I apologize in advance if there are already posts that deal with this set of issues. I tried the search feature and could not figure out if there were SVT operation problems already covered in the past...
Took my new to me 1943 Tula SVT-40 to the range today for a trial run at 100 yards from a bench. Loaded Soviet 1986 Frunze/60 LPS light ball ammo that has given me zero problems with my Mosins into the magazine.
I pulled back the bolt carrier handle and let it go forward, sighted in with a 6 o'clock hold on a paper target, and pulled the trigger. Nothing happened. I waited for 30 seconds in case it was a hang fire, then extracted the cartridge. The firing pin strike was just a bit off center, but not too bad. The primer itself had been knocked into the primer pocket, about what like one would see if a Mosin-Nagant rifle had not had its firing pin protrusion set properly. I reloaded, and the second round fired. I then had the third round jam going into the chamber, where the bolt could not be closed with a tap of the heel of the hand on the bolt handle, and it could not be opened. I got out a block of wood, and tapped on the bolt handle until it ejected the round. That may be a dirty chamber issue of some kind, and so I'll have to get into the chamber flutes.
I attempted to fire the remaining rounds in the magazine, and I had a total of four rounds detonate and eject from the rifle, and a total of four where the cartridge would not detonate, and the primer appeared crushed. I decided the rifle was not safe to shoot, unloaded it, put the ammo away, and then cleaned the rifle with Hoppe's #9. I drove to a gunstore where there is a gunsmith I know, and he allowed me to take it apart there, and also detail stripped the bolt.
The firing pin appears like new, intact, and it protrudes a good ways out of the bolt face when struck. The hammer appears to fly forward and strike the rear of the bolt with a lot of force.
I was wondering:
A) How ammunition sensitive is the SVT Tokarev design?
B) Is it possible for the bolt when locked to depress the disconnector, allowing the hammer to fly forward when the trigger is pulled, but because the receiver shelf that the bolt locks down into from the camming motion of the bolt carrier is a separate piece in the receiver in order to adjust for headspace, can the trigger operate the hammer while the bolt is locked, but not fully in battery? Does this make any sense?
C) Is this actually a headspace issue of some kind? What is the remedy for this kind of issue with a Tokarev rifle?
D) The rifle is a refurbished STI import with reblued parts and so on. Everything is electropencilled/ forced matched. The trigger group assembly is all Kovrov parts, but just about everything else is Tula.
I enjoyed shooting the rifle during the few times that it went "bang." About as loud as I thought it would be from the muzzle-brake, and relatively milder recoil from the self-loading mechanism.