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WTK: Repair Trigger Guard Issues

This is a discussion on WTK: Repair Trigger Guard Issues within the Gunsmithing forums, part of the M14 M1A Forum category; I have a Smith 14 built as a 1000 yard rifle by Clint Fowler. I sent Clint my Smith receiver and all new GI parts ...


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Old September 30th, 2016, 06:33 AM   #1
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WTK: Repair Trigger Guard Issues

I have a Smith 14 built as a 1000 yard rifle by Clint Fowler. I sent Clint my Smith receiver and all new GI parts in the wrap from Springfield except for the bolt (new TRW), barrel (Krieger Heavy Stainless), and the stock (McMillan).

Clint built this M14, glass bedded the action, and lugged the receiver.

My issue is the trigger guard keeps popping open after several shots. Several months ago I got in touch with Clint on the phone. He suggested that I slightly and gently hammer the metal tip on the trigger guard that locks the trigger assembly into the receiver. I went out and bought a small hammer with a hard plastic head for this task.

I am having second thoughts now about doing the hammering. Do you think I should just replace the trigger guard with one that is new in the wrap?

Your Advice and Suggestions will Greatly Be Appreciated!

Dane




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Old September 30th, 2016, 07:22 AM   #2
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Can you take a picture of the tab on the trigger guard? I'm wonder what the angle looks like that you would have to bend it back. If he built your rifle and you trust him; I'd use a brass hammer and tap away until she's back to normal. Mine are SA and lock pretty tight. I have to use a lot of force to the rear of the trigger guard to get that tab to release.

Russ

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Old September 30th, 2016, 07:51 AM   #3
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Is it just that the tab unlatches, or does the triggerguard also swing open?

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Old September 30th, 2016, 09:17 AM   #4
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pickup a spare trigger guard

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Old September 30th, 2016, 09:31 AM   #5
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I believe that trigger guards may be made from "spring" steel and it will take a lot more than that plastic tip hammer to bend it if you go that route.

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Old September 30th, 2016, 10:33 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drminpa View Post
I have a Smith 14 built as a 1000 yard rifle by Clint Fowler. I sent Clint my Smith receiver and all new GI parts in the wrap from Springfield except for the bolt (new TRW), barrel (Krieger Heavy Stainless), and the stock (McMillan).

Clint built this M14, glass bedded the action, and lugged the receiver.

My issue is the trigger guard keeps popping open after several shots. Several months ago I got in touch with Clint on the phone. He suggested that I slightly and gently hammer the metal tip on the trigger guard that locks the trigger assembly into the receiver. I went out and bought a small hammer with a hard plastic head for this task.

I am having second thoughts now about doing the hammering. Do you think I should just replace the trigger guard with one that is new in the wrap?

Your Advice and Suggestions will Greatly Be Appreciated!

Dane
Send it back, I do not think this is acceptable to happen on a new build done by a pro. No bodys perfect but the builder should address this issue. Also have him pay for the shipping.
This is my opinion.

Good Luck

Thanks from hytekrednek, racer and Rich D
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Old September 30th, 2016, 10:47 AM   #7
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I'd give it a couple of taps with a nylon faced punch hammer to see if the trigger guard lock into place. If not then do some inspecting and sanding in the trigger assy inletting. You may have some imperfections causing the guard not to lock fully. I had to that with my new/used M14 walnut stock.

Another tip: Cycle the bolt, remove the trigger group and reinstall and then try locking the guard.

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Old September 30th, 2016, 01:22 PM   #8
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The tab on the end of the trigger guard should be bent at enough angle that it mechanically 'hooks' into the square notch at the end of the base plate. And the angled tab should go fully into the notch without being obstructed by any stock or bedding material.

Jay Kosta
Endwell NY USA

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Old September 30th, 2016, 03:22 PM   #9
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If the tab at the end of the trigger guard is already bent enough, just squeeze the trigger guard with enough force to get some inelastic deflection so it locks in with more force.

This is why I cringe every time I see someone pry a trigger guard open with a tool. They probably bend the guard a little each time until something like this happens. I've never used anything but my fingers to unlatch the trigger guard and mine still locks in as tight as it did 19 years ago.

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Old October 3rd, 2016, 08:33 AM   #10
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Thank You for all of the replies with suggestions. I will try to get some pictures posted of the trigger guard and the area in the stock that the trigger guard sits in. When I spoke to Clint I suggest that there maybe too much glass under the trigger guard causing it to not properly lock up. He told me no then he went into some stories about this being a common problem with the Garand/M14 trigger Guard lockup system.

Some of you may not like my following statement but I had this built back in 1989/90 by Clint. After shooting two magazines from it the trigger guard started popping open after 2 or 3 shots. The last time it popped opened it torn a deep hole in my hand. I should of gotten stitches but I just wrapped up my hand and let it heel. I was so mad I put this rifle in my safe and never fired it again.

I have been shooting my M1A and now my kids want to shoot the Smith M14 at our 700 yard range in New Holland Pa. So do I so thats why I am asking for help.

I will post pictures as soon as I can get them taken.

Thank You All for the assistance!

Dane

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Old October 4th, 2016, 06:05 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drminpa View Post
Thank You for all of the replies with suggestions. I will try to get some pictures posted of the trigger guard and the area in the stock that the trigger guard sits in. When I spoke to Clint I suggest that there maybe too much glass under the trigger guard causing it to not properly lock up. He told me no then he went into some stories about this being a common problem with the Garand/M14 trigger Guard lockup system.

Some of you may not like my following statement but I had this built back in 1989/90 by Clint. After shooting two magazines from it the trigger guard started popping open after 2 or 3 shots. The last time it popped opened it torn a deep hole in my hand. I should of gotten stitches but I just wrapped up my hand and let it heel. I was so mad I put this rifle in my safe and never fired it again.

I have been shooting my M1A and now my kids want to shoot the Smith M14 at our 700 yard range in New Holland Pa. So do I so thats why I am asking for help.

I will post pictures as soon as I can get them taken.

Thank You All for the assistance!

Dane
I wouldn't shoot the Smith if it's going to bite and cause damage. Take it apart and inspect. I think Clint was trying to blow you off and not rectifying the problem if your statement is true. Usually the opposite is true where it's hard to release the trigger assy lock up because of a tight fit or engage it. If a soldier acquired a faulty locking trigger guard it would have been returned to the armorer for retrofit.

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Old October 4th, 2016, 07:30 PM   #12
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New trigger guard has same problem

I took my brand new standard M1A w/ syn stock to the range today for the first time. I had the exact same problem. Maybe 30 - 50% of the shots popped the trigger guard open. Maybe 5 +/- times, the whole trigger assembly dropped out of the stock. But aside from that, it shot like a dream. I will take a close look at it tomorrow, but I am thinking of sending it back to SA. I bought it from a local gun shop near Sacramento, CA. Maybe that's the problem. It knows it's in Kalifornia.

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Old October 4th, 2016, 09:51 PM   #13
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If the triggerguard lock-up is firm for the last 1/4 to 3/8" of travel, then it could be the hook. Yes, it is somewhat common, but not often, in Garands to give the TG a little "bend" to get the hook to engage. Considering Clint Fowler built it 25 years ago, I can see him saying to try the easy fix first.

On newer M1A's, I think they are cast steel? I thought I saw some posts a couple years back on issues with the TG. May not take the bending-potential cracking? Hopefully someone has "correct" knowledge, not edumacated guesses.

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Old October 5th, 2016, 05:00 AM   #14
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Just for the heck of it why don`t you buy a new trigger guard bow and swap it out with the one you are having problems with? You can get a new SAI commercial version very reasonably priced.

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Old October 5th, 2016, 05:19 AM   #15
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Fulton lists a trigger guard with a milled latch. I have used a few of these in stubborn applications.


Trigger Guard with Hand-Milled Latch
Part #: FA-M-139
Price: $44.95

Semper Fi
ArtB

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