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Old 07-17-2011, 03:32 PM
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Default I want to have my 6" 686 shortened

I have 2 pre lock 6" 686's both guns are from the early 80's . One was mine and the other my dads. I have always wanted to turn mine into a 2 1/2'' gun for carry .

Is this just a matter of buying a shorter barrel or does the 6'' barrel need to be cut down? Are there any gunsmiths on the forum who do this work ?
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Old 07-17-2011, 04:54 PM
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SDM shortens barrels to 4" and install new sights for $250.
Here's a picture of the process:
4 conversion

SDM SW

I don't know what they would charge to shorten it to 3", or even if they would do it, since they are set up for 4".

However, cutting it to 2 1/2 is a whole different problem.
Suggest you make a close comparison of your gun and a 2 1/2 in 686. Note the ejector rods. Short ejector rods with .357 cause ejection problems.

Although anything is possible, the conversion to 2 1/2 in barrel with new parts probably costs as much as buying a used revolver in the configuration you want. And afer the conversion, the value of the gun would be less. Personally, 3" is as short as I would consider to shoot .357s.
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Old 07-17-2011, 07:48 PM
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Thought since I now have 2 identical guns it would be perfect to have the one shortened for a nice carry gun but I may just look for a 2 1/2'' gun.
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Old 07-17-2011, 08:09 PM
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Send it to S&W and have them install a 2 1/2" or 3" barrel. You'll get a bonus in that they'll install the newer barrel with pinned front sight you can change.
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Old 07-17-2011, 08:30 PM
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I just sent S&W an email asking about the 2 1/2'' barrel

Last edited by Mike 44; 07-17-2011 at 08:43 PM.
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Old 07-17-2011, 09:30 PM
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The money issue might be a toss up. Existing 2 1/2" 686s seem to have a premium when you find them in the on-line auctions. But I doubt it would be as much as sending it to Smith to change out the barrel. The new barrel is about $140 + or - in addition to postage and labor. They'll charge you for the shorter ejector rod too. Of course you can sell the original barrel to recoup some of the money outlay.
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Old 07-19-2011, 11:02 PM
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I got a response from S&W today and I am definitely going to go this route. Here is what they said .

Sir

We can replace your barrel. The price of the barrel is $129.93 labor is $65.00 return shipping is

$14.00. You would ship it to: SAWREP

2100 Roosevelt Ave.

Springfield, Ma. 01104 Ship it UPS or FedEx.
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Old 07-20-2011, 12:07 AM
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Plus they'll send your original barrel back with the gun.
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Old 07-20-2011, 12:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike 44 View Post
I got a response from S&W today and I am definitely going to go this route. Here is what they said .

Sir

We can replace your barrel. The price of the barrel is $129.93 labor is $65.00 return shipping is

$14.00. You would ship it to: SAWREP

2100 Roosevelt Ave.

Springfield, Ma. 01104 Ship it UPS or FedEx.

Thanks for sharing that. When you get the gun back, let us know what new stampings that you find on the gun, i.e., date stamp under the left grip, star in front of the serial number on the butt, or whatever.
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Old 07-20-2011, 12:31 AM
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Go for a 3" barrel if they have them:

I love my 3" CS-1. You also get to keep the full length ejector.
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Old 07-20-2011, 02:42 AM
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I was going to second the 3", no change of ejector rod,and you will have positive shell ejection. Not so with a 2 1/2".Not to mention cool. Was one on GB for sale the other day. Either way good luck. Bob
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Old 07-20-2011, 09:05 PM
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WOW The 3'' looks great !,Thanks for that photo Clang . I didnt know about the ejector issue either , thats cool then its a simple barrel swap and its done and I get my old barrel back to sell if I want .
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Old 07-20-2011, 09:35 PM
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Let me chime in by casting my vote for the 3" barrel. The ejection issue with the 2.5" short ejector rod can be a pain.
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Old 07-20-2011, 10:31 PM
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ok let me add this to the equation. I have 2 686's one I inherited from my dad last year. After finding out about dads gun I then thought it would be cool if I had my 686 that I sold to a friend 20 yrs ago so I would have the set.I contacted my friend a few weeks ago and told him the story and he is selling me the gun back.Now should I go through with having my gun shortened ? My gun is also special for the fact that I sold it to my best friend in 1991 and he still has it in the same condition and Im getting it back.Sould I just keep mine and dads gun as a set ?
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Old 07-20-2011, 11:07 PM
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My vote is go buy a M686 with a 2-1/2" barrel. You will never have too many L-frames.
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Old 07-21-2011, 08:32 PM
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I might put a hold on this project and possibly look into buying a 686 with shorter barrel like Engineer suggest or maybe just getting a 66.S&W is out of the 3'' barrels.

We are currently out of stock on the 3” we do have 2 barrels. The 2 barrel does take a shorter

Extractor rod which does change the travel.



From: Michael [mailto:iwastemoney2@aol.com]
Sent: Wednesday, July 20, 2011 9:13 PM
To: Goodwin, Wayne
Subject: Re: S&W 686
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