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Thread: Poor man's Rook rifle

  1. #61
    Boolit Master
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    "Automatic single shot" ,,,, I bought a NEF 45-70 several years ago. First 2 shots it did the same thing ,recoiled ,poped open,ejected..... promptly took it in the house and started to troubleshoot. Factory 405 remingtons, almost new gun (the 2 boxes of shells that came with it were missing only about 8 rounds!) ,no aparent "gunsmithing". What I found was that the locking lug swings to engage the cut in the barrel lug. It was dragging on burrs and only engaging about 25%. It was enough to allow it to fire but if the gun was held solidly into the shoulder and left hand controled the recoil as much as possibile then the locking lug disengaged due to inertia as the gun stopped in recoil. I shot it again letting it recoil more freely and it did not open. Stoned the burrs off and all is good. Probably would have worn it but it was EXTREMELY disconcerting to have the gun open at the end of the recoil impulse. By he way I still have it,I really like it but will NEVER fire it off a benchrest. About 6# 45-70 is OK from field rests, sitting .standing ECT ,Cant imiagine having that thing come sailing back at me with a typical loose BR hold!
    As well as I like the NEF, it's just to big and "industrial" for a rook and rabbit rifle. I've looked far and wide for one I could afford. When I could afford it ,it just didn't "talk to me". I settled on the american version of an elegant small game centerfire from an early era. My 32-20 model 25 fits the bill bor me. I still watch for English single shots just in case cost and appeal coincide!
    Sorry for the long wandering post ,I'm a bit ADD

  2. #62
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    I think the role of the English Rook and Rabbit rifle was filled on this side of the Atlantic by the generic boys rifle in either .22, .25, or .32 rimfire. The main difference I can think of is the boys rifles almost universally looked like they were meant for boys just learning to shoot, and feed the family; while the rook rifles were centerfire and meant for a more upscale customer.

    Most of the American single shot rifles that were originally centerfire were big enough to accept rounds that were capable of legitimately hunting deer, not just small game. I mean just which is the classier rifle, a side lever Stevens Crackshot or the Tranter Little Monarch posted earlier in this thread? I know which one I would rather own.

    To put it in terms of today's deer rifles, the American version is the synthetic stocked Stevens Model 200 in .30-06, while the rook rifle is a Winchester Model 70 Super Grade. They will both kill any deer or elk, but which one is higher quality?

    Robert

  3. #63
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    Thanks for the headsup about the yldiz (sp?) guns, I'll have to check them out. I've already got a few folding 410's, but you don't start getting to having "a few" of something without there being a reason...
    Nozombies.com Practical Zombie Survival

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  4. #64
    Boolit Man WinMike's Avatar
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    "Most of the American single shot rifles that were originally centerfire were big enough to accept rounds that were capable of legitimately hunting deer, not just small game. I mean just which is the classier rifle, a side lever Stevens Crackshot or the Tranter Little Monarch posted earlier in this thread? I know which one I would rather own."

    Or, the path I took: at one time, in addition to the .38/.357 low wall referenced earlier, I owned Browning Low Walls in .22 Hornet, .223 Rem, .243 Win & .260 Rem. I've since sold all but the Hornet & the "traditional" .357, but all were universally well-made, very accurate, and a joy to shoot.

  5. #65
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    WnMike . I have the Trad hunter too ,mine's a 45LC ,looked for a 357 ,but the 45 kinda fell into my hands. Frind owns a gunshop and ordered it when they closed it out "just thinkin" that I would want it! Opened the box to show it too me and I bout broke my wrist getting to my wallet! I have considered rebarreling to something smaller many times. I use it like a tiny 45-70 ,gould HP and 296 for deer. The chamber is so BIG ,I can chamber a 45 case with a .460 bullet seated and it still rattles! Still a keeper.

    NoZombies , the baby 410 is a ball , the fit and finish is top quality, mine has shot probably 500 rounds of 2 1/2 reloads and a few boxes of 3 in. The little bugger kicks more than you would think! So light and just elegant. I'm a sucker for nice wood ,the plastic stuff has no apeal at all. It's an amazing valve at 120$ It's not a model 42 ,but still has it's own certain character. You know it seems that a lot of people are drawn to like interests. I run into your posts frequently on the .32 posts and now folding shotguns! If we should ever meet I'll buy you an adult beverage of you choice .

  6. #66
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by rking22 View Post
    NoZombies , the baby 410 is a ball , the fit and finish is top quality, mine has shot probably 500 rounds of 2 1/2 reloads and a few boxes of 3 in. The little bugger kicks more than you would think! So light and just elegant. I'm a sucker for nice wood ,the plastic stuff has no apeal at all. It's an amazing valve at 120$ It's not a model 42 ,but still has it's own certain character. You know it seems that a lot of people are drawn to like interests. I run into your posts frequently on the .32 posts and now folding shotguns! If we should ever meet I'll buy you an adult beverage of you choice .
    Thanks, I'll take you up on that!

    I've enjoyed all the discussion about the various "rook" rifles here guys, keep it up!
    Nozombies.com Practical Zombie Survival

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  7. #67
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    The .38 Special and .357 really are not 38's they are .36s. There were original rook rifles in that bore caliber.

    This is where the RB comes into play. The BC of a RB is so low especially in small calibers that the risk from shooting up into trees is not much different than shooting squirrels with 22 RF but at close range, inside 50 yards +/-) they are much more effective on game than a .22 LR.

    I shoot RB in an H&R and with good hits it does not leave cripples.

    What I would like to have is a gun with 9mm/.357 sized bore but short chambered for the .38 S&W (NOT 'Special') case. That would make for a gas tight fit with the common .360 RB and all the power needed in a "rook rifle". A slower than normal twist would probably help too, something between a 1:38 and 1:60. It should

    Even with a short 16.5 inch barrel it could achieve [maximum loads] 1800-2000 fps and 500-600 ft lbs at the muzzle and be a pussycat downrange. It would also be, I believe, very quiet shooting, no noisier than a .22 LR. The small case is also ideally suited for lighter loads with only a couple grains of fast powder

  8. #68
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    Many years ago H&R made small frame guns. I had a 'Bay State' .410 shotgun which I believe was made by H&R. It was as light and handi as the small Rossi single shots. I have a Rossi 22 LR/.410 combination. It is ideal for a walk around gun. I use it as a house gun for when the dogs wake me in the middle of the night to alert for an egg stealing critter outside.

    When the Rossi SS were first introduced I immediately ran to my gun dealer to order a rifle in each caliber [357, 44 Mag, 45 Colt]. Years later I never have had one. They must have been the shortest production run in history. I have lots of H&R but the frames are too large to be ideal for the small pistol calibers, at least for woods walking.

  9. #69
    Boolit Man WinMike's Avatar
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    "What I would like to have is a gun with 9mm/.357 sized bore but short chambered for the .38 S&W (NOT 'Special') case. That would make for a gas tight fit with the common .360 RB and all the power needed in a "rook rifle". A slower than normal twist would probably help too, something between a 1:38 and 1:60. It should

    Even with a short 16.5 inch barrel it could achieve [maximum loads] 1800-2000 fps and 500-600 ft lbs at the muzzle and be a pussycat downrange. It would also be, I believe, very quiet shooting, no noisier than a .22 LR. The small case is also ideally suited for lighter loads with only a couple grains of fast powder...."


    As you know, the 38 S&W has a slightly larger bullet & bore than the 38 Special/.357 Mag (bullets are .361" vs. .357"). A couple of years ago, a friend of mine had a Victory S&W revolver in 38 S&W, and after reloading the usual 140-160 gr. bullets, we decided to duplicate the Brit 380-200 cartridge, which originally was the 38 S&W with a 200 gr. cast bullet, and which the Brits claimed equaled the 455 Webley in use (not the first time military brass attempted to reassure the troops: "Don't worry, boys....just because it's cheaper to produce, it's just as effective as the larger cartridge/caliber...." )

    Anyway, we had so much fun with the 380-200, I decided to emulate the load in my 38 Specials, and I did so (I think I've touched on this subject in another post). The point is, compared to the 38 S&W, there are so many more bullet choices in 38/.357, either home or "store-bought" cast, and it's easy to duplicate 38 S&W velocities/performance.

    A loading with a 1800 fps muzzle velocity isn't going to be too quiet, though: when you exceed the speed of sound (1126 fps), you'll still get that loud "crack," but it would be easy to download....for example, I have some very low speed 38 Special wadcutters over a small Green Dot load (about 950 fps in my 4" revolver), and it's a fun, but quiet load. I should shoot it in my 24" barreled low wall and check it out.

  10. #70
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    I load my .357 H&R Handi with 148 HBWC's over 3 gr. Trailboss and it has about the same noise as a .22LR. No Chrony, but I suspect it is in the area of 700-800FPS MV.
    Jack D
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  11. #71
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    Here are some charge velocity data for .38 Special loads with Remington 148-grain hollowbased wadcutters, flush seated, with Remington 1-1/2 primers in Remington wadcutter brass, comparing velocities in my Colt 6" Officer's Model revolver and a rebored BSA-Martini Cadet with 25" barrel chambered in .357 Magnum:

    Alliant Bullseye_____Colt 6"_______BSA 25"

    2.4 grains_________635, 15Sd____787, 24 Sd

    2.6 grains_________668, 27Sd____806, 20 Sd

    2.8 grains_________716, 18 Sd____854, 19Sd

    3.0 grains_________758, 20Sd____908, 8Sd

    3.2 grains_________805, 15 Sd___969, 12Sd

    3.5 grains_________847, 28Sd___1014, 8 Sd

    Saeco #348, 146 grain DEWC
    3.5 grains Bullseye__873, 15Sd___1037, 13Sd

    Rem. Factory WC___741, 25Sd____906, 11Sd

    Win. Factory WC____767, 11Sd____918, 7Sd

  12. #72
    Boolit Master
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    I filled my need for a rook rifle six months ago by picking up a little German single shot- 26" octagon barrel, break open action, under lever functions as trigger guard, double set triggers, hammerless, weight: 4lbs. 12 ounces. Caliber: 5.6x35R (.22 Hornet with a .221" groove diameter). Cost: $100. My thoughts ran toward boring it out and chambering for .32 S&W Long. My mistake was to shoot the donor. It consistently groups 3 shots in an inch at 50 yards, with open sights. Load: 2gr. Bullseye and a Lyman 225438 45gr. bullet sized to .223", small pistol primers. I'm working on fitting a Weaver B6 6x 3/4" scope to it (because it just 'looks right' with that scope mounted low down on the barrel). All thoughts of making it a .32 Long have evaporated!

    The squirrels better lay low this fall!

  13. #73
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    Shooting the donor rifle has cost me more project rifles than lack of funds...

    Did you use a gas check with the 2.0 Bullseye load? I hope my Savage Model 219 will do that well.

    Robert

  14. #74
    Boolit Man WinMike's Avatar
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    gnoahhh: I filled my need for a rook rifle six months ago by picking up a little German single shot- 26" octagon barrel, break open action......

    Now that sounds interesting.....photos?

    Hornady makes a .222 flat nose bullet as well as a .223 Hornet bullet, in case you decide to go over to the dark side....!

  15. #75
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    For a thoroughly American rook-type rifle, consider getting your hands on a rifle in .32 Rimfire and having it converted to centerfire. "Uncle Jack" sells brass for .32 Long Colt that he makes from .32 S&W Starline brass. Accurate Molds has a couple of heeled bullet molds for the .32 LC and will make custom molds for the same price if you have something in mind. Dies were available from CH4D the last time I looked. Holy Black or Trailboss are powders to consider. I'm partial to this option. I've seen many Remington rollers and Stevens Favorites in .32 Rim in fine shooting condition go for reasonable prices. Hopkins & Allen, Ballard, Wesson, etc. are out there in .32 Rim too. Lots to choose from. I think you could do a real pipsqueak rifle from something like a Stevens sidelever Crackshot in .32 Rimfire Short, convert to CF, and shorten Uncle Jack's brass. Breach seating anyone? These little .32 RF rifles are a hoot to shoot, and some, like the Remington #6 so-called rolling block is very small, slender, and light. I have one in .22 RF that my grandson and I have fun with.

    Anyway, I think the .32 Rimfire rifles are worth a look if you're looking for a light, handy, quiet, reloadable, small cartridge rifle for small game and plinking. Just my cent-and-half's worth.

  16. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by WinMike View Post
    gnoahhh: I filled my need for a rook rifle six months ago by picking up a little German single shot- 26" octagon barrel, break open action......

    Now that sounds interesting.....photos?

    Hornady makes a .222 flat nose bullet as well as a .223 Hornet bullet, in case you decide to go over to the dark side....!
    I'm making a new butt stock for it and rust bluing it. When completed I'll post pics. Funny how a simple project takes on a life of its own...

    I actually tried some .22 Jet (.221) bullets, and I would blush if I told you how well they shot at 50yds. Since the goal was a low velocity lead bullet gun, they sort of defeated the purpose. After all, we are "booliteers", no?

    Yes, Robert, the 225438's were GC'ed. I was too lazy to set up the chronograph, but they did 'crack' like a .22WRM. (How's that for scientific?!)

  17. #77
    Boolit Master pietro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kermit1945 View Post

    For a thoroughly American rook-type rifle, consider getting your hands on a rifle in .32 Rimfire and having it converted to centerfire.
    "Uncle Jack" sells brass for .32 Long Colt that he makes from .32 S&W Starline brass.
    Accurate Molds has a couple of heeled bullet molds for the .32 LC and will make custom molds for the same price if you have something in mind.
    I've seen many Remington rollers and Stevens Favorites in .32 Rim in fine shooting condition go for reasonable prices. Lots to choose from.
    These little .32 RF rifles are a hoot to shoot, and some, like the Remington #6 so-called rolling block is very small, slender, and light.

    Anyway, I think the .32 Rimfire rifles are worth a look if you're looking for a light, handy, quiet, reloadable, small cartridge rifle for small game and plinking. Just my cent-and-half's worth.

    I quite agree - although I wouldn't do a Remington #6.

    I've personally converted a .32RF solid-frame (I wouldn't do a take-down) Remington #4 roller to .32 Short Colt via doing nothing besides drilling a central hole in the breechclock for a new FP tip, grinding off the RF firing pin tip & making a CF pin tip from the shank of the drilll bit used for the new FP hole.

    Commercial .32 Short Colt ammo is currently made by Winchester, for those who don't reload, BTW.



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  18. #78
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    Agreed, Pietro. I have a #6 in .22 RF, and Grandson and I only shoot standard velocity ammo in it. There's a difference between the #6 and the #6 "improved." I prefer the early model. They were made in .32 RF, but with idiots hotrodding things with smokeless, I'd not convert one to centerfire. Probably safe with the blank primed cases available from Dixie and others USING BLACK POWDER, but the Darwin Effect will maim some fools.

  19. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by gnoahhh View Post
    I'm making a new butt stock for it and rust bluing it. When completed I'll post pics. Funny how a simple project takes on a life of its own...

    I actually tried some .22 Jet (.221) bullets, and I would blush if I told you how well they shot at 50yds. Since the goal was a low velocity lead bullet gun, they sort of defeated the purpose. After all, we are "booliteers", no?

    Yes, Robert, the 225438's were GC'ed. I was too lazy to set up the chronograph, but they did 'crack' like a .22WRM. (How's that for scientific?!)
    Scientific enough for me, I just found two pounds of Bullseye, and have been thinking of how to use it. Let's see now, two pounds of powder at 2 grains per shot, means I need to buy a bunch of gaschecks. I think I will set up the chronograph just for grins.

    Robert

  20. #80
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    We have a 50's? era Stevens single shot 410. It also had a 30-30 barrel for it and then Dad had a 22 Jet barrel for it. The 410 barrel and 30-30 barrel are still around but the Jet barrel is mia. My brother may have it or something but Dad said the Jet barrel was really fun to play with for small game around the woods. And really economical to load for.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check