What is this S&W lock thing?

This is a discussion on What is this S&W lock thing? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Read a couple places about a "lock" system on the new S&W revolvers. What is it? What problems does it present? Can it be removed? ...

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Thread: What is this S&W lock thing?

  1. #1
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    Question What is this S&W lock thing?

    Read a couple places about a "lock" system on the new S&W revolvers. What is it? What problems does it present? Can it be removed?

    Want to buy a model 60 and would prefer a good used one but will buy new but need to know about the "lock thing".

    Information appreciated.
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    VIP Member Array Snub44's Avatar
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    ...S&W chose to build into most models a "safety lock" requiring a key a few years back...why matters not...
    ...some of us don't like them, some don't mind...

    ...the older Smiths don't have them, as well as being better made weapons(fit and finish, etc) than some of the newer ones...so some of us(ME) won't own one with the keyhole...leaving more for those who don't mind...

    ...that's the short version...
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    VIP Member Array Taurahe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snub44 View Post
    ...S&W chose to build into most models a "safety lock" requiring a key a few years back...why matters not...
    ...some of us don't like them, some don't mind...

    ...the older Smiths don't have them, as well as being better made weapons(fit and finish, etc) than some of the newer ones...so some of us(ME) won't own one with the keyhole...leaving more for those who don't mind...

    ...that's the short version...
    This is the short of it. I want to say there was issues with the lock unintentionally engaging but dont quote me on that. I personally have no issues with the lock guns and would not hesitate to buy one, new or used. as far as removing them, i want to say that is not possible.
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    The lock really isnt a problem, That said had gemini remove mine In my mod 60 when they went over it.
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    The "Internal Lock" is a locking system that precludes the gun from firing. In the revolvers, it prevents the hammer from being drawn back. You can see the lock keyhole in revolvers just above the thumb piece that you push forward to release the cylinder. There were early reports of inadvertent lock-ups on scandium framed guns shooting heavy loads. I have several SW revolvers with the locks, I've shot thousands of rounds, and not had a problem. It's not really a security device, it's a safety device for safe STORAGE - if you decide to use the lock, it will prevent someone (think small kid) from shooting the gun. IT IS NOT USED WHEN CARRYING.

    If you want the model 60 in snub nose with the capability to shoot the .357 but NO lock, you will want to buy a model 60-9.

    If you will only shoot .38's, then you can purchase a 60-7, which is a ".38 only" j-frame. It's slightly less bulky than the current J-Magnum (60-9) j-frame. The current magnum snub is the 60-14. A dash history is below. Note that some of the very early model 60's (60 no dash) had grooved, not smooth, triggers, and those grooved triggers with sharp, 90 degree edges can be a bit unconformable. I believe the 60-3's and beyond have the smooth, more comfortable triggers. Others here with more knowledge will set me straight if I'm wrong, I'm sure.

    The lock does not bother me.


    60 - introduced in 1965
    60-1 (1972) 3 in square butt limited production
    60-2 (1987) DAO NYPD?
    60-3 (1988) New yoke retention system
    60-4 (1990) 3 in target sights full underlug barrel
    60-5 (1990) DAO for NYPD with new yoke retention
    60-6 (1989) Ladysmith version
    60-7 (1990) front sight 1/8 inch wide, new heat treatment
    60-8 (1990) same as 60-7 for NYPD
    60-9 (1996) change to J magnum frame
    60-10 (1996) Target variation on J magnum frame
    60-11 (1996) New frame design for 38 Special version only
    60-12 (1996) new frame nose cut
    60-13 (1996) same as 60-12 but target version
    60-14 (2001) Ladysmith with internal lock
    60-15 (2001) internal lock on 357 mag target version
    60-16 (2001) internal lock on 38 Special 2 in
    60-17 (2001) internal lock on 38 Special 3 inch target
    60-18 (2005) internal lock 357 Mag 5 inch target 2 pc barrel
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    Senior Member Array jca1's Avatar
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    On the drivers side of the frame, just above the cylinder release, is a key lock. The lock, when engaged, stops the hammer via a little nub. The new no lock models, or older pre-lock are more desirable. For the most part, the older S&W's are more desirable anyways due to better quality, both in parts and assembly. I have a newer Smith with the lock and I like it just fine.
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    My Dad didn't have the S&W,but he does have a Tracker 44 5 shot revolver with the key lock below the hammer.It hasn't given him any problems,in the 3 yrs he has had it,he said.

    He did say when he stores the gun he locks the hammer.That way,if someone stole it they were out of luck using it.

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    Although I couldn't find it when doing a search before posting this thread, I did find this older thread here on this forum through a Google search:

    Smith & Wesson Internal Lock Failure! (& fix)
    Google also lists other threads, same subject.

    What would I do without google Should have googled the question before posting, eh???

    THANKS TO ALL WHO ANSWERED MY QUESTION THIS TIME AROUND
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mandpgrl View Post
    My Dad didn't have the S&W,but he does have a Tracker 44 5 shot revolver with the key lock below the hammer.It hasn't given him any problems,in the 3 yrs he has had it,he said.

    He did say when he stores the gun he locks the hammer.That way,if someone stole it they were out of luck using it.
    I'm not sure about Taurus, but all SW's use the same hex key. So once you have a key, you can unlock them all.
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    -PEF, a Framer with a Steelie...
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    1. All guns are always loaded.
    2. Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.
    3. Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target.
    4. Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.

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    Ex Member Array Manderinobyebye's Avatar
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    PEF,that could be true.It was a Taurus and it did have a hex key.He showed it to me one day,and how it worked.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ShooterGranny View Post
    Although I couldn't find it when doing a search before posting this thread, I did find this older thread here on this forum through a Google search:

    Smith & Wesson Internal Lock Failure! (& fix)
    Google also lists other threads, same subject.

    What would I do without google Should have googled the question before posting, eh???
    Interesting. I also have a 637-2, and I have shot 1,192 rounds through it without hiccup. I don't doubt lock failures, but I do think they are very unlikely. Some may have been the result of partially activated locks.

    But if you are concerned about the lock, and you want a 60 snub, get either a 60-9 (.357) or a 60, 60-3, or 60-7 (.38 only).
    -PEF, a Framer with a Steelie...
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    1. All guns are always loaded.
    2. Never let the muzzle cover anything you are not willing to destroy.
    3. Keep your finger off the trigger until your sights are on the target.
    4. Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PEF View Post
    But if you are concerned about the lock, and you want a 60 snub, get either a 60-9 (.357) or a 60, 60-3, or 60-7 (.38 only).
    I would love to do that. From what I've seen so far the used 60's for sale are in really bad condition. But it is not an emergency so I will be patient. (My husband would split his sides laughing if he read that I said I could be patient about anything........)
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    VIP Member Array Snub44's Avatar
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    ...if you google it, some have experienced problems while firing "lock" models...and it is possible to "remove" or disable the lock, even nice little plugs made to "fill" the hole...but why go there to start with...
    Quote Originally Posted by Taurahe View Post
    This is the short of it. I want to say there was issues with the lock unintentionally engaging but dont quote me on that. I personally have no issues with the lock guns and would not hesitate to buy one, new or used. as far as removing them, i want to say that is not possible.
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    VIP Member Array Snub44's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mandpgrl View Post
    My Dad didn't have the S&W,but he does have a Tracker 44 5 shot revolver with the key lock below the hammer.It hasn't given him any problems,in the 3 yrs he has had it,he said.

    He did say when he stores the gun he locks the hammer.That way,if someone stole it they were out of luck using it.
    ...the Taurus lock accepts any allen wrench that size...the Taurus key is an allen wrench with a fancy head on it...I have turned it with a small screwdriver...I think the Smith style may be more childproof...I haven't picked one up to look at it closely...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Snub44 View Post
    ...the Taurus lock accepts any allen wrench that size...the Taurus key is an allen wrench with a fancy head on it...I have turned it with a small screwdriver...I think the Smith style may be more childproof...I haven't picked one up to look at it closely...
    The most sensible one I've seen is the one Ruger puts on the LCR. The grips have to be removed to access it. After it's locked just put the grip back on until you're ready to unlock it again for use. That's childproof.

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