Ever get trigger work on your S&W J frame .38?

This is a discussion on Ever get trigger work on your S&W J frame .38? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I was curious if any of you had ever had a trigger job done on your .38 S&W J frame. I have the 637 model ...

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Thread: Ever get trigger work on your S&W J frame .38?

  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array Gideon's Avatar
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    Ever get trigger work on your S&W J frame .38?

    I was curious if any of you had ever had a trigger job done on your .38 S&W J frame. I have the 637 model and like it well enough but the trigger pull is terrible! I thought about having someone lighten and smooth it, and maybe even bob the hammer so it's DAO.

    Have any of you ever gone to this trouble with your J frame? Also, at a place called Gemini customs, they talk about cylinder shake, what's that? Is it worth it? If you've ever customized your J frame, I'd love to hear about it so I can get some ideas. I think a lighter trigger pull would help accuracy a lot!

    Thanks all.
    Gideon

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Array razorblade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gideon View Post
    I was curious if any of you had ever had a trigger job done on your .38 S&W J frame. I have the 637 model and like it well enough but the trigger pull is terrible! I thought about having someone lighten and smooth it, and maybe even bob the hammer so it's DAO.

    Have any of you ever gone to this trouble with your J frame? Also, at a place called Gemini customs, they talk about cylinder shake, what's that? Is it worth it? If you've ever customized your J frame, I'd love to hear about it so I can get some ideas. I think a lighter trigger pull would help accuracy a lot!

    Thanks all.
    Gideon
    I've never customized my J frame, although I've done all of the above and more on my IPSC revolver. Endshake on a cylinder is when there is a bit of side to side wiggle towards the face (the side with the ejector star). It's usually tightened with shims or thin metal inserts. Removing endsake prevents (in theory) the round being deformed when it hits the forcing cone, once it has been discharged. It helps center the primer to the firing pin hole. It also helps prevent excessive/unusual wear on the cylinder stops during lockup. For a CCW gun, it isn't worth it. Also you might not want to lower the weight of your trigger pull. When you begin diving into weights below 7lbs. you are taking a risk of not effictively igniting your primers. My 625 has barely 7lbs and it's like playing russian rulette with anything other than Federal primers. I've got a friend that has slightly over 4 lbs and he can't use anything but Federal.
    Keep the weight as it is, bob the hammer (if that is something you desire), smooth out the trigger pull and you are set.

  4. #3
    VIP Member Array ELCruisr's Avatar
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    No, not yet. I was going to originally but found the trigger had smoothed out quite a bit after 500 rounds so I'm holding off for now. I wouldn't want to lighten the trigger pull any for reasons stated above but smoothing it out wouldn't hurt.
    If you stand up and be counted, from time to time you may get yourself knocked down. But remember this: A man flattened by an opponent can get up again. A man flattened by conformity stays down for good. ~ Thomas J. Watson, Jr.

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    A trigger/action job is always a good idea, IMO, on a carry weapon. Speak with a couple of good gunsmiths about pros/cons of trigger work, focusing on 'smiths who value quality carry weaponry. You're betting your life on your ability to strike and stop an aggressive target. Anything you can do to increase the odds of doing this reliably and consistently is a good thing.

    The only caveat: hair triggers are a jury's best friend. So, like anything in life, everything in moderation.
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  6. #5
    Member Array estimber's Avatar
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    I had a Colt DS that had a horrible trigger pull. A gunsmith took it apart and found that there were metal shavings in the interior. After he cleaned it out he took the trigger bar and "stoned" it, to say that he smoothed it out. Becasue of this, it now has the smoothest trigger pull of any revolver that I own and without compromising the lbs of trigger pull. I would have a smith look at smoothing it up rather than lightning the trigger pull.
    If we treat every gun as if it was loaded, then why not treat every individual as if they are armed.

  7. #6
    Member Array bluesteel's Avatar
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    I got a model 60 pinned barrel that was made around 72. It has the best S&W out of the box j frame D/A trigger I have ever seen. It has become my wife's carry piece now, but I still shoot it on occasion.
    Why do I carry a Gun? Because I can't carry a Cop

  8. #7
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    I put a set of Wolff reduced power springs in my 637. The reduced hammer spring and trigger return spring gave me a DA pull weight that averaged between 7 and 8 lbs. It's also much smoother now, all the way through the pull. Installation was simple and the spring pack cost only about 15 bucks.

    The only caveat is that the single action pull is down to around 2.5 lbs. I'm considering bobbing the hammer to remove the single action pull alltogether. Haven't doen it yet though. I would never cock the hammer in a defensive situation anyway - sound advice whether or not your trigger has been altered.

    Reliability is 100% with everything I've tried, including Speer 135 gr +P Gold Dot short barrel, loads from Magtech, Black Hills, CCI, etc. No FTFs because of the lighter spring weight. From everything I've read, FTFs start happenign when you start cutting coils off a stock hammer spring, rather than going with a full-length spring of a lighter weight.

    Anyway, if you switch springs and don't like the pull or don't get 100% reliability, you're only out $15 and can replace the factory springs in 10 minutes.

  9. #8
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    Do Not Suffer With A Bad Heavy Trigger On Your Carry

    You'll never shoot to the best of your ability with it.

    I probably would not bob the hammer unless you intend to carry it around in your pocket.
    You may want to have that hammer there some day when the DooDoo Hits The Fan and you need to cock that hammer for an ultra~careful shot.

    You probably do not need to be at all concerned about "cylinder end shake" with any new S&W revolver and not for a newer carry gun.

    Get a "carry trigger and action job" done which will lighten things up a bit & smooth out the trigger pull without taking things to competition extremes.

    You probably will not want to pay for a full blown trigger and action job on a carry firearm.
    It's not very necessary.

    These (below) might help you out.


    S&W Action/Trigger Job Click Here

    Also Click Here

  10. #9
    Distinguished Member Array AKsrule's Avatar
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    Cool

    A Light trigger pull is not as important as a SMOOTH pull.
    A good smith can do wonders with a simple trigger polish job.

    Fortunately , my only S&W came with a great trigger.



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    I Would Be Careful...

    OMO...on the trigger jobs...
    But smoother is always better...

    Stay alert...stay safe!

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  12. #11
    Distinguished Member Array Gideon's Avatar
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    Good thoughts and input. My pull is really hard and makes it hard to place the second round near the first. I found that I did better when I put my finger further through the trigger guard and used the main joint crease on my trigger. Still, I believe I could be far more accurate with a smoother and lighter trigger. I agree I wouldn't want to pay as much for the trigger/action job as a new gun.

    I'm also intrigued by the idea of just changing the springs. If that would lighten the pull, that would be great.

    thanks for all of the advise. I think I'll just check around so see if I can find someone local who can do this for me and I won't worry about it past that point.
    Thanks and God Bless
    Gideon

  13. #12
    Senior Member Array razorblade's Avatar
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    Just remember, S&W's trigger weight is set high to guarentee successful ignition of any round put into the gun. The lighter the trigger pull, the less of a guarentee you begin to have, and this is not limited to clipped springs. Any light trigger pull will decrease the odds. The hammer spring of a S&W revolver is different than that of any semiautomatic. It's a leaf spring, not coil. When you begin to decrease tention on the spring (by turning the spring tentioning screw), you will begin to effect the way the spring can properly stack weight. Also, the spring must be at a certain arch (or degree of bend) to properly work. This will be the difference between smacking the firing pin, and actually driving the pin into the primer. If want to reduce your trigger weight, you're going to have to buy aftermarket reduced power springs. They were heat tempered to work properly (to get that degree of bend) at that specific weight.
    If you can get the gun to discharge using a sub 4lbs weight, more power to you. My carry 66 has factory weight. I just began squeezing a tennis ball to develop finger/hand strength.

  14. #13
    Member Array M1911's Avatar
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    No, but I've done trigger work on 3 of my J-frames.

    It isn't hard to put in a spring kit and lightly (emphasis: LIGHTLY) polish the rebound slide.

    Any light trigger pull will decrease the odds.
    I've significantly reduced the weight on mine, but they are still reliable even with CCI and Winchester primers.

    Yes, you can cut the springs too much, to the point where only Federal primers will work. But you don't have to go that far and you can significantly lighten the pull but still maintain reliability. These days, the factory trigger pulls are not what they used to be (or should be).

  15. #14
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    A Few Harmless Things To Try

    BEFORE you send your pistol off & spend $$$.

    Buy a replacment spring kit from Brownell's.

    Use a Spray Contact Cleaner/Degreaser and strip the firearm of all traces of internal lubrication and then Dry Fire the revolver about 200 times & then re~lubricate.

    If you do that (and it will NOT hurt a S&W revolver in the least) the internal parts will often friction polish themselves in the most critical "metal to metal" contact areas.
    It's an old, safe, gunsmith trick and it usually always helps a bit and with a Smith & Wesson it never hurts the firearm. It's an "ages ago" S&W approved technique for smoothing the internals up a bit.
    Liberty Over Tyranny Μολὼν λαβέ

  16. #15
    VIP Member Array JimmyC4's Avatar
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    I've had my gunsmith do the job he recommends, which is a spring kit that helps reduce pull a bit, plus his polishing work. The outcome was favorable, it's a bit lighter and much smooter.

    It cost me $42 total for parts and labor.

    Find someone who has experience and that you trust.
    "It's a big gun when I carry it, it is also a big gun when I take it out” – Clint Smith

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