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Old May 15, 2017, 07:16 PM   #1
Tinbucket
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Slicking up a Vaquero

Old Vaquero.88-89 mfg.
I tired a 1873 copy in stainless, can't pull out the brand right now.
Slicker than butter but bank vault tight and light hammer and lighter trigger pull.
Of course it has the old school firing pin on the hammer like the Colt it copies.
The Vaquero has the transfer bar system of all current Rugers.
It is fairly tight in clearances.
The trigger pull is stout and the hammer, well you won't be fanning this gun.
It takes a little bit of ump to cock the hammer, in comparison to the Uberti, well I did pull up the brand.
So will spring kit change do the job, of making this gritty single action, slicker than snail snot and easy cocking and a bit lighter trigger?
Who makes a spring kit? And if that won't do what else is in order?
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Old May 15, 2017, 08:44 PM   #2
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Just to put my observations in context: I've owned a stainless Vaquero 45 for about 20 years now and it is perhaps my most heavily used firearm. It always gets to go, and it always gets shot, even if no other arms get used. I lightened the trigger pull on it by using the Poor-Boy Trigger Job method. It worked just fine for me and has been 100% reliable for many thousands of rounds. As for the hammer pull, I like it just the way it came. Since it has a coil spring, its pull weight increases, or, "stacks", evenly with the maximum pull weight at the full-cock position, Much like the draw weight of a conventional re-curve bow or long-bow. I once had a Colt SAA of 1902 vintage that struck me as being quite different in that the leaf-spring and hammer arrangement provided a cocking pressure more like a compound bow. On your Vaquero, you could change out the hammer-spring, or clip a coil off, but that would be against my recommendation. I say, just get used to it. There's nothing wrong with it. Additionally, I'm of the opinion that fanning is either an abusive stunt, or a joke that we talk about but never do. "Save those bullets that have minor imperfections for your fannin' ammo, and only remelt the worst ones." You'll see plenty of it in western movies; the modern equivalent is the TV hoodlum holding his pistol sideways.
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Old May 15, 2017, 08:45 PM   #3
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You might find this useful: http://www.gunblast.com/Poorboy.htm
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Old May 15, 2017, 09:08 PM   #4
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Quote:
well you won't be fanning this gun.
Unless you've had the gun modified to take it, you shouldn't be fanning any gun. You may get away with it for a while, but eventually, something will break. Fanning is a Hollywood stunt, looks cool, beats the gun to death really quick. Of course, they don't care if they damage a PROP gun.

Research "poor boy /poorman's" trigger job, that might give you some ideas.
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Old May 15, 2017, 09:18 PM   #5
Bob Wright
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Whatever you do, NEVER try to fan a Blackhawk or Super Blackhawk!




That rear sight will eat up the heel of your hand.

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Old May 15, 2017, 09:46 PM   #6
mulespurs
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Research for you

Look up some Bob Munden videoes. He also was on the " Impossible Shots" tv show that was on for a while.
Bob is gone now but there was a cowboy action shooter from California that could hit 100 yard targets while fanning.
Its your gun, you can pound nails to hold wanted posters up and fan it if you want to, I might not want to use mine that way.
Practice,practice, practice and be safe.
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Old May 15, 2017, 09:53 PM   #7
Tinbucket
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I have no intention of fanning the gun. Just illustration of the hammer spring being rather hefty.

Last edited by Tinbucket; May 16, 2017 at 04:10 AM.
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Old May 16, 2017, 08:25 AM   #8
rclark
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You can buy lighter hammer springs. Part of the tune up I get on my guns is a lighter hammer spring. The gotcha of course is to light causes light firing pin hits which can cause mis-fires, but usually you can lighten them up, and factory is 'usually' heavier than needed.
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Old May 16, 2017, 08:33 AM   #9
Jim Watson
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A lot of people are happy with weaker springs, but a real action job smooths all the contact surfaces and sets engagement angles to maximize the mechanical advantage.
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Old May 16, 2017, 08:37 AM   #10
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Before changing anything on your revolver, keep in mind that any changes will most likely cause other changes.
Unless you're needing to be able to cock the hammer faster, what's the hurry?
Are you using this gun for Cowboy matches, or maybe Steel Challenge?
If not and if it's a fairly new gun, you might just let it wear in on it's own for improvement without messing with it.
Swapping parts often leads to surprises, and not the good kind.
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Old May 16, 2017, 01:56 PM   #11
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Quote:
A lot of people are happy with weaker springs, but a real action job smooths all the contact surfaces and sets engagement angles to maximize the mechanical advantage.
Absolutely. Why all my shooters have went through a local gun smith (Munden Enterprises) ... which includes new springs as part of the process. With a lighter hammer pull, smooth action, and a 2# trigger with no discernible creep... Ahhh doesn't get any better,
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Old May 16, 2017, 11:13 PM   #12
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Back in the late 70s or perhaps the 80s there was an excellent article on slickin' up the Blackhawk in one of the GUN DIGEST annuals, though I cannot find, and do not remember exactly which one.

It covered all the things needed to be looked at and polished, including hammer strut and various pawls and plungers. I followed the directions with some stones, and the result was a VERY slick Ruger, with a 12.5lb no creep trigger pull and without replacing ANY springs.

Been shooting the gun since 83, mostly with 1000-1100fps loads, without a single issue or malfunction, period.
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Old May 17, 2017, 01:23 AM   #13
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Do you want to change that decimal point? I couldn't abide with a twelve-and-a-half-pound trigger pull.....
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Old May 17, 2017, 05:46 AM   #14
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Yeah, the single action trigger pull on my Ruger 357 Security-Six is only 4 pounds. Smooth as glass, no creep, breaks clean and crisp and no over-travel.
Most of my guns have a 4 pound pull. Any less than that and I can't feel the trigger before it goes off. That's from using my hands to make a living.
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Old May 17, 2017, 05:47 AM   #15
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For $125 or so plus shipping, I'd let a professional do it. I've always used Bob James in Arizona.
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Old May 17, 2017, 11:07 AM   #16
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Quote:
Do you want to change that decimal point? I couldn't abide with a twelve-and-a-half-pound trigger pull.....
Neither could I, and no, I don't want to change the decimal point. I want to change the units! My bad, it was late when I wrote it, and didn't catch the mistake. Thanks for catching it!

The gun has a 12.5 OUNCE trigger pull (scaled). This was not a pull weight I sought, just what I got when the gun was reassembled. Some might think it too light, but its been working well for me for over 30 years. On another gun (other than a Contender) I would think it too light, but on that Blackhawk its just ...right, somehow.

I have other Blackhawks and Vaqueros that I have not done a complete "slick up" job on, and their pull weights are in the 3-4lb "normal" range. Never changed any springs on ANY of them.

Good catch Pathfinder45, I guess someone is actually reading what I write!
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Old May 17, 2017, 03:13 PM   #17
Pathfinder45
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I always try to read your posts closely, as I respect your views, even if mine have their own flavors. I prefer my trigger pulls to be at least 2 pounds but not more than 4. I shoot better in that range.
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Old May 17, 2017, 03:51 PM   #18
ShootistPRS
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I used my revolver in competition. Trigger pull had to be at least 4 pounds.
i got so used to it that most of my guns are set to 4 pound triggers.
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Old May 17, 2017, 05:32 PM   #19
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Wolff has spring kits for the Vaquero/Blackhawk. Does anyone know what the factory weights are for the hammer spring and trigger return spring?

For hammer springs, Wolff's light choices are 17, 18, and 19 pounds. They also offer a "mid-range reduced power" kit with 19, 20, and 21 pound springs. Their extra-power hammer springs begin at 24 pounds and go up from there, so would factory be maybe 22 pounds? Assuming that to be the case, what would be a good weight to reduce hammer effort but still ensure reliable ignition?

For the trigger return spring, Wolff offers 30-ounce and 40-ounce reduced power springs. Again, does anyone know what the factory springs are?

What combination of the above would be a good choice to lighten the hammer somewhat and end up with a trigger at right around 4 pounds?


[Edit to add]Farther down on the Wolff web site I found that they say the factory hammer spring is 23-pound. So that's the same as a 1911, and generally in a 1911 a 19-pound hammer spring is reliable. same true for a Vaquero/Blackhawk?
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