View Full Version : Ruger Red Label firing pin

March 14, 2007, 11:25 AM
I have an early (400 prefix) 20g Red Label. I have fired a lot of rounds at skeet and quail. The lower firing pin is apparently worn and the bottom bbl often does not fire. Ruger has been less than helpful in supplying a firing pin. I am considering making one as it is a simple item. Input??

March 14, 2007, 11:46 AM
Firing pins are not that difficult to make, but disassembling the action and reassembling it are quite challenging. My advice would be to send it to Ruger and let them repair it.

March 14, 2007, 11:59 AM
Thanx, Scorch. While I am not a bonified smith I have had several courses. I have disassembeld the Red Label - and it is not simple unless one has needle nosed fingers! - and polished/honed/etc. Really disappointedly rough inside compared to others I play with. 'Make' sounds like a good expereince for me. Can't hurt anything!

March 14, 2007, 11:42 PM
May be the spring for the firing pin also. Check and see. I would let Ruger fix but that is me.

March 15, 2007, 12:46 AM
While I am not a bonified smith I have had several courses.

Clearly you have had more training than most of us, but I'd still take it to a competent smithy. It's a few bucks well spent, and they don't usually charge all that much.

As for making your own firing pin? Good luck. That's not a small undertaking to do it right. If it's not broken, then I would first suspect the spring.

March 15, 2007, 10:53 AM
I have switched springs ... little return spring and hammer spring. Appears that the lower pin is simply blunted. I thought perhaps debris in the action but that has not proven true. This is a very simple pin, 'make time' on a lathe estimated at not more then 30 minutes. It is a 15 miunte job to change it ... if Ruger would sell me one:barf: . Keep the advice coming!

March 17, 2007, 07:10 AM
I competed with a Red Label years ago. I had to send mine to Ruger after about 25,000 rounds. They had to replace the pins and springs in it. All I had in it was the shipping to them. No charge for the service at that time. That was in 1993.

March 17, 2007, 01:25 PM
Thanx. I may have to do that. At present it is disassembeled to the receiver frame and on my workbench. Gonna try a couple more things before Ruger gets it for a few months. Darn near bought a used early model yesterday for $900 so I have parts! Not that I am gunless w/o it, I just hate to do the shipping bit ... and really get POed that Ruger will not supply parts to me or a gunshop. Have a W101 in 20g but the Ruger feels a bit better. Plus, once you get used to that looseness it is kinda nice.

March 18, 2007, 03:59 AM
Thinking back, I think Ruger had to replace the cocking cams on my gun also. They had a tendency to wear and not let the pin drop with 100% force to hit the primer.

March 18, 2007, 11:38 AM
Thanx, I have it all apart and will check throughly. I would think cocked is cocked, but ...
Will also polish a bit more ... the inside of the Ruger leaves a bit to be desired compared to a BRN or Winc. Remove some 'drag'. The firing pin seems to extend plenty far into the chamber area when pushed by hand and nothing seems to blocking its movement so you might think firing pin spring. I will switch upper and lower as a trial. The upper hammer is longer and will have a different fall motion/pattern so a slightly weakened spring should not interfere with the upper bbl firing as much (my engineer brain sez!?). If it does then I have isolated the problem.
I still think firing pin and see that the hammer end of the lower pin is a bit more beat up. Ruger gives these pins different part numbers but the diffrence is not obvious to the Mk1 eyeball. No, I will not switch them.
I have trap guns with as many rounds through them as your Ruger but my Ruger would be [only] about half that as I had 3200s/101s/1100s/Citori's ... that I used lot at skeet, too. Says somehting good for the durability of all these great firearms!