The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > Hogan's Alley > Handguns: The Revolver Forum

View Poll Results: Do you ever take your revolvers apart?
I have never taken a revolver apart, and would not. 23 12.99%
I have not, but would if I had to. 39 22.03%
I have, but don't like to for fear of losing/breaking something. 39 22.03%
I do, for every new revolver purchase. 41 23.16%
I can take apart and reassemble my revolvers blindfolded. 35 19.77%
Voters: 177. You may not vote on this poll

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old November 22, 2012, 06:56 PM   #51
Senior Member
Join Date: September 16, 2007
Posts: 712

I have and do, but have run into problems; a Dan Wesson Supermag(no sideplate)trigger group comes out from below and requires 3 hands to replace. Brought it to a local gunsmith, who kept it for 2 weeks and ordered me a new hand spring after breaking the one it had, gave it back to me as I had brought it to him, finally talked to the DW smith and he talked me through reassembly, great people!! I usually get a manuel with blow-up diagram of the gun and check if there are any websites/blogs specific to my gun, before opening now.
robhof is offline  
Old November 22, 2012, 08:22 PM   #52
Join Date: November 17, 2012
Posts: 34
My 3 screw Blackhawk was straight forward and I slow rust blued it. Its was not a problem make a few notes and look at it closely before you start removing parts snap some pics I think a single action is less of a challenge than doubles.

1911's are a piece of cake but there are a few "make sures" and always test ALL the functions for proper function before loading and chambering and firing.
There are some very good how to's on line if you look for them.

Ar-15's aren't rocket science but make sure of the make sures.

I had an acquaintance who did not put his 1911 back together correctly and he shot a hole thru the drywall in his kitchen when he chambered a round. I'll say no more.
TGSTGS is offline  
Old November 22, 2012, 08:49 PM   #53
Junior member
Join Date: January 1, 2007
Location: Idaho
Posts: 2,282
I don't know if I could stand having a shooter that I had not taken apart.
salvadore is offline  
Old November 22, 2012, 09:33 PM   #54
Senior Member
Join Date: July 9, 2004
Posts: 5,159
After buying Jerry Miculek's "Trigger Job" DVD several years ago (and watching it several times) I have taken apart a couple S&W K and N-frames.

I bought the rebound slide spring tool, but really could have gotten along without it. But I'm kind of a tool junkie

I don't make it a habit, and I still have not tried his stoning techniques, but one day I will...just have to figure out which revolver will be the guinea pig.
orionengnr is offline  
Old November 24, 2012, 06:08 PM   #55
Senior Member
Join Date: May 27, 2011
Location: Ohio-Kentucky - florida
Posts: 1,221
I like to take everything apart

Just bought a S&W model 10 and took it apart 2nd day after a little research. To me, part of the fun of collecting & shooting guns is taking them apart.
Garycw is offline  
Old November 25, 2012, 05:10 PM   #56
Join Date: November 25, 2012
Posts: 20

First off I am a new guy here and just recently found this forum and what appears to be a lot of interest in revolver shooting. I hope to be able to share a bit and learn more.

I must say you are one person who has a thorough technical grasp of S &W lockworks and what should and should not be done to these revolvers. I have worked on S&W’s for pin and plate shooters and the BE crowd on and off for close to 25 years and I honestly don’t think I can explain things quite as nicely and clearly as you do. If your work is half as good as your instructions you must be one hell of a mechanic. Okay I guess I have blown enough smoke up your you know what so maybe I can comment on this thread.

I have worked on everything from service revolvers that had little if any maintenance and literally rusted up in the holster so to speak and range rental guns that had horrendous amounts of rounds through them by people who abused them daily both intentionally and unintentionally. However I don’t agree with removing the side plate on these pieces as part of a regular regime of maintenance — it’s just not necessary. There is no call for lot of lube anywhere in the lockworks and honestly there are very few components that wear out on a regular basis. That is not to say these guns don’t get dirty and sometimes have problems but regular dismantling and lubing should not be in the mix according to any of the top S&W guys I know like Ron Power, Mr. Clark or even the S&W factory.

Those few times that I have run into cleaning related problems were with rental guns at a range that had digested thousands of rounds of reloads with dirty powders like Unique and Bullseye. Unique being one of the worst since with reduced range loads you get quite a bit of unburned powder flakes. The biggest problem is unburned power or residue accumulations under the extractor star back of the cylinder which can lock the gun up and render it unshootable for most owners. I like to relieve the back of the extractor star on the lathe and this typically eliminates this issue altogether. Other times I have seen carbon and crud that can find it’s way into the hand window but that is rare and most of the time doesn’t effect the performance of the gun. Also with dirty loads you will get a build up of carbon on the frame recoil shield behind the cylinder but that is easily cleaned with the cylinder opened and should be polished at bit.

If I were asked what part of a S&W DA revolver needed periodic cleaning and some lube I would say the extractor rod, center pin, springs the moving parts in the cylinder and maybe a dash on the yoke. For action or high usage shooters it is probably a good idea to periodically remove the yoke and cylinder and with the proper care clean the internals and lube a bit. Care must be taken to tighten the extractor rod to no more than 50 inch pounds and know which way the threads turn. All SS guns are LH thread and all 4 and 5 screw guns are RH but the three screw guns can be either and the design of the extractor rod end is the only way to tell. Once you know what you gun is write it down.

Don’t get me wrong I am all in favor of a gun owner knowing as much as he or she can on how their piece functions but like all things the more you know the more you realize how much you don’t know. Every revolver needs maintenance and care but I have to wonder just how much the average guy can tell looking at all the internals of a Smith and see what is really worn. Then you have to understand that a new replacement part most likely will not just drop in and work. If one part rides or works the next part and so on and so on isn’t it just common sense that you will end up with an accumulation of wear tolerances within the whole action that may just require real gunsmithing ? The question of measurable and acceptable wear on many of these parts is really illusive and many times a good smith does little more than modify or tweak those tiny riding surfaces by stoning and polishing the parts to improve performance.
garbler is offline  
Old November 25, 2012, 05:47 PM   #57
Senior Member
Join Date: November 18, 2002
Location: South east PA
Posts: 563
I've only been shooting them for 44 years and do not ever take them apart, even to take the sideplate off. If I saw a used revolver that I KNEW someone had taken apart, I would not buy it, period.

It's bad enough that some people feel they are instant experts on 1911's and take them apart to replace parts...I do not buy those used either-to many people "improve" them.

I am another gun-carrying liberal veteran.
dogngun is offline  
Old November 25, 2012, 06:55 PM   #58
Senior Member
Join Date: November 19, 2009
Posts: 3,008
I have taken apart my C & B revolvers . . . as far as my more "modern" ones . . no. My attitude is "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". My attitude on those is that if I have a problem, I know several gunsmiths I can take it to . . . they have far greater knowledge than I and I'm sure more access to needed parts if necessary.

Now if you were talking semis . . .yes I have. I still haven't taken my new Ruger MK III Target apart yet though . . . and I'm really not looking forward to it.
If a pair of '51 Navies were good enough for Billy Hickok, then a single Navy on my right hip is good enough for me . . . besides . . . I'm probably only half as good as he was anyways. Hiram's Rangers Badge #63
bedbugbilly is offline  
Old November 25, 2012, 06:59 PM   #59
Senior Member
Join Date: October 1, 2012
Posts: 561
Like any new firearm strip it down first to look it over , to clean and lube but may be also do some polishing on.
kahrguy is offline  
Old November 26, 2012, 09:03 AM   #60
Junior member
Join Date: January 1, 2007
Location: Idaho
Posts: 2,282
Ya know guys it aint rocket surgery. If you put lotsa rounds thru your shooter you really do owe it to yourself to take it apart and clean it. In two extreme cases I own a couple of M-60s that would come to a halt completely if they weren't disassembled and cleaned after firing.

I bought this guy and when I pulled the side plate off I had to chip the dried up grease and oil out of the action. It curently has the best double action that I have ever seen on a Colt.
salvadore is offline  
Old November 26, 2012, 09:16 AM   #61
Senior Member
Join Date: October 14, 2009
Location: Sunshine and Keystone States
Posts: 4,448
I enjoy knowing how they work and have been able to improve the action of several of my revolvers for Bullseye shooting. In other cases I have removed the ILS, and have also installed a DA hammer for one SD gun and bobbed the hammer for another.
spacecoast is offline  
Old November 26, 2012, 09:24 AM   #62
Senior Member
Join Date: February 2, 2007
Location: Iowa
Posts: 2,676
My option was left out:

*** I have no fear and have when I want or need too but I can't do it blindfolded.
L_Killkenny is offline  
Old November 26, 2012, 11:30 AM   #63
Bob Wright
Senior Member
Join Date: July 10, 2012
Location: Memphis, Tennessee
Posts: 2,596
L_Killkenny said:
My option was left out:

*** I have no fear and have when I want or need too but I can't do it blindfolded.
My option exactly.

Bob Wright
Bob Wright is offline  
Old November 26, 2012, 03:29 PM   #64
Senior Member
Join Date: December 13, 2007
Posts: 545
Most guns need a little tune up straight from the factory. I take pride in knowing how to make them better. I've worked on single actions, double actions, lever actions, ARs, semi-auto pistols, bolt actions and probably a few that I don't remember. That said, a man's got to know his limitations.
Jayhawkhuntclub is offline  
Old November 27, 2012, 10:34 PM   #65
Senior Member
Join Date: February 11, 2009
Posts: 280
I do on most guns but not any defense guns. I'm not afraid or I wouldn't do it but I am no expert.
Portland, Or
warnerwh is offline  
Old November 28, 2012, 01:14 AM   #66
Senior Member
Join Date: April 27, 2010
Posts: 553
My option was left out:

*** I have no fear and have when I want or need too but I can't do it blindfolded.
Where were you when I was trying to come up with different options for the poll? I like that answer too.

I recently picked up a used Taurus 94 that had a loose cylinder release latch. It didn't affect its function, so I bought it anyway, thinking I could fix whatever was wrong with it. It turned out to be a missing spring which keeps forward tension on the latch. Judging by the condition of the screws, someone must've taken off the side plate and lost the spring. I bought a small spring and JB welded a post to the bolt that the spring goes onto. It turned out way better than I thought it would.

The first revolver I took apart was a Ruger SP101, and I launched a tiny plunger into the middle of my messy basement. I still can't believe I found it. I also don't routinely take any revolver apart for cleaning. I might dissassemble it out of curiosity when new, or like the Taurus, if I wan't to fix something.

The Taurus I wouldn't be afraid to take apart again. The Ruger, I'd do with my hands and the trigger assembly in a ziplock bag.
Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did not do that is inconsolable."
-Sydney J. Harris
spanishjames is offline  
Old November 28, 2012, 01:31 AM   #67
Senior Member
Join Date: September 15, 2010
Posts: 627
Do you take your revolvers apart?
No, I do not.
NRA Distinguished Life Member

"Abraham Lincoln freed all men, but Sam Colt made them all equal." (post Civil War slogan)
therealdeal is offline  
Old November 28, 2012, 10:09 AM   #68
Bob Wright
Senior Member
Join Date: July 10, 2012
Location: Memphis, Tennessee
Posts: 2,596


Bob Wright
Bob Wright is offline  
Old November 28, 2012, 11:16 AM   #69
Junior member
Join Date: January 1, 2007
Location: Idaho
Posts: 2,282
I talked to a S&W customer service guy yesterday and he told me that S&W doesn't recommend removing the side plate on their revolvers, to which I responded, "how the **** do you clean them?" After further conversation he allowed that I wasn't a complete idiot and they weren't really worried about folks like me breaking down one of their shooters for cleaning. He went on to mention that the reason they didn't recommend removing the side plate was all the calls they get from customers complaing about a cracked frame and weren't comfy with people who didn't know what a side plate was removing one. Back in the late sixties and early seventies it wasn't unusual for a gun mag running articles on how to work on different guns including Colt D/As. They never told you how to disassemble one, they must have thought if you owned one you already knew. BTW S&W customer service is the best.
salvadore is offline  
Old November 28, 2012, 11:27 AM   #70
Junior member
Join Date: January 1, 2007
Location: Idaho
Posts: 2,282
This one I bought without getting to handle it first, the cylinder turned both ways. Had to completely disassemble the action and do some filing behind the bolt and now it is one of my most accurate shootters

salvadore is offline  
Old November 28, 2012, 06:33 PM   #71
Senior Member
Join Date: October 19, 2008
Posts: 635
Check out what the Ruger manual says is a basic field strip on a single six (or ten). About the only thing you don't do is remove the firing pin and the ejector rod/housing.
Zhillsauditor is offline  
Old November 29, 2012, 12:45 PM   #72
Senior Member
Join Date: March 9, 2012
Posts: 153
I feel that anyone with something as potentially dangerous as a handgun has an obligation to understand and maintain it. Some things I can replace or repair myself, somethings I can't. I have no reservations cleaning it and fixing those parts that I can.
Now for those that have reservations about cleaning the inner workings of your gun, I would like to ask if you have ever considered an ultrasonic cleaner? Harbor Freight sells a small inexpensive ultrasonic cleaner that I have used successfully with jewelry. It would be perfect for a modular trigger group or a rifle bolt. I can clean a ring to the point that I can't find dirt with a lupe and the ultrasonic cleaner will still find crud I missed.
rrruger is offline  
Old November 29, 2012, 05:53 PM   #73
Master Blaster 2
Junior member
Join Date: May 29, 2011
Posts: 895
Ive taken SA BP revolvers appart when I doa conversion or replace a part. Never had to on modern revolvers. They always work for over 40 years so far.
Master Blaster 2 is offline  
Old November 29, 2012, 09:22 PM   #74
Senior Member
Join Date: January 10, 1999
Location: South coast of Indiana
Posts: 116
Some I take apart; some I would not dare. These ol' hands ain't as strong as they used to be.
Too old to fight. Knees won't let me run.
Good reasons to carry.
marv is offline  
Old November 30, 2012, 07:48 PM   #75
Senior Member
Join Date: May 26, 2007
Posts: 1,164
I take mine down for a thorough cleaning after they have seen rough and dirty use. The OP mentioned taking taking off the side plate which infers revolvers other than Ruger. The Ruger Sixes are very easy to disassemble.
tekarra is offline  

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:44 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2016 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent:
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.12972 seconds with 8 queries