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 Arsenal defect older than I am

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Zeiss Ikon



Posts : 135
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Join date : 2012-03-10
Age : 58
Location : North Carolina

PostSubject: Arsenal defect older than I am   Wed May 16, 2012 5:38 pm

Since shooting my 91/30 (1943 Izhesvsk) a few weeks ago and doing a complete tear down to clean up corrosive primer residue, I've found I'm now getting 100% rim locks when loading from "pyramid" stacked stripper clips. Many YouTube videos later (from folks who own multiple Mosins and seem both knowledgeable and experienced -- Wabatuckian, IraqVeteran88888, Gungeek, and goldendredger), I concluded I needed to tune up a couple feed related items in my rifle. I pulled the barreled action out of the stock and removed the interrupter/ejector set. I filed the rim clearance crescent in the ejector deeper and smoothed it so the rims could slide by instead of catching (though honestly, it wasn't bad to begin with, and there was no evidence of gouging or scraping as has apparently been the case with some examples), eased the tension on the spring portion of the interrupter, and tested. Nope; although it was much easier to load the rounds from the stripper, I still got 100% rim lock on a stripper load, and could easily reproduce the problem with just two hand loaded rounds. The solution to that seemed to be to bend the interrupter to increase its engagement with the second round, thus (hopefully) holding that round a little further from the first round and eliminating the rim lock.

After multiple tweaks back and forth, twisting the spring arm, bending it sideways (not much to be gained there because of the way it latches to the well constrained ejector), and going back and forth between 100% rim locks and failure to release the second round when the bolt closed (sometimes still with rim locking), I tried bending the tab that actually protrudes into the magazine. This tab was already bent a bit (maybe 15ยบ) about halfway between the upper edge and the tip; I tried to increase that, and the only way to do so seemed to be to put the back part of the tab in a small vise and tap the tip with a hammer.

Well, too much hammer; the tab broke off neatly along the preexisting bend line, so I'm going to have to order a new interrupter and start over with trying to tune out the rim lock. Meantime, however, examination of the break line shows that a small area on the inside of the bend had bluing on both sides of the break. Yes, my interrupter was already cracked when it was reblued and assembled to my receiver, at whatever point (almost certainly before 1960) my rifle was refurbished and stockpiled.

For what it's worth, I now think the interrupter is too hard (brittle) to bend on that short a length without heating (which would require hardening and tempering once done), and I don't intend to try that again; rather, I'm going to look at other causes for the magazine spring overcoming the interrupter. This didn't happen when I first got the rifle (and I did a pretty complete disassembly when I cleaned out the cosmoline); I did get a couple rim locks at the range, but also had a couple stripper loads that worked perfectly. I've had a suggestion to shim the magazine down or action up (the latter is on my list anyway, as part of floating the barrel), but the interrupter is attached to the receiver, and shimming the magazine won't change where it holds the second round (and since this happens with two rounds, as reliably as with five, magazine spring tension level seems to be eliminated).
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Zeiss Ikon



Posts : 135
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Join date : 2012-03-10
Age : 58
Location : North Carolina

PostSubject: Re: Arsenal defect older than I am   Sat May 19, 2012 5:16 pm

With a broken interrupter, I can certainly load single rounds (just slide them into the chamber and close the bolt), so I'm not going to miss my range day. I might even be able to load the magazine, using care to keep the rims in the correct order (i.e. loading the rounds one at a time); the ejector should keep the rounds from coming back out like a fountain when I open the bolt, and as long as the rims aren't lapped the wrong way, the rounds should still feed.

It'd be better to have a working interrupter, though, so I can practice stripper clip reloads (which will be a necessity for Appleseed). A "new" one is only $8 plus shipping online, not a problem come next payday -- but next payday weekend is my next range day, too; it'd be at least a week before I could get the new interrupter, install it, and retune things to restore correct operation (i.e. no rim locks).

Now, I still have the tab that broke off the old interrupter; I also have a propane "turbo" torch with enough propane (left from the mid-1980s) to get at least a few minutes of burn time, a jar of borax I originally bought as a photographic chemical, and a packet of pre-fluxed brazing rod left from the same time frame as the propane (I was trying, then, to braze up a broken office chair base; never got it hot enough even with SolidOx oxy-propane heat, just too big for the torch size). Now, this interrupter is a great deal smaller than that chair was...

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I brought home (from work) some scraps cut from a broken bandsaw blade and discarded pallet banding material. One of the bandsaw bits, teeth ground off, I bent concave to support the original shape of the interrupter tab; some of the other pieces I used as supports, along with Vise-Grip pliers held in my drill press vise, all to get the pieces in original relationship with the blade cutting supporting them (to act as reinforcement for the braze as well as support during the bonding). Literally two minutes with torch, borax, and rod, and everything was bonded together. I reheated the spring arm to barely red and quenched it with water, then heated again to temper (this is all approximate; this part isn't in any way critical for anything other than preventing rim lock), and left it and my Vise-Grips to cool. More to follow.
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Zeiss Ikon



Posts : 135
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Join date : 2012-03-10
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PostSubject: Re: Arsenal defect older than I am   Sat May 19, 2012 7:53 pm

After cleaning up the reinforcing layer (the bandsaw blade scrap) with my Dremel to match the outline of the original interrupter, here's what I had.

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I wound up with an interrupter that's a tiny fraction longer in the tab than the original (due to the small gap between the tab and the body that I wasn't able to completely eliminate during brazing). Rather than return to original dimensions, however, I just cleaned up what I had and sanded off the scale and flux residue. In the second photo, you can see the gap I'm talking about. When I was working on installing the interrupter, however, I found it was much too soft, bending easily with just finger pressure, so I gripped it by the repair, reheated the spring bright red from the base to as close as I could get to the repair (heat conduction into the Vise Grip pliers kept the repair cooler, but hardness is less important at the extreme end of the piece), quenched in water, then tempered much less than previously. By the time that was done, the piece was nicely oxide blued except where the braze joint showed. I oiled it, installed it (after using a tiny square section needle file to extend the slot -- the relief I'd cut in the reinforcement wasn't perfectly aligned with the original ejector tab slot), and tested it -- and it works! I can now load from a pyramid (two over, two under loading method) stripper clip and the first round will feed with just a little effort; the second feeds perfectly (and of course the remaining rounds, with rims not overlapped, are never a problem).

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I still plan to order a replacement interrupter, but for now, I'm leaving this one in place...
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SilverTip
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PostSubject: Re: Arsenal defect older than I am   Sun May 20, 2012 11:30 am

Well done! [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.] you sure do operate on the cheap. Idea
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Zeiss Ikon



Posts : 135
Karma : 8
Join date : 2012-03-10
Age : 58
Location : North Carolina

PostSubject: Re: Arsenal defect older than I am   Sun May 20, 2012 11:37 am

SilverTip wrote:
Well done! [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.] you sure do operate on the cheap. Idea

Can't afford to do it any other way. Rolling Eyes Wait until you see my "rabbit loads" for the 91/30. Should run around eight cents a shot and both sound and kick like a .22 rimfire. Cool
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Zeiss Ikon



Posts : 135
Karma : 8
Join date : 2012-03-10
Age : 58
Location : North Carolina

PostSubject: Re: Arsenal defect older than I am   Sun May 27, 2012 10:48 pm

Well, for whatever it's worth, I shot eight strippers today, and only one of those gave the slightest hesitation in feeding (that one came around after a little thumb nudge). This repaired interrupter works better than it did before I broke it... Very Happy
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