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Thread: Top strap cutting question.

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
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    Top strap cutting question.

    I see three gas cutting lines.

    Doesn't this mean the barrel has been set back twice already?



    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    Could those be lines from when they tapped the frame for the barrel ?

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
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    I don't know. This is another Mod 29,no such lines. This has a verified 1k round count only,still lots of cone wear already:


  4. #4
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    I believe that those lines are machining marks leftover from broaching the frame window and tapping barrel threads in the frame.

    The amount of forcing cone erosion your barrel shows at the face of the barrel extension protruding into the frame window indicates the gun has been shot much with hot loads. You would be advised to set back the barrel a full thread, reface the barrel extension and to re-cut and lap the forcing cone, establishing correct cylinder gap to new assembly specs. pass 0.003"/hold 0.004".

    Name:  RecutS&W11-degreeforcingcone.jpg
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    Here is what a newly refitted, reamed and lapped barrel face and forcing cone should look like.
    Last edited by Outpost75; 02-01-2020 at 11:53 AM.
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  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    Outpost,thank you.

    Which barrel looks better to you? Now that I know and can trust,the second one has true 1000 rounds. It has been in a safe for 20+ years,the owner bought it new in -90.

    Just thinking...

  6. #6
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Petander View Post
    Outpost,thank you.

    Which barrel looks better to you? Now that I know and can trust,the second one has true 1000 rounds. It has been in a safe for 20+ years,the owner bought it new in -90.

    Just thinking...
    Both show circumferential tool marks in the forcing cone and erosion of the barrel face. If the guns shoot well, do not have more than 0.002" yoke or cylinder end-shake and cylinder gap doesn't exceed pass 0.008/hold 0.009" with rear gage in place, gun is still within customer service specs. I would reduce your loads below 1200 Bar or about 17,000 psi if you want the gun to last.
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  7. #7
    Boolit Master Moleman-'s Avatar
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    I would of guessed a lot higher round count than 1000. It looks very similar to mine that has over 45k rounds through it before I stopped counting.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by onelight View Post
    Could those be lines from when they tapped the frame for the barrel ?
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  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    Even if the barrel had been set back, the flame cutting would be in the exact same spot, within a few .001" anyway.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by megasupermagnum View Post
    Even if the barrel had been set back, the flame cutting would be in the exact same spot, within a few .001" anyway.
    Yes,this is my obvious brain fart that I noticed soon after posting.

    So these are two different guns.

    Gun #1 with a red arrow is too far for me to get my hands on. The seller is a gunsmith with a shop,I started questioning the facts after he explained the gun condition "as new with some cutter marks from a factory tool". Meaning the cone erosion. He either lied or didn't know,either way I feel uneasy. No history about the gun is known.

    Gun #1:

    .


    Gun #2 was bought new in -90, fired mostly in the 90's too. The owner has had it in his safe,unused,for 20 plus years now,after the 90's. We talked over the phone for an hour about guns,hunting,he sounds like a man who takes care of his guns abd knows guns & hunting. No fancy talk about " excellent condition" etc. He has made parts for reloading dies using a lathe,seating stems. He told me about buying 500 bullets first,then 500 factory rounds that he shot with a friend... I am only wondering why the cone looks like this after 1000 rounds...!

    I can get my hands on the gun #2 next weekend. I think the outer edge looks a little cleaner than #1, doesn't it?

    Gun #2:

    .

    It's generally safer to buy from a shop but in this case I'm not so sure. Both guns bluing and general outside appearence look fine in the pics. Like they often do.
    Last edited by Petander; 02-01-2020 at 03:26 AM.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master

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    In the case of gun #2 you are confusing throat erosion with flame cutting. Flame cutting is into the top strap and is a lot more severe than the photo of gun #1. The most notorious offender was the Ruger Blackhawk in .357 Max. I campaigned a couple of them in the 80's while shooting sillywett. They would cut 1/8" into the top strap.
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  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by stubshaft View Post
    In the case of gun #2 you are confusing throat erosion with flame cutting. Flame cutting is into the top strap and is a lot more severe than the photo of gun #1. The most notorious offender was the Ruger Blackhawk in .357 Max. I campaigned a couple of them in the 80's while shooting sillywett. They would cut 1/8" into the top strap.
    Thank you.

    Because of a coinsidence,the owner of the Gun#2 drove by here yesterday. So we met and I saw the gun.I took my range rods,and whatevever tools with me,also showed the owner this thread.

    This gun is a perfect example of mega-hot light bullet VV N110 loads. There have been 500 of those loads,then 500 factory rounds. I got a box of those ancient handloads to examine... Yeah I got them because I bought the gun as "to be repaired".

    250 € was a good price,that included dies,100 Fiocchi factory rounds,and a few hundred pcs of brass. There was yoke shake that I "repaired" by tightening the screw back in,it was 3/4 turn loose. Light pitting in the barrel I got rid of already. Bluing has some spots that need work.

    But timing is excellent,endshake acceptable for now,gap & headspace are in specs. Cylinders feel pretty even, no exact measuring done yet but .430-432 they are.

    I chose this because I trusted the owner's story about the gun. This was becoming scrap metal to him, no places where to shoot etc... I think I'll be able to make this a nice shooter. Yes I'll cut a new cone one day.

    Revolvers are not in high demand here in Finland,our prices are half the USA prices.






  13. #13
    Boolit Master
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    Going...


  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    Back off the loads and enjoy the guns until you pass them on. A 44 will kill most things at 900 FPS and up. I shoot a lot reduced 357 and 44 mag at 1100 FPS and see no reason to go more. The 44 magnum just legitimized the hotter 44 special loads. Just my .02.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    I chose a Vihtavuori N110 starting load, s 255 SWC @ 1300 fps. Nice and easy in this heavy gun.

    It's been a while since I had a 44 Mag, I only found a .430 sizer and used that. Too small I know,still no bad leading with those 30 rounds I made to test.

    Shoots straight if I do my part. Got some sluggin' to do now.

    A sight adjusting target:


  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Vihtavuori N110 starting load gives me 1350 fps with Lee 260 SWC. It's better than I expected,looking at the forcing cone.


  17. #17
    Boolit Master
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    Same N110 start load with Fed 215 instead of CCI LP. This is approx 1450 fps at the muzzle.

    I will not rush repairing this forcing cone,got a much worse 586 to do first.


  18. #18
    Boolit Master
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    I honed a Lee sizer to get .431 bullets. Instant change from patterns to groups. Need another sizer to make it larger,I'll keep this one for now.

    20 meters standing,cold,gloves.



    There is very light pitting in the bore that keeps bothering me but I'm trying to NOT think about it. It will disappear.

  19. #19
    Boolit Master Thumbcocker's Avatar
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    What a difference .001 makes. Good shooting.
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  20. #20
    Boolit Master

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    A silhouette M-29 no less!! Those are few and far between to be found. Think I have seen 3 for sale, the last 20 years. Shot one for a short time.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check