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1873 Firing Pin Wont Fit
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September 4, 2023 - 4:01 am
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My original firing pin seemed to be modified in some way, but does work. I ordered a “New Old Stock” firing pin for 2nd and 3rd model (mine is 2nd model). When I went to install the new pin, it got jammed in the bolt and wont ease all the way in. Also when I measured the old one and replacement pin, the replacement was a bit shorter. Were there different size pins for these rifles? It was advertised for a rifle, but could this have been for a carbine? Didn’t know if there was a difference. 

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September 4, 2023 - 4:33 am
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Post pictures of the bolt face. On a previous thread you showed the firing pin was ground on for some reason I wonder if the bolt has been modified as well or was replaced with a first model bolt. It would help if you keep all your questions on this gun in one thread so we don’t have to search back posts to see what has transpired. I copied some of your photos to this thread. Its a 1882 second model.

Bob

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September 4, 2023 - 4:53 am
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1873man said
Post pictures of the bolt face. On a previous thread you showed the firing pin was ground on for some reason I wonder if the bolt has been modified as well or was replaced with a first model bolt. It would help if you keep all your questions on this gun in one thread so we don’t have to search back posts to see what has transpired. I copied some of your photos to this thread. Its a 1882 second model.

Bob

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Good point Bob! I’ll make sure to keep it on one thread. But I will get a photo of it tomorrow. Now I’m curious. I can definitely tell the bolt was filed and polished on top. I still cannot find a new extractor. There is actually some hook left on the top, but it also has been filed in ways. Kinda want to just get all matching parts for that era. Still haven’t shot it yet, but should by next weekend. 

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September 4, 2023 - 1:33 pm
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Do a side by side comparison of the two pins. A 1st model pin has a longer pin that hits the primer (the small diameter) so a later bolt/firing pin are different than a 1st model. Your gun is a later 2nd model from what you said so I would not think it would  have a 1st model bolt. What is the serial number?

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September 5, 2023 - 12:48 pm
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1873man said
Do a side by side comparison of the two pins. A 1st model pin has a longer pin that hits the primer (the small diameter) so a later bolt/firing pin are different than a 1st model. Your gun is a later 2nd model from what you said so I would not think it would  have a 1st model bolt. What is the serial number?

Bob

  

Serial# is 84734. The firing pin itself that’s in the rifle now as I got it, is longer than the one I ordered for the 2nd and 3rd model. Here is a pic of the bolt face. I put it back together for now, but this pic was taken by the place I bought it from. Seems to give a clear view, I assume. pix635893012.jpgImage Enlarger

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September 5, 2023 - 1:11 pm
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You have a first model bolt in it so you need a first model firing pin or replace the bolt with later bolt.

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September 5, 2023 - 2:17 pm
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1873man said
You have a first model bolt in it so you need a first model firing pin or replace the bolt with later bolt.

Bob

  

I’ll want a 2nd model bolt then. Since I already bought the firing pin. Gun seems to cycle fine, but need to see how it fires. Just want it in it’s original state. The best I can anyhow.

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September 5, 2023 - 6:14 pm
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I checked into the first model bolt in second models and I thought is was just early 2nd models but I see later 2nd models with 1st model bolts. You would buy a 3rd model bolt to go with your new pin. I should add that 2nd model guns have 1st model  & 3rd model bolts mixed together. I don’t have any info on a serial range as to when what happened.

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September 5, 2023 - 10:38 pm
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1873man said
I checked into the first model bolt in second models and I thought is was just early 2nd models but I see later 2nd models with 1st model bolts. You would buy a 3rd model bolt to go with your new pin. I should add that 2nd model guns have 1st model  & 3rd model bolts mixed together. I don’t have any info on a serial range as to when what happened.

Bob

  

Well, maybe it came this way. If it shoots good, I might as well keep it as is and sell the firing pin I got. I was in this to resurrect an old shooter anyhow. LOL! Not a show piece. For now anyway. I appreciate you looking into all this Bob! Thank you!

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September 7, 2023 - 5:33 am
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Any thought about my sporting leaf sight being crooked a bit? Wasn’t sure if this was common, or not. Maybe bent from it’s past? I haven’t shot it yet to see if it’s still zero’ed. I assume this wont cause any sighting issues. Doesn’t wiggle and is solid in place. 

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September 7, 2023 - 11:37 am
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  The first step is to remove the sight and inspect the dovetails. The sight is tapped off the barrel to the right side when viewed from the back. Use a brass punch and be careful not to hit the barrel. The most common causes are the sight dovetail has been filed, shimmed, or the sight is after market. A crooked barrel sight can be a be a modern sight on an old gun. Bent doesn’t seam likely. T/R

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September 7, 2023 - 12:33 pm
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TR said
  The first step is to remove the sight and inspect the dovetails. The sight is tapped off the barrel to the right side when viewed from the back. Use a brass punch and be careful not to hit the barrel. The most common causes are the sight dovetail has been filed, shimmed, or the sight is after market. A crooked barrel sight can be a be a modern sight on an old gun. Bent doesn’t seam likely. T/R

  

Before I remove it I’m going to see if the gun came with this originally. Waiting on my letter. Hopefully nothing was tampered with. Plus if it shoots straight, I’ll probably just leave it be. Isn’t too drastic looking, but I do have a picky eye and things will drive me crazy at times. Laugh

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September 7, 2023 - 1:37 pm
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To me it looks like that sight is newer than the gun and it has the 1000 yard mark where the 73 rifle only went up to the 900 yard.

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September 7, 2023 - 4:58 pm
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1873man said
To me it looks like that sight is newer than the gun and it has the 1000 yard mark where the 73 rifle only went up to the 900 yard.

Bob

  

Actually, the glare of the lights make it look newer. The patina matches the gun if you saw it in person. But,…. you are the pro. So you are probably correct. I assume the letter from the Cody museum will mention what site it came with originally?

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September 7, 2023 - 6:09 pm
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Only 5% of the letters will specify sights so its a long shot. You can go by the wear on the barrel to see if that sight has been on there a long time or there could be wear from another type of sight.

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September 10, 2023 - 10:34 pm
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UPDATE:

I wont be swapping out the bolt and firing pin for the time being. Took it out today and it fired flawlessly. Shot some with lowest starting charge of smokeless powder and some with 31gr black powder. Accuracy was satisfactory for a rifle this old. Can’t complain about a thing. But I do need to pick some brains on the black powder charge. 

This is chambered in .44-40 and I am using .428 diameter cast bullets with 31gr of Swiss FFFG powder. Loaded with this charge, the rifle felt like it had a lot of power. I am not sure how this round is supposed to act, since I normally use .38’s in my modern 1873’s. Is a charge of 31gr in this rifle too much? I assume it seems too powerful due to the big boom BP makes and with more recoil induced compared to low charge smokeless. Hope I’m making sense. Just don’t want to damage the toggle link. 

Had to sport my old hat from back in the day.Laugh

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September 11, 2023 - 2:33 am
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Great range report, glad things are working out for you and this rifle. If 31 grains of Holy Black fills the case to the base of the bullet or a bit higher to result in a slightly compressed load you are probably very close to an ideal load. If you’re using Starline brass I’m guessing you’ll never get close to the “nominal” 40 grains without a tall drop tube and some very aggressive compression.

Nice hat.

 

Mike

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September 11, 2023 - 2:46 am
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TXGunNut said
Great range report, glad things are working out for you and this rifle. If 31 grains of Holy Black fills the case to the base of the bullet or a bit higher to result in a slightly compressed load you are probably very close to an ideal load. If you’re using Starline brass I’m guessing you’ll never get close to the “nominal” 40 grains without a tall drop tube and some very aggressive compression.

Nice hat.

 

Mike

  

Thanks about the hat. We go a long way back. LOL! So it sounds to me the rifle is pretty safe then. Just making sure. Cause it sounded like a BEAST! But like I mentioned, I am used to light .38 loads smokeless loads. This is my first antique and I must say, it’s the most fun I’ve had shooting thus far! 

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