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Old February 10, 2009, 09:42 PM   #1
timmerman1014
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Winchester 1897 - Loose Barrel to Receiver Fit

Is there any way to tighten up the barrel to receiver fit of an original Winchester 1897 shotgun? There is movement left and right of the barrel when assembled.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Old February 10, 2009, 10:39 PM   #2
Scorch
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Yes, it can easily be done.
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Old February 11, 2009, 11:34 PM   #3
rezman
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uhhmm, not to steal timmermanns thread, nor the scorch reply, but where are the details???

Is this a M97 takedown by any chance?

Interested minds are watching.
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Old February 12, 2009, 12:20 AM   #4
Joat
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If this is a takedown model, you will note that the barrel is held to the receiver by interrupted threads. The barrel has two 90* sectors with threads that correspond to a similar arrangement in the receiver. Thus, turning the barrel - magazine assembly 90* will allow it to be pulled free from the receiver.

Takedown of Model '97

As this joint wore in use, a provision was made to take up looseness on the receiver. The interrupted threads in the receiver were not cut directly in the receiver metal, but into a adjusting sleeve that fit into the receiver. This bushing could be rotated by loosening a screw that held down a saw-toothed part (adjusting sleeve lock) that engaged similar teeth on the rim of the sleeve. By this means, the bushing could be turned a notch at a time to tighten up the joint between the barrel and receiver.

'97 parts illustration showing adjusting sleeve (#6) and adjusting sleeve lock (#9)


I have seen '97s where they are at the end of this adjustment and cannot have any more wear accommodated in the threads. If your '97 is at the end of the adjustment range you can either find a larger adjusting sleeve or shim the joint (Brownell's sells the shims 100-000-629). The shims are only for 12ga. If you have a 16ga things get more difficult as parts availability is even worse than for the 12 ga guns.

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Old February 12, 2009, 12:49 PM   #5
Scorch
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Yes, you can adjust the headspace adjustment ring, but if all your adjustment is taken up, a gunsmith can trim a little off the back of the ring and you can start all over again. Since most of these old guns were sold or retired because they ran out of adjustment, I generally do not give details on how to adjust them. Take it to a gunsmith and have it inspected first, then you can have him show you how to adjust it. Also, avoid using full power 12 ga loads in a 1897, it will increase the headspave very quickly.
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Old February 17, 2009, 08:16 PM   #6
kirbythegunsmith
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Details

I beg to differ with the idea that you can trim a little off an adjusting sleeve (that is not a headspace ring, the chamber ring is a different part) to make it put things back in service, unless you are also contemplating an enormous amount of other refit work to the barrel and frame. [That is presuming the use of the original ring. A different ring (that didn't fit snugly in one of the conventional notches) may possibly fit from an offbeat recut, but never count on that kind of luck.]

I have seen examples where desperate shooters had recut notches on the opposite side (180 degrees out) as well as adding notches past the original factory cuts, and refacing the rear of the sleeve to turn the sleeve on one more turn (and/or out one turn) and still have a genuinely sloppy fit of the barrel. In other words, that is no answer, at all.

There is no substitute for using a properly fit and snug replacement adjusting sleeve, and very seldom will I need to use one alternate gunsmith method.

Using shims between the barrel and chamber ring must be the most ludicrous idea set forth in recent gun parts history, since it happens to be a substandard answer to a question that has a proper answer available. It does provide one solution, though, it provides cheapness. Just the thing your Winchester ought to appreciate, huh?

Kirby

By the way, Joat, I don't know who wrote that posting about the receiver threads not being cut directly into the receiver metal, but they were definitely making the issue confusing, since threads ARE cut in the metal of the receiver. Those threads are interrupted, as are the threads of the adjusting sleeves. That explanation is closer to the use of a frame-mounted adjuster such as was used in Remington guns Models 10, 29, 31), but still is bound to cause confusion.
I would not advise anybody to use that paragraph as an example of proper explanation, since too many errors are present.
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Old February 18, 2009, 02:44 PM   #7
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Kirby - I saw that but was in a hurry when I posted. It didn't effect the point I was making so I just left it rather than try to explain/clarify the explanation of the joint. Being familiar with the 97 I can picture the joint and, after making some unsupported assumptions of what was referenced, see how the explanation fits. In retrospect i can also see how someone not familiar with the design could misconstrue the explanation. I should have taken the time to clean the description up or clarify the terms used.

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