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  1. #1
    Member Enslaved87's Avatar
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    New score... Argentine rolling block

    Hey guys, nothing crazy special about this but I thought it was neat enough to share. M1879 Argentineicon rolling block in pretty nice shape and chambered in .43 Spanish.



    I have one question from a safety standpoint if anybody knows: with the hammer down, the breech block moves fore and aft a bit (maybe .020"??). If you push the hammer forward, it all locks up tight. Do you guys think this will be a safety issue if I decide to shoot it? I suspect it won't as the overall condition of this thing is rather nice. That said, I figured somebody on here might know a tolerance? Thanks!
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    Last edited by Enslaved87; 12-31-2016 at 05:05 PM.

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    Really Senior Member jamie5070's Avatar
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    I am not an expert, but mine have a little play like you describe and I have never had any problems shooting them. Mine are both 50-70s.

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    Member TheRollingBlock's Avatar
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    If you think it is an issue then get it checked out for piece of mind, I personally wouldn't worry about it because when the hammer falls the action locks up tight. The rolling block action is much stronger than people give it credit for.

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    Advisory Panel Patrick Chadwick's Avatar
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    Before you do anything else, check the following:

    1) When the hammer has dropped, the block may be able to move back a little way. Obviously there must be some tolerance in order for the mechanism to function without jamming, but check that the face of the block, when fully pushed back (brass rod down the barrel, for instance) is at right angles to the barrel axis. If this is not so, then the case will have a skewed base after firing. And, of course, your rather expensive cases are not going to last long when reloaded! This is an indication that the mechanism is severely worn OR the block/barrel is mismatched because one or the other is a replacement.

    2) Is it really in .43 Spanish? Many old rollers were rejigged to "Spanish Reformado" when they became seriously worn. Even if it seems OK, I would still recommend that the very first shot is made with a case set up for fireforming, i.e. light powder charge and waxed + rolled paper plug instead of a hard bullet, so you can measure the case afterwards to see what the chambering is NOW, rather than what it was once upon a time. And, of course, it is now easy to check that the base remains at right angles to the body. Just stand it on end, and if you can see a tilt you have a problem.

    3) And whatever anyone says, please do not use nitro powder in old BP mechanisms. The rate of onset with nitro is normally greater than with BP, even if you think you are using a "cat's sneeze" charge, and therefore creates more of a hammer blow on the block pin than BP. Hammering causes more wear than simple pressure.

    ---------- Post added at 11:25 PM ---------- Previous post was at 11:18 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Enslaved87 View Post
    I have one question from a safety standpoint if anybody knows: with the hammer down, the breech block moves fore and aft a bit (maybe .020"??). If you push the hammer forward, it all locks up tight.
    I noticed this on "The Mahdi" (search the forum and ye shall find) and after puzzling for some time, realized that the curve on the front of the hammer section that slides under the block and locks it was actually slightly eccentric, so that it really locks up pretty close. Not tight, as that would cause a jam. And surely a deliberate design feature.
    Last edited by Patrick Chadwick; 01-01-2017 at 05:28 PM.

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    Member Enslaved87's Avatar
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    Thanks Patrick.

    The best I can tell, the breech block is in fact ~90 degrees to the barrel when pulled back, although I would have to do some creative measuring to be 100% certain. I have a couple other rolling blocks and they are extremely tight when the hammer is down--virtually no movement. This one just caught me off guard because the overall condition is so nice (parts seem to fit well, bluing is uniform, etc).

    I did a chamber casting just to be sure and it measured out to be .43 Spanish dimensions. I also happen to have another 43 spanish RRB and have some ammo laying around. The spent casings fit like a glove in this carbine. I bought a few boxes of loaded cartridges from Buffalo arms and didn't realize until after they got here that they were loaded with smokeless. I am working on getting the goods to start casting boolits and reloading this stuff with some swiss black. I added a couple more pics mainly for entertainment purposes-- it cracks me up how short these carbines are. Thanks again.
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    Last edited by Enslaved87; 01-01-2017 at 07:40 PM.

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    Member Enslaved87's Avatar
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    Edit: I just read through your `Mahdi' post. What a great read it was! The guy i purchased that old `anschutz' percussion gun (earlier post you were helping me with) from has had one of those Egyptian rolling blocks he's offered up to me several times. It was battered by sand much like yours and I didn't take it home mostly for that reason -- I think it was in 7mm Mauser not .43 Egyptian. With that said, the more I think about it the more it makes sense that most of them probably ended up that way if they were used. You inspired me and now I have to go buy another gun.

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    Really Senior Member Mr E's Avatar
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    I was told long ago that reformado was Spanish for FTR
    1ATSR 177AD & 4/3 RNSWR

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