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Thread: Getting The Most Out Of Your Baikal O/U Shotgun - Part 3

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    Senior Moderator 12GAUGE's Avatar
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    Getting The Most Out Of Your Baikal O/U Shotgun - Part 3

    AoA Everybody

    "Installing Extended Firing Pins to Improve Reliability of Baikal IZH-27EM-1C (MP-27EM-1C) O/U Shotgun"

    Besides being known for their less than impressive looks, Baikal Shotguns have always enjoyed a long standing reputation of a durable and reliable poor manís B-Gun. Think of them as more of a tool and less of an art work. Same can be said about Baikalís IZH-27EM-1C (MP-27EM-1C) Over and Under Shotgun. Tough as hell shotgun that never misses a beat except it fell of the ugly tree.

    However there is more than meets the eye. For hunting and casual sports/skeet, Baikal IZH-27EM-1C (MP-27EM-1C) offers more than sufficient reliability for a budget oriented gun intended for hard field use. However sports/skeet shooting is a different ball game altogether where a bird lost due to a misfire caused by a light primer strike can not only cost you a game but can seriously hurt your confidence in your firearm. This is where Baikals have been known to make some owners unhappy about the choice of their equipment.

    Few Baikal owners at my skeet club have also experienced of an odd and totally unpredictable light primer strike from the lower barrels of their Baikal IZH-27EM-1C (MP-27EM-1C) O/U shotguns. The occurrence though very rare usually happens at an extremely critical moment when everything else seems to be perfect. I am sure you can understand the frustration experienced by the shooter at that particular point in time. It adds insult to injury when a shooter starts missing not only due to lack of talent or technique but also owing to firearm malfunction.

    Same thing happened to me as well on more than one occasion and I simply chose to ignore it. Its not like I am aiming for the Olympics or anything so had nothing to lose. However I started noticing a pattern emerging when more than a few Baikal owners started talking about it over tea after retiring for the day from skeet. Almost all of them had similar complaints. Some were blaming diminishing quality control of Baikal firearms whereas others were of the view that the hammers spring are not strong enough to ensure consistent and strong primer strikes.

    I came back home and started doing a little research on this issue. Found out that Baikal IZH-27EM-1C (MP-27EM-1C) shotgun is loosely based on Browning Superposed Shotgun which was designed by John Moses Browning to be the first affordable (by the average working man if he was willing to save for it) O/U shotgun. Like most Browning designs, Superposed shotguns are very durable and reliable but they are also known for a few light primer strikes here and there.

    As the rabbit hole got deeper, I learned that in order to keep the commonality of parts (Hammers, Hammer Springs and Spring Guide Rods etc.) Mr. Browning employed a setup of firing pin that places the lower barrelís firing pin at an awkward angle which results in these occasional light primer strikes.

    As they say, every problem has a solution. This too has been solved by using a number of modifications. The most recommended modification is an extended firing pin that ensures strong and reliable strike on the primer. I thought why not apply the same to Baikal and see if the problem can be cured. The most important thing here is the knowledge of the material (to make the firing pin out of) and the heat treatment involved to get maximum service life out of that firing pin.

    Instead of using conventional grade of steels in making the firing pin, I decided to go for Tool Steel. My choices were simple:

    1. O-1 Tool Steel
    2. S-7 Tool Steel
    3. D-3 Tool Steel

    I decided to go with O-1 Tool Steel due to the ease in machining and heat treatment of the said tool steel. Compared to S-7 and D-3, O-1 is very forgiving. It can attain relatively high levels of hardness along with good level of toughness. On top of that, O-1 can be easily hardened by heating to a dull red and quenching in oil (for firing pins only).

    S-7 and D-3 though better than O-1 are more like ďover killĒ for the purpose at hand. Lets just say, the juice isn't worth the squeeze. Somebody might suggest spring steel but I don't know, Desi terminologies and homeopathic solutions never turn me on. Spring steel is a whole classification of tools steels and without knowing exactly which spring steel one is getting out of a junkyard; one really cannot say anything about its quality.

    Anyways, O-1 is easily available (in annealed or untreated form) at most metal suppliers in the form of round bars of various diameters. I chose 12.7mm diameter tool steel rod even though the firing pin diameter was around 5-6mm.

    A disclaimer as usual: The following content is for informational purposes only. The author assumes no responsibility and/or any liability in case of an injury, accident, loss of life and/or property that may and/or may not occur as a direct and/or indirect result of exercising the information provided below. The reader assumes full responsibility and liability of the foreseen and/or unforeseen consequences that may or may not occur therefore he/she is advised to proceed with full caution. In other words, if you screw this up, don't blame it on me.

    This is how I removed the firing pins:





    This is what the firing pins look like once removed:













    Took the measurements at all the critical places and decided (with the help of Denovo87 bhai and Moeen bhai) to make the firing pins longer by 0.40mm (0.016inch). The objective here is to make only the tips longer and keep everything else the same. The final total length of firing pins is as under:

    Top Firing Pin:
    Before = 30.3mm and After = 30.7mm
    Bottom Firing Pin:
    Before = 31.6mm and After = 32.0mm

    This is how you get the new firing pins made:













    Continued....................
    Last edited by 12GAUGE; 20-02-2012 at 12:30 PM.
    "The possession of arms is the distinction between a freeman and a slave."
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    Senior Moderator 12GAUGE's Avatar
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    This is what the finished firing pins look like:





    Now to extend their service life considerably, they need to be heat treated. The process is fairly simple with O-1 Tool Steel. Just heat the tips (front and rear) of the firing pins to a dull red (caution: dull red only and not cherry/bright red) and immediately quench in any oil (mineral or vegetable) oil.

    NOTE: heat front tip to dull red and quench in oil then heat the rear tip to dull red and quench in oil. Leave the pin soaking in oil and removed once returned to room temperature.

    Here is an excellent video by the Harry Potter of the gunsmithing world:



    Mr. Larry Potterfield refers to the metal as drill rod. You may call it O-1 or drill rod. It’s the same thing. See the end of the video to see how he heat treats the firing pins.

    The Result:

    With the new firing pins in place, I am happy to report that the problem of light firing pin strikes is gone and the strikes are deep and uniform. See for yourself:





    For comparison, this is what the old firing pin strikes looked like:





    One can certainly improve the performance of their budget shotguns with this fairly easy modification. At times all you need is a slightly longer firing pin to get the most out of your shotgun in the reliability department. Best of luck and happy shooting.

    Acknowledgement:

    1. Denovo87 Bhai for working out different solutions to this problem and guiding me accordingly and for knocking some sense in to me and refraining me from making the firing pin longer by 5mm. lols! believe me the temptation was pretty high.

    2. Moeen Bhai for being the "go to guy" in case of a screw up and recommending the right materials for the job.

    3. Shahzad Sb. and Asadullah Sb. for providing me with fabricating and heat treating facility. I am truly thankful of these kind gentlemen who let me take over their routine business for this "annoying" little project. lols!

    4. Amjab Sb. for providing me the desired Tool Steels from Lahore. I cannot truly express my gratitude for the helping hand extended by this fine gentleman in finding the materials and getting them to me on such short notice.

    5. Izhevsky Mekhanichesky Zavod (Baikal) for giving me something to kill over a few million brain cells. hahahhaha.

    Regards.

    Getting The Most Out Of Your Baikal O/U Shotgun - Part 1

    Getting The Most Out Of Your Baikal O/U Shotgun - Part 2
    Last edited by 12GAUGE; 21-02-2012 at 04:58 AM.
    "The possession of arms is the distinction between a freeman and a slave."
    James Burgh, Political Disquisitions, 1774

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    Supreme Member Topak's Avatar
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    Excellent job once again, very rightly done.
    while i was waiting a shipment from Pindi, a thread arrived.
    just for general knowledge.... did they made it on ordinary lathe or any thing special ?
    La Fortune Sourit aux Audacieux

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    Senior Moderator Denovo87's Avatar
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    Weldon 12G bro; I would call it holding the bitch by horns really this shorter firing pin issue is a bitch most of the times a shooter changes, repairs n replaces many innocent parts before getting to the original cause of random lighter strikes.
    Thanks for detailing A to Z procedure of making new striker pin with exact effective measurements.
    Keep your fears to yourself, but share your courage with others.

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    Senior Member M.ASIF KHAN's Avatar
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    Bro you are in position to design your own 12 gauge gun . And i bet your gun will be better than any (B) gun. BUTT gun hahah
    excellent work indeed hat off
    Always Believe in GOD............. Because......... There are some Questions in Grave That can not be Answerd by GOOGLE.

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    Senior Moderator 12GAUGE's Avatar
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    @All Thank you gentlemen. your kind words are highly encouraging.

    Regards.
    "The possession of arms is the distinction between a freeman and a slave."
    James Burgh, Political Disquisitions, 1774

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    Quote Originally Posted by M.ASIF KHAN View Post
    Bro you are in position to design your own 12 gauge gun . And i bet your gun will be better than any (B) gun. BUTT gun hahah
    excellent work indeed hat off
    Hahaha.. very true indeed & I will be the first one to buy it.

    Excellent work done there 12GAUGE bro.. you are a true talented 12gauge master no doubt.

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    Supreme Member Usama's Avatar
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    No doubt you are 12Ga Master , I am really amazed the way you ellaborate and Pictures taken .. keep it up bro ..

  9. #9
    AoA all,

    Great work by brother 12-gauge! MASHALLAH.

    I had the same sort of experience with my ROTTWEIL O/U way back in 1999,I did the same thing although it wasn't a BAIKAL.
    In my experience the poor strike of the firing pin on the primer wasn't due to PIN'S length but:

    The main culprit was SHAHEEN'S HARDER PRIMER SURFACE.

    I used different shells like ELEY(PAK) at that time and the longer firing pins made holes in primers of the shells.

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    Expert Member sajjadkhan's Avatar
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    Excellent work done 12GAUGE Sir.
    "MONEY CAN'T BUY HAPPINESS BUT IT CAN BUY GUNS & AMMO WHICH IS THE SAME THING".

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    Supreme Member Ilyas's Avatar
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    Great project 12G... As usual, once again you have made a very informative and useful contribution to PG, through your "daring" efforts Thanks for sharing

    And BTW... I just love your disclaimers. It bring me a good laugh, everytime I see one

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    Senior Moderator 12GAUGE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mian-50 View Post
    I had the same sort of experience with my ROTTWEIL O/U way back in 1999,I did the same thing although it wasn't a BAIKAL. In my experience the poor strike of the firing pin on the primer wasn't due to PIN'S length but:

    The main culprit was SHAHEEN'S HARDER PRIMER SURFACE.

    I used different shells like ELEY(PAK) at that time and the longer firing pins made holes in primers of the shells.
    Sir, I absolutely agree. what I have experienced that Shaheen on two different production runs has used Steel (Yes!) and Brass primers. I suspect, the steel primers are the main culprits here as they require a strong and relatively deep strike to ensure reliable ignition.

    another thing worth mentioning here is that I have seen many cartridges (new and used) and found that the primer seating depth varies from cartridge to cartridge. if a primer is seated too deep, it can very be a cause for light primer strikes.

    then there is the thickness of the cartridge rim. I have also seen them vary a lot in Shaheen which can also increase/decrease the distance between the primer face and firing pin. This can also a potentially result in light primer strikes.

    as for longer firing pins making holes in the primers is concerned, a little too long firing pin could have been causing it. that is exactly why I gave exact before and after measurements of the length of the firing pins. whole idea of firing pins longer by just 0.4mm is to ensure deep/strong primer strikes and at the same time eliminating the possibility of punctured primers.

    Regards.
    "The possession of arms is the distinction between a freeman and a slave."
    James Burgh, Political Disquisitions, 1774

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    Supreme Member colt 1911's Avatar
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    Awesome! keep up the good work bro!

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    dear hassan bhai you are you & nobody like you !
    you realy did a wonder full work the fire pins are looking realy good
    sir if you need anything else please don`t hassitate it`s my pleasure
    and i also miss the tour of peshawar with you and mr naveed .that was lovely tour .

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    Supreme Member Mig's Avatar
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    Guru ji is transformation every piece of Baikal to more tougher tankness Keep it up Sir !!

    Getting The Most out of Baikal,, also that Wood Stippling should be part of this series I think which you did. 1,2,3,4

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    Senior Member Kamranwali's Avatar
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    Salam All,
    12Gauge Bro, simply awesome. Amazing work.

    The kind of work you, Denovo Sb and Moeen Bhai are doing is simply jaw dropping. Restorations and customizations, you guys have taken this way beyond simply calling it a hobby.

    Regards.
    Guns will make us powerful; butter will only make us fat. Hermann Wilhelm Goering.

  17. #17
    Senior Moderator 12GAUGE's Avatar
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    @All

    Thank you gentlemen.

    @Amjad Ali

    Thank you sir jee for the kind words. I also miss our trip to Peshawar. it was one fun day.

    @Mig

    Bro, I humbly believe that Baikal Shotguns have the potential to be excellent firearms. however their performance is only limited by the fact that are budget oriented and as such the manufacturer cannot spend time and resources in refining them. This is where the owner can step in and provide the time and resources required to realize the true potential of Baikal Shotguns.

    About the separate thread, thats a great Idea. I should have made a separate thread about it. Now I will take some detailed pictures of the stippling and post them as a separate "getting the most out of your Baikal shotgun - Part 4".

    Regards.
    "The possession of arms is the distinction between a freeman and a slave."
    James Burgh, Political Disquisitions, 1774

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    12 GAUGE
    Keep up your good work.
    You are absolutely right, a longer firing pin than designed can pierce a primer sending gases back into the firers face, also it voids the warranty and safety of the gun, as an auto can Slam Fire and a double can fire on closing the action.
    JU

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    12gague, tusi great ho!
    I am in many ways name less, many ways shame less, I can be the purest soul with evil as my goal, I can be the story untold.

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    Enthusiast Syed Tanveer Shah's Avatar
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    Good job! 12GUAGE
    Always dO wOt U afraid TO DO !!!

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