The firing pin extension should be under spring tension when reinstalling the cocking piece
Bracing the cocking piece
on the bench, grip the mainspring firmly and pull back slightly to reduce force on the striker, then pivot the striker off the circular head of the firing pin assembly.
"The Safety Catch is so constructed that when turned to the front, showing 'Safe,' it causes the Cocking Piece
to be drawn to the rear from contact with the Sear and locks the action in a safe position.
Remington continued to refine the Lee rifle and by 1885 a new design appeared with a bolt featuring a separate, non-rotating head while the cocking piece
was enlarged and checkered so as to make it easier to put the rifle on "safe." The Navy was impressed and placed an order for 1,650 of the Remington-Lee Magazine Navy Rifle, Model 1885.
Check the bolt after clearing the rifle, confirming that the bolt head is completely screwed into the bolt and the cocking piece
is properly lined up with the lug in the underside.
A large flange on the cocking piece
covers the left lug raceway in the receiver to deflect escaping gas away from the shooter.
The cocking piece
pin must never bottom out in the bolt body notch when the firing pin is at rest in the fired position.
As for the small-ring cock-on-opening kits, Dayton-Traister still offers them for $82.95 and the kit includes their Mk II trigger as well as cocking piece
and striker spring.
There also may be a hysteresis factor where spring bind or cocking piece
friction is present.
An ovoid, knurled knob was placed at the rear of the cocking piece
. The safety was a small lever/button on the left rear of the bolt.
What's happening is the cocking piece
on the bolt is moving forward when the trigger is pulled even though the safety is engaged.
Carefully turn the cocking piece
until it comes off.