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Undecided on Old Rifle

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by ZigZagZeke, Apr 27, 2014.

  1. ZigZagZeke

    ZigZagZeke Eugene Silver Supporter Silver Supporter 2015 Volunteer

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    I had this old Remington rolling block sporter restored a while back.

    RRBRestore-RtFullsm.jpg

    The gunsmith who did the metal work and I had a long discussion about what to chamber it for. Since it was originally a .38 rimfire, and I wanted to keep it as close to original configuration as possible my first thought was .38 SPC. Then I figured why stop there? Why not .357 Magnum then? So after a discussion about pressures, renewing the heat treating, and barrel liners, we decided to put a liner in the barrel and chamber it for .357 Magnum. Since I got it back from the gunsmith I'd shot nothing but .357 Magnum in it, and I chronoed it at 1800 fps muzzle velocity. It's pretty close to .30-30 ballistics with .357 Mag cartridges. So far it's shown no sign of any undue stress, but I still feel like it's pushing things a bit.

    I shot some .38 SPC in it for the first time yesterday, and it was like heaven. With .38 SPC it's like shooting a .22 LR, and it's very accurate. I like it so much with .38 SPC that I'm finally thinking about marking the barrel with the new caliber. I was hesitating to do that because the old mark is simply "38" on the bottom of the barrel, and X-ing that out and adding ".357 Mag" just didn't appeal to me. For one thing, I'm not certain the rifle won't wear out prematurely shooting .357 Mag. For another, I understand that this rifle is experimental and that I need to keep a sharp watch on it for signs of stress. It's built and spec'd to handle 150% of .357 Mag pressures, but that's 300% of .38 SPC pressures. But would the next owner understand these things? So I'm leaning toward marking it with a new "SPC" underneath the old "38" marking, and just letting it's .357 Mag chambering be my secret. What do you guys think?
     
  2. xlsbob

    xlsbob coos county Platinum Supporter Platinum Supporter

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    Since it's already been altered I would add the "spc" if it were mine. You have a cool old rifle brought back to life, 38's will make it last forever. I do lighter loads for all my old guns no matter what caliber they are.
     
    orygun and ZigZagZeke like this.
  3. orygun

    orygun West Linn Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I like to push things a bit, but I believe that you are correct in marking and shooting 38 Specials out of this rifle. However, you know that you'll pull the trigger on the occasional 357, and that's a big plus.
     
    ZigZagZeke likes this.
  4. BigBull 301

    BigBull 301 PDX almost Well-Known Member

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    Leave it as is.
     
  5. 20buellteam

    20buellteam Near van mall Member

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    Very nice rifle and a shooter too. Due to its age & original markings I would hesitate to add any extra caliber designation. I would definitely hang on to any documentation for the work you have had done.
     
    ZigZagZeke likes this.
  6. Certaindeaf

    Certaindeaf SE Portland Well-Known Member

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    Since that design was originally offered to include cartridges approaching the 30-06 in power, I see no reason to mismark it or not shoot .357 out of it.. nice gun. I hear you though about shooting .38.. accurate and fun!. and very easy on the "old" girl.
     
    ZigZagZeke likes this.
  7. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Nice rifle! No reason to beat it up with .357's. Enjoy shooting it!