feed even hollow-points with no problems. I also pay close attention to the chamber. Some barrels have rough chambers and I polish them too. I have made some polishing sticks out of Hardwood doweling that holds a strip of crocus cloth. Chucked in a drill it smooths the chamber real nice.
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Old February 27, 2006, 09:50 PM   #5
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The main problem with S&W triggers and hammers are that they are case-hardened, and it is very easy to cut through that very thin hardening even with emery paper or polishing compound, let alone a hand grinder or file.

Once that hard surface is cut through, the softer steel underneath will wear rapidly until the hammer won't stay cocked and the gun becomes dangerous.

Some smoothing of the surfaces can help if done right. But most of the folks who decide to DIY with a hand grinder or even a stone end up buying new parts. Be careful and spare the heavy hand.

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Old February 27, 2006, 10:37 PM   #6
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I have used 400 grit to smooth up a bolt on a relatively inexpensive savage rifle.

But the most success I have had with making an action, particularly a trigger group, work smoother has been from using a product called moly fusion.

Its a liquid moly treatment, its easy to use, does not cost much and you are not going to ruin anything. The effects from it have always been noticable and pleasing.

The previous posts on cutting through the surface hardening on any part are well worth paying attention to. You can easily ruin a part and make a dangerous gun.

After trying the moly fusion one time it became the standard treatment for all of my pistols and rifles. At least the ones I can fully detail strip and put back together.

I don't think there is a general rule of thumb to answer your question with because there are so many differences between guns. What works for one may cause you a problem with another.
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