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Old 04-06-2011, 11:48 PM
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Default Inside Early Hand Ejectors (before the trigger rebound slide...)

I had the sideplate off a really early hand ejector today and decided to offer a belated answer to a question that was posed when I showed one of these guns several months ago. At that time I didn't have a good picture to show how the trigger rebound worked in early I-frames.

In the first decade (1896-1906), hand ejectors did not have the trigger rebound slide that most of us expect to see when we take the sideplate off a S&W revolver. Instead, they had a second flat spring that originates in the grip and which is displaced up and to the rear when the hammer is cocked or the trigger pulled. Then as the trigger is released, the tension in the spring pushes it back into position.

The two small-frame revolver lines (M-frame and I-frame) used a design in which a single spring directly drives the trigger return and tensions the hand. Here's a picture of what you see inside a .32 Hand Ejector, Model of 1903. This one was shipped in 1904.




The trigger return spring is anchored at the bottom of the grip frame by the strain screw passing through it. The upper end winds over a pin attached to the hammer, behind the hand, then then bears on a small pawl attached to the back of the hand.


The same design is seen in the tiny M-frame Ladysmith: (That's a reflection on the spring, not rust.)




This small-frame design differs from the trigger return mechanism used in the K-frame revolvers before the advent of the trigger rebound slide with its interior coil spring. Here's a .38 M&P 1902, First change. The shorter flat spring drives a pivoting mechanism that affects the trigger through a lever.




All N-frame revolvers utilize the trigger rebound slide. The rebound slide system was in place by 1906, and the first N-frame did not appear until 1908.


Just for reference, here's a picture of a rebound slide mechanism. I borrowed this from the thread about the cleaned up kit gun I started a couple of hours ago.




Here endeth the lesson.
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Old 04-07-2011, 12:52 AM
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David, Excellent post! A very good example of where a picture is worth a 1,000 words! Ed.
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Old 04-07-2011, 01:50 AM
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Indeed, thank you DCWilson for taking the time and trouble to show these.

Was there any difference in this part of the Mechanism, from the 1899 to the 1902 first change, as seen in your next-to-last image?

While I knew of the presence of the second, smaller leaf Spring on the 1899 and 1902 Models, I have never removed the Side Plate to look and see the details.

Seems quite elegent all in all.


What are the plugs or Rivets seen in the Hammer body of the Lady Smith, and, of the 1902 1st change 'M&P'?

Last edited by Oyeboteb; 04-07-2011 at 01:53 AM.
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Old 04-07-2011, 02:06 AM
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Thanks David!

I've never had the opportunity to see the innards of some of these and the visual aids are greatly appreciated!
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Old 04-07-2011, 02:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oyeboteb View Post
Indeed, thank you DCWilson for taking the time and trouble to show these.

Was there any difference in this part of the Mechanism, from the 1899 to the 1902 first change, as seen in your next-to-last image?

While I knew of the presence of the second, smaller leaf Spring on the 1899 and 1902 Models, I have never removed the Side Plate to look and see the details.

Seems quite elegent all in all.


What are the plugs or Rivets seen in the Hammer body of the Lady Smith, and, of the 1902 1st change 'M&P'?

I have never had the opportunity to look inside an 1899, but I would imagine the mechanics of the trigger return are the same as in the 1902. Someone please correct me if that's not right.

For the life of me I can't recall the name of those inserts in the hammer body, but they function as spacers. Somebody talked about them on the forum within the last week kor 10 days, so my memory is collapsing even faster than I feared. The inserts stand proud of he hammer by .001" or so on either side, and they contact the frame and sideplate interiors to keep the sides of the hammer from contacting immobile parts and becoming marred.
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Old 04-07-2011, 03:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DCWilson View Post
For the life of me I can't recall the name of those inserts in the hammer body, but they function as spacers. Somebody talked about them on the forum within the last week kor 10 days, .
I think that was me...lol...chafing bushings I think they are called
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Old 04-07-2011, 08:56 AM
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Yes, that's right.

I'm trying to forget that whole hammer value discussion. As my grandmother used to say, "Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt."
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Old 04-07-2011, 09:19 AM
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Thank you DC

For giving some of us a chance to see what's inside a revolver many of us will not have an opportunity to own,let alone see inside the side plate. The inner workings are so fascinating to me. The evolution of firearms in the 20th century was amazing!
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Old 04-07-2011, 10:27 AM
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Yes David, the 1899 is the same, see below. This one is vintage Jan. 1901.
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Old 04-07-2011, 10:44 AM
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Just for comparison....
Similar solution for similar problem, same era, two different companies. (Colt M1892)

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Old 01-20-2014, 09:35 PM
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Default Inside Early Hand Ejectors (before the trigger rebound slide...)

lets see if this works
i'm resurrecting this thread to see if anyone has a side by side picture of the internals in the cocked position to compare to the fired position or at rest.
thanks guys!

Last edited by Michael J. Spangler; 01-20-2014 at 11:07 PM.
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Old 01-21-2014, 12:38 AM
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should be a sticky!!!
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Old 01-21-2014, 05:54 AM
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Quite interesting David and thank you for posting all the detailed photos. I have never had the pleasure or opportunity to work on one of those old beauties, but now I know what to expect if I ever do.

Looks like the old lock work would be durable enough, but how smooth do they function?

Chief38
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Old 01-21-2014, 06:13 AM
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I shot my 1899 just a couple months ago, and recall it was reasonably smooth, but somewhat stiffer in double action. Probably around 10 - 12 lb pull. Single action seemed the same as any K Frame from Pre-War vintage.
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Old 01-21-2014, 06:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chief38 View Post

Looks like the old lock work would be durable enough, but how smooth do they function?

Chief38

My .38 M&P 1902/first change is a delight to shoot. I actually think the rebound slide system, however reliable it is, has the potential to feel rough or draggy in DA operation because of the grime that can get down inside the slide. I have also found the occasional oversize coil spring in rebound slides that a DIY gunsmith did not realize was .01" too wide. Now those are rough guns!

My early M1903 .32 HEs (a compact fixed sight model and two target revolvers) work just fine with the flat trigger return spring.

Ladysmiths are a constant irritation to me because I keep buying specimens that are capable of reliable operation only if they get some TLC. In first and second models the work has involved problems with the foremost end of the trigger return spring, which I have found in some guns to be either worn (too short, and capable of disengaging from the pawl on the hand) or already "repaired" by previous owners (too long, which does astonishing things to the inner surface of the sideplate when the spring flexes to the side rather than simply up and down in the designed plane of operation). These worries don't apply to the third models, of course, which had the rebound slide system. But then the third model Ladysmiths have other potential problems involving hands, forcing cones, bent center pins in the ejector rods, and so forth.

Unsolicited advice:If you are thinking about setting up an Orphan Ladysmith Rescue Station, make sure you have the emotional strength to deal with disappointment and enough calluses on your fingers to protect you from jabs, slices, pinches and all the other things that can happen to fingers trying to work with small parts under more spring tension than you might have predicted.
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Old 01-21-2014, 09:30 AM
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My only problem with Ladysmiths is that I have to remove my finger from the trigger in order for the mechanism to full reset. Just not enough room between the trigger guard and the trigger to leave my finger in place. Mechanics are tiny clones of the Model 99s and 02s.
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Old 01-21-2014, 09:53 AM
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David: Very clear pictures of the early mechanisms. Although not mentioned above, the pictures also show the difference in the earlier cylinder stops, which simply pivot about a pin without the reciprocating and pivoting motion of the later cylinder stops which caused the appearance of the 5th screw in the trigger guard.
These early guns also used a single stage double action system where the double action worked entirely off the sear strut on the hammer. The difference between the early and later double action can be seen clearly in the picture of the gun with the rebound slide, where the double action starts on the sear strut, then transitions to a notch in the rear of the trigger working directly on the hammer. That is what gives the later S&W revolvers the super smooth double action.
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Last edited by Skeetr57; 01-21-2014 at 10:05 AM.
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Old 01-21-2014, 10:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deadin View Post
Just for comparison....
Similar solution for similar problem, same era, two different companies. (Colt M1892)

Great photo. Those who are unfamiliar with Colt interiors should note the untensioned leaf spring attached to the rear of the hand. The original Colt right-side sideplate had a pin that stuck out for that spring to push against. Reinstalling a sideplate involves sliding the unit into position from the left so that the pin can snag the hand spring and keep it properly positioned when the sideplate is pressed down and tightened. Two of three early Colts that came to me had broken or bent hand springs. Fortunately it is a simple repair, involving either manufacturing your own spring or just buying a new hand from Numrich. They still had some the last time I needed one.
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Old 01-21-2014, 04:31 PM
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David

Here are some pictures of the levering mechanism. This first picture shows the parts
from two revolvers, along with their springs.



This next picture shows the mechanism disassembled, so that you see both pieces.
The inner piece has a little roller on the end of it, and that fits inside the trigger.



This next picture shows the inner lever inserted into the rear of the trigger.



The last picture shows the mechanism assembly inserted into the rear of the trigger.



Regards, Mike Priwer

Last edited by mikepriwer; 01-21-2014 at 04:34 PM.
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Old 01-21-2014, 04:57 PM
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Thanks, Mike. Those pictures do make it clearer how the whole assembly worked.
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Old 01-21-2014, 05:13 PM
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Thanks David et al. I just bought (one hour ago) my first 1902 1st change in beautiful shape. I'm dying to take a peek under the hood. I have some questions about the cylinder stop, but they'll wait until I can start a thread about my new gun (serial #17332) complete with pictures. Thanks again.
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