Lock problem or trigger problem?

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jmelby77

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I have a CVA 32 my dad built for me as a kid. I shot it last month for the first time in 20 plus years. Everything went fine, no problems.

Last weekend I shot it and had problems. Every other time I set the set trigger and attempted to pull the trigger it would just release the set trigger. Then I’d set the trigger again and pull the trigger and it would fire.

I brought it home and cleaned it. I took the lock off and cleaned it this time. (I didn’t do this after shooting last month.) The sear was almost impossible to move with my fingers. I gave it a liberal coat of WD-40 and let it sit. That seemed to fox the sear. It now moves easily and I can make the hammer engage by moving the sear with my hands again. I expected that to solve my problem. It did not.

So I assume there’s something going on with the trigger mechanism? Anyone have any advise? The person I’d normally ask is my dad but he passed away in April (and let’s be honest he’d probably just fix it for me).

Anyway, I’m guessing the next step is to remove the trigger mechanism. Oh and in the lock there’s a little screw with a coil type spring on it. Anybody know what that does? I included a picture of the lock.

In case anyone on here knew him, my dad was Ray Melby.
 

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The small screw with the spring allows for the "dept" of the tumbler notch to be adjusted. The angle of the tumbler notch and sear engagement is critical. If the angle is less than 90 degrees you have to "fight" the main spring to release the hammer if the angle is greater than 90 degrees the hammer will push off and not hold. Since hard trigger pulls are safe and locks that will push off are not, almost all commerical locks have angles less than 90 degrees. The adjustment screw will allow you to vary the dept of engagement. What you have is the first time you release the set trigger the sear moves part way out of the notch, the second time it clears the notch. The best "fix" would be to disassemble the lock, stone the tumbler notch so that the contact angle is 90 degrees. This could take several attempts to get it right. The simpler "fix" would be to adjust the screw so that the sear doesn't go in as deep. Also from your photo the top of your nipple is some what flat you can "sharpen " it to get better ignition by removing the nipple chucking it into a drill and using a tool stone the get a sharp edge.
 

jmelby77

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The small screw with the spring allows for the "dept" of the tumbler notch to be adjusted. The angle of the tumbler notch and sear engagement is critical. If the angle is less than 90 degrees you have to "fight" the main spring to release the hammer if the angle is greater than 90 degrees the hammer will push off and not hold. Since hard trigger pulls are safe and locks that will push off are not, almost all commerical locks have angles less than 90 degrees. The adjustment screw will allow you to vary the dept of engagement. What you have is the first time you release the set trigger the sear moves part way out of the notch, the second time it clears the notch. The best "fix" would be to disassemble the lock, stone the tumbler notch so that the contact angle is 90 degrees. This could take several attempts to get it right. The simpler "fix" would be to adjust the screw so that the sear doesn't go in as deep. Also from your photo the top of your nipple is some what flat you can "sharpen " it to get better ignition by removing the nipple chucking it into a drill and using a tool stone the get a sharp edge.
Thank you. Looks like I’ll be taking it apart this week and doing some adjustments. By stone, do you mean file? I’m fairly handy with tools, I built a kayak during Covid lockdown, but I’m not sure I have the courage to start filing away on my gun lock yet.

Do you have any idea why it worked fine last time I shot it and now it doesn’t? I honestly didn’t shoot it that much as a teen but my dad was meticulous about keeping his gun in good condition. I’m working on getting what is probably the first 100 rounds fired through it.
 
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I have a CVA 32 my dad built for me as a kid. I shot it last month for the first time in 20 plus years. Everything went fine, no problems.

Last weekend I shot it and had problems. Every other time I set the set trigger and attempted to pull the trigger it would just release the set trigger. Then I’d set the trigger again and pull the trigger and it would fire.

I brought it home and cleaned it. I took the lock off and cleaned it this time. (I didn’t do this after shooting last month.) The sear was almost impossible to move with my fingers. I gave it a liberal coat of WD-40 and let it sit. That seemed to fox the sear. It now moves easily and I can make the hammer engage by moving the sear with my hands again. I expected that to solve my problem. It did not.

So I assume there’s something going on with the trigger mechanism? Anyone have any advise? The person I’d normally ask is my dad but he passed away in April (and let’s be honest he’d probably just fix it for me).

Anyway, I’m guessing the next step is to remove the trigger mechanism. Oh and in the lock there’s a little screw with a coil type spring on it. Anybody know what that does? I included a picture of the lock.

In case anyone on here knew him, my dad was Ray Melby.
Remove the trigger assembly and see if it functions properly out of the gun. If it’s sticky or delayed, spray it with carburetor cleaner, let it set then blow it off. A light oiling then.
 
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Trigger is pushing up into the seat. I always have to grind some meat off the top of the trigger.
You can also try shimming the trigger plate so it doesn’t engage the sear arm on the lock too early.
I gave it a liberal coat of WD-40 and let it sit. That seemed to fox the sear. It now moves easily and I can make the hammer engage by moving the sear with my hands again.
WD40 has a lot of uses, but it is a poor lubricant at best. Suggest you use a proper gun oil for lubrication.
 

Frontier's

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The problem with shimming the trigger is the tang bolt, often is out of alignment and cross threads. Removing the metal is way easier.
 
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What Ohio Ramrod meant by "stoneing" is to use a honing stone - like what is used to sharpen knives. Not a file. Smooth the notch and sear and get the angle right. Also make sure the parts can pivot nicely - they can't bind or the set trigger won't work right.
 

jmelby77

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You can also try shimming the trigger plate so it doesn’t engage the sear arm on the lock too early.

WD40 has a lot of uses, but it is a poor lubricant at best. Suggest you use a proper gun oil for lubrication.
I cleaned the wd 40 off and applied RIG once I was apply to move it a little bit. My dad taught me to apply a liberal coat of RIG to the entire gun after cleaning.
 

jmelby77

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As SDSmif says above, please don't use WD40 on your rifle. 40 years ago I used it on everything and I've lived to regret it. It's a solvent, and repeated use will leave a gummy, non-lubricating residue.
I only used it bc it wouldn’t move at all and I could get it in place I couldn’t smoosh the RIG into. I did wipe it off and apply RIG afterwards.
 
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The problem with shimming the trigger is the tang bolt, often is out of alignment and cross threads. Removing the metal is way easier.
You are correct if you go overboard with the shimming, but with the gun not being shot in 20 years, it’s likely the wood has shrunk a bit and/or the tang bolt was over tightened and crushed the wood. For someone that’s not sure, a quick shim will let them know they are on the right corrective action path before removing any metal.
 

beardedhorse

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CVA made a deluxe lock which had the set screw in the tumbler to adjust the amount of sear engagement. I used own on a target pistol in 1974. It might take some shortening of that screw if backing it up or out doesn't allow the sear to engage. The lock should have a fly or detent, also. One could take a little off the top of the trigger bar depending on whether it is a simple trigger or double set. WD -40 means formula 40 was used for the 'water displacement". No reputable locksmith will recommend using it to lubricate locks.
 

jmelby77

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CVA made a deluxe lock which had the set screw in the tumbler to adjust the amount of sear engagement. I used own on a target pistol in 1974. It might take some shortening of that screw if backing it up or out doesn't allow the sear to engage. The lock should have a fly or detent, also. One could take a little off the top of the trigger bar depending on whether it is a simple trigger or double set. WD -40 means formula 40 was used for the 'water displacement". No reputable locksmith will recommend using it to lubricate locks.
CVA made a deluxe lock which had the set screw in the tumbler to adjust the amount of sear engagement. I used own on a target pistol in 1974. It might take some shortening of that screw if backing it up or out doesn't allow the sear to engage. The lock should have a fly or detent, also. One could take a little off the top of the trigger bar depending on whether it is a simple trigger or double set. WD -40 means formula 40 was used for the 'water displacement". No reputable locksmith will recommend using it to lubricate locks.
CVA made a deluxe lock which had the set screw in the tumbler to adjust the amount of sear engagement. I used own on a target pistol in 1974. It might take some shortening of that screw if backing it up or out doesn't allow the sear to engage. The lock should have a fly or detent, also. One could take a little off the top of the trigger bar depending on whether it is a simple trigger or double set. WD -40 means formula 40 was used for the 'water displacement". No reputable locksmith will recommend using it to lubricate locks.
Thank you, i ended up taking everything out of the stock. I found a traditions manual on adjusting set triggers and the sear adjustment screw. After reading and looking at my lock. I realized the sear screw needed adjustment. The sear was sitting too far into the tumbler groove (I think that’s what it’s called). Put it all back together and now it works perfect. There is a good amount of wear on the sear. Should’ve taken a picture. But it is working like it should now.

I only used the wd 40 bc I thought the sear was froze up and I could get it in the crevasses. However, now that I have a better understanding of how the lock mechanism works, I realize that was not the problem. The WD-40 has been cleaned off and replaced with RIG.

Anyway, thank you.
 

jmelby77

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Thank you everyone, I got it fixed. I ended up taking everything apart. The trigger and set trigger worked fine. Ended up needed to adjust the sear screw. It now lines up like it should and everything works like it should. Thanks everyone for providing guidance and giving me the courage to take it apart. I now have a much better understanding of how the parts work together to function which I think is a good thing. I know my dad would be proud of me for fixing it myself. Don’t worry, I won’t use WD 40 again.
 
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