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Old October 12, 2009, 12:50 PM   #1
zombiehunter
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Ruger MkIII 22/45 Hunter-Mainspring Housing Problem

I know, I know, it seems like a new Ruger Mk disassembly/reassembly question gets posted every few weeks. I've searched around the forum and found a couple threads on disassembly/reassembly issues with MkIII Targets and 22/45 Hunters, and I think I've got a problem somewhat similar to Tintop's in this thread, except on my 22/45 model so I don't have removable grip plates.

I disassembled the pistol (for my first time) after putting a few hundred rounds through it because I wanted to see what the fuss was about. There were no problems with disassembly - I stopped after removing the mainspring housing and the bolt, saw no reason to remove the barrel. Then without any noticeable trouble I reassembled it (really I don't remember if I was holding the barrel up while decocking the hammer - I've been monkeying with this for so many hours now that I can't recall) and function checked it. After pulling the bolt back (with mag out) the bolt wouldn’t slam home without some light manual assistance from my left thumb. I thought, "Damn, I must have missed something in the reassembly I guess that's what the fuss is about." So I tried to re-disassemble and this is where I ran into my problem. Now the mainspring housing won’t swing free from the grip. Safety’s off, internal lock is off, tried it with mag in and mag out, but the mainspring housing will only swing out about 3/8” before it gets hung up and won't travel any farther. To make things more exciting, the hammer won’t decock – no firing pin click - in dry fire (with mag in, safety off, and internal lock off), either – which I’m suspecting may be the reason the mainspring housing won’t swing free. Although, the bolt doesn't get hung up (easily slams home after charging it back with mag out) when the mainspring housing is swung out that 3/8".

Here's a pic of what I'm dealing with. (And yes, the marred frame is from me getting frustrated and rammy while trying to pry the mainspring housing free - really ****** me off at myself for letting my impatience mark up the polymer frame.)



I took it to one of my local gun shops, who’s usually really good with challenges, but he wasn’t able to get it to swing free and recommended sending it into Ruger. Before I do that though, I wanted to check and see if you guys had any clever ideas on getting this sucker re-disassembled. If it is a cocked hammer keeping the mainspring housing from swinging free, then is it possible to decock the hammer (without using the trigger) by manually going up through the mag well or down through the receiver? Thanks in advance, guys.
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Old October 12, 2009, 12:55 PM   #2
zukiphile
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Quote:
(And yes, the marred frame is from me getting frustrated and rammy while trying to pry the mainspring housing free - really ****** me off at myself for letting my impatience mark up the polymer frame.)
The 22/45 is designed to so thoroughly mimick the .45 experience that it lets you mar the frame the first time you re-assemble it.

Take it apart and try again, making sure that the hammer strut is resting in the little detent above the mainspring. You should get stiff resistance only when the mainspring housing is about an eighth of an inch from flush with the frame.
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Old October 12, 2009, 01:00 PM   #3
zombiehunter
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Quote:
The 22/45 is designed to so thoroughly mimick the .45 experience that it lets you mar the frame the first time you re-assemble it.

Take it apart and try again, making sure that the hammer strut is resting in the little detent above the mainspring. You should get stiff resistance only when the mainspring housing is about an eighth of an inch from flush with the frame.
Heh. Yeah, I suppose the experience is that thoroughly mimicked.

I'd love to take it apart and try it again... but my problem is that it will not come apart. The mainspring housing won't swing any farther out than shown in the above picture. It seems to be caught on something internally.
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Old October 12, 2009, 02:27 PM   #4
Joat
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Try this page for troubleshooting the MkIII assembly and disassembly. If that doesn't get you running, they have a forum.

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Old October 12, 2009, 03:07 PM   #5
NWPilgrim
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The Gun Talk troubleshooting pages should help you solve your problem. I used Step #1 repeatedly on a Mk III 22/45 until it slipped into place.

If you read the other Mk III threads they will eventually have a link to this same troubleshooting page. It is the solution.

The problem is that the hammer needs to be in the uncocked, upright position. But the new magazine safety makes it easy, almost inevitable that the hammer will fall back down into the cocked position.

When assembling you need to use a punch or something to push the hammer upright just before inserting the housing latch assembly. Once you have it stuck you need to follow the instruction on the web page in the precise sequence described.

You will need to (not in actual sequence, see web page for that) remove and re-insert the mag, pull the trigger, point it downward, bang the muzzle on a wood block, turn it upside down and shake it. Basically, you are trying to jar the hammer into the forward/upright position. Then you should be able to finish assembly. I would disassemble and reassemble according to the linked assembly pages (from the troubleshooting page) so you fully understand what is happening and how to avoid this next time.


It is absolutely a probelm with the hammer in the wrong position, and it can fairly easily be jarred into the correct position, even though right now it feels so jammed you can't imagine it coming unstuck short of a cutting torch.
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Old October 12, 2009, 03:39 PM   #6
zombiehunter
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Thanks!

Joat/NWPilgrim - You guys rock! Thanks so much. That's exactly what my problem is. This evening when I get home, I'll give #1 a shot and beat the muzzle on a block until the hammer falls into the forward position. I'll let you guys know how it goes.
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Old October 12, 2009, 06:52 PM   #7
zombiehunter
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Success

It worked! Yeah, it did feel like it would take a cutting torch, but a few good wacks of the muzzle on my carpeted floor worked like a charm. Trigger fell forward and the mainspring housing swung free. This time I paid more attention to orientation on reassembly and it cycles pefectly - only evidence of trouble is my personalized marring on the grip. Thanks for your help gentlemen!
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Old October 12, 2009, 06:59 PM   #8
NWPilgrim
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Now you know why on a Monday morning you see all those Mk IIIs lying in the gutter at the bottom of driveways on the way to work.

Joat's linked page should be a sticky on every firearms board.

Congrats on fixing your Ruger. Now you can have a ton of fun with it.
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Old October 12, 2009, 07:06 PM   #9
murphjup
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I had the same problem, except somehow I had turned the safety back on...

The mainspring was stuck, in the same position, but I used a wooden dowel to hammer the top pin back through, releasing the Spring.

I write notes on my printed instructions to help me along, it'd really not difficult, but if you get things out of order, it can become problematic...

Glad it worked out.

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Old October 12, 2009, 09:34 PM   #10
zombiehunter
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Quote:
Joat's linked page should be a sticky on every firearms board.
+1 on that. I actually printed it out and stuck it in the manual so I've got a copy if I ever have another problem.

Quote:
Congrats on fixing your Ruger. Now you can have a ton of fun with it.
Absolutely! The first few hundred rounds were lots of fun... and now to customize it... starting with disabling that pesky mag disconnect!
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Old October 13, 2009, 09:58 AM   #11
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Glad I could help. Enjoy the Ruger.

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Old June 4, 2011, 06:55 PM   #12
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Sorry for digging up this old thread, but I wanted to say thank you. I recently started shooting (age 42!) and picked up a Ruger Mark III 22/45. Great gun. Finally decided to clean it and, well...you know the story. I ended up having several of the problems on the troubleshooting list, I wouldn't have been able to get it back together without them. Many thanks.

Now, next time I just have to manage to get the barrel off...
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Old June 4, 2011, 11:12 PM   #13
NWPilgrim
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Now, next time I just have to manage to get the barrel off...
I believe the owner manual states you may need to use a non-marring mallet to whack it off. My Mk III barrel came off no problem, ut my SIL's Mk III 22/45 needed a few sharp whacks with a plastic head hammer to nudge it off the frame.
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Old June 5, 2011, 07:44 PM   #14
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Barrel removal

1. CLAMP FRAME "GENTLY" IN PADDED VISE JAWS.
2. HOLD MALLET (rubber, plastic, or hard rawhide) IN YOUR RIGHT HAND & GRASP MUZZLE END FIRMLY IN LEFT HAND.
3. LIGHTLY BUT FIRMLY TAP THE BREECH END OF THE BARREL WITH THE MALLET
4. MAINTAIN CONTROL OF BARREL WITH LEFT HAND, AS IT BEGINS TO MOVE FORWARD.
5. CONTINUE TAPPING UNTIL THE BARREL COMES OFF THE FRAME.

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Old June 7, 2011, 06:31 PM   #15
Jolly Rogers
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I'd be real carefull about clamping the frame of a MK III 22/45 in a vise. Real carefull.
Like I probably wouldn't.
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Old September 3, 2011, 08:25 PM   #16
FliesLikeABrick
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I know this thread is old and has gotten bumped occasionally - but it's one of the top google hits for "22/45 can't remove mainspring housing" and I have an important but not unexpected detail to highlight -

I tried the "insert empty magazine, hold trigger and tap muzzle-down against a non-marking surface" a few times and was very sad that it wasn't working. Then I realized that at least in the mk3 and 22/45 this *won't* work if at some point during your troubleshooting you turned the safety back on. Just like for the normal field stripping process the safety must be off, otherwise the hammer cannot drop back into the correct position.
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Old September 5, 2011, 05:07 PM   #17
drail
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"clamp frame "gently" but firmly in a vise" and then firmly whack it with a hammer. Bad idea. After tearing down Ruger Mks for many years I can tell you there is no reason to clamp the frame in a vise. I just hold the frame in my hand and inch or so above a padded benchtop and tap the barrel with a plastic or rawhide mallet. If it requires more force than that then the reciever needs some fitting work.
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Old August 25, 2012, 08:16 AM   #18
Soggybottomboy
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Here is the Video ANSWER to this problem

Is your mainspring housing not moving but 3/8" away from the grip? I show you a step by step instructional on how to fix this issue and the proper reassembly. I know this will help. Watch and enjoy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xEQVARq5dLM
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Old August 29, 2012, 05:03 PM   #19
Rocky1927
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Thanks!

Thank you all for posting this. It saved my bacon and kept my 22/45 from being tossed into the river!
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