old Smith & Wesson - needs repair

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing Forum' started by Northman, Mar 31, 2013.

  1. Northman

    Northman New Member

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    I have a very old Smith and Wesson No. 3 Model in 44 calibre that needs repair. I can chock the handgun but the cylinder does not lock into place. In otherwords the cylinder rotates freely. How can I get this fixed ? Who out there is a good gunsmith that can do this for me ? I live in Canada and a little hesitant to ship this gun as it is a very old and expensive engraved antique. Tim
     
  2. robocop10mm

    robocop10mm Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    With the rise in interest created by the Cowboy Action shooters, there is probably someone in Canada with some degree of expertise. You might try the SASS web site. They might have suggestions.

    One answer may be fouling. Dirt has a nasty habit of keeping parts from working right. Give it a good cleaning.
     

  3. Northman

    Northman New Member

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    I try the SASS web site. Never thought to check with them.
     
  4. sicko

    sicko New Member

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  5. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    Welcome gentlemen to the FTF, How about stopping by "Introductions" and say "Hi"?

    Good schematic sicko! Based on what the OP has written, part 880 is not stopping the cylinder.
    That could be that spring 881 is not working, or part 880 is broke or part 908 is broke.

    Part 881 keeps pressure on part 880 which is moved by part 908.
    When cocked, the trigger lower portion is moved forward releasing part 880, and spring 881 pushes part 880 up, thus stopping the cylinder.
     
    SWSinTN likes this.
  6. Northman

    Northman New Member

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    Thanks everyone for the tip and I will look into these parts. Now I gotta find the schematics.
     
  7. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    Go back to sicko's post and click on the link he has provided.
     
  8. srtolly1

    srtolly1 New Member

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    I have worked on similar guns and danf_fl is right. Cylinder stop should be sticking out of the frame and should drop down when the gun is cocked, cylinder should rotate and the stop comes back up. You can probably watch this happen in the gap between the cylinder and the frame.
     
  9. sicko

    sicko New Member

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    Looks like I've found the right place for people that know what they are talking about :D
     
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  10. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    Peruse the forum. There are a lot of talented people here. And there is no charge for our advice (but you get what you pay for).
     
  11. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    Northman, Here is a quick check I would like you to do.

    Unloaded, cocked, inverted so grip is up.
    Try to rotate cylinder and see if cylinder stop catches.
     
  12. Northman

    Northman New Member

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    Well I finally had a look at the handgun. The hammer will not remain in the cocked position so I have to keep my thumb on the hammer. Every time I pull back the hammer the cylinder will rotate and if I spin the cylinder it can move freely and I can hear the clicking sound as it spins. So I will have to look closely at the diagram I was sent. Any suggestions ? Tim
     
  13. nitestalker

    nitestalker New Member

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    The S&W Number 3 large frame revolver has a cylinder safety. It has conventional cylinder lock slots. It also has elongated slots ahead of the cylinder latch slots.
    When the action is closed the gun goes into an automatic safety mode. The cylinder will turn freely in the elongated slots not aligning with the hammer. When the hammer is cocked the safety releases and the cylinder should lock each time the gun is cocked.
    This applys to the New Model Dbl. Action only.
     
  14. danf_fl

    danf_fl Retired Supporter

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    The clicking sound is normal. That is the pawl on the the ratchet area of the cylinder. And if the cylinder lock does not engage, the cylinder will rotate.
     
  15. srtolly1

    srtolly1 New Member

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    The last top break I worked on had some stuff caked it by the cylinder stop which prevented anything from working right. We can try to diagnose a problem from description only but AR some point it will have to come apart. Sounds to me like a cylinder stop spring after a good look at the diagram. You could try cocking the hammer and while cocked hold the trigger forward, hammer should stay back.

    I'm not a professional gunsmith, I love figuring out problems and I buy broken guns and fix them. If you aren't comfortable taking it apart take it to a professional, it is easy to make these old guns into junk if you aren't careful. Stay safe and never assume a gun is unloaded.
     
  16. SteveK

    SteveK New Member

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    Just a suggestion, try Pisco gunsmithing in Oregon. They are very good at gun repairs. Bob has worked on guns for around 50 years. The phone #541-396-5558.
     
  17. Northman

    Northman New Member

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    Thanks allot to everyone for their ideas. I will let you all know how I make out. To pull the hammer back does take a bit of effort but it will not stay cocked. Pulling the hammer back will rotate the cylinder though.