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


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  #1  
Old 10-03-2020, 06:51 PM
mikemyers mikemyers is offline
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Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning? Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning? Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning? Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning? Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning?  
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Default Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning?

Since the late 1970's, I was taught, and from then on I always cleaned, my revolvers (S&W Models 29, 14, 17, and 19) by first removing the cylinder. I now have a 1980 Python to go along with my revolvers, but in the Python forum, it was suggested that the revolver be cleaned without removing the cylinder.

It's so easy to do, and seems to make the cleaning job all that much easier, that I don't understand any reluctance to removing the cylinder as one of the first steps.

So, I'm asking the question here - do you guys and gals clean your revolvers with the cylinder in place, or detached from the gun? ......and why?

Last edited by mikemyers; 10-03-2020 at 06:53 PM.
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Old 10-03-2020, 07:02 PM
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ALWAYS take it off,,, I would ask, why not ?
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Old 10-03-2020, 07:04 PM
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If I have fired just a couple cylinder's full, I don't take it off. For a full cleaning I do remove it.
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Old 10-03-2020, 07:18 PM
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Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning? Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning? Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning? Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning? Remove S&W Revolver Cylinder for Cleaning?  
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Leave it on. Easy enough to
clean without removing it.

Perhaps if cylinder feels sluggish
or once a year, then remove it.

A drop or so of Rem Oil around the
bushing once in a while doesn't
hurt.

But if removing it makes you happy
by all means do so. Just don't over
lube or oil before reassembling.
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Old 10-03-2020, 07:20 PM
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I remove the cylinder for cleaning. Sometimes the side plate and internals.
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Old 10-04-2020, 12:22 AM
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I like a clean gun and this is pretty standard cleaning for me.

All I'm missing is my cup of coffee.










They're just soo much nicer when they're clean.
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Old 10-04-2020, 12:51 AM
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For Pythons, all other Colts and S&Ws, I remove the cylinder for cleaning.
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Old 10-04-2020, 06:23 AM
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along with the cylinder I also remove the stocks
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Old 10-04-2020, 09:09 AM
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When cleaning any revolver after a shooting session, I remove the cylinder. I clean and lubricate the yoke as there seems to be carbon fouling buildup there. I don't believe that you need to do this each time. Before doing this many years ago, I occasionally experienced a slight drag on cylinder rotation. I believe that this was due in part to carbon/grit and/or lack of lubrication. After I started with this cleaning regimen I no longer had this problem.

My only caution to you is to be certain to use the correct size screwdriver to remove the side plate screw retaining the yoke.

HTH.

JPJ.
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Old 10-04-2020, 09:38 AM
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When the cylinder doesn't revolve very freely, there is obviously a lack of lubricant (or maybe gummy lubricant) and perhaps some grime that needs removal. I remove the cylinder at that point and give everything the needed attention. Virtually all of my revolvers have seen a good bit of firing and all are far from new; most I've had more than thirty years.

I've never thought to take note of how often I remove a cylinder for cleaning, but would guess about every two-three years, certainly not any more often than that.
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Old 10-04-2020, 09:43 AM
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I see no reason to bugger up any screws and remove the cylinder on routine cleanings. Spray lubes and compressed air are my friends.
Yes, I have a complete set of S&W screwdrivers but bad s**t happens.
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Old 10-04-2020, 09:54 AM
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I always remove the cylinder before cleaning. Not only is it easier to clean, but it also puts no strain on the yoke (crane). If it's mishandled in closing the cylinder (flipped shut rather than pressed in) the misalignment can cause real problems. Same principle applies here. Take it out carefully.

John
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Old 10-04-2020, 09:59 AM
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I always take the cylinder out. Makes it easier to clean the burn marks off the front of the cylinder.
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Old 10-04-2020, 10:03 AM
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There's gonna be a lot of opinions on this one! First off, I'm not obsessive about cleaning a gun each and every time I fire it. GASP! Certainly I understand those who do clean each time. For those in the service to our country, Uncle Sam settles for nothing less.

For a "light cleaning" I leave the cylinder in place. I always remove the stocks. Leaving the cylinder in place is a little awkward, though. A thorough cleaning means removing and disassembling the cylinder. Once in a blue moon, I pop the sideplate and clean/relube the guts.

Call me crazy, or another name of your choosing. It works for me. Removing the sideplate isn't that big of a deal as many might have you believe. Just use the right tools and technique. And cleaning after every firing isn't (IMNHO) needed.
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Old 10-04-2020, 12:55 PM
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Forty-odd years of shooting S&W revolvers and I've never once removed the cylinder on any of 'em for cleaning.

They are carefully cleaned and oiled after shooting, and continue to function perfectly.
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Old 10-04-2020, 01:55 PM
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I always remove the cylinder.
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Old 10-04-2020, 02:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mod29 View Post
Forty-odd years of shooting S&W revolvers and I've never once removed the cylinder on any of 'em for cleaning.

They are carefully cleaned and oiled after shooting, and continue to function perfectly.
Been shooting revolvers over 50 yrs & have never removed the cylinder, likely b/c Iím not mechanically inclined and fear something going awry, but they all still run perfectly.
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Old 10-04-2020, 03:10 PM
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Python owners (or wannabes) are so obsessive about the finish of their guns that whomever told you to not remove the cylinder was probably afraid of buggering up the screw or (gasp!) scratching the precious....

I'm surprised that some even shoot their Pythons, particularly the status seeking newbies. FWIW, my first centerfire handgun was a Python (second was a 4" 66) and I've owned 4 or 5 others. Shot that first one quite a bit, wish I still had it (but that's another story).

Python forum? LOL

Clean your guns the way you're used to doing it, it'll be fine.
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Old 10-04-2020, 03:13 PM
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I almost never remove the cylinder. Ok, you got me. I never remove the cylinder.
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Old 10-04-2020, 03:38 PM
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Iím a bit of a slob when it comes to cleaning guns.

Back in my high school rifle team days, I got in huge trouble for cleaning my Winchester 52C during the season: Sargent Shaw made me do pushups before each daily practice for weeks!

He wanted to impress on me how undesirable and unnecessary it was to clean a well seasoned barrel in the middle of the competitive season.

In the ensuing 55+ years, Iíve followed Sgt. Shawís Ďadviceí and resisted the impulse to muck about with guns that are working well.

Iíve routinely run 500+ rounds through my 1911ís between cleaning; I wipe my shotguns down after use during the season and take care of the finish and grease the hinge pin (I use Parker guns) but only clean them at the end of the season, and I wipe my edc daily with a lightly oiled rag.

I donít disassemble revolvers to clean them.
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Old 10-04-2020, 05:15 PM
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The stocks, side plate and cylinder are removed whether I shoot one cylinder or twenty. I bought a "vise smith" but I haven't used it yet.

Everything is cleaned and lubricated then reassembled.
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Old 10-04-2020, 07:11 PM
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I like to keep my car clean too. I don't just wash the windows.
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Old 10-04-2020, 07:24 PM
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I always remove the cylinder. Way easier to clean it when it's out.
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Old 10-04-2020, 07:47 PM
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My schedule is never that full that I donít have the time to remove the cylinder for a proper cleaning.
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Old 10-04-2020, 07:53 PM
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Another one who ALWAYS removes the cylinder. For me it’s faster and makes it easier to thoroughly clean. Or perhaps it’s the way I was taught.
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Old 10-04-2020, 07:57 PM
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You guys inspired me and it looks so easy to remove. Will remove them all when cleaning a used revolver after purchase from now on.
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Old 10-04-2020, 08:14 PM
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When I was young my dad impressed upon me to clean-up after myself. That also went for cleaning guns after we shot them. When I shoot mt gun I clean then afterwards. That includes removing the stocks and the cylinder. I inspect, clean, lube and back in the safe. Why? Why not?
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Old 10-09-2020, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjmIII_Ruger View Post
You guys inspired me and it looks so easy to remove. Will remove them all when cleaning a used revolver after purchase from now on.
How to remove cylinder from a Smith and Wesson Revolver - YouTube
Please invest in a proper set of screwdrivers before removing any screws from any firearm. I will never consider purchasing any firearm that has buggered up screws even though the seller had reduced the selling price substantially to compensate for that fact.
BROWNELLS S&W SCREWDRIVER | Brownells
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Old 10-09-2020, 10:50 AM
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Exclamation Cylinder Cleaning

You can carefully clean the Cylinder and the rest of the Revolver,
by leaving Cylinder on.

Taking the Screw, Yoke, Cylinder off every time is just a lot of
wear and tear on those Components.

Unless you are shooting hundreds of rounds and the powder is
really dirty, I would just carefully clean.

When I go to the Range, I have several Revolvers with me. I am
very conservative, and will probably shoot two Cylinders from
each Revolver.

When I get home, I just carefully wipe the powder residue off
with a Make Up removal Cotton Round and full Synthetic Oil. I
also make sure the Cylinder spins freely.

Now when the Cylinder starts to turn sluggishly then I take the
Yoke/Cylinder off and clean.

To each their own, the Best to you and your endeavors.
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Old 10-09-2020, 11:28 AM
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Somtimes I do. Sometimes I don’t. But I always run a brush with Ballistol through the barrel and cylinders, and do a good wipe down with same, before I leave the range.
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Old 10-09-2020, 11:53 AM
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Itís good to disassemble, clean, lube often. I lube all the metal to metal contact parts with moly. Oil is for the bores.
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Old 10-09-2020, 12:16 PM
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Slotted screw heads are not intended for frequent use no matter how well the screwdriver tip fits. That said, there is little choice but to carefully remove the forward sideplate screw to fully get at the cylinder, crane and center pin. Manhandling the cylinder over the frame cylinder stops mars the cylinder O.D. If I disassemble the cylinder I'm careful to place it between the stops and insert the yoke. It doesn't matter much, but if done frequently the gun will get counterproductively marred. Samuel Colt was way ahead of S&W with his spring loaded cylinder pin latch. If I was crazy serious about frequent disassembly and cleaning I would figure out how to substitute a socket head capscrew for the forward lockplate screw. Sooner or later that slotted screwdriver will slip and make a mess.
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Old 10-09-2020, 12:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gnystrom View Post
Please invest in a proper set of screwdrivers...
Great advice! I already have a full set of gunsmith screwdrivers and it's amazing how tight they fit the screwhead compared to an automotive screwdriver.
I also have factory S&W replacement screws! Their only a dollar or two each at MidwayUSA. They are a great filler item if you're just shy of free shipping too!
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Old 10-09-2020, 06:47 PM
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I'm obviously not qualified to be a member of the collectors association. I use my guns. Yeah, I have way more than I need but Oh Well! If a screw shows some evidence of being used, then it obviously got used. So what! Go to the range and shoot a couple of cylinders out of several guns??? Not likely. If I go to the range I'm going to send some lead down range, unless I'm just doing a function test on something. I guess I still suffer from a old used cops attitude that a gun is a tool to be used. It's also why I'll never get big bucks for any of mine on gun brokers. It's also why I'll never buy one of those expensive guns on gun brokers, because I'll shoot the you know what out of it. Yeah, I generally remove the cylinder for cleaning. An yeah, after qualifications or a training session, having fired 160 rounds minimum, I've been known to use a leatherman when necessary if no decent screwdriver was about, and then stuff it back in my holster and jump back in the patrol car, likely banging it on the door jam in the process.

I guess I should resign from the forum after that.
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Old 10-09-2020, 08:05 PM
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Hickock45 doesn't.
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Old 10-09-2020, 09:04 PM
Seamus O'Caiside Seamus O'Caiside is offline
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Some shooters damage their guns by a neglectful lack of cleaning.
Some shooters damage their guns by obsessive over-cleaning.

One is as bad as the other.
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Old 10-09-2020, 11:20 PM
rck281 rck281 is offline
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How do you guys clean the burn marks from the front of the cylinder.
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Old 10-10-2020, 12:14 AM
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Please invest in a proper set of screwdrivers before removing any screws from any firearm. I will never consider purchasing any firearm that has buggered up screws even though the seller had reduced the selling price substantially to compensate for that fact.
BROWNELLS S&W SCREWDRIVER | Brownells


I use this Husky screwdriver. It fits perfect.
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Old 10-10-2020, 01:28 AM
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How do you guys clean the burn marks from the front of the cylinder.
IF itís stainless, thisíll do the trick. Iíve put countless thousands of rounds thru this 66-1 and Iím at least the third owner.
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Old 10-10-2020, 09:12 AM
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IF itís stainless, thisíll do the trick. Iíve put countless thousands of rounds thru this 66-1 and Iím at least the third owner.




Ditto on the Birchwood/Casey lead remover and polishing cloth.

This was my brother's 66-1 that was his duty revolver for 10 years. He LOVED shooting .357s.
I can't even imaging how many rounds have gone thru this gun.

I am the second owner and I have only put a few hundred thru it myself.
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Old 10-10-2020, 10:01 PM
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I use this Husky screwdriver. It fits perfect.
But these fit correctly,.
What is the Difference Between Gunsmith and Regular Screwdrivers? - YouTube
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Old 10-10-2020, 10:02 PM
gnystrom gnystrom is offline
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I use this Husky screwdriver. It fits perfect.
But these fit correctly,.
What is the Difference Between Gunsmith and Regular Screwdrivers? - YouTube
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  #43  
Old 10-10-2020, 10:30 PM
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I've never buggered a screw.

Not only is the screw driver blade important but so is the person using it.
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Old 10-12-2020, 06:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mod29 View Post
Forty-odd years of shooting S&W revolvers and I've never once removed the cylinder on any of 'em for cleaning.

They are carefully cleaned and oiled after shooting, and continue to function perfectly.
Yep. Me either in 40 something years. But, it's their guns.

John
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