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The Gap Between The Cylinder And Barrel

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Old 08-25-2008, 09:22 PM   #11
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It REALLY gets interesting when you shoot a revolver that is out of timing...another reason I don't use public outdoor ranges.
Also, if anyone is considering shooting BP revolvers - DO NOT FORGET TO APPLY GREASE OVER THE BULLETS! That's a mistake you will NEVER repeat

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Old 08-26-2008, 02:03 PM   #12
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A small gap is needed to allow the cylinder to rotate freely at all temperature extremes. Yes, steel expands when hot (even high quality steel). A small amount of gas escapes from the cylinder gap when the bullet is fully in the barrel (except with Nagant revolvers). The forcing cone (the back end of the barrel) is as the name implies, cone shaped. It funnels the bullet into the barrel allowing for a small amount of play in the cylinder.

If you do not see a small gap between the cylinder and barrel you likely have a problem called "end shake cylinder" in S&W vernacular. This is caused by the crane/yoke (the part that holds the cylinder to the frame) being shortened by peening. This can be fixed by either stretching the crane or shimming it.
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Old 08-26-2008, 02:26 PM   #13
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Tell me about poor timing!

When I was a kid my first handgun was an old Colt New Service in .45 Colt. This was an ex-Mounted Police gun, originally in .455 caliber. It had seen a lot of service before coming into my hands. I did some of my earliest handgunning with this gun. After several years of use, I opened up the cylinder to eject empties and several little "half moons", or crescents of lead fell into my palm. I continued to shoot the gun that way, cocking the hammer and then rotating the cylinder into index by hand. Finally found a new hand, or pawl, to rectify the situation.

This gun later became a customized .44 Special.

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