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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  Gunsmithing  |  Topic: Fixing a short arbor on an Uberti 1849 Pocket Pistol 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: Fixing a short arbor on an Uberti 1849 Pocket Pistol  (Read 6186 times)
ndnchf
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« on: July 03, 2015, 01:10:51 pm »


First off I want to say thanks to Pettifogger for his great articles on cap and ball pistols.  I read his articles and applied his method of fixing the short arbor problem.  There is nothing new here, other than I did it on my little Uberti 1849 pocket pistol and made my own button. 



After reading Pettifogger's article I pulled out my 1849 to check the arbor, sure enough it was short.  This is clearly visible here:



I didn't have any of those Dillon buttons he recommends, but I do have an old 12" Altas lathe, so I proceeded to make my own button.  I know that not everyone has a lathe, but this shows just another good reason to put one on your wish list.
But this little pistol is small, so I needed to scale things down a bit.  The arbor is .305" diameter. So I made the button the same size.  I decided to drill a 5/64" hole in the end of the arbor for the button's stem.  I made the stem about .002" undersize in the hole. 



The arbor is about .080" short, so to start out I made the button about .100" thick.  I wanted it to be oversize to start with, then I could work it down to fit.  Here is the oversize button ready to be fitted.



Following Pettifogger's guidance, I very carefully marked, drilled and chamfered the 5/64" hole in the end of the arbor.



Test fitting the button with feeler gauges showed that it was about .020" too long.



So back to the lathe with the button where I carefully thinned the head .005" at a time.  I did this several times until I had it where
the barrel matched the lower frame perfectly.



Here is the finished button, the end chamfered similar to the original arbor end. It was then set in the arbor with medium strength Loctite.



Next I put it back together and found the wedge was just a little too wide.  It would go in, but not enough to protrude out the right side.  So with a fine file, I carefully narrowed the wedge until it would just protrude out the right side a little bit. The cylinder gap is now even top to bottom and measures .008" using a feeler gauge with the barrel held back against the hand spring. 



I'm very pleased with the results.  I hope you all find this helpful.
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Blair
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« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2015, 01:55:04 pm »

ndnchf,

Very well done and with great photos!
My best,
 Blair
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« Reply #2 on: July 03, 2015, 02:23:22 pm »

You're hired!!!  Grin  Good job!!  Wink
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Fingers McGee
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« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2015, 02:35:04 pm »

Great job.   Cheesy
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« Reply #4 on: July 03, 2015, 03:53:22 pm »

I heartily agree!  Great photos!  Kudos to you sir.   Grin
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ndnchf
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« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2015, 04:15:21 pm »

Thanks Pards, glad ya'll like it. I have to wonder why Uberti is so sloppy about this critical dimension. They do such a good job on the rest of the gun. Oh well, it's no longer an issue now.
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Coffinmaker
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« Reply #6 on: July 03, 2015, 08:52:48 pm »

Great job.  Just one little mistake  Shocked  The Arbor was NOT too short.  Roll Eyes  The hole in the barrel lug was drilled too deep Shocked  Just depends on which end of the gun you look at it from  Grin

Excellent job.  Now that you have the barrel/arbor fit fixed, you'll have a really fun little pistol to play with  Cheesy Cheesy  Real nice work.

Coffinmaker
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45 Dragoon
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« Reply #7 on: July 03, 2015, 11:48:41 pm »

Great job!!

Those articles have helped a lot of folks (including me ) understand what the end product should be.
I have to agree with CM about the hole being too deep!! I fill in the hole with steel shims and dress the arbor for final fit (ending with .002-.0025 bbl/cyl clearance) and use the end of the arbor to house an adjustable front bearing (instead of the button approach). This allows the original wedge to be used indefinitely. The tight bbl/cyl clearance is key for keeping fowling from binding the cyl.on the arbor.

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com
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ndnchf
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« Reply #8 on: July 04, 2015, 05:41:16 am »

I hadn't really thought about it, but I agree, the hole is too deep. I thought about making an adjustable button of sorts. I but I don't shoot this guy very much, it's just a fun gun. So I figured this approach would last a long time. I'd like to see photos of your adjustable bearing Mike. Maybe I'll take that approach on the next one I do. Thanks
Steve
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45 Dragoon
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« Reply #9 on: July 04, 2015, 09:03:42 am »

Ndnchf,
 I don't want you to be confused about the adjustable bearing. The arbor length thing is a permanent fix. That is the secret for the opentop (so it shouldn't be adjustable).
The "bearing" I'm talking about is the front bearing surface for the wedge to contact (front most part of the wedge keyway in the arbor). For this, I drill and tap a hole in the end of the arbor (same as for your button approach) and install a 1/4" set screw (cutting end rounded).  

     -an aside: since you added material to your arbor, your wedge was too tight. The opposite happens when you bring the bottom of the hole up. The finished product generally allows the wedge to bottom out. Rather than an oversized wedge, this "adjustable bearing" is the fix and will allow you to compensate for wear and thus, your wedge will stay your wedge.-

Now, the wedge is against the front point and the two rear points (both sides of the barrel assembly). This triangulation keeps the two assys. together but the arbor is the conduit for the force (from firing) and allows the opentop to opperate like a solid frame revolver.

Hope this makes sense.

BTW, all you'd have to do is remove the button, open the already there hole to appropriate size for fine thread 1/4" set screw, fill in the too long hole (the appropriate amount of steel (ie. the button minus the stud) held in place with a little JB Weld) and can even fine tune (by dressing the arbor down ) to a set bbl/cyl clearance.
 My specs. we're arrived at from setting up my converted (Kirst Gated conv.) Dragoons for shooting .45 Colt smokless ammo. Smokless is a little harder on a weapon so tight tolerances are a must for longevity. Seems like the same specs work as well for c&b.

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com

Sorry, forgot it's a '49 we're posting about. A #10 f.t. set screw is the ticket.  1/4" ers  for Navy's and up.
The large size set screw gives the wedge an appropriate bearing surface area.
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ndnchf
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« Reply #10 on: July 04, 2015, 04:54:20 pm »

Mike - thanks for the explanation, I follow you. Very clever, i'll keep that in mind.
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Navy Six
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« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2015, 04:07:28 pm »

NDNCHF, thanks for the info. The pictures are a particular help in clearing things up. Just treated myself to one of these for Fathers Day but am embarrassed to say I haven't taken it out of the box yet!! Embarrassed Better get down to the basement and get to work!
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ndnchf
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« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2015, 07:06:31 pm »

NDNCHF, thanks for the info. The pictures are a particular help in clearing things up. Just treated myself to one of these for Fathers Day but am embarrassed to say I haven't taken it out of the box yet!! Embarrassed Better get down to the basement and get to work!

I'm curious to hear if Uberti has corrected the short arbor/too deep hole problem yet. They are beautiful little pistols, congrats on getting one.
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Pettifogger
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« Reply #13 on: July 10, 2015, 08:47:54 pm »

I'm curious to hear if Uberti has corrected the short arbor/too deep hole problem yet. They are beautiful little pistols, congrats on getting one.

Nope.  I know this has been discussed with Uberti by one of their largest U.S. distributors and the response was they don't think there is a problem.
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45 Dragoon
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« Reply #14 on: July 10, 2015, 09:22:57 pm »

Hmmmm, . . . . . all of the Ubertis I work on have the issue.  Wonder what they are talking about?

Some of the Piettas are really good and just dressing the arbor will get them to my spec.

Go figure . . .

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com
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Pettifogger
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« Reply #15 on: July 10, 2015, 09:59:36 pm »

Hmmmm, . . . . . all of the Ubertis I work on have the issue.  Wonder what they are talking about?

Some of the Piettas are really good and just dressing the arbor will get them to my spec.

Go figure . . .

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com

Yep, they all have it, and the problem was explained in detail.  However, the Uberti rep said there was no problem.  Go figure some more.  Smiley
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rbertalotto
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« Reply #16 on: July 11, 2015, 05:56:27 am »

I have two sets of 1860 Piettas and all four had arbors that were too long. A judicious use of a file solved the issue.

Very nice work BTW.....
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Roy B
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« Reply #17 on: February 09, 2016, 08:28:06 pm »

Super job
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Coffinmaker
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« Reply #18 on: February 10, 2016, 03:19:00 pm »

45Dragoon and I work to achieve the same thing.  A gun that works like it was designed to, only better.  I started working on Open Tops (cartridge guns) because no one else seemed interested in making them run.  I, on the other hand, was using them as my main match guns.  Once set up, the run just as good as any other cartridge gun.

I have yet to encounter a Uberti built Open Top, Conversion or Cap Gun with correct barrel/arbor fit.  Never.  The reason Uberti said "there isn't a problem" is compliance with manufacturing tolerance and the assembly line assembly process, with basic labor.  The boys and girls
that assemble Uberti guns are not technicians.  They just put the parts together.  There is no skilled set up.  After assembly, if it cycles, it's
good.  So, as Pettifogger and I are want to state, your buying a KIT.  Some finishing required.  Uberti guns take a LOT of finish work to
make them run well.

ALWAYS... I do mean ALWAYS!!  Before anything else is done, the Barrel to Arbor fit MUST be addressed and corrected.  You will often hear, from some near-do-well know-at-all, all you have to do is tap the wedge in, then back it back out to the retaining screw.  STUPID!!
If you do that, every time you take the gun apart for cleaning, you get a different gun when you put it back together.  Get it right at the start and down the road you'll have a very reliable fun gun.

Pietta, is much easier to set up.  Much less work.  Also sets up for Coil Spring and Plunger on the hand.  Couple of judicious licks with a file will set the barrel/arbor fit and the rest just fall into place.

I'll get off my soap box now.  HAPPY WEDNESDAY!!  Use to be "HUMP" day, but I don't work for a living anymore  Cool

Coffinmaker
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greyhawk
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« Reply #19 on: June 03, 2017, 05:12:13 am »

Ndnchf,
 
     -an aside: since you added material to your arbor, your wedge was too tight. The opposite happens when you bring the bottom of the hole up. The finished product generally allows the wedge to bottom out. Rather than an oversized wedge, this "adjustable bearing" is the fix and will allow you to compensate for wear and thus, your wedge will stay your wedge.-

Dragoon - I am having a lot of trouble figuring that bit ? there is space between the end of the arbor and the bottom of the arbor hole -yes got that bit- so we eliminate the excess space by using washers in the hole or a button on the end of the arbor (I used washers) - so far so good - but how does it make any difference to the wedge engagement - I cant see that at all ! to pursue it further all we need do is cut the little tit off the button and it becomes a washer - somethin or someone has got me fooled good here.   

Now, the wedge is against the front point and the two rear points (both sides of the barrel assembly). This triangulation keeps the two assys. together but the arbor is the conduit for the force (from firing) and allows the opentop to opperate like a solid frame revolver.

I like this! adjusting the wedge like this - smart! 

BTW, all you'd have to do is remove the button, open the already there hole to appropriate size for fine thread 1/4" set screw, fill in the too long hole (the appropriate amount of steel (ie. the button minus the stud) held in place with a little JB Weld) and can even fine tune (by dressing the arbor down ) to a set bbl/cyl clearance.

Do we get to a point here somewhere where it becomes prudent to dress the front of the frame? Shortening the arbor is really just tilting the barrel assembly? and closing the gap at the top   
thanks
Greyhawk

 My specs. we're arrived at from setting up my converted (Kirst Gated conv.) Dragoons for shooting .45 Colt smokless ammo. Smokless is a little harder on a weapon so tight tolerances are a must for longevity. Seems like the same specs work as well for c&b.

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com

Sorry, forgot it's a '49 we're posting about. A #10 f.t. set screw is the ticket.  1/4" ers  for Navy's and up.
The large size set screw gives the wedge an appropriate bearing surface area.
[/i]
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45 Dragoon
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« Reply #20 on: June 03, 2017, 09:23:37 am »

Greyhawk,
  No need to be fooled here.
Adding material to the arbor removes the ability for the slot to open (it was opening too far in the first place). This means you may need to dress the wedge to fit again.
Adding material to fill in (shorten) the arbor hole allows the slot to open more (you over fill and dress the arbor to correct length). This means a new oversize wedge or custom wedge. The adjustable bearing solves the problem and gives more options. 

As far as the barrel being tilted, think about what you're doing. If the arbor hole is filled in to make it less deep, dressing the ( now too long) arbor down to fit is really bringing it back in line close to where it was in the first place. Likewise, adding material to the end of the arbor and dressing it down is achieving the same thing. You're bringing everything back pretty much to the same place. The whole point of this modification is to arrive at the same "place" every single time you re-install the barrel assay. and end up with a revolver that behaves as if it were a single unit.

Hope this helps.

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com
Follow me on Instagram @ goonsgunworks
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