The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Skunkworks > The Smithy

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old September 12, 2014, 06:02 PM   #1
CowTowner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 17, 2007
Location: Cowtown of course!
Posts: 1,706
Receiver Opinions Please

I purchased one of these from Sarco, http://www.e-sarcoinc.com/dumoulin-mauser-action.aspx and will pick it up Sunday.
I now realize that the description states that it is "This is an A-2 steel, forged / heat treated body ......" and not the typical 4140 steel.
Did I make a bad decision to base a 35 Whelen on this receiver?

Thanks for the education and information.
__________________
NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, Home Firearms Safety, Pistol and Rifle Instructor
"There are three classes of people: those who see, those who see when they are shown, those who do not see."
Leonardo da Vinci
CowTowner is offline  
Old September 12, 2014, 09:06 PM   #2
James K
Staff
 
Join Date: March 17, 1999
Posts: 23,403
A2 is an air-hardening (which is what the "A" means) tool steel that should be plenty strong and very hard if given the full treatment. For a comparison with 4140, Google both "A2 steel" and "4140 steel". I am not enough of a metallurgist to tell from the composition which would make the better receiver, though I suspect either would be fine.

Jim
__________________
Jim K
James K is offline  
Old September 13, 2014, 06:16 PM   #3
Dixie Gunsmithing
Staff
 
Join Date: April 27, 2013
Location: Ohio
Posts: 1,902
The unhardened yield strength for the two is about the same, however A-2 has about twice the carbon content. A-2 will probably be a little more brittle over this If both are hardened to the same scale, they would be about equal in yield.
Dixie Gunsmithing is offline  
Old September 13, 2014, 06:19 PM   #4
CowTowner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 17, 2007
Location: Cowtown of course!
Posts: 1,706
So, acceptable to be used to build a .35 Whelen?
Or should I use this for something a little less punishing?
__________________
NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, Home Firearms Safety, Pistol and Rifle Instructor
"There are three classes of people: those who see, those who see when they are shown, those who do not see."
Leonardo da Vinci
CowTowner is offline  
Old September 13, 2014, 07:23 PM   #5
mete
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 14, 2004
Location: NY State
Posts: 6,036
A-2 has quite a bit more carbon than 4140 - therefore the A-2 will have much more wear resistance .I don't know why they would choose that .It has to be heat treated to not much more than HRc 40 to insure something not brittle .The additional wear resistance is there though.
__________________
And Watson , bring your revolver !
mete is offline  
Old September 13, 2014, 10:29 PM   #6
tango1niner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 5, 2009
Location: rural upstate NY
Posts: 158
Both yield strength and % of elongation should be checked at the perspective Rockwell hardness of each material. I would think the 4140 would be tough like a wrench and the A-2 on the brittle side.

Where I worked we used A-2 and O-2 for parts of jigs and fixtures.

Last edited by tango1niner; September 13, 2014 at 10:42 PM.
tango1niner is offline  
Old September 13, 2014, 11:54 PM   #7
James K
Staff
 
Join Date: March 17, 1999
Posts: 23,403
They say the hardness is RC 47/48, harder than most Mausers, but nowhere near the '03A3 range. The wording is odd but they seem to say the receiver is drilled and tapped 6/48, so even if it is hard there should be no big problem.

Jim
__________________
Jim K
James K is offline  
Old September 14, 2014, 06:49 AM   #8
tango1niner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 5, 2009
Location: rural upstate NY
Posts: 158
Didn't the 03-A3 have a very hard surface and a slightly softer core?

Just checked out the ad and the receiver looks great on paper. The only reason I can see for using A-2 is that it is air hardening and therefore would have minimal dimensional changes during hardening/cooling vs. 4140 which has quite a severe quench to get the hardness.

Last edited by tango1niner; September 14, 2014 at 08:23 AM.
tango1niner is offline  
Old September 14, 2014, 08:26 AM   #9
F. Guffey
Senior Member
 
Join Date: July 18, 2008
Posts: 4,816
The safety, bent bolt, drilled and tapped and the hinged floor plate would cost that much if you used a Mauser action. If you can believe what you read on the Internet, this action will be the #1 seller.

I did not see "while supply last".

F. Guffey
F. Guffey is offline  
Old September 14, 2014, 10:04 AM   #10
4V50 Gary
Staff
 
Join Date: November 2, 1998
Location: Colorado
Posts: 18,671
Methinks it will handle the .35 Whelan

BTW: Bent bolt handle? Hinged floor plate? Swing type safety? Looks good to me.
__________________
Vigilantibus et non dormientibus jura subveniunt. Molon Labe!
4V50 Gary is offline  
Old September 14, 2014, 11:14 AM   #11
Slamfire
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 27, 2007
Posts: 4,808
Quote:
Did I make a bad decision to base a 35 Whelen on this receiver?
That is the caliber I am going to use. I have a lot of respect for the 35 Whelen, my gunsmith recommended a #4 Douglas contour for the weight. I am going for a 1:14 twist as I do not plan to shoot anything heavier than 250 grains. I have a 35 Whelen , #2 Douglas contour, it weighs 8 lbs 11.2 oz, with scope, and the recoil is painful. The only problem is getting the barrel and the stock, everything is 10-14 weeks back order!

These actions do not have Belgium proof marks, but SARCO claims they are Belgium made. The receiver is marked Dumoulin Herstal SA.

The split receiver ring collar is a departure from M98, and is what FN did, but the rest of the action is very M98 Mauser. It has the guide rib, undercut claw extractor tongue, milled magazine feed lips, the firing pin interlock, the two piece firing pin shaft. It has a modern M70 safety and hinged floor plate. The Mauser actions of the 50’s did not have these features so this is an improvement.

I don’t know what rings it will take, neither does Sarco. The threaded holes are 6-48, need a drop of oil and a little screwdriver to get the screws to start.


It almost fit into a M1908/34 CZ action. The trigger guard screws line up with the stock, but the magazine and floorplate are larger. Based on my measurements, the screw holes are 19.9 cm (about 7 13/16”) apart. The receiver ring is wider than my Columbian Mauser receiver ring, but not by much.

My action fed 308 and 30-06 from the magazine.

I am skeptical whether these receivers are made of A2 steel. When I talked to Sarco, I was not impressed with the technical competency of the person on the phone, so whether the receivers are made from A2 steel is an article of faith. It could be that it is a European steel close in composition to A2, given that steel specifications are different, because the specifying agencies are different corporations. Given that this is the 21st Century, a competent designer/manufacturer would use an alloy steel instead of the plain carbon steels FN used in the 50’s, and a decent alloy steel is an improvement. My preference would be 4340 for toughness. I have not looked up the fatigue or Charpy impact results on A2, and I would be interested in the comparison, assuming that the receiver is made from A2.

I have not seen a Mauser action of this quality since the 50’s FN’s, and it has a better safety, trigger, and floor plate.


Front dovetail, no idea what will fit.








30-06 cases, all fed from magazine


308 Win fed from magazine
__________________
If I'm not shooting, I'm reloading.

Last edited by Slamfire; September 17, 2014 at 05:02 PM.
Slamfire is offline  
Old September 14, 2014, 12:34 PM   #12
William T. Watts
Senior Member
 
Join Date: January 20, 2010
Location: Central Arkansas
Posts: 1,059
I built a 358 Norma on a Winchester model 70 action, The recoil was brutal

I just can't get excited about an action that's going to require a lot of hand work to make everything fit and look good, By the time you have a barrel and stock added to the total where is the savings? The upside I liked the look of the action, down side the work that will go into the rifle to finish it out been there and done that for the last time. I am wanting another rifle but am looking/thinking a new Winchester Model 70 classic in 30/06 to finish out my collection.. William
William T. Watts is offline  
Old September 14, 2014, 01:46 PM   #13
Slamfire
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 27, 2007
Posts: 4,808
Quote:
I just can't get excited about an action that's going to require a lot of hand work to make everything fit and look good, By the time you have a barrel and stock added to the total where is the savings?
There is no savings, outside of not buying a factory Dumoulin. I checked those out and factory Dumoulin’s are thousands of dollars. The last I checked on modern made Mauser 98 actions, which had to have been in the early 90’s, they were expensive. I replied to an ad in Shotgun News, and the first thing the gentleman who answered the phone said, "these actions are XX giga dollars". I forget the amount, but it was staggering and that was all the gentleman needed to say. Mauser actions always were expensive, FN Deluxe rifles were more expensive than pre 64 M70’s. As time went on, FN continued dropping Mauser 98 features, under the Browning name, by the time you get into the 70’s, about the only thing left that was Mauser was the claw extractor.

So, buying one of these actions does not make economic sense, what makes sense, if you want a 35 Whelen, go buy a used factory rifle. Or a custom rifle who, off the owner, who like me, will never get the price of the custom job on resale.

But I wanted a real Mauser action, and I wanted a modern action built out of modern steels. I was not going to rip up a early 50’s FN Deluxe, or a J. C. Higgins M51, because I abhor the ruination of an historical object.
__________________
If I'm not shooting, I'm reloading.
Slamfire is offline  
Old September 14, 2014, 03:59 PM   #14
tobnpr
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 1, 2010
Location: Tampa Bay
Posts: 4,044
I posted on another thread about these, they seem like one hell of a buy.

Cripes, even "project" K98-based Mausers- with pitted and rusted receivers and shot barrels- sell for as much. Why buy an old Mauser for a build when one can get this for $295?

Stock mods (opening up magwell, action screws if needed) seem minor. As we always say, it's easy enough to remove material; can't do the opposite. Besides, I'd epoxy bed and install pillars...making precision for much of any inletting mods unnecessary.

Far as the mounting holes for ring bases, seems it would not be too difficult to enlarge the existing holes, #8 wouldn't be a bad idea anyway. Then drill out picatinny rails sections, or a full-length rail, to match the pattern with a mill.
__________________
07 FFL /Mosin-Nagant Custom Shop/Bent Bolts
Custom Bolt Actions/Re-barreling/Brake Installs
Genuine Cerakote Applicator
www.biggorillagunworks.com
tobnpr is offline  
Old September 15, 2014, 09:41 AM   #15
CowTowner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 17, 2007
Location: Cowtown of course!
Posts: 1,706
OK, it appears that I made a good decision. Maybe not from a financial perspective, but I wanted a darn Mauser.
Thanks for the feedback and technical information. Now on to the task of finding the barrel and fitting work at a price I might be able to afford.
Oh yeah, then a stock properly pillared and bedded with a decelerator fitted.
__________________
NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, Home Firearms Safety, Pistol and Rifle Instructor
"There are three classes of people: those who see, those who see when they are shown, those who do not see."
Leonardo da Vinci
CowTowner is offline  
Old September 15, 2014, 12:42 PM   #16
Dixie Gunsmithing
Staff
 
Join Date: April 27, 2013
Location: Ohio
Posts: 1,902
Here is something to look at when designing guns. Receiver strength can be much lower than barrel strength. The receiver only needs to prevent the bolt from separating away from the breech of the barrel, and that pressure is really much lower than the hoop (circumferential) strength of the barrel at the chamber. The longitudinal pressure, which is between the bullet, and the inside rear of the cartridge is much lower, by a good factor, than the bursting strength of the chamber walls. Hoop strength comes from the old barrel hoop strength, that if a hoop broke, the staves would fall apart. This failure is a longitudinal crack, or the banana peel effect you see on a burst barrel. The other pressure, or longitudinal pressure, would be the barrel actually pulling apart, which is the low side. Cracks, or failures are always at 90 degrees to the pressure exerted.

Since the longitudinal pressure is so low, a lot softer material can be used for the bolt and the frame, and the barrel thread portion of any frame. There are plenty of steels that will work at the as annealed yield strength, with a good safety factor applied. The only caution would be if one was trying to make something extra light weight, and to get the yield up, you had to harden it.
Dixie Gunsmithing is offline  
Old September 15, 2014, 01:53 PM   #17
James K
Staff
 
Join Date: March 17, 1999
Posts: 23,403
Mausers were always expensive actions/rifles. We are used to buying military surplus weapons at a fraction of what they originally cost, and think those prices reflect the actual cost, when they reflect the fact that nations sell off obsolete and surplus materiel dirt cheap to save the cost of storing it. (In the 1920's, Krag rifles were sold by the U.S. Army through the DCM for as little as $1.25. Even thought that wold be $45 or so in today's money, the actual cost would have been much more.)

Jim
__________________
Jim K
James K is offline  
Old September 17, 2014, 05:15 PM   #18
Slamfire
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 27, 2007
Posts: 4,808
My Midway Green Mountain barrels arrived, I thought this would be helpful as I have not found anyone taking the time to put actual barrel weights on the web.

F34 contour Green Mountain short chambered and threaded for M98, 35 Whelen CM 1:14 twist 24” 2 lbs 15.2 oz

F34 contour Green Mountain 30-06 CM 1 24” 3 lbs 2.0 oz

Dumoulin action 3 pounds 2.8 ounces

Boyd’s laminated stock, 13 ¾” pull, 2 lb 9.4 ounces.

Action/Barrel/Stock in 35 Whelen 8 lb 11.4 ounces, with 30-06 barrel 8 lbs 14 ounces.

Bedding and scope will raise the weight. I like the feel with the 30-06 barrel, I am concerned about the recoil with the 35 Whelen barrel. Mind you, 99.99% of my shots are with 14 lb+ target rifles. My NM AR15 weighs 17 pounds. Lugging that thing, 1000 yards to the pits at Vaile, was like carrying a ship anchor.

The action almost dropped into the Boyd’s stock. I could press the action in, but it would pop out. I think the receiver ring is a little wide and long for the Boyd’s. A little time with a dremel tool and wood scrappers, and everything will fit. The trigger guard did drop in, but it was pushed out if I opened the hinged floorplate. A recess needs to be cut into the stock to clear the tip of hinged floorplate.
__________________
If I'm not shooting, I'm reloading.
Slamfire is offline  
Old September 19, 2014, 08:53 AM   #19
CowTowner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 17, 2007
Location: Cowtown of course!
Posts: 1,706
Slamfire, I'm interested to know if you plan to follow the "recommendations" on the Sarco webpage for these receivers. As in, square the receiver and bolt face, etc...
__________________
NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, Home Firearms Safety, Pistol and Rifle Instructor
"There are three classes of people: those who see, those who see when they are shown, those who do not see."
Leonardo da Vinci
CowTowner is offline  
Old September 19, 2014, 09:55 AM   #20
Clark
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 4, 1999
Location: WA, the ever blue state
Posts: 4,617
Those recommendations were like mom and apple pie for gunsmith instructions. There is nothing in them unique to that action.

The truing the face, lapping the lugs, truing the bolt face.... would trace back to the Kuehnhausen Mauser book. I still have some Mausers lying around from 2002 when I built tooling and fell for some of that.

Don't do that.
At least of my 100+ Mausers I have worked on and over load tested, I never sent a Mauser to the heat treat shop.
What a terrible book!
__________________
The word 'forum" does not mean "not criticizing books."
"Ad hominem fallacy" is not the same as point by point criticism of books. If you bought the book, and believe it all, it may FEEL like an ad hominem attack, but you might strive to accept other points of view may exist.
Are we a nation of competing ideas, or a nation of forced conformity of thought?
Clark is offline  
Old September 19, 2014, 10:03 AM   #21
Slamfire
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 27, 2007
Posts: 4,808
Quote:
Slamfire, I'm interested to know if you plan to follow the "recommendations" on the Sarco webpage for these receivers. As in, square the receiver and bolt face, etc...
I have already checked out the lug engagement with Prussian blue. One of the split lugs is not bearing so some lapping needs to bring that into contact. Bearing was adequate on the lower lug.

Talked to the gunsmith, he is more concerned about even bearing on the inner collar than truing the receiver face. I asked him his opinion on truing the bolt face, he hemmed and hawed, he does not do it for himself, he trues bolt faces because everyone else asks for it. This guy is an active across the course and long range shooter. He has won the Long Range Matches at Camp Perry, he still shoots with a pre WW2 M70 that he did nothing to the action besides adding a new barrel and sight bases. (of course the trigger , stock, etc, have been changed to a target configuration) If he does not bother with this stuff target shooting, and is one of the top XTC and Long Range shooters in the US, I doubt it will make much of a difference on a hunting rifle. I will ask the gunsmith to check, but unless it is horribly off, I don’t want anything done. It is too easy for these guys to remove some of the bolt face shoulder when truing the bolt face. I do want all lugs to bear. The Mauser has split lugs on the left, if only one bears that might overstrain the bearing lug. Lug contact around 60% is fine, for me, on a new rifle. I am not a fan of lapping or grinding as there may be a case hardened surface and I don’t want it removed, and don’t like it being reduced in thickness. I am of the opinion that lapping, truing lugs, grinding, is something that is mandatory for major out of tolerance situations, but otherwise, as little as possible.

This M14 rifle bolt, it is on its third match barrel, all cases lubricated with Johnson paste wax, maybe it had 60-70% engagement when it was new. It has settled in nicely and the lug engagement has increased over time. I doubt I will ever get to a fourth barrel as I hardly ever shoot the thing anymore.



On my match Mauser, with a military receiver, I only asked for receiver face/inner collar truing, I have no idea how much the lugs bear in the receiver, but I shot hese 20 round groups, prone with a sling, with irons, in competition, with the thing, so I am not convinced that all that bench rest machining adds all that much in a hand held rifle.


__________________
If I'm not shooting, I'm reloading.

Last edited by Slamfire; September 19, 2014 at 04:37 PM.
Slamfire is offline  
Old September 19, 2014, 10:08 AM   #22
Slamfire
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 27, 2007
Posts: 4,808
Quote:
At least of my 100+ Mausers I have worked on and over load tested, I never sent a Mauser to the heat treat shop.
If you heated the thing up to the point that you annealed the receiver, than you either heat treat or toss, because it would be too soft. But re heat treating an old receiver has its risks, it could crack.

Quote:
What a terrible book!
Anything else in the book not correspond to your experience?
__________________
If I'm not shooting, I'm reloading.
Slamfire is offline  
Old September 19, 2014, 07:03 PM   #23
Gunplummer
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 11, 2010
Location: South East Pa.
Posts: 2,863
I pay attention to what Clark says because he is a guy like me. Instead of reading a book and taking it as Gospel, he will check it out. Can someone tell us just what type of material most mausers were made of? It sure was not 4140. Very few modern rifle receivers were made of 4140. The terms "4140" and "Chrome Molly" are used as comparisons by advertisers because so many people have heard them in advertising over the years that they have become a standard for buyers that do no metal working. Someone mentioned the '03 and had it backwards. The '03 had problems BECAUSE it's core was not soft. Most mausers are case hardened and have junk metal as a core. When heat treating O-1 or A-2, I doubt that a hard shell with a softer core can be attained. Maybe with newer, modern heat treating, but I doubt it. It is drawn back somewhat like 4140, with the complete section attaining the same RC hardness. I have made many claw extractors from 4140 and O-1 just by drawing the material back to "Spring". I prefered O-1 over A-2 only because of the limited furnace I was using. I had a harder time controlling warpage with A-2. You will probably have the same physical properties as 4140 using A-2. Much tougher, but softer without the hard wearing outer surface.

Last edited by 4V50 Gary; September 19, 2014 at 11:33 PM. Reason: removed pronouns
Gunplummer is offline  
Old September 20, 2014, 12:48 PM   #24
Bart B.
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 15, 2009
Posts: 6,318
Slamfire, a 'smith who barreled many Win. 70's for folks winning matches and setting records in high power matches told me that about 1 in 20 or so had a receiver face square with its barrel tenon threads. Every once in a while, one he'd set up for facing would clean up all the way around on the first .0002" of tool cut into the metal on the receiver's face. That may well have been the case with the competitor you mentioned.

On the other hand, one old early '50's Win 70 receiver got passed around among several top ranked shooters and 'smiths but none could get it to shoot well after truing up everything they could think of the first time. Finally, the 'smith mentioned above checked it out. He found its tenon thread axis was so cockeyed and out of alignment with the boltway, it never held epoxy bedding very well nor shot worth loading ammo for. On a mandrel between centers on a lathe and it threaded onto it, the boltway's back end spun near 1/4" off center. How Winchester let that one get out of their plant remains a mystery.
__________________
US Navy Distinguished Marksman Badge 153
Former US Navy & Palma Rifle Team Member
NRA High Power Master & Long Range High Master
NRA Smallbore Prone Master
Bart B. is offline  
Old September 20, 2014, 06:02 PM   #25
Slamfire
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 27, 2007
Posts: 4,808
Quote:
Can someone tell us just what type of material most mausers were made of
I sure you can answer that one yourself. You can find this with a web search and the information is in several books on Mausers.

Quote:
Very few modern rifle receivers were made of 4140.
Being a bookworm, I found, from books, that the pre 64 M70 was made from 4140, the M1 carbine receiver was made from 4140, and I recall reading the Ruger M77 was made of 4140. Now that leaves a lot of commercial receivers that I don’t have material specifications. Not extractors, but the structural stuff: bolts and receivers. Commercial manufacturers have no particular reason to educate the public by telling us what materials they use, so there is very little good information on this topic.

Being a practical man, not a bookworm, how about telling us something that will add to human knowledge? To your best extent possible, how about telling just what commercial receivers/bolts are made out of what steels?
__________________
If I'm not shooting, I'm reloading.
Slamfire is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:35 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2016 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.11506 seconds with 10 queries