The Gravity-Actuated Bolt Release

Twice in the last week I’ve had conversations with 10/22 owners who said their bolt release lever doesn’t go down unless they hold the rifle in just the right way, and even give it a shake. We’ve written before about how the bolt lock/release operates here and here.

The bolt lock spring pushes the bolt lock plate down. If you worked on your trigger group and the bolt lock lever isn’t forcefully being pushed down, one of three things has happened:

  1. You forgot to install the spring.
  2. The spring is installed backwards, with the dogleg arm on top.
  3. The spring arm is below the bolt lock plate rather than in its notch.

Here is a photo from The 10/22 Companion showing the hammer assembly with the bolt lock spring prepared for installation in the trigger group housing. Note that the hammer sits in the V formed by the spring arms, and the dogleg arm is at the front of the hammer (towards the muzzle).

Hammer and bolt lock spring

Once the hammer is installed, remember to rotate the spring to the rear before installing the bolt lock plate, and afterward to rotate it forward and capture the upper arm under  the ejector pin.

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