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S&W Model 41 Bolt questions

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Jerry Keefer
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Sa-tevp
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Post by Sa-tevp 2/8/2015, 7:48 pm

Having recently added a used 1978/79 S&W Model 41 to my target pistol collection, upon tear-down, cleaning and examination I have a few questions for the community.

The extractor hits the cartridge case a good distance up from the rim with the stock extractor. Is it a common procedure to fill and make a new pocket in the right side of the bolt to move the extractor tip to the junction of the rim and case of the cartridge for better ejection? (Middle arrow on attached picture) Did S&W have problems with extractor tolerances during production?

The headspace on the bolt seems very deep. Is it common to machine it to a shallower headspace for target ammunition? (Right arrow)

The bolt in my pistol and in some pictures of slides I have found in other forums shows the bolt face extended from the surrounding slide. Is this common or a production anomaly from drilling the bolt pin hole without having the bolt flush with the slide? (Left arrow)
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Post by Axehandle 2/9/2015, 6:17 am

The documentation that came with my Clark barrels talked about the alignment of the bolt and the barrel.  My plan is to send my back-up M41 to KC for his magic just to make sure..

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Post by Jerry Keefer 2/9/2015, 10:23 am

Sa-tevp wrote:The extractor
The headspace on the bolt seems very deep.
The bolt in my pistol and in some pictures of slides I have found in other forums shows the bolt face extended from the surrounding slide. Is this common or a production anomaly from drilling the bolt pin hole without having the bolt flush with the slide? (Left arrow)

Extractors: It has a job to preform..Whether it's a 41, a Pardini or 1911.. Moving the extractor back is almost always required . The old trick on 41 's is to bend it, which locates the hook closer to the rim..Not exactly precise, and causes the hook to dig into the case. The hole in the breech block is what I use.. Remove metal from the rear of the extractor right angle "dog leg" which fits in to the hole, and tig a small dot on the front.. Adjust this process to get the desired position of the hook.
Headspace is always on the high side on production pistols... I showed a 41 in yesterdays picture at .050.  When shooting Eley, this block would have .009 headspace. Too much. Grind it off to aleast .043 which is a good basic depth.  
The step shoulder on the top of the breechblock should support and absorb the  repetitive impact forces.. If the pin is subjected to these forces it will break..Nearly all breechblocks extend beyond the slide face.. After many thousands of rounds, the constant impact imprints the barrel face, but is usually not a problem.
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Post by Sa-tevp 2/9/2015, 10:54 am

Thanks Jerry.

I figured if I could be specific on the questions I could elicit some answers. I just measured the step shoulder on the top of the breechblock to the slide at 0.004" gap. Looks like this pistol needs to see a BE gunsmith with the proper fixtures and tools. While researching the Model 41 I saw reports of few broken bolt pins on the Rimfirecentral and S&W forums.

All-in-all the Model 41 reminds me of comments about Jaguar XKE cars in the 1960's, that it was a $5000 car that would have been a great $6500 car if they had made them well. I plan to stick with smoothing out the M41 since I like the trigger, the balance with the 5.5" heavy barrel and the recoil.

Stephen
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Post by Jerry Keefer 2/9/2015, 2:19 pm

I really like Jaguars..wish I could buy a new one for $6500..SmileSmile
"edited for clarity" Smile


Last edited by Jerry Keefer on 2/9/2015, 4:10 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by LenV 2/9/2015, 3:01 pm

Be carefull of what you ask for. lol!

S&W Model 41 Bolt questions 13237780_4X
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Post by kwixdraw 2/10/2015, 7:19 am

Mark IIs can be fun.
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Post by jerry lehrer 2/19/2015, 5:47 pm

Quikdraw,

Yes, Mk II Jags can be fun, if you are a masochist!

Jerry

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Post by Jerry Keefer 4/15/2015, 11:43 am

This is a rather new 41. The factory issues are many. I thought I would show some of the problems, and remedies that the 41 can benefit from. I think it is a great platform for 22 bullseye. BUT like anything mass produced in a factory, it will often need corrective measures. Some areas very important to function..
Below is a firing pin with TWO return springs.. Two is better than one, right??? Evidently the factory worker thought so.. Actually probably picked up one, but two had gloved together, and went unnoticed.
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1873_zpsbi5inpwa
This  gun had major extraction, ejection problems.. The 22 rim is small, and it does not take much misalignment of the ejector to cause failures.  Here the ejector pocket in the slide is milled out to provide more upward travel.
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1874_zpsqirc9fhr
The ejector often just rests on top of the magazine, and is short of making full contact with the case.. Here I have placed a small dot of tig on the bottom of the ejector bar, raising it higher into the new pocket we machined.. This weld is then faced off to place the ejector in full contact with the case..
I can't say enough about the effectiveness of the adjustment.
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1889_zpss68uv49i
Close observation shows displacement of metal.. It is being caused be the slide dragging on the magazine disconnect safety.. Friction of any and all kinds is a killer for automatic weapons..
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1891_zps9uiq7uzz
Here the offending area of the safety has been dressed off.
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1892_zpsi8zweh6l
Highly polished smooth and friction reduced
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1882_zps0h8ljzgu
The firing pin tip, shows a significant burr. This is removed and all edges smoothed and polished.  As the firing pin attempts to displace the brass, the brass must be able to 'flow' or move out of the way and allow the pin to penetrate.
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1876_zpsj2f51ecp
The shaded part of the firing pin is a step machined on the tip. The outer edge of the rim will collapse upon itself: double up: stack solid and prevent the pin from penetrating any deeper.  This relief overcomes that and allows the pin to continue to penetrate a few thousands more.
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1877_zpsvdft96iv
Breech block truing and head space adjusted, along with firing pin protrusion.
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1875_zpstj5ka3yq
The trigger transfer bar is being machine to allow better re rest and slightly more pre travel.
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1893_zpskuswydno
Factory hammer.. I guess a portion of a  half cock notch is better than none..Smile
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1886_zpskyeoaatt
New hammer and strut, polished and ready to go.
S&W Model 41 Bolt questions IMG_1890_zpsjnfvtvhl
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Post by Dr.Don 4/15/2015, 5:13 pm

Wow Jerry.  This gun was a disaster.  Some of those parts should have never made it into the assembly bins.
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Post by Sa-tevp 4/17/2015, 5:28 pm

Jerry,
Thanks for posting the pictures.

A friend has a late 1980's/early 1990's model and we were surprised comparing the insides of the two pistols. His has many cast parts and several frame dimensions are different, such as in the hammer area.
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