Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L

CAS TOPICS => Gunsmithing => Topic started by: 41Thuer on February 06, 2018, 11:32:43 am

Title: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: 41Thuer on February 06, 2018, 11:32:43 am
I realise this may have been done to death but please cut me a little slack as I search for a solution to my problem.

I have what I believe to be the only one of these rifles - a carbine in .45 Colt - in shootable (or non-shootable as you will see) condition in the UK. The importer brought in four examples around 2010 and I grabbed one for a magazine review. I did not put a great deal of rounds through it but was very impressed. I returned it to the shop and all four were subsequently sold but almost immediately complaints began to come in. Shooters complained of light strikes and it seemed that the odd shaped firing pin was bending at the arch. Bottom line was that all guns were returned and purchasers refunded the cash.
Much communication with Uberti and several new firing pins failed to solve the problem with the result that three of the guns were de-activated (for that read butchered, cut and made into wall hangers). A couple of weeks ago I found out that the fourth gun was still in the importer's possession and made an offer for it which was accepted.

What I would like to know if any one over there has had this problem and if so is there a remedy? I tried the gun last week and sure enough had failed ignitions. I have a new firing pin but do not want to put it in the rifle and risk bending it as I think it's the last one available short of paying $50 for another. It is possible that I can get one made from a stronger material but I'm looking to see who runs this model over there and how you find it. I'm not looking for a speed gun, I'd just like it to go off every time I pull the trigger.

Any and all help will be greatly appreciated.

41 Thuer
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Pettifogger on February 06, 2018, 08:34:30 pm
I did an article for the Cowboy Chronicle when these first came out.  Like many things I think the early ones had problems and Uberti ultimately fixed them.  You see very few of them as they are not terribly reliable and cannot be shot fast in competition.  If you try to have a firing pin made that $50.00 is going to look real cheap.  I suspect the pins were cast and the problem was with the heat treat.  The first photo shows the firing pin.  The second shows the mainspring that has multibends in it.  This caused some light strikes because it hit the pin it was bent to go over and this lightened the strike.  The weak point when these were first introduced was the ejector, which is the round plunger sticking out of the face of the bolt.  This was very brittle and broke after just a moderate amount of shooting.  They are not popular so I have not messed with one in several years. 
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: 41Thuer on February 07, 2018, 03:42:23 am
Thanks, Pettifogger
I saw your article and printed it. I hoped there would be one or two folks using them that could come up with a cure. I can probably get the firing pin made for free.

41Thuer
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Slamfire on February 07, 2018, 03:47:29 pm
 Hey 41..I would check the length of the fireing pin ..use a case w/o a primer..put a piece of tape ( masking- painter's tape  their about .005 ths. thick ) over primer hole ..see if it punches all the way thru the tape.. no need to keep bending fireing pins ..just cause the NEW pin is new don't mean it's right ,,,for that rifle . I'd like to see a pic. of your FP's ( bent and new ).
 Mr. pettifogger knows way more than I do about these rifles,,( He has helped me a whole lot w/ other problems ) NO--- I don't own one...yet... just looking at your problem at a diff. angle.



smoke'm if y'a got'm,,,,Hootmix.
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Chance on February 07, 2018, 04:15:29 pm
Thanks for the reply Slamfire. I'll get on it tomorrow.

Chance (reverted to old alias)
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Chance on February 08, 2018, 04:50:53 am
Couple of photos. The pin is new. I am loathe to put it in the rifle at this time in case it goes.

You can see the light strike on the case on the right. I am not sure whether the pins bend permanently or whether they are flexing after a little use. I am trying to get one of the old pins from the supplier.

Chance
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Slamfire on February 08, 2018, 06:41:55 am
 Think the " Mr. Pettifogger" may be right...I looked up the said article.." bad heat treat ". My first look at that FP...sure different looking .


 coffee's ready,,,,Hootmix.
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Chance on February 09, 2018, 04:27:54 pm
Pulled this rifle apart tonight and the mainspring is a standard Winchester style. Trying to get the screw out that holds the firing pin in place I broke a Forster's driver!

Chance

Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Pettifogger on February 10, 2018, 10:21:51 pm
If that is the spring in your rifle it might explain the bent firing pins and the light strikes.  That is not the correct spring.
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Chance on February 11, 2018, 02:56:09 am
I have a breakdown diagram from the Uberti site and this is the pin shown.

Chance
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Slamfire on February 11, 2018, 10:51:27 pm
 Hey Chance,,, go to page 6 of Gun Reviews and scroll down to Burgess Rifle posted by "NCRanger" Nov.-16-2011 might be of help.

 smoke'm if y'a got'm,,,,Hootmix.
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Chance on February 12, 2018, 09:26:55 am
Thanks for that, Slamfire. Everything I read seems to be bad - how come they are still selling this rifle in the US?

Chance
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Pettifogger on February 12, 2018, 09:37:01 am
Thanks for that, Slamfire. Everything I read seems to be bad - how come they are still selling this rifle in the US?

Chance

They sell very few.  Not everyone uses these reproductions for cowboy shooting.  Some people just want an old style lever gun for informal plinking and hunting. 
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Chance on February 12, 2018, 09:59:02 am
That's exactly what this one will be used for - a bit of plinking indoors and out.

Chance
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Coffinmaker on February 12, 2018, 12:39:22 pm

Trust me (The most frightening words in politics), the importers are just selling off existing stock.  When the first "run" of Burgess rifles are gone, they will be "Darwin."
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Slamfire on February 12, 2018, 01:58:29 pm
 HEY !! Chance don't give up on that one I "have more faith in you than you do",,sometimes  the best soul-ation  to a problem is to work on something else then " the light comes on " (that's when we slap our head-duh ". 
 


 smoke'm if y'a got'm ,,,,Hootmix.
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Chance on February 12, 2018, 03:47:34 pm
Don't worry, Slamfire, I'm not giving up. Between myself and a young gun enthusiast/engineer we will get this piece running. May take a while but the work starts tomorrow. I could de-activate it and double my money but I am a lever action/Uberti/Colt fan so this thing is gonna work!

Chance
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Chance on February 17, 2018, 11:50:29 am
Trust me (The most frightening words in politics), the importers are just selling off existing stock.  When the first "run" of Burgess rifles are gone, they will be "Darwin."

Selling off stock after eight years?  ???  It is still advertised on the Uberti site.

Chance
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Chance on February 17, 2018, 11:54:06 am
My young friend polished the internals of this rifle and made one or two 'adjustments' to a couple of small parts. Took it out today and ran 100 rounds through it without missing a beat.

Chance
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Coal Creek Griff on February 17, 2018, 12:21:10 pm
My young friend polished the internals of this rifle and made one or two 'adjustments' to a couple of small parts. Took it out today and ran 100 rounds through it without missing a beat.

Chance

Excellent!  It might be helpful for others if you could give specifics of the work done.  There may be others pounding their heads against the wall trying to figure it out.

CC Griff
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Slamfire on February 17, 2018, 05:50:55 pm
 By " Golly",, the best to you and your friend,,ENJOY,,. What coal creek said !!



 smok'm if y'a got'm,,,,Hootmix.
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Chance on February 18, 2018, 10:38:27 am
OK, firstly go back to my post on the parts diagram (reply #9) and that should read "spring" rather than "pin".

It is a rifle by the way and not a carbine - senior moment in post #1. I was initially led to believe that the repair guy in the importer's had changed a couple of springs on these guns with little or no effect on the long term reliability. Bear in mind this gun has laid around for some eight years so the waters are a little muddy regarding its history.

Anyway, you will see from above that I broke a good screw driver trying to remove the (already boogered) screw holding the firing pin in the bolt so it was then I decided to let my young friend have a look at it. He discovered that this screw had been peined over at the factory so was seemingly not meant to be removed easily, hence the damaged screw head. It also means that the guy at the shop had not removed this screw to change a firing pin and the pin in this rifle is the original. The screw was drilled out - I had a new spare - and when we compared this spring with the new one I had been given there was no appreciable difference in shape. In other words it was not bent. So the repair guy was only assuming that light strikes were caused by a bent pin.   

All internal surfaces of the bolt were smoothed and polished, along with the flat sides of the firing pin where in contacts the bolt. The diameter of the 'pin' was reduced ever so slightly, and again polished, to allow it to move more freely through the ejector. The replacement firing pin screw has a shoulder which was turned down a shade to give a touch more fore and aft movement of the pin.

The extractor is in the top of the bolt and rides on the top curve of the firing pin. The under side of the extractor was polished in this area. On closing the lever we discovered that the bolt was often not going all the way home; only a tiny amount short but maybe enough to cause a light strike. As you will be aware, the .45 Colt case does not have much of a rim and it was found that the extractor was not always clearing the rim. A small amount was taken off the flat rear surface of the extractor hook - problem solved.

I realise that 100 consecutive shots is not an exhaustive test but it is 96 more than I had achieved two weeks ago. Besides which that's all the bullets I had so couldn't reload any more. I'll run it more over the coming weeks and report back.

Load was 8 grains of Unique behind a 255 grain RNFP.

Chance
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Slamfire on February 18, 2018, 03:46:47 pm
 That Sir is a fine report,,,many's a time on this forum " the smithers (is smithers a word) " on here a highly recommend " polishing " and deburing new factory part's ,,,,,1st.,,,. Like Coal Creek said ,,these tips will surely help someone else,,thank's for sharing .


 smoke 'm if y'a got'm,,,,Hootmix.
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: D-Hansen on April 28, 2019, 07:24:59 am
Chance,  thank you for taking the time to post this useful information.  It is very difficult finding much information on the Uberti Burgess rifle.  Any update on yours after more time at the range or field?
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: Cliff Fendley on April 28, 2019, 11:04:31 am
Had the chance to buy a used one and my wife shot it after a match and it had a couple misfires so we passed on it. Glad we did now.
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: D-Hansen on May 19, 2019, 10:50:21 am
What technique did you use when reassembling the lever into the receiver.    I am having trouble with holding the level ball and lever spring into the drilled hole on the lever while attempting to slide the lever into the receiver.  Still have both, but I am afraid that I will lunch the ball and spring across the room if I slip up.  The ball and spring hold the level closed when the ball falls into a detente drilled on the inside of the receiver. The hole in the lever is drilled out to a depth of .335" and the spring is the same length.  So with the ball on the spring it needs to be compressing the spring while the lever is pushed into the receiver.  I was think of using a feeler gauge as a holder, and then slide out the feeler gauge after assembly.  Any better ideas?
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: D-Hansen on May 19, 2019, 11:16:55 am
Well the feeler gauge idea did work.  If there is a better way I am all ears. 
Title: Re: Uberti 1883 Burgess
Post by: DocDucati on June 17, 2019, 07:39:48 pm
Been having 50-50 misfires due to light primer strike on my new Burgess carbine. I will put some attention to the extractor.  I appreciate the tips! I really like this carbine and want to get it to work better.

The edges on the new receiver are like a set of ginsu knives. After my hand was cut up like sushi, I polished these and it's much safer to work with now.