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Cowboy 45 Special Ejection Problem


KH24

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Modified an aluminum carrier for the Cowboy 45 Special in a 1860 Henry.  Issue is the shells come straight back and hit you in the forehead.  How do you change the angle of ejection?

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Might be easier to get a hat with a larger brim....

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File off the right side of the top lip of lifter to have the lifter able to whack the LEFT side of the case more during ejection.   That allows case to eject back AND right.  Should not take much.  Find the contact point on the "hump" of the top lip, mark it up with marker or Dykem dye, and work a few cases through the action quickly.   You will see the contact point needing to be relieved has the color rubbed off.

 

Of course, I have not done this on a live match rifle.  Don't attempt unless you have a spare lifter that you can swap in if you go so far it stops ejecting.  Or if brass, a carrier than can be brazed back to original shape.

 

Good luck, GJ

 

 

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Warden - No matter how hard I try, can’t seem to change the Henry into a 94.  Not that I would want too.

Joeronimo - Hat helped deflect a few cases

Abilene - Yes its shorted stroked. No sure why that matters

GJ- filing a little off the side of lifter helped.  Didn’t resolve issue 100%

OLG- Not the issue. No problem extracting the shell

Dutch- already do, left handed shooter.

 

After 50 practice rounds - observe 2 items.  1.  Extracted case falls of the extractor about mid carrier, this could be the problem with case ejecting back.  Anyone else observe this when using the C45S?

2. When chambering a round, some times the tip of the extractor hits the top of the chamber. Takes a little jiggle of the lever, to get bolt to properly align.  Any good suggestions on how to correct this.

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Losing the case off the extractor indicates either a weak extractor, improper hook shape, or damage to the cartridge support tab at lower front face of the bolt.  Most likely the extractor has collected dirt under body of the extractor, or the spring-tension has been lost by use.

 

You must have the case firmly held by extractor hook and support tab so the carrier as it rises quickly kicks the case out of the receiver.  A loose case makes it hard to eject, and hinders consistent ejection direction.

 

Tip of extractor needs to be filed down so there is no impact into the rear of barrel.   Some slots cut into barrels are not very deep, the extractor nose can jam into that and even lift the extractor hook off the rim of the case - also leading to losing firm grip on the case during extraction.  Setting back the barrel to have a shorter chamber during rechambering and forgetting to properly clearance the notch can be the reason that the extractor-nose (replacement) slot was not cut deeply enough to clear the extractor nose itself.

 

I'd start by putting a fresh extractor in, fitting the nose so it never touches the back end of barrel, and checking tension on the leaf.    As well as cleaning the extractor slot, and checking the cartridge support tab.    Tension can be checked in an empty rifle by closing action to where you can still just barely get a finger tip to catch under the extractor nose.   Try to lift up on extractor.  Your finger tip should start to hurt before the extractor moves up far enough to have slipped off the case rim (if one were in the chamber).    Extractor lifts easier than that - too worn out or overly-thinned on the spring leg of extractor.  

 

A .45 Colt extractor (or "large cartridge" size) will work just fine on a C45S case.  I make my C45S cases now by the original Adirondak Jack method - by trimming .45 Colt cases down.

 

good luck, GJ

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KH24, I asked about SS because it changes the timing, and since the carrier is what kicks the shell up out of the extractor, doing so earlier or later may affect the trajectory.  

 

When I added a SS kit to my .357 carbine after many years of having the empties in a nice pile to my right, I went to losing some out front now.

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Make sure the cutout in the barrel is deep enough that the extractor does not hit it when forward. If It does it may not be getting a good hold on the spent cartridge.

kR

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On 5/18/2021 at 9:19 PM, KH24 said:

Modified an aluminum carrier for the Cowboy 45 Special in a 1860 Henry.  Issue is the shells come straight back and hit you in the forehead.  How do you change the angle of ejection?

Your rifle is trying to tell you something, it doesn't like the .45 Cowboy Special!!:P:lol:

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Garrison Joe, as usual is spot on.  Thinking new carrier thru timing off a little and damaged tab on bottom of bolt face       GW

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Adding some pictures to help visualize the issue.

This is the top of the extractor hitting top of chamber - notice extractor tip is below the notch in the rear of barrel. 

20210523_095455.thumb.jpg.681275c670372a4369a2ddae79ba4083.jpg

 

This shows same view with a dummy round - extractor will slide over rim of case to allow bolt to fully close.  This was the problem, sometimes the extractor didn't slide over rim without a little jiggle of the lever.

 

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View of bolt - Bolt is slight below the top of the frame - comparing to other 73's the bolt is riding on the frame.  First is the Henry second is the 73.  Also notice alignment of the toggle pins.  The  center pin on the Henry link is higher than the ends;  73 has all pins aligned.  What causes the miss alignment on the Henry?  

 

Will add more is second post

 

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Few photos of the extract sequence.  Notice when the empty case starts to disengage from the extractor.  With the  bolt removed, when an case is pushed on the extractor you can hear an click when extractor rides over case rim.  Shaking bolt up and down will not disengage the case, pulling the case straight back from bolt will not disengage case, pushing down on from of case will not disengage case, only when you push up on case lip does the case start to disengage.  Leads me to believe the extractor is good.  Will change it anyways just to see if there is a difference.   When using a full length 45 Colt case - case doesn't disengage until bolt is almost fully retracted into frame.  

 

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Show a pic of the cartridge support tab at the bottom of bolt.  Best photo to check if that tab has bent is a shot parallel to the bolt face, centered on the centerline of bolt (so that the pic will show the profile of the firing pin tip if the pin is extended).

 

Many 73 bolts will sag at the bolt face a little if no cartridge being fed.   That can indicate the fit between the bolt socket and the nose end of the firing pin extension is loose, or that there is wear on the frame where the bolt slides forward over the carrier.   Check that for a lot of slop, too.  A cartridge being fed is almost an automatic centering dowel, and the rounded or conical nose of the bullet helps lift up the bolt to the real centerline.

 

The center pin of the links being slightly higher than perfectly parallel is not too big of a problem.  If the arm on the lever is slightly longer than is needed, the links "over-cam" so the center pin is just higher than the end pins.  This puts even more of a lockup on the toggles so that they will not unlock under pressure of firing the round..    

 

Lots of the motion that you need to check is laid out in the great book, Gunsmithing Guns of the Old West, by Phil David Chicoine.  You seem to be at the point where a review of the couple of pages of "How do they work" section of the Toggle Action Winchester Rifles chapter would help you a lot.

 

My guess now with your pics on my screen is that the support tab is bent down (or knocked off) and that allows the fired case to slip down off the extractor too early, and it also can make it hard to get the loaded rounds to slide into the chamber without a "bump"

 

Good luck, GJ

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Two pictures of the bolt with case in extractor - doesn't look like bottom tap is bent.  Tap is a replacement and looks solid.

 

There was a timing issue with the aluminum carrier - carrier was rising hitting bottom of bolt as it was being pulled back into frame.  Carrier was not hitting lower tap.  Fixed that so bolt is flush inside frame before carrier rises up to the level of the bottom of the bolt.  That really helped resolving the ejection issue, plus modifying top of carrier to throw shells to the left.   Still not happy with the bolt slop allowing extractor to hit chamber top.  Rifle came with two bolts - other one is off getting a new bottom tap and extractor fitted, its also the newer style with a toggle to connect the firing pin extension.

 

Thanks for the help - will pickup the book recommended.

 

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58 minutes ago, KH24 said:

other one is off getting a new bottom tap and extractor fitted, its also the newer style with a toggle to connect the firing pin extension.

 

That "other" bolt may be a good choice to run with.  

 

I'm not sure that I'm seeing the front end of the support tab real well in your photos.  Ideally the leading edge of the tab should be rounded.  Yours in pics looks like it has a flat face.   Either a flat face or a sharp point there on the tip of the support tab can grab into the rear of the case as the round chambers, which feels like resistance and a bump as you close action.

 

And, make sure the tip of the extractor is angled enough on it's lower face to allow the extractor hook to get completely into the recess just before the rim of the case.  If the tip is left "fat", the tip of the extractor hook only fits part way into the recess, and that means less holding power.

 

Lots of little details in getting a 73 bolt to run right, as you are finding out.

 

good luck, GJ

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