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Old 08-15-2020, 11:29 PM   #21
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

Well just back after another function test, rode the Ski Doo a mile out of town.
I shook out two rows from the Box of cartridges.
On chambering the first round I had trouble, the round would not fully rise up to seat on the bolt face.
Something was preventing the rounds from fully seating, I would free drop a round into the chamber and nudged the bolt closed.
Every round I chambered that way fired without a hitch, very round fed through the lifter to the bolt jammed.
I messed with the firing pin but stupidly never checked using my flashy new blue proving rounds.
But not this boy! No I had to hammer it straight and tweaked it out a bit longer, but I never checked if the firing pin fully retracted flush with the bolt face, the firing pin didnt, and as the bolt traveled forward to strip the round and chamber it was hanging up under the little bit of firing pin causing jams, luckly I didnt have Out of Battery Discharge or have it slam fire like a Sten machinegun open bolt with a fixed firing pin.
Well I fixed the problem.
The action proving dummy rounds cycle through now without a hitch.
Now all I have to do is try it with some live rounds.
Top photo shows how they kinked as they jammed on feeding.
The bottom photo shows the rounds that were drop fed and fired.

Last edited by Rex in OTZ; 08-16-2020 at 08:34 AM.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:32 PM   #22
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

I figure to eventually get this 552 to work, It will take awhile, the Kazan method of fixing seems to be the way.
I trundled it along on my after supper walk.
Loaded it up and tried it out.
The first shot fired, the second clicked on a live round, on re-cocking the extractor didnt pull it from the chamber, it tried to double feed, so shook out the extra round and let the bolt close on the round that didnt fire, it fired and cycled a fresh round and it failed to fire as well and it double fed on cycling to reset the hammer.
That went on for the the whole magazine only a small percentage fired on the first try.
I was able to extract three rounds that failed to fire when struck once.
I pocketed them for later study
Same with another magazine full.
All in all it fired about a dozzen rounds.
I pocketed the empties.
I did get it to fire three consecutive times.
Back at the house the I had the empties out to study and the three that didnt fire but had very shallow fireing pin strikes.
The fired cases had decent firing pin strikes.
I pulled down the gun for study.
Im definately replacing the hammer strut spring,
And while at it will also replace the firing pin.
I tried fitting a live round on the bolt face while I had the bolt out of the gun.
A live round just barely fit under the extractor claw,
From the looks of it, the extractor seems to be in good shape as far as it fits the particular rounds I have on hand though the rounds seem rather fat.

Last edited by Rex in OTZ; 08-15-2020 at 11:52 PM.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:33 PM   #23
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36
About 10am today
I hauled her out last weekend.
It fired initally and then just started to lightly tap the firing pin just enough to Not set off the cartridge primer compound.
Just as annoying was its inability to extract the duds which resulted in double feed jam after jam.
It was so frustrating, it was approx 28F
The wind was picking up and Id walked about 1.3 mile on a icy road to get to a decent place to fire my weapon.
Now I had this stuck dud that wouldnt extract from the chamber (claw kept slipping off)
Using my pocket knife flat screwdriver & awl blades I was able to remove the barrel and drift out the trigger group
On removing the barrel and inverting it after removing the bolt.
The dud round that repeatedly would not extract fell from the chamber by gravity.

This morning I removed that troublesome trigger group after gathering tools needed to drift out the riveted Hammer/Disconnector pin.
After drifing it out I removed the hammer and was able to remove the hammer spring and plunger.
On removal it was noticed the plunger was sticky from varnish like old lube (at room temprature!!) If the hammer spring and plunger were this sticky at room temp's, what excessive resistance to a hammer fall would it have at tempratures below 25F?
Now was the time to replace the hammer spring I'd just bought from Numrich (used) now when replacing springs I love comparing Old and New spring lengths.
The Numrich used spring was shorter than the one removed from the 1972 era 552.
So figuring a shorter compression spring would most likely have a weaker hammer blow.
So after using solvent to remove the sticky gum and grime I reinstalled the original and staked the hammer
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:35 PM   #24
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

Tonight after supper, I took the 552 Jam-O-Matic for another test run.
I loaded up 15 rounds and tried to make it go.
Of the 15 rounds in the magazine 5 rounds failed to fire.
Yet after ironing the chamber the FTF rounds extracted and ejected.
The next 15 rounds three rounds failed to fire.
The last 15 rounds only 4 rounds failed to fire.
I was unable to locate 9 spent casings.
I could try a different brand or see about what I could do about the firing pin strikes being kinda light.
The firing pin strikes still seem inconsistant.
But the positive thing about tonights test, NO Jams!!!
I think I broke it of that nasty tendency to jam.
Now its just the issue of failing to fire.

Last edited by Rex in OTZ; 08-15-2020 at 11:51 PM.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:38 PM   #25
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

Some insight of one possible problem came to light on another gunsmithing forum.

For all I went through, I thought to pass along my findings. There were many things I went through and wierd encounters. I never thought about the primer mixture fracturing. And who would have thought the Fireing pin would have been bent. There were two or three times I felt like pitching that .22 into the willows or snow drift. But I love puzzles. I just Had to know why it was doing what It was. Varnish like lube. Tired springs. Bent firing pin Broken disconnector. Worn extractor claw. Boggered chamber sticking cases. Buffer peened badly. And Flakey ammo.

Quote: BobM1919
1 day ago post #9

'An interesting narrative on the trials and tribulations of bringing an old rifle back to life. Compounded by the low temps you must deal with.
It's those very same tempetures that might be causing the failure to fire. Pull one of the misfired rounds apart, dump the powder on a clean sheet of paper. Inspect the powder, looking for green or yellow specks or chunks mixed in. This is the priming compound, it shatters rather than lights under the blow of the FP. Inspect the case, sometimes all of the priming is gone, sometimes there is a bit left. I've seen this with almost all brands of ammo, if it is cold enough, but it seems to happen with Federal brand the most often'.

Thats some food for thought.

I had a couple boxes knocking around for ages in my snowmobile handlebar bag!

Now with thoughts of rough handling of a cartridge before it ever leaves the box is something I wont take for granted now.
Thinking of my own rough treatment that may have caused FTF.

I do remember a particular brand Remington both the green n yellah and the Thunder-Duds that averaged 4 to 9 duds per box.
I took it for granted that it was Remingtons making crappy cartridges and pitched the duds some after 2-4 firing pin marks.
It could easily have been in the shipping and handling after they left the factory, careless handling on the loading docks, transferring it at the distribution center, airtransport to bush Alaska, he tempratures at the time of transport.
What stands out in the particular case happened during the first term of Obama in Office, the Rural supply of rimfire cartridges was slowly drying up, till the last bunch to hit the OTZ Alaska Commercial Company shelves was just Remingtons averaging $6 a box of fifty.
So what I rwmember was lots of Dud's shortly before tbe shelves went dry for the next 5 years.
I dont blame Obama for the cartridges being dud's, but the lack of options in ammunition I had available was.


Tonight I had the inner magazine out and noticed it was kinda gritty like when pushing the follower in, in fact all along when loading cartridges the inner magazine was always a hassle after loading to get it back in the outer housing.
I have other tube mag rimfires that way easier than this 552.
Earlier Id replaced the tube magazine spring, and I had ran a cleaning rod with a patch attachment.
Since then Id replaced the cotton patch and picked open some 3-M scotch brite to clear the insides of the inner magazine.
It certainly wouldnt hurt to polish out 48 years of grunge that accumulated in there.
After pulling it down the inner magazine and swabbing with generous dose of HOPPES #9 did nothing to improve magazine follower, spinning a brass brush inside the magazine to slick it up its operation.
So will have to check it out tomorrow after work.
Suspect rust spots are causing dragging of follower.

Just remember those fancy blue aluminum dummy rounds will be ruined if you attempt to use them as snap caps.

Last edited by Rex in OTZ; 08-15-2020 at 11:43 PM.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:41 PM   #26
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36
Apr 12, 2019

The gift went out for another try after replacing the extractor and firing pin, the Numrich hammer spring was used and a bit shorter than the one Id removed.
So cleaned it real good and reinstalled it and re-riveted the hammer pin a second time (first time was to R2 the disconnector)
Last nights test, being a tight wad I loaded the first 15 rounds with some from the last outing.
Only 3 rounds in 15 discharged.
I opened a new box and loaded 15.
Six rounds in fifteen discharged.
Id brouht along a Chiappa M1-22
To test as well.
I loaded it with ten rounds from the same box.
The Chiappa chewed through the ten rounds without a hitch.
I kept the spent brass from both .22's (Chiappa m1-22 and Rem 552)
I pulled the bullets from a couple duds and found flakes of yellow priming compound mixed with the powder.

For the Gift (552) to fire 6 out of 15 with this ammount of case dent.
Was the firing pin still not hitting hard enough?
Or not wide enough, the Chiappa has a wider dent in the rim than the Gift is making.
So I pulled the 552 barrel and bolt, removed the new firing pin and ran the top bottom and sides on my knife hone block, smoothing any places that drag could deflect the hammer blow to less than it could.
Reinstalled new firing pin after stoneing off any drag risers.
Just a few minutes ago I placed a order for a brand new remington 552 hammer spring from Brownells (no more used springs from Numrich)
Will report more after parts arrive.

I think due to the nature of the firing mechanism of this particular 552,
it produces more Duds than any rimfire Ive encountered, duds can exist before loading, I think this particular rifle can damage the priming compound of the average .22 LR irreguardless of the batch, brand and era producing duds where none existed before.

Last edited by Rex in OTZ; 08-15-2020 at 11:51 PM.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:45 PM   #27
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

Well the new hammer spring arrived Saturday,
I installed it last night.
Hadnt tried it yet.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:47 PM   #28
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

This afternoon we went out, and tried the 552 (replacef the hammer spring), I stoked it with 10 rnds Federal silver box, cycled in the first round, which fired, the second didnt and neiter did the 7th & 9th rounds tried.
So 7 out of ten fired!
Then tried another six and only one fired, then I tried some really old CCI minimags and every one of them duded out on me.

After getting back to town, I removed the barrel/bolt unit.
While out, I noticed some battering on the side front left side of the hammer, its fresh from hitting something and killing off the hammer blow force.

Took a photo of the bolt and barrel pointed up so the firing pin was hanging down out of the bolt, then tipped it down so the firing pin gravity dropped into the fired position.
Then the odd dent on the forward Left corner of the hammer, had me wondering WTH.
Last couple photo of me trying to get a hammer side play deflection.

Last edited by Rex in OTZ; 08-15-2020 at 11:50 PM.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:50 PM   #29
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

As I was sitting there studying just what the heck was scuffing the hammer, I had it reassembled and was slowly working the bolt.
I noticed there is a pretty fair ammount of CCW torsional twist to the bolt as it closed the last half inch.
Trying to figure just how much movement is happening I added some post-it sticky pad over part the ejection port.

If the tolerances of the ejector and grooves on the side of the bolt that also act as a bolt guide are excessive this could allow the bolt to twist as it cycles, possibly twisting in such a way that causes the hammer to strike a glancing blow when fired instead of squarely striking the firing pin causing light hits?
I might try a new bolt guide/ejector before trying to locate a new bolt
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:57 PM   #30
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

Last Sunday I studied the trigger group, as noted, there was scarring on the front edge of the hammer.
And I was looking at the bolt and its axial freeplay and the engagement in the Bolt guide/ejector.
Thinking this is one area I had yet to address.
So I removed the bolt guide/
extractor and placed it on a anvil and adjusted it some using a hammer to square the engaugement slot better.
Then using a couple prybars spread open the bolt guide so it would better support the Bolt to remove some the excessive axial rotation of the bolt.
The reassembled the 552 for another function test.

*Last night the oldest daughter said she 'NEED'ed' some firearms therapy so we loaded up the snowmobiles and a couple .22's and some other "firearms with a high fun factor" and snowmobiled out to an secluded spot, to relax and have fun and for me the chance to test the 552 after tweaking the bolt guide/ejector.
It was about 8pm Alaska Time
Air temprature 40F
Using fresh CCI ammunition.
I loaded 5 rounds in the magazine and tried a couple shots.
What was surprising was It fired like it should!
The 552 shot all 5 rounds without a single FTF!
I did pick up some the spent brass for later study
I loaded another 15 rounds and tried it again and it shot all of them without a hitch.
Then I loaded another 15 rounds and let my son shoot.
Then another 15 for my daughter.
Thats when she encountered two FTF out of 15.
Then my son tried another 15 rounds and more FTF's started to crop up.
Then It just went to a steady stream of FTF's.
Well that gave me something to think about.
The other .22 rifle we brought along used the same box of ammunition and worked till it developed a safety issue and was cleard and put up for later inspection.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:59 PM   #31
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

Well I brought out "Dudley the Dud maker" a couple days back.
I was mostly firing some fresh ammo and dinging the others into duds with light firing pin strikes.
I had spent casings with healthy firing pin indentations, some spent casings with a dents that must have been 'just a nuff' to set it off, and some the firing pin dents fail to fire rounds with really light firing pin marks (some so light you really had to look for them).

Here is a 48 year old Alaskan camp Remington 552.
So far I found a broken disconnector and replaced it, then suspected burrs and galling on bolt and ejector so sanded, filed and stoned it, then replaced the bolt return spring with a new one that was 1.5" shorter than the old sping, then replaced the magazine spring, the new spring was over 14" longer than the old spring, then the 1971 era extractor claw, then the original firing pin?, then the 48 yro hammer spring, tweaked the ejector guide inlets on the bolt.
Dressd boogers on the bolt, on the hammer, even stoned off the spalled over steel buffer insert, just stoned it so it was even when the bolt recoiled into it.

Well Im sitting out in a willow patch, in a out the way corner of the tundra just outta town and Foggy as He**, and I decide to pull it appart on the spot on top of a open gun case and using my belt multi tool drifted the trigger group retaining pins, then a 1cent piece to pull loose the front hand guard and slide out the barrel & bolt.
Im sitting out there on a grassy patch on a small bowl looking at this hammer and bolt and am thinking.
The 552 hammer does deform from hitting stuff so its soft. The scars and burrs prove that.
I tried to imagine just how the hammer sits as it strikes the firing pin in the bolt.
The 552 hammer has a slight raised portion about the last quarter inch of the tip of the face side of hammer.

Is it possible that the hammer over time and repeated firing cycles battering away that little raised portion of the bolt face on the back end of the bolt can deform?
If that soft metal face were to be battered out of tolerance that could possibly cause light strikes on the firing pin, no matter how many firing pins you replace, itd be something to bear in mind?
And the 1/8" side to side play of hammer, if as its dropping with that excessive side play could bleed off the force of the hammer blow as it drop's and this accounts for the intermittant light and normal strikes of the fireing pin?
One question I have, Would my hammer rivet take another remove and restake cycle?
I dropped the trigger group in my brand new ultra sconic cleaner I bought off Amazon, and gave it a good warm solvent bath cleaning for a couple hours.
Then as I was fiddling with the trigger group thinking of how I was going to shim out the hammer wobble, I noticed something that escaped my attention before.
Something very obvious.
Something a trained gunsmith would have caught.
A cracked cartridge lifter?
Just what would cause a cartridge lifter crack like that???
Has anyone ever seen that happen on a 552?
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Old 08-16-2020, 12:03 AM   #32
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

Well My first hammer shim was some plastic from a pop bottle, that was too tight a fit and bound up the hammer, then tried aluminum cut from the side of a aluminum pop can, three pop can shims removed close 85 -90% the side to side slop in the hammer.
To accentuate that raised face of the hammers firing pin striking surface, I ran a file over the relief portion of the hammer to allow the hammer that extra bit that was peened off since 1971.
So its all reassembled, lightly oiled and ready for my next try at that intermittant light / normal firing pin strikes.
And since I have a even worse shape 552 in pieces laying in storage, I went out and scavanged a serviceable cartridge lifter and installed on "Pinger" the 1971 "Dud Maker"
It pings the case enough to knock loose the priming compound in the case rim, creating a dud space on that cartridges rim, stick it in another rimfire with the dead space down, the pinged cartridge will still fire.
If I try to refire it in Pinger, its chances of firing ever again its really low.
Its saddining the ammount of ammunition that was junked because of this rimfire.

All this time I sat in a willow patch well away from any wandering hiker with drifts of snow in patches, Id taken off my jacket to use as a blanket to dessemble the rifle over so as not to lose parts in the field.

Last edited by Rex in OTZ; 08-16-2020 at 12:07 AM.
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Old 08-16-2020, 12:08 AM   #33
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

Well I took it out a couple weeks back, there was no improvement in its performance.
Out of 15 rounds loaded only 4 rounds discharged.
Im thinking its head space.
The discharged case's had a slight ballooning of the case base.
It should be flat Im pretty sure.
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Old 08-16-2020, 12:10 AM   #34
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

Well I have done all I can do to the bolt and the trigger group.
My best guess was the original firing pin was bent wierd was what chopped up the chamber seat.
I did manage to use a long thin taper punch to work down the offending burr that was catching the fired cases.
So I'm thinking the best way to close up some the head space is to stone off a thousandth or so of the back end of the barrel extension.
My last trip out pretty much confirmed bringing the bolt forward a couple thousandths should still be fine as far as firing pin protrusion (0.045") and head space demensions and should have plenty of clearance from firing pin's protrusion as its barely denting the cartridge as it is, might just be enough to gain that extra thousandth or so it needs to positively pinch the priming compound and set off the chambered cartridge.
Thats my main beef with this rifle now.

Its possible my old photos are still up on this sight.
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Old 08-16-2020, 12:12 AM   #35
Join Date: Aug 2020
Posts: 36

Well I kinda drifted off on a tangent and ended up lengthing the firing pin to strike the cartridge case deeper.
This did not work as well as Id hoped, the firing pin protrusion was now excessive.
I had to stop and think on this.
I bought another new factory firing pin.
Comparing my bolt assy with another 552 assy.
Both demensions were so close to be interchangeable.
And did swap them resulting in the same shallow strikes.
So we have a chamber that was ironed by myself one time.
How many attempts at ironing this chamber had this 1971 era rifle encountered before? Once? Twice? Four times?
So in order to shrink the distance from the erroded chamber to the bolt face I elected to remove a small ammount of metal from the butt end of the barrel extension that contacts the bolt assy.
Just buffing the butt end the barrel extension end that "small bit" was the tipping point of "just enuf" firing pin strike to reliably ignite every cartridge chambered.

View attachment 131510
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Old 08-16-2020, 08:47 PM   #36
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: San Antonio, TX
Posts: 551

The "problems" that our member in The UK has had are evidently TYPICAL & that
is WHY I bought/hunt with a Remington Model 572 PUMP-gun.

My OLD 573 has "never missed a lick" in > 2 decades & over a THOUSAND plus rounds fired. .

yours, sw
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