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Old 02-25-2018, 09:59 PM
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Newbie with a 20a



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Hi all. I just purchased this little No.20-a a few days ago. It's a solid little gun but I've noticed a slight hitch.

It loads, fires and ejects without issue... except for the very last cartridge in the magazine. The mag spring/follower doesn't push the cartridge quite far enough, which locks the action open.

A simple tilt of the muzzle skyward is all that's needed to free up the mechanism, chamber the round and fire.

I suspect the mag spring may be tired. When I purchased the rifle, a small bag of spare parts was included. This bag just so happens to contain a "new" mag spring!

My question now is, how do I go about changing it out?
20180224_135259_1519613863990.jpg20180224_133740_1519613902570.jpg
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Old 02-26-2018, 09:03 AM
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There is s sticky at the top that goes through the disassembly of these magazines but I would make sure it's really the magazine spring before I did anything like that. I suspect that there might have been a repair to the part of the magazine tube that catches and retracts the follower (a very common problem with these) and the repair does not allow the follower to move far enough to fully seat the last round. with the gun taken down see if the end of the magazine follower come through the receiver a little, if not push or pull on it (maybe with a magnet) to see if it's bottoming out, if it can't be move any farther in, a new spring will not do you any good.

I have a Model 1891 lever gun with a repaired magazine that has the same issue with the last round, my plan is to glue a small spacer on the end making sure it's not to long or it will catch the lifter.

Last edited by Sav22; 02-26-2018 at 09:12 AM.
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Old 02-26-2018, 09:52 AM
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I apologize, but I do not see any stickys in this section (or any section for that matter??) Could this be due to me using a phone to view it? I'll jump on my desktop and take a look.

Good point about a mag repair. The magazine has in fact been repaired and I was wondering about full follower travel myself.

It's a quality repair, TIG welded instead of brazed, but that doesn't mean there wasn't some resulting heat warpage that binds the follower up.

I'll split it apart and see where the follower stops

Last edited by Dieseldude03; 02-26-2018 at 09:56 AM.
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Old 02-26-2018, 12:40 PM
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OK. So I jumped on my archaic desktop and, lo and behold, there's a sticky! Said sticky is NOT visible on my Android phone, so I have an excuse... albeit a weak one.

As far as my rifle is concerned, I'm going to have to locate my pen magnet and see if I can draw the mag follower into the receiver any. Right now, it comes to rest about 1/8" shy of entering the receiver. How far into the receiver should it protrude?

Also watching through the slot in the inner mag tube while returning the outer to the closed position... with the rifle in the horizontal/shooting position, the follower wants to stop/hang roughly 3/8" back from the receiver where, with the rifle in the vertical (muzzle up) position, it will continue rearward that additional 3/8" without hesitation, stopping 1/8" shy of entering the receiver.
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Old 02-26-2018, 06:16 PM
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The face of the follower should end up even with the inside surface of the receiver, or very close to it - this keeps the follower from catching on the lifter and pushes the nose of the bullet far enough it will not catch on the edged of hole in the receiver. Since there is a little clearance between the lifter and where the magazine enters the receiver, and the ends of bullets usually are rounded, it probably doesn't have to be perfect to work.
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Old 03-10-2018, 09:21 PM
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IT WORKS!

I finally got time (and ambition) to pull the little 20a apart and try to draw the follower into the receiver with a magnet. It popped right into position, about 1/8" into the receiver.
That told me the magazine tube and follower should be mechanically sound, so I took it upon myself to disassemble the magazine itself and see what greeted me.
I was successful in my endeavor, but any future magazine shenanigans will involve at least 3 hands and a Catholic priest.

Anyhow, I found the magazine spring was in tired shape, and was actually 2" shorter than the actual magazine! While there was still a tiny bit of tension in the spring with the follower in the unloaded position (all the way back) it would fall back into the magazine a fuzz with just gravity. I wonder if it may have been a spring intended for the 2/3 magazine?

Luckily, the rifle was shipped with a bag-o-spare-parts that included something that mimicked a magazine spring! While a tiny bit lighter, it was a full 20 inches longer than the actual magazine. I had to trim about 8" off the new spring to allow it enough room to compress and expose the load port, but it works perfect now!

I'm certain the fly on the wall was fully entertained watching me try to snake all that spring into the magazine, but it's there and it works. FLY.
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