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1873 Winchester gunsmith
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October 4, 2020 - 4:36 pm
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Hi. I have an original 1873 model 3 manufactured 1888. It functions but timing  is an issue. I’ve messed around with it. But, don’t want to go full “Bubba” on it. Anyone know of qualified Winchester 1873 gunsmith in the central Ohio area?

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October 4, 2020 - 6:40 pm
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Please explain what you mean by “timing”.  What is actually going on?

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October 4, 2020 - 11:48 pm
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There isn’t much to the timing on the 73. The most common issue is either has worn or bent parts or someone put in worn or bent parts. The most common problem people have is the elevator is not going to the end of its travel and the bolt can’t feed the shell. There is only one part that can be assemble wrong which is the firing pin retractor.

Most any gunsmith can figure out the issue since its so simple.

Bob

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October 4, 2020 - 11:59 pm
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BB94 said
Hi. I have an original 1873 model 3 manufactured 1888. It functions but timing  is an issue. I’ve messed around with it. But, don’t want to go full “Bubba” on it. Anyone know of qualified Winchester 1873 gunsmith in the central Ohio area?  

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October 5, 2020 - 2:43 am
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I remember sending him a picture of my cutaway, that was a few years ago. 

The one thing when I watch that video I see him struggling to lever the action from the stiff hammer spring, if he cocks the hammer first it would of been a lot easier. That was one thing I was taught when I first got into collecting that when you pickup a gun off someones table its common courtesy to cock the hammer first before levering the gun. I do it all the time on my own guns, it reduces wear. Its much easier on the action if it doesn’t have to push the hammer back and on a 73 or 76 you open the dust cover as well by hand.

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October 5, 2020 - 5:46 am
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1873man said
I remember sending him a picture of my cutaway, that was a few years ago. 

The one thing when I watch that video I see him struggling to lever the action from the stiff hammer spring, if he cocks the hammer first it would of been a lot easier. That was one thing I was taught when I first got into collecting that when you pickup a gun off someones table its common courtesy to cock the hammer first before levering the gun. I do it all the time on my own guns, it reduces wear. Its much easier on the action if it doesn’t have to push the hammer back and on a 73 or 76 you open the dust cover as well by hand.

Bob  

Good information Bob. I was not aware of that & will be adopting this method myself.

RickC

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October 5, 2020 - 7:33 pm
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I first must say I did not watch the entire video.  I have attached a picture of the Directions page from a Winchester 1865 Catalog.  Please read the “to stiffen the Springs” paragraph.  The Directions page is the same up until around 1876.

The 3 set screws were never intended to be any tighter than what is necessary to get the proper operation of the main spring, carrier and lever. I guarantee you that if the springs are not ruined sometimes the carrier can be aligned to operate better if you loosen it’s set screw.

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October 5, 2020 - 8:31 pm
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Hi. Thanks for the replies. I believe it to be an elevator issue, as well. Carrier block drops ever so slightly when I close the action. Cartridge mis-aligns with bore. If I tilt action to 8:00 o’clock and cycle, it will work. I tried new finger lever and carrier lever springs. No change.    

I answered above prior to watching the video. That very well maybe the fix. 

Cranking on the carrier lever with a cheater bar probably qualifies as a “bubba” but I’ll do it.

This firearm is a shooter level, but I hope to pass it on to grandson in working order.

May have to re-line bore some day. But it shoots decent at 50 yrds. 

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October 5, 2020 - 9:32 pm
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BB94 said
Hi. Thanks for the replies. I believe it to be an elevator issue, as well. Carrier block drops ever so slightly when I close the action. Cartridge mis-aligns with bore. If I tilt action to 8:00 o’clock and cycle, it will work. I tried new finger lever and carrier lever springs. No change.    

I answered above prior to watching the video. That very well maybe the fix. 

Cranking on the carrier lever with a cheater bar probably qualifies as a “bubba” but I’ll do it.

This firearm is a shooter level, but I hope to pass it on to grandson in working order.

May have to re-line bore some day. But it shoots decent at 50 yrds.   

DO NOT use a cheater bar if you have not tried to use the set screw to get the proper tension on the carrier spring.

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October 5, 2020 - 9:47 pm
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RickC(AG) said

  

Only posted this video to demonstrate what the problem can be & how one person fixed it. I agree there might be better methods. Hope it helped.

RickC

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October 5, 2020 - 10:02 pm
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Chuck said

DO NOT use a cheater bar if you have not tried to use the set screw to get the proper tension on the carrier spring.  

Adjusting the spring only affects where the lever or carrier arm stays while your hand is not on the lever. If you lever the gun full open the carrier arm will be at its full up position its capable of reaching regardless of the spring.

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October 7, 2020 - 9:44 pm
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1873man said

Adjusting the spring only affects where the lever or carrier arm stays while your hand is not on the lever. If you lever the gun full open the carrier arm will be at its full up position its capable of reaching regardless of the spring.

Bob  

Bob you are the expert but I have seen carrier related issues solved by messing with the set screw.  It surely can’t hurt to try.  Less tension on the spring may not force the carrier as high?  It’s better than to start bending stuff.  Maybe the other issue the guy was having could of been solved too by loosening the main/hammer spring set screw?

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October 7, 2020 - 11:53 pm
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Hi,   Bob is right, the lever moves the carrier into the correct position, the springs only hold that position.  The carrier lever is worn, or bent. Its possible the carrier is worn inside.   The lever has only so much movement, and if its moving the carrier up, or down too far, it needs a SLIGHT bend.

Model 1886, 1894, and 1892 all have springs to hold carriers in position to load cartridge cleanly.   Eric

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