Qu. about modifying H&R .22 cylinder
So I have an H&R Young America .22 (long) revolver that I inherited which has a split cylinder. I've been looking on and off for about 5 years for a replacement cylinder whenever I think about it and have yet to find an exact replacement. So when I came across a cylinder from a slightly different model H&R I grabbed it in the hopes of modifying it to fit. This cylinder is from a .22 LR model pistol and so even though it has the same spacing and indexing, it's a tiny bit thicker walled (larger OD) and a few hundredths of an inch longer.
I'm not sure about what issues I'd run into trying to face the cylinder, or turn it down to a smaller diameter, so I figured I'd ask. A) Is this plausible/possible to do? b) Can anybody give me a few hints on how to proceed so I don't go into the project relying only on my (often faulty) imagination?
Last edited by hal9000; 05-26-2012 at 09:29 PM.
H&R made many low priced revolvers based on similar sized frames. The Young America resembles my Trappers Model, also a seven shot revolver. I don't know if the cylinders are interchangeable or not.
Before embarking on any modifications to another cylinder, why the original cylinder split should be considered. The original models were made in the day of low velocity ammunition and the original 22 Long is even lower power, not to mention almost impossible to locate. I would be hesitant to fire a modern 22 LR in my Trappers Model, I only use shorts in it. I would be even more hesitant to fire a modern 22LR in a cylinder that has had the wall thinned.
The reason for the split is no mystery. The outer wall of the OE cylinder is maybe .010 thick including the nickel plating. If I modify the spare cylinder I got (outer walls on that one are .030 or so) I'm planning on leaving the cylinder walls as thick as the frame will allow... hopefully a little thicker than the original. But I still wouldn't fire anything but .22 long or shorts out of it. Both are readily available at several of my local gun shops.
Really the project is more about getting one of my few heirlooms guns back into firing shape than anything else. Not like I'd make a regular shooter out of it.
If repairing the OE cylinder was an option, I'd probably just do that, But I don't see how a safe or reliable repair could be made.
Last edited by hal9000; 05-28-2012 at 06:00 PM.
Might turning down the OD make the cylinder stop notches too shallow?
I would think facing off the length should be fairly easy to get right, if you can hit the tolerance. Seems to me the barrel cylinder gap is fairly tight, I don't have data but I'm thinking .005" or so. Seems it might be difficult to face off the correct amount and hit the right gap.
Those are the only thoughts I have.
Numrich shows the nickel .22 cylinder in stock, if yours is nickel.
Mine is Nickel. Numrich didn't have it the last time I checked.... I'll have to see if they're asking a realistic price for it.
I thought about the stop notches too. I'm thinking I could machine them deeper if needed....
Last edited by hal9000; 05-28-2012 at 06:07 PM.
Looks like the one in stock, at least the on I see, is .32 rimfire. Any chance it would be easier drill that out insert bushings and chamber them?
I thought the one I looked up was .22rf for a young america. It's been more than a week since I checked (dealing w/ personal issues at the moment, hobbies went right out the window for a bit), but if it is a .32 then I'd say it would be a no-go. The OD is likely to be so much bigger that machining it to fit would mean cutting into the plugs/sleeves used to change the caliber, and the drive gears/spindle diameter would more than likely be different. Probably more work than modifying the one I already have.
I think Numrich wanted $33 for the cylinder. Probably a fair price. I doubt I could get the machining done in a short enough time to call it a money saving step, but I might give it a try just to see IF I can do it...
To that end, has anybody done anything like this (shortening or machining the outside of a cylinder, or making one from scratch)? I'd love to get some technical advice if anybody here has done it.
Years ago I made a cylinder for an old Iver Johnson and it was really not difficult at all, I was totally green to machining at the time but an old hand at a mine where I worked helped me out in the repair shop during lunch breaks until I finished it. He had me cut it from a short bar, don't know the alloy since he just gave it to me and well steel was just steel to me then, but IIRC the hardest part was the indexing notches. Hopefully some of the more experienced people will come in with some info but personally I wouldn't hesitate to make a cylinder for that pistol if it were mine. I think that with a bit of effort you can make a cylinder that will not only work but will be a heck of a lot stronger than the original!
Thanks Radkins. I can see what needs to be done, but I'm still pretty green myself so the more step by step type info I can get the better.... Anything that sounds like a handy tip probably is at this point!