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Thread: Rookie question about a new stock

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Default Rookie question about a new stock

    I just received a beautiful walnut monte carlo style stock for my old Russian MN. Yeah, I know some of you take issue with "bubba guns", (like I take issue with those who make pickups into cars), but still, I'm enjoying this project. The question is:
    Is it better to remove wood to free-float the barrel, or is it better to bed the barrel to raise it away from the wood? Never done this before. Would like your opinions and why you have them regarding this subject.

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    Default Free Float

    "Better" is a matter of opinion and individual experience but I like to free float the barrel when I first inlet and bed a rifle. I cut away the wood from the barrel channel including some channels on the bottom and sides and then carefully add several layers of heavy thick cellopane packaging tape before I finally glass bed the whole action and barrel channel. The glass in the barrel channel stiffens and waterproofs that portion of the stock. If it doesn't shoot you can add some shims at the tip and experiement with what works. If you bed the whole channel you have to go back and cut away the bedding and them it still may not shoot.

    Have fun with the Russian - it is a great learning experience. You will proably have more fun and enjoy that gun more than one you will ever buy ready built. Years ago we used to do the same with the '03 Springfields and 98 Mausers that are now very expensive. I still have my orginal 03-A3 I got new in the early 60s for $35 in a nice unfinished Herter's stock. I learned a lot from that rifle - I'm glad I never traded it off.

    Quote Originally Posted by sayak View Post
    I just received a beautiful walnut monte carlo style stock for my old Russian MN. Yeah, I know some of you take issue with "bubba guns", (like I take issue with those who make pickups into cars), but still, I'm enjoying this project. The question is:
    Is it better to remove wood to free-float the barrel, or is it better to bed the barrel to raise it away from the wood? Never done this before. Would like your opinions and why you have them regarding this subject.
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by sayak View Post
    The question is: Is it better to remove wood to free-float the barrel, or is it better to bed the barrel to raise it away from the wood? Never done this before. Would like your opinions and why you have them regarding this subject.
    The answer is yes. Too many variables to know for certain which manner of bedding will cause the absolute best accuracy in your particular rifle. I am confident that others will chime in soon, but IME some rifles respond well to some type of pressure bedding of the barrel, but most shoot better free-floated. I prefer to free-float a barrel for hunting. A sling has no effect upon it if free-floated properly. The stability of the wood (swelling/shrinking) is of less concern since it does not bear on the barrel. I will add that properly bedded either way, the gun should shoot almost as well as it can. Poor bedding can create some weird happenings in rifles, but bedding done correctly should produce a good shooting rifle. It may respond better to pressure bedding or free-floating, but if you are getting 8 MOA groups with one (properly done) then simply changing the bedding is not going to produce .5 MOA groups. Many find significant gains in free-floating their rifles, but I suspect that this improvement is usually due to poor/inconsistent pressure bedding rather than the style of bedding itself.

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    Default Thanks TV

    I'm actually keeping the original stock intact in case I want to restore it. The barrel will remain long. The elevation sight has been changed to the MOJO system, which still looks fairly authentic. I don't like the way they mount scopes on the MNs, so I may bypass that entirely and keep it iron.

    OK, so I have TV's opinion to both remove wood and bed it; others?

    And BTW, why do they call it "glass bedding", when there is no fiberglass involved? Is it just because of the poly resin?

    I Cor.- didn't see your post as I typed. Gotta start another class!

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    Default Glass bedding

    The orginal glass bedding stuff had short stranded glass fibers in a two part epoxy base - I guess all the current stuff still does although some use metal fillers also. Some people use glass fabric in the barrel channel to stiffen it up if you have a large forearm and can fit it in O.K. - I've use glass fabric on a few forearms and it worked out well


    Quote Originally Posted by sayak View Post
    I'm actually keeping the original stock intact in case I want to restore it. The barrel will remain long. The elevation sight has been changed to the MOJO system, which still looks fairly authentic. I don't like the way they mount scopes on the MNs, so I may bypass that entirely and keep it iron.

    OK, so I have TV's opinion to both remove wood and bed it; others?

    And BTW, why do they call it "glass bedding", when there is no fiberglass involved? Is it just because of the poly resin?

    I Cor.- didn't see your post as I typed. Gotta start another class!
    Living the urban lifestyle so I can pay my way and for my family's needs, and support my country. And you?
    ".. ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" JFK

  6. #6

    Default A question

    If you are going to "sporterize" the rifle, then why are you going to leave the barrel 29" long with the crude original sights, short awkward bolt handle and terrible mushy trigger? That gun, with just a modern stock will look pretty hokey. My opinion, and that's all it is, would be to leave it all original unless you're going to fully customize the rifle, which, to me, is not worth it on that gun. I fully remade a Finnish capture gun, cutting the barrel, changing to a scout scope set-up and doing a changeover on the bolt handle, cutting a notch in the rear of the receiver and welding a longer bolt handle on in a further rearward position matching the new notch for better leverage. I also replaced the trigger with a "roller" type trigger that helped some. The safety is a no-brainer, meaning whoever thought it up had no brain. if I had it to do over again, I wouldn't. It shot pretty accurately, as most of them do.
    As was stated earlier, the best way to bed it is to "oversize" the barrel channel, then put several strips of duct tape on the barrel to leave free space after bedding. Start the tape at the front of the chamber section of the barrel;. i normally leave a 1" wide section of the barrel free of tape about 2" back from the front of the barrel channel, then attach a 2 pound weight hanging from the front sling swivel, so that once the resin is set, and the weight removed, there will be a consistent 2 pounds of pressure on the barrel and it also helps center the barrel in the channel. Use plenty of release agent, plenty.

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Well, thanks for the replies gentlemen

    Quote Originally Posted by mauserboy View Post
    If you are going to "sporterize" the rifle, then why are you going to leave the barrel 29" long with the crude original sights, short awkward bolt handle and terrible mushy trigger? That gun, with just a modern stock will look pretty hokey. My opinion, and that's all it is, would be to leave it all original unless you're going to fully customize the rifle, which, to me, is not worth it on that gun. I fully remade a Finnish capture gun, cutting the barrel, changing to a scout scope set-up and doing a changeover on the bolt handle, cutting a notch in the rear of the receiver and welding a longer bolt handle on in a further rearward position matching the new notch for better leverage. I also replaced the trigger with a "roller" type trigger that helped some. The safety is a no-brainer, meaning whoever thought it up had no brain. if I had it to do over again, I wouldn't. It shot pretty accurately, as most of them do.
    As was stated earlier, the best way to bed it is to "oversize" the barrel channel, then put several strips of duct tape on the barrel to leave free space after bedding. Start the tape at the front of the chamber section of the barrel;. i normally leave a 1" wide section of the barrel free of tape about 2" back from the front of the barrel channel, then attach a 2 pound weight hanging from the front sling swivel, so that once the resin is set, and the weight removed, there will be a consistent 2 pounds of pressure on the barrel and it also helps center the barrel in the channel. Use plenty of release agent, plenty.
    Why am I doing it? Why not? Why do people build hot rods? Why do they remodel old houses? It's a project, and I'm having fun with it.

    Yes, the barrel will remain long, but the sights are being changed out. The bolt will get the treatment for both the down swept lever and the loop safety, which I can get redone as a package. As for looking "hokey", I guess that is more of an opinion thing, right? I have no problem with the trigger as is, but (though I've been hunting and shooting all of my adult life- I'm 54) I sure don't claim to be an expert, just an enthusiast.

    I have decided to just bed the action, and have removed enough wood to have a business card thickness between barrel and wood all the way back. I am using a non-oil based stain, and a lacquer finish, so, should I decide to bed more metal later, it should stick.

    So I'll see how it goes. I have other rifles for hunting; this one is just for fun.

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