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Thread: Ruger Blackhawk hammer springs

  1. #1

    Default Ruger Blackhawk hammer springs

    A while back I put shims, a Wolff spring kit along with a super blackhawk hammer on my New model Blackhawk. The hammer spring is the 14lb version. I recently loaded some ammo using CCI primers which I think to be a tad bit harder than most. I had three that didn't fire out of 50. They did fire the second go around. The dents in the primers don't look all that different than those from my 629-4 on the same ammo.

    Is the 14lb hammer spring to light? Anyone else have this experience? The good news is that it put six rounds into a silver dollar at 25 yards

  2. #2
    Member gunbugs's Avatar
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    The primers probably weren't seated all the way.
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind."

  3. #3

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    Hmmm? Your most likely right! I have always seated primers with the ram prime on my Rock Chucker but did these with my Lee hand priming tool. I haven't used that hand priming tool in years and i think you just woke up my memory as to why it has stayed on the back of the shelf.

    I noticed that when I squeeze the handle on that hand priming tool it feels like it has two stopping points. It comes up against what feels like a stopping point when the primer is just flush however I can still squeeze the handle further and the result is the primer being a full millimeter below flush. I just sorted through 100 rounds of that ammo and found 2 rounds that are just flush. The rest are all seated deep. I'm betting that those two don't go bang the first time when fired in the Blackhawk. I'll let you know tonight! My -4 629 Classic with the firing pin on the hammer doesn't care. It's banged out a few hundred rounds of that ammo without a hitch. For what it's worth, we were shooting milk jugs full of water at a hundred yards and I went six for six several times with the 629. I couldn't get that done with the Ruger. I might be shoving a little crow down my own throat here as I have always talked up the Rugers over the Smiths......maybe I was full of $#!T...just maybe!

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    The original Dan Wesson's were the most accurate I've ever owned. 8" barrel and 2x Leupold scope will shoot inside 3" at 100 with the old Elmer Keith 429421 and 22 gr 2400. The old S&W 29 would do twice that or a little more with the same scope but the 629 I had would be at the 1' group. I still kick myself for selling it to a friend who died soon after and his son sold it for $300...to buy drugs I think...I was really stupid on that one.

    Some Rugers shoot, some don't. Reaming the cylinder helps a lot.
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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
    I noticed that when I squeeze the handle on that hand priming tool it feels like it has two stopping points. It comes up against what feels like a stopping point when the primer is just flush however I can still squeeze the handle further and the result is the primer being a full millimeter below flush.
    I like hand priming and being able to feel the primer being seated. You can feel the resistance when the anvil bottoms out and you can feel the added compression until the cup bottoms out... And with the tray fed RCBS tool you can do a hundred at a time completely by Braille while watching TV, or reading a book, or whatever.
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  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    I like hand priming and being able to feel the primer being seated. You can feel the resistance when the anvil bottoms out and you can feel the added compression until the cup bottoms out... And with the tray fed RCBS tool you can do a hundred at a time completely by Braille while watching TV, or reading a book, or whatever.
    That's exactly why I was using the hand primer and your surmation is spot on. It is easy and natural for me to squeeze the handle as far as it will go but the end product leaves me with a primer seated far deeper than any factory ammo. The firing pin still gets to them so I guess that's what I'm going with!

  7. #7

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    Oh yeah. Back in my competition days I kept all my wheel guns tuned to the lightest possible trigger pull and hammer fall with reliable ignition. Fully seated primers went hand in hand with that. The tiniest bit of give when pin struck cup was enough for a misfire. Shooting was as much about tuning my reloading as tuning my guns.
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    the 14lb wolff hammer spring is for a New Model Vaquero which has a shorter strut and was designed to be used in the XR3 grip frame with the lock mechanism, they did away with the lock about 3-4 years ago. your New Model Blackhawk has a longer strut and the grip frame should be an XRN-3 RED. Wolff makes a 17lb spring for that grip frame, you can always take a few coils off the spring to make it alittle lighter. you can you the 14lb spring in your gun but I would recommend Federal primers as they are far softer than CCI.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roughneck View Post
    the 14lb wolff hammer spring is for a New Model Vaquero which has a shorter strut and was designed to be used in the XR3 grip frame with the lock mechanism, they did away with the lock about 3-4 years ago. your New Model Blackhawk has a longer strut and the grip frame should be an XRN-3 RED. Wolff makes a 17lb spring for that grip frame, you can always take a few coils off the spring to make it alittle lighter. you can you the 14lb spring in your gun but I would recommend Federal primers as they are far softer than CCI.
    You will not make a spring "lighter" by cutting coils off of it. You will only make it shorter. The spring weight is primarily determined by the diameter of the wire. Lighter springs tend to actually be longer than heavier springs for the same application. An example are the Wilson springs for the S&W revolver rebound slides.
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind."

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    gunbugs, I know different springs have different internal diameters, overall length and spring wire diameter. you can get light and heavy springs in all different configurations depending on manufacturer. I don't recommend cutting springs but it is a cheaper way to reduce the resistance in the pull and it will affect the momentum of the hammer drop. it has to do with the percentage of max compression of the spring during the cycle of its intended operation. for a spring with resting tension that is already compressed a certain percentage, taking off a coil or two will reduce the compression percentage and will lower the overall pressure applied by the spring. I use to build custom single actions mostly off ruger vaqueros and blackhawks for SASS, I had custom springs made for my guns. I am just going by what I learned over the years of tuning them. I am no expert or engineer. just trying to help this guy out to make his revolver reliable.

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    Member gunbugs's Avatar
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    Cutting coils off the hammer spring will generally reduce, not improve reliability. If you want it to be reliable, just use the correct spring.
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind."

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    that's definitely possible a lot of factors can make guns not be reliable, weak springs and not correctly fit parts are the biggest issue with revolvers. but that's why I explained to him in the first reply that he is most likely using the wrong Wolff spring. you must have missed that part and got tunnel vision on the other.

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    No tunnel vision here. Just think cutting coils is generally a bad idea.
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind."

  14. #14

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    Do you suppose the fact that I have replaced the original hammer with the heavier Super Blackhawk hammer could be part of the problem. I had a couple of misfires with white box Winchester ammo today. Brownells says it should work. I used a feeler gauge when putting the shims in and they are in the correct spots. There is zero drag and the hammer is dead center when it hits the firing pin.

    I am going to put the 17 lb spring in tomorrow and shoot a couple hundred rounds.

    One fella that Is an acquaintance and is rumored to know his way around inside most single actions told me to get rid of the transfer bar and put in more shims. Then just carry it with an empty hole under the hammer. That would be fine for as long as I had the gun as deer hunting is always a one and done proposition, with maybe a coupe de grace round in the ear hole if needed. The problem is that I could fall over dead tomorrow and my Blackhawk wouldn't be under my watchful eye anymore. I don't want to create a hazard for the next guy.

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elmerkeithclone View Post
    Do you suppose the fact that I have replaced the original hammer with the heavier Super Blackhawk hammer could be part of the problem.
    I believe Ruger uses the same spring regardless of hammer type. I've swapped hammers around several times without issue. First thing I would do is put the factory spring back in and see what happens. My limited experience, FWIW: every time I've tried aftermarket springs I've been disappointed and ended up going back to factory.
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
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    If you take the transfer bar out, it won't go bang. The transfer bar is what "transfers" the hammer strike to the firing pin.
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind."

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    I believe Ruger uses the same spring regardless of hammer type. I've swapped hammers around several times without issue. First thing I would do is put the factory spring back in and see what happens. My limited experience, FWIW: every time I've tried aftermarket springs I've been disappointed and ended up going back to factory.
    I put the original spring back in and it works fine. I left the trigger part of it with the shims and lighter spring and left the hammer shims installed. There is a big difference in the dent in the primer.

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by gunbugs View Post
    If you take the transfer bar out, it won't go bang. The transfer bar is what "transfers" the hammer strike to the firing pin.
    Thanks ya saved me some time! I was just going to take the guy at his word but after reading your post and then cocking the hammer on my BH while watching the transfer bar...it is kind of obvious. I should have just sent the darned thing to you to start with but then what would I do after supper in the evenings...work puzzles like my Dad has done every night for the last 20 years? Not for me!

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