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Larsen E. Pettifogger, SASS #32933

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Posts posted by Larsen E. Pettifogger, SASS #32933

  1. This is why identifying the make and model and giving a description of what has been done to the gun is important.  Most Uberti, Pietta and all Ruger single actions use a coil spring and plunger on the hand/pawl.  The Uberti conversions use the old stle leaf spring on the hand.  When a SAA clone over rotates the first thing to look at is if the hand spring is broken or weak.  Next would be the bolt/trigger spring.  Last would be the bolt.  In you case everything is the reverse since you changed the factory bolt.  So it is bolt, bolt/trigger spring then look at the hand/pawl leaf spring while you have the gun apart.

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  2. Added an arrow to Abilene's photo to show where "at this point" is located.  You also need to make sure the head of the bolt fits into the cylinder notch.  Sometimes they are wide and need to be fitted in addition to setting bolt drop.

     

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  3. 20 minutes ago, Don H. said:

    May have to learn to reload myself?

    If you are going to shoot .44 Special you don't have much choice but to reload.

  4. OP the history of the Coyote Cap 1887s is long and complicated.  The fact that some guns are inscribed and some are not is not dispositive.  The inscribed ones mean Cap did additional work on them.  There are lots of genuine Coyote Cap 87s that did not have the "race ready" package.  If it has the Coyote Cap roll stamp on the receiver AND it has an 18 1/2 barrel it is almost for sure a Coyote Cap Special.  The standard model 87s had 20" barrels.  Have you looked to see if it has some sort of drop 2 system?

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  5. It has been about 15 years so I forgot.  Yes you are right the followers initially had a shallow indentation with a small lip on the front of the carrier.  He modified mine before he delivered it by drilling out the indentation and making a hole and slightly enlarging the front of the carrier tab.  Even that did not work all that well as if you pushed the carrier down too hard it just bounced out of the hole and dropped to the bottom of the receiver.  I modified mine with a positive internal stop like Lassiter now uses.

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  6. 15 minutes ago, Sedalia Dave said:

    The very first 87 I bought was one of the ones that were stamped on the side of the receiver as shown in the OP picture. However it did not have his Drop 2 modification. 

    It did have a "drop 2".  The early ones had a tab on the front of the carrier that went into a large hole in the magazine follower.

  7. Here is how the Coyote Cap 1887s were marked.  This is an early one that I personally got directly from Cap.

     

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    I think you may be thinking of the last batch of Norinco 1897s.  Cap worked on many and they were marked CB and the serial number.  Supposedly IAC imported many that were marked CB but had not been worked on personally by Cap.

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  8. On 5/22/2024 at 12:00 PM, Three Foot Johnson said:

    Not all of those classic old lever gun rifle cartridges have a rim, the .35 Remington for example.

    The .35 Remington was designed for the Remington Model 8 in 1906.  The Model 8 is a semi-auto.  A couple of years later the .35 was chambered in the Remington Model 14, a pump action.  Marlin did not chamber the .35 Remington in a lever gun until 1950.  If we assume "classic" means before 1900 I cannot think of any rimless levergun cartridge made before that date.

  9. Hammers are the same except SBH has serations and the Montado cast in checkering.  The serrations generally give a better bite on your thumb.

     

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    The best way to get them is to call Ruger and/or go to Midway, Brownells, etc. websites and put you name on their notify lists.  Once you get the email order immediately as they usually go out of stock very quickly.

     

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  10. Was glad to see Ruger is going to look at the gun(s).  Had a flight cancellation on the way home and then when I thought I was on my final leg home the pilot announced there was a problem with one of the "wings" and we had to de-plane.  Another long delay.  Then I caught something on the planes.  Took a few photos the past couple of days so decided to go ahead and post a few thoughts in case someone else might have a problem in the future.

     

    Ruger frames and gripframes are castings.  Sometimes these castings vary dramatically as shown in the the OP's photos.  The Single Six, Vaquero and Blackhawk gripsframes should all interechange although many need some fitting.  In the OP's photo the frames demonstrate the differences in castings from various production runs.  In this case the critical dimenisions should should be the screw hole and pivot pin locations and spacings.  For example, the spacing between the left grip frame screw hole and the pawl plunger hole look OK even though the space above the plunger holes are very different.  I added a second blue arrow to the left gun to show this spacing.  The height of the recoil shields is, however, very different.  Purple arrows.  Without measuring the other screw holes and pivot pin spacing it is impossible to tell from the photos if anything is markedly out of spec.  Ruger will for sure be looking at these dimensions.

     

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    Here are a few examples are issues that cropped up swapping hammers and grip frames.  As I always tell people "drop-in parts drop-in until they do not."  When fit problems arise is when you have to be a detective.  I recently purchased and fitted a pair of brand new birdshead grips frames to a pair of New Vaqueros.  They were both oversize and required quite a bit of external removal of material.  One dropped right on.  The other was giving me fits.  One time it would fit OK the next time it would bind the hammer or trigger.  After a lot of head scratching it turned out the locator on the front of the gripframe that centers the gripframe on the frame and that the front screw goes though had about a .005" bump right at the bottom where there should be a 90 degree angle.  Purple arrow.  I had to put the gripframe in a milling machine and just kiss the top of the gripframe and square the cut.  In the photo you can see where the mill just kissed the top of the gripframe.  Yellow arrow.  The mill was then cranked forward to square the side of the locator.  After that if fit fine.

     

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    On the last batch of .32 Single Sixes Ruger put out they had 5 1/2" barrels and aluminum gripframes.  I really liked the longer barrels but the aluminum gripframes made the guns too light and they were very whippy moving from target to target.  So I replaced them with steel New Vaquero gripframes.  The front screws in the aluminum gripframes came out with a lot of effort.  After placing the new steel gripframes on the frames the front screw would not go back into the hole.  Turns out Ruger had mislocated the screwhole a few thousands of an inch.  The screw threads cut their own clearance in the soft aluminum.  However the screw would not align with the steel gripframe.  Relocating the screwhole in the frame was impractical so the hole in the gripframe was egg shaped enough for the screw to be able to enter the screwhole.  However, then the screwhead would not sit in the then off-center screwhead recess.  I tried milling a new recess but that looked ugly.  I finally used a button head cap screw that covered the original hole.  Not the perfect solution but it looked OK on a blued gripframe as all the last production .32s were blue.

     

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    Within the past couple of months I picked up a pair of New Vaqueros to do a tuning article on.  They were only a few serial numbers apart.  One was easy to work on the other was a nightmare.  Here is the one that caused all the problems.

     

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    As can be seen the grip frame casting is way off center with the red side touching the hammer and the green side having a huge gap.  If you follow the green side up to where it meets the frame you can see there is even an offset.  On the out-of-the-box gun the hammer would cock and fall when the trigger was pulled.  But the action felt like it had sand in it.  Since these guns were going to be tuned I did not even shoot them.  I took them apart and started work on them.

     

    All Ruger large frame hammers (i.e., anything bigger than the Single Six) should interchange.  In this photo are three of the most popuar.  The stock NMV hammer, an OMV hammer and the SBH/Montado hammer.  The OMV hammers are popular with some shooters and came standard in the New Vaquero CFDA models (Cowboy Fast Draw Association).

     

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    After removing the gripframe I noticed that the factory had taken a file and removed some material on the red arrow side.  I put in a new Montado hammer, bolted everything up and it would not cock.  Again after a lot of head scratching it turned out the hammer had a microscopic bump in the side facing the red arrow.  The hammers are cast and appear flat but are not truly flat.  When I put the hammer on a reference plate and shined a light behind it the bump could be seen.  Black area in photo.  The bump was ground off but the hammer still dragged on the gripframe.   The gripframe had a few more thousands of an inch of material removed from the red side.  At that point the hammer cocked without drag and everything starting working OK.  The hammer in the photo is the replacement Montado hammer after everything was fitted and reinstalled.  The bottom line is that new parts and swapped parts will not necessarily simply bolt-on or drop-in.

     

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    Here are a couple of ideas for troubleshooting these issues.  First completely strip the frame bare.  Install the hammer and hammer pin.  Swing it though a full arc.  If no drag install the gripframe.  Install all FIVE screws and tighten them down evenly to fully seat the gripframe.  Again swing the hammer through a full arc to see if there is any friction.  Next install the mainspring assembly.  A word of caution.  Do not try to install the mainspring with the gripframe installed.  The Ruger assemply video on the Ruger webshite shows the spring going into the gripframe and THEN the gripfame and frame being mated.  The reason is simple.  The hammer strut fits into a slot that has very sharp 90 degree corners.

     

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    When the strut is installed there is a 20 to 1 lever created with the fulcrum being that 90 degree corner.  The strut bends easily and you will not feel the strut bending.

     

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    Then install the pawl, plunger and spring, then the transfer bar and then the trigger, etc.

     

    In other words if everything drops in right away and there is no excess friction or binding you are good to go.  However if there is a problem the best way to find it is by installing and tesing one part at a time.

     

     

     

     

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  11. OK here is an educated guess.  The firing pin is supposed to have a little wiggle in it.  Up/down, left/right AND front/rear.  To accomplish this the hole at the green arrow is larger than the green pin.  This is to help align the firing pin with the firing pin hole in the frame.  What looks like is happening is that the firing pin is supposed to bottom out in the firing pin hole in the hammer on the area in red.  For whatever reason it looks like the firing pin is out of spec or the hole in the hammer is too deep.  Thus rather than bottoming out on the red area when the firing pin hits the primer the firing pin is coming too far back and bent (and loosened) the firing pin retaining pin.  You need new parts as that bent pin is no good and the retaining pin should be a rivet.  You need someone that can check the fit of the firing pin in the hammer.  Once everything is correct the new pin can be riveted in place by pounding it on both sides then polishing the hammer sides smooth.  There should be a very shallow dimple on both sides of the hammer.

     

     

     

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