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Joined: Mar 2013
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Gankai Offline OP
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Sidelock

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I just received a side lock P. Webley SxS best gun made in 1894. It came with a firing pin that broken off at the base. After removing the disk - there were no return springs. I am having a new firing pin made but the question came up when did firing pin return springs first appear? Seems like a natural evolutionary thing but now as I think about it some of my older guns did not have them either. Seems like the tip of a pin could stick in a primer and get a bending force each time the action was opened. Seems like since hammer guns evolved to rebounding locks, you would want a return mechanism of some kind as the rebounding hammers moved internally? There must be some history and thoughts on this out there in the group that could be shared?

Rick

Last edited by Gankai; 03/28/24 09:56 PM.

Rick Hill
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I have a Joseph Lang non-rebounding hammer gun with firing pin return springs. When the gun is brought to half-cock the firing pins retract. I have no idea if they were installed in 1866 or later.

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Gankai;

I tried to send you a Private Message(PM) but your profile says that you have elected not to receive them. The reason I choose to send you a PM is that your question and subsequent statements lead me to believe that there is information about how British side locks work in regard to the cocking levers and the issues where individuals believe they have strikers (firing pins) issues when they do not. My discussion will be long and most readers here will not likely be interested in the technical discussion. If you want to discuss this send me a PM with your email address.

As to your original question. I suspect you are more interested in when did striker return springs appear in hammerless side lock guns since you are describing receiving such a gun. I have earliest know John Robertson built prototype Boss style SLE which later became the Boss classic design and it was completed on 7Aug1889. It does not have striker return springs and has no room in the action to add them. It works fine without them but the strikers must be made absolutely correct with maximum of .040" protrusion with the tumblers forward and the striker nose completely radiused, hardened and polished for the full length of the protrusion. Since you are having a striker made for you Webley SLE the person making this striker may not be acquainted with precision process of carrying this work out and fitting it to the action for trouble free working.

This Boss prototype early Chilton locks do not even have the built in anvil on the lock plate to limit the forward movement of the tumblers, I suspect your Webley does.

Kind Regards;
Stephen Howell

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I have a Purdey hammer gun having rebounding locks with striker return springs built in 1869,


The only lessons in my life I truly did learn from where the ones I paid for!
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An 1880's (IIRC) Purdey Hammerless-Spring Assist opener.
Spring-Rebound firing pins

[Linked Image from i.ibb.co]

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Don't forget the Scotts from the 1880 that had a slot. I have been really diggin' on this & info is most difficult to mine. I was going to start a thread upstairs but haven't gotten around to it? Do Pinfires exist with striker springs?

Serbus,

Raimey
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Raimey,
I don't think pinfires have striker springs, the pin in the cartridge is the striker.
Mike

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Gankai Offline OP
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I had changed my preferences when I got about 100 emails/notices per day. I put them back to accept notices and emails. You are correct - I was surprised at that level of precision the firing pins/strikers were made at (for 1894). Fortunately we had an unbroken, functioning striker with .060 protrusion as well as the broken striker for comparison. There was space for a spring and they were added to both. The gun functions well now and gone through about 70 rounds of my 2 1/2 inch reloads. The primer strikes are equal and robust but not excessive.


Rick Hill
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