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newbie question - firing .38 special with a S & W 686 issue

Discussion in 'Handgun Discussion' started by duldej, Jun 7, 2012.

  1. duldej

    duldej Portland Member

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    I just got back from the range where I brought my S & W 686 plus, and used the range's magtech .38 special ammunition. It was a little frustrating because 2-3 rounds out of seven would not fire. the gun just clicked when it got to those non-firing bullets. is it the gun's fault or is it the ammunition? This was my first time firing this gun. I went through 50 rounds this way, having to pull-out and throw-away the ones that did not fire.
     
  2. Levi

    Levi Portland Oregon Member

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    I would try some different ammo. I know the feeling I had a Taurus that did the same thing.
     
  3. charros93

    charros93 Puget Sound Active Member

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    yes different ammo, if still having problems, sent it back to S&W. They have a lifetime warranty and good customer service. Good luck!
     
  4. TOVO

    TOVO SW WA. Active Member

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    Sorry to hear about your issues. Had my 686 for almost 27 years and never had a problem with any kind of ammo. I am sure S&W will sort it out and you will love the gun.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  5. wombat

    wombat Kirkland, WA Member

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    What's the barrel length?

    ... try Federal 158gr semi wad cutter round nose.

    If there are still fail to fire, +1 with charros93.
     
  6. Sun195

    Sun195 Pugetropolis, WA Well-Known Member

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    Agree - try different ammo, and if same problem, send back to S&W. They have good warranty service (or at least, that's been my experience).

    I have a 686 and haven't had these kinds of problems with it.
     
  7. duldej

    duldej Portland Member

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    thanks for the input. 4" barrel. I think I made a mistake buying it used.
     
  8. Sheldon

    Sheldon California Member

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    Nothing wrong with a good used gun.

    Were the primer strikes light on the rounds? If so, check the strain screw for the mainspring under the grips and be sure it is screwed in all the way tight. It will sometimes get loose or someone will loosen it to get the trigger pull lighter. I would have rotated the cylinder back onto the fired rounds that didn't go off and try firing on them again.
     
  9. Throckmorton

    Throckmorton Florence,Ore ah gone Well-Known Member

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    excellent advice ! the 686 is considered by some..me included..to be 'IT' where 'Smith revolvers are concerned.don't be in a hurry to sell it.
     
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  10. GuyBMeredith

    GuyBMeredith Salem, Oregon Active Member

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    Good suggestion. I've had this happen with a mainspring strain screw on the loose side. Drop on a bit of blue loctite and tighten it down.

    If tightening the main spring strain screw does not work, I will add my support for going to the S&W shop. Great service.
     
  11. duldej

    duldej Portland Member

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    ack. I'm not sure about all that technical stuff, but thanks for your advice. No, it is an amazing shooting machine. I brought it back to the dealer today to send it to S & W for repairs. I want it to shoot reliably any type of .38 rounds like TOVO's or Sun195's experiences. I was lucky... I brought it in on the 30th day of a 30-day warranty policy, so I am expecting the best. I will let you know in a few weeks how it goes.
     
  12. duldej

    duldej Portland Member

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    This is good advice. I have decided to leave it to the experts.
     
  13. 9mmguy

    9mmguy Portland, OR Member

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    Are semiwadcutters considered lead ammo? I am not so much concerned about barrel fouling, but my range doesn't allow "lead ammo." I would love to try some Buffalo Bore 158 in my Model 10, but I am not sure that's okay.
     
  14. Swedish K

    Swedish K SW Washington Moderator Staff Member

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    as stated above - it was most likely the loose screw - also could be a failed attempt at a home trigger job. I've never had any issues with my 686 running .357 or 38special. While I don't feel my 686 is an ideal daily carry gun, I would have to say its definitely my favorite handgun and a true pleasure to shoot. I hope yours comes back working correctly - it will serve you well for years to come.
     
  15. Swedish K

    Swedish K SW Washington Moderator Staff Member

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    Buffalo Bore's 158gr is a copper jacketed bullet - if the range allows jacketed bullets they should be fine - however they also load a lead free 125gr. The 180gr are hard cast lead. The buffalo bore rounds are all near the top of the accepted pressure ranges but still within industry standards and are deemed safe in any gun in good working condition - they only say that they do not suggest shooting them in lightweight (scandium/titanium framed) guns as the light weight combined with the increased recoil from a hot load could lead to the other bullets in the cylinder "jumping crimp" which could lead to unsafe pressures.

    I shot some 200 grain doubletap out of my .357 yesterday - more recoil than standard .357 but not uncomfortable to shoot.
     
  16. GuyBMeredith

    GuyBMeredith Salem, Oregon Active Member

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    Actually, dealing with the main spring is simple. You will want to take the grip off to clean the revolver and as soon as you do the mainspring and set screw are right there in front of you and pretty obvious as to function.
     
  17. Velzey

    Velzey Estacada, Oregon Gunsmith Gunsmith Bronze Vendor Bronze Supporter

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    Yah could be the ammo! Or the mainspring is weak. Mainspring is $12.00 from gunsprings.com , and would save you the hassle of boxing and shipping, and waiting for your pistol to return.
     
  18. Blitzkrieg

    Blitzkrieg WA Well-Known Member

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    It's super easy to tighten the tension screw on the grip frame.. you may have to remove the grip if it covers the screw
     
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  19. K-22

    K-22 Vancouver WA Active Member

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    Depending on when your Smith was made, (after1991 I am thinking) your gun may have S&W's lifetime warranty.
    Best,
    Gary
     
  20. MarkAd

    MarkAd Port Orchard Well-Known Member

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    FYI - A semi-wad cutter is not a round nose bullet design.

    Keep the 686. It rocks. I bought mine used and the only issue I have is I love my 1911 a bit more.