I just got a nice, used, very good condition 10" Bull barrel in 357 mag.. Trying to put it on my frame, I cannot close the action/barrel. It seems to hit something half way to closing. I checked it against my other 10" & 14" barrel, and I cannot see anything different between them all. I can close the action/barrel without having the hinge pin in, but I cannot get the hinge pin in after that. Looking through the hinge pin hole, all looks well with the barrel stuck in and closed, but the pin will hit the side of the frame hole, and not go in. I did try to force it some (not much) and it hits a stopping point and will go no further. My frame is a new SS, made around 2001.
What's the problem here????


As noted, ink the end of the barrel to see where it is hitting on the frame.

Every so often I run across a barrel that is simply too long from the hinge pin hole back to the end of the barrel. I simply put it in the lathe and start facing off about .005" at a time from the breech end of the barrel until it will close ok, then check it with a feeler guage set to make sure there is some clearance in case the user's frame has a somewhat shorter distance from hinge pin hole to breech face than my shop frame does.

I have also seen situations where the trigger group was pulled too far up into the frame by its return spring, located inside the grip/buttstock behind the trigger guard. You can dab some grease or heavy oil on the top edge of the trigger, then install, open, and close the barrel to see if the trigger is contacting the bottom of the barrel lug and leaving a spot of oil on it.

If it is, loosen the return spring screw a turn or two, then tighten the socket head screw next to the rear tip of the hammer spring, top side of the grip/buttstock tenon. This lowers the trigger group in relation to the frame and barrel lug.

I have also seen problems where the front angled surface of the barrel lug under the hinge pin was too full and binding on the old style trigger group that pivoted at the front.

And as noted above, the extractor can project too far from the end of the barrel. Filing material off the front side of the extractor moves it forward, or you can file off the rear side also.

I don't recall having to take any material off the rear corners of the barrel lug, but that is entirely possible also, as Headstamp noted.

Good to see you guys learning to spot parts and analyze what is happening yourselves. Thanks for passing it on. I don't mean to "upstage" you, but just to affirm that you know what you are talking about and on the right track, plus adding what I can to the mix.

Keep up the good work.

Bulldog, once you identify your problem, then you have the option of fixing it yourself, sending it and the frame back to TC to fix for free, or sending it to a qualified 'smith to fix. However, very, very few gunsmiths I have run across know squat about how Contenders work and are more prone to "botchalism" than you would believe. Thus, it is important you know what is going on before handing it over to the 'smith. If he is talking out his back side, best find another 'smith.


TC barrels exist; therefore, I am.