<blockquote><I>"...been there a week, should be done this week..."</I></blockquote>This is one reason why I would rather send it to Doug Braker. I sent him my TMS, and got it back a lot faster than this. That's not to say that this is an unreasonable time, just that Doug is really fast.
I bought my MX3 combo in the early 80s. It did the exact same thing that you described. I had a new top lever spring installed and that took care of the problem for about 15 years. When it started to do it again,I knew what it was and had the top lever spring changed right away. I'm closing in on 100,000 of all three events and this MX3 has shot 90% of those targets. I did have the fireing pin holes fixed,but other than that and a few hammer springs and fireing pins,it still works great. It doesn't need any welding. Take it to one of the gun smiths that the guys on here have suggested and tell him to put a new top lever spring in it and then give it a good cleaning with the stock off. When you have this tune up done,have new fireing pin return springs installed also.
I have never let this MX3 snap closed. I hold the top lever open,close the action and then let the top lever close.It makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up when I hear some guys slam their action closed. I guess that this is what my wife would say is just another of my personal short commings.
Jack.. There is no top lever update for a MX3.. Only a few of the early ones had a teflon coated locking bolt.. that was a problem.. After all these years..I'd think it would have been changed by now.. If he drops the trigger..and looks at the number stamped on the locking bolt.. if it's anything other than a 09 or 08 The locking bolt has been changed..
The angles might be wrong on either the bolt.. barrel ears.. or both.. combined with a soft top lever return spring.. Any good Perazzi smith can easily fix it..Dan.. at Giacomo Sporting is always my first go to guy.. Doug..Phillip.. Stu Wright..are also excellent..less we not forget Whiz..
For my friends.. this sort of thing is overnight at worst...but then again.. I'm not to busy..I don't have many friends.. It's not rocket science.. just correct fitting of the locking bolt.. You should not have to much angle on either.. and they need to be a tiny bit different .. Also.. a good check of the barrel to receiver fit.. can often prevent the bolt from sticking..on older guns... I'm having some soft locking bolts made.. as we speak.. to see about reducing the wear on the barrel ears.. The locking bolt is made to be the sacrificial part.. Many I see are harder than the barrel mono-block.. That is a bad thing..
Whom ever does the repair should check all the above.. I know Dan,Stu,Phillip,and Doug ALWAYS do.. That's how it's done.. and while the gun is apart.. a #121 top lever return spring is a must.. even if its good..Keep them fresh..
A 100% correctly fitted locking bolt could use a half dead #121 and never open..As the locking bolt/barrel wears.. it seldom does so..exactly like we might want.. A good smith will check both the ear angle.. and the bolt angle..and find a happy medium..
As hinge pins wear.. and pivots on the barrel.. and headspace on the barrel..many exact numbers go out the window.. For everything to be smooth.. you sometimes need to find the happy medium.. the balancing act is more than changing a few parts.. That's what seperates the men from the boys.. Not a big issue in new guns.. but those 30 years old.. Yea.. it's an issue sometimes.. Anyway.. hope this all helps.. All Good.. Mike... BTW.. the locking bolts should be in soon.. I'll let you know how they work out..
There was an updated top lever return spring AND plunger. When Perazzi came out with the "new" MX-3, that is when they changed the plunger design to the one spring and plunger. Whereas prior to that, the plunger was similar to the TM-1s, and using two springs.
That first style of plunger and spring had a spring with a small diameter. The new springs have a diameter of .172" (4.37mm). The plunger also has a larger diameter (partial)hole to accommodate this spring. The new spring will not fit into the old plunger.
I'm not sure, but when the MX-3 Special came out, is when Perazzi went to the larger spring.
Now, as a side note...There are a few MX-8 style of guns) that use even a larger spring with it's own plunger. This spring measures a diameter of .214" (5.45mm). I've only run across two ever here in my shop.
So, to what MIA was stating, yes..updating the spring and plunger will extend the life of the spring.
As for the gun popping open, we've been through this before...the spring should only close the top lever...tight. The angles on locking bolt and the angles on the bbl are what should hold the gun tight. The locking bolt should not move, even without the springs.
PerazziBigBore said: "I'm having some soft locking bolts made.. as we speak.. to see about reducing the wear on the barrel ears.. The locking bolt is made to be the sacrificial part.."
Mike, GREAT IDEA! Anything that helps avoid welding on the barrel ears is a great idea! How long would you think the "softer" locking bolt would last before needing to be replaced? How many softer locking bolts would you estimate would be replaced before the barrel would have to be touched?
Doug.. I have some larger housings and springs if you ever need them... I knew about the parts change #111/121 and even the 2 piece springs.. The top lever threw me.. I knew of only one...
As far as the locking bolts.. I will put a few in the field for free.. and our fellow shooters will be the testing grounds.. I might be on to something.. I might be spinning my wheels...but alot of locking bolts I see are harder than the factory mono-block.. I think that is wrong... I changed a locking bolt last week that would barely cut with a file... talk about hard..
I'm looking into a hard face for the barrel ears..that will last and not chip or crack.. then I think the locking bolts could be harder.. and last alot longer..
Anyway.. I always look at ways to make a good product better..
Oh.. Doug.. I welded up my first top lever... never again..You will get all my broken top levers in the future..
Had mine doing same thing...thought "heck im 50 minutes from Moneymakers in Omaha" just take it there. Called them and they said with SUCH conviction how many they have done I took it there. After 3 return trips and wasted money with poor workmanship I contacted Doug from recomendations on this forum. Got the gun back and was treated very fairly and work was A1, as well as the business we did. Great guy! Highly reccomend. PLEASE dont waste time with those other guys just listen to the advise of this forum and you will be steered straight. I regret ever letting Moneymakers touch my gun! I am not one to name drop but they deserved it. Stick with known names like Doug and Giacamo (sp??) its worth it in the end.