Uberti Mfg. Colt 1860 Army Wedge Non-Fit

Discussion in 'Handguns' started by straightcut, Feb 18, 2017.

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  1. Feb 20, 2017 #21

    necchi

    necchi

    necchi

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    Yeah Bob,, that's the gap and the wedge WON'T fit,, take a good look at it again.
    Seem's a few guy's here responded without looking at the photo and/or reading the topic.
    :shocked2: :headslap:
     
  2. Feb 20, 2017 #22

    hawkeye2

    hawkeye2

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    Take the material from the barrel, not the frame. Follow MD's advise in previous posts.
     
  3. Feb 21, 2017 #23

    Flintlock_bob

    Flintlock_bob

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    The gun was assembled when you bought it? The wedge was in it? Can you ask the seller how he got the wedge in?
     
  4. Feb 21, 2017 #24

    M. De Land

    M. De Land

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    Do it in the lathe if possible as a light cut with a sharp tool bit properly relieved will stress the barrel lug far less than a mill cutter will and you'll still have to set it up between centers to keep square with bore axis.
    I have both a vertical as well as horizontal mill and the lathe will be a better more easily set up as well as stress-less tool for the job.
    Work on the barrel lug if possible.
    Also the pins can be shortened a bit as well as the holes made deeper in the barrel lug. All they do is hold lateral alignment.
     
  5. Feb 21, 2017 #25

    M. De Land

    M. De Land

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    Do the numbers match in the barrel and frame, if present?
     
  6. Feb 21, 2017 #26

    M. De Land

    M. De Land

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    I need to mention a bit here that will be helpful that you probably don't know having not done this before.
    The amount you take off the barrel lug to close the gap needs to be balanced with slot,wedge and arbor hole depth modifications to maintain a level barrel gap.
    This is where the arbor depth comes into play. If you get one or the other out of adjustment than the gap between the cylinder will not be square with the bore. It will show a gap tightening at the top or bottom. The bore will be out of alignment with each cylinder. Most all are a bit out one direction or an other but if excessive it is not going to be good for function or accuracy.
    In my opinion this is a pour method to adjust for vertical point of impact which should be done with sight mods only.
     
  7. Feb 21, 2017 #27

    straightcut

    straightcut

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    M.D., thank you for your very helpful posts! I think I'll print them off and bring them to the machinist, so he can read them exactly as written.

    Yes, the numbers do match on barrel and frame, so that's positive. Still, this is getting more complex with each post!

    When I install the arbor into the barrel with the barrel twisted 45 degrees, it seems to stop at the same point as it would if the barrel were seated normally (aligned with the two pins), so I think this does not have a short arbor. Does that mean that If I take material off the barrel side, I'll need to also take the same amount off the arbor (or bore that arbor hole deeper)?
     
  8. Feb 21, 2017 #28

    M. De Land

    M. De Land

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    The arbor hole in the barrel assembly will need to be end milled the same amount deeper that you removed from the barrel lug if the barrel/cylinder gap is uniform at present. If the gap is tighter at the top than a bit less than is removed from the barrel lug.You can eye ball the gap pretty accurately but a feeler gauge will be needed to get it precise. I've never seen any gaP on any revolver that is perfect but get it as even as possible.
    If you have plenty of meat on the end of the arbor from the slot end than it can be removed from the arbor instead of making the hole deeper.
    Removal from the arbor will be more simple but you will want a good .150-.200 at least from end of slot to end of arbor.
    Mine (60 Colt Pietta) measures .140 and has been perfectly safe. The 62 Police I have measures .190.
     
  9. Feb 21, 2017 #29

    M. De Land

    M. De Land

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    It just seems complex because it takes a lot of words to paint a picture but if I had you in my shop it would all be perfectly clear to you in a matter of seconds.
    The work to be done though takes some time,mostly on set up as is usual with machining practice one is not jigged up for.
    It has been done many times with nothing more than good file work. :wink:
    As I've said so many times ( It takes more time to make the part to make the part (jig or gun piece) than it does to do the repair.
     
  10. Feb 21, 2017 #30

    denster

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    M.D. has done a good job of explaining how you would set the barrel back.
    One thing that hasn't been mentioned is that by doing so you will need to make a new wedge. You also may need to remove some material from the rear of the slot in the arbor if after set back it stands proud of the barrel slot.
    Im curious about the wedge. If it came out of that slot then it should go back in. You are inserting it from the left (screw) side of the gun? Also if the wedge spring doesn't have a bevel on top to push it down it can interfere trying to go through the arbor slot.
     
  11. Feb 21, 2017 #31

    M. De Land

    M. De Land

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    When your machinist tightens the barrel gap it some times can effect the hand function if it were tight when the gap was wide. Just feel for a bind at the top of the stroke. If it binds at the end of the hammer cock than the nose will need to be dressed a bit.
     
  12. Feb 22, 2017 #32

    don hepler

    don hepler

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    Okay, I've done a lot of work getting the fitting of the wedge and gap corrected. I'm not going into a lot of details. First look down in the arbor hole, to see if it has a washer, or spacer in there. I have spacers in one of mine. Clean the arbor hole out, really good. Place the barrel on the arbor, but have the bottom lug swiveled at an angle. Now rotate it back down and see if it lines up with the frame, where it fits on the two pins. In a perfect fit, it will rotate down in alignment to the front of the frame (of course the two pins won't let it rotate, but forget about the two pins, just the alignment of lower barrel to frame). If the arbor hole is too deep, it will rotate around and hit the front of the frame.

    Start there and then we can go forward, with a cure.

    If you bought it with the wedge in it, then there is no reason why it shouldn't go back. Forget all the endmilling an filing for a minute.

    All the other information that you need is in Zonie's reply.
     
  13. Feb 23, 2017 #33

    M. De Land

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    Well, the first thing is to determine how much you want to close the gap and then address all the areas mentioned that will effect that goal with a harmonious final result .
    HW's suggestion is a great way to get a visual on arbor and hole relationship.
    Both the arbor and hole will need depth and length measurements made with a caliper and plug gauge to be accurate.
    Many arbor holes are not square bottomed and this needs to be taken into account, however when milled to correct depth with an end, end mill, a ledge will be created at the end taper in the circumference of the hole that will act just the same. This end taper in the arbor hole is one of the reasons a set screw in the arbor end is a good idea instead of a steel plug or washer. I never liked the set screw idea much as I don't want to weaken the end of the arbor slot.
     
  14. Feb 24, 2017 #34

    don hepler

    don hepler

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    You are right. I want to determine if there is anything in the arbor hole that might prevent the arbor from seating and allow the wedge to go back in.

    If the wedge was in the pistol, when he bought it, then it should go back in now. Once we get that back together, then we can take a look at the gap. With the wedge out....the gap means nothing.

    After 40+ years of machining and gun smith work, this is how I proceed. Not by starting out cutting and filing. His first sentence, in this post said, it was assembled, when he bought it.
     
  15. Feb 24, 2017 #35

    Flintlock_bob

    Flintlock_bob

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    +1 :bow:
     
  16. Feb 25, 2017 #36

    don hepler

    don hepler

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    Thank you kind sir. :thumbsup:
     
  17. Feb 26, 2017 #37

    straightcut

    straightcut

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    Sorry for the delay in getting back to this post and for not answering the excellent question, "was the wedge fully inserted when I bought it?"

    Unfortunately, with advancing age, I don't recall. I'd swear that it was, but not on a Bible. I bought it a couple of years ago and every once-in-a-while pull it out, try to insert the wedge again, scratch my head and set it back down trying to think of the solution. Fortunately, with this post and more knowledgeable help here, I think I'm getting closer to taking this to the range.

    I have tried to check the arbor length and it seems about right in that, when I insert the barrel on the arbor with the barrel offset, the barrel sits beyond the water table (frame below the cylinder) by the slightest amount (as in maybe .003-005"). When I look down the arbor hole, there are no washers or spacers and there is no set screw in the end of the arbor.
     
  18. Feb 26, 2017 #38

    M. De Land

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    I'd take that wedge and mark it up with some kind of contrasting lipstick or marking pencil and lightly tap it to the slot with a piece of wood, retrieve it and see where the contact points are.
    Might be an obstruction some where in there or wedge deformation.
     
  19. Feb 26, 2017 #39

    hawkeye2

    hawkeye2

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    That's excellent advise and I would go a step further in that I would take the screw out of the way to simplify things and check the wedge fit in the barrel off the gun first and then in the arbor too.

    Straightcut with the barrel going beyond the end of the frame if the gun were to go together you should be able to draw up the barrel till you notice the barrel/cylinder gap being less at the top of the barrel. With a .003" - .005" missmatch the wedge should go in.

    FWITW I have a couple of Pietta "Colts" that require a firm tap on the muzzle with a nylon hammer to get the wedge started. They are unfired and if I ever get around to shooting them I'll address the issue.
     
  20. Feb 26, 2017 #40

    Zonie

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    The .003-.005 value sounds about right.

    As I said before, the problem is the wedge is slightly too wide, front to rear.

    Get a flat fine tooth metal cutting file and put the wedge on the file with the front surface against the teeth.

    Using a little downforce, pull the wedge towards the tang end of the file.

    Repeat this a few times, giving a visual look to see that the file is cutting away a little material.

    Try the wedge in the gun. If it doesn't pass thru the wedge slot, repeat the filing process.

    When the wedge goes thru the arbor slot and begins to enter the barrel wedge hole on the far side, (you can check this with a flashlight), lightly tap the left hand edge of the wedge with a screw driver a few times.

    Some people think the wedge should go in so far that the end of the wedge is flush with the right hand side of the barrel but this isn't necessary for it to be doing its job.
    It must however have some engagement with the barrel slot on the right hand side.

    As for the clearance between the cylinder and the rear of the barrel, as already mentioned, having a gap of .005-.010 is ideal but shooting it with a larger gap won't damage anything. It will just cause more side blast and perhaps a loss of some accuracy.
     

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