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Old May 16, 2020, 03:01 PM   #1
jkwhaley
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My unicorn .357

I have a certain soft spot for the Interarms Virginian Dragoons. I've never seen a .357 (although) I knew they exist, until lately. I got one recently (in the elusive blued version, no less) and the timing was all screwed up.

I took it apart and found the trigger spring broken, not an uncommon thing for single actions of this style, and Wolff had one that fit!

Long story short, I installed the trigger spring, and now when it's cocked, it locks up solid as a rock. As soon as I pull the trigger, before the hammer falls completely, the cylinder rotates back a few degrees. It's sort of like the hand tension disappears when I pull the trigger.

I'd like to know if any of you single action fans have ever encountered this or have some idea what may be going on. I'd really like to shoot it since my .45 LC and my .44 Mag need a functioning little (ha!) brother.

Any suggestions that don't involve replacing it with a Super Blackhawk are welcome.

Best regards...

...Jamesy

Last edited by jkwhaley; May 16, 2020 at 03:09 PM.
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Old May 16, 2020, 03:27 PM   #2
Dufus
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Quote:
Any suggestions that don't involve replacing it with a Super Blackhawk are welcome.
OK, since the SBH doesn't exist in 357 Mag, how about replacing it with a Blackhawk??
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Old May 16, 2020, 03:47 PM   #3
jkwhaley
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Naaah. Too much time and money into this thing. I've ordered a new hand spring and pin from Jack First since that's the only other thing I can think of (the hand shows very little wear). I picked up a Wrangler in .22, but other than that all my Rugers are double action.
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Old May 16, 2020, 04:13 PM   #4
jaguarxk120
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Check the lockup at the bolt.
The hand is doing what it is right.
The hand is attached to the hammer and will pull back
when the hammer falls.
Seems as if the problem is the bolt is not locking into the cylinder cuts.
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Old May 16, 2020, 04:20 PM   #5
jkwhaley
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Since the spring for the hammer is also the spring for the bolt, and the arms bend in opposite directions, would this sort of thing be likely if I installed the spring upside down?
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Old May 16, 2020, 04:21 PM   #6
Drm50
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If cylinder is backing off I might be looking at cylinder latch/ stop. If it’s seating the cylinder should be locked. Never had a VD apart but I assume it’s similar to old model Ruger BH. If spring you bought isn’t correct it could be the cause. Running gears in SAs fairly simple.
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Old May 16, 2020, 04:23 PM   #7
jkwhaley
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I'll pull that spring out and check for orientation. Thanks for a new direction to look!
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Old May 16, 2020, 04:38 PM   #8
jaguarxk120
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The spring for the bolt/cylinder latch/stop and trigger are one piece with two arms.
Has nothing to do with the hammer spring.
Cimarron calls it a trigger/bolt spring part no. SAA5287B
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Old May 16, 2020, 09:14 PM   #9
stephen426
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I've heard of the Rhino, but never the Unicorn... Sorry, couldn't resist.
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The ATF should be a convenience store instead of a government agency!
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Old May 16, 2020, 09:29 PM   #10
CorvZ061
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I’m sorry I don’t have an answer for you, however I do have a VD in 44 mag that is in desperate need of some grip panels. Any idea what will fit it?
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Old May 17, 2020, 06:14 AM   #11
DWFan
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CorvZ061, the best grips for the Dragoon are here...
https://www.eaglegrips.com/88-virgin...revolver-grips

These folks might make you a set of panels if you send them a tracing. They also have blanks so you can make your own....
https://www.tombstonegrips.com/terms.htm

Last edited by DWFan; May 17, 2020 at 07:05 AM.
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Old May 17, 2020, 09:24 AM   #12
Grizzly2
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There is supposed to be a gunsmith in Virginia who used to work for Interarms back in the day. He is mentioned in threads about the Rossi 720. The discussions were about broken sights or broken firing pins. He might be able to pin your problem down for you.

Good luck fixing your hard to find unicorn. I haven't handled one of those VDs since the late 70's or early 80's. Like many, I went the "other" way with a SBH. My search though was the opposite of yours. I was looking for a .44 back then when the lgs had three Abilene .357s. The bluing on those was beautiful, but I had to have a big bore.
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Old May 17, 2020, 10:24 AM   #13
jkwhaley
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There are several folks on gunbroker selling grips. If fake ivory is to your taste, they have them.
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Old May 17, 2020, 10:28 AM   #14
jkwhaley
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jaguarxk120, that was a brain fart on my part. Of course I didn't mean the hammer spring. You are correct in what I meant was the trigger/bolt spring.
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Old May 18, 2020, 03:36 PM   #15
GarrettJ
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I had one of those. It was the fixed sight model in .357, not the adjustable-sighted Dragoon. It was the first handgun I bought, at the age of 18.

Mine also developed a crack in the trigger return / cylinder stop spring. This was in the early days of the Internet, and looking for parts still involved going to gun shops and seeing what they had in their parts bins.

Most of the Colt-style springs I tried were just a little too big. It took a bit of time but I eventually found one and got it up running again.

The thing shot well and had an excellent trigger. But I figured if it took that long to find replacement parts, I’d be better off with something else. The next gun show I traded it off toward a Blackhawk .45 Convertible, which I still have 25-ish years later.
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Old May 18, 2020, 04:11 PM   #16
jkwhaley
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Well, I've accumulated several different trigger/bolt springs from Wolff and Heine. The new hand spring and plunger came in today from Jack First, so I'm going to see what works and what doesn't. Wish me luck!
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