Ruger Forum banner

1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,723 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have a really nice 1965 O/M Blackhawk .357 mag that has been hiding in my safe for years...I have shot it on occasion and tried to keep it really nice. I've always shot jacketed or semi jacketed factory or handloads...I was cleaning it today and got to thinking I'd like to start to shoot some powder coated lead in it like my 45Colts and my 44's.

Having been down the road with chamber throats that were all over the map in the 45Colt Blackhawks and Vaqueros I thought I'd check the throats on the 357 and got a little surprise...first off I don't have gauges and am not a "technical guy"....I took a Speer jacketed hollowpoint and started around the cylinder and in 5 of 6 of the throats the bullet slipped through with almost no friction at all..just slid through the throats...then I came to the 6th hole and the bullet made it about 1/2 way into the throat and that was it...I tapped it out and visually checked for any carbon ring, etc and found nothing out of place or visible...no burrs, no machine marks, nothing but the bullet will not pass through the throat either from the front of the cylinder or coming to the throat from the rear...it's not just snug...it's tight.

Question is this: would it be reasonable to take a wood dowel of a proper diameter and use some very fine emery or crocus cloth and gently work the throat a bit? I hate to go through all the hassle of getting a tool or chasing down someone to do it with all the mailing, etc...

If I could spend whatever time it takes and just "sneak up" on the easing of the throat am I way off base or am I on the track of something that is doable?

When shooting it with both 38 specials and 357's in the past (again, none were solid lead projectiles) I had not had any major issues with fliers, pressure indications, hard extraction, etc that might indicate a tight chamber..
I just found it sort of doing a "once over" before starting to load lead.

Any thoughts appreciated...the last thing I'd do is send it to Ruger..it's unconverted and is going to stay that way....

Thanks!!
 

·
Retired Moderator & Gunsmith
Joined
·
16,807 Posts
opos, Of course the "right way" is to use a throat reamer; however, spending a hundred bucks for a reamer or paying a ransom in postage and fees to have it reamed is almost as bad. In your case, I would be tempted to make a hone and do it myself. Here's how:

Use a jigsaw or coping saw to cut a slot in a 1/4" diameter wood dowel. Slide a section of 400 grit wet or dry sandpaper coated with oil in the slot then trim the ends until the spiral shaped section of sandpaper barely fits in the throat. Put the dowel in an electric variable speed reversible drill and slowly hone the throat by putting the drill in reverse. Take the sandpaper out and measure with a 357 bullet. Repeat until the throat is the right diameter.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,723 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
opos, Of course the "right way" is to use a throat reamer; however, spending a hundred bucks for a reamer or paying a ransom in postage and fees to have it reamed is almost as bad. In your case, I would be tempted to make a hone and do it myself. Here's how:

Use a jigsaw or coping saw to cut a slot in a 1/4" diameter wood dowel. Slide a section of 400 grit wet or dry sandpaper coated with oil in the slot then trim the ends until the spiral shaped section of sandpaper barely fits in the throat. Put the dowel in an electric variable speed reversible drill and slowly hone the throat by putting the drill in reverse. Take the sandpaper out and measure with a 357 bullet. Repeat until the throat is the right diameter.
Sort of like describing a spiral staircase without using your hands....lol...Think I got it but trying to understand why I'd run the drill motor in reverse..are you saying to put the sandpaper in the slot and then "wind it in" with the drill in forward..insert it into the throat and then "reverse it"? Wouldn't that just "unwind" the coil of paper and loosen it all up? I may be over thinking this....

I might even go with a bit finer grit just to make sure I don't over do it..I do have plenty of time...Any clarification on the spiral shape and the "reverse" part of the description would be much appreciated...I'm just a bit foggy on exactly what you mean...many thanks

opos
 

·
Retired Moderator & Gunsmith
Joined
·
16,807 Posts
opos, You can't get a tight enough fit to hone in the direction of the spiral, however if you get it started and reverse the hone's direction, yup, the sandpaper will try to unwind and will get a good bite on the throat. Try it ... you'll see. Make sure you use some oil.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,723 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
opos, You can't get a tight enough fit to hone in the direction of the spiral, however if you get it started and reverse the hone's direction, yup, the sandpaper will try to unwind and will get a good bite on the throat. Try it ... you'll see. Make sure you use some oil.
Perfect...got it..many thanks...I'll be gentle and see how she goes...I think I can do this with no problem...Appreciate the tip and the direction.
opos
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,723 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Might see if anyone with a .357" throat reamer would send you one temporarily "on loan."
Talked to Fast Jack on this board yesterday..he's local and got one and knows the drill so it looks like things will work out just fine...I was sort of surprised to find 5 'perfect" throats and one that was seriously tight..guess it goes back to the early days when they punched one hole at a time and replaced dull cutters one at a time.
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top