eMGunslinger

Lewis Gun Problems

Location:

6 posts in this topic

I have a 303 Lewis Gun that is just driving me crazy. Got it back in October and attempted to shoot it. Set the spring weight from 8-15LB using a scale and it made no changes. Gun would fire 1-2 rounds and short stroke, on high speed footage the pan doesn't spin clockwise all the way so then it backfeeds and leaves a round partially out of the pan. Total pain in the ass to get unstuck. So I put the gun up for awhile while I inspected parts and got different ammo. In the meantime I noticed the gun was on the smaller gas setting and figured this was the problem.

Today I went to the range with it on the large gas setting, set the main spring to 14LB and progressively worked my way down to about 9LB. High speed camera again the carrier reciprocates back within about 1/2" of making a full stroke then the carrier goes forward where it gets stuck about 2" before going to battery on an empty.

Even putting 1 round in the feed tray and pulling the trigger rapidly yields the same results 

Things I have tried

*Different gas settings
*Different ammo
*Checked the feed mech it all appears in order the drum feeds at it should and the pawls are grabbing correctly
*Took the gun apart and the radiator out, the gas block is on the barrel very tight so I do not feel there is any leakage there.
*Action is smooth as can be, do not observe any dragging or anything parasitic that could cause an energy loss

Things I have not tried 
*Different pan
*Different carrier/OP rod

I have noticed the *Nozzle or Gas Chamber Gland* that screws on the end of the barrel its threaded almost like there is supposed to be a booster on it for more backpressure? Am I missing something here, because at this point either I am or there is some magic rain dance I am not doing right to get this thing working lol.

I have video of it shooting if it will help anyone help me out with this bastard child.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can offer a few suggestions.  The front end of the op rod can be a major source of gas leakage, as it gets the major blast of gas and most of the old ammo was very corrosive.

If you go over to www.machinegunboards.com you will find a forum dedicated to the Lewis and Bren guns.  There are a few very helpful guys there that are intimate with the Lewis who can probably help you out.

The threads in the "nozzle" are for a blank firing adapter and have nothing to do with operation with regular ammo.

Bob Naess at Black River Militaria in Vermont is very knowledgeable about Lewis Guns and other old time guns so if the guys over at machinegun boards can't help, he might be able to.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted it there as well last night,  Bob confirmed some of my thoughts on it as well so I’m gonna look hard at the pistons and gas system in general.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, I saw that a little after I posted here.  Good luck with your Lewis.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Before you go crazy changing out parts, try a different drum.

M

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What ammo are you using / have you tried?  174gr Prvi is good.  The HXP Greek surplus is also good.  Ammo can cause problems like you describe.  As suggested above also try different drums.  Right now they are cheap so you should get some extra if you don't have them already.  With ammo as listed above and several drums to try then play with the clock spring tension (more and less).  Forget exact spring settings - you may need to find the one that works for your gun (sounds like you did some of that already).  Make sure that it is not unwinding as you re-seat it into the gun (swing it back up).  You checked to make sure that there is no crud built up inside the gas block?  You have the pin inserted between the receiver and shroud (I ask since I've seen a missing pin cause the receiver to slightly rotate and the gun would not run correctly)?  Load the drum full every time or have you tried loading varying numbers of rounds for different tries (bent drum in one area / out of round drum issues)?

Drums, ammo and spring adjustments are usually the main culprits when I am getting a Lewis to work.

If you load a live round and get the gun to cycle without the drum then you narrowed the drum as the issue.  Try working ammo and spring adjustments without the drum (one shot at a time) to get the gun to cycle and then you've eliminated 2 of the 3 possible issues.

I love Lewis guns.  Once they are properly set up they generally run very well and are quite accurate.  If you tire of the one that you have let me know!  Good luck and let us know.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now