help, stuck bolt in Fox-Sterlingworth

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help, stuck bolt in Fox-Sterlingworth

Postby JoePalouse » Sun Aug 09, 2020 1:11 pm

Gentlemen, I'm new here and have a problem I've not found in the forum (yet).
I have a little experience with stock refinishing, parts replacement and cleaning, but this has me stumped and I need advice rather than applying force to something I don't quite understand.
This Fox Sterlingworth was brought to me with the barrels and butt removed, and the trip button and its spring removed (but in a bag, and apparently in good condition).

The problem is that the bolt has rotated closed, and without the trip, apparently went too far and is locked tight. The lever is slightly to the right but stuck firmly over the tang screw and will barely budge at all.
As you are aware, there don't seem to be detailed disassembly instructions available for this action, at this point.
Can anyone tell me how to unlock this mechanism? I have no idea where to start applying pressure, or what needs to be taken apart in what order to get to it.

Failing that,
Are there any Fox-capable gunsmiths in the eastern Washington/north Idaho area that I could take it to?

I would be grateful for any advice you may kindly offer. Thanks in advance -
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Re: help, stuck bolt in Fox-Sterlingworth

Postby Brian Dudley » Tue Aug 11, 2020 8:13 am

This will happen without the trip in place. It takes a little careful force and wiggling of the mechanism to get it to work free. I dont really know what else to say than that.
,Brian Dudley
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Re: help, stuck bolt in Fox-Sterlingworth

Postby bbman3 » Tue Aug 11, 2020 12:20 pm

Brian is correct i had this to happen when i was restocking a Fox and cannot remember exactly how i got lever open but have patience and take your time. Bobby
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Re: help, stuck bolt in Fox-Sterlingworth

Postby JoePalouse » Tue Aug 11, 2020 12:44 pm

Brian & Bobby, thanks for the replies, although they offer hope but not a specific cure. I need to know what parts to wiggle!
Perhaps a couple of ideas I have may jog your memory:
You say to apply a little careful force and patience. OK, two places occur to me to do that:
1. Make a small, right-angle crescent wrench (kind of like a letter "F" ) and apply that to the shaft between the top lever and the trigger plate. The idea here is to help out the torgue that would normally be applied to the top lever, in an effort to rotate the locking bolt.
2. Make some sort of key to insert into the front of the locking bolt and apply rotational force to turn it, while pushing on the top lever.

Now, these ideas are thought up in ignorance of any other thing that may be holding that bolt in place, such as a detent or spring. That shaft below the lecer, for inshance, has a screw with a ball tip about midway down it. the ball bears against a cone-shaped piece which seems to be spring-loaded, but is very difficult to move - or apply pressure to. I suspect it has something to do with this lock-up but don't know what, or how to get to it, yet.

Do these thoughts help anyone to remember how I could solve this puzzle?
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Re: help, stuck bolt in Fox-Sterlingworth

Postby Fox20obsessed » Tue Aug 11, 2020 10:45 pm

You might try gently tapping the top of the top lever right at the pivot point with an appropriately sized piece of hard wood, small nylon hammer, or perhaps a drumstick while applying pressure to the lever. Sometimes the shock will break it loose. Be gentle and try everything in your power to not bend the top lever. You really shouldn’t need to build any special tools to get it unstuck. I assume that since the wood is removed you have tried spraying some lube into the rotary bolt cut-outs at both the breech face and on the backside near the yoke?
Let us know if you get it figured out.
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Re: help, stuck bolt in Fox-Sterlingworth

Postby JoePalouse » Fri Aug 21, 2020 4:10 pm

Gentlemen, I've solved the puzzle! Of I can post a picture, it shows a brass punch resting on the ball-headed screw that pushes against a detent when the lever is turned. I did tap on that, after lots of penetrating oil was applied. And what do you know - it worked once. Then it didn't... But this time I applied some pressure into the bolt, from the breech face. I think it was pressing against the conical projection inside the bolt, from the front, that freed it this time. Not certain.
In any event, this time I got the trip inserted back in to hold the bolt open.
Luckily the F-S is a later one with a stock bolt, allowing me to completely reassemble the action and adjust alignment of triggers, safety, tang screws, etc. before sliding the stock on from the rear. Sterly #143463 lives again!
Thanks Fox20Obsessed for the advice to tap on it. I was going to say something clever about a drumstick solo but ... No. Anyway, thank you Fox folks for some pretty essential help!
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Re: help, stuck bolt in Fox-Sterlingworth

Postby vaturkey » Fri Aug 21, 2020 5:58 pm

Glad it worked out for you.
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Re: help, stuck bolt in Fox-Sterlingworth

Postby Foxnut » Fri Aug 21, 2020 6:59 pm

Good thread and informative. Thanks for sharing info.
Regards - Foxnut
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