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Re: 1873 cleaning rod

Posted by Dick Hosmer on Wednesday, 23 February 2011, at 4:28 p.m., in response to 1873 cleaning rod, posted by wdsmith on Wednesday, 23 February 2011, at 3:36 p.m.

Assuming you have an original stock, there is NO good reason for it to be plugged (or not drilled) in such a manner. That would have been caught at final inspection. They DO get packed full of dirt, but that usually is only in the bottom 1/2" or so. At that serial number there will be a cleanout hole concealed by the trigger-guard plate. Remove it, and see what you find. Perhaps some "joker" stuck a dowel in the cleaning rod hole? Hope they didn't glue it!

If it is a loose dowel, you can possibly extract it by using a very long wood screw, or have a machinist cut some threads on a steel rod. If it IS glued in, you will have no choice but to give up, or cut a slot down through the bottom of the barrel channel. That will hurt the value, but at least it will be invisible and can be repaired with a patch.

If it is (as I suspect) a broken-off cleaning rod, then you might be able to shake it out, or drive it out by inertia. Try rapping the muzzle SMARTLY on a padded but hard surface (like the floor) and see if the obstruction comes forward. If it does, it will probably come out to where it can be grabbed.

You have a potentially serious issue (first case I've ever heard of) and I do not envy you. I don't believe that the Dixie (repro) rod is in any way at fault, but, IMHO, repro rods are a VERY VERY poor choice, especially for the common models. Most of them can be spotted a mile away, and they are not that much less than an original.


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