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M29-2 cylinder stuck?

Mr.PissyPantsMr.PissyPants Member Posts: 3,575
edited November 2005 in Ask the Experts
I just picked up a 29-2 today that I had purchased from a private party and transfered it through my local dealer.

Upon examining it the dealer and I noted that the cylinder was stuck. It has some slight play in it while the hammer is down. I cannot push the cylinder release button in. I can only cock the hammer when I pull the cylinder release button toward me, and then the cylinder will only wiggle slightly. When I ease the hammer down again the cylinder locks and again has a slight play to it.

Whats the deal? Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you.

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Comments

  • kingjoeykingjoey Member Posts: 8,636
    edited November -1
    Sounds like the cylinder latch is sticking. Had a similar problem on an old S&W M10, there was a bunch of lint and rust in the lockwork

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  • kingjoeykingjoey Member Posts: 8,636
    edited November -1
    Ya might try unscrewing the button and spraying a little Rem-oil in the mechanism in case it's sticking

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  • lrarmsxlrarmsx Member Posts: 791 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Check to see if the ejector rod has "unscrewed" itself. On those older S&W's, the ejector rod can unscrew itself during handling or use and then not allow the cylinder to be opened. The ejector rods on the later models screwed in the opposite direction, so they wouldn't unscrew (on their own) as the cylinder turned during use.

    If that turns out to be the case, simply screw in the rod while in the closed position. This can be a bit tricky since the ejector rod is shrouded on the 29-2, but give it a try. Usually it can be done with a little effort. Once the rod is in far enough, you will be able to open the cylinder normally. You can then either just make it hand tight or remove it and add a little lock tight (blue, not red). By doing so, it should prevent the ejector rod from unscrewing during use in the future.

    I have seen this on a number of older S&W revolvers. Of course it could be something to do with the cylinder release button, but the first thing I would check if I had it in MY hands would be the ejector rod being unscrewed.

    LRARMSX
  • Ray BRay B Member Posts: 11,822
    edited November -1
    I'd be inclined to unscrew the side-plate and watch the pieces move as it was cycled- The problem should be readily apparent.
  • TxsTxs Member Posts: 18,801
    edited November -1
    I don't believe it's going to be just a loose ejector rod, but it's possible this problem also exists. If it were only a backed out rod you wouldn't be having to pull the cylinder release to the rear. The thumbpiece would function normally, you just wouldn't be able to open the cylinder when you pushed it forward.

    I'd say to first make sure the rod is tight in case it's contributing to your problem and then go from there. There's a quick-fix to tighten it enough to get the cylinder open on left-hand thread models like yours. Press the knurled portion of the rod into the lug with your thumb to prevent it from turning, then cycle the action several times. As the cylinder rotates it will cause the rod to tighten.

    While you're up there, take some sort of soft tool and function the plunger in the barrel lug to make sure it moves freely. It's not likely, but it's stuck this will lock up the entire release mechanism.

    If this didn't do any good you're going to have to remove the sideplate to get anywhere.

    My wild guess would be that your problem is a burr on the cylinder release or someone has either replaced it's spring with one that's too weak or kinked it. The release has possibly moved so far back that it binds on the axis pin hole in the frame.

    If this still didn't clear things up, push the axis pin forward enough to get the cylinder open. Unscrew the ejector rod assembly and make sure someone hasn't either left out the axis pin spring or assembled things incorrectly.

    If you're uncomfortable with taking off the sideplate and removing internals, even someone with minimal armorer training could handle this for you. It's no major operation and shouldn't take more than a few minutes.
  • Mr.PissyPantsMr.PissyPants Member Posts: 3,575
    edited November -1
    Thanks for the help guys.

    KJ, I tried it dude, but its gotta be something else. No visible rust or wear anywhere, this baby is a safe queen. I still soaked the mechanism with Rem-Oil and still nothing worked.

    Irarmsx, I tried exactly what you said. The ejector rod is threaded so tight I can't get the leverage to turn it either clockwise or counter-clockwise. I rubbed my thumb raw last night trying to turn it, but as you know its shrouded and recessed anyway and getting any kind of grip on it is impossible.

    Txs, I will try some of your ideas first thing when I get home from work and report on the outcome.


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  • cajunmancajunman Member Posts: 50 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    How far does the cylinder release button slide forward? It should move at least 1/4". It releases the the center pin in the rear and pushes forward to unlatch the locking bolt that is housed in the lower portion of the barrel at the front of the extractor rod. If the cylinder latch button is moving the proper length the extractor housing could just be a little too long. You can trim it back.

    Remember the hammer has to be positioned at rest against the rebound slide. If someone has "Tinkered" with it in an attempt to do and action job this could have changed the position of the hammer so that the cylinder latch will not move forward.

    In all probability you will have to remove the side plate to take a look inside. Remove the screws, hold the revolver in your left palm with the side plate facing up and take a wooden or plastic screwdriver handle and strike the side of the frame normally covered by the grips. It might take several times but whatever you do DON'T pry the sideplate loose.

    If in fact you revolver is a safe queen you simply might have one of the guns that made it out of Springfield back in the 80's. I am retired now but worked for 10 years as a police armorer. It was not uncommon to have to completely refit a new revolver so that it would function. I had quite a few that had the same problem that yours has. The extractor rods were too long and had to be trimmed. One of the L Frames we received had a loose barrel and had to be returned for a new frame. Luckily Smith & Wesson has improved 100%.

    I hope this works for you.

    Cajunman
  • drobsdrobs Member Posts: 21,804 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by lrarmsx
    Check to see if the ejector rod has "unscrewed" itself. On those older S&W's, the ejector rod can unscrew itself during handling or use and then not allow the cylinder to be opened. The ejector rods on the later models screwed in the opposite direction, so they wouldn't unscrew (on their own) as the cylinder turned during use.

    If that turns out to be the case, simply screw in the rod while in the closed position. This can be a bit tricky since the ejector rod is shrouded on the 29-2, but give it a try. Usually it can be done with a little effort. Once the rod is in far enough, you will be able to open the cylinder normally. You can then either just make it hand tight or remove it and add a little lock tight (blue, not red). By doing so, it should prevent the ejector rod from unscrewing during use in the future.

    I have seen this on a number of older S&W revolvers. Of course it could be something to do with the cylinder release button, but the first thing I would check if I had it in MY hands would be the ejector rod being unscrewed.

    LRARMSX


    I think LRARMSX is right on. Sometimes you can get a tiny screw driver inbetween the ejector rod and the shroud push the rod in while pushing the cylinder latch. Just be careful not to scratch anything.

    That's how we usually did it at the range.

    Edit: forgot to add the other trick. Tape the right of the cylinder (2 or 3 layers) while pushing on the latch, hit the taped cylinder with a rubber mallet. This will usually get it open.


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  • Ronald J. SnowRonald J. Snow Member Posts: 1,346 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    The 29-2 ejector rod has a left hand thread. Use a wooden dowel, a blunt piece of plastic or any other non-maring material and tighten the ejector rod back in place. As you mentioned, it is nearly impossible to do with the bare fingers.
  • TxsTxs Member Posts: 18,801
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by Ronald J. Snow
    The 29-2 ejector rod has a left hand thread. Use a wooden dowel, a blunt piece of plastic or any other non-maring material and tighten the ejector rod back in place. As you mentioned, it is nearly impossible to do with the bare fingers.


    The poster states that his cylinder release latch remains in the forward position and has to be pulled to the rear, but the cylinder will still not open when it's all the way forward. He may have a backed out ejector rod, but something else is causing the failure of the thumbpiece to return to the rear on it's own.

    The S&W ejector rod screws into the cylinder and only shrouds the cylinder axis pin, which is what the cylinder release actually pushes forward to depress the plunger in the front locking lug. If the ejector rod unscrews it moves forward and encases this plunger, making it unable to swing out. The rod unscrewing has no effect on how the cylinder release presses the axis pin or the movement of the thumbpiece.

    As for tightening a backed-out ejector rod, you don't have to turn the rod itself. This rod screws into the cylinder in a left-hand direction. Due to the direction of the S&W's cylinder rotation you only have to hold the ejector rod still and function the action and rotate the cylinder. Normal rotation will cause the rod to screw itself back down into the cylinder. In other words, you screw the cylinder on to the rod instead of screwing the rod into the cylinder. Now you break out the tools to tighten it down properly.

    The immediate action drill when you find that the cylinder of a S&W revolver won't open is to pinch the ejector rod into the shroud using your thumb and index finger, then stroke/release the hammer a few times. If the gun is empty and you need to get the cylinder open quickly to perform a reload, just pinch the ejector rod as described and quickly dry fire it a few times. You'll be back in business immediately.

    Getting the cylinder open when this rod backs out slightly is really no big trick.
  • peabopeabo Member Posts: 3,098
    edited November -1
    The center pin (that locks the cylinder at the rear) is either broken or missing.

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