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Discussion Starter · #1 ·

I just bought a used S&W 586-3.
I like it but one cylinder locks up a little loose
and i see small shavings of brass from said ofending
I don't see any overt notch damage.
I need your help cause my only other handgun
is a colt diamondback that locks tight like a ferarri
and i don't know about what is normal for a S&W.
what are my options??
a) use it -- as in -- it's normal S&W behaviour
b) throw it in the river cause it might be unsafe
c) get an oversized cylinder lock job
d) send it to the factory to get it fixed
e) don't use that cylinder
f) something else i havn't thought of yet

Thanks in advance and any info is greatly apreciated

Inactive account
7,804 Posts
Hi, Gary:
I did a little re-organizing, hope you don't mind.

I'm not the world'd leading expert on S&W, as I've only got one. OK, they don't lock up as tight as a Colt, but each system has it's advantages and disadvantages. Check out ribbonstone's posts in this thread.

OK, the notches look good, so you should have the same amount of slack on each chamber, but you say you don't. I think the correct way to check a S&W is, with the gun unloaded of course, to cock the gun, then lower the hammer and check it with the trigger held back. As soon as you release the trigger the hand comes off the ratchet and the cylinder loosens up. I wonder if one of the lugs on the ratchet is worn more than the others, or dinged?

Another thing. There's 2 tiny pins in the back of the cylinder that align the extractor star. Check to see if they're in place.

One of the old S&W hands may be able to help you more than I can.


2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I think i solved the problem.
simple enough
I just scrubbed everything with solvent
for a really long time and now lockup is the same
and positive for all cylinders.
Gunk under the star ????
in the action ?? something
Never dawned on me nobody had ever cleaned the poor thing before.
Now like brand new -- once i got all the internals all
scrubbed it's almost too new and stiff...
I have to let the sore skin on my hand mellow before i go
try again with it but i bet now no more shaved brass.

738 Posts

I was reading your post and thinking of an answer. Then your solution caught me surprise. Duh........:confused:
I realized that I have read so much, that I have lost track of basic trouble shooting.
You bought a used gun, and had no idea of it's history.
When I buy any gun, the first thing I do is disassemble it and give it a really good cleaning.
So your post should stand out as a reminder to us.


When you have trouble, clean it first. Then look for mechanical problems.

I'll remember it next time.

One suggestion about lubeing a S&W. I've done this for years with good results on blued S&W's. When I take them apart for cleaning, I always lube the rebound slide on all sides, and the hammer and trigger pivots, as well as the hand and slot with Outers Gunslick grease. I've never had an action job done on a S&W. Never used it on a stainless one though.

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