Off centre firing pin strike


May 4, 2013, 03:37 PM
Does the firing pin being off centre have any accuracy, or ignition time effects. This discussion started when a buddy had a gunsmith work up a load for his 270, and was told that to get it to group better he would have to have the bolt head worked to centre the firing pin properly. All my rifles are off centre and seem to group ok. It's not a cheap job so just wondering if it's a scam.

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May 4, 2013, 03:54 PM
The firing pin of a bolt-action rifle? I don't think there's any effect on accuracy based on where (in a very small range) on the primer the pin strikes, but I'd be more concerned about why such a firearm with a rotating bolt wasn't made closer to perfectly concentric.

Is there any more to the explanation?

I mean, yes, you do want things to be as close to perfectly made as possible to achieve best rifle precision. I've just never heard of that being one of the common "tweaks" for improving a rifle. Bedding the action, lapping the bolt lugs, squaring the bolt face, otherwise "blueprinting" the action, lapping the rifling, Setting back the barrel a turn and re-reaming the chamber more precisely, and many other tune-ups are pretty common. Haven't heard of needing to true up the firing pin hole in the bolt face, though.

How far is it off?

May 4, 2013, 11:13 PM
Will try to get a fired case, and post a photo, I remember picking up some of his brass at the range one time and it didnt look "off". The gunsmith "specializes " in load development and accurising. The rifle is a hunting rifle not a benchrest target gun.

May 4, 2013, 11:32 PM
Sounds like shenanigans to me.

It would be very strange for a bolt-action rifles firing pin to be able to be off-center far enough to effect accuracy.

It either goes bang every time?
Or it doesn't.

If it's really off-center far enough to cause mis-fires?
You have a bigger problem then the 'gunsmith' trying to charge you big bucks to fix a hunting rifle that isn't broke.

And the manufacture should address that under warranty if it's that bad.


May 5, 2013, 03:41 AM
No goes bang every time, and hits most of what it's pointed at. My mate has decided not to deal with this bloke anymore. Thanks for the input.

Jim K
May 5, 2013, 09:52 PM
Even giving the gunsmith the benefit of the doubt that he is trying to help his customer, any firing pin that is so little off-center that it is not obvious is not going to affect accuracy. A way off center firing pin strike can cause erratic ignition and even misfires, and accuracy will be affected, and would indicate something seriously wrong with the gun.


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