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S&W Revolvers: 1961 to 1980 3-Screw PINNED Barrel SWING-OUT Cylinder Hand Ejectors


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Old 03-25-2012, 09:36 PM
S&Wdave S&Wdave is offline
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Default Barrel ware

How do you tell the amount of ware in a barrel. I have a clean 15-3 DOB 1971. The barrel looks brite but beyond that I can't tell the amount of ware. I was told that when it stops shooting well. This was a PD carry gun for most of its prior life so I don't think it was used much.
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Old 03-25-2012, 10:20 PM
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I wouldn't worry too much about wearing out a Smith barrel. You would have to shoot a carload of jacketed bullets to ruin a .38 Special barrel. It will last forever with regular pressure lead bullet use.
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Old 03-26-2012, 08:16 AM
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Unless you're Jerry Miculek, I don't think you will ever wear out a barrel.

You could do "baseline" accuracy tests for it right now, to establish its "close to new" level of accuracy. Store these targets away and every few years get them out and compare them to its current capabilities. When you see a marked drop off in accuracy, you can worry about it then.

My guess is that any loss of accuracy will be more due to age of the shooter than to wear of the barrel, but you may be setting up a future excuse to buy a new gun!
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Old 03-26-2012, 08:36 AM
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You dont really have to worry about barrel wear on a modern handgun. It's kind of doubtful that tens of thousands of rounds have been put through it.
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Old 03-26-2012, 09:27 AM
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Dave, if you were to come on here and show where you had worn out a barrel on a Smith&Wesson revolver, you would probably be the first ever.
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Old 03-26-2012, 02:30 PM
S&Wdave S&Wdave is offline
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Thanks for the reply one and all. I will only worry about spelling wear right from now on!! I'm 72 so I don't think I'll wear it out. I have had a lot of great Smiths over the years but this Mod 15-3 Combat Masterpiece I picked up I think is the best. Thanks again.
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Old 03-26-2012, 07:51 PM
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you have a good one there dave...congrats!
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Old 03-26-2012, 08:33 PM
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I think that the only ones who wear out handgun barrels are the elite shooters and the Navy SEAL rescue types. Were talking 50 to 100 thousand rounds a year. By the time I would wear out a barre, I would have spent more money on sales tax on the ammo where I live than on the original gun purchase price. And it would not even be close! Even tho I reload for 17 cents a round. That would happen at about 30K rounds. I don't like to even think how much that would cost with factory defense type ammo, but it likes $30K bucks plus!


rat
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Old 03-26-2012, 08:39 PM
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To actually answer your question about measuring barrel wear, I think you could slug the barrel like is done to determine what size lead bullet to use. This involves firing an intentional squib round, shoving it out of the barrel, and then miking the groves in the soft lead slug.

rat
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Old 03-27-2012, 08:35 PM
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Spelling is a funny thing. In a recent post, I talked about a "warn barrel". Now, I know in that context the word is "worn" since in the distant past I taught English.

I guess I could have said that I was trying to warn everyone that the barrel was worn.
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Old 03-28-2012, 07:52 AM
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MOST Police Dept. Revolvers were carried a lot and shot very little. Most LEO's only fire their guns when they have to qualify and usually are not big into guns. Not insulting LEO's, and there are a few that are into shooting and will shoot their Duty guns for fun, but the average Cop shoots very little and only when they are required to. Bottom line here is that I sincerely doubt a PD revolver would ever be shot enough to wear out the barrel.

I used to teach a few Cops how to shoot because they were in jeopardy of being suspended due to their failure to qualify multiple times. They both did finally learn to shoot better and did qualify, but neither one them ever shot their guns for fun or practiced anymore than they HAD to.

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Old 03-28-2012, 03:41 PM
S&Wdave S&Wdave is offline
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Hope to go to the range and shoot this puppy next week. If it shoots as good as it looks I made a good investment. There may be a lot of Combat Masterpieces out there but they don't seem to last long.
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Old 03-28-2012, 03:59 PM
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I'd think that about the only to wear a revolver barrel is by excessive cleaning rod scrubbing at the muzzle. And that would take years.
M1s show this after decades of careless scrubbing with steel rods.
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Old 03-28-2012, 06:56 PM
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I actually did buy a 686 once that did have the crown washed out on one side by improper cleaning. The rifling on the one side at the muzzle was almost completely gone.
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Old 03-28-2012, 07:18 PM
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OP,

You picked a great gun. My 15-3 is by far my favorite shooter. I bought it LNIB a couple years ago and it goes with me every time I go shooting.

Once, just to test it out, I turned my back to the target and fired one round in the opposite direction with both eyes closed.

The bullet traveled all the way around the globe and pierced the dead center of the bull just before it fell to the floor. True story.

That thing refuses to miss!
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Old 03-29-2012, 07:00 AM
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Welcome to the Forum! Like was said, your 15, probably has seen few rounds. I don't have one, but I have a 67 no dash from 1973. (stainless version) Fine guns to say the least. Enjoy your 15! I bet you can't wear it out! Bob
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Old 03-29-2012, 07:09 AM
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If the barrel looks bright, it has probably seen few rounds and (just as importantly) had good care, or at least wasn't neglected. In addition to too-vigorous cleaning, leaving water or anything corrosive in the bore may cause damage; nothing to obsess about, and rare in the era of non-corrosive primers.
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Old 06-28-2020, 12:49 PM
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Unless you own one of the snake guns by Colt you will have nothing to worry about.
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Old 06-28-2020, 01:00 PM
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In his book " Fast and Fancy Revolver Shooting "-published in 1934-Ed McGivern has pictures of one hole machine rest groups fired through S&W K-22s with over 200,000 rounds fired through them. As noted, improper cleaning does more harm, for extensive shooting lead bullets and light loads are best.
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Old 06-28-2020, 09:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by riverrat38 View Post
To actually answer your question about measuring barrel wear, I think you could slug the barrel like is done to determine what size lead bullet to use. This involves firing an intentional squib round, shoving it out of the barrel, and then miking the groves in the soft lead slug.

rat
To measure a bore I never used that method!

Take an oversize round ball, letís say .375Ē. Support the barrel in a padded vise muzzle up. Place the round ball in the bore. Use a dead blow hammer, leather mallet or even a stick of firewood and start the ball down the bore. Continue to push the ball with a metal ramrod or cleaning rod. Catch it when it exits the breech a measure it. Remember most S&W revolvers have 5 grooves so you can not just measure across the lands to determine bore size.

Kevin
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Old 06-28-2020, 09:49 PM
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For the decade I competed in PPC, I probably fired 1000-1500 rounds, (more in the spring, summer and fall outdoor season) a week depending on my competitions and practice. This was not equally divided among 4 revolvers. So I easily fired 10000 rounds a year though my revolvers. They improved the more I shot them and so did I.

Donít worry, njoy shooting you Moel 15-3.

Kevin
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Old 06-28-2020, 10:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S&Wdave View Post
Thanks for the reply one and all. I will only worry about spelling wear right from now on!! I'm 72 so I don't think I'll wear it out. I have had a lot of great Smiths over the years but this Mod 15-3 Combat Masterpiece I picked up I think is the best. Thanks again.
Don't worry we are not the spelling police.
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