Heinlein said, “Specialization is for insects,” but…

…that was before the Internet. He’d probably also approve of specialized online commerce.

I’ve marveled before on this blog at commercial websites dedicated to meeting very specialized needs, that seem to do good business. Often you can freely buy things online that are restricted (mostly senselessly) by state law. This weekend I discovered another, even more specialized, example.

You know what you don’t want to happen? You don’t want your favorite everyday carry handgun to completely crap the bed during a weekend with frickin’ Gun Jesus. That would be … embarrassing. And that’s exactly what my .44 did. It has always had a fraught relationship with the hard primers on reloads, but worked just fine with commercial ammo. This weekend I started getting light strikes on everything.

In some settings, “click” is the loudest noise there is.

An adjustment allowed me to slightly ameliorate the problem and rescue the situation somewhat. But it was definitely time to replace yet another mainspring – because that’s apparently going to be a running theme of my experience as a budding young revolver guy. The regular retail sites weren’t any help but Ian put the question out there to his Facebook crowd. Later he texted me a link to these guys. Wolff Gunsprings makes – you guessed it, gun springs and sells them online. Probably competitive shooters know all about them so I shouldn’t be embarrassed by never having heard of them – but waitaminit: Ian’s a competitive shooter and he didn’t know about’em either. Of course he’s likely to show up at a 2-gun match with an 1811 Elbonian matchlock repeater, so maybe that particular knowledge isn’t relevant to his specialty. 🙂

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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10 Responses to Heinlein said, “Specialization is for insects,” but…

  1. Sendarius says:

    Wolff are good people, selling good products.

    Years ago, I needed springs for a competition gun that I was working on. I rang Wolff (from Oz), only to be told that the computer said they didn’t have any in stock. I placed an order for the next run, and settled down to wait a couple of weeks or more..

    Two days later the springs arrived, with a hand-written note saying “I didn’t believe the computer, so I checked the stock room and found these. Have fun!”

  2. Norman says:

    Whatever springs your gun(s) use, buy several. Then buy more so you have quantities on hand. And replace them prophylactically. Springs are cheap, a non-working gun is very, very expensive. (Same rule applies to spare parts for, well, everything, not just guns).

    Pro Tip: When they arrive, label them clearly because 8 months later you’ll be looking at 3 similar but not identical springs (or other parts) trying to remember which goes where.

  3. Charles Boentgen says:

    Wolff Gun Springs is pretty much THE place to check for springs for firearms.

    At what point do you simply replace the Taurus with something else? You could still send it in for warranty work before selling it off.
    Off hand in medium frame big bores there’s S&W M69 (L frame, 5 shot, 44 mag) and Ruger makes the GP100 in a 5 shot 44 Special.


  4. The conventional wisdom is that Federal primers are “softer” than other primers. If you look at the reloading sites you will see they are the primer-of-choice for lever-actions. I do not know if their softer/more sensitive reputation also applies to large pistol primers.

  5. beaner49 says:

    Like you said the web is the place for everything..
    Relative primer hardness list….

    Posted February 22, 2012
    Thanks Kootenai for the link but the Wire Search Engine seems to have a re-direct to all the goofy companies – so here’s the text:

    listed from hardest to softest

    Federals are not the softest primers. Remingtons are. But CCI’s are the hardest

    22 Oct 2010

    Test Procedure: Using a Lee Hardness Tester that measures Brinell hardness, placed a new primer on a piece of steel. Held the indent ball on the primer for 30 seconds. Measurement is the diameter of the indent, smaller numbers indication harder brass

    Pistol primers

    0.32 – CCI 300 LP

    0.38 – Federal GM150 Match LP

    0.40 – Federal 155 LP Magnum

    0.40 – Winchester WLP

    0.42 – Federal 150 LP

    0.42 – Federal 100 SP

    0.44 – CCI 400 SP

    0.48 – Remington 2 ½ LP

    Rifle primers

    0.26 – CCI BR-2 LR

    0.28 – CCI 200 LR

    0.32 – Federal 215 LR Magnum

    0.34 – Remington 9 ½ LR

    Note: Rifle primers are harder than handgun primers!

    Lot Numbers were not recorded

    Enjoy your reloading fun and you could, just could, get a different (better) pistol.
    I shoot the S&W 25-5 in 45 Colt and never have had a light primer strike ( 10,000 rounds and counting}

  6. Anonymous says:

    I’m sorry that the Taurus was acting up, but I’m sure the Wolff Spring will solve the issue. A long time ago, after having issues with a very cheap 1911, I found out about them. Now Wolff Springs are in most of my firearms.

  7. Kentucky says:

    Hey, you were tipped off to Wolff back in 2011 . . .



  8. Joel says:

    Yeah, in hindsight it’s true. Haven’t heard from Buck in a long time, hope he’s doing well.

  9. Tam says:

    I’m honestly surprised at Ian not knowing about Wolff. They are to gun springs what…I dunno…Mec-Gar, maybe?…is to magazines.

    They’re not just the biggest aftermarket supplier, but a huge OEM source as well.

    Now, IMSI? That’s racegun esoterica.

  10. Joel says:

    I’m honestly surprised at Ian not knowing about Wolff. They are to gun springs what…I dunno…Mec-Gar, maybe?…is to magazines.

    🙂 At the risk of losing my gun culture lodge pin, I confess I never heard of Mec-Gar before this morning.

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