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Discussion Starter #1
I have a strange problem that only happens when live firing. When firing my 1959 cobra double action the cylinder will lock up almost every other shot. When I pull the trigger to fire a second shot the bolt drops and the cylinder rotates about 1/3 to 1/2 of its travel and then stops. The bolt is retracted and almost ready to pop back up but the cylinder is locked unless I help it rotate by hand. This problem cannot be replicated when dry firing with snap caps. Any help is appreciated. It almost feels like the cases are catching up on the recoil shield or something but after I've got it working again I can go back to that fired chamber and continue shooting double action from there.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
When single action dry cycling the gun the timing appears near perfect. The bolt starts to drop as soon as the hammer starts to move and pops back up in the lead near the locking notch. pulling the trigger pushes the hand against the ratchet producing the bank vault lock up. I really can't figure out what is going on except that maybe the cases after firing are getting caught up on the recoil shield causing the gun to lock up and requiring me to jiggle the cylinder or help it rotate by hand.
 

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What ammo are you using? The reason I ask is that some ammo or cases are flat with a hard edge, PMC comes to mind. I seem to remember issues like yours and that edge was hitting the latch.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
What ammo are you using? The reason I ask is that some ammo or cases are flat with a hard edge, PMC comes to mind. I seem to remember issues like yours and that edge was hitting the latch.
Unfortunately it has the same issue with Remington, Federal, and Winchester.
 

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I have a Cobra here with snap caps, well dummy rounds in it.
Is the side plate loose?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I have a Cobra here with snap caps, well dummy rounds in it.
Is the side plate loose?
No, I thought maybe something was wrong inside so I took off the side plate and best I could tell it was working just like any of my other old colts. I tightened the side plate when I put it back on but the problem continues.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The recoil shield around the firing pin bushing looks to be dented almost like it is uneven and not flat sort of like a step down on the face of the "breech face"? Could the cases be sticking to this area upon firing and they stick until I rotate the cylinder with my hand? Because after firing and helping rotate the cylinder I can cycle the gun and let the hammer down all I want with live ammo fired ammo and snap caps. It is only on the first rotation after a cartridge has fired that I have a problem. After that initial firing I can keep cycling the gun and rotate the empty cases as much as I want with no problems it's only after firing that it sticks.
 

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My thought is after firing, the fired case is sticking inside the area around the firing pin hole.
The breech face there should be flat or flush.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
My thought is after firing, the fired case is sticking inside the area around the firing pin hole.
The breech face there should be flat or flush.
This is what I am thinking as well. Do you think the recoil plate has been replaced at some point? (Numrich gun parts calls the piece with the firing pin hole in it the "recoil plate")
 

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Discussion Starter #14
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Beyond the clearly visible machined in ridge there is another ridge. The whole area where the rim of the case sits is depressed and more sunken in than the rest of the recoil shield all the way around. I tried to show this in these pictures with the arrows. if this is what the cases are catching on does anyone know what if anything could be done to repair this? Also thank you to all who have commented with helpful tips. This really is an incredible community full of very helpful people!
 

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A bushing like that is not good.
It's possible it has been replaced incorrectly or ???

My advice is to send it to one of the two forum recommended Colt qualified pistolsmiths....DO NOT take it to any local gunsmith, this is a critical area that few locals really understand or can correct, since it requires special tools to safely work on the recoil plate, even IF this one can be repaired.

We have two professional Colt qualified Master pistolsmiths who might be able to repair the frame and plate.

Frank Glenn is a well known Master pistolsmith who offers factory level repairs with excellent turn around, pricing, and top of the line repairs to Colt's.

Frank Glenn-Glenn Custom Complete Gunsmithing Service Glendale AZ

Len Specklin was trained at the Colt factory by a legendary Colt gunsmith.

Spartan Firearm Company
 

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Discussion Starter #16
A bushing like that is not good.
It's possible it has been replaced incorrectly or ???

My advice is to send it to one of the two forum recommended Colt qualified pistolsmiths....DO NOT take it to any local gunsmith, this is a critical area that few locals really understand or can correct, since it requires special tools to safely work on the recoil plate, even IF this one can be repaired.

We have two professional Colt qualified Master pistolsmiths who might be able to repair the frame and plate.

Frank Glenn is a well known Master pistolsmith who offers factory level repairs with excellent turn around, pricing, and top of the line repairs to Colt's.

Frank Glenn-Glenn Custom Complete Gunsmithing Service Glendale AZ

Len Specklin was trained at the Colt factory by a legendary Colt gunsmith.

Spartan Firearm Company
Thank you very much! I will stop shooting it for now and at some point when the extra funds are available will send it off!
 

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I second the recommendation to send it to Frank Glen in Arizona, I called him in May, got shipping instructions for my 1944 Official Police, sent it to him via Fedex second day air, he had it less than a month and cleaned up all of its problems. The bill was less than what it would have cost me to replace it with a comparable vintage Colt.. Shipping from San Diego was about $80 each way.. After taking that out the price was even more reasonable to have a very serviceable pistol.

I'd call him and then send him the pictures you have on here and get his opinion....

Jim
 

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Those are good pictures and a good description of the problem. I had a very similar situation with a hybrid USFA/Colt SAA. While adjusting the bolt/trigger pull spring, I dry fired it without snap caps one too many times. As a result, one of the two staking points on the recoil shield/breech face broke apart, essentially moving the left hand side of the recoil shield forward. After firing several live rounds, the cylinder would not turn in either direction. With difficulty the cylinder was removed and the empty cases showed very pronounced primer setback which caught the edge of the breech face where the recoil shield had now been pushed backwards as a result of the pressure.
I knew I was in trouble and had a phone consultations with a prominant single action specialist. He advised me to buy a new gun .
Having nothing to lose, and with a new recoil shield in hand, I went from the hammer side and gently tapped the recoil shield back to exactly flush.
Noticing a very thin circular space around the part, I attempted to fill that space with anaerobic cyanoacrylate glue. I used light air pressure from a can to force the glue deeper. I let it dry and then did the same from the other side.....let that dry and repeated both ends.
My initial load was 6.0 Red Dot and Lazercast 250 RNFP. The repair held fine for thirty rounds and then moved slightly with a more powerful load and unsatisfactory load..
I use the same punch again, one end of a bamboo chop stick hit with a rawhide mallet to again align the shield. I added baking soda as a filler this time to take up any extra space....might have held better if I had used the fine powder initially....donno, might have inhibited the glue from going deep also.
The glue I used is called "The Last Glue You Will Ever Need". It will only cure in the absence of oxygen (anerobic),made in Germany and rather expensive. I had used it successfully to make invisible stock repairs.
No one cares more about your gun than you do. I carefully repaired my own for next to nothing and if had hadn't revealed it here, you would never know. The glue wil have sufficient stability and body to secure the recoil shield without the brittleness of the case hardened stake points. Your problem seems the same and this method might apply to yours. Don't mess with the lockwork before you attend to leveling the recoil shield to the breech frame. Good luck.
 
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