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Re-timing Revolvers

10902 Views 10 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  Doug Bowser
Had an interesting conversation with a friend today. We were discussing the frequency with which it would become necessary to re-time a revolver.

His take was about every 1500 rds....I took issue with it based many upon the fact that most revolvers I've had have way more than that through them without any issues.

So my question is

1. What are the symptoms that you see from a revolver...telling you its time to go see the smith? Lead blowback while firing? I guess that's telling you that the cylinder is not properly lining up with the forcing cone?

2. How many rounds does this typically take? For example...I would imagine an ICORE shooter would have to be real good friends with a gunsmith if this needed to be done every 1500 rds...As I'd imagine 500 rds a month would be pretty average for usage

For the sake of discussion...we'll say S&W revolvers

What say ya'll?
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DBChaffin said:
I'm no revolver expert, but...

I had the pleasure of shooting the Alabama State USPSA/IPSC match this weekend with a friend from Tennessee, Sam Keen. Sam started shooting a revolver a number of years ago with a goal of becoming proficient. He worked hard, practiced a lot, and is now one of 15 USPSA shooters in the country to have obtained a Grandmaster classification with a revolver. Of the 15, he is currently 10th in classification percentage. (Yes, Jerry Miculek is #1, and our own Johnny Brister from the MS Delta happens to currently be #2, but I digress).

I asked Sam about this thread as well as the S&W 625 .45ACP that he was shooting at the match. Some of you might not believe this, but I don't doubt him. He told me he has a little over 300,000 rounds through the very revolver he was shooting at the match, and that he put that number through it in 4-5 years. During that period, he broke the star, or the piece that actually ejects the brass from the cylinder as I understood him, and the firing pin broke rendering the gun inoperable until replaced. That's it. It's never had the timing adjusted or corrected, and he says it will still shoot about 2.5" at 25 yards if he does his part. About 90% of the rounds down range were lead bullets, which probably plays a part in the fact it still has some rifling left in the bore.

I also talked to a few revolver shooters at the local Magnolia USPSA match today, and none of them have had to have timing adjusted. One had the trigger pivot pin shear off recently and others had some equally strange issues along the way, but timing doesn't seem to be an issue in this crowd.

One of my objections to Colt's revolvers is, they get out of time easier than S&W. Yes, even the Python.
I agree with Mr. Bowser, as it is my understanding this is one of the major reasons you don't see Colt revolvers in USPSA competition very often. They can't take the abuse and do need to be tuned up much more often than Smiths. Another factor is the reverse cylinder latch which requires pulling rather than pushing, which is slightly more difficult when reloading quickly.

Granted the above information is from a small sampling, but USPSA shooters are pretty good at finding something's weaknesses and putting a lifetime (or lifetimes) worth of wear on equipment in a relatively short period of time compared to most shooters.
I believe that he put that many rounds down the bore, but man its hard to believe that he hasnt changed the barrel.
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