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Old May 14, 2009, 02:34 PM   #1
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Join Date: May 14, 2009
Posts: 1
Safety issue with Carcano's rifle

Few weeks ago I got hold of a a Carcano rifle, Model 1891/41. Having never own one I wanted to find out what makes a Carcano tick. After clearing up the rifle and reading on what is fact and what is not face about the Carcano. I was going to test fire the rifle. As I was checking out the rifle one thing I notice was when the safety is on, if you pull back on the trigger the firing pin moves forward. To see how dangerous this could be, I put tape on the front of the bolt. Repeated what I had just done. The end of the firing pin had push up the tape over the hole on the bolt face. Did it a third time. This time I hit the back of the bolt with the side of hand, not very hard. The firing pin had put a hole in the tape.
At first I was thinking that something is wrong with my rifle. So I took the rifle apart to check every thing out a third time, everything was fine and working right. The only thing I could come up is a design fault in the Carcano's rifles. Pick your model, the fault would be the same. So what is going on? When the safety is in position the only thing holding back the firing pin is the sear stud and bolt stop. When the tigger is pull back the sear stud and bolt stop drop down letting the firing pin to move forward. This is a dangers fault in Carcano's rifles. So one should be very carefully when carrying a Carcano's rifle with a round in the chamber with the safety on. DON'T pull back on the trigger because the rifle could go off.
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Old May 15, 2009, 02:46 PM   #2
James K
Join Date: March 17, 1999
Posts: 24,279
Hi, Quinn,

When the safety is "ON" on a Carcano, the pressure is completely relieved from the mainspring and the cocking piece/firing pin will not go forward under spring tension. (If it does, the rifle is defective.)

If the safety is "ON" and the trigger is pulled, the cocking piece CAN move forward due to gravity or it CAN be moved forward, so there could be a problem if 1) the safety is ON, 2) the trigger is pulled AND 3) the cocking piece is struck from the rear hard enough to fire the primer.

I am not sure that is a big safety problem, being somewhat in the category of uncocking a Mauser bolt with a round in the chamber. If the cocking piece is then struck, the rifle will fire.

The Carcano was never a world-beating rifle, but they served the Italians well enough in some pretty heavy fighting in WWI.

Jim K
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