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Thread: Rem 700 Safety Problems

  1. #1

    Default Rem 700 Safety Problems

    Gun in question is a late 90's Remington 700 in 300 RUM. After this weekends hunt I unloaded the mag and double checked the empty chamber. When I turned the safety off the firing pin released. I am %100 certain I did not touch the trigger. I lifted the bolt and closed it, put the safety on, and turned the safety off and it fired again. This happened three times in a row.


    This happened once before, about five years ago, with the same gun. I turned it into a smith and they could not find the problem and it never happened again until tonight. Tomorrow I will be turning the gun into a differnt smith, but in the mean time I'm looking for possible causes of this problem.


    After a couple google searches there is documented cases of this occuring with Rem 700 actions, but no reasons why.

  2. #2
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    I would think that most Gunsmiths would know about it. It's my understanding that the Rem. 700s can exhibit this problem, (The cocked gun fires when the Safety is pushed off.) and it is due to a dirty trigger.


    Tis said that some people will oil the trigger mechanism, and that contributes to the problem.


    I've never had the problem, and most people don't, but when I heard about it, I had the triggers CLEANED, and adjusted by a Gunsmith, on two different Rem. 700s and I don't mess with them, no more.


    Some people replace with After Market triggers, and according to what I've read on INTERNET forums, there may be a cupla other fixes, which I don't fully understand.


    Smitty of the North
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  3. #3
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    The two causes are: dirt in the trigger and home gunsmithing.

    You can clean the trigger or install a Timney or Rifle Basix

  4. #4

    Default Oil

    Is there a chance you are getting oil in the trigger mechanism when cleaning your rifle? If you don't use a good bore guide this could be the case. You don't want any oil or lubricant in your trigger mechanism. Some guys clean their triggers with lighter fluid or something else that evaporates quickly. I would still take it to a good gunsmith even if the cleaning "fixes" the problem just to make sure. All my 700's wear Jewel triggers and this is how they recommend cleaning them, I believe it would hold true for the factory trigger also.
    "Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything."

  5. #5
    Moderator Paul H's Avatar
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    All safeties can fail in this method if the right amount of grit gets in the wrong place. Sometimes a swelled stock will cause the problem.

    I don't want to hijack the thread, but it is a chance to point out that carrying a rifle with an empty chamber is the safest way to go. The safety is always left off, a round is chambered when the gun is to be fired.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul H View Post
    All safeties can fail in this method if the right amount of grit gets in the wrong place. Sometimes a swelled stock will cause the problem.

    I don't want to hijack the thread, but it is a chance to point out that carrying a rifle with an empty chamber is the safest way to go. The safety is always left off, a round is chambered when the gun is to be fired.
    I agree.
    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.
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    Id also note that from a liability standpoint, as you now know you have a trigger problem, any accident that hopefully doesnt occurs will be, in whole or in part, your fault for not having it professionally fixed.

  8. #8

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    Paul that's great advice. I carry my big game rifles with an empty chamber, and slide one down the chamber when it's time to knock down a large animal. Carrying a firearm is not to be taken lightly and I'm cautious as to where my barrel is pointed at all times.


    Wildalaska, thanks for the posts. I did call you guys today, and another gunsmith as well. The "we'll get to it when we get to it" spiel during hunting season lead me in another direction.

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    Its hunting season for everybody

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    Member B-radford's Avatar
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    My bro (forum member Akpacer) has a Remington 700 .270 win mag and had the same problem. Remington told him that it had to do with the tollerences of the saftey mechanism and getting oil on the fireing pin. I guess its too close and when you put gun oil on it, it will fire off when you load a round and engage the safty. They told him the fix was to not put oil on it. If you send him a PM, io am sure he would be happy to chat with you about it.



    Paul,
    I agree with you 100%, all my family members think i am crazy for walking around in the woods without a round in my chamber, but after accidently being shot at by brother-in-law, i think the safest gun it the unloaded one and going home at the end of the day with out a hole in you is a great thing.

  11. #11
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    Remington has paid out a lot of money because of this little issue. I think it was worse when the 700 used two piece sears but it still isn't fixed unless the mechanism is kept squeaky clean. Oil should not be put on the cocking cam, (I don't think we need to oil the firing pin) a light grease is better as it doesn't run down onto the sear and stick it in place. The design is I believe the main problem with this firing mechanism but I wasn't consulted. The real problem from a safety stand point (if someone gets hurt) is failure of the handler to keep muzzle pointed in a safe direction otherwise it is a pain in the behind. I dislike the Remington lockwork with a vengence but there is no safety that can protect us and no mechanical gizmo should ever be trusted. And as you've heard, I believe in carrying with an empty chamber while hunting.
    Is there nothing so sacred on this earth that you aren't willing to kill or die for?



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    a light grease is better as it doesn't run down onto the sear and stick it in place.
    The older I get, the more I reject the advertising claims of the wonder lubes and return to those glorious days of my youth and dip a swab in lubriplate

    And as you've heard, I believe in carrying with an empty chamber while hunting.
    You wouldnt need to if you had a Blaser...perfectly safe with a round in the chamber

  13. #13
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    WG...

    Gary here.. I used to have the same rifle but never any problems with the trigger. Sure wish I can ever get it back after the break in a couple of years ago. Along with my 375 Rum. But did soon after getting the rifle I installed a Timney. That was one of the best things I could have ever done. Besides the WW break and glass bedding the action. I did the trigger, and had WW Gun do the break, sako extractor, and squared the action. Used to shoot 200 grain accubonds and cover with a dime at 100 yards. Have targets to show. But best thing is get the Timney and solve that problem. There is a reason as in lawyers is why Remingtons seem to come out of the box with 8 t0 10 lbs + trigger pull. I had my Timney set to 3.5 lbs.

  14. #14

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    If you adjust the trigger to light this will happen. Even in the old days in the early 70's I could create this problem with a Rem 700. I would then readjust the trigger not as light and give it the old 3 taps against the carpet. If it did not fire after three taps you were good to go. This is the way I adjust all my Rem triggers. Use this at your own risk but this is my method.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by coxhaus View Post
    If you adjust the trigger to light this will happen. Even in the old days in the early 70's I could create this problem with a Rem 700. I would then readjust the trigger not as light and give it the old 3 taps against the carpet. If it did not fire after three taps you were good to go. This is the way I adjust all my Rem triggers. Use this at your own risk but this is my method.
    What do you mean by three taps? Do you tap the butt plate against the carpet.

    I recently adjusted two 700 triggers (not the X Mark) After I adjusted them to I'm guessing about 1 1/2 lbs or so. I slammed the bolt numerous times and I tried numerous times to fire while the Safety was on. It tested out good.

    As was already mentioned, always keep your firing pin and trigger mechanism clean and free of oil, bore cleaners, etc.

    And always know where your muzzle is pointing. It doesn't matter whether you *think* you have one in the chamber or not. Treat it like you do.

  16. #16

    Default had the same problem...I think

    I may have been a victim of this. My buddy and I were stalking a big griz with my 700 in 300wsm. walking down this trail, me in front, clicked the safety off and immediately went boom. Muzzle in a safe direction so no harm except we probly scared off the bear. I chocked it up to fat fingers, or nervousness or something. I just knew I didn't have my finger on the trigger! Felt sick about it for a few days. trigger housing was pretty dirty. maybe this is what happened. I'm sure it rattled my hunting buddy's confidence. Now maybe I can sleep at night. Hasn't happed since and I've had lots of rounds through this gun. I make sure to keep it a little cleaner now though.

  17. #17
    Member gunbugs's Avatar
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    Default Here's the deal

    The remington trigger is really pretty simple, however the trigger itself is sandwiched between the two plates that make up the trigger housing. What typically happens is old oil and sometimes dirt migrate down beside the trigger. This will cause the trigger to remain in the "pulled" position if it is bumped to the rear during handling and this condition can be compounded by cold weather making the lube sluggish. The safety only locks the sear in the up position preventing the firing pin from falling, and does not lock the trigger forward. When on "safe" the trigger is free to travel to the rear, and if the trigger spring can not overcome old lube or dirt the trigger can stick to the rear in the "pulled" position. Take the safety off and the trigger is stuck to the rear, the safety drops the sear and the trigger is pulled out of the way and the gun will fire. If your gun does this test it by pushing your trigger forward when you cock it and it should keep the F.P. from falling. The other possibility is a badly adjusted trigger with insufficient sear engagement or the trigger return spring set up too light. A complete disassembly and cleaning is required to cure this as you can't get all the crud out by flushing or soaking. The new X-Mark pro trigger has eliminated this by locking the trigger forward when on safe. Hope this helps! I've had probably in excess of 100 rem triggers apart to clean and adjust. Good luck! (GUNBUGS)

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by MontanaRifleman View Post
    What do you mean by three taps? Do you tap the butt plate against the carpet.

    I recently adjusted two 700 triggers (not the X Mark) After I adjusted them to I'm guessing about 1 1/2 lbs or so. I slammed the bolt numerous times and I tried numerous times to fire while the Safety was on. It tested out good.

    As was already mentioned, always keep your firing pin and trigger mechanism clean and free of oil, bore cleaners, etc.

    And always know where your muzzle is pointing. It doesn't matter whether you *think* you have one in the chamber or not. Treat it like you do.
    I hold the upper stock and hit the carpet with the butt plate. I hit hard enough to make it fire but not trying to break it.
    Hear in Texas we do not have the extreme cold you do up there so old oil is not usually a problem. I am sure when I come up to Alaska I will come with dry triggers. Do you use graphite to lube the triggers in Alaska?

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by coxhaus View Post
    I hold the upper stock and hit the carpet with the butt plate. I hit hard enough to make it fire but not trying to break it.
    Hear in Texas we do not have the extreme cold you do up there so old oil is not usually a problem. I am sure when I come up to Alaska I will come with dry triggers. Do you use graphite to lube the triggers in Alaska?
    I'm not in AK but it gets cold here in MT. Shot a cow elk last year at -10. I use Birchwood Casey Gun Scrubber (not Bore Scrubber) to clean my trigger. I spray it several times liberally to flush it out and then let it dry. it dries without leaving a residue. Then I put some Microlon Gun Juice on it. It is a non petroleum lubricant and protector and dries without residue. IMO, the best way to go.

    -MR

  20. #20
    Premium Member MarineHawk's Avatar
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    The following question may be too philosophical, but I am genuinely interested in a response.

    Keep in mind that I have had a much beloved Remington 700 BDL in 300 Win Mag function very accurately, safely, and flawlessly since 1987. I love that rifel. My dad shoots it better than me and seriously commonly gets touching groups at 100 yd with it.


    But, if the safety on any rifle will fail (especially causing discharge)merely because it gets oil in it, isn't that a huge and unacceptable design flaw?


    I have never had a safety fail on any of the rifles I own, have owned, or used in the military. If the safety ever failed on any gun I owned, I would probably destroy (not sell) it that or the next day. Life's too short to mess around with guns that go off when a safety or trigger gets a little oil in it IMO.

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