Hello fellow Winchester fans! I never wanted to be “that guy” who joins a forum and immediately asks a question, but here I am. First an intro: I’m Ron, and I’ve been collecting and restoring old military surplus firearms for about 20 years. I served in the U.S. Army as a Tanker for 8 years and retired from a major retailer’s Transportation/Logistics Department almost 8 years ago.I have acquired my 01 Federal Firearms License about a year ago and fill my retired days buying, selling, performing transfers, and doing some light gunsmithing.
I really like the old Winchester .22 firearms and recently had a customer bring in a circa-1956 Winchester Model 61 with a problem. The issue is that after dry firing the rifle, the action slide/bolt seems very loose and the bolt will actually open part way without pulling the forearm to the rear. The problem doesn’t appear when rifle is cocked and appears to function/lock up normally when cocked. It is only after the trigger is pulled that the action slide gets sloppy. I have disassembled, cleaned, oiled the rifle, and it appears to be in good shape otherwise. I have a few of questions for the experts here:
1. What would/could cause the bolt to unlock so easily after dry firing?
2 The hammer catch (the tab that is just to the rear of the trigger guard) has no tension on it and moves freely. Is that normal?
3. Would a faulty slide lock cause the sloppiness in the action slide?
Thank you for any assistance or advice!
January 27, 1992
Thank you for the reply. When I posted my questions, I had cleaned the barrel, receiver, bolt, magazine tube, etc. When I went to clean the trigger assembly, I found that the action slide lock, action slide spring, and action slide post were all missing from the trigger assembly. Doh! I’m sure that is my problem with this Model 61 and I have replacement parts in route to me. Thanks again for the reply.
November 7, 2015
Welcome, Ron! Glad you were able to figure out the issue with your 61. I think those guns are fun to shoot.