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View Full Version : Gunsmith that can work on an old Colt Revolvers (1917) in the bay area?


Stormtrooperthunder
07-28-2011, 6:43 PM
So I have a Colt 1917 in 45acp and when I was shooting it the trigger failed to reset. does it both in DA and SA. So any recommendations? I am in San Jose, but I am willing to drive a bit. that is until the semester starts...

dfletcher
07-28-2011, 7:23 PM
You can take it to the San Jose Gun Exchange, they may be able to help.

Does the cylinder turn if you point the barrel straight up and thumb cock the hammer? Since a Colt can be cocked with the cylinder open give this a try. With the cylinder open and the barrel pointed toward the floor, thumb cock the hammer. You should see the hand poke out a bit beyond the recoil plate. Keep your eye on it and bring the barrel from vertical down to vertical up - does the hand drop back behind the recoil plate? If it remains forward can the hand be pushed back, do you feel any forward pressure when you push on the hand?

The trigger returns because the rebound lever cams down against an angled boss on the inside of the hand - if the angle is off proper pressure is not applied, that may be evidenced by no forward pressure on the hand.

It's also possible that the bottom of the V manspring is weak or broken.

If you've recently disassembled the gun it may be that the rebound lever wasn't properly placed back on the boss, you've got to give it a little lift up then seat the hand in it's pin hole. If the sideplate is loose the rebound lever may have slipped off too.

It could be an easy fix, or it could require a new hand or rebound lever. Fitting a Colt hand is a bit of a PITA, but it's not brain surgery. Then there's always the "just needs cleaning" answer - could be that too.

Stormtrooperthunder
07-28-2011, 8:24 PM
I talked to one guy at SJGE. He told me to call Colt to see if they could take care of it and that they dont really work with Colts from that era, but if I could not find anyone else I should take it to them and they would look at it.

It does turn when the barrel is up and down.

I have not taken it apart yet as most people say old Colts are difficult to take apart and vice versa. I do not want to damage this old Colt . I talked to my neighbor about it and he said he would take a look at it, so it is at his house right now.

Do you know where I can get the V mainspring, hand and rebound lever? Seems like Numrich is out of stock.

smle-man
07-28-2011, 8:46 PM
I had the same problem with mine - in fact it fired when I cocked the hammer back single action and when I released the hammer, it fired. The trigger stayed back. Scared the crap out of me! Then it jammed and couldn't get the cylinder open. I took the side plate off at home and found that a previous owner apparently had tried to clean the mechanism and left shredded steel wool inside along with pieces of the mechanism that weren't where they belonged anymore. It was all pretty obvious after I worked the hammer a couple times to see how it all interacted. Put it back to the way it should have been to function correctly and it has worked fine ever since.

Stormtrooperthunder
07-28-2011, 9:13 PM
Yeah, it scared the bejesus out of me. I thought my revolver broke, but thank god it is still fine besides the trigger not resetting, lol.

Does anyone know if New Service parts would work in the 1917? I was thinking since theyre built on the same frame that the internals would be the same as well.

Santa Cruz Armory
07-28-2011, 9:18 PM
PM sent

well206
07-28-2011, 11:11 PM
Tabors in San Bruno. Frank there had plenty of experience with revolvers.

ponderosa
07-28-2011, 11:39 PM
There used to be a guy on here D.R.E. Or something like that who posted all kinds of Colt work he'd done, but haven't seen a post by him in awhile (I'd search but I'm on my phone). Maybe a PM to him may help?

dfletcher
07-29-2011, 1:17 PM
Yeah, it scared the bejesus out of me. I thought my revolver broke, but thank god it is still fine besides the trigger not resetting, lol.

Does anyone know if New Service parts would work in the 1917? I was thinking since theyre built on the same frame that the internals would be the same as well.

New Service parts will work, the 1917 is really just a New Service with a few specs for the military and none change function.

Tabors is a good suggestion, he'll probably disassemble & clean it first. I wouldn't buy parts yet until the sideplate has been removed and internals inspected. It takes about 10 minutes to disassemble, you have to know where everything goes so to speak but it isn't too complicated.

There are other subtle things that could be wrong and causing the problem, the best way is to remove the sideplate, clean and function test.

And if you can contact D.R.E on here he'd for certain be able to correct - the guy's knowledge was just terrific.

The King
07-29-2011, 2:29 PM
Buy a book on midway or elsewhere that will guide you step by step in the disassembly and reassembly of your revolver. That is one of the best parts of this hobby, doing your own work.

1nsanity
07-29-2011, 2:31 PM
Tabors in San Bruno. Frank there had plenty of experience with revolvers.

I second on giving Frank a try...

Stormtrooperthunder
07-29-2011, 7:34 PM
New Service parts will work, the 1917 is really just a New Service with a few specs for the military and none change function.

Tabors is a good suggestion, he'll probably disassemble & clean it first. I wouldn't buy parts yet until the sideplate has been removed and internals inspected. It takes about 10 minutes to disassemble, you have to know where everything goes so to speak but it isn't too complicated.

There are other subtle things that could be wrong and causing the problem, the best way is to remove the sideplate, clean and function test.

And if you can contact D.R.E on here he'd for certain be able to correct - the guy's knowledge was just terrific.

I just got the revolver back from my neighbor and he told me that http://www.gunpartscorp.com/images/schematics/Colt_1917NewService_schem.jpg

part 35 (spring) was bent and he straightened it out, but recommends that I get new one.

I am going to go to the range on Sunday most likely and will test it out to see if other problems do not arise. If something does, I will contact DRE and go over to tabors to see if they can work out the kinks.

Thank for the help so far everyone!

dfletcher
07-29-2011, 8:01 PM
I just got the revolver back from my neighbor and he told me that http://www.gunpartscorp.com/images/schematics/Colt_1917NewService_schem.jpg

part 35 (spring) was bent and he straightened it out, but recommends that I get new one.

I am going to go to the range on Sunday most likely and will test it out to see if other problems do not arise. If something does, I will contact DRE and go over to tabors to see if they can work out the kinks.

Thank for the help so far everyone!

That's the cylinder bolt return spring, a new one is always a good idea on a gun that old. That shouldn't have an effect on the trigger return but if the gun works I wouldn't argue with success. Sometimes things just work out, something gets unstuck or reset.