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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone. New member here. I recently bought a MK III Standard with 4.75" barrel. First handgun purchase in 16-17 years. Bought it used from my local shop. It's in awesome condition and works great except for the bolt stop.

I'll try and be as clear with the issues I'm having as I can. I searched the internet for answers and after a couple of tries to get it to work I decided to come to the experts.

Basically the bolt stop doesn't hold the bolt open after the last round. Also it won't engage after inserting an empty mag and retracting the bolt. Also if I engage the slide stop manually and then insert a full magazine I can't slingshot the bolt either. Have to depress the slide stop to chamber a round. I have fieldstripped the gun twice and given it a bath with gun scrubber and lubed as normal. Now the funny thing is with the barrel off the frame and inserting a magazine the bolt stop with rise up no problem. As near as I can tell with the gun assembled there isn't any binding anywhere. There is a tiny burr or chip out of the top corner of the bolt stop but that doesn't seem to be the issue since the bolt stop doesn't rise up when the mag is inserted. I also have two magazines and it does this with both. I'm ready to just buy a new bolt stop assembly and put it in and see if that works.

Besides this issue the pistol works awesomely. I've put about 550 rounds through it in the last three days and it's only had three jams which were probably due to weak ammo.

I could just take it back to the shop where I got it, but their "gunsmith" is even more clueless than I am. I'd rather deal with it myself if I can.

Thanks for any advice anyone here can offer. Hopefully my description of the problem is clear.
 

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If the gunsmith is unsure I would call Ruger, but that's me.
I'm sure some one with alot more knowledge than me will chime in.
 

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This situation may be one where the top of the bolt catch is actually bent slightly outward more than it should be, which may also correspond with the chip you've described, and therefor due to the misaligned part the receiver is actually impeding the stop lever from elevating by pressure from the magazine follower button. Is there any rub mark on the inside of the receiver where it would meet with the bolt stop? If so... then there is likely your answer to the mystery. The top of a normal bolt stop lever should appear slightly bent outward.

Hope this helps.

R,
Bullseye
 

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Make sure it's not a Mark I because the bolt does not stay back after the last round is fired. Mark IIs and Mark IIIs do stay back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
This situation may be one where the top of the bolt catch is actually bent slightly outward more than it should be, which may also correspond with the chip you've described, and therefor due to the misaligned part the receiver is actually impeding the stop lever from elevating by pressure from the magazine follower button. Is there any rub mark on the inside of the receiver where it would meet with the bolt stop? If so... then there is likely your answer to the mystery. The top of a normal bolt stop lever should appear slightly bent outward.

Hope this helps.

R,
Bullseye
I'll take a look this weekend when I take it apart. Looking into the ejection port with a light I don't see any obvious rub mark. It doesn't look bent but not having another to compare it to who knows. I think I may just replace the bolt stop with a new one anyway since the current one has some damage to it.

Thanks for the advice Bullseye.
 

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Does it have a polymer frame, or steel? Its possible its a 22/45, or has a 22/45 polymer frame, with a Mark III upper. The polymer frame guns don't have a downward spring assist for the bolt stop lever, requiring you to draw back the bolt, and manually push the bolt lock lever down. Just a thought...
 

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I'm confused! I thought the bolt stop was part of the mainspring housing. Sounds like we're discussing the SLIDE LOCK which is controlled by the magazine and the lever on the right side. I'd look at the magazine and the slide lock assembly.
 

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rt11002003, There's no slide on a MK III pistol .... but there is a bolt, thus Ruger's official name "bolt stop".

28gaugefan, More times than not, it's something as simple as excess oil that has turned gummy with age. Before you bend or reshape any parts, try flushing the bolt stop and frame with powder solvent. It will dissolve the gummy oil and ally the parts to move freely again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hi everyone. Just wanted to thank everyone for their advice. I detailed stripped the pistol after my last post and gave everything a good blast with solvent. It still wouldn't lock open on an empty magazine either with live fire or hand cycling at home. It also would not slingshot the bolt with a full magazine. I ordered a new bolt stop assembly and put it in tonight. All is well now. It locks open on an empty mag when hand cycling sitting here at home and will slingshot with a full mag. Have to get out and do some live fire this weekend. I'm sure it'll work fine now.

Comparing the old and new stop. The only real difference I see is the small chip/burr on the rear top corner of the old one. Nothing looks bent compared to the new one. I guess that one little flaw was enough to screw up the works.

Thanks again to everyone who gave a piece of advice. It was kind of neat as I've never stripped any of my guns down to a pile of parts before. Not nearly as scary as I always thought it would be.
 

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Most of the time when a part fails it is not a catastrophic failure, just a chip breaks off the part. I have had several broken firing pins that I did not notice but a gunsmith that looks at broken firing pins all the time spotted the broken firing pin immediately. One older gunsmith who couldn't see so well showed me a trick that has saved me a lot of stress. He used a magnifying glass to spot the rough metal where the firing pin had broken. I have a magnifying glass in my tool box right now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Most of the time when a part fails it is not a catastrophic failure, just a chip breaks off the part. I have had several broken firing pins that I did not notice but a gunsmith that looks at broken firing pins all the time spotted the broken firing pin immediately. One older gunsmith who couldn't see so well showed me a trick that has saved me a lot of stress. He used a magnifying glass to spot the rough metal where the firing pin had broken. I have a magnifying glass in my tool box right now.
I was amazed that one little chip could cause all that grief. I was even more amazed I got the pistol apart and back together so easily. A good learning experience.

And ditto on having a magnifier of some kind. That and lots of light.
 

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lowegan, I should read the IPB. Sometimes, my language isn't precise, which can be a problem because I'm forever asking my wife to be precise. So, I won't mention this episode. Does this mean the Mark iii has two bolt stops and no bolt lock?
 

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rt11002003, Yes, the IPB in the owner's manual has Ruger's official name for each part. The above referenced part is #31 in the Mk III manual and it's official name is Bolt Stop Assembly. It is the device linked to the thumb lever used to manually or automatically lock the bolt in the rearward position. It can get confusing because other company's nomenclature is not the same. Further, even Ruger will list several parts with "bolt stop" in the name ... plunger, spring, etc.
 

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Thanks, eye-Oh-wee-jan. I'm getting sloppy in my old age, almost 78. Refer to all those rearward moving parts as a "slide", except the bolt group assembly in my LWRC ICR M6 SPR
 

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Hi everyone. Just wanted to thank everyone for their advice. I detailed stripped the pistol after my last post and gave everything a good blast with solvent. It still wouldn't lock open on an empty magazine either with live fire or hand cycling at home. It also would not slingshot the bolt with a full magazine. I ordered a new bolt stop assembly and put it in tonight. All is well now. It locks open on an empty mag when hand cycling sitting here at home and will slingshot with a full mag. Have to get out and do some live fire this weekend. I'm sure it'll work fine now.

Comparing the old and new stop. The only real difference I see is the small chip/burr on the rear top corner of the old one. Nothing looks bent compared to the new one. I guess that one little flaw was enough to screw up the works.

Thanks again to everyone who gave a piece of advice. It was kind of neat as I've never stripped any of my guns down to a pile of parts before. Not nearly as scary as I always thought it would be.
I know this was an old post, but I have a Ruger Mark lll Hunter and have the exact same problem.

This all started with a cycling problem which caused me to send it back to Ruger who replaced several parts including the bolt stop. Upon getting it back, it appears they improved the problem I was having, but the main cause is cheap ammo with insufficient velocity.

Anyway, after a few magazines were run through it, the bolt no longer locked back after the last round. Remember, it was a brand new bolt stop installed by Ruger.

After disassembly, I noticed the same burr you mentioned. I called Ruger and the very knowledgeable guy I spoke to agreed that was the cause. He shocked me when he informed me that the bolt stop lever on the outside wasn’t intended to be used as a bolt release, and that’s what likely caused the damage to the bolt stop.

He said that’s true with all semi autos. It should be used to manually lock the slide back, but you should ‘slingshot’ the bolt or slide, to use your term, to seat the first round. That’s gonna be a hard habit to break.
 
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