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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
3 years ago I picked up a 629 44 mag backpacker. Ive ran about 800 rounds through it and had the common issue with ejector rod comming loose and giving problems.

The other day I was at the range, while shooting it I had a misfire. Not thinking much of it I continued to shoot till I hit my 6th round (as I was counting). I then opened it up to find there was no indent on one of the rounds. I positioned the round, closed the cylender and fired no problem.

I continued to shoot, now paying attention to the gun closely. Sure enough another misfire. This time I stopped shooting and carefully opened the cylender being sure to keep the orientation of the round, to my suprise the cylender was positioned with a already fired round lined up with the barrel. So Im thinking this is not possible or the cylender failed to advance even though the hammer was cocked & pulled.

Now paying more attention I watched the cylender advance before every shot (shooting double action). Sure enough it happened again 2 more times. Each time I specifically watched the cylender as cocking and the only thing I can think is after the shot the cylender rotated back. (possible on the relaese of the trigger from the back stroke it reverse cycled the cylender? I dont know? But each time a fired round was lined up with the barrel, that much I am sure of.

During the last 3 events I marked the cylender and found they did not happen on the same cylender position. I also inspected the cylender rotator mechanism and there are no visual marks or defects, including the arm that turns the cylender appears to look as it should ( to the non-gunsmith eye)

I do not reload or shoot reload ammo & shoot only 44 mags through it.

I have tried to reproduce the incident without shooting actual rounds unsecussfully.


Thanks for any help.:37-36ls:
 

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It sounds like a broken pawl spring (the pawl is the lever that turns the cylinder). With the chambers empty point the barrel upwards and cock it & release the trigger a few times, if the spring is broken the pawl won't work in this position but usually will when pointed down. You can verify this by opening the cylinder & by holding the release forward work the action to see if the pawl is coming out to turn the cylinder when pointed upwards. The spring is fairly cheap @ www.gunpartscorp.com or www.midwayusa.com . If you're a handy tinkerer replacing the spring isn't too complicated a repair & there's plenty of good help here; however the pawl itself must be fitted to work correctly. If it isn't a broken pawl spring give a yell back & we'll go from there. I wouldn't shoot this gun in this condition.
 

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My recommendation is to get it to a gunsmith if you don't feel you can troubleshoot and fix it yourself. It sounds as if somethings been shot loose. It won't reproduce itself without the impact /recoil of a live shot. More than likely it's nothing major, but a good gunsmith should be able to discover the issue, and resolve it pretty quickly. If there isn't a gunsmith in the area you live in that you trust, you could send it to the S&W Service Center and have them fix it. Shipping won't be cheap, but it'll get fixed correctly the first time in.

Best wishes in getting it fixed right away,
Gearchecker
 
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Good idea...goodidea I liked the way you put that...."If you don't feel you can trouble shoot"... because shooting that again will be trouble...!!!!
 

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I have never had this happen with a 629, but have had it happen on occasion with my 500. i believe that what may be happening is that under recoil, the spring that holds tension on the cylinder stop bolt may become compressed which would leave the cylinder free to move for a split second. because of the direction of the rifling, the recoil will naturally torque your hand counter clock wise and while the cylinder is unlocked, it will then rotate it to the previously fired case. at least this is how it was explained to me.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I checked the pawl spring as mentioned and it seems to be working. With the cylender open and working the action I can see the pawl come out and move twards the top of the gun. While doing this in the middle of a trigger pull I can push the pawl lever back in twards the back of the gun but not down twards the bottom of the gun. It does appear to be spring loaded and although I can push it back in, it returns out as I move my finger off of it. (all while pointed up).

Although I have not performed any gunsmithing, I do enjoy tinkering around with things and figguring them out.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I have never had this happen with a 629, but have had it happen on occasion with my 500. i believe that what may be happening is that under recoil, the spring that holds tension on the cylinder stop bolt may become compressed which would leave the cylinder free to move for a split second. because of the direction of the rifling, the recoil will naturally torque your hand counter clock wise and while the cylinder is unlocked, it will then rotate it to the previously fired case. at least this is how it was explained to me.
Crazy, I know its different, but If I pull the trigger back just very slightly, I can turn the cylender either cw or ccw, I wonder if under recoil return this same type condition is met?
 

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I'm moving this to the gunsmithing forum. It'll soon get lost in this forum.
 

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Crazy, I know its different, but If I pull the trigger back just very slightly, I can turn the cylender either cw or ccw, I wonder if under recoil return this same type condition is met?
It has been known to happen. That would indicate the timing is slightly slow (the pawl is a few thousanths short, the spring a bit too weak or the cylinder lock isn't popping up quite quick enough or is too short). Timing a revolver can be complicated, I'd help if you were in my neighborhood. However, S&W will repair it for free, I'd send it to them. Sorry I couldn't be of more help.
 

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i also have this problem with my 629-1, but here is what i have observed. I can put about 12 to 16 rounds of 44 mag through it with no problem but then the misfire, i have seen it do it and it is not the cylinder rotating to the last fired round, it is just not advancing to the next. i thing it is heat related as 44 special rounds will fire all day with no problem. just got it back from a gunsmith that said it had no problems but on the 12th round it did it again! any andwers on your post?
 

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The phenomenum you're describing is called cylinder float. It's caused by the cylinder stop sucking back into the frame during recoil, allowing the cylinder to rotate backwards. A sure indicator is fired brass with primers having two firing pin indents. It is most common with high recoil loads, especially in the smaller, lighter guns although I've had it on two 6 1/2" M29-2's. This particular issue is one of the main driving forces behind the implementation of the Endurance Package although there was a time when Smith & Wesson refused to acknowledge the problem existed. Also, guns with the screw in front of the trigger guard seem less prone to this malady. The fix is a stronger return spring for the cylinder stop.

Incidentally, Smith & Wesson revolvers don't have pawls and cranes, they have hands and yokes.:)

Bruce
 
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