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Thread: .32 S&W Long rifle build

  1. #1
    Moderator Emeritus/Boolit Master in Heavens Range
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    .32 S&W Long rifle build

    Fellows, I'm wanting to build a rifle in .32 S&W Long for squirrels, and need some advice regarding what to build it on - As well as possibly buying an action from someone for the job.

    I want something fairly light but sturdy, that I can mount a scope on. The biggest requirement is something with the strength to hold the round. While others have done it, that cuts the Rem #4 rolling block out of the running in my eyes. Some actions that might be suitable include:

    1. Model 52 Winchester (two locking lugs).
    2. Remington 580 (six locking lugs)
    3. There are some other 22's that have a machined bolt with a locking lug as part of the bolt, but I don't have any names. Suggestions?
    4. The Stevens 44 or 44 1/2 might be possibilities if I can find one I can afford.
    5. Savage 219 for relining
    6. Uberti #2 Rolling block in .357 or .22 Hornet for relining
    7. Remington #2 for relining.

    If anyone has a suitable action or rifle, please let me know.

    Regards,
    Molly
    Regards,

    Molly

    "The remedy for evil men is not the abrogation of the rights of law abiding citizens. The remedy for evil men is the gallows." Thomas Jefferson

  2. #2
    Anti-Socialist Texan


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    You find a savage 219 that needs relining you should sell it to me

    Gear
    You can't fix Stupid, but you can occasionally head it off before it hurts something. --Stephen Adams

    To universalize one's experience and state it as the norm is always thin ice on which to stand.--CharGar

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  3. #3
    Boolit Master
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    I relined several H&R Toppers to .32 H&R. They work out really well and have a handy feel to them. My experience is that it can be done quite easily and inexpensively. I've used 30 cal barrels and get groups of 5/8" at 50 yds and 1 1/4 at 100. I'd check the pawn shops for small frame single shot shotguns and go from there.

  4. #4
    Moderator Emeritus/Boolit Master in Heavens Range
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    Quote Originally Posted by geargnasher View Post
    You find a savage 219 that needs relining you should sell it to me Gear
    It doesn't have to 'need' relining for my purposes. But FYI, there is one in 22 Hornet on Gunbroker.com right now.
    Molly
    Regards,

    Molly

    "The remedy for evil men is not the abrogation of the rights of law abiding citizens. The remedy for evil men is the gallows." Thomas Jefferson

  5. #5
    Moderator Emeritus/Boolit Master in Heavens Range
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2Tite View Post
    I relined several H&R Toppers to .32 H&R. They work out really well and have a handy feel to them. My experience is that it can be done quite easily and inexpensively. I've used 30 cal barrels and get groups of 5/8" at 50 yds and 1 1/4 at 100. I'd check the pawn shops for small frame single shot shotguns and go from there.
    I'd like to find a small frame break-open for the job. Got one handy? As for the Toppers, I realize they could be used, but I think they'd result in an unnecessarily heavy rifle. I suppose one could cut the shotgun barrel off and weld a salvaged 303 British barrel to the block below, but that's getting to be a bit of trouble.

    Molly

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    I have a very old single barrel shotgun which I'd considered converting to handle the .32 S&W Long, since I have a Hand Jector in that chambering already.

    I have run across a site where a gentleman converted a very slim .410 shotgun to .32 for use as a Rook Rifle.
    Another site described how a naturalist working for a musuem converted his bird gun to fire the .38 special cartridges his guide gave him , the .38 being the guides personal defense pistol in those dangerous regions.
    The .38 bullets allowed quick dispatch of trapped specimens of fairly large animals without damaging the hides as much as his shot gun had. He used a primitive smoothbore hand made adapter made from items found laying about the camp.

    My 12 ga is slim for its chambering but far too large to make a simple re barreling feasible, so I'd planned on using a barrel insert made using a new condition SMLE replacement barrel I'd deactivated when I found its rear sight pin hole had been double drilled nearly cutting into the bore. I saved a cut off section of 17 inches which should be usable for the .32 though better suited for the .32-20 since the bore slugs as .314.
    My Hand Ejector bore slugs at .315 and its very accurate so the .314 bore should work okay.

    I'd figured on making a brass chamber insert threaded for the barrel, which would leave room to add a extractor adaptor, the original adaptor would push the chamber adaptors integral extractor.

    This old shotgun was badly worn and my attempts to ream out its deep pitting were only partially successful. The firing pin hole is badly wallowed out so a brazed in breech face will be necessary which ever way I go.
    When finished I'll proof test the shotgun without the adaptor to be sure it can hold up to 2 3/4 shot shell loads before going any further, since in later years some heir might try shooting it with shot shells.

    Besides its use as a small game rifle such a conversion can be used with light shot snake loads as a "Garden Gun" to take care of vermin without raising a ruckus from the neighbors.

    This reminds me. There are several versions of a very simple break down .410 shot gun that would make a good basis for such a conversion. I shot a few rounds through one of these belonging to a friend last year. Its not much as a .410, far too light and kicks like a mule. but might work well in .32.
    The folding butt shotgun is very compact and based on a deringer type pistol frame made by that company. Its much like the small breakdown plastic flare pistols in appearance but of stronger metal construction.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master Dark Helmet's Avatar
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    Look here and elsewhere on the CBA website http://www.castbulletassoc.org/forum...orum.php?id=48

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    Molly--Since shotshell loads were mentioned, I thought I'd add that I have developed some surprisingly successfull shot loads for the .32 S&W Long using the milk jug shotcup that I demonstrated here http://castboolits.gunloads.com/show...shotshell+work

    I'd love to see how that would work in a rifle. If you're interested I can dig up my dimensional drawings of the tools and shotcup pattern, I made a set for another member here and tested it in my own pocket revolver, but he has the tools themselves.

    Don't tempt me on that 219 like that, not nice!

    Gear
    You can't fix Stupid, but you can occasionally head it off before it hurts something. --Stephen Adams

    To universalize one's experience and state it as the norm is always thin ice on which to stand.--CharGar

    Being able to separate the wheat from the chaff has always been a valuable skill in all of life's activities. --Bwana


  9. #9
    Moderator Emeritus/Boolit Master in Heavens Range
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    Gnasher,

    >Molly--Since shotshell loads were mentioned, I thought I'd add that I have developed some surprisingly successfull shot loads for the .32 S&W Long using the milk jug shotcup that I demonstrated
    I'd love to see how that would work in a rifle. If you're interested I can dig up my dimensional drawings of the tools and shotcup pattern, I made a set for another member here and tested it in my own pocket revolver, but he has the tools themselves.

    Really neat, and a great read. I hadn't planned to make shot loads in the .32, but I AM impressed by the uniformity of your shot distribution. But first, I've gotta get the rifle built.

    One similar trick I've been wanting to try out is medicine capsules full of shot. They're made in all sorts of diameters and lengths. Ditto for thin wall plastic tubing like Tygon.

    >Don't tempt me on that 219 like that, not nice!

    Well, when I was browsing today, I noticed a whole handful of 219's for sale on Gunbroker, but the sellers seem to like them a lot more than I do, to judge from their prices - even for some pretty rough examples. I just couldn't bring myself to come between them and something they liked so much. Ain't I the nice guy?
    Regards,

    Molly

    "The remedy for evil men is not the abrogation of the rights of law abiding citizens. The remedy for evil men is the gallows." Thomas Jefferson

  10. #10
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    ...............It would seem to me that the SS break open shotgun would be the least expensive and most readily available means to go with. Even for a prototypeing experiment. The ejectors they are normally fitted with would be readily adaptable to the rimmed 32 Smith case. Ideally it'd be a .410, but I'm sure there are 10x as many 20 ga, and 100x as many 12ga examples out there.

    I'd shorten the shotgun bbl to 20" and then figure on maybe a 10 to 14" bbl for the 32 S&W L cartridge. How best to fit the new barrel (permanent or not) would be open to conjecture. I know they make 22RF bbl inserts for the full sized 40 and 45 caliber RB's and Sharps rifles and they shoot very well and they're obviously removeable, if that was of interest.

    ..............Buckshot
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  11. #11
    Boolit Master
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    In my opinion (which is often worth about as much as a bucket of warm spit) if you're going to go to the expense and hassle of building a specialty gun, why not start out with something classy and put as much sweat equity into it as you can so as to end up with something to treasure and be proud to show off? I would opt for a small Martini action or a Stevens 44. Most .22 actions just don't have the moxie to withstand a lot of CF pressure- even if you keep the loads on the light side, sooner or later some schmuck will own it and try to hot rod it and then wish he hadn't. Break-open rifles made from el-cheapo shotgun actions just never turned me on, but like I said that's just the opinion of an opinionated old bastard.

    I think the .32 Long in a rifle is a wonderful idea and have been threatening to do it myself for a long time. Keep us apprised of what you end up doing. It may well get me off my butt and do likewise.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master Artful's Avatar
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    While you could use many actons, I have seen old leveraction Marlins in that chambering that I would look for. As a matter of fact I think the last one I saw was 32 rimfire and 32 long - required you to change firing pins in the bolt.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master


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    A TC Contender carbine would be really handy. I recently saw a custom barrel in .32 ACP sold on another forum. I would get a blank with the correct groove depth and twist and send it to one of several places. I was going to order the Contender carbine barrel in .30 carbine until I found the twist was 10". efer a 16 or 18" twist for the .30 carbine and thing the same would be best for a .32S&WL also, probably the .32 H&R also.

    Larry Gibson

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    If you look around, you might find a Savage 219 in 32/20. That would be sweet!

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    I have a contender carbine barrel in .32 long. Actually I call it 30 long as the groove diameter is .308. It is very accurate with cast sized to .310". The Lee soupcan works especially well in spite of the 1 in 10 twist.

  16. #16
    Boolit Man
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    I built a rifle for a friend in 32 long about two years ago. I used a Lee Enfield (either No1 Mk3 or No4Mk1or2). I removed the barrel, which incidently is the correct bore diameter for the 32 long, and cut off the chamber area. Unfortunately, when the chamber area is removed, there is not enough "meat" left on the barrel to re-thread. I machined down the barrel to remove the taper, and made a 1.25" bushing for threading into the action. I bore the bushing .0005 smaller than the diameter of the barrel. I put the barrel into the deep freeze, and after a few hours when it's frozen, I heat up the bushing nice and red, then drop it onto the frozen barrel. The bushing just drops on to the barrel. When the two pieces reach the same temperature, a small nuclear device won't separate them. Regardless, I still make a small tack weld on the underside of the barrel.

    I used a boring bar to cut the chamber and the throat. Pretty small boring bar, so a lot of very light cuts are necessary. A chambering reamer would have been a lot easier.

    To make a long story somewhat shorter, I had to re-clock the front sight. I did it by eye, and touched a little silver solder to it. The damn thing shot dead on at 20 meters with the rear peep sight at the 100yd. mark. The extractor, once modified for the 32 long rim, pulls the case out of the chamber and drops it straight down through the magazine well. My friend puts a small tupperware container under the rifle when shooting from the bench to catch the empties. When he shoots it in the field, he puts an empty 303 magazine (minus the spring and follower) into the mag well. The empty mag box catches the empties.

    I'm told that it shoots 32 acp as well as 32 longs and shorts. As the 32 acp is a semi-rimmed case, it headspaces ok when used in a rifle (a little sloppy).

    Anyway, we both call it "the ugly stick". Beat up mil stock, stubby barrel, and a blast to shoot.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master
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    Well that's pretty cool! I would have never thought to use a .303 Brit barrel, and the shrink-fit knoxform is ingenious.

  18. #18
    Moderator Emeritus/Boolit Master in Heavens Range
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buckshot View Post
    ...............It would seem to me that the SS break open shotgun would be the least expensive and most readily available means to go with. ..............Buckshot
    Yeah, but I can't seem to FIND one except for the heavy Toppers. Suggestions? Brand names?
    Regards,

    Molly

    "The remedy for evil men is not the abrogation of the rights of law abiding citizens. The remedy for evil men is the gallows." Thomas Jefferson

  19. #19
    Moderator Emeritus/Boolit Master in Heavens Range
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    Reply

    >I would opt for a small Martini action or a Stevens 44.

    I HAVE a small martini. Problem is, it's already set up as a 3-caliber switch barrel gun. The other problem is that it's hard to scope, and my eyes don't like iron sights any more. Probably gonna have to sell it, when I can bring myself to it.

    >Most .22 actions just don't have the moxie to withstand a lot of CF pressure- even if you keep the loads on the light side, sooner or later some schmuck will own it and try to hot rod it and then wish he hadn't.

    Yeah, but the Remington action has six lugs. If I could find one that someone had run over with a truck ...

    >Break-open rifles made from el-cheapo shotgun actions just never turned me on,

    Yeah, me too, but cost really is a significant factor. And I've read reports that they really do quite well.

    >I think the .32 Long in a rifle is a wonderful idea and have been threatening to do it myself for a long time. Keep us apprised of what you end up doing. It may well get me off my butt and do likewise.

    Made one up on a Rem #4 RB once (sorta), but kept it at .32 RF ballistics. I'd like to make one that I can tie a can to once in a while, without worrying about it coming apart on me. The #4 isn't the strongest action in the world. BTW, you can read about it in the rimfire forum, under the "Duplicating the .32 RF" thread. Sure wish I'd kept it. I DO have a Uberti RB pistol that would make a sweet rifle, but it would take a LOT of work.
    Regards,

    Molly

    "The remedy for evil men is not the abrogation of the rights of law abiding citizens. The remedy for evil men is the gallows." Thomas Jefferson

  20. #20
    Moderator Emeritus/Boolit Master in Heavens Range
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artful View Post
    While you could use many actons, I have seen old leveraction Marlins in that chambering that I would look for. As a matter of fact I think the last one I saw was 32 rimfire and 32 long - required you to change firing pins in the bolt.
    Yep. One of the first things I looked for. Collectors think a lot more of them than I ever will.
    Regards,

    Molly

    "The remedy for evil men is not the abrogation of the rights of law abiding citizens. The remedy for evil men is the gallows." Thomas Jefferson

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