Friday, May 08, 2009

Broke My Race Gun.........

Frame crack.
(Click to make biggerific)

Day before yesterday while practicing for the upcoming European Championships I had just emptied a magazine and was about to reload when I noticed that the slide on my High Standard race gun wouldn't go fully forward into battery. I racked the slide a couple of times and it was definitely binding just before closing fully. I locked the slide back and pushed the barrel button to remove the barrel, then I slid the slide off of the frame. It was really stiff and didn't want to come off the frame. Usually you have to be careful as if you hit the slide release with the barrel removed it will throw the slide across the room!

A close inspection showed just the top of a small crack in the right side of the frame, extending up through the right side rail. So much for that frame!

That evening I fully stripped all the "Tuned and polished" parts out of the ruined frame and put then in a box. I then completely stripped a used but still stock gun I had picked up at Cabela's in Reno at last year's Gun Blogger Rendezvous. Checking everything over carefully, I discovered that the new frame had been slightly mis-machined and the barrel retention pin hole was about .018 too low in the frame, so the barrel wasn't locking in properly. Several hours later that was resolved. By midnight I had all the frame modifications completed and all the parts from the broken gun installed. I put a few rounds through it in the barn to make sure it was functional.

The next morning I took it out to the range to give it a try. Any time you do gun mods you should shoot it first with only one round. Then shoot it with two rounds. That way if it decides to go full auto on you you can keep it under control. It passed all the initial tests. I loaded up some magazines and decided to get in some practice as it breaks in. On about the fifth magazine it decided to do a double-tap on it's own. Oops! It sounds like the sear is hanging up just a bit, or the sear spring is a little light. I cranked in a little more sear spring tension and it started working like it should. The sear spring pressure is adjustable on a High Standard, so you can adjust your trigger pull with a small screwdriver. I modify the shape of the sear spring slightly, and apparently I had moved the trigger pull range just a bit low! I removed the sear and polished it a bit more and re-contoured the sear spring a small amount. I could see the frame rails needed a bit more polishing, so I did that as well.

After reassembly, I took it back to the range, and now it was starting to run like a race gun should run. It still needed a little more break-in, but it's just about there.

We'll see how it works tomorrow at the Kitsap Rifle and Revolver Club's Fun Steel match tomorrow. Keep your fingers crossed, I haven't got time for anything else to break!



At Saturday, May 09, 2009 4:56:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is it possible to weld & rework the frame to salvage it? I suspect that the lower pressure of a .22 might make this possible.

The other thought I had was concerning a buffer. They seem to be available for a number of .22's, such as Rugers.

High Standards aren't very common any more, at least around here.


At Saturday, May 09, 2009 7:51:00 PM, Blogger Mr. Completely said...

It's possible that a really good welder with a TIG might be able to weld it. I can re-machine it without any problem, I'd think. I haven't been able to figure out a shock buffer for the High Standards yet, but I'm working on it.....

Mr. C.


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