Resealing the Daisy model 41 pellet pistol: Part 1
by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier
Today’s report is another guest blog from reader Ian McKee who writes as 45 Bravo. Today and tomorrow he will tell us of his experience in resealing a Daisy model 41 pellet pistol.
If you’d like to write a guest post for this blog, please email me at [email protected].
Now, take it away, Ian.
Resealing the Daisy model 41 pellet pistol: Part 1
Writing as 45Bravo
This report covers:
- Resealing two pellet pistols
- History of the elusive Daisy 41
- Separating fact from fiction
- Three phases of the Daisy pellet pistols
- The outside
- The insides
Resealing two pellet pistols
I have resealed dozens of the S&W 78/79 series pistols over the years, and a few of the Daisy 780/790 pistols, but I have never touched one of the Daisy Model 41s.
One of the blog readers reached out to me about resealing a pair of his pistols that have a lot of sentimental attachment. One is an immaculate S&W 79G, the other is the subject of today’s blog.
The S&W reseal went off without a hitch. The pistol still had the factory seals inside, and they crumbled as I tried to remove them. No one had ever been into the pistol since it was new. But that one was easy. It was the model 41 that challenged me.
History of the elusive Daisy 41
This gun’s backstory is the story of the American boy and his pellet gun. He saved the money from his paper route to buy this pistol, and has had it ever since.
I think the Daisy 41 was only produced for 1 year. The Daisy Museum says it ONLY appeared in the 1985 catalog, and they have no records of dates of production, or number of guns produced. The Blue Book of Airguns says it was produced around 1984. I am sure some of our readers who are Daisy collectors will fill in my gaps.
The serial number of this one is 3D00201, so if my information is correct, that decodes as 1983, April, and serial number 00201.
If this gun was made in April 1983, I can’t see Daisy sitting on stock of ready-to-sell guns until the 1985 catalog hit the customers mailboxes. I think it was in the 1984 catalog, especially since the owner of this pistol says he bought it in 1984. But who am I to question the manufacturers?
Separating fact from fiction
From what I have always read and subsequently thought, the Daisy model 41 was the last gasp of the Smith & Wesson target pellet pistol design. Daisy cost-cut the design to the point that it was just a shell of the original design.
I have learned that Daisy had 3 phases of the S&W design, according to the service manual I now have. My service manual is the last one Daisy published for their shop, and covers repairs of the entire lineage of these pistols, from the S&W pistols, to the 41.
Three phases of the Daisy pellet pistols
Phase 1 — the pistols are the same as the S&W 78G and 79G air pistols. [Editor’s note: Usually there are a lot of parts in-process when a transfer like this takes place and the new owners finishes those pistols, which makes them identical to what was being produced.]
Phase 2 — the upper assembly remains the same as the S&W pistols, but it has the redesigned hammer and trigger arrangements that were needed to pass the drop test.
Phase 3 — this is the last run of Daisy 790s and all of the Model 41s. Both guns have the redesigned valve and co2 system.
So, for you dedicated Daisy collectors out there who are looking for the rarest of the rare, according to the service manual, there will be some Daisy 790s that will have the same valve as the 41. Let the hunt begin!
I also had been told by others who had “worked on them,” that the seals were the same, and would interchange.
When you search the Daisy model 41 air pistol online, there are just a few photos of the gun, nothing else. Don’t get sloppy in your search, either. Smith & Wesson also made several versions of a model 41 .22-caliber rimfire target pistol. And they made bunches more of those than Daisy made of the air pistol. Be sure you put Daisy and “air pistol” in your search terms!
Smith & Wesson model 41 target pistol.
Today and tomorrow we will remedy the lack of photos, and we will update the internet searches.
The Daisy 41 pistol that I was asked to repair appears to be a chrome-plated 790 on the outside. [Editor’s note: All Daisy 41 pistols were plated with chrome. And it is real chrome, which is very rare on a gun. Usually nickel is used to plate guns.]
The left side of the Daisy model 41 air pistol.
Same pistol, right.
The slide and frame are metal. The grip panels, CO2 cap, rear sight, bolt and bolt catch are plastic. The velocity adjustment system below the barrel is plastic, just like on the Daisy 790, phase 2. There is only 1 power level for the cocking lever.
The two grip panels are removed by 4 Phillips-head screws — two per panel.
The left grip panel is removed to expose where the CO2 cartridge is loaded.
The CO2 cartridge system is very different than the previous models. It uses a face seal around the piercing pin on the bottom of the valve body. The threaded plastic CO2 cap does not have any seals. It is a plain threaded plastic cap with a wire loop that serves as a handle to screw the cap down and push the cartridge into the base of the grip, where the piercing pin is.
The CO2 cap is plastic, with a wire loop that’s used to tighten it. As it tightens it pushes the CO2 cartridge down into the piercing pin.
Looking down on the piercing pin we also see the face seal that seals the CO2 cartridge. This is an important photo because it also shows a unique feature of the CO2 valve that is partially shown in the center of this picture.
This is BB. I’m ending this report here and breaking it into two reports. This is an important blog and I want to do it right.
Tomorrow I will begin with the disassembly of the Daisy 41 air pistol. Or I should say, 45Bravo will. Stay tuned.