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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Recently took my 45 Redhawk down, did a light polish on trigger surfaces, and installed a 14 pound mainspring. Afterward, it wouldn’t ignite Winchester primers, but did ignite Federal primers every time. So, I re-installed the factory spring, and it still won’t fire Winchester primers.

This is my first Redhawk, and I’ve never worked with the single spring action before. Is it possible I got something out of whack on assembly? I’d really appreciate some help.
 

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Recently took my 45 Redhawk down, did a light polish on trigger surfaces, and installed a 14 pound mainspring. Afterward, it wouldn’t ignite Winchester primers, but did ignite Federal primers every time. So, I re-installed the factory spring, and it still won’t fire Winchester primers.

This is my first Redhawk, and I’ve never worked with the single spring action before. Is it possible I got something out of whack on assembly? I’d really appreciate some help.
I've heard Winchester primers are often harder. I've never had trouble with their 9mm or 223, but Herter's 22 is no fun.

Have you ever had luck with the same Winchester cartridges on that specific revolver? Or did you modify it prior to ever shooting the Winchesters? What specific cartridge is it (e.g., grain, White Box, etc.)?

Did you inspect the primers and try striking them again? Could be a bad box, you never know.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I've heard Winchester primers are often harder. I've never had trouble with their 9mm or 223, but Herter's 22 is no fun.

Have you ever had luck with the same Winchester cartridges on that specific revolver? Or did you modify it prior to ever shooting the Winchesters? What specific cartridge is it (e.g., grain, White Box, etc.)?

Did you inspect the primers and try striking them again? Could be a bad box, you never know.
I tried them again with no luck, single and double action. My Blackhawk fires them every time. My Redhawk worked fine with the Winchester primers before I changed the spring, but wouldn’t after. I changed the spring back to factory with the same results. Federal primed ammo is factory ammo, and Winchester primed are hand loads, which work fine in my Blackhawk.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
On the handloads failing to fire. It is possible that you failed to fully seat the primer into the cup. This will cause misfires about every time.
They’re fully seated, and my Blackhawk is 100% firing them. I’ll disassemble the Redhawk tomorrow, and make sure I didn’t miss anything.
 

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In that case I would pull out the springs and carefully looks for tiny burrs or chips that may be preventing it to ignite primers. Take a dry q-tip and clean out the recesses.
 

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I remember reading an article on Buffalo Bores website talking about reliability issues with the Redhawk revolver. It had to do with clearances between the hammer and the transfer bar. Basically the step on the face of the hammer was hitting the frame before the hammer had made sufficient contact with the transfer bar resulting in light strikes. The fix was to remove material from the step on the face of the hammer till reliable ignition resulted. The key is to be careful because removing to much material and the transfer bar safety no longer functions.
 

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I remember reading an article on Buffalo Bores website talking about reliability issues with the Redhawk revolver. It had to do with clearances between the hammer and the transfer bar. Basically the step on the face of the hammer was hitting the frame before the hammer had made sufficient contact with the transfer bar resulting in light strikes. The fix was to remove material from the step on the face of the hammer till reliable ignition resulted. The key is to be careful because removing to much material and the transfer bar safety no longer functions.
This is a potential issue with I dare say any Ruger with a transfer bar. I have had to take the step down on a couple Ruger revolvers, notably single six revolvers. I don’t consider it worth sending it back to Ruger, it’s an easy fix to take the step down just a tad and suddenly ignition is 100%.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
This is a potential issue with I dare say any Ruger with a transfer bar. I have had to take the step down on a couple Ruger revolvers, notably single six revolvers. I don’t consider it worth sending it back to Ruger, it’s an easy fix to take the step down just a tad and suddenly ignition is 100%.
I’m thinking the step is the recess under the part of the hammer that hits the firing pin. What did you use to remove metal from the step? And thanks for the info.

I scored a great deal on some Winchester primers, and don’t have any Federal, only part of a box of loaded Federal ammo. That’s the reason I’m trying to make the Winchester primers work. Was extremely lucky to find ANY primers right now.
 

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I’m thinking the step is the recess under the part of the hammer that hits the firing pin. What did you use to remove metal from the step? And thanks for the info.

I scored a great deal on some Winchester primers, and don’t have any Federal, only part of a box of loaded Federal ammo. That’s the reason I’m trying to make the Winchester primers work. Was extremely lucky to find ANY primers right now.
No, the step is the top part of the actual hammer. When the hammer is down resting on the frame, the transfer bar is lowered so that nothing is on the primer. By removing just a little material, it will allow the lower step of the hammer, the part that engages the transfer bar, to move the transfer bar a little more. Easy to see, hard to explain. The top step, the part you see hitting the frame when the hammer is down and nothing is touching the trigger, is what controls how far the hammer falls and how far the hammer can engage the transfer bar. Maybe I can get some pics when I get home from work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
No, the step is the top part of the actual hammer. When the hammer is down resting on the frame, the transfer bar is lowered so that nothing is on the primer. By removing just a little material, it will allow the lower step of the hammer, the part that engages the transfer bar, to move the transfer bar a little more. Easy to see, hard to explain. The top step, the part you see hitting the frame when the hammer is down and nothing is touching the trigger, is what controls how far the hammer falls and how far the hammer can engage the transfer bar. Maybe I can get some pics when I get home from work.
I’d appreciate some pics, as I’m kinda confused.
 

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Here is a string with what Iowegan stated to do to the hammer top step:


Here is something else I came across on Redhawk tuning:


Still, if the Redhawk would fire the WW before with the stock 17lb mainspring it should now unless, as noted, something got lodged in the works or reassembly is not correct. My own experience with the Redhawk was I needed the 14 lb mainspring to reliably ignite WW after having the gun tuned and putting in a Bowen extended firing pin with primer protrusion set at 0.055". This can vary somewhat based upon endshake and headspace of the individual gun.

Here is more form Iowegan:

 

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I bought a Lighter mainspring from Wolff for my 45 Colt/45acp Hawk. The same thing as you described occurred with mine. It mainly happened firing D/A. Put in the factory spring and the Revolver behaved normally. I use Federal Primers exclusively in all of my revolver Loads.
Revolver Air gun Trigger Wood Gun barrel
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Here is a string with what Iowegan stated to do to the hammer top step:


Here is something else I came across on Redhawk tuning:


Still, if the Redhawk would fire the WW before with the stock 17lb mainspring it should now unless, as noted, something got lodged in the works or reassembly is not correct. My own experience with the Redhawk was I needed the 14 lb mainspring to reliably ignite WW after having the gun tuned and putting in a Bowen extended firing pin with primer protrusion set at 0.055". This can vary somewhat based upon endshake and headspace of the individual gun.

Here is more form Iowegan:

Don’t think I ever fired the Winchester primers double action in the Redhawk before I noticed the problem. Took it apart today, and made sure everything was assembled correctly. Tried it with the Winchester primers double action, and none fired. Single action 5 of 6 fired. Federal ammo ammo worked fine, but I’m about to run out. I’m gonna try primers from another box to make sure I haven’t got a bad batch of primers. Seems odd that my Blackhawk will fire them 100%.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I bought a Lighter mainspring from Wolff for my 45 Colt/45acp Hawk. The same thing as you described occurred with mine. It mainly happened firing D/A. Put in the factory spring and the Revolver behaved normally. I use Federal Primers exclusively in all of my revolver Loads.
View attachment 153631
Wish I had some Federal primers, as I like them. Got a chance to buy 12k Winchester primers at $20 per 1000, and definitely took the deal. I’ve helped some friends, and kept some for myself.
 

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Here is the picture I posted of the step I was talking about. Iowegan’s write-up is good that is referenced in #13. FYI, don’t get too wild and crazy, it just takes a little bit. Let me know if there is any other pics you needed.

153632
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Here is the picture I posted of the step I was talking about. Iowegan’s write-up is good that is referenced in #13. FYI, don’t get too wild and crazy, it just takes a little bit. Let me know if there is any other pics you needed.
I figured this out once I took a good look. What did you use to remove metal? I appreciate your help, and I believe this is my problem.
View attachment 153632
 

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Iowegean's recommendation is to remove no more than .020" from the top step. The transfer bar hits the firing pin with inertia, not positive imact with the hammer, removing .020" gives more thrust to the transfer bar. Unless you grind the top step down to almost nothing you won't make the gun unsafe, but the hammer resting on the transfer bar can hang up the transfer bar so that it doesn't fall as the trigger is released, which will not let your trigger reset. Then you have to remove metal from under the top step and polish the bejeesus out of the that area. Yes I did that, no it wasn't a Ruger, the gun works just fine now but it was a lot more work. There is also a company that makes extended firing pins for Redhawks
(https://parts.bowenclassicarms.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=49) . I don't have a Redhawk so I can't review the results.
 

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303 - did i miss it, or did you replace the new spring with the original, stock spring and check for misfires?
 
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