Gun Restoration Bloomington IL

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Freedom Firearms
309451583
1005 Teegan
Normal, IL
 
Lushers Sales & Service
309846331
1205 Sandburg Dr
Bloomington, IL
 
Sonix Industries
(309) 452-8599
1315 Clover Ln
Normal, IL
 
Heritage Hobbies Inc
309661000
207 Mecherle Dr
Bloomington, IL
 
Langhoff & Co
309828945
814 W Jackson St
Bloomington, IL
 
Goldsboroughs Shooters Supply
309829253
1004 E Lincoln St
Bloomington, IL
 
Smileys Sports Shop Inc
2049 Ireland Grove Rd
Bloomington, IL
 
Dgw Co
(309) 379-4330
6125 E 1175 North Rd
Bloomington, IL
 
Miller Brothers Sports
309242033
1709 B Linda Ln
Normal, IL
 
Flatiron Gun Repair
309663113
2049 Ireland Grove Rd
Bloomington, IL
 

One Way to Bring an Old Gun Back to Life

I have always looked for ways to save money and gain skills. I have the firearms basics covered so I rarely buy firearms these days.  But I do watch for bargains.  Sometimes a little TLC with simple tools will let you bring an old gun back to life without investing a lot of money.  One such find was a side by side 12 gauge marked “W. Richards” It is not from the fine English gun maker Wesley Richards, it is a cheap knock off copy probably made in Belgium about a hundred years ago.  What attracted me were the exposed hammers and the $75 price tag.  I had been looking for an exposed hammer side by side for some time.  New ones are priced in the $350 range. This example was clean, unpitted by rust inside or out.  The action was reasonably tight, the stock has been knocked around but is complete, and the hammers fired. The barrels had not been bulged or bent. But I did find a broken firing pin on the left side. I pointed that out to the owner who had it up for sale (who didn’t seem to know much about the piece) and brought it home for $50.
 
I took the old pins out with the aid of a small screw driver (just unscrew the retaining screw and push the pins back toward the hammers until they come out) and found that they were an unmatched pair.  At least one of the pins had already been replaced with an imperfect match.  The left one was broken off short, the right appeared the have a broken tip – probably from the action being closed with the firing pins extended
 
The pins were not straight pins such as could be replaced with a nail.  They are made from a narrow rod that strikes the primer attached to a larger cylinder which the hammer strikes to drive the whole pin forward.  The larger cylinder has a rectangular cut out that the tip of the retaining screw fits in preventing the pin from falling out of the shotgun.  The pins could be recreated easily enough but the cut out was not something easily accomplished with hand tools so I was now in the market for a pair of firing pins.
 
I looked online and came up empty.  But a local gunsmith thought he might have something that would fit.  A few minutes looking over his box of odd pins salvaged from innumerable repair projects turned up just one pin that almost matched.  It was the right shape but the diameter was too large.  He gave it to me gratis.  Yes, I’ll go back and do more business there for sure.  This is also a lesson in saving parts from other things.
 
Back at home I secured the replacement pin in my electric drill chuck and worked it carefully back and forth on its side against a flat file gradually decreasing the diameter of the cylinder.  When it fit the recess, I reversed the pin in the chuck and repeated the process reducing the diameter of the small rod until it too fit the firing pin hole.  Yippee!  I now had one replacement pin.
 
I then took the old pin with...

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