Home Paintguns Pumps The Process of Restoring a Neglected Buzzard

The Process of Restoring a Neglected Buzzard

Here’s a Cobalt Blue Carter Machine Buzzard I purchased a few months back off ebay (the Rat Attack 12 gram drop out was added by me).  This pump was purchased from a seller in New Jersey so it was likely originally sold through ABC Paintball, which was a dealer for Carter Machine items in the mid 90s. I’d date this Buzzard between 1993 and 1995.

Pre Restoration Cobalt Carter Machine Buzzard with back bottle Rat Attack Changer.
Pre Restoration Cobalt Carter Machine Buzzard with back bottle Rat Attack Changer.

Looking at the initial photos when I purchased this paintgun, I could tell it was in rough shape and that the internal bolt and hammer, along with external steel pieces such as screws were rusted up and possibly fused together. But since these hardened steel internal parts are contained in the stainless body snub it could likely be cleaned up and easily turned into another reliable stock class loaner.

Left side of Cobalt Carter Machine Buzzard.
Left side of Cobalt Carter Machine Buzzard.

After receiving the Buzzard in the mail, my fears were confirmed with the internals looking rusted solid.
The rest of the stock class pump looked okay overall though.
The trigger slide plate is similar to Check It Products Super Stock frames but the frame has sides that are more rounded, the hump is more exaggerated and the frame’s trigger guard area is not as thick.  The trigger plate has three perpendicular holes in the trigger (instead of the CIP’s two slots) and a slightly different front angle. 

Check It Products (CIP) Super Stock product photo scanned from the December 1995 Issue of Action Pursuit Games.
Check It Products (CIP) Super Stock product photo scanned from the December 1995 Issue of Action Pursuit Games.

I personally prefer swing triggers on buzzards and slide triggers on Ducks, Redux and Box Guns  since the aluminum parts can wear from contact with the steel hammer sear but upon disassembly the top of the trigger wasn’t too worn.

The bottomline holes were also a larger size that is different from classic 1.25 inch 10×32 spacing or modern .75 inch 10×32 spacing.  I’ve found this spacing on several Carters and Line SI Bushmasters from the early 90s.

Full Blown Grip panel close up to show the detail.
Full Blown Grip panel close up to show the detail and larger bottomline screws.

I saw Robert Ferguson, of Full Blown Products (grips), at SC Village Tet Offensive and he confirmed the grips were Full Blown Grip 45 panels.

The barrel is Taso thread, which means it’s not compatible with Autococker barrels unfortunately. I do have several Taso barrels cut for sizers though so not a big deal.

While in Northern California last month, in August 2015, I broke this Buzzard down and found a set up suitable internals for replacement.  I knocked out the sear of the original hammer and ground a ranger sear to work to keep the spare with the rusted internals to repair at a later date. The video above show the process for grinding a ranger sear that is attached to a ranger hammer.  In the case of this Buzzards replacement sear I knocked both sears out and marked the cuts on the ranger sear before grinding.

Despite the extremely rusted up internals I still wanted the internal brass adjuster (Carter Machine TPC) to use in a replacement set.  Internals are exactly plentiful but I have extras.  I don’t have extra brass adjusters though. I also wanted to salvage the aluminum valve retaining screw.  

So I soaked the original internals in Ed’s Red solvent and after a few days could remove the brass adjuster.  And with a light hammer taps, the aluminum valve retaining screw could be pulled off the power tube.

In a later articles I’ll post restored images of this Buzzard.  It doesn’t look too different, just the internals are shiny since I replaced them with a stainless set, and the Full Blown Panels have been replaced with Hogue grips since I’ll be using this gun as a rental and don’t want to risk someone breaking them.

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