Quote Originally Posted by greenwayjames View Post
The above is spot on. The HW system is far superior. Bowkett used to copy it on his BSA Meteor, Mercury, W&S conversions in the 1980's.
The other advantage of the HW system is that the bolt cannot rotate when the rifle is cocked. This results in a "cam" action when the bolt/pin rotates and causes additional problems.
What he said.

I think the conversation between management and the engineers at BSA went something like this -


"Lads, the customers and those picky pricks at the Airgun World are complaining about the jaws spreading on the Mercury"

Engineers "They can buy an Airsporter, mebbe an Airsporter S, if that's the upgrade they're after"

Management "Now lads were're losing out to these German fellows, no-one remembers the War any more, they're buying from them"

Engineers "Send the Peaky Blinders round to that airgun comic, teach them who won."

Management "Fix the jaws spreading on the Mercury, no more out of you or we'll move the operation to Spain"

Engineers "Grumble grumble where's the calipers?"

So instead of designing a good, precise, efficient breech they went with a solution that just 'stopped the jaws spreading'. It's odd because I think the breech lock up on BSA Mercurys and Meteors is really solid while being easy to unlatch, so theres the verticle, but laterally they just couldn't be bothered, twice. Strange British approach to things, so many things like the barrel and overall design were great on the Mercury.