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S&W Revolvers: 1980 to the Present All NON-PINNED Barrels, the L-Frames, and the New Era Revolvers


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Old 06-30-2011, 09:57 PM
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Default 22mag airweight 351pd

today I saw a 7 shot 22mag airweight I think its a 351pd .it was a snubby and light as a feather.had a red hiviz front sight.and rosewood grips .I liked that thing.but man they wanted $689 for it.anyone have one how do they shoot?
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Old 06-30-2011, 11:10 PM
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I have a 351PD, and have fired it a lot. First thing, as they come from the factory, they have a very heavy DA trigger pull. I replaced the factory hammer spring with a new factory spring from a 38 spl "J" frame, which together with a lighter trigger return spring, helped the DA pull quite a bit. I also installed a C&S extended length firing pin. Do not dry fire the revolver with the C&S firing pin, as it will hit the chamber mouth. It still is heavier than my model 637, which has had the action worked over for a lighter and smoother DA pull. I tried a Wolf reduced pull mainspring, but it was not heavy enough for reliable DA fire.
I have had the best luck with CCI ammo, both for reliability and accuracy, I use either the 40gr HP (CCI # 0024) or the 40 gr SP (CCI # 0022). I have not been able to get any of the Hornaday Critical Defense 22 mag's to try yet. You will need to brush the cylinder chambers about every box of shells, as they get dirty and make the rounds hard to seat in the cylinder.
Mine is pretty loud, but is easy to carry, shoots very accurate for a 2" barrel, and has a lot more punch than a 22lr.
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Old 07-01-2011, 01:51 AM
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Originally Posted by retired2006 View Post
I have a 351PD, and have fired it a lot. < snip > . . . and has a lot more punch than a 22lr.
I'm just wondering if you've run yours over a chronograph? I've read that 22 Mag ammo is all designed for rifle length barrels, and doesn't really deliver the same improvement over 22LR in pistols as it does in rifles. I'm just curious if that's really so, especially in a very short barrel.
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Old 07-01-2011, 06:15 AM
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I had a 4.6" commemorative Ruger Single Six over six years ago and chrono-ed the following through it - from the appropriate cylinders:

.22 LR Federal GameShok 1,023 +/- 20 fps

.22 WMR Remingto HP 1,470 +/- 39 fps

The WMR's had the familiar supersonic 'crack' - which they should still have from the 2" 351PD, just a bit slower. Mas Ayoob, I believe, has said the 351PD is a decent back-up gun. Don't expect a good trigger - rimfire primers require more oomph - and the lite weight seems to enhance the heavy pull 'feel'. Be careful with hammer spring changes - make sure it still goes bang reliably! And - no S&W rimfire, J or K frame alike, should ever be dry-fired without snapcaps or spent cases in every chamber.

Stainz

PS Include centerfire type caliber revolvers in that 'don't fire without snapcaps/spent case' caution if the OEM FP was replaced with an extended reach (longer notch) FP - the repeated flattening of the FP return spring will eventually break that spring.
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Old 07-01-2011, 09:29 AM
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I have a 351PD and the trigger will smooth out somewhat over time. Mine is not bad but yes the very light weight in a rimfire lock work tends to be a bit heavy in DA. Its a handy little pocket gun but mostly best used for up close target distances.
I did chrono mine (through my cheapie chrono) and I get on average a range of 1050-1060 FPS with both 40 grain CCI Game Points and 40 gr. Winchester FMJ. The Winchesters shoot best out of this gun and chrono more consistently. Your results may vary.
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Old 07-01-2011, 09:51 AM
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thank you all for the info.so is the price at that lgs about the norm?
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Old 07-01-2011, 11:21 AM
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$689 seems too high to me. For comparison purposes you may want to check out Gunbroker.com for 351PD prices. Its a current model and should be readily available in most gun shops.
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Old 07-01-2011, 11:54 AM
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I've had one for several years now. Its a pretty good little pocket gun. When my youngest wanted to take his CCW course, he asked to borrow something reliable (he likes semi-autos). So I selected it for him to use.

He didn't like the laser sight, so I took them off. But then when he came back to give it to me, he said the instructor and everyone else taking the course liked it. The instructor told him it was a very nice little gun. Of course it was, that's why I bought it.

Twice since then he's come back to borrow it. The most recent was when his wife and another couple wanted to go shooting. The other couple just to see what guns were all about. And of course all of them liked it. And each return trip to me it was left dirty.... But its OK I guess, I'd rather clean it than to have them maybe damage the paint job finish.

And I'm kind of on the hook here for a couple of expensive guns. About 5 years ago both the DILs were pregnant, and there was a rash of people stealing babies (we discussed it back then) out of the women's stomach! Yuck, but scary to pregnant mothers to be. So I stuck my foot in my mouth. It told them if any of them take the time and effort to get a CCW, I'd pay for it. And when they got it, I'd pay for a suitable CCW gun. (one I felt was suitable, not a glock.) Of course anyone would figure out I'd end up buying each a top dollar scandium Smith. Sons aren't stupid, they both immediately went about getting their licenses. They were cheap, with one wanting a 637, the other wanted my historic M60. Fine. DILs will want to go shopping and buy what catches their eye. But its been a long time now, and neither has bothered. But they all like the 351, and for good reason.

If you're at all recoil sensitive, its a winner. And don't believe the weight numbers the factory or anyone else publishes. They take the empty gun and plunk it down on a scale. Weigh it with ammo included (if you're squeamish about weighing a loaded gun just drop the ammo along side.) When you do that, the 7 rimfire rounds weigh a lot less than the 5 centerfire 38s or 357s.
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:03 PM
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I know that last one I saw was price close to that but a little lower. I went into severe sticker shock when I saw it and let it go. Someone thought it was fair though since it walked a week later when I went back again. I know there are supposed to be modern loads that do well in revolvers or at least better than the older slow burners that were made for rifles. But would be happy with Stingers if they worked better from the 617's. But chrono tests posted here have shown they only get into 800 fps or so from the short barrel. If someone makes a WMR that scoots out at 1,400 fps from a two inch barrel then I'll eat my hat... Not calling liar, just super hard to believe... But we do have some crazy new exotic powders going into fancy ammo these days. I'm still trying to figure out that new Hornady Superformance stuff that is safe for autoloaders and is scooting pretty fast...
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Old 07-01-2011, 04:29 PM
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22 mag ammo is pretty high priced these days, so I don't anticipate any of the big makers doing us any favors. But they probably could build some rounds that would be optimized in short revolvers. We do that handloading all the time, I just don't know how we'd do it with rimfires.

Ok, really I do know. We'd pull the bullets hoping we don't set one off, then use Bullseye, the fastest powder we can get, and try to somehow drill the hollow point to shave a few grains off it.

What we really need is an ammo maker like SuperVel to start up and make us some scorching 22 mag loads. The ones every one screams had hides the women and children when they hear about them. Maybe they need to replace the powder with C4!
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Old 07-01-2011, 04:52 PM
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Just looked, the 351PD is $611 online - but the pic doesn't show wood grips. You could call and ask.

On that note;

Does anybody know why the aluminum 317, 351 type .22 and .22 mag's cost $600 plus when the aluminum 442, 642 etc are under $400? Seems like they should cost about the same to me.
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Old 07-02-2011, 08:30 AM
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The current 351PD, SKU# 160228 & M$RP $759, has the rosewood grip - and is the same price as the 3" 317K - actually, $10 less than my new 3" 63! Yep, the 642 is a lot cheaper - M$RP $449. Of course, they make a few more of them - and it is a 'loss-leader' - and their best selling firearm. The 351PD is scarce. I saw a $375 used, NB, 351PD at a local shop - thought about it for a day - it was long gone. I agree, $630-$690 is a lot - but it's really a lot of revolver... may be my next revolver purchase (For my wife, of course!).

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Old 07-02-2011, 10:51 AM
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As a followup to my original post, I emailed CCI about 22 mag loads, and rec'd this reply:
"Check out our new Speer 22 WMR rimfire load designed for 'short barrels' on Speer Ammo - Home Part # 954 This new load was developed specifically for your application. Linda"

This load and the Hornday Critical Defense 22 mag gives us two excellent choices for carry ammo. I have not been able to locate either round to try however. I plan to run some chono tests as soon as I can come across some of the "short barrel" loads.
In past tests out of a 6" M48, I averaged the following:
Fiocchi 40 JHP 1557fps
Super X 40 JHP 1421
CCI 40JHP 1489
The same day I also tested 22lr out of a M17 6", with the following averages:
Rem 37gr HP 1070fps
Fed 37 HP 1059fps
Super X 40 gr 1027fps
CCI Velocitor 40gr 1110fps
Rem Yellow Jacket 33gr 1229fps
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Old 07-02-2011, 02:14 PM
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the federal and cci tnt 22 magnum round has shown good expansion out of a short barrel in a few tests.
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Old 05-31-2021, 10:06 PM
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I joined the S&W Forum today
Just traded for a NIB 351PD today and was concerned about dry-firing.
Will be purchasing the SnapCaps or use spent cases in every chamber as suggested.
Thanks for all the information.
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Old 06-02-2021, 09:02 AM
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I carry a 351c which is the centennial version with XS sights as my back up at work. With Speer Gold Dot its out performing many 380 loads and is similar to some 38 spl. ballistics. its a great gun.
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Old 06-04-2021, 04:32 PM
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I agree with you Collin, I carry mine daily as a back with tSpeer Gold Dots, itís a great gun.
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Old 06-04-2021, 05:03 PM
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Mine gets carried in my jammies when I take rover out to do his business. We are in a wooded rural area where snakes, possums, coyotes and who knows what might be roaming around in the yard. I'm very happy with it's weight and capacity.

Just put some Crimson Trace laser grips on it, but haven't put it on paper with them yet. Expensive little feller, but it's perfect for my needs. It sometimes rides with me in an IWB Sticky Holster. Can't tell it's there after a few minutes.

Glad this 10 year old thread came back alive. Welcome aboard erix62047!
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Old 06-04-2021, 09:58 PM
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I've posted many times here about my 351PD. It is a neat little revolver and you can shoot it all day long. Accuracy is best at closer ranges and my gun is quirky with respect to accuracy beyond that.

Aside from that, cleaning the front of the cylinder is virtualy impossible. I use high velocity .22 mag rounds and they leave sort of a golden finish around the front which I've yet to manage to remove, so I have left it alone. There is no build-up, but it's there. Mine came with an S&W .22 caliber cleaning kit which I like. Weight is next to nothing. I would carry it with some caution, even though I've heard (here) that ballistics rival the .380 acp.
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Old 06-05-2021, 11:34 AM
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My wife carries one. She started with a model 36, then a 60. Finally a 637 strictly for weight reduction. But after thumb surgery recoil became a problem for her.
I’ve tried several brands of ammunition. They all seem to work fine.
She carries it loaded with the Hornady CD ammo.
The range I belong to has plate racks. They consist of 6 inch plates at 10 yards. She has no problem knocking them over.
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Old 06-06-2021, 07:21 PM
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I have the 351C, the hammerless version with the Big Dot front sight. I paid $689.99 in 2013 for mine. It shipped with a bare metal cylinder face with visible machine marks. So maybe they had to true it up on final inspection? I dunno, but the cylinder gap is fine on all chambers and I've never had a hiccup of any sort, not even sticky extraction. I've always used Speer Gold Dots in this revolver and it performs well, reliable and accurate.

The trigger is heavy, but this also makes it very safe for carry. It's a short-distance gun but I've made some decent longer hits with it. My little 351C managed to bust a roly-poly target that wasn't meant to come apart. The folks banging it with 9mm all day were pretty impressed. Maybe they just softened it up for me.
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Old 06-06-2021, 08:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lobster Picnic View Post
I have the 351C, the hammerless version with the Big Dot front sight. I paid $689.99 in 2013 for mine. It shipped with a bare metal cylinder face with visible machine marks. So maybe they had to true it up on final inspection? I dunno, but the cylinder gap is fine on all chambers and I've never had a hiccup of any sort, not even sticky extraction. I've always used Speer Gold Dots in this revolver and it performs well, reliable and accurate.

The trigger is heavy, but this also makes it very safe for carry. It's a short-distance gun but I've made some decent longer hits with it. My little 351C managed to bust a roly-poly target that wasn't meant to come apart. The folks banging it with 9mm all day were pretty impressed. Maybe they just softened it up for me.
I also have a 351C......great little gun and very fun to shoot
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Old 06-06-2021, 08:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sw44spl View Post
today I saw a 7 shot 22mag airweight I think its a 351pd .it was a snubby and light as a feather.had a red hiviz front sight.and rosewood grips .I liked that thing.but man they wanted $689 for it.anyone have one how do they shoot?
That is about the price that is asked around here and they sell rather quickly. I was lucky as a friend of mine thought I needed one and gave me one. I had sold my 342 as I have arthritis in my hand. He thought that I needed another ultralight revolver to carry.
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Old 06-06-2021, 09:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wrangler5 View Post
I'm just wondering if you've run yours over a chronograph? I've read that 22 Mag ammo is all designed for rifle length barrels, and doesn't really deliver the same improvement over 22LR in pistols as it does in rifles. I'm just curious if that's really so, especially in a very short barrel.

I think you would find as a general rule that you get 22LR rifle performance from a 22 mag in a revolver, my model 51 is nothing to sneeze at, a big improvement over the 22lr, imho.
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Old 06-16-2021, 02:04 AM
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I had kind of forgot that I picked this one up a couple years ago used for 375. Got it for carrying in the yard loaded first with a few rounds of shot shells. But after shooting it decided I liked the 38 shot shells better. Still liked the gun and it made a nice set. So couldnt sell it.
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