Detail Strip Blues

I’m an odd duck, I LOVE field stripping guns. I like how things come apart and to look at how things go together, and the nature of Field stripping it means no tools, and no small parts.

Detail stripping generally requires tools and has lots of wonky small parts. This type of work gets my heart racing…most often when you drift out a pin or remove a part that holds another part in place, and parts fall out, like when you drift out the sear/disconnector pin from an M1911 and the sear and disconnector just tumble out of the frame. My gut clenches and I think “I WILL NEVER GET THOSE PARTS BACK IN THE RIGHT WAY AGAIN, I DIDN’T EVEN SEE THEM IN THE FIRST PLACE!!111”

Well I noticed what looked like a little rust on the shell elevator of my Mossberg 590 and I decided it needed a good cleaning.

So I tore it down with just a few silly mistakes that held me back and cleaned it up very well. I need to do this a bit more often, some pieces got pitted and that’s a damn shame.

Now I’m a HUGE fan of the Gun Digest assembly/dissasembly guides, but in the case of the Mossberg 500 Entry they really didn’t do a great job at showing the dissasembly well enough to allow for re-assembly.

Thankfully this video is GREAT!

Getting the bolt/slide/operating rods together really tied me up for a bit. Makes sense when you get it all running together, but you don’t really see that interaction when you’re tearing the whole unit apart.

BTW on a side note, I’d like to replace the stock on my 590. The guide implies that I need some sort of special tool….I found another video that says I can do it with just a big allen wrench. What am I in for when I replace the stock?

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0 Responses to Detail Strip Blues

  1. bluesun says:

    Yeah, I never get it when people complain about cleaning their guns–that’s half the fun for me! But then, I’ve got a degree in mechanical engineering, so maybe I’m just crazy.

    But it’s always “interesting” when you take apart something and you hear a poing! and there goes some random spring across the room. That’s no fun in any instance.

    • McThag says:

      That “POING” can be dangerous! I wondered, idly, what pushing the safety up past the “safe” position on my field stripped P238 would do.


      The detent and spring fired out of there and hit my eyebrow hard enough to draw blood. Just a slightly different angle and I would have prolly lost an eye.

      Then I had to find the cursed things in the carpet…

      • Weerd Beard says:

        Yeah, I’m the king of fucking with guns with parts removed so I can see how they work, often times its cool and educating, other times I am punished by the hand of God himself for my meddling with the work of his prophets! 😉

  2. Old NFO says:

    Wait until you lose a spring in the carpet… and CAN’T find the @#&* thing… sigh… Depending on the stock, all you will need is a long hex head screwdriver.

    • Weerd Beard says:

      Back when my 5″ 1911 had the factory FLGR I lost control of the recoil plug and it ran and hid in the dark recesses of the armory….at the same time it took the tip of my thumb off with that sharp edge where the rod passes through (I don’t even own a bushing wrench) so I was hunting AND bleeding at the same time…that SUCKED!

  3. Ted N says:

    Yep, spend a few bucks on some tools and a good workspace, and cleaning is no chore.

    The stock on my 500 is just a hex head screw, can’t think of any reason the 590’d be different.

  4. 45er says:

    I stripped my Thompson 1911 when I was in college and watched in horror as the safety detent spring rocketed across the room and defied the laws of physics by disappearing in mid-air. Unbelieveably, I found the thing, but had no idea where it came from. This was before the days where every college student had a computer and access to the internet, so I was stuck to figure it out on my own. I will tell you, that solidified how to detail strip a 1911 in my brain.

  5. Lokidude says:

    Not odd at all, Weerd, if you have mechanical tendencies. I love fieldstripping guns. One of the first things I do when I get one home.

  6. alcade says:

    You might invest in a small roller magnet, usually found at hardware/farm supply stores to take care of any lost springs on the carpet.

    I don’t mind cleaning my guns, either. My guns are allergic to me, so I’m constantly having to buff rust off of ’em. When I clean my guns I have to wear latex gloves and buff the damn things with silicon cloths or the next time I open the gun cabinet there’ll be rust spots in the shape of my handprints.

  7. Joat says:

    My 500’s have a big flat blade screw holding the stock on, but I think they are both pre ’68 so they might have change to a alen screw on the later ones.

  8. McThag says:

    Step 1: Take Apart.

    To reassemble, simply reverse the disassembly steps.


    • Weerd Beard says:

      Yeah that was what got me. At least in their 1911 instructions it shows clear pictures of how say the disconnector and sear ride in the frame, so that was indeed a snap. Just about everything else only goes in one way, or the book shows it coming out. But yeah, I didn’t get too clear a look at the orientation of that interrupter and shell stop as they dropped out of my receiver at 9.8m/s2 as soon as I popped that FCG out.

      Overall great book. I used it to tear-down and de-grease my SKS and AK variant having never used them before with no issue, and again tearing down my 1911s were a snap thanks to them. But MAN they need to take a mulligan on that entry!

  9. Braden Lynch says:

    Ted N and Joat are right that the 590 (I have replaced my stock with a Speed Feed). It just requires a screw driver for two small butt plate screws followed by a very long screwdriver or hex wrench to get to the bolt head (which has a flat blade groove in it).

    I’m not mechanically inclined, but it was straight forward even for me. Enjoy!

    • Weerd Beard says:

      AWESOME! Thanks. BTW do you have a sling swivel on your speed-feed?

      I was looking through the parts list on midway and I have NO idea where to start, and its not like I need anything fancy, I just don’t want to buy the wrong thing.

  10. Jack says:

    I can second on the “engineer” urge to tinker.

    I’ve been doing some touchup work (bluing and grip polishing) on my 1911 and when I started taking it apart I went “why not” and did a full dis assembly.

    I did have to check a guide on how to put the sear back in. So I loose points there.

    On the plus side I found a much simpler way to put it back together, ending with the mainspring housing.

    • Weerd Beard says:

      MSH should be the first out and the last in. I forget why, but I know if you do something or other with the MSH installed you can get into some trouble.

      • Jack says:

        My guess is that like doing that puts less tension on the various pins of the lock. Which is an issue when removing and installing them, don’t want those holes in the receiver to get mangled.

        Oh well, still learn something. Like I didn’t know first out. That’s handy. Thanks.

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