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Thread: Remington 721 sporterizing project

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    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    Default Remington 721 sporterizing project

    Ok, so I have a 1955 721 300 H&H, all original wood ect.... It shoots great! Really it does, 168g TSX rounds do great in it.

    It was grandpa's first iron but I'd love to hunt AK with it. I'd like it as a light weight long range mountain gun set up. (no more than 600yrds)

    Should I have the barrel turned to lighten it or would I be better off going with a new stainless barrel?
    Would a new trigger be necessary?
    I know I'd like a light weight custom stock.

    Can this bolt be spiral fluted?

    Would it be helpful to Parkerize or use some other kind of coating on the all steel action?

    What gunsmith would take on a project like this?

    I'm thinking about doing this one in 2012. I know it might be wiser or cheaper to buy new but it was grandpa's and I'd like to keep it in service.

    Please feel to educate me. This is the first time I've ever worked on a project like this. Another thing I considered is the 300 H&H AI round. I handload and recall seeing it somewhere.

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    I dunno, but aren't those a little rare?

    Maybe, you should keep the way it IS.

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

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    Member gunbugs's Avatar
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    You will pour hundreds and hundreds of dollars into this rifle only to make it something it was never intended to be. Anything you do to "customize" it may reduce its reliability and accuracy. Your grandkids will appreciate it if you leave it the way your grandpa had it, instead of cutting it up. It already IS a "sporting" rifle. That being said, it's your gun, do what you want. (Heavy sigh).
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind."

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    I love to modify/sporterize rifles, but I have to agree with Smitty about the rarity. Plus, if that rifle had been my grand daddy's I would surely not change it. I would be reluctant to remove one bit of sweat impregnated wood. But then we all have opinions.

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    Member The Kid's Avatar
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    Please don't do it Bighorse. Those guns are pretty darn hard to find these days, not worth a ton but very cool. Besides, as hardcore of a mountain hunter as you are, I know I've read your stories you must be in good shape, surely Grandad would be laughing you for saying his rifle is too heavy. Hunt that sucker just like Grandad did back in the day, if you scratch it up a little just think of it as carrying on a family tradition.

    I did a hunt this year with all oldschool gear, lever action Winchester with irons, wool, canvas, leather, no goretex, stainless or synthetic allowed. We didn't shoot the biggest bucks on the hill, but it was definatly one of the funnest hunts I've done in a while. Maybe you'd get a kick out of using it like that.

    It's your gun, but I won't be cutting up my Grandad's 721 if it ever gets passed to me.

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    I gave my Dad's 721 300 H&H to my oldest son with the stipulation to leave it original or give it back to me. It's still original in and is still in his hands. #2 son wished he could have one just like it and I found one about 5 years ago for him. So now they both have original 721's and proud to have them.

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    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    Oh, i've used it without reservation. Besides the range time it's been the end of a few nice animals. Ok, I hear what your saying. Just appreciate it for what it is. I know it would cost me a fortune to redo it and it wouldn't be anything like what currently sits in the case.

    So what I've heard so far is my money is better spent on a mountain rifle and just leave this one alone.

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    Member Yellowknife's Avatar
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    Hey Bighorse, I've got exactly the same gun, also passed down from my Grandpa. He bought it from a Navy PX just before moving to Alaska in the early 50's. I've considered doing the same thing you are, for the same reasons. Just want to keep it in service and the barrel is about gone. However, I came the the same conclusion as the Kid and Gunbugs...

    Here it is on the sheep mountain this year:



    And again in some unnamed Alaska Range valley:



    I did trade the stock out for a 700 version for a better fit and lighter weight. The original had been broken when a moose fell on it in the 60's sometime. The replacement was typical late 60's era roll over style. Could have made about half a cord of wood from it! I've still got that one and will swap it back when I permanently retire it.

    Yk

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    My Grandad has been packing a 721 up the mountains since the mid fifties or so, bought it at the base pawn shop in Ft Lenard Wood while serving there, if I remember the story right. His is an 06 and in all my years of hunting with him I've never heard it bark twice when game was in front of him, heck I'm not sure if it even feeds. He'll be eighty next spring, and as far as I know the old 721 will be following him up the mountain with an elk tag in his pocket once again.

    Seeing Yellowkinfes pics and reading about Bighorses rifle is sure bringing back the memories, all of em good ones.

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    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    That's a different triggergaurd and floor plate too eh? Did you have to do that with the stock exchange?

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    Member Yellowknife's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bighorse View Post
    That's a different triggergaurd and floor plate too eh? Did you have to do that with the stock exchange?
    Good eye

    Yeah, to use a BDL stock you have to use a BDL floorplate and mag box. That one came out of the parts bin at a local gunsmith. I still have the original squirreled away.

    Yk

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    Member alaskabliss's Avatar
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    I also have a 721 from my grand dad. Its pretty cool so many people have that model from there grandfather.
    I have the 300 H&H rechambered to the Weatherby. I guess this was very popular to do back in the day. I broke the stock on a hunt in Tok so replaced it with a Bell & Carlson stock and new floor plate and magazine box. This rifle still shoot very well, exept the kick is brutal. The only thing I would suggest to cahnge would be the trigger and safety. The original is sketchy but I do hear some smiths can do wonders with them.

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    Member GD Yankee's Avatar
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    I guess if I had a gun with that kind of family history, I'd do the minimum possible. If you wanted to weather-proof it you could refinish the stock with an epoxy finish like Brownells Accraglass and then have the metal Cerakoted in one of their fine-grained black finishes which look like a matte blue. Send the bolt to one of the teflon or NP3/nitride finish places. You'd make it SE Alaska ready without changing the character of the original gun too far.

    Beautiful gun, Yellowknife!

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    Don't worry about a non-stainless action, so long as a little bloom here and there doesn't bug you.

    Any stock that fits a LA rem 700 should fit, with a modification where the bolt notch is. If you're handy, consider a new Bansner / High tech specialties stock. They might have a bolt inlet for a 721, but you'll have to do bedding (gray marine tex), filling of minor holes in the finish (gray marine tex), cutting to length and fitting a recoil pad (electrical tape, chop saw with new-ish fine tooth carbide blade, epoxy, limbsaver, sanding wheel on 4.5" angle grinder). None of that is hard.

    Or an original Remington TI stock should fit with some modification ofthe bolt notch.

    I'd change over to ADL configuration. Get a new triggerguard from PT&D. This will save weight.

    You can trim the rig down to less than 8# this way as is. If you want lighter, send the barreled action to IT&D and rebarrel with a stainless douglas in the magnum-boltface chambering of your choosing. Run as thin a contour as you want, as long as you want, and don't listen to anyone who says skinny barrels don't shoot. I'd go with a 24" #1 contour 7mm remington with a longer-than-normal throat - send them a dummy round with a good bullet (160 accubond) seated where you want it (out so that base of bullet is just below neck-shoulder juncture). If you must keep it 300 H&H, make the barrel a 25".

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    there are some mighty coool posts on this one ... IF I were lucky enough to get something like that handed down to me I would leave it as I received it and think about "stuff" every time I sat rubbing the stock in front of the woodstove remembering ....... besides, there are so many lightweight mountain rifles showing up these days that you would be "chasing your tail" anyways

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    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    Thanks Vek!

    What about the bulge on the barrel for the front sight, will that also fit into the Rem 700 LA stocks?

    Whats PT&D?

    Can a gunsmith or I safely remove the front sight ramp from the barrel?

  17. #17
    Member Yellowknife's Avatar
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    You just have to carve out a little spot for that barrel bulge. I think I used a small sharp chisel. Not a big deal. Since the .300 has a heavier barrel contour than most 700's, you may have to open the barrel channel up a touch with sandpaper.

    I think that Vek meant PT&G. They make various 700 parts, including a nice aluminum ADL trigger guard. I just got one last week from midway.

    http://www.pacifictoolandgauge.com/p.../remington.htm

    Yk

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    Yep, you'll have to hog out the bulge. If you feel completely colorectal about the fit of the barrel channel in a synthetic stock that you are modifying to fit, you can do the following after free floating the barrel and bedding the action:

    1. Relieve the barrel channel until it clears the barrel completely with the entire barrel wearing 2 layers of electrical tape. Don't go crazy, particularly with a sporter contour in a rem TI stock.
    2. Coat the electrical tape on the barrel with hornady one shot case lube or johnson's paste wax.
    3. Mix up some lightweight body filler (AKA Bondo), carefully apply it to the barrel channel in such a way and quantity that it won't be forced into your action bedding
    4. Install the barreled action into the stock, and carefully daub off the excess bondo with a popsicle stick or similar
    5. Wait a day, pull the action, and carefully sand down the excess bondo to where it looks sharp.
    6. Paint stock, install barreled action with tape removed, and check fit. You'll have to hog things out and redo if you let bondo wander into your action bedding. Be real careful - you can always go back and spot-apply bondo in gaps left because of your caution.

    A 24" or 25" #1 contour barreled 721 wearing a TI stock, talley lightweights, and a 6x36 leupold should go about 7#. I have a 700 with a rem mountain rifle 30-06 barrel (skinny like a #1 contour), 22" long, setup the same except I replaced the recoil pad with one made from a shower shoe. It goes just under 6# 9oz. You'll need the #1 contour as it has more beef at the shank for holding a bigger chambering than an -06 class chambering. Very minor weight penalty - the barrel thickness at the muzzle will be the same or close to the rem MR contour.

  19. #19
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    The front ramp should be silver soldered on the barrel on your rifle Bighorse. It can be removed but the heat needed to melt the solder will ruin the finish on the last few inches of the bbl, best to leave it in place unless you are refinishing the gun. Besides, it will look funny with the rear sight "donut" that you can't get rid of and no front sight. If you decide to remove it yourself you will need a acetylene torch, propane won't do it.

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    Member gunbugs's Avatar
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    Well, I tried to save the puppy from the pound, But they killed it anyway.....oh well.
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind."

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