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Greetings to All,

I own a number of Colt firearms including revolvers and semi-autos (circa 1985-2020), and I've never really experienced any serious problems with any of them, but in recent months I've purchased two (2) new King Cobra's (2018-2019) and one (1) new Python (2020), ALL of which are demonstrating the same troubling and recurring problem . . . an excessively sticky cylinder release latch. Every one of those three (3) firearms (the latter of which was quite expensive in my world!), suffers from the exact same problem, namely, that the latch cannot be actuated rearward to release the cylinder without considerable resistance. In fact, for the most part, to release the cylinder, the latch must be forcibly coaxed rearward, by wedging a finger between the cylinder and the latch itself.

Now, that said, I've thoroughly researched this topic on-line, I've spoken to several licensed gunsmiths about it, I've even tried to contact Colt directly, but they (Colt) have no published e-mail contact, they have no voicemail capability on their phone line, and half the time (including this entire week!), their phone greeting states that they're closed for maintenance or upgrades, yada-yada-yada. In any case, the widely proposed solution (here on the Colt Forum and elsewhere), is invariably cited to be a "thorough cleaning". However, this is clearly NOT the solution to this problem, because I have meticulously and repeatedly cleaned all three of these revolvers to the point of absurdity! I've cleaned them, degreased them, re-oiled them, I've inspected them for burrs and/or other flaws in the machining, and yet, they all continue to misbehave in this very same way.

In closing, I am admittedly no gunsmith, and I am also, admittedly, a 'casual' shooter at-best (maybe a 100-200 rounds total per month). But the fact is, none of my far cheaper Ruger revolvers behave like this (e.g., SP-101 and GP-101), nor does my Smith & Wesson (686). So, can any of the experienced owners of Colt revolvers here shed some light on this issue for me? Was/is this just a known manufacturer's defect? An inferior design flaw across all models of Colt revolvers? Color me particular, but I'm deeply frustrated, and frankly, for $1,500 retail (as was the case with this 4.25" Python), I would have expected far better from Colt.

Anyway, thanks for listening, and thanks to all who choose to respond.
 

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The only times I've ever experienced what you describe was due to lube or grease dried and caked restricting its movement. Usually squirting some cleaner in there took care of it but sometimes it took removing the side plate to clean it. It's not a design flaw but a maintenance issue.

Try a Smith & Wesson and if you don't keep the cylinder release threaded bolt tight it can fall out and allow the cylinder release itself to drop off and disappear from the face of the earth.

Neither are design flaws...just peculiarities of each design.
 

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If understand your question correctly, are your described cylinder release problems in the new DA revolvers Colt recently started producing -after a 2 decade hiatus- an intrinsic ,long term ,Colt DA revolver issue.??

In short, no.

The recent new production DA revolvers are new designs, new production and assembly items, their characteristics are their own."apples vs. oranges" that should not be lumped together.

Cylinder release issues in older Colt DA's are typically dried grease/lube/oil gunk related and easily remedied.As Snidely has noted.
 

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Greetings to All,

I own a number of Colt firearms including revolvers and semi-autos (circa 1985-2020), and I've never really experienced any serious problems with any of them, but in recent months I've purchased two (2) new King Cobra's (2018-2019) and one (1) new Python (2020), ALL of which are demonstrating the same troubling and recurring problem . . . an excessively sticky cylinder release latch. Every one of those three (3) firearms (the latter of which was quite expensive in my world!), suffers from the exact same problem, namely, that the latch cannot be actuated rearward to release the cylinder without considerable resistance. In fact, for the most part, to release the cylinder, the latch must be forcibly coaxed rearward, by wedging a finger between the cylinder and the latch itself.

Now, that said, I've thoroughly researched this topic on-line, I've spoken to several licensed gunsmiths about it, I've even tried to contact Colt directly, but they (Colt) have no published e-mail contact, they have no voicemail capability on their phone line, and half the time (including this entire week!), their phone greeting states that they're closed for maintenance or upgrades, yada-yada-yada. In any case, the widely proposed solution (here on the Colt Forum and elsewhere), is invariably cited to be a "thorough cleaning". However, this is clearly NOT the solution to this problem, because I have meticulously and repeatedly cleaned all three of these revolvers to the point of absurdity! I've cleaned them, degreased them, re-oiled them, I've inspected them for burrs and/or other flaws in the machining, and yet, they all continue to misbehave in this very same way.

In closing, I am admittedly no gunsmith, and I am also, admittedly, a 'casual' shooter at-best (maybe a 100-200 rounds total per month). But the fact is, none of my far cheaper Ruger revolvers behave like this (e.g., SP-101 and GP-101), nor does my Smith & Wesson (686). So, can any of the experienced owners of Colt revolvers here shed some light on this issue for me? Was/is this just a known manufacturer's defect? An inferior design flaw across all models of Colt revolvers? Color me particular, but I'm deeply frustrated, and frankly, for $1,500 retail (as was the case with this 4.25" Python), I would have expected far better from Colt.

Anyway, thanks for listening, and thanks to all who choose to respond.
I've had this issue with my 2020 Python. When I received it in March I field stripped and cleaned before running it. I noticed that the release latch was a bear to move reward to release the cylinder. I repeatedly applied Balistol and kept working the latch. Must have spent a good twenty minutes before it started to feel smoother to operate. Its not 100% but better than it was out of the box. Next step may be taking it down and using a stone to smooth it more.
 

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It's not a design flaw. Because if it was, you'd be hearing about it from each and every owner, but we don't. Colt releases have been a pull type for about 125 years, compared to S&W and Ruger that open a different way. Once in a while you'll hear about this, and usually oil, grease, or actuating it a bunch smooths it up.

I've had a cylinder latch that was tight to close once, on an ancient New Service from about 1916. I looked at the lock plug at the back of the frame, and it was slightly burred. I used a jewelers file and honed the burrs off, and fixed it. That is the place you want to make sure to put a little grease on, as well as it's adjacent hole in the cylinder rear.
 

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Gentlemen! Thank you for your responses and for the opinions offered.

Let me start by clarifying a few things that I may or not have made clear in my original post:

1) The Python is "brand new" (manufactured by Colt in June of 2020). It hasn't had more than 6-10 rounds fired it through it yet, and presumably, it couldn't possibly be gunked-up enough to have caused this issue.

2) The cylinder release latches in my two King Cobras behave strikingly similarly, and those two revolvers (circa 2018-2019), have been fired extensively, cleaned extensively and worn extensively ("worn" meaning their latches have been actuated hundreds and hundreds of times).

And lastly, I have the tools and guidance (YouTube videos) necessary to carefully disassemble this Python for a serious in-depth cleaning, but I'll admit to being somewhat reluctant to do so, for fear of damaging something. The only alternative I can see is to send it to Colt, which is troubling to me for two reasons:

1) Why should a firearm this "new" require such drastic measures, and

2) If Colt couldn't get it right when they first manufactured it, why should I believe that they'd get it right a second time or a third time, etc.?

Thanks again for all of your responses. It's helpful to hear from folks who know abiut this issue or who have actually experienced it.
 

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If there is a problem...and you don't let Colt know about it...how will they institute a change in assembly or inspections otherwise? If it's a one of a kind issue they can fix it...if it's endemic to their procedures they can't fix what they don't know about without feedback.

It might be as simple as requiring some lubrication and a break-in period. It could also be as already mentioned a burr which only needs a little judicious filing. Regardless of the cause it will likely be a very minor repair or adjustment that needs done. The design is well proven so whatever is the cause is minor.
 

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I have a question: why did someone start this post with user name "Voyager" with no posts, but then "Iwas" is responding that he's "clarifying" his original post? Also a new member with no posts until now.

But you(s) are asking why would 3 new Colts built over a 3 year period have the same problem. Logically, it's either
A) a known issue and lots of people will be reporting that, or
B) you have incredibly bad luck to have received the 3 errors per million that Six Sigma expects in any manufacturing.

Then you ask how you can trust Colt to fix it. That is contingent on if the above is because of A) or B). If A) some would not trust them. If B), they can certainly fix it.
 

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Great question! Answer: An inexplicable and unresolved issue with the board moderators/administrators.

Back Story: 'Voyager' and 'Iwas' are both me, but yesterday afternoon, when I posted under my original 3-year old User name (Voyager), none of my postings appeared for over 12-hours, and I was getting messages saying that the existing account (which is and has always been in good standing), needed "approval" by the [email protected]#%&?

This morning, the original posting still wasn't posted or visible, and so, out of frustration, I created another User name, just this morning, in order to get the danged thing posted!
 

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I have a question: why did someone start this post with user name "Voyager" with no posts, but then "Iwas" is responding that he's "clarifying" his original post? Also a new member with no posts until now.
Also, its important to note that under my original User name (Voyager), which has been "approved" and widely used since early 2018, I had dozens of postings. So the administrators of this board clearly have a problem somewhere, because if it showed 'zero' previous posts, that's wildly inaccurate..
 

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Ah-so, that explains it. Weird things happen in migrations.
Yeah, I can't explain it, and I can't explain why the board's moderators/administrators failed to respond to multiple messages about it. Very weird! I must have sent TEN or more messages to them about the issue yesterday, without a single response. Don't know if they're in Michigan or Canada or what, but I've personally never seen anything quite like it!

Anyway, I'll log-out as the new member 'Iwas' and try to log back in as 'Voyager' to see what happens. Hopefully, it'll let me post without such recurring delays in "approval", but don't be surprised to see me back here again as 'Iwas'. :rolleyes:
 

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I have never owned a revolver. I was 'smitten'(lol)with the new Colt Cobra. When it arrived the cylinder release was likterally a PITA to operate. It seems counter intuitive to pull rather than push but it is a Colt(?). So I released the cylinder, and then operated the release, oh maybe a hundred or more times, putting slight pressure against the body of the gun. I also used some of my RemOil. I continued to operate the release off and on for the past several weeks and after reading your post, I checked it and it was still a bit stiff but manageable. So for me the moral is stiffness prevent unintended release(?) and exercising the release works. I really enjoy this Colt!

Semper Fi

paul
 

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The most likely cause of stiff latches on new Colt's are burrs or a factory miss-fit problem, or a spring that's kinking.
Since the Mark III of 1969 Colt has used a "Z" spring to power the latch and those seem to be somewhat prone to catching and kinking if the spring is not positioned exactly at the factory.

I can suggest injecting some CLP Breakfree into the latch and side plate from both inside and outside with the cylinder open and work that in.
If that doesn't correct the problem I'd suggest that there's an issue you'd best address by send them back to Colt, unless you feel confident in attempting to repair yourself.
The latch in the new Colt's is not a complicated assembly and with the side plate off you should be able to find the problem and correct it.

As for the "backward" Colt latch, it was invented in 1889 with the Colt New Army & Navy models.
In those days the revolver was usually shot one handed in the classic dueling or Target shooting method.
By making the latch operate to the rear, this gave a position for the thumb to be placed in a high hold, and also prevented the latch from unlocking in recoil.
In the 1920's the latch was checkered to give an even better grip for the thumb.

In that, it's the S&W that operates "backward", and that's why you have to be careful with a high thumb hold with a S&W both to prevent accidental unlocking of the cylinder and to prevent chewing up your thumb.
 

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Good history. I've always liked the Colt "pull" latch better than the S&W "push". It's like some door knobs that open one way, others the other...you just have to get used to it. There is no "intuitive" way to move a door knob or a light switch or a lever on a machine.
 

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It's a learned response...muscle memory. On a Colt you pull backwards...on a S&W you push it forward...on a Ruger you push the button in...on a Dan Wesson you push up on a release in front of the cylinder...on an older Charter Arms you either pull the release back like a Smith or pull the ejector rod forward. And that's just revolvers.

A lot to get used to if you other makes.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I have never owned a revolver. I was 'smitten'(lol)with the new Colt Cobra. When it arrived the cylinder release was likterally a PITA to operate. It seems counter intuitive to pull rather than push but it is a Colt(?). So I released the cylinder, and then operated the release, oh maybe a hundred or more times, putting slight pressure against the body of the gun. I also used some of my RemOil. I continued to operate the release off and on for the past several weeks and after reading your post, I checked it and it was still a bit stiff but manageable. So for me the moral is stiffness prevent unintended release(?) and exercising the release works. I really enjoy this Colt!

Semper Fi

paul
Thanks Paul,

I'm sorry to hear that your new Cobra behaves similarly, and frankly, it reinforces the notion that this problem is more common than others might think, because as I've said, my new Python demonstrates it, as do both of my relatively new King Cobra's, and, there are numerous other reports by others out there on this forum and elsewhere. My point being, its not a rare anomaly or something conjured up by inexperienced owners. Its there, its real, and it fairly widespread.

Your post also helps to highlight the dilemma of my available choices in resolving it. Short of sending back a brand new revolver to the fine folks who manufactured it with said flaw, I can "exercise" the living the daylights out of it, by actuating the latch countless times, with lube and more lube, hoping that it'll slowly improve by wearing down any rough edges inside of it, or, I can risk damaging it or fouling something up by taking off the side-plate and removing (to clean or align) other fragile, but key internal components.

I guess I'll try the simplest approach first, and start manipulating the little bugger, back and forth for a few days, to see if that helps at all. Otherwise, I think it'll be time to carefully revisit and review the disassembly videos on YouTube, and gingerly disassemble it, at least to the point of removing and inspecting the latch and its components. This will just have to be my approach, because I've seen postings from other owners who went to the trouble of sending their revolvers back to Colt for the very same problem, only to have it returned (after 6-8 weeks!), completely unfixed, un-repaired and un-changed, and that simply will NOT work for me!
 

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You're adding 2+2 to get 5. 12,000 Cobras and Pythons made the past 3 years and one person replying his latch was stiff too doesn't make a trend. We don't say it's a common problem. We don't say it's a fragile part. We don't say any proverbial person with a similar latch problem has had it sent back to Colt but had it returned completely unrepaired. You are saying all that.

You now have your choices. You can go execute one of them. I recommend this thread be closed. But who am I?
 

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Discussion Starter #20
The most likely cause of stiff latches on new Colt's are burrs or a factory miss-fit problem, or a spring that's kinking.
Since the Mark III of 1969 Colt has used a "Z" spring to power the latch and those seem to be somewhat prone to catching and kinking if the spring is not positioned exactly at the factory.

I can suggest injecting some CLP Breakfree into the latch and side plate from both inside and outside with the cylinder open and work that in.
If that doesn't correct the problem I'd suggest that there's an issue you'd best address by send them back to Colt, unless you feel confident in attempting to repair yourself.
The latch in the new Colt's is not a complicated assembly and with the side plate off you should be able to find the problem and correct it.

As for the "backward" Colt latch, it was invented in 1889 with the Colt New Army & Navy models.
In those days the revolver was usually shot one handed in the classic dueling or Target shooting method.
By making the latch operate to the rear, this gave a position for the thumb to be placed in a high hold, and also prevented the latch from unlocking in recoil.
In the 1920's the latch was checkered to give an even better grip for the thumb.

In that, it's the S&W that operates "backward", and that's why you have to be careful with a high thumb hold with a S&W both to prevent accidental unlocking of the cylinder and to prevent chewing up your thumb.
DFaris!

Thanx for the detailed and highly informative post. I'll definitely try every option suggested by others here including yours (the CLP Breakfree), because I fundamentally do not want to open this thing up. I've disassembled a few different revolvers and semi-autos over the years, but the Python is notably more intricate in several key ways (i.e., more parts, more interactions, etc.).

Anyway, I'd like to ask you for a bit of clarification on the so-called "Z" spring. Others here on the Colt Forum and elsewhere have alluded to a "nylon sleeve or bushing" associated with the latch, but after some research, it sounds like that might have been a component in older (original issue) Pythons, and not the newer ones. I say this because I have a parts diagram for the Python, downloaded from here or somewhere else on-line (see attached), and presumably, its for the newer (reissued) Pythons like mine. It shows no such nylon sleeve or bushing associated with the latch. However, it also shows the latch spring, and although the image is quite small to the eye, it doesn't appear to be "Z" shaped? Instead, it appears to be a tiny, but standard (cylindrically-shaped) spring. Could you elaborate on your experience in this regard? In other words, if I disassemble this thing, am I likely to encounter a Z spring (rather than a standard spring), and is a replacement of that spring likely to be available to me from Colt, Brownells, or other suppliers?

Thanks again!
 

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