S&W's Pistol Techs

Discussion in 'Feedback Forum' started by Brass Tacks, Jun 12, 2012.

  1. Brass Tacks

    Brass Tacks New Member

    Jan 9, 2012
    NW Arkansas
    The saga began in April when I purchased a new S&W M&P-22 for my wife's usage. After removing the gear oil applied at the factory it was ready for a trip to the range. The first pull of the trigger resulted in a SNAP. Misfire due to light primer strike. Lost count in the number. Even the rounds that ignited were much lighter strikes than I've ever seen with a .22.

    Filled out S&W's return form on the inter-web and received a FedEx shipping label and it was on it's way that afternoon, May 16th, and in their hands on the 18th. FedEx placed it in my hands yesterday, June 11th. Great!

    In the box was a letter stating the "handgun had been reviewed by two pistol technicians and found to be within our manufacturing specifications. No repairs have been performed." WTF We went to the range that afternoon to try again. Again, the first pull of the trigger resulted in a SNAP. Misfire after misfire. As before we tried 4 different brands of ammo, same results. I am not a happy camper. Guess I'll take it apart myself, I couldn't make it much worse.

    Taking it down was put on a short hold while I searched for the extractor spring that had exited the assembly, it was found. Inspection showed no obvious defects. Looking at the business end of the firing pin I noticed something I hadn't seen before. Right above the area that actually dents the primer was a protrusion that would make contact with the breech right above the chamber to limit the depth of the strike. AHH HA ! I removed .010" from the protrusion and reassembled the pistol. When we built our house I could step out the back door and cut loose a mag but civilization has now surrounded us so it's back to the range.

    200 rounds without a hiccup. The wife was cranking them off faster than I could load the mags. SUCCESS The strikes are now sharp and pronounced as they should be.

    This will be my last S&W purchase if that's the best their "pistol technicians" can do.
  2. raven818

    raven818 Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2011
    Jax, Fl.
    Prior to 10-3-11, I was a member at another site ( no more ). That particular weapon, IMO, is a fine looking piece of work. I must have looked at several hundred of them attached to threads ( looove the look ). Not many complaints at all.

    Happy to hear you worked your issue out yourself. S&W puts out some fine weapons. I wouldn't judge them negatively based on that one issue.

    There's a HUGE list of all types of weapons on a web site, that have been recalled for one reason or another. I found my 6906 on the list ( grip issue ). I bought it new. I sent it back to Smith at the end of last year to fix, for free. Had it back in a week.

    Usually, pretty good folks to work with.

  3. Gun Geezer

    Gun Geezer Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2009
    Central Florida
    Over the past couple of yrs., I've read that S&W's quality has been slipping but their prices sure haven't. I still have several older S&W's but for now, I'll take a Ruger.
  4. Double D

    Double D Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jul 16, 2009
    North Florida
    Hopefully, you will e mail them and tell them how you repaired the gun that two of their pistol techs couldnt repair and then proceed to tell them why you will be making a different choice on your next purchase.
  5. Zane71464

    Zane71464 Well-Known Member

    Aug 1, 2009
    Ohio NRA Member
    I'm a big S&W fan and owner of several of their firearms, but a BIG + 1 with what DD said!
  6. Brass Tacks

    Brass Tacks New Member

    Jan 9, 2012
    NW Arkansas
    it won't be an email, I will send an old fashion letter addressed the the President of S&W.
  7. Hammerslagger

    Hammerslagger New Member

    Jul 30, 2009
    S&W has been having some "off and on" quality problems that go back to the 1970's, but especially in the last 10 years. Now, from the description of "Bass Tacks" it looks like they have engineering, design, and technician problems as well.

    I am not familiar with the specific S&W product described in this thread; but I am familiar with a RF firing pin design that seems to be described here. Working from memory, SAMMI spec for .22 LR is a rim thickness of 0.039" to 0.042". Headspace for a fixed breech arm (like a bolt action, falling block, break open, etc.) is 0.043" to 0.051", tighter being better for accuracy. I would imagine that straight blowback actions start at, at least 0.045" for safety reasons in allowing for compression wear. The firing pin obviously needs to be able to deliver about 0.020" of crush for reliable percussion ignition. {This still leaves about 0.020" clearance from the chamber edge.} Base on "BT's" description he was likely getting a lot less than 0.010" crush until he modified his gun's FP to deliver an additional 0.010" of potential crush, which seems to have fixed his problem. S&W would appear to have a problem in not recognizing an obvious problem that a customer had to solve for them.

    It seems that many of their highly skilled long term (old timer) employees have retired including Ron B. in charge of quality control, and Don D. in customer service, who was actually a builder before transferring to CS. IMO their retirement was a big loss to S&W and its customers.

    Hopefully, someone at S&W has an opportunity to read this thread, and do something about their problems, before S&W quality becomes no more highly regarded than that of Taurus, which has improved somewhat over recent years.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2012
  8. 25yretcoastie

    25yretcoastie Member

    Aug 27, 2011
    Fort Pierce Fl
    I bought my wife the same pistol about the same time. Since then we have put over 500 rds thru it with never a miss.
  9. Brass Tacks

    Brass Tacks New Member

    Jan 9, 2012
    NW Arkansas
    this being a low end, mass produced firearm things like this are going to happen. This situation might just be a fluke, stuff happens. I figure S&W wants the techs to "get'em in and get'em out" so a few rounds were loaded in the mag, they all fired, "there's nothing wrong here", NEXT! maybe not, I don't know. But someone sure dropped the ball here when this simple, old, country boy diagnosed the problem and corrected it with a few file strokes.

    I'm hoping that soon the wife will let me shoot it.
  10. Ledslnger

    Ledslnger New Member

    Dec 12, 2011

    I have heard the same stuff. Lots of people moving to Ruger, especially for the big bores. I know one guy that said his .44 mag Smith was a total POS, that couldn't even hold the grip of his new Ruger which he got after he ditched the Smith. Don't have a Ruger pistol or a Smith, Browning & Sig for me at the moment so I am not bashing because I am a huge Ruger fan. I do love their rifles though.
  11. Charles Christensen

    Charles Christensen New Member

    Nov 13, 2011
    I put a thread in the center-fire forum about a TOTAL failure to feed with a new M&P 9C. Like you, I managed to fix it myself but S&W has never responded to my photos and full report about the situation so I still have no idea as to how that gun got out of the factory. Someone must be embarrassed by it.
  12. Brass Tacks

    Brass Tacks New Member

    Jan 9, 2012
    NW Arkansas
    the only time S&W ever responded to an email it was to tell me they had magazines for the M&P22 in stock when in reality they didn't!

    we went to the range yesterday and the wife put 300 rounds thru it without a stoppage. so now I would have to say it's a fine firearm, accurate and functional. Heaven help me if anything else goes wrong
  13. ozo

    ozo Well-Known Member

    Jan 20, 2011
    Nashville TN
    All that said...
    I have a [one week old] Pro Series in S&W for repairs at this time.
    So far, so good.
    [Front sight rocks forward/rearward,barrel is pitted, screws are
    'buggered, excessive lead build-up on cylinder and top inside frame strap
    after 100 rounds]
    Even received a letter from them yesterday with a work order number......
    We shall see...........
  14. Charles Christensen

    Charles Christensen New Member

    Nov 13, 2011
    I sent my report complete with pictures to S&W by e-mail and snail-mail so there would be no excuses. After a couple of months I sent the same to GUNS&AMMO magazine.
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