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Thread: barrel-garand class

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
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    barrel-garand class

    garand class


    First if I had lots of money I would not be here asking questions.
    I purchased a barrel and it was supposed to be good used, post war army issue that I would not have to headspace but it's not. It's blued, no markings and 6 ridges has been mounted but does not look to be shot much,. thoughts on barrel.


    I place I live is a geographical oddity, one gunsmith want 75.00 to mount a barrel but can't get to it until the second coming and the other wants 200.00.. so


    Torque needed to tighten barrel 20 degrees?
    average torque for action?
    Can old barrel be cut down (0.5"+ )and recrowned with any worthwhile success?
    Barrel clamp- I have to build a barrel clamp, thoughts ideas ??/
    wood guy suggested white maple for clamp
    other than marring the surface, could clamp pictured bend/stress barrel?








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  2. #2
    Boolit Master

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    The big issue is usually loosening the barrels. Tourqing a properly fit barrel isn't near as hard. The barrel needs to be timed up, as these were gaged threads if the barrel has been on one its probably pretty darn close already. Cutting 1/2" off sounds good but then the op rod needs to be shortened 1/2" along with the stock or front handguard. Along with rechambering and the breech ends forms, then recatching the square threads and cutting them the 1/2" deeper. A lot of work. A simple barrel vise can be made from 2 heavy bars of steel and hard wood blocks or even better aluminum block split. One Bar 1 1/2 thick X 2" wide X 8" long for the base, One bar the same 1 1/2" X2" X 6" long for the upper. Drill 4 holes in the lower 2 3/4 clearance holes to bolt to bench and inside these 2 3/4" 10 tapped holes to clear outer holes and heads. ( I usually put a prick punch in the center and use a divider set to mark 3/4" in from each edge) In the upper drill 2 clearance holes 3/4" to match the tapped holes. Cut 2 pieces of 3/4 10 ready rod 10" long and 2 nuts and flat washers this makes the vise. The barrel blocks are 3" X 3" X 2" hardwood or aluminum with a hole drilled .002-.005 under the barrels dia. and split in half. In use set the barrel in the blocks and clamp tight between the bars of the vise. A little rosin or grit can be used to improve grip. Leave receiver over hang edge of bench so wrench can turn full rotation if needed. I use a level on the front sight flat to set barrel in on "time" The a level on the rear sight mount to time receiver to the barrel. when both read dead level you are timed up.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master lonewelder's Avatar
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    you can find answers for all your questions at the cmp (civilian marksmenship program).You can cut the barrel a little and recrown.I would use an action whrench in a vice and spin the barrel on with a barrel whrench.Also you may,prob have to buy several different bolts to get it to head space.If it has been finsh reemed it was done with another bolt and action.You cant just slap any bolt in it and have it head space..Along with head space guages.But if it has never been reemed you can rent a reamer and head space with your bolt.Ask around on the cmp site.There may be somebody close to you who can help you out.Its not a hard job if you have the tools.But if you have to buy them you could always resell the later.I dont think the device you have there is going to work very well.I would find out the muzzle erosion before i went any further.cmp is your best bet for help and information.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

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    I'll try to help to the extent I am able -- I can't answer all your questions.

    I have re-barreled several M1 rifles, but only a couple of them with used barrels. For me, it did work out; they turned up to TDC and the headspace was bottom end of good, but good nonetheless. I much prefer to use a new short chambered barrel and get great headspace using a pull through chamber reamer and a "go" gauge. If you can reverse your purchase of the used barrel and go the route I just described, I'd recommend following that course of action.

    There are many barrel vises available, both made to be such and improvised. I have a shop press with a 20 ton hydraulic jack, and use is for barrel removal/installation by clamping the barrel blocks between the pressure points of the press. I use aluminum blocks or collet-type sleeves purchased from Brownell's -- unless I'm working on an unusual barrel when they are readily made. Wood blocks (must be a hardwood) will work.
    Rosin on the barrel helps the sleeves or blocks to grab will and not slip and mar the barrel's finish. Your pictured set-up might work, but unless you devise a way to keep the chain from marring the barrel I wouldn't use it, and in any event would prefer some other vise.

    Most gunsmiths I have met over the years, myself, and the gunsmithing school I attended taught to clamp the barrel and screw the receiver on and off the barrel. Some few do it the other way with varying degrees of success and craftsmanship.

    I can not give you a torque figure for turning the receiver onto the barrel (assuming that you would use that approach). The barrel for an M1 is machined with the gas port and front sight pre located, and therefore the barrel must be turned up to TDC, unlike a round, sightless barrel blank as one might mount on a bolt action receiver. So, TDC is what you must achieve and how much torque is secondary and not too important. If you go past TDC you've got another kind of problem, so care and frequent checking is a "must". I determine TDC two ways, both visual, by using parallel bars positioned across the rear of the top of the receiver on the flat behind the rear sight mount, the second across the front sight dovetail, viewing from behind and making sure that one bar seems to exactly sit on top of the other. Another way is to take great care in the set up and use a bubble level gauge. Both systems can be used together for insurance. TDC is also important because the gas port has to be in the correct location to discharge recoil gas into the gas cylinder. In any event, it is important to have a properly fitting action wrench, preferably one designed specifically for the M1, although others can be adapted with top blocks or inserts to work satisfactorily.

    M1 barrels can be successfully cut and crowned. A half inch is quite a bit, and I've never done more than perhaps 1/4 of an inch, but in theory they could be cut back flush to the gas cylinder lock screw--but would look mighty peculiar.

    I am wondering how you know that your used barrel won't headspace properly if you haven't already installed it, checked the headspace, and then removed the barrel again. Just trying to read between the lines, if you are wondering about the torque for 20 degrees then you must have come up that short of TDC, and perhaps if it was at TDC you would have satisfactory headspace. If it resulted in insufficient headspace (very unlikely) then reaming the chamber a little would get you there.

    If you need to know more specifics you can post additional questions or PM me. All in all, M1s are among the easier rifles to re-barrel.
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  5. #5
    Boolit Master Moleman-'s Avatar
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    Invest or beg/borrow a set of head space gauges and some elbow grease. You can make an action wrench pretty easy. Basically you want the clamping force on the receiver to be top and bottom. Do not allow it to clamp on the oprod guide on the right hand side of the receiver. I've seen some receivers at a gun show that were bent there because of that. There's a M14 demill section in my wrench in the picture. Top to bottom a M14 receiver stub is shorter than an M1 and I usually just put a 1/4" spacer in there to keep the oprod rail off of the wrench. I made that wrench before I got a mill with a welder, hacksaw, angle grinder, files, drill and taps from scrap. If the barrel is GI profile you can use a cheap $10-$15 set of aluminum ar15 barrel blocks to hold the barrel in a sturdy vise. The GI profile has a lightening cut for the handguard which gives you two nice wide flat spots for the barrel blocks to grab. If it is a match profile you can also make the barrel vises towards the back with a drill press and saw. You have to get pretty close with the ID of the barrel hole in the vise blocks for them to grab, and use fine threads for the bolts. I put quite a few Garands together back when nice kits were $80-$120. You can use several different methods to get the barrel to TDC, but after getting it close with a set of parallels I use a method similar to leveling the legs on a chair or table. With the rear sight removed, and the front sight installed, flip it upside down on the kitchen counter or other flat surface (I use the flats on a lathe ways) and see if it rocks back and forth with 3 points of contact or acts like just two. Then just strip the bolt and check the headspace.
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  6. #6
    Boolit Mold
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    I would like to thank all who responded and follow up with a few short notes.


    1. The barrel vice I made worked great and a 30" cresent wrench for reciver wrench,,off and on easier than I though.
    2. I had found a special level with degree marks that worked very well for timing.
    3. for the headspace go gauge. I will keep talking to people as I see them or buy one.
    4. for my thoughts I stripped the two bolts I have and dropped a sized case in chamber. Old bolt has about .003 clearance, new bolt has very little clearance. looking foward to using tool.
    5.
    2. I will keep original barrel uncut unless for some strange reason it must be put into service.
    thanks again

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

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    One trick using the cresent wrench is to line the jaws with heavy vinal tape. this helps keep them from scratching and marring the action. I have my action wrench made with thin leather strips in the jaws for this reason. Most Garand M1A/M14 actions arnt bad to break loose but there is the odd one that's a real bear to get to pop loose, shoulder or receiver a couple thousandths to long and wrenched into time originally. Most pop with a solid blow from the hand on the wrench though.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    I laugh & cringe at the same time whenever I see the Garand barrel in the chain pipe vise!
    Best, Thomas.

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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"
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