The strange story of a stuck cylinder of my almost new Ruger Vaquero

Discussion in 'Centerfire Pistols & Revolvers' started by The Count, Oct 15, 2010.

  1. The Count

    The Count New Member

    May 29, 2010
    the practically new 5" SS ruger vaquero experienced a strange problem at the range the other day. after firing about 14 shots without problems the cylinder got 'stuck'. it would not advance when pulling back the hammer. i managed to take out the long pin as i thought i would just do a field strip and remove the cylinder but the cylinder will not come out nor rotate. i jiggled the gun for half an hour trying to get the cylinder loose, including pulling the hammer back a bit but nothing helped. there are 5 live rounds in the gun at this point. not really a good thing. and the pin will not go back in at this point either. taking a close look with a magnifying glass and a very strong light i saw that none of the rounds are neither stuck in the barrel nor were the case heads jamming somewhere.

    this morning i spoke to a guy from the ruger cs department who said he cant understand why the cylinder will not come out. but one cannot ship a loaded gun and i have to submerge the cylinder in wd40 for a whole week to make sure the rounds go dead. so i actually did this (took off the grips though).

    later i got a call from another guy from ruger who seemed to be more senior/a head tech guy. he listed to my story and then suggested i whack the side of the cylinder with a rubber hammer a couple times. he said nothing would fire as long as the hammer was all the way down. and low and behold, after 3 good hits the cylinder came out. i got another call from ruger and after confirming the bullets were out of the gun they set up a UPS pickup for monday to take a close look of what might be the issue at the factory. i must say, pretty impressive customer service. anybody here willing to guess what the problem might be/was?
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2010
  2. Zane71464

    Zane71464 Well-Known Member

    Aug 1, 2009
    Ohio NRA Member
    Ive never heard of that happening, but a guess would be with the cylinder latch
    and the transfer bar not in sync in one fashion or another?

  3. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

    Feb 26, 2007
    Heart Of Texas
    I have had it happen on a single six. and Zane is very close to the problem, sometimes the hammer will bind in a certain spot where the locking bolt/hammer/trigger/transfer bar all begin to move into position to fire the next round. It only happens when trying to thumb the revolver one handed because you tend to slightly depress the trigger to gain leverage necessary to cock the weapon, thus binding if you hold your tongue just right. Its a rare mishap and one i have only ever seen happen to transfer bar revolvers. The good ol fashioned 4 click singles arent as easy to lock up and when they do its because something broke...
  4. gdmoody

    gdmoody Moderator Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2007
    Athens, Georgia
    Something like this happened with my Ruger LCR last week at the range, but the cylinder would turn but just would not open. I played around with it for a few minutes until I got disgusted with it and laid it aside and continued shooting with another gun. I thought about it for a while and decided I would look at it again.

    I don't know all the technical terms but, what had happened was the ejector rod had been unscrewing as I was shooting and had caused it to press against the frame so hard that it would not open. When I realized this, I just screwed it down enough to open the cylinder and then tightened it properly.
  5. Mosin_Nagant_Fan

    Mosin_Nagant_Fan Active Member

    Jan 18, 2007
    Montgomery, AL
    Sounded like a binding problem that loosened from some combination of the WD40 and the hammer blows.
  6. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

    Dec 6, 2009
    On the first gun, I suspect the firing pin was stuck in a primer and either was binding so it couldn't retract or the transfer bar was jamming it and stopping it from coming back.

  7. MrZoom

    MrZoom New Member

    Oct 20, 2010
    I have a 50th anniversary Blackhawk with a very similar problem. Stuck cylinder, hammer won't turn it, can't remove it. In my case, it is poor quality control on my reloads... one of the primers was not seated deeply enough, so it is protruding and preventing the cylinder from turning. I'm dropping it off with my local gunsmith on Friday.
  8. The Count

    The Count New Member

    May 29, 2010
    did you try to remove that long pin that secures the cylinder? and if yes, could you wiggle the cylinder back and forth just a tad? when you open the gate can you see the gate latch retreating? the ruger guy said that if the pin is out and the cylinder latch retracts when the gate is open there is nothing actually holding the cylinder in place. of course its still stuck, so go figure. but a couple hits with a rubber hammer did get the damn thing out. in your particular case i am pretty sure the gunsmith will do the same, but if the round goes off you wont be the one getting the shrapnel. high primers are tricky.
  9. johnlives4christ

    johnlives4christ Former Guest

    Apr 28, 2008
    if the hammer plunger binds up it will cause the symptoms you described count
  10. The Count

    The Count New Member

    May 29, 2010
    OK guys, just got the gun back from Ruger. It says:

    CYLINDER RATCHET...... Repaired
    CYLINDER LATCH...........Replaced

    Glad they fixed it, not sure what those parts really are.... :)
  11. Big Shrek

    Big Shrek Well-Known Member

    Nov 10, 2009
    NorthWest Florida
    Now, go trade it in for something better.

    I went thru hades with my pair of Vaquero' they've been traded in, and I don't have ANY timing issues, nothing. Get a Colt ;)

    Ruger's quality has been going to hades since around 1995, dunno what happened then, but it's really showing nowadays.
  12. al45lc

    al45lc Active Member

    Mar 8, 2010
    colorful colorado
    As though Colt has never had issues? I can't say enough about Colt's poor service to several problems I've had through the years with their products, as well as Ruger.
    Warranty or not, I've given up on both companies "service departments".
  13. JLA

    JLA Well-Known Member

    Feb 26, 2007
    Heart Of Texas
    screw em both... get a smith and wesson;)
  14. Zane71464

    Zane71464 Well-Known Member

    Aug 1, 2009
    Ohio NRA Member
    +1 on that brother!;)
  15. grampawmike

    grampawmike New Member

    May 23, 2010
    Mojave Desert, CA
    Just as JLA and Zane said. To avoid any confusion I enclose a definition (by photo) of a true revolver. JMHO Mike

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