Ithaca Model 37 Troubleshooting

Moderator: ripjack13


Copper BB
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Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:46 pm
PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:42 pm
Hello from Mauldin SC. I have been shooting Ithaca shotguns since I was a youth, in Michigan. My father and His Father (my granddad) were into hunting since I can remember. I remember me and my brother running in front of them in a field and pheasants’ dropping all around us (my father would be upset). Now that Iam an adult I have A Ithaca model 37 myself. First let me say that my dad’s Ithaca is still running (ran it this past weekend) cause mine is back at the manufacture for a second time. First, this new style yoke, the one that wraps around the barrel with one screw running from left to right would slide forward from rapid fire or any prolong shooting. It’s under warranty so I sent it back, when I got it back, same screw running from left to right but a new screw had been added through the front york and the mag nut, problem fixed no more sliding, good job. (Still might get old style yoke) Second, I have had jamming issues, shells dropping out of the bottom 2 or three at a time since day one. I thought it might be me, being too soft on it so I continued to work on my gun handling skills. Well it was not me, sent it back, and that is where it is right now. I thought it might be a shell stop issue, people at Ithaca said a timing issue. My father is laughing at me saying he has a real Ithaca, all my guys when we shoot together are laughing at me saying "old scatter gun technologies” went to a defense shotgun class, started in cruiser ready, jammed on me, instructor told me to get rid of it. Now its not all bad, people who just see it are blown away by it, slugs fly straight past 25 yds., and yes Iam fast with a slug change over (I can tell you how to do it), and when its running right iam hard to beat in competition. So with all this being said I still believe in this shotgun and the Ithaca name don’t know what’s changed, company moving around could be new manufacturing techniques, who knows and I really don’t care, All i want to do is beat the crap out of the competition yours and mine. They got it right the first time I sent it back and I know they will get it right. any comments or ideas/ feedback

.22LR
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Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2011 2:31 pm
PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 7:59 am
First like I've said a trip to a gunsmith. But if you take the gun down yourself, you will find burrs on the slide stop from the slide hitting it.
The burrs prevent the slide stop from moving as it should, in addition old dried oil/grease in the slide stop keep it from moving as it should. The slide stop should move freely, no binding or sluggish movements.

.410
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2011 10:36 am
dsayer wrote:I've had problems with my M37 since the day I bought it back in February. The gun has been sent in for warranty work once already, and I'm trying to get it sent back in again. However, email response times have been horrible. I sent my initial email on Jul 12th with NO response. Sent another email on August 10th. Got a response Aug. 17th. Emailed again on Aug 22nd, and now have yet to receive a response. I'll copy/paste a portion of the initial email to explain what is going on with the gun. Hopefully I can get a faster response from someone on a Forum.

I sent in my M37 for warranty work back in February, and had it returned to me in March. The invoice number was 10529. I hadn't been able to get out to shoot the gun since it was returned to me until yesterday (this was the thesis semester of my Master's degree program). As you may remember or can see on the invoice, the gun was sent in because it was misfiring and the invoice states "readjusted headspace; retimed carrier and replaced spring shell stop; gun shot ok 10 rounds; Je.R." When I took the gun out yesterday I had the exact same problem I was having back in February. I loaded 3 shells, the first shot went off normally but the gun misfired when I pumped it and also dumped the third shell out of the magazine. Since purchasing this gun I have now put exactly 4 rounds through it with 2 of those being misfires.
I'm no gunsmith, but here is the best description I can give of what's happening when there are no shells loaded. If I press the action release, the forend comes back and then locks into place back in the forward position normally. If I dry fire the gun, the forend does not lock back into its forward position and the trigger remains as though I just pulled it and safety will not engage unless the forend is pulled all the way back. However, if I do this VERY slowly the forend will lock into the forward position after a dry fire.


I am sorry, but I did not see if there were any results from this other than the return authorization. Out of curiosity, are you trying "slam fire" this gun?

Newer M37's have a disconnector that prevents this. If attempting to fire it by continuously pulling the trigger on a model with a disconnector you would fire the first shell, and when the slide was cycled, the hammer would be pushed back to the cocked position, but then would follow the bolt back. A shell will cycle, but the hammer would not be cocked, so obviously pulling the trigger would not result in a bang.

If that is not the case, it may be an improperly fitted shell stop. I had to have that repaired on my King Ferry DSII. With that problem, I could get it to fire if after a new shell was chambered, I kept rearward tension on the slide while firing... not very conducive to accurate shooting.

Copper BB
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 02, 2011 2:58 pm
Hi there, I am new to Ithaca and to this forum.

I just ordered my first Ithaca 37 from Ohio and all i can say is WOW...what a quality - Balance - TRIGGER is amazing (never seen one on shotgun out of box). I have a lot of shotguns but never seen that kind of quality in a repeater other than a Auto-5!!

I didn't know they still exists :)

It is weird that I am starting my post in the troubleshooting thread but I promise that i will follow up with a lot of good stories on my Ithaca.

So, I came across some sites and was reading about these guns and found someone who mentioned an "issue" that he had with his gun and want to inquiry about it - just so i can tell the IN and OUT and learn how to maintain and keep her in good shape.
this is his post:
<<
Only problem I have seen on high mileage 37's is set back in the locking area of the receiver. The rear of the bolt tips up into a recess in the top of the receiver. Over the years, this recess gets hammered bask a few thousands and pushed up a burr at the back of the recess. You can feel the burr from inside the receiver when open. I will smooth the area down with my Dremel so the burr does not catch the shell feeding up from the magazine. The worst I have seen was pounded so much that the slot for the extractor to run in the top of the receiver was narrowed and caused the extractor to bind and stop the action. Even then, the shotgun functioned fine after the area was re-dressed. The headspace had to be opened some but with modern ammunition that did not present a problem. I recommended that he shoot AA or some other solid head shell to prevent rim splits.
>>


From your experience, do you think this is an isolated issue or a common one if high volume shooting is involved. I am planning to use mine in the skeet and trap range (not just hunting) and i can easily put 200-300 rounds a week.

Why would the bolt slam/pound the receiver where the extractor slot is?
shouldn't the receiver be tough and not develop a burr or will be narrowed?
I can't believe that the shell pressure will develop such steel deformation - or it might?

Thanks

Copper BB
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2011 10:21 am
I had an ejection problem with my new 28 gauge and would like to report that Ithaca did an incredible job handling the problem. They were so diligent, showed great care and concern. They fixed the problem promptly and returned the gun in great working order. It is so nice to see a company that still cares about their customers even after the sale has been made. I think this generation of the Ithaca will offer us the great quality of the Ithaca of the past. I am the owner of 12 older model Ithacas and am so pleased with my 28 ga.
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2011 11:01 am
bhenderson312 wrote:I had an ejection problem with my new 28 gauge and would like to report that Ithaca did an incredible job handling the problem. They were so diligent, showed great care and concern. They fixed the problem promptly and returned the gun in great working order. It is so nice to see a company that still cares about their customers even after the sale has been made. I think this generation of the Ithaca will offer us the great quality of the Ithaca of the past. I am the owner of 12 older model Ithacas and am so pleased with my 28 ga.

Its great hearing reviews such as this! Thanks for sharing.

Copper BB
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Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:46 pm
PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2011 3:46 pm
Hello from Mauldin S.C.
I have my defensive model 37 back, and have put 100 rounds through it plus about 10 slugs, and have not had one jam, double feed, or two shells coming out at the same time. From my first post I told of all the problems I had. Each time I sent it back to Ithaca it came back right. They said it was a timing issue and it got fixed and the action is really smooth, better than before. I have many different types of guns but only shotgun, so it must stay up and running at all times because it is the main gun for defense, and the one that stays loaded. Thank you Zak for your help with my shotgun, now I can get back to work.

Copper BB
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Joined: Sat Nov 19, 2011 3:17 pm
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 3:47 pm
To Any Who Can Help,

Recently my father gave me a 12 gauge 37 featherlight shotgun it was manufactured in 58'. It is in great shape, that being said after cleaning it, i immediately tested it out and have had several problems with it. The first is that generally after firing a round the action is a lot stiffer than should normally be. And secondly a few times it has failed to extract altogether causing another round to jam behind it. Let me end by saying that my father has had a 16 gauge model 37 featherlight for 40 years and do have some experience with this type of firearm. I would really welcome any thoughts.

Copper BB
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Joined: Sun Nov 20, 2011 3:33 pm
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 3:44 pm
I am new to the forum this is my first post.

I have a model 37 that used to belong to mt Dad but he hardly ever used it and its in fine shape.

On the range the other weekend I had some jamming issues so I wanted to take it apart and give it a good clean/lube.

There are 5 screws and one goes all the way through - this "through-screw" will not come out. I unscrew it as far as it will go and then pull on it (gently) with a pliers - comes about 1/2way out and just stops. I watched a youtube disassembly video and in on this gone the same screw comes right out.

Any ideas appreciated.

Also would like to hear from "jaguarxk120" - my Dad also has a 1951 xk120 FHC that we are having restored.

Regards - Jack
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 5:21 pm
knockout wrote:Hello from Mauldin S.C.
I have my defensive model 37 back, and have put 100 rounds through it plus about 10 slugs, and have not had one jam, double feed, or two shells coming out at the same time. From my first post I told of all the problems I had. Each time I sent it back to Ithaca it came back right. They said it was a timing issue and it got fixed and the action is really smooth, better than before. I have many different types of guns but only shotgun, so it must stay up and running at all times because it is the main gun for defense, and the one that stays loaded. Thank you Zak for your help with my shotgun, now I can get back to work.

Thanks for reporting back to us with a great update!

.22LR
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Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2011 5:24 pm
Location: Peoples Republic of California
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 5:10 pm
woebgonewally wrote:To Any Who Can Help,

Recently my father gave me a 12 gauge 37 featherlight shotgun it was manufactured in 58'. It is in great shape, that being said after cleaning it, i immediately tested it out and have had several problems with it. The first is that generally after firing a round the action is a lot stiffer than should normally be. And secondly a few times it has failed to extract altogether causing another round to jam behind it. Let me end by saying that my father has had a 16 gauge model 37 featherlight for 40 years and do have some experience with this type of firearm. I would really welcome any thoughts.


What type of ammo were you using? Many people are having issues with the cheap steel cased ammo (not just Ithaca shotguns either). The Winchester Universial seems to be the worst offender, I call it craptactular ammo. The steel cased ammo is not as elastic as brass and it swells and sticks in the chamber. I've had this problem with both of my M37s. Switching to brass cased ammo solved the problem. I now only shoot Winchester AA or Federa Hi-Brass loads and I haven't had the issue since.

Copper BB
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Joined: Sat Nov 19, 2011 3:17 pm
PostPosted: Thu Dec 08, 2011 8:55 pm
I tried your suggestion and used Remington high brass and it was a hundred times worse, to the point where it jammed so hard i had to put a rod down the bore.

Copper BB
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Joined: Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:11 am
PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 10:52 am
Hey guys,

I recently received a 1948 16ga M37 Featherweight from a family member. It hadn't been fired for a number of years, but the action is still smooth and it really doesn't show its age. I took it to the range with some Winchester SuperX #8 game loads. It fired just fine, but more often than not it wouldn't extract the spent shell! I was able to slide the shell out of the barrel easily enough, so I know the casing wasn't expanding and getting stuck. Upon further inspection, I found that the brass (maybe steel) was blown out at the top and bottom extraction points, creating a ramp for the extractors to slide on instead of catching the lip.

Anyone seen this before? Cheap ammo? Worn springs? Thanks for any advice you can provide!

Shell_Issue1.jpg
Lower Extraction Point
Shell_Issue1.jpg (111.11 KiB) Viewed 16076 times
Shell_Issue2.jpg
Upper Extraction Point
Shell_Issue2.jpg (25.98 KiB) Viewed 16076 times

.410
Posts: 40
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 5:40 pm
jack08520 wrote:There are 5 screws and one goes all the way through - this "through-screw" will not come out. I unscrew it as far as it will go and then pull on it (gently) with a pliers - comes about 1/2way out and just stops. I watched a youtube disassembly video and in on this gone the same screw comes right out.

Any ideas appreciated.

Also would like to hear from "jaguarxk120" - my Dad also has a 1951 xk120 FHC that we are having restored.

Regards - Jack


Two of the screws are lock screws for the two screws that secures the shell lifter and allows it to pivot. The fifth screw goes through the trigger group, and you will not be able to remove it without removing the butt stock.

Copper BB
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Joined: Sun Nov 20, 2011 3:33 pm
PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 7:19 pm
I posted a question in November about a problem I was having disassembling my Model 37. There are 4 small screws and one larger "through screw". I was unable to remove the larger through-screw and was baffled when I saw a youtube video of someone disassembling the same gun and "pulling it right out." I finally broke down and took it to a shop near me that happens to have access to a knowledgeable gunsmith. He took a look at it and was able to remove the through-screw by first removing the stock (which held in place a tang of some kind). He showed me where the serial number was located and told me that mine is an "early model" and that removing the stock was a prerequisite. Watching him work was mind-blowing he had the entire thing broken down and reassembled in about 20min. And my about my original complaint about jamming at the range - he said "Its probably because you were using cheap ammo!" I just wanted to follow up on this and hopefully same someone else a headache.
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:39 pm
Thanks for the update and I am glad you were able to get it all figured out. Let us know how it shoots next time you get to the range.

Copper BB
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Joined: Sat Jan 14, 2012 11:13 am
PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2012 11:26 am
I have a model 3712 gauge from the 1960's. I am experiencing problems with ejecting spent remington shells. At times I literally have to slide the pump with two hands to get the shell to extract. I have had the gun apart completely, i cleaned all the parts and oiled them, thinking that was the problem, however the reults are the same. My next move is to try a different ammo such as federals. Has anyone else experienced this problem and remedied it by using a different ammo? Thank you
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.270 WIN
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2012 12:33 pm
I think I had ejecting problems with Remingtons when I first bought my ithaca...Not so extreme as you but somewhat similar. Mine shoots Federals just fine. Mine is also a model 37 made in the early 60's.

Copper BB
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Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2011 5:21 am
PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 6:32 pm
I have a Model 37 28 gauge purchased about a year ago. Has 1 problem and I was wondering if anyone knew what might cause it and if there is an easy fix for it.
It will occasionally drop the round in the magazine out on the ground as the fired round is ejected, seems to happen more with reloads but will do it once in a while with factory AA's also. The reloads are AA hulls and dimensionally they are almost exactly the same size as new.
Anyone have any idea's?
Thanks,
John

Copper BB
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 11:33 pm
PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2012 9:55 am
My guess is it's the shell stop or a timing issue. It should be an easy enough fix. Is this a new Ohio made 37? If so just send it to them if it's still under warranty or even if it's not. Otherwise take it to a good gunsmith. They should be able to fix it up for you.

P.S. I'm new to Ithaca guns myself and from what I understand this can sometimes be a common problem. But like I said it's an easily fixed problem.

Copper BB
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Joined: Fri Mar 16, 2012 7:27 am
PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 7:57 am
I have a 50's model 37, 12 ga that extracts shell, but wont eject. Using Federal ammo.
First time out with this gun but other folks were using same shells, different shotguns no problem.
Any ideas??
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 8:28 am
Well..let me suggest first clean the action good. And while you're insides are all apart, check the extractor. Is its tips worn out? Then the elevator. How does it look? Bent? Let us know those 2 things first and then we can go from there and further diagnose it...
ripjack13@mossbergowners.com
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 11:49 am
ripjack13 wrote:Well..let me suggest first clean the action good. And while you're insides are all apart, check the extractor. Is its tips worn out? Then the elevator. How does it look? Bent? Let us know those 2 things first and then we can go from there and further diagnose it...



Yep, good places to start. Also check the springs on the top and bottom extractors. They should allow for a little movement
--Jim

Copper BB
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2012 12:37 am
My shell stop is not retracting and allowing shells from the magazine to go into the chamber.. is there any easy fix.. .or any feedback please....
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2012 7:17 am
Howdy Don and welcome to the club. Can you glive a little more info on it? How old is it? What have you done to it? Have you tried anything in the above posts to remedy it?

Thanx. ;)
ripjack13@mossbergowners.com
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