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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys. This may be one of those times where I answer my own question as I'm asking it. But here goes.

I just got a brand new MKIII 22/45 (model 10107). I unfortunately have not had time to take it to the range yet, so the best I've been able to do is playing around with it while watching Red Dawn and Roadhouse.

My question is about what to expect as far as tightness during the break in period. The bolt is extremely hard to pull back when the hammer is not cocked. Its not like its frozen up or something, but it takes some serious force to pull it back and lock it. Once the hammer has been cocked, the bolt is much much easier to pull back.

Is this just the normal break in period and this is something that I should expect will loosen up after time and shooting?
The bolt can be released by pulling back on the bolt while pressing the bolt stop button.
Additionally, the bolt stop button is extremely tight as well and is almost impossible to press down with my thumb. I can press it down eventually with my off hand, but this seems very awkward. Is this normal as well?

When I've watched some videos on Youtube of people shooting their new 22/45s, they are able to pull back the bolt to chamber a round with very minimal effort (in fact they use the tips of their fingers to pull it back, something that would be impossible on my gun) Same thing with the bolt stop button: it appears it takes very little force to press the button and release the bolt, and these are on guns that are supposedly new and unfired, just like mine.

I guess I'm just bored and wishing I could be at the range, but if anyone has input on these issues I would appreciate it. And no I haven't taken it down and completely cleaned the gun yet either.
Wow, so much for not being long winded.
Thanks for any thoughts
 

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It's not at all unusual for a new Mark to be tight like that, right out of the box, but things will smooth up with a bit of shooting. Marks don't really need a "break in" period, as such, but it does help to use high velocity ammo to start, rather than standard velocity. Also helps to do just what you've been doing - dry firing - to get the action smoothed up.
 

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My question is about what to expect as far as tightness during the break in period. The bolt is extremely hard to pull back when the hammer is not cocked. Its not like its frozen up or something, but it takes some serious force to pull it back and lock it. Once the hammer has been cocked, the bolt is much much easier to pull back.

Is this just the normal break in period and this is something that I should expect will loosen up after time and shooting?
Partly but very little. When you pull the bolt to reset the hammer, part of the bolt pushes on the face of the hammer while it is vertical. As the hammer moves to ready position, it must compress the spring located in the main spring housing which is the lever that pulls out from the back of the grip frame and is attached to the breakdown pin. It’s simple physics; the hammer offers the most resistance to the bolt initially due to the contact angle and this force decreases as the bolt slides across the face of the hammer and the contact angle increases. This may get a little better with time but will never go away… you will get used to it though!

Additionally, the bolt stop button is extremely tight as well and is almost impossible to press down with my thumb. I can press it down eventually with my off hand, but this seems very awkward. Is this normal as well?
Now, this will get better but how long it takes will depend on how you bring your bolt to battery. I almost always pull my bolt back slightly, release the bolt stop and release the bolt. There is no compelling reason to do this; it’s just my style. My bolt release is still a little on the tight side after more than 25,000 rounds but that it because of my habits. Use the release directly to bring the bolt to battery and it will eventually smooth out the contact surfaces which, in turn, will make the release work more smoothly and easily.

I love the 22/45, it is a fun and accurate firearm. Be very careful the first time you disassemble it and be sure to follow the instructions carefully until you’ve mastered the technique; it can be a bit tricky. I strongly suggest you clean her before you take her out for the first time and, if possible, use a better ammo (maybe CCI Mini-Mags) for the first several hundred rounds. Enjoy!
 

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Just keep shooting it. Unless it's a lemon, eventually it will become reliable. Mine needed a few hundred rounds before it stopped wasting rounds. My bolt release was a bit tight, but not too bad. My problem was occasional FTE, but I never tested various ammunition, just Winchester white box bulk (and CCI, which was way more reliable).
Even my SR9c needed some break-in before it became reliable to a sufficient point.
 

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The bolt stop button is harder to press down if an empty mag is in the gun because of the need to compress the spring. my new 22/45 has a different manual of arms than my MKIII target. Maybe I'll change my mind eventually but for now I'm going to try to live with the differences rather than doing mods to the gun.

My 22/45 was quite tight out of the box (I think it my have been sitting for some time) but a field strip and lube helped and after a short range trip to verify function it is starting to feel real nice.

As a general rule I never dry-fire a rimfire gun. What is Ruger's position on dry-fire?
 

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Well... If you are bored, if you have not already done so, field strip it, clean it thoroughly and re-lubricate it.

I shoot very inexpensive American Eagle lead round nose ammo, but I have read many, many accounts of guns that were not reliable until at least 100 or so CCI Mini-mags were run through them. If nothing else, they make a satisfying crack when fired!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
All good information. Thank you. That is mostly what I had been assuming, but its good to have reassurance :D

My overall experience in firearms is mostly rifle and some shotguns. Not to say I'm not farmiliar with pistols, but I've owned many rifles and shotguns, and only owned 1 pistol previous (Walther PPS) to my current 22/45. So I think I do prefer the more traditional, slignshot mod type action, so I may persue that mod. I think eventually the mag disconnect removal and some new, brighter sights might be in order too.

First things first are to shoot this thing! Friday can't come soon enough.

Thanks for helping feed the obsession guys...
 

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As a general rule I never dry-fire a rimfire gun. What is Ruger's position on dry-fire?
From the Ruger website:
Can I dry fire my Mark III pistol?
Yes. The Mark III has a firing pin stop that prevents the firing pin from contacting the rear of the barrel and damaging the edge of the chamber. If you are going to dry fire the pistol extensively, the stop pin and firing pin will eventually wear and contact could occur, and we recommend replacing both the firing pin and the firing pin stop from time to time. You should also monitor the contact of the firing pin with the rear of the barrel.

I've been dry firing Marks for many, many years and more times than I care to count and have never worn out the stop pin or firing pin. I'm sure it's possible, but has never been an issue for me.
 

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Excessive dry firing can cause damage to the stop pin. Here's a pin from a customer's Mark III that did not have all that much dry firing on it (according to him).



I have seen many like it. Plus, notice how the pin is not broken and would appear in place and intact - that is until you see this ----



The bottom line is to periodically inspect the firing pin stop pin in your Ruger 22 Auto. They can be damaged or broken and appear normal. If you see any wear, replace it before the damage becomes more serious.

R,
Bullseye
 
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