H&R "22 special" top break questions


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gibson_es
January 24, 2014, 05:35 PM
Just picked one up. I believe its second variation. (Sn 542xxx). It shows age for sure but looks mechanically sound. Are these guns safe to keep and store loaded? ( is there a block for the fireing pin to prevent it going if if dropped?) I know some may wonder the reason to do so, as Its just a .22. But I feel its a good thing to know. Also, I imagine high volocity .22lr might not be a good idea. But wanted to verify. And would a few here or there hurt? (I have a few loose rounds of 22 and don't know what they are). Reguler, powerless, subsonic, and short should all be safe right?

The cyclender spins freely until hammer is back, this normal for these old guns correct? Not a broken piece in the gun?

And lastly. It looks like, while the blueing is worn off, its in good shape, what's the value at? The guy was asking $185 and I got him to $150. Was that about right? Overpay? Or a good deal?

I only found one on the auction sites, it was $125 I think with $25 shipping and it was missing pieces.


Anything else I should know? Lol.

Here are pics.

http://i748.photobucket.com/albums/xx130/gibson_es/razr%20maxx/IMG_20140124_123143_517_zpsallxfunj.jpg (http://s748.photobucket.com/user/gibson_es/media/razr%20maxx/IMG_20140124_123143_517_zpsallxfunj.jpg.html)

http://i748.photobucket.com/albums/xx130/gibson_es/razr%20maxx/IMG_20140124_123156_864_zpswhyooyaq.jpg (http://s748.photobucket.com/user/gibson_es/media/razr%20maxx/IMG_20140124_123156_864_zpswhyooyaq.jpg.html)

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Jim K
January 24, 2014, 06:13 PM
There is NO hammer block or transfer bar. Maybe I am going blind, but those markings look like .32 caliber, not .22 caliber. If so, the gun is chambered for .32 S&W or maybe .32 S&W Long, a centerfire cartridge that is much more expensive to fire than the common .22 Long rifle.

Jim

chicharrones
January 24, 2014, 06:23 PM
There is NO hammer block or transfer bar. Maybe I am going blind, but those markings look like .32 caliber, not .22 caliber. If so, the gun is chambered for .32 S&W or maybe .32 S&W Long, a centerfire cartridge that is much more expensive to fire than the common .22 Long rifle.

Jim

Yeah, when I first look I see 32. Then I blink a bunch and see 22. Even with the photo zoomed in, it's playing tricks with my eyes. :)

Vern Humphrey
January 24, 2014, 08:21 PM
The cyclender spins freely until hammer is back, this normal for these old guns correct? Not a broken piece in the gun?
No, it is not normal. A revolver cylinder must be under control throughout the firing cycle. Otherwise bad things can happen, like the gun throwing by (the chamber you want passing alignment with the breech) or failure to carry up (not reaching the proper alignment for firing.)

I suspect you have a broken cylinder stop spring, but there could also be a problem with the hand.

rcmodel
January 24, 2014, 08:44 PM
i believe the free spin cylinder is normal on that model.

It should only lock in place when the hammer is cocked and the trigger is pulled.

rc

Jim Watson
January 24, 2014, 09:05 PM
Is the firing pin on the hammer?
Then it should have an empty under the hammer.

I don't think the minor makes used the hammer blocks that Colt and S&W did, they either had transfer bars or maybe a simple rebound.

BCRider
January 24, 2014, 09:38 PM
I've got one and the cylinder is not supposed to free spin. The stop comes up when the hammer is down or when cocked and only retracts momentarily during the hammer coming back. The only spin you should have is until the stop drops into one of the notches.

I'm not sure which of us has the newer or older model but mine is the H&R Sportsman with the flat sloped upper portion of the barrel instead of the grooved side rail your barrel has. I suspect mine is the newer version since it takes more to make the barrel in the shape of yours.

rcmodel
January 24, 2014, 10:35 PM
Yes, your Sportsman is a much newer & improved model with a conventional cylinder locking arrangement.

His is much older, and uses a different method of locking.

rc

gibson_es
January 24, 2014, 11:01 PM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y9o6k7dlwqc&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Here is a short video showing the hammer. It seems to have a safety catch/ half cock.

Either, leaving it in the half cock is safe because it can't move forward

Or, leaving it all the way down is safe because if it jumps back enough to get the force needed to set of theprimer, it will be far enough back to be in half cock

Or ... both theories are wrong. Lol.

What say you? I show cylinder as well.


Also, it is 22 lr. But it really does look like 32 in the photo... odd.

But then it would read 32 long rifle.... soo.... yea... lol

Kernel
January 25, 2014, 12:31 AM
I think at $150 you did okay. The wear looks honest and I don't see signs of abuse or neglect. Anything that revolves, is made mostly of steel, and shoots .22 LR seems to be going up.

rcmodel
January 25, 2014, 12:53 AM
Well, I watched your vid, and I must say, I am appalled!

If it isn't broke?
It soon will be with all the slip-hammer drops against the sear, and dry firing.

The gun is older then both of us put together.
Cut it some slack!!!!!

Almost everything you did in the vid is doing damage to the lockwork!

rc

BCRider
January 25, 2014, 01:10 AM
I wouldn't put it quite so strongly but yeah, rc is right. Don't do that sort of stuff to a rimfire gun.

The only time the hammer should fall is when there's are at least 1/4 plastic wall anchors in the chambers. And even then they need to be checked and rotated as the rims get beaten up. Or use empty brass casings in a similar way to pad the hammer.

When cocked and ready to fire in single action the cylinder should be locked up more than what you showed. I'd check that again. Similarly if you double action the trigger, using your thumb to ease the hammer down this time, and hold the trigger back again the cylinder should still be locked up at the end of the hammer fall.

A couple of degrees of play is OK. But on a roughly 1.5" cylinder a couple of degrees either way is only .05" of total play at the outside of the cylinder. If it's more than that then something inside isn't working right. To me your video made it look like the hand wasn't holding the cylinder against the stop. Clearly the hand is working as the cylinder advances. But it just didn't look like it had any sort of proper lockup.

788Ham
January 25, 2014, 01:43 PM
Ive got one similar to the OP's, .22 Sportsman. Only mine is older, octagon barrel. The cylinder on mine spins freely, aids in unloading cylinder and reloading, cylinder must be removed to do either sequence. The cylinder does stay locked during firing, no need to pull hammer back into a second notch to load. I got this from my Pop many years ago, not shot anymore though, have others to shoot now.

Kernel
January 25, 2014, 02:01 PM
unloading cylinder and reloading, cylinder must be removed

:confused::confused::confused::confused:

It's a top-break revolver. Ejection is automatic on opening. Why would you have to remove the cylinder to load and unload it?

BCRider
January 25, 2014, 03:22 PM
I think Ham's gun is one of the similar period solid frame H&R's which either loaded through a small notch in the recoil shield or which were more easily loaded by removing the cylinder. And the small notch load option might have been a later feature as well.

Ham, does your cylinder have the very open'ish style stop notches like seen in the OP's pictures? I'm sort of thinking that this style of stop notch is related to the free spin action.

On my later top break where the stop only retracts for a portion of the cycle the stop notches are all very much like new Ruger or S&W style notches with a slot bordered by a half depth cutaway.

Jim K
January 25, 2014, 10:36 PM
Those .22's were basically variations of the old breaktops and solid frame guns made in .32 S&W and .38 S&W for personal protection. They were made to be carried with the hammer on half cock or down on a fired round. In normal use, the gun was fired, the firing pin in the primer (or in the indent in the case for a rimfire) kept the cylinder from moving while the trigger engaged the hammer again for the next shot. That is why the cylinder stop on the trigger was considered adequate. With a breaktop, the gun can be opened with the hammer in the down position because the cylinder is moving away from the firing pin. To remove the cylinder in the sold frame guns, the hammer has to be put on half cock.

When swing cylinder DA revolvers were developed, the designers wanted to eliminate the need for the hammer to be cocked manually in order to open the cylinder, so they invented the rebounding hammer, which is moved backward and off the cartridge by a mechanical device activated when the trigger is released.

Jim

788Ham
January 25, 2014, 11:30 PM
BCRider,
Yes it does. On the front of the frame, just ahead and under the cylinder, is a half circle lever, that when pushed inward allows the rod holding the cylinder in place to be pulled out, thus releasing the cylinder out of the frame. It has the same style grips, only more worn, not smooth, but close.

goon
January 25, 2014, 11:47 PM
It's definitely a .22 LR. I can see it clearly in the pics but also, count the chambers. AFAIK, H&R never made a 9 shot .32 caliber.

0007
January 26, 2014, 06:42 AM
When you get around to shooting this old revolver, I think you will be pleasently suprised at the inheirant accuracy it is capable of. I have had several versions of the H&R line, old and newer, and all of them could shoot better than I could, heh, heh.

Tacoma
January 26, 2014, 04:44 PM
Looks like a early model/ predecessor to the model 999 sportsman. I've had several of those ( and other H&R's as well). Sights and trigger are weak points. Lead shaving from timing issues were fairly common on the old H&R's as well. Still, if you get a good one, it's a keeper.
As I recall, the cyl should only spin on 1/2 cock. Not with the hammer down.
BTWL Egunparts has parts but they are often not factory. Best of luck with your new find.

gibson_es
January 27, 2014, 06:03 PM
Thanks so far guys. I have been gone for the weekend to a bluegrass festival. I was checking in but didn't have much time.

OcelotZ3
January 28, 2014, 01:06 AM
I have one, SN 571xxx, and the cylinder never spins freely.

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