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Old April 13, 2015, 06:22 PM   #1
weblance
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Join Date: September 15, 2011
Posts: 626
Charter Arms Spurless Hammer (DAO) Install

I recently bought a Charter Arms 44 Special Bulldog, and a Charter Arms 38 Special Police Undercover. Both of these revolvers came with spurred hammers. They were Single Action/Double Action. I have made the 44 Bulldog my Every Day Carry. The 38 Undercover is my wifes bedroom gun. I wanted both these revolvers to be Double Action Only, hers' for safety reasons, and mine, for a snag free draw. Charter Arms offers spurless, Double Action Only hammers for their revolvers, and claim on their websight that its a simple process to swap the hammers. I ordered 2 of the DAO hammers from Charter Arms, and they came today. I want to comment on the process to change hammers, because I couldn't find any info on the swap, and maybe it will help someone in the future.

Charter Arms revolvers come in 2 frame sizes, similar to the S&W K and L frames. They are very similar, except one is slightly taller than the other, to accommodate a larger cylinder. The 22, 32, and 5 shot 38s come on the small frame, the 6 shot 38, 9mm 40 S&W, and 44 Special revolvers come on the large frame. There are 2 different DAO hammers. Make sure you order the one that is correct for your frame size. Charter Arms makes it kind of confusing when you order from the websight, as they list 3 different hammers, and 2 different colors. They list the hammers as 38, 357, and 44. I ordered 2 hammers for the 44, even though one was going into my 6 shot 38. When they came today, my guess was correct, the 44 hammer is correct for the 6 shot 38. Im not sure which frame size the few 357 revolvers they offer are built on, but I would guess the large frame, and that would take the 44 hammer. I doubt they really have 3 different hammers, but I would call them and ask, if you are ordering for a 357

Starting with an UNLOADED revolver, the install is a simple 2-3 minute process. Remove the grip. Remove the mainspring and mainspring rod assembly. To do this, bend a paperclip so you have a straight pin. Lightly pull the trigger, or hammer spur, about half way, and keeping either held back under tension, look at the bottom of the mainspring guide rod. You will see a small hole, as the spring compresses, and the guide rod moves down. If the hole in the guide rod isnt facing you, simply insert the paperclip into the hole, and turn the guide rod until the hole faces you. Put the end of the paperclip into the hole in the guide rod, and slowly release the tension on the trigger, or hammer spur. The paperclip will stop the spring from going into the fully relaxed position as you release the tension, and this allows the mainspring, and guide rod assembly to then be removed from the revolver frame.

To remove the hammer, take a screwdriver that fits the hammer pivot screw correctly, and unscrew and remove the hammer pivot screw from the frame. The hammer pivot screw, is the screw that is directly below the cylinder release latch, on the left side of the frame. With the hammer pivot screw removed, remove the spurred hammer from the frame. It might take a bit of wiggling, but the hammer is free at this point to simply be pulled out easily.

Installing the spurless hammer is the reverse of the removal. Drop the hammer into the frame, and looking into the pivot screw hole in the frame, when the hole in the hammer lines up, install the pivot screw. The hammer isnt under any tension, so its easy to align the hole in the hammer with the hole in the frame. If the hammer drops too low, reach up inside the frame, under the hammer, with a pen or other small, long item, and push the hammer into place. With the hammer pivot screw installed, re-install the mainspring, and guide rod assembly. There are 2 things to point out when installing the mainspring guide rod assembly. Pull the paperclip out of the guide rod, to the point that it is flush with the far side of the guide rod, so that its not sticking out. This makes it much easier when installing the assembly back into the frame. DONT pull the paper clip completely out, because the spring and spring retainer will launch to somewhere where you wont find it, and if you do find it, its hard to compress and re-install on the guide rod. Secondly, there is a "ball" made into the top of the guide rod. There is a "ball socket" machined into the bottom of the hammer. These two areas must meet when the assembly is re-installed. Holding the paperclip and guide rod/spring assembly, position the "ball" at the top of the guide rod into the socket on the bottom of the hammer, and as you pull the trigger, make sure the spring retainer moves into its machined recess in the grip frame. Continue to pull the trigger, putting more tension on the guide rod assembly, and as the guide rod moves down, and the tension comes off the paperclip, remove it. Push the mainspring retainer completely into its spot in the frame, if it isnt already there. Install the grip, and with an UNLOADED revolver, and pointed in a safe direction, check for function. Its really that simple, and makes the revolver into a Double Acton Only revolver, that draws without the danger of snagging the hammer spur.

Charter Arms sells a version of the 44 Bulldog, with a spurless hammer, but I ordered the spurred version, so that I could shoot it in Single Action mode at the range. That way I can check its accuracy, and find a load that shoots to point of aim. Once that's done, the spurless hammer goes back in for carry. The 6 shot 38 Police Undercover is only available with a spurred hammer.

HERE is a link to the DAO hammer at Charter Arms webight, for anyone looking for the spurless hammer.

2 shots of these revolvers with their new, Double Action Only spurless hammers.




Last edited by weblance; April 13, 2015 at 07:01 PM.
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