4 Smith and Wesson 317 Problems: Expert Solutions Inside

The Smith and Wesson 317 has been enlightening, revealing its strengths and challenges. While reliable, this solid piece of craftsmanship faces some common issues that can affect performance.

Cylinder locking and jamming issues are frequent concerns due to debris or inadequate maintenance. Another recurring issue is the loose rear sight and occasional misfires.

By understanding and addressing these common issues, owners can ensure their revolver remains a dependable companion for years.

Let’s delve into some common problems this revolver encounters and explore practical solutions to keep it in tip-top shape.

4 ProblemsWith Their Quick Solution
Cylinder Locking UpRegularly clean and oil the ejector rod and cylinder latch
Jamming IssueSwitch ammo, clean and lubricate chambers regularly.
Loose Rear SightTighten the screw and apply thread locker.
Misfiring IssueSwitch to reliable ammo and clean the firing pin.
Smith and Wesson 317 Problems
Smith and Wesson 317 Problems

Smith and Wesson 317 Problems With Their Practical Solution:

1. Cylinder Locking Up:

One of the most annoying issues I’ve encountered is the cylinder locking up during firing.

This can be particularly frustrating at the range, especially when you need to rotate the cylinder for subsequent shots.

The locking issue disrupts the consistency of your firing experience and affects aiming precision. When the cylinder fails to rotate smoothly, it can lead to missed shots and a frustrating experience.


This problem has happened to me several times, and I’ve learned more about how to fix it each time.

After ensuring the revolver is unloaded and safe, I focus on the cylinder and its components. Grime and build-up in the ejector rod and cylinder latch can cause friction, leading to lock-ups.

To fix this, I carefully clean these areas and apply a light coat of oil to reduce friction.

Remembering regular maintenance schedules is crucial. Even if the revolver isn’t used frequently, periodic cleaning and oil application keep it in optimal condition.

This prevents rotating lock-ups and ensures overall firearms safety and longevity.

2. Jamming Issue:

Moving on to the next issue: the jamming problem. This came as quite a surprise and a significant letdown.

Imagine focusing on your target, pulling the trigger, and suddenly the cylinder jams. This has happened to me several times, and it was highly frustrating each time.

Jamming in any firearm is a common problem, and the Smith and Wesson 317 is no exception.

The issue often arises from debris or dirt getting into the action, preventing the cylinder from rotating smoothly. Regular cleaning and maintenance are crucial to avoid these problems.


When I took the time to figure out the culprit behind the jamming issues, it became clear that ammo was a significant factor.

  • Swapping to a different brand of .22 LR rounds made a big difference. Some rounds leave more grime and residue in the chambers and cylinder, leading to frequent jamming.
  • Regular cleaning and lubrication are essential. After a session at the range, I thoroughly cleaned and lubricated my revolver, focusing on the chambers and cylinder.
  • Always unload the firearm before cleaning and follow safety protocols.

Maintaining clean and lubricated chambers and cylinders can minimize jamming issues and enjoy a more consistent shooting experience with your Smith and Wesson 317.

3. Loose Rear Sight:

Next up on the list of issues is the loose rear sight. This problem can turn a day at the range into a frustrating situation.

When the rear sight becomes loose, it compromises precise aiming and makes the sight wobbly, which is a nightmare for any shooter. A wobbly sight messes with your accuracy and can ruin the shooting experience.

I first noticed this issue when my shots started missing their mark consistently. I carefully examined my gun, and the rear sight was loose.


To fix the loose rear sight, I grabbed a small, flat-head screwdriver and tightened the screw securing the rear sight. It’s crucial to ensure the firearm is unloaded before starting any maintenance.

For added security, applying a thread locker to the screw can ensure it doesn’t back out over time. I’ve found that a dried thread locker keeps everything secure without any issues.

This quick fix gets the Smith and Wesson 317 back in business, maintaining accuracy and reliability session after session.

Read More: Smith and Wesson R8 Problems

4. Misfiring Issue:

Last but not least, let’s talk about misfires.

There’s nothing more alarming than being in the field, ready to shoot, and instead of a bang, you hear a click. Misfires disrupt your rhythm and can be a significant setback.

I’ve experienced this issue several times, and it’s always felt like a letdown.

When a round fails to fire, it can be due to various factors, including faulty ammunition or an issue with the firing mechanism. It’s crucial to build awareness of these potential problems.


To resolve the issue of misfires:

  • I first checked the ammo I was using. Faulty ammunition is a significant cause of misfires, so switching to a more reliable brand often sorted half the problem.
  • Next, I inspected the firing pin and cleaned it thoroughly to ensure no obstruction or dirt was causing issues. A clean firing pin is crucial for consistent firing.

In my experience, taking these steps can mitigate misfiring issues and enhance the overall reliability of your Smith and Wesson 317 during shooting sessions.

My Final Conclusion:

In my experience with the Smith and Wesson 317, this product is a perfect firearm for its intended use. It’s exceptionally lightweight and easy to carry, making it ideal for various shooting scenarios.

However, like any product, it has its challenges. Issues such as cylinder locking, jamming, wobbly rear sight, and occasional misfire can arise.

The solutions to these issues often involve thorough cleaning, using specific oils, changing ammunition, or adjusting hardware.

Despite these minor issues, with proper care and maintenance, the Smith and Wesson 317 is an excellent addition to any shooting kit.

Knowing how to address each problem leaves me informed, safe, and happy during my shooting experiences.

My Friends Feedback:

My friends have provided valuable feedback on the Smith and Wesson 317, highlighting several problems they have encountered.

One common issue is cylinder locking up, often due to dirt under the ejector star. This dirt creates an unsupported gap, raising the pressure and causing the cylinder to lock. To resolve this, they recommend using a bore snake at the range to keep the chambers free of powder residue.

Another problem they mentioned is misfires due to unfired rounds getting jammed backwards from the recoil. They found that switching to high-quality rounds like CCI mini-mags, which are clean, burning and accurate, reduces this issue.

One friend prefers standard velocity rounds for their reliability and recommends avoiding bulk ammunition.

Additionally, they noted that the Smith and Wesson 317’s lightweight design can cause the barrel to feel harsh when firing high-energy rounds. Routine cleaning with Hoppe’s #9 helps maintain performance, but one friend had to send him in for service due to a peeling muzzle.

Despite these challenges, they find the Smith and Wesson 317 excellent for camping and hiking, appreciating its compact size and reliability for dispatching small threats.

My friends also advised new Smith and Wesson 317-3 Kit Gun owners. They suggest regularly checking for play in the extractor star and being aware of potential casing issues that can bubble and raise friction.

They also recommend testing different types of .22LR rounds to find what works best for your specific firearm, and they emphasize the importance of customer service in addressing any initial QC problems.

Overall, their experiences highlight that while the Smith and Wesson 317 has some drawbacks, proper maintenance and choosing the correct ammunition can significantly improve its performance.

Smith and Wesson 317 Problems
Smith and Wesson 317 Problems

Common Questions Asked About Smith and Wesson 317 Problems:

What frame is the Smith and Wesson 317?

The Smith & Wesson Model 317 is a lightweight and compact variant of the Model 17 or 617, distinguished by its aluminum frame.

How much does a Smith and Wesson 317 weigh?

It has a weight of approximately 10.8 ounces.

What does M&P stand for Smith Wesson?

The Smith & Wesson M&P (Military and Police) series is a line of semi-automatic pistols named in honor of the renowned 20th-century Smith & Wesson service revolvers. These handguns are primarily designed for military, law enforcement, and personal defense applications.

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