Disassembly and Reassembly of the Nagant Model 1895 Lockwork

or, The Secret Blind Hole

This odd Imperial Russian revolver has a gas-seal mechanism that slightly increases bullet velocity and makes the revolver capable of using a suppressor or "silencer", at the expense of a terrible double-action trigger pull. Many arsenal-refurbished models have been imported to the US, and before the recent nastiness involving a deliberate inflationary policy and the US-Russia proxy war, were very inexpensive, selling for under a hundred dollars.

Here we'll reveal the secret blind hole that makes disassembling the internal lockwork very easy.

This lovely example was made in imperial Russia in 1915, during the unpleasantness of 1914-1918, which opened the door for the Bolsheviks to spoil everything. It's marked "ТУЛЬСКЇЙ ИМПЕР. ПЕТРА ВЕЛИК. ОРУЖ. ЗАВОДЪ 1915", which can be read as "Tulaski Imper. Petra Velik. Oruzh. Zavod 1915", or as an English speaker might say, "Tula Emperor Peter the Great Weapons Plant 1915."

Here's the revolver with the cylinder already removed.

In what follows, up, down, left, right, front, and back are from the point of view of the pistol.

To open the lockwork we remove the sideplate screw from the right side just above the grip panel and let the left sideplate fall out. If it's too tight to fall out, put the screw in again just two or three turns and tap on the screw head with a block of wood or a brass or nylon hammer to knock the left sideplate loose. Then remove the screw and let the sideplate fall off.

Now the lockwork is revealed. Cock the hammer to push the mainspring down, and the secret blind hole in the right sideplate is revealed, between the mainspring top and the hammer, just left of the sideplate screw hole. Turn the sideplate screw into the blind hole.

Here the sideplate screw is installed in the blind hole.

Let the hammer down. Now the mainspring is held down by the sideplate screw in the blind hole. This greatly facilitates subsequent steps.

Pull the trigger all the way back,

and wiggle the hammer out. With the hammer out, we can see the hand, which extends from the rear of the trigger up to the cylinder. Tip it back out of the slot in the recoil shield and lift it out.

Notice how the trigger tail passes through the slot in the sliding breech block. (The top of the mainspring sort of points to it.) You'll arrange it this way again on reassembly.

Now the trigger can be lifted out.

Remove the trigger guard by holding it with upward pressure and losening the screw at the front. The screw need not be removed completely; the trigger guard will rotate downward when the screw is loose, pivoting on the stud at the rear. After it rotates downward and is no longer under mainspring pressure, lift it out.

Now the sideplate screw can be removed from the secret blind hole and the mainspring can be lifted out. If it's a bit stiff just work it up and down on its pivot pin at the rear.

Only two internal parts are left--the rocking breech on the left, and the sliding breech block on the right. The sliding breech block is the one with the slot into which the tail of the trigger fits. It slides down in its grove and tips out with a little fiddling.

Last of all is the amazing rocking breech. It rotates back and can then be lifted off its pin.

Reassembly is just the reverse of disassembly.

Good luck. And if things go badly, it's not my fault!

Now you're one of the few living persons who know the secret of the blind hole.

The amazing rocking breech pushes the whole cylinder forward when the revolver is cocked. These strange cartridges with recessed bullets then seal the gap between the cylinder and the barrel when the narrow case mouth is pushed into the forcing cone and the cartridge discharges. Clever, that Nagant fellow.

Other Curio & Relic Firearms

© 2023 Porter Rockwell

Valid HTML 4.0 Transitional     Valid CSS