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Thread: Marlin 1895 Barrel Shortening Project

  1. #1

    Marlin 1895 Barrel Shortening Project

    Hello everyone, I recently found and bought a Marlin 1895GS with the JM Stamp.

    I love the rifle but want to make the rifle into more of a trapper style setup.

    Not much of a gunsmith but I want to learn and I'm pretty handy.

    I have a plan but I want to pick the brains of some more experienced people before proceeding.

    I want to cut the barrel down to 16.5" or short enough to clear the rear front sight screw hole.
    I know I need to stay above 16" so I'll measure the barrel length from the closed bolt.
    I'll use a fine toothed hacksaw to rough cut the barrel down to length.
    I was going to use a Brownells "One Caliber Set for muzzle crowning but I think I want to go with a Manson Precision Reamer crowning tool with a 0° cutter to true the muzzle to the bore and a 45° changer cutter to break the edges.
    Then I'll use a brownells 45° cutter for the crown.
    That all seems pretty clear cut but where I run into a roadblock is the front sight.
    I want to use the original ramp, hood and sight insert but I'm not sure how to locate and drill and tap the screw holes.
    I have access to a drill press but it isn't a real quality one so I've been looking at the Forster Sight Mounting Fixture to prevent any runout or walking.

    Any advice or ways I can make this easier? Really trying to avoid the price and long turnaround time of a true gunsmith here so any help will be appreciated.
    Thank you!

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    My only suggestion is to cut something like 1/2” off the barrel and try finishing it as you describe. If your first cut is at 16” you won’t have a second chance.

    I’ve never done a front sight, but I think you’d want to drill for the new site before cutting the barrel. Use the existing holes to help get the barrel properly oriented in the fixture, and then just move a few inches down the barrel to mark and drill. Don’t drill into the bore!

    My real recommendation is that you’re being penny wise and pound foolish. Also, If you really want to work this out you should probably buy a cheap 10-22 barrel and practice for a while. I applauded efforts to learn new things, but would hate to see you destroy your barrel.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    sulphur springs, Tx
    You can JB Weld the front site in position and check it to make sure that is where you want it and scribe the hole locations. The fixture can then be used to get the holes correct.
    There are only two kinds of men:

    1. Those who know Jesus Christ is both Creator and Sovereign Lord.

    2. Those about to learn that Jesus Christ is both Creator and Sovereign Lord.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    NW Ohio, almost as N and W as you can be :-)
    Honestly you might be able to save yourself a whole lot of cash by just making a jig to file the muzzle flat, then use one of these to crown .

    turn it carefully with something like this

    I use a similar tool hand held in the lathe to crown and the rifles shoot in the .2's and .3's . The old school round head brass screw and valve grinding compound will work too.

    I have seen some tests where they made the muzzle not square intentionally and accuracy was not really affcted, for sure not as much as you would think.

    I agree with putting the new sight on first and lining it up to co witness with the existing sights.

    Both ends WHAT a player

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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