1955 Sweet 16 locks open with round on the rail

Discussion in 'Browning Auto A-5' started by Disbo2112, Jan 7, 2018.

  1. Disbo2112

    Disbo2112 .22LR

    Hey folks,

    I recently picked up this nice 16.. and about 25% of the time it would lock open with the 2nd round on the rail. I changed ammo and then move the ring down for light loads.

    Worked great for about 200 rounds.. now today happened again?

    Remove the ring?

    Why doesn't the gun realize there is a 2nd round and load it.. Im a bit hesitant to shoot pairs at the clay range without looking to see if the bolt is back...HA

    thanks for any help.

    Cheers P1010019.JPG P1010022.JPG P1010028.JPG C

    Attached Files:

  2. Rudolph31

    Rudolph31 .30-06

    The rim of the shell hitting the Carrier Latch trips the Carrier up and sends the bolt home. Could be a problem with the latch, but it also could be a weak Magazine Spring. You can take it out and stretch it while you’re waiting for your new one from Midwest Gun Works. While you’re ordering stuff, best get a new Action Spring and possibly a new Recoil Spring.

    Nice gun, by the way .


    I just realized you said that you’re new to shotguns so I thought some links would be helpful. I get most of my parts from MGW, and the mag spring can be found here:


    From there you can navigate the site to get other parts. The Action Spring is the spring in the stock that returns the bolt to battery. It’s probably the most neglected part on the Auto-5 and also one of the easiest to replace. You will need a set of thin screwdrivers to remove the stock screws. MGW has them but I prefer these from Brownell’s:

    Last edited: Jan 8, 2018
    SHOOTER13 likes this.
  3. Disbo2112

    Disbo2112 .22LR

    Thanks for the great info. I tried going to brownells to get the screwdrivers.. Not a very easy site to navigate.

    Ill keep digging..

    Im about to order the spring from MGW.. Anything else I should keep on hand and order now?

    Cheers D P1010020.JPG P1010024.JPG P1010020.JPG P1010024.JPG P1010037.JPG
  4. Rudolph31

    Rudolph31 .30-06

    Brownell’s is a difficult site to navigate, which is why I provided the link to the item.

    It’s always a good idea to replace the springs, although if you’re only running target loads you may have trouble cycling with a new Recoil Spring. As for other parts, that depends. Did the problem go away when you stretched the Magazine Spring? Or when you load more than two? If not, you may want to replace the Carrier Latch.
  5. Disbo2112

    Disbo2112 .22LR

    Hey folks,

    I did stretch the recoil spring and worked fine.. for a while so I held off ordering a new one.. Should have taken your advice and just done it... HA

    I put about 50 rounds through it with no issues.. until today

    I had one in the chamber bolt closed and one in the magazine as usual. This time the chamber fired and the mag round. The bolt could not come back and the mag round came back over the feed tray.. see pics.

    This exact thing happened before. to get the bolt to open you have to use a thin screwdriver and push the round back in to the magazine until it catches. Now I could cycle the bolt get the expended case out and get the loaded round out safely.

    You can see the loaded round got chewed up a bit. P1010001.JPG P1010003.JPG P1010004.JPG P1010005.JPG

    Yes, Ill order a new spring like I should have before.. Is there a guide on replacing the action spring?

    From the description above and the photos is this still the same remedy?

    Thanks for all the guidance..Cause I really LOVE this 16... and it was a bummer that I did 5 round before it jammed.. Good thing I had my Superposed

    Cheers D
  6. Rudolph31

    Rudolph31 .30-06

    Your explanation doesn’t make sense as written. But I’m guessing that you experienced a double feed. That is a problem with the Carrier Latch as I’ve elaborated on elsewhere.

    You say you stretched the Recoil Spring, hopefully you meant the MAGAZINE SPRING, as that’s the source of your original problem.

    The Action Spring is in the stock. Remove the lock screw then the stock screw to remove the stock. DO NOT remove the single screw as that secures the Main Spring and you don't ant to f@#$ with that right now.
    SHOOTER13 likes this.
  7. Disbo2112

    Disbo2112 .22LR

    Rudolph, Thanks for the great info. I did get the Mag spring in the other day and put it in. I shot about 100 rounds.. It shot perfectly for about 80 rounds.

    Then the original problem came up again. 1st round fired and ejected. The bolt stayed back and the 2nd is sitting on the feed ramp. All I had to do was push the button and it loaded just fine. Shot it 19 more times with no issues always loading one closing the bolt and feeding one in the magazine tube.

    I feel confident the new mag spring helped greatly. When I compared my old one and the new one there was a 3 inch difference with the longer new spring.

    Still confused why the bolt stays back with a round on the rail?

    Is this the Carrier latch you mentioned?

  8. Rudolph31

    Rudolph31 .30-06

    Yes, you need a slight adjustment there. The rim of the shell sitting on the Carrier is supposed to hit the rear of the Carrier Latch — just as if you’d pushed the button. I think it needs to be bent out a little bit. You can do it with a screwdriver.

    Look at my post “Auto-5 spits live shells” for more info on the Carrier Latch.
  9. Disbo2112

    Disbo2112 .22LR

    Thanks Rudolf, I went to your posting.. Lots of great tools there but more importantly is the skill to use them which obviously you have and better willing to share.

    As you have pointed out (and I whole heartily agree) Im new to shotguns and even minor repairs require "newbie" questions. So thanks for your patience.

    Would it be possible to take a picture of the piece to bend out (perhaps point to it with an awl or small screwdriver? Im sure other newer folks would find it beneficial as well.

    Cheers D
  10. Rudolph31

    Rudolph31 .30-06

    If you hold the gun upside down in your lap and hold the bolt open with one hand while pushing the button with the other, you will see how the latch operates. You can also reach in through the ejection port and push on the rear of the latch to release the bolt — be careful to hold it back or your fingers will get painfully smashed.

    I didn’t have a gun available when I suggested that you could bend the latch with a screwdriver without disassembling it. I now see that the carrier blocks access from the bottom, and if you push the button to get the Carrier out of the way, it holds the latch in. It might be possible to go in through the ejection port. If not, you’ll have to take it apart.

    As for my “skills”, I’m not a gunsmith. But I have learned to take the gun apart and replace parts, and you can too.

    Last edited: Feb 5, 2018
  11. Disbo2112

    Disbo2112 .22LR

    Hey folks,

    I took it out this morning and got about 50 rounds through it and it happened again. I can see the lever that actuates carrier release. Rudolf mentioned to slightly bend that lever. As you can see it is setting in the middle of the other piece. I have to assume that if the end of the lever was closer to the edge this problem should go away. Im not 100% sure how to bend this slightly without tool marks on the bottom of the receiver. Any ideas?

  12. Disbo2112

    Disbo2112 .22LR

    Hey folks,

    Im pretty sure I figured out the mystery.. Turns out out when I put the mag spring I noticed that the wood fore-grip was not flush with the receiver.. Didn't think too much about it but the when the intermittent issued started I realized that if there was the slightest gap then it could malfunction.

    I pushed down on the fore-grip and realized there was another 3/4 of a turn left. Tightened it down and SHAZAM.. Works like a champ!!

    I do love this sweet 16.. it CRUSHES clays better than my 12!

    thanks for the advice

    Cheer D

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