Author Topic: Personal airgun smithing.  (Read 3615 times)

Offline hickory n Steel

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Personal airgun smithing.
« on: April 08, 2020, 09:48:57 PM »
I've been doing  personal airgun work for about 6 years now and while the quality of tools I use has gotten better , the types of tools I use has stayed the same over the 31 or so airguns I currently own.

This has been all I've really needed aside from the specialty tool required for opening the soldered in valves (it's a cartridge valve with one half soldered into the compression tube ) on original pre '92 Benjamin and Sheridan airguns.
I borrowed one when I last needed,  and just have not purchased my own yet.
My area of airgun interest is mostly just multi stroke pneumatics with a few Co2 guns, and I'm an iron sight kind of guy with only one scope I occasionally use.
There's really not much more you need to reseal a multi stroke pneumatic airgun, just the ability to not bugger up any roll pins or screws and of course the rebuild kit.
Same goes for co2, in fact vintage American co2 rifles and single shot pistols are even easier to work on.
Modifying them is a different story.
There's really not a lot of difference in the tools one would use on firearms, there are just a lot less specialty tools needed and you don't use any kind of solvents and such in basic cleaning.
Really bore cleaning tools aren't even generally used.


I've got a few tools on the way, but generally this really is about all I need.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2020, 09:53:12 PM by hickory n Steel »
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Offline bmwrd0

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2020, 02:18:44 PM »
Replacing the main seal on a Benjamin like you show takes a special tool. It is square edged like a socket drive and this is a very fidley job on the older models (pre-serial number).

That is something you won't find by chance.

Here is one:https://www.bakerairguns.com/product/valve-tool-for-benjamin-sheridan/

Offline hickory n Steel

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2020, 03:50:31 PM »
Replacing the main seal on a Benjamin like you show takes a special tool. It is square edged like a socket drive and this is a very fidley job on the older models (pre-serial number).

That is something you won't find by chance.

Here is one:https://www.bakerairguns.com/product/valve-tool-for-benjamin-sheridan/
Yes the valve puller for these is available inexpensively from pyrmidair ( best price around ), lots of other places to buy them too but I just have not needed one in a while.
Removing the retaining nut is easy enough to do with a ground square socket, but it's the threaded valve puller that one needs to buy so it's easier to just buy the too for under $20 which handle both functions.

It can be bit tricky to get everything in without cross threading the retaining nut, but its not too hard if you've done it before.
You can compress the main spring a bit to make it easier, but then you'll have to cock the gun before you can pump it.

That valve tool is really the only specialty tool needed.
For crosmans like the 140 and other earlier models removing the piston head to replace  the pump cup can be tricky, but a cut and shaped washer makes easy work of kt

There are really no other non standard tools I have needed, I'm sure some things my he different if one was working on vintage pumpers from southeast Asia or for earlier Crosman rifles such as the 101. Never been into anything foreign or older than the 1965.

« Last Edit: April 09, 2020, 03:52:57 PM by hickory n Steel »
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Offline hickory n Steel

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2020, 04:22:48 PM »
I've been getting by with regular punches for too long, Roll pin punches really are a must.

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Offline daves_not_here

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2020, 04:35:33 PM »
Is an old "BENJAMIN FRANKLIN" Model 312 worth restoring?
David

Offline hickory n Steel

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2020, 02:42:37 AM »
Is an old "BENJAMIN FRANKLIN" Model 312 worth restoring?
It sure as hell is, those old " tootsie roll " Benjamin's are real sweetheart of a little rifle.
I'd look into determining the age of it first though as they made 'em from I believe the 30's till the early 70's when they updated the safety and the model numbers went from 310 312 and 317 to 340 342 and 347.
A reseal is always a good thing if it needs it, but like anything  " restoration " can hurt value.

That bare brass polished out '67 312 on the bench there is one sweet little shooter ( a gift from a friend who acquired it in rough condition and refinished + polished it out as an experiment) it came to me with original seals which have finally given out though and I haven't gotten around to resealing it.

If it's just not compressing you can give it some nd 10w30, let it sit upright in a corner for a few days till you get compression then give it a thorough flushing with rubbing alcohol and repeat the oiling process.
This could potentially give you another few years of use out of it before it needs a teardown and reseal.
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Offline ken w.

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2020, 01:30:02 PM »
I came across a bag full of Benjamin Franklin parts the other day cleaning out. Not sure of the model.

Offline hickory n Steel

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2020, 05:02:22 PM »
I came across a bag full of Benjamin Franklin parts the other day cleaning out. Not sure of the model.
A whole gun in parts or just a bunch of parts ?
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Offline Conductor562

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2020, 10:05:57 PM »
Iíve got a Benjamin Franklin Model 310 that belonged to my grandfather. Donít know anything about it but it worked up until about 5 years ago when it quit building pressure. I would love to get it working again, but know nothing about them or where to source parts.

Offline hickory n Steel

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2020, 01:57:37 PM »
Iíve got a Benjamin Franklin Model 310 that belonged to my grandfather. Donít know anything about it but it worked up until about 5 years ago when it quit building pressure. I would love to get it working again, but know nothing about them or where to source parts.
That bb gun would be a 1962 manufactured rifle based on the serial number.

You can get the parts from here
https://www.bakerairguns.com/
I personally like the mac1 airguns kits the best because he includes a bottle of his secret sauce airgun oil,  but he does not sell the valve tool while Baker does.

You'll get a little tube of crosman pellgun oil with it, but dont use it.
The stuff can gum up over time.

Before you tear into the gun try reviving the seals.

Let it stand upright in the corner for a few days with some nd10w30 periodically trying to pump it, you just may get some compression out of it.

Btw I see you're missing the safety, but I urge you not to bother replacing it.
When you use this safety it simply catches the hammer which can damage the edge that the sear catches and make an unsafe gun.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2020, 02:05:20 PM by hickory n Steel »
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Offline daves_not_here

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2020, 11:43:28 PM »
Is an old "BENJAMIN FRANKLIN" Model 312 worth restoring?
It sure as hell is, those old " tootsie roll " Benjamin's are real sweetheart of a little rifle.
I'd look into determining the age of it first though as they made 'em from I believe the 30's till the early 70's when they updated the safety and the model numbers went from 310 312 and 317 to 340 342 and 347.
A reseal is always a good thing if it needs it, but like anything  " restoration " can hurt value.

That bare brass polished out '67 312 on the bench there is one sweet little shooter ( a gift from a friend who acquired it in rough condition and refinished + polished it out as an experiment) it came to me with original seals which have finally given out though and I haven't gotten around to resealing it.

If it's just not compressing you can give it some nd 10w30, let it sit upright in a corner for a few days till you get compression then give it a thorough flushing with rubbing alcohol and repeat the oiling process.
This could potentially give you another few years of use out of it before it needs a teardown and reseal.

Thanks! 

The s/n is H17461. That didn't jibe with any of the s/n blocks on the site I looked at. What's the best site for these?

I'm not sure what's wrong with it. I seem to remember LONG ago it had no compression when pumping, but now it is REALLY hard to pump the return stroke.

Apparently, the barrel was painted black originally? I think I'll polish it since most of the paint is gone.
David

Offline hickory n Steel

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2020, 01:01:51 AM »
Is an old "BENJAMIN FRANKLIN" Model 312 worth restoring?
It sure as hell is, those old " tootsie roll " Benjamin's are real sweetheart of a little rifle.
I'd look into determining the age of it first though as they made 'em from I believe the 30's till the early 70's when they updated the safety and the model numbers went from 310 312 and 317 to 340 342 and 347.
A reseal is always a good thing if it needs it, but like anything  " restoration " can hurt value.

That bare brass polished out '67 312 on the bench there is one sweet little shooter ( a gift from a friend who acquired it in rough condition and refinished + polished it out as an experiment) it came to me with original seals which have finally given out though and I haven't gotten around to resealing it.

If it's just not compressing you can give it some nd 10w30, let it sit upright in a corner for a few days till you get compression then give it a thorough flushing with rubbing alcohol and repeat the oiling process.
This could potentially give you another few years of use out of it before it needs a teardown and reseal.

Thanks! 

The s/n is H17461. That didn't jibe with any of the s/n blocks on the site I looked at. What's the best site for these?

I'm not sure what's wrong with it. I seem to remember LONG ago it had no compression when pumping, but now it is REALLY hard to pump the return stroke.

Apparently, the barrel was painted black originally? I think I'll polish it since most of the paint is gone.
The H170,000 serial number block came in 1961.
For serial numbers of crosman, Benjamin,  nd Sheridan airguns I use the Crosman site.
Usually I just Google " Benjamin airgun dates "...ect and it's the first result.

Originally they used some kind sort of black finish on the brass ( not sure what they used but I know Sheridans used an electrolus black nickel plating ) and I have not heard of anything aside from maybe ceracoat that's as durable s the original finish.
I do not generally like the polished brass look ( that polished out 312 I was gifted is an exception ) but if you can't replicate the black with anything durable enough then why not.

I think your gun is likely gummed up, try standing it upright in a corner for a few days with some high proof rubbing alcohol and do your best to flush it out.
You may be able to then oil it an revive the seals, but most likely you'll need to reseal it.
It's an easy fun afternoon project if you decide to do it yourself.
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Offline daves_not_here

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2020, 12:50:53 AM »
Thanks - I appreciate the advice. Built the year of my birth.

I'll give your fix a try when I get around to it. I only have 1,001 projects calling my name around here.  ::)
David

Offline hickory n Steel

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2021, 12:08:43 AM »
Just to clarify, they were the Benjamin air rifle company.
" Benjamin Franklin " was a tagline or slogan if you will, found on a lot of their guns but you'll see the company info located on the rear tube plug.






These two gems found their way to me a few days ago,  the top is a late 30's Benjamin model 117 and the bottom a late 40's or so Benjamin model 132.
All I really know is that while it's on the early side it also has an original " rubber seal " ( I don't remember the exact material but leather seals were used before)

After going all through them very thoroughly I have called the TOD at 5:00pm this evening.
The model 177 will fire and holds air overnight,  but it's struggling.
The 132 does not work and seems to need it's lever / linkage replaced.

I have ordered everything I need.


« Last Edit: April 30, 2021, 12:13:00 AM by hickory n Steel »
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Offline hickory n Steel

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Re: Personal airgun smithing.
« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2021, 10:01:45 PM »
Today I resealed the model 132 and made a holster for it.

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