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Thread: Replacement Bolt Handle

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    Replacement Bolt Handle

    Has anyone here used a Rem 700 style bolt handle on Mauser or Springfield bolt?
    I realize the portion that wraps over top the bolt would have to be cut away and the rest prepped for mating to the existing handle root.
    Don't worry, really Sprinfield (03A3) is a parts gun; not modifying an original.

  2. #2
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    I haven't done the weld job myself, but I have seen a couple of rifles modified as you've described. Looked good.

    DG

  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy
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    The bolt handle is usually cut off at an angle about 1/4 inch from bolt body and a new one welded on. You do not want to screw up the cam angle where the bolt handle attaches to the bolt.

  4. #4
    Boolit Buddy
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    Thanks for the caution.

  5. #5
    Boolit Grand Master
    Mk42gunner's Avatar
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    Heat control paste is your friend in this application. The weld needs to be a good one too, it is very embarrassing to break a poor weld at the range. Even worse in the field.

    Robert

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    I have done many with the Rem 700 style replacement handle.
    Most have been on Mausers and even a couple of Mosin Nagants.
    I wish I can load pictures , because I still have a couple around here somewhere.
    I cut off the the Mauser bolt handle and cut the wrap around part off the replacement handle.
    The new handle was butt welded with beveled edges to the stub on the bolt using a heat sink and heat stop paste to protect the bolt from annealing.
    I gas welded the parts together , but can see that a Tig welder would work well too.
    The welding rod was the high nickel content rod that I get from Brownells just so the weld does not show up when or if you blue the bolt.
    But regular welding rod works just fine.
    Last edited by LAGS; 07-20-2021 at 02:14 AM.

  7. #7
    Boolit Buddy
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    I have done a few of these and used a bolt handle he I got from Midway. But Midway do not carry them anymore, any idea where i could find a few weld on style handles? I have a few Turks i am tinkering with.

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mk42gunner View Post
    Heat control paste is your friend in this application. The weld needs to be a good one too, it is very embarrassing to break a poor weld at the range. Even worse in the field.

    Robert
    You mean like a friend once had a Remington bolt handle come off during the rapid fire stage of a match?

    No home blacksmith welding involved here. My go-to welder is trained/certified in the various methods including laser and has even welded on USN aircraft. He currently works in a precision weld shop doing a range of work from fabrication to welding surgical equipment under microscope.
    This young man has done two bolt handles for me. The latest had the color change from heat stop just forward of the bolt handle root.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
    elk hunter's Avatar
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    Brownells carries several different ones.

    https://www.brownells.com/
    BIG OR SMALL I LIKE THEM ALL, 577 TO 22 HORNET.

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by LAGS View Post
    I have done many with the Rem 700 style replacement handle.
    Most have been on Mausers and even a couple of Mosin Nagants.
    I wish I can load pictures , because I still have a couple around here somewhere.
    I cut off the the Mauser bolt handle and cut the wrap around part off the replacement handle.
    The new handle was butt welded with beveled edges to the stub on the bolt using a heat sink and heat stop paste to protect the bolt from annealing.
    I gas welded the parts together , but can see that a Tig welder would work well too.
    The welding rod was the high nickel content rod that I get from Brownells just so the weld does not show up when or if you blue the bolt.
    But regular welding rod works just fine.
    Looking to assure plenty of scope clearance I have thought of cutting the wraparound part off even with the flat just above the Rem handle root, flatten the bolt side then position the handle with that flat surface flush with top of the original bolt root. This would position the bottom of the Rem handle alongside and a bit below the top of the tang.
    If you follow my description I would appreciate your thoughts on this. (After further reflection I think what I describe would place the handle too low. That flat surface would need lowering?)
    BTW, I am not just winging it.. In addition to a qualified welder I have guidance and assistance from a very capable smith.

    Midway catalogs "Holland's Tactical" handle I like a lot as it has a nice curve coming off the root but it is a bit more expensive.
    Last edited by DonHowe; 07-20-2021 at 10:40 AM.

  11. #11
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    As said by elk hunter, Brownell's carries bolt handles. I have welded some of them, and they came out nicely. I'm "old school" or maybe "uneducated" and use oxy-acetylene. You have to be selective, because sometimes bolt handles are cast rather than forged and it takes someone who knows more than I do to weld them properly. I'm thinking that the wrap around design of the Remington might lend itself to silver soldering.

    DG

  12. #12
    Boolit Master

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    Need one of these for welding, https://www.brownells.com/gunsmith-t...-378-1729.aspx
    Most military rifles can have the bolt cut off and welded back on. Mausers need about 1/4"- 5/16" of the left for the cam. The action frame needs to be cut to clear the new bolt angle. Bolts can also be forged with the proper equipment. I use a tig torch for welding but they can be welded with gas also. Have not found any problems with heat other than do not quench or it can become brittle and break easy. I have never seen the heat travel to the locking lugs when welding a bolt handle on. Best to cut a clearance for the scope on the mill with a fly cutter to get a nice even curve to the top of the bolt handle.
    Last edited by John Taylor; 07-21-2021 at 07:40 AM.

  13. #13
    Boolit Buddy
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    Pacific Tool & Guage has a couple of different styles. I have a couple, and they do look nice.

    https://pacifictoolandgauge.com/1434...e-bolt-handles

  14. #14
    Boolit Buddy
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    Thank you for your comments John! I have access to the fixture and heat sink from a rifle builder friend. If I undertake this it would be with my friend's guidance. Or he will do it for me if I wish.
    My friend very much favors the Lenard Brownell style handle and they do look very nice on classic hunting rifles. I favor other styles for certain applications. What I would really like on my parts-gun 03A3 is a bolt handle of the style Griffin and Howr used on Springfield sporters, tho I am sure those were forged. My bolt is past that already.

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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