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Thread: S&W and the forcing cone cracking issue

  1. #21
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mitch View Post
    I bought a realy nice 14-3 and shot about 100 rounds and the barrel chipped onthe flat.It was more or less sorry about your luck fromS&W.all they offered was for me to find a barrel an they would install it.
    An option is to set your original barrel back a thread and re-fit it. A common gunsmith fix which works well when correctly done, but the S&W factory won't do it.
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  2. #22
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    I had a M19-2? that I bought almost new in the 1970's,from an Old LAPD Officer. LAPD Did Not Allow it's Officers to Carry Magnum Chambered Revolvers. Shot about 500+ Full Power .357Mag Loads with Lyman #358156GC over Max charges of 2400. And at least 2,000 of the Skeeter Load. Settled on a .38-44 Load with the #358429 over Unique. Shot a fair amount of those. Never had a problem with any cracks in the bbl/frame.

    Sold it off in around 1992 to finance more Cowboy Guns. Told the guy I sold to stay away from 125gr .357Mag loads, in fact use only .38Spl loads.

    He came to Me less then 6 months later. Forcing cone and frame were both cracked.
    He had put over 500 125gr & 110grs .357Mag rounds thru it.
    I owned that Revolver for almost 20yrs. Treated it Repectfully. That Idiot destroyed it in 6months.

    The thing is I sold it through the LAPD Harbor Range. A place you were NOT Allowed to shoot Magnum Loads at.
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  3. #23
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    anyone ever look at what damage high end 110 and 125 grain 38+p loads can do to the frame?

  4. #24
    Boolit Grand Master tazman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nikonuser View Post
    anyone ever look at what damage high end 110 and 125 grain 38+p loads can do to the frame?
    No one has reported issues from 38 Special regardless of the bullet weight.
    Lots of older K-frame 38 special revolvers out there that get shot a lot. No issues I have ever heard of about forcing cone cracking.
    Even with +P loads, the velocities and pressures are much lower than 357 magnum loads at the forcing cone area.
    The decision to use the K-frame for magnum loads with that flat spot on the bottom of the forcing cone was a poor design choice regardless of it's popularity. It did sell a lot of revolvers for them though.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by tazman View Post
    No one has reported issues from 38 Special regardless of the bullet weight.
    Lots of older K-frame 38 special revolvers out there that get shot a lot. No issues I have ever heard of about forcing cone cracking.
    Even with +P loads, the velocities and pressures are much lower than 357 magnum loads at the forcing cone area.
    The decision to use the K-frame for magnum loads with that flat spot on the bottom of the forcing cone was a poor design choice regardless of it's popularity. It did sell a lot of revolvers for them though.
    a lot of 110 - 125 grain jhp 38 +p loads hit LOW end 357 magnum velocity, but using the same powder, and still having a fireball coming out of the cylinder gap its a good question.

  6. #26
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    considering that MOST say the damage occurred from the short bullet having so much free bore to be bouncing around when it hit the forcing cone, that as the chamber throat to forcing cone distance is the same for both rounds... the possibility should be there.

  7. #27
    Boolit Grand Master tazman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nikonuser View Post
    considering that MOST say the damage occurred from the short bullet having so much free bore to be bouncing around when it hit the forcing cone, that as the chamber throat to forcing cone distance is the same for both rounds... the possibility should be there.
    The possibility is still there but would take significantly longer since the bullet just isn't hitting the forcing cone as hard. Even LOW end 357 magnum loads are much less than full power magnum loads.
    I really don't have any way to tell how fast the bullet is going leaving the cylinder. Perhaps someone has done tests on this at some time.
    All I can compare is the difference in velocity between short barreled 38 special and 357 magnum loads as listed on ballistics by the inch. The expected velocities differ by 200-400fps. I would call that a significant difference in impact force.

  8. #28
    Boolit Grand Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by nikonuser View Post
    considering that MOST say the damage occurred from the short bullet having so much free bore to be bouncing around when it hit the forcing cone, that as the chamber throat to forcing cone distance is the same for both rounds... the possibility should be there.
    I don't know who you are counting in that group of "MOST" but the short bullet "bouncing around" isn't a well accepted or credible source of the problem.

    Short bullets (light bullets), ball powders, lots of powder, the cut at the bottom of the forcing cone, gas cutting, lots of pressure and other factors led to cracking of the forcing cones on magnum K-frames.
    I've never heard anyone talk about the bullet "bouncing around" as a factor of cracked forcing cones.

  9. #29
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    Kind of getting away from forcing cone cracking in .357 revolvers but has anyone heard of this happening in the S&W 696? I've stayed away from hot loads in mine because of the very thin wall of the barrel that extends thru the frame. Not a big deal since I have no reason to load it hot anyway. I had rather use a heavier bullet instead of upping velocity.
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  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Petrol & Powder View Post
    I don't know who you are counting in that group of "MOST" but the short bullet "bouncing around" isn't a well accepted or credible source of the problem.

    Short bullets (light bullets), ball powders, lots of powder, the cut at the bottom of the forcing cone, gas cutting, lots of pressure and other factors led to cracking of the forcing cones on magnum K-frames.
    I've never heard anyone talk about the bullet "bouncing around" as a factor of cracked forcing cones.
    I think it was one of the off brand smith and Wesson fan sites that put it out that the cracked forcing cone was caused by the high velocity, light weight 110-125 grain bullets having room to "wobble" between the cylinder face and the forcing cone because the short length of bullet did not give the same smooth transition as a full size bullet like a 158 grain swc or 148 grain wadcutter.
    Thus the wobble/tumble let the bullet hit the forcing cone at angles OTHER then 90 degrees, letting it slam into the forcing cone face and cause stress.

    Remember a small ruger gp100 group in the early 2000's that claimed to have successfully used and lab tested 357 magnum loads wit spritzer type bullets that were hitting 50,000 PSI ONLY because the spritzer shape kept the cylinder and barrel locked up correctly in a straight line during the bullets transition into barrel.

  11. #31
    Boolit Master Drm50's Avatar
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    I've owned dozens of m19 S&Ws. The bulk being 4" ex PD guns. I have never seen one with cracked forcing cone. I have seen a Hi-Standard snubby 357 and a Python 4" with forcing cone damage.

  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by nikonuser View Post
    I think it was one of the off brand smith and Wesson fan sites that put it out that the cracked forcing cone was caused by the high velocity, light weight 110-125 grain bullets having room to "wobble" between the cylinder face and the forcing cone because the short length of bullet did not give the same smooth transition as a full size bullet like a 158 grain swc or 148 grain wadcutter.
    Thus the wobble/tumble let the bullet hit the forcing cone at angles OTHER then 90 degrees, letting it slam into the forcing cone face and cause stress.

    Remember a small ruger gp100 group in the early 2000's that claimed to have successfully used and lab tested 357 magnum loads wit spritzer type bullets that were hitting 50,000 PSI ONLY because the spritzer shape kept the cylinder and barrel locked up correctly in a straight line during the bullets transition into barrel.
    Would you care to revise your earlier post and replace the word "Most" with, "I once read something written by a single contributor to another forum that claimed ______"?
    OR would you care to cite that source so that the rest of us can read it?

  13. #33
    Boolit Grand Master tazman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drm50 View Post
    I've owned dozens of m19 S&Ws. The bulk being 4" ex PD guns. I have never seen one with cracked forcing cone. I have seen a Hi-Standard snubby 357 and a Python 4" with forcing cone damage.
    I have owned 2 S&W model 19 revolvers. One of them had the crack in the forcing cone. The one I currently own has seen nothing but 38 special during the time I have owned it.

  14. #34
    Boolit Master
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    I personally have 2 friends that have had cracked forcing cones in mod.19s both liked full power 125 grain a lot.

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