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1/25/2018 7:38:29 AM
Posted: 10/22/2003 4:24:24 PM EST

I ran into a very good deal on a used S&W 686 and I wanted to ask you guys about something my shooting buddies mentioned.

Is is true that some older versions of the 686's, the ones that were forged, have some problems with the screw under the trigger? Something about getting loose and screwing the wheel when trying to remove it.

Is this a real problem or something that is not to worry about? (IF it's something like yeah, shooting 10000 rounds on a row will loosen it I couldn't care less)

How better are the new models that are microfusionsomething instead of forged regarding this particular issue?

Basically what I'm asking is if its a bad idea to buy an 686 version.


Link Posted: 10/22/2003 5:02:04 PM EST
The older S&W's are better than the new ones in my opion. I currently have a 681, 36 and a Mdl 15 and have not had any of them shoot a srecw loose. I've owned many, many, many J,K,L and N framed S&W revolvers and have never had any of them shoot a screw loose either.
Link Posted: 10/23/2003 2:31:04 AM EST
I've heard about shooting Smiths and having a screw loose, but I think they were refering to the shooter, nut the gun.

There was a problem on the 686-nothing and the 686-1. It was possible on those to have the cylinder hang when shooting one particulr brand of 125grs IIRC. Look inside the yoke and see what model it is. If it is a 686-nothing or a 686-1 and has had the recall done it will have an s stamped in there. Later models did not have that problem. Those that did would be repaired for free by Smith.
Link Posted: 10/23/2003 2:46:23 AM EST
Most people seem to prefer the older forged parts to the current MIM parts. When you buy one of the current S&W Performance Center guns, they use forged parts in place of the MIM parts found in the standard production guns.

Link Posted: 10/23/2003 3:12:02 AM EST
Not exactly sure what you are talking about when you say the "screw under the trigger" and "screwing the wheel" when trying to revove it.

The older M19 / 66 "K" frames and...I believe...some early "L" frames (586 / 686)...maybe the 6in. 686's still have it...not sure... had a small "trigger stop" behind the trigger which was screwed into a threaded hole in the frame and could be accessed by removing the sideplate and taking out the trigger. This trigger stop screw could back out under recoil and allow the trigger stop to rotate enough to prevent the trigger from moving all the way through its' arc, thus tying the action up. It can...and should be removed from duty guns, but may also be loctited in place for target guns. It has zero effect for DA shooting anyway.

At some point, S&W also changed the yoke screw (screw in sideplate that is closest to the muzzle) from a fitted, solid screw to a design using a hollow, "female" nut ...which is threaded like a screw...with a spring-loaded plunger inside to keep tension on the yoke. (For those who do not realize it, the yoke screw and the other round-headed sideplate screw on three-screw S&W's made before this change are the same EXCEPT for the fact that the yoke screw is hand fitted to the yoke.) It is not uncommon to find where they have been switched by users who then may find that the yoke, complete with cylinder, will come right off of the frame when the cylinder is opened and the muzzle pointed downward. Simple fix? Switch screws. The flat-headed screw always goes under the grips.

Should you decide to remove the yoke and cylinder for cleaning, etc. be aware that it is not uncommon to lose the spring and plunger from the later models when doing so. Yes, the gun will still shoot with the cylinder back in correctly...but reloading will be very slow...Ha!

Maybe that helps?
Link Posted: 10/23/2003 3:59:13 AM EST
I have a 686 that's about 15 years old. I carried it as a duty gun before we went to semi autos. I recently used it at a firearms instructor class. Shot a zillion rounds through it, and it still works great...Don't know anything about the new ones though....
Link Posted: 10/23/2003 4:56:03 AM EST
[Last Edit: 10/23/2003 4:57:55 AM EST by deimos]

That's the screw I'm talking about
(Duh, that's not UNDER...[abused])

I've been told that it loosens and blocks the wheel to fall normally to reload.

This one I'm considering is a 686-3

Link Posted: 10/23/2003 6:24:30 AM EST

That's the yoke screw I discussed above. I believe the 686-3 will have the newer screw design. I really cannot see how the screw loosening could prevent the cylinder and yoke from opening...the problem if it loosens should be that the cylinder / yoke assembly will fall to the ground once open.

My wild-assed guess is that what you are hearing about is the extractor rod coming loose under recoil...and that WILL cause the cylinder to not open if it unscrews far enough. This rod has a left-hand thread, and if it should come loose, is no problem to retighten. Correct procedure is to place three empty cases in the cylinder in evenly spaced chambers, then place the cylinder in a padded vise and tighten the rod with a pair of pliars with padded jaws. You can cut up an old belt, etc. to use as padding for a one-time job.

If the rod loosens enough to not allow the cylinder to open, take a very thin piece of cardboard or a folded piece of heavier paper and insert between the frame and the cylinder, then slide it to the rear of the cylinder (end nearest the grips) this will push the cylinder stop down and allow you th spin the cylinder so that the rid tightens and you can get the gun open. If the gun is still loaded while you do this, be VERY DAMNED CAREFUL!

None of this is a serious problem...get the gun and enjoy it...very nice pistol.

Link Posted: 10/23/2003 12:04:03 PM EST
No MIM hammer and trigger and no stupid trigger lock. I prefer the older S&W revolvers.
Link Posted: 10/23/2003 2:16:12 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/23/2003 2:18:15 PM EST by sig_230]

We wern't picking on you about over or under the trigger. What we were asking, since so many older smiths look similar was about the old 5 screw models. Long long ago in a land far far away, Smith had yet another screw that was on the front of the trigger guard. Maybe you can see it in this picture.

And this one spent 50+ years in the Brazilian Jungles and is still going strong today.
Link Posted: 10/23/2003 2:31:03 PM EST

Originally Posted By sig_230:
We wern't picking on you about over or under the trigger.

I didn't think you were picking on me

I like the older models myself, I just wanted to make sure there wasn't any problems I wasn't aware of before buying it, which I just did!!

Thanx for all the help, in a week or so, when I get all the papers and I can go pick it up I'll post pictures


Link Posted: 10/23/2003 5:55:57 PM EST
Range report. We need a range report.
Link Posted: 10/29/2003 8:57:47 AM EST
Woo Hoo, I finally got itt!!

(Hogue rubber grips are on my way)

Range test on Saturday, Range Report on Monday

Thanx again for all the answers!

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