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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Bill,
Two items regarding the Connector Lock and its Pin...

First item: I recently purchased a (new to me) old M1A that is primarily TRW in build. On my initial disassembly, I found that the Connector Lock was very worn, having been peened to a bit more than half of its original diameter by the Recoil Spring Guide. This resulted in a condition whereby the Connector Lock itself was lengthened (it was pounded skinny, so the metal had to go somewhere...)

How often does a Connector Lock get beaten into such a state, getting long and skinny like that, and what might have caused it? The only way to get the spring guide off the receiver was to pull the Connector Lock Pin.

On sliding the Connector Lock Pin to the end of the slot so that the pin wasn't letting go of the Recoil Spring Guide, so I pulled the pin out and found it was just a flimsy (very thin walled) roll pin. This brings me to the

Second Item: Seems I remember the Connector Lock Pins on my issue guns back in the day were a solid steel pin, not at all a roll pin. Is my memory bad, or did somebody just use a roll pin rather than trying to find a real Connector Lock Pin?

For all of your gunslingers out there... these are not expensive items... only 5 bucks for the Connector Lock and a buck for the Lock Pin... but they are a critical link inside the guts of your beast... letting them go unobserved might not be a smart thing to do. Do yourself a favor and check your pins...
 

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The roll pins are used to make it easier to remove the con lock.A roll pin will shear off when you drive the con lock back with a punch. I read about this in books and decided this was the way to go. That pin doesn't have much pressure on it and I think the roll pin is the way to go. I have even taken some rifles to the range and shot them with no pin in the connector lock. The pin basically keeps the con lock from falling out if the spring guide is out and gives you a handle to push it in place.
The connector lock is another story if it is worn or bent It could have a big impact on magazine holding/removing.
Disclaimer: most of this is personal opinion and I am not a qualified armorour.
 

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I am no expert, but the only solid connector lock pins I have seen were Chinese. My GI parts kit has the roll pin, and the SEI Connector Locks I have include roll pins also.
 

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The early sold G.I. pins had a hollowed out end on the end that you inserted into the connector lock. When you put them in, you'd give them a rap with a punch and the end would "flair out" so it wouldn't come back out. As far as I know, the only way to get it out was hopefully get ahold of it with a pair of good pliers and work it back and forth until you destroyed that flair and it would come out. Otherwise, you basically had to drive the connector lock out of the receiver and snap the pin off to get it out. The old solid pins are pretty much impossible to find. I don't think the military has even used them in a long while. All the commercial rifles I've ever seen had a 5/64" x 5/16" or 5/64" x 3/8" roll pin.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, I'm pretty happy to hear that my memory at least hasn't completely let me down. All the M14 and M21 rifles I handled back when I still lived in the barracks and had 20 round 7.62mm mags in canvas pouches on my web gear definitely had solid pins. I stopped fooling with M14s in the summer of 87, at the USAMTU, and they were all solid there, too.

So when I found a roll pin in my new (to me) Maunz rifle I was pretty taken aback.

Thanks for all the good info, guys.
 
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