I’ve had my Smith and Wesson 629 for at least 5 years now… and sometime about 4½ years ago, it started developing this problem where the thumbpiece would get jammed, preventing the cylinder from being opened. I had taken it to the pawn shop I bought it from soon after this problem happened. Within a few weeks I got the gun back, and they really hadn’t done shit to it. It didn’t stop me from shooting it (though, perhaps it should’ve).
When I got to New Mexico and started shooting there (after a 2 year shooting hiatus), that gun had the same problem. It got to the point where I’d shoot it and count out the 6 shots (so I knew all the rounds were spent). When it came time to open the cylinder, I’d point the barrel skyward (careful not to point it at myself or others) and using a rock or car bumper (or something of the like), I would wedge the thumbpiece against it and pretty much use my weight to force the jammed thumbpiece forward to open up the cylinder and reload it. Trust me, it wasn’t too much fun (or safe, probably) doing it that way.
On my way out the door (never to return) from Clovis, I finally got fed up enough to call up Smith and Wesson about it and look into getting it fixed. The nice thing is that there’s a life-time warranty for the gun, so they paid for the repair and shipping both ways. Since, like I said before, I was soon moving, I decided to hold off on sending in the gun (because I probably wouldn’t have the same address when they shipped it back).
Well, once we finally picked out a house and moved into Savannah, I took the gun from her storage in my car (luckily I had put the shipping label with it so as not to lose it), packaged it up and sent it in to Smith and Wesson. I was like a kid at Christmas to see the UPS dude show up today with a package from Smith and Wesson. I opened up my long-lost “present” and examined it, along with the letter from Smith and Wesson:
The following characteristics have been examined and adjusted to our standards:
- Repaired: Replaced Center Pin
- Repaired: Replaced Thumbpiece Nut
- Repaired: Replaced Thumbpiece
The cylinder seems to open and close just fine for now. I have yet to give it the ultimate test though: to shoot it and then try to open it. I can only hope for better results than what the pawn shop gave many years ago. Perhaps I will have to make it a point to hit up a range in the next week or two before I’m off again on another adventure.
For now, though, I can sleep soundly while I’m away from home knowing that Pam has a working S&W 44 Revolver by her side to protect her… well, maybe not; Hell would freeze over before she would shoot that gun. So thank God for ADT, I guess, to allow me to sleep soundly while I’m away.