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Old 06-20-2018, 07:29 PM
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Default What to do with this Model 63? UPDATED WITH RESULTS OF REAM JOB.

I bought it sight unseen - an old cop friend's neighbor had gotten it for his daughter, but the gun was plagued with sticky extraction. He sent it to Smith, and they returned it saying it was an obsolete gun and they wouldn't work on it.

I paid $450, thinking I could polish out the chambers a bit. First range visit I noticed the rounds dropped in very easily, and then stuck hard after firing. I worked the chambers over with some polishing compound and Q-tips, and followed with a little teflon spray, also applied lightly with a Q-tip.

I used shorts, subsonics, and standard velocity rounds. All stuck still, and could only be ejected by judicious whacks with a mallet.

I then looked at the letter that Smith had sent - they diagnosed oversized charge holes, and they had no replacement cylinder.

I would bet it was a little sticky when it was made, then a previous owner (not the guy I bought it from) got overzealous in polishing the chambers, thereby making it far worse.

I've got no complaints with the seller - he said it was sticky, and he included the letter. I should have asked him exactly what it said, but that's my fault, not his. (The gun was shipped from Idaho)

So I guess these are my options.

- Buy a replacement 63 cylinder from eBay, knowing I may be getting another problem child.

- Buy a replacement .22 mag cylinder, either stainless or blue. The cylinders are the same length, only the chambering is different. I know the .22 magnum bore is .224 and the .22 LR bore is .223, but I'm not going to worry about a thousandth of an inch. If I explode, I explode.

- Ream this cylinder out to .22 mag. I can get a reamer for about a hundred bucks, or try to find one to rent.

(Yes, I did check to see if it was already reamed out. No go on any .22 mag ammo I had.)

- Try to find a gunsmith to ream it out.

- Leave it as is and use the mallet.

It shoots great, other than this issue.

Your thoughts?

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Old 06-20-2018, 08:00 PM
kudzu3 kudzu3 is offline
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I'm certainly no expert, but I believe you'd be better off keeping the mallet handy. I think the magnum idea is a bad one.
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Old 06-20-2018, 08:15 PM
mtgianni mtgianni is offline
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Find a gunsmith who will rebore the bbl and ream cylinders to 32 H&R.
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Old 06-20-2018, 08:16 PM
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Gee...I had no idea that the parts were so expensive. I see a cylinder on eBay going for $190.00...I'm not sure why kudzu thinks the magnum idea is bad. After all, that was one of the original options, and you could always try to find an extra 22 LR cylinder later, perhaps at a lower price. I might give that some consideration. 22 mag now, 22 LR later.

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Old 06-20-2018, 08:16 PM
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Look for another .22 cylinder would be my recommendation
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Old 06-20-2018, 08:20 PM
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Id do both the magnum and look for a new cylinder
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Old 06-20-2018, 09:20 PM
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This is not an unusual thing. My son has a 63, and I have a 17-1 and after some shooting the empties get very sticky. I just run a brush and dry cloth through them after each 25-30 shots and the problem is much improved. I found that keeping the chambers dry makes a big difference.
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Old 06-20-2018, 09:34 PM
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Why not just buy or rent a standard .22 LR chamber reamer and try that first? The factory reamer might have been at its end of life and under sized. You could probably turn it with your fingers and fix it. You can always go to .22 MRF, too, if you want. I've reamed a couple Ruger cylinders to .22 MRF by hand. Oil, turn, check, repeat!
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Old 06-20-2018, 09:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sigp220.45 View Post
- Buy a replacement .22 mag cylinder, either stainless or blue. The cylinders are the same length, only the chambering is different. I know the .22 magnum bore is .224 and the .22 LR bore is .223, but I'm not going to worry about a thousandth of an inch. If I explode, I explode.

- Ream this cylinder out to .22 mag. I can get a reamer for about a hundred bucks, or try to find one to rent.

(Yes, I did check to see if it was already reamed out. No go on any .22 mag ammo I had.)
Okay, I'm not too embarrassed to ask: If a .22 magnum bore is .224 and a .22 LR bore is .223... and if a .22 magnum round won't drop in... how oversized does oversized have to be to create this sticking problem? We know it has got to be something less than .001" oversized in this case, right?
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Old 06-20-2018, 09:50 PM
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Okay, I'm not too embarrassed to ask: If a .22 magnum bore is .224 and a .22 LR bore is .223... and if a .22 magnum round won't drop in... how oversized does oversized have to be to create this sticking problem? We know it has got to be something less than .001" oversized in this case, right?
Its because a .22 LR uses a heel-type bullet, so the case is the same diameter as the bullet. A .22 Magnum bullet sits inside the case, and the case is a larger diameter. So a magnum chamber is larger, even though the bullets are nearly the same.
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Old 06-20-2018, 09:55 PM
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Okay, I'm not too embarrassed to ask: If a .22 magnum bore is .224 and a .22 LR bore is .223... and if a .22 magnum round won't drop in... how oversized does oversized have to be to create this sticking problem? We know it has got to be something less than .001" oversized in this case, right?
The bore size refers to the diameter of the barrel. The sticking problem refers to the cases expanding into oversize chambers in the cylinder.
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Old 06-20-2018, 10:03 PM
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For all you know the cylinder holes aren't even round. Take it to a good machinist not a gunsmith. A good machinist can tell you and they don't need a reamer to fix it if out of round. Reamers are for people who don't know how to do precision work. Your engines cylinders don't have reamed holes neither should your revolver unless you want a hack job by a so called gunsmith.
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Old 06-21-2018, 05:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sigp220.45 View Post
Its because a .22 LR uses a heel-type bullet, so the case is the same diameter as the bullet. A .22 Magnum bullet sits inside the case, and the case is a larger diameter. So a magnum chamber is larger, even though the bullets are nearly the same.
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The bore size refers to the diameter of the barrel. The sticking problem refers to the cases expanding into oversize chambers in the cylinder.
Thank you gentlemen. I should have asked my question without the quote. Trying again...

Question: How much does a cylinder chamber have to be oversize in order to create an ejection problem in a .22 LR revolver?

I ask this because I too have ejection problems (sticking) with a couple of my .22 LR revolvers.
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Old 06-21-2018, 07:21 AM
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Usually with S&W K 22 the problem is tight chambers, not loose ones. I imagine they use the same reamers on the J frames. You get a cylinder that was reamed near the end of a reamers life you get tight and not quite perfect chambers. I rented a cylinder chambering reamer from 4D rentals. I think I did like 6 of my K22 and an old Taurus 22 I have. Some of them had various degrees of extraction problems. When I reamed them I got a little bit out of each chamber. No more problems. S&W is know for tight 22lr chambers. This may well be your problem and not tight chambers.The cost of renting a reamer is well worth the $45 it cost when you include shipping. You could of course rent a 22 mag cylinder reamer and go that route, and keep you eyes out for another 22lr cylinder and have a convertible.

The 32 caliber conversions are a poor idea, first 32 caliber barrels are really hard to find, but worse you have a rim fire frame and unless you rework the firing pin and hammer it won't work on a center fire. What a pain.
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Old 06-21-2018, 07:37 AM
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Non-expert here, but is it possible to reline the chambers ?
In the past I have had a gunsmith to reline a worn out .22 rifle bore.
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Old 06-21-2018, 07:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zipdog View Post
For all you know the cylinder holes aren't even round. Take it to a good machinist not a gunsmith. A good machinist can tell you and they don't need a reamer to fix it if out of round. Reamers are for people who don't know how to do precision work. Your engines cylinders don't have reamed holes neither should your revolver unless you want a hack job by a so called gunsmith.
True that a machinist can tell you if they are out of round and how large they are. But, lots of precision holes have been made with reamers. Almost every chamber in the shooting world was made with a reamer, including precision bench rest high powered rifle chambers. If I wanted to make a .223 chamber into a 22-250 chamber I would use a reamer and so would every other gun smith from hack to guys of P O Ackely ability. Plus, every machinist I know has a bunch of reamers for making small precision holes.
The cylinders in my 408 Ford were not done with a reamer, they were done with a boring bar. Be a pretty flimsy boring bar to turn a hole with a .223 ID.

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Old 06-21-2018, 08:45 AM
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Non-expert here, but is it possible to reline the chambers ?
In the past I have had a gunsmith to reline a worn out .22 rifle bore.
I believe that would be possible, but if you paid to do it far more than the cost of a new cylinder. I have picked up a couple of top break 32s. I am going to try lining the cylinders, bores and reworking extractor for 22 lr rims and redoing the firing pin and bushing to make a top break 22lr, just for entertainment.

If reaming the current cylinder does not work, maybe he could remove the cylinder, sent it into S&W and have a new cylinder installed. If he could then he could make current cylinder into a 22 mag. A .224 bullet down a .22 barrel is a absolute non issue.
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Old 06-21-2018, 09:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruger 22 View Post
This is not an unusual thing. My son has a 63, and I have a 17-1 and after some shooting the empties get very sticky. I just run a brush and dry cloth through them after each 25-30 shots and the problem is much improved. I found that keeping the chambers dry makes a big difference.
Yup. Nature of the beast. My 34 came with a brush and a cleaning rod - and a demand that they be used!
Try different ammo. WW 100 pack ammo in the red plastic box works fine in mine. Everything else seems to require brushing as much as every other cylinder full.
To me, brushing has become part of the firing sequence.

I don't know if the tight cylinders contribute to accuracy, but that little J frame 22 can hold its own with just about any other 22 handgun I've ever shot.

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Old 06-21-2018, 09:56 AM
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Thanks to all who contributed to this thread. I have learned a lot.
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Old 06-21-2018, 09:58 AM
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S&W 22s are or were known for tight Min spec chambers. My M34 is like that but it hasn't been a problem.
Is the cylinder really clean? They tend to lead up quickly. A trick I learned years ago... is to wipe the entire gun, barrel, chambers with BreakFree CLP on a patch before firing. Leave just a film. The fouling will be on top of the film & clean off easily.
Many peole have used a standard chamber reamer to clean up the chambers which reportedly improves extraction. I'd certainly try this first.
Plated ammo may prove to be less troublesome.
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Old 06-21-2018, 10:16 AM
kudzu3 kudzu3 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by les.b View Post
Gee...I had no idea that the parts were so expensive. I see a cylinder on eBay going for $190.00...I'm not sure why kudzu thinks the magnum idea is bad. After all, that was one of the original options, and you could always try to find an extra 22 LR cylinder later, perhaps at a lower price. I might give that some consideration. 22 mag now, 22 LR later.

Best Regards, Les
As I said, I'm no expert. I was thinking of the expense. I've been through a similar situation, the estimates to repair were so expensive, I sold the gun cheap.
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Old 06-21-2018, 10:26 AM
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A set of "pin gauges" will erase many questions here about this cylinder.
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Old 06-21-2018, 10:49 AM
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I’m going to guess the chambers (at least one or two of them, which is all it would take) are lightly tapered from the front. this would allow the loaded round to drop in easily but the fired round would expand into the larger front portion and lock in the empty case. More reaming would probably not help until the whole length of the chamber got oversized. You can’t “ream it smaller.”

My vote goes to rechamber to 22 mag and look for a replacement in 22lr so you have two useful chamberings. Then again, it’s your money, so it’s your decision.

Froggie
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Old 06-21-2018, 11:02 AM
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Originally Posted by steelslaver View Post
I have picked up a couple of top break 32s. I am going to try lining the cylinders, bores and reworking extractor for 22 lr rims and redoing the firing pin and bushing to make a top break 22lr, just for entertainment.
Sounds like a fun project. I came across a .32 Hand Ejector that had this treatment in a pawn shop a few years ago. They were too proud of it for my wallet, but the work was well done and done many years ago.
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Old 06-21-2018, 11:10 AM
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"I have picked up a couple of top break 32s. I am going to try lining the cylinders, bores and reworking extractor for 22 lr rims and redoing the firing pin and bushing to make a top break 22lr, just for entertainment."

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Sounds like a fun project. I came across a .32 Hand Ejector that had this treatment in a pawn shop a few years ago. They were too proud of it for my wallet, but the work was well done and done many years ago.
I had a .32 S&W top break for a while. It was a fun gun to shoot, but the power level was so low that I was afraid that the bullet would bounce back when shooting at an aluminum can! I love one chambered in .22 Long Rifle. I haven't been able to find one cheap enough to convert.
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Old 06-21-2018, 11:13 AM
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Take your gun to a gunsmith and have your chambers measured and compared with SAAMI specs for .22 LR. You can’t make any sort of intelligent decision about what to do without first knowing what you have. The possibility of a slight “reverse taper” (i.e., larger diameter at the barrel-end of the chamber) would definitely affect extraction and that is also something to check. You can’t check for that with pin gages, unfortunately. It’s going to require careful measuring, since your chambers could also be a bit out of round.

My guess is that your chambers are tight or show a small reverse taper, not oversized. “Polishing” your chambers would have to be done by lapping, to preserve roundness. Fiddling around with attempts at polishing without considering roundness is liable to end up causing more trouble, not less.

Carefully touching up the chambers with a sharp .22 LR reamer sometimes fixes this problem. And sometimes it makes things worse, depending on how expertly it is done, and whether the reamer is up to the job. One that’s not sharp wont be. If you buy a reamer, don’t buy a “match” chambering reamer.
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Old 06-21-2018, 11:29 AM
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Wow, that's a nice one, and a really good price too! You can always send to me. I don't shoot 22 Magnum that much, so the sticky problem wouldn't bother me at all.
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Old 06-21-2018, 12:01 PM
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This thread sent me to the range this morning. I don't have a Mod 63, but do have a 650 with auxiliary LR cylinder. Happens to have the same part# as the 63 cylinder. My findings with MiniMags is binding after twelve rounds, CCI-SV after 18. However after 50 rounds of CCI Quiet, easy as pie.
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Old 06-21-2018, 02:33 PM
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I have had several md 34s rechambered into 22 mag. They shoot great & most will also shoot 22 lr as well. This may not be by the book, but after shooting them for years have had no problems.
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Old 06-21-2018, 02:34 PM
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If you get another 22 cylinder
I would be interested in your
Over sized one this would take the
sting out of the price but timing
Will have to be checked if you
replace it
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Old 06-21-2018, 10:43 PM
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I bought a 63 when the came out and still have it. It was super sticky. It used a drill with a swab coated in polish compound and cleaned the chambers. If I remember it was a fine valve grind compound. They are still a bit sticky but can deal with it.


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Old 06-23-2018, 11:16 AM
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In my experience of 50 plus years, oversize chambers do not a sticky chamber make.


Extracting with only one case sticking in a chamber can make it feel like all chambers are sticking!

First you need to diagnose the problem:

1. Check every chamber mouth for a ding or roll over burr in the edge of the chamber mouth.
2. Shoot a round in only one chamber at a time to determine which chamber or chambers are the problem.

If the chambers were honed or polished improperly the most common result is a chamber with a wallow in it or a wide spot or out of round spot. In other words the chamber wall is not straight. You'll never extract a case from a chamber with a spot that's wider than the mouth of the chamber! Because you're basically having to resize the case to extract it from the chamber.

And pin gauges will not detect that.

Once you find the problem chamber or chambers they should be reamed with a fresh reamer of full diameter. But if after reaming you can still see spots in the walls of the chamber that the reamer didn't touch, you may still have a sticking case.

At this point you have nothing to lose, so you can go to the final remedy.

Or I'd even skip the expense of the reaming step and go straight to honing.

You can try to find a hone for 22 or there's also the poor man's honing method. A wood dowel smaller than the chamber diameter, with a skinny slit in the end of it, the length of a 22 LR case. Place one end of a piece of 600 grit wet or dry paper in the slit and wrap it tightly around the dowel in the opposite direction that your Dremel or power drill spins, so it will just fit in the chamber.

As you spin it keep it straight! Move it in and out of the chamber slowly which will add just a slight taper to the mouth of the chamber. Again look for wallows or spots that are not being touched by the paper. Use 5 power glasses. Avoid honing the throat or front end of the chamber. You can give it another quick hone with 1000 grit paper. I can almost guarantee those bad chambers will no longer have sticking cases in them.
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Old 06-25-2018, 11:13 AM
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The issue with my 63 is not tight chambers but a tight barrel cylinder gap. After around 100 rounds the cylinder face gets dirty enough to bind.
Just the nature of the beast I guess. Doesn't bother me enough to do anything to the gun-like take a file to the rear face of the barrel
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Old 06-25-2018, 01:47 PM
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I'll solve your problem the easy way. Just dump the gun in My trash bin.
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Old 06-25-2018, 03:58 PM
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I ordered up a .22 WMR reamer from 4D in Kalispell. 34 bucks plus shipping for a week. I’ll update this thread with my progress, or lack thereof.
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Old 06-25-2018, 08:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 350mag View Post
I bought a 63 when the came out and still have it. It was super sticky. It used a drill with a swab coated in polish compound and cleaned the chambers. If I remember it was a fine valve grind compound. They are still a bit sticky but can deal with it.


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I have an old High Standard Double 9 that has slightly sticky chambers and I was thinking of trying this exact thing. I bought a 3-pack of bore mops and now I need to get the valve lapping compound. Glad to hear that someone else tried it and that it helped.
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Old 06-25-2018, 08:28 PM
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Oh boy. Now you've done it. Got me started on .22 revolvers...

Ok, here's the deal: In my humble experience - virtually all .22 revolvers have this problem.

Root cause of problem is friction. Solution = reduce the friction. That is; try loading just one round. It'll probably extract fine. Then try 2, 3, etc. until it gets 'sticky'.

You'll have a 4 shooter instead of 6 shooter or something like that, but it won't bind.

You can test this in any .22 revolver. If you want a guaranteed 'sticky' one, try an 8 or 10 shooter. They bind every time!

Then, if you're me anyway, you'll sell your .22 revolvers and go back to Ruger MkII's.
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Old 06-25-2018, 08:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BC38 View Post
I have an old High Standard Double 9 that has slightly sticky chambers and I was thinking of trying this exact thing. I bought a 3-pack of bore mops and now I need to get the valve lapping compound. Glad to hear that someone else tried it and that it helped.
This can work just fine. But with a soft backing like a mop and valve grinding compound can spread unevenly. Not saying they always will, just that this is how wallows can be be formed.

If you use that method move the mop in and out of the chambers while spinning it to minimize heavier polishing in one area of the chamber.
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Old 06-25-2018, 08:52 PM
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Converting it to .22WMR would be my first choice as it's a greatly underrated round that is still far less expensive than centerfire ammo. I had a Model 63 that I loved. One day the apartment maintenance guys came in and walked off with it for some drug hits. They were fired and I never got my guns back. I ended up getting a Rossi M511 revolver that's the "poor man's" Model 63 and it works just as well as my lost 63, is just as accurate as my 63, but it's not my 63. So I'd ream that cylinder for the .22 WMR and go with it. Then if you want a .22LR, find a Rossi made in the 80s.

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Old 06-25-2018, 09:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hondo44 View Post
This can work just fine. But with a soft backing like a mop and valve grinding compound can spread unevenly. Not saying they always will, just that this is how wallows can be be formed.

If you use that method move the mop in and out of the chambers while spinning it to minimize heavier polishing in one area of the chamber.
Exactly what I had planned. Thanks for the additional confirmation.
I was also thinking of trying the split-dowel and sandpaper idea with some 1000 grit wet-or-dry.
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Old 06-26-2018, 05:00 AM
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My 10 round 617-6 was sticky, and after the chamber reaming with the standard finishing reamer, it has no problems. I can shoot a couple hundred rounds with no extraction problems. This is like the 7th or 8th 22 I have done this to and all work just great.
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Old 06-26-2018, 08:44 AM
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Please don't let BUBBA work on it!

Have a blessed day,

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Old 06-26-2018, 10:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ruger 22 View Post
This is not an unusual thing. My son has a 63, and I have a 17-1 and after some shooting the empties get very sticky. I just run a brush and dry cloth through them after each 25-30 shots and the problem is much improved. I found that keeping the chambers dry makes a big difference.
To the best of my recollection I have owned 8 S&W .22 revolvers over the past 45 years or so. Every single one of them had sticky extraction, a couple after only one cylinder-full, the rest after no more than 2-3 cylinder-fulls. The dry-brush-as-needed expedient eventually cures the problem without doing any honing of chambers.
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Old 06-26-2018, 08:53 PM
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My M-34 was terribly sticky. I sold it. I never bought another .22 revolver. I use a Ruger MK II auto in that role, or use a M-60-4 .38 as a small trail gun.

I feel much better with the added power of the .38, anyway.
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Old 06-26-2018, 09:49 PM
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I had a blue M34 for a number of years. Extraction was OK; my problem was DA firing was iffy. I usually had at least one misfire in two cylinder fulls. SA was fine. I cleaned the chambers, the recesses for the case heads, I went to a heavier main springer. I never did get reliable DA ignition.
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Old 06-26-2018, 09:50 PM
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Just for info sake, and I have not tried this with my model 63, but I have a browning buckmark that will not chamber or extract brass 22 cases but works flawlessly with nickel plated cases. And yes, my 63 suffers from sticky extraction....but I am going to try nickel cases next time.
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Old 06-26-2018, 10:35 PM
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For those who shy away from reaming the chambers, like me, I took the plunge and reamed 6 of my K22's and kit guns. If you can unscrew the forward side plate screw and remove the cylinder, it is a piece of cake. The worst part is cleaning the heavy oil out when you're thru. All you need is a vice and piece of leather to hold the cylinder, a chamber finishing reamer with a T bar attached, and cutting oil. Turn the reamer clockwise and never reverse the direction. Clean the reamer after each chamber, and more often if you are removing a lot of metal. There is a shoulder on the reamer to let you know when you're done. It will start turning freely. Clean the cylinder as you normally would and reinstall.
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Old 06-26-2018, 11:05 PM
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Quote:
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For those who shy away from reaming the chambers, like me, I took the plunge and reamed 6 of my K22's and kit guns. If you can unscrew the forward side plate screw and remove the cylinder, it is a piece of cake. The worst part is cleaning the heavy oil out when you're thru. All you need is a vice and piece of leather to hold the cylinder, a chamber finishing reamer with a T bar attached, and cutting oil. Turn the reamer clockwise and never reverse the direction. Clean the reamer after each chamber, and more often if you are removing a lot of metal. There is a shoulder on the reamer to let you know when you're done. It will start turning freely. Clean the cylinder as you normally would and reinstall.
Speaking for myself only, I have no hesitancy about using a reamer. The issue is getting one.

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Old 06-27-2018, 04:58 PM
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Some months ago i went in these threads, and I saved the links.
Interesting, to me.
1960 K22 chamber diameter vs. SAAMI sporting specs

and

Finish reaming K22s, or, How To Solve Difficult Extraction In .22lr S&Ws
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Old 06-27-2018, 05:20 PM
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That's some good dope for anyone thinking about doing this operation!! Thanks for sharing the links,

Best Regards, Les
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