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  1. #1
    crazygoaliesteve's Avatar
    crazygoaliesteve is offline Junior Member
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    problem with my 4in model 19

    hey everyone.......i was given a model 19 for free by my father and a problem just happened. the cylinder keeps getting caught up when i try and open it to eject the shells. i have to use alot of force to get it open. it rotates perfect when firing though. anyone know what can be causing this? i took it to a gunsmith and he did a minor adjustment for free, but it only fixed the problem for like 75 shots. any input would be great, and if anyone knows how to fix this, that would be great too. thanks!

  2. #2
    DJ Niner's Avatar
    DJ Niner is offline HGF Forum Moderator
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    This is a common problem with S&W revolvers, usually caused by the extractor rod loosening up during firing. When the rod gets loose, it backs-out of the cylinder slightly, making it "too long" and preventing it from coming free at the front (under the barrel, at the front lug) when the cylinder release is pushed forward. If it gets REALLY loose, it will prevent cylinder rotation and firing, as well as opening.

    To fix it, first you have to get the cylinder open (on an empty gun, of course; double check, please). Once open, you can use padded pliers (thick leather works best) to tighten the rod, with one VERY IMPORTANT NOTE: the rod is a left-hand thread on most guns made after WWII, so you have to tighten it in the OPPOSITE direction of a normal screw-threaded part. If you keep turning it and turning it and it's not stopping, you are probably turning it the wrong way, and if you turn it too far, it will pop out of the the cylinder, and you might loose it (or other parts it holds in place). Get it good and snug, and check it regularly. If you notice the sticky cylinder release problem returning, stop shooting and tighten it before shooting any more (again, on an unloaded gun only). Be careful about over-clamping it when tightening the rod; I've seen a few pinched/crushed by folks using Vise-Grips, or an actual bench vise.

    If it becomes a regular problem, some folks recommend removing it, cleaning and drying the threads on the rod and inside the cylinder, then adding a tiny dab of blue LocTite to keep it from working loose in the future. This can interfere with needed disassembly later on, though, and it can also be overdone (put too much screw glue in/on the threads, and you might stick something inside the cylinder that you didn't want stuck).

    Hope this was helpful.

  3. #3
    Dsig1's Avatar
    Dsig1 is offline Member
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    Very helpful advice DJ. My cylinder was freezing up after 200 shots and I had difficulty opening it as you state. I cleaned it thoroughly but the next time it would seize after 150 shots...I took it to a smith who disassembled and cleaned it out well and reassembled tightly. From all of my shooting while it was loose, powder got into the action and gunked it up. If yours has been loose for some time and the cylinder turn starts to tighten, you are probably experiencing the same problem. Be ready for it. Good luck and good shooting.

  4. #4
    crazygoaliesteve's Avatar
    crazygoaliesteve is offline Junior Member
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    thanks for answering everyone! i just dropped it off with my local gunsmith today and he found some more problems with it. thank god i didnt try shooting it again! thanks again

  5. #5
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    Good luck

  6. #6
    Baldy's Avatar
    Baldy is offline Senior Member
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    The pre 19-4's did not have the dirt sheild that all the later models have and dirt and gum would get in them and lock them up. You do what DJ Niner told you and you should be good to go. Good luck.

  7. #7
    had3nuf's Avatar
    had3nuf is offline Junior Member
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    One other peice of advice to add when tightening ejector rods place a couple of empty casings in the cylinder before using your pliers it helps to relieve pressure on your extractor pins.

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