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Old October 8, 2017, 03:43 PM   #1
Swiftkill
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Winchester model 70 Post 64 Pushfeed bolt issues

First off, I apologize for this lengthy post but I figure with all of my comments in here it may help someone else who is searching the internet for any one of the key words or phrases they may be searching for.

Hi, I have a few model 70's. I am one of the few in my circle that really like Winchesters. My first bolt action was and is a Model 70 300 win mag. 1980 XTR. I just liked the way it looked and felt, especially the bolt knob, lift and cycling as compared to the remington 700. I suppose Jack O'connor didn't sway my decision either.

Well, anyway in 1994 I was looking for a varmint rifle and there were great reviews on the Winchester 70 HBV in .220 Swift and I bought that. It is an absolute Tackdriver. After 23 years and probably over 1500 rounds it is still a tackdriver. This has been my PET gun and go to gun forever. I have won a lot of shooting competitions (informal club shoots) and killed quite a few coyotes with this and prairie dogs. My longest confirmed prairie dog kill is 635 yds with this gun, with many over 500 yards.

Jump to my reason for this post: I had put a Timney Trigger in that gun back in 1994 and for all these years it has worked flawleessly. Last year I started having a problem, I sat at a Bench (fortunately, purposely and thoughtfully my muzzle was pointed down range) and when I closed the bolt my firing pin dropped and fired the round. I was stunned. I started experimenting and that started happening nearly everytime I closed the bolt (no longer with live rounds!). So, I thought my trigger was worn and that the sear was slipping. I tried adjusting the Timney trigger but had to raise the weight so much that I knew this was not the answer (or the problem). I noticed that my cocking piece on the firing pin was worn, like pretty gouged out. Long story short (too late for that), I contacted Timney and they didnt want to take a chance and sent me a brand new trigger at no charge. I installed that but it was not exactly drop in. The instructions say "on rare occasions the trigger may require fitting". My middle name is "Rare occasions". So, I had a local "gunsmith" (self-taught, but he is really a hack. He can do certain things, but he has no finnesse, doesn't plan or research). So, I had this local "gunsmith" try to help me and he filed down the necessary material to get the firing pin and safety to work, but the angle was hand cut and off and he did not burnish the surface. This seemed to work, for a minute, but one of the other problems is that the safety was not moving the firing pin back off the trigger sear (if you know how a 70 safety works), so with the safety "on" if I pulled the trigger it dropped the trigger sear so when I pushed the safety off the firing pin would drop. UGH!! I spoke with another gunsmith and we figured the firing pin may be worn (that cocking piece that rides over the top of the trigger sear). So, I tried to get a new firing pin. This short action pushfeed firing pin must be one of the most difficult gun parts in the history of guns to get. NOBODY has one. Winchester has changed hands and production so many times that they won't even talk to you about gunsmithing or how the parts work. They have Midwest Gunworks handle all of their old parts (except for mine of course). This is the first time I have really had a problem with my model 70's and this is a BIG ONE. Certainly has me re-thinking Winchester, though I still think their initial quality is better than Remington, but this lack of parts is a real game changer for me. In a big game rifle you'll probably never wear the gun out but with a Varmint rifle....I'm probably shooting 300-400 rounds a year now. In all fairness, the new Winchesters should have all of their parts available for many years if they plan better. Who knows where anybody will be in 20-40 or more years? Especially after the recent shooting in Vegas.

Back to my story.. I searched the MGW (Midwest gun works) website for my firing pin and could not find exactly what I thought I needed. There are 3 parts schematics for Pre 64 controlled round feed, Post 64 Push feed and post 64 Controlled round/pushfeed type models and the post 64s have Long and short actions.. BTW, I tried Numrich arms and at least 6 or 7 other obsolete and hard to find parts places, AND e-bay, gunbroker, gunsamerica, armslist, etc. trying to find this firing pin. So, I called MGW to have THEM pick my part using my serial #. The sales woman on the other end said, "this is the part for your gun", so I said ok. Friggin $89 plus shipping. $95 later, I got the firing pin. It looked like the right length, spacings etc. But I could not see my old firing pin with the spring surrounding the whole shaft. I decided to bring it to my new gunsmith. Not an expert on Winchesters, but could figure out anything. So he went to swap the firing pin and of course there was an issue.

The new firing pin did not have the long recess to accept the "firing pin stop screw". This firing pin was for a newer model. The schematic show the firing pin with the recess for the stop screw but the part I received did not have the recess. Even THEIR own parts do not coincide with the schematics they are referencing!!!.

My gunsmith and I decided to install the firing pin because I needed to get my gun together and could not get the exact same part and it was nowhere in the forseeable future. The "firing pin stop screw" has a shoulder that needs to be fully seated into the hole because this length of the bolt sleeve has to go into the rear of the receiver so the screw has to be flush with the sleeve. But, the nipple on the end of the screw contacts the firing pin shaft so the screw CANNOT go fully flush into the hole. I had to cut off the nipple so that I could insert the screw all the way.

I went to the range and everything works, flawlessly. In fact, my old firing pin was worn at the shoulder of the safety recess and the side of the firing pin tip was worn at one side where it passes through the firing pin hole in the bolt face. I noticed that my firing pin strikes were nearly dead center npow where they were a little off center from the worn firing pin. I guess I just got used to the slow change over time. Still, if I can find another firing pin I'd swap it out because I want it the way it should be.

I guess my Question here is: I don't see the purpose of the firing pin stop. It seems to be there as an additional safety to hold things together or maybe it prevents the firing pin from moving forward if the firing pin is struck externally from the rear? That looks like a 100% IMPOSSIBILITY. The other thing is after the firing pin spring is removed then the firing pin stop has to be removed to remove the firing pin from the shroud. This seems like a very elaborate feature to keep a firing pin from falling out during disassembly. So, does anyone know what that firing pin stop screw is for? It seems to have been eliminated in newer models! Anyway, my world is good again, so far.

Thank you for listening.

Mike C.
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File Type: jpg 20170921_014658r.jpg (162.6 KB, 28 views)

Last edited by Swiftkill; October 8, 2017 at 04:08 PM. Reason: Add Photos
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Old October 8, 2017, 04:05 PM   #2
Swiftkill
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Additional Winchester 70 firing pin photos

Additional photos
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File Type: jpg 20170908_112009r.jpg (63.3 KB, 26 views)
File Type: jpg 20170921_014723r.jpg (152.5 KB, 20 views)
File Type: jpg 20171003_221843_002r.jpg (153.3 KB, 15 views)
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Old October 9, 2017, 11:00 AM   #3
4V50 Gary
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Not familiar with it at all. Do you have Stuart Otteson's The Bolt Action Rifle (Vol I & II)? It may describe the pin in there.
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Old October 10, 2017, 01:33 AM   #4
Swiftkill
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Not at all. This is not a firing pin stop! It is a firing pin stop screw! I have been to the range and fired the gun at least 15 rounds. The firing pin strikes are perfect...actually perfect. Better than the other firing pin. And Damn if my repeatability didn't improve... probably because of the more uniform strike. The firing pin stop screw does not even touch the firing pin under normal conditions. There is absolutely no wear mark on the firing pin. Thanks.. Next.
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Old October 10, 2017, 01:34 AM   #5
Swiftkill
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If somebody actually has owned a model 70. I was hoping an experienced gunsmith with experience working on the Winchester model 70 would see this post. Thank you.
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Old October 10, 2017, 10:45 PM   #6
Scorch
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The screw is technically not a stop screw, it is a retaining or limiting screw. It fits into a cut out portion of the firing pin body (shown by the tip of the firing pin in your photo) and keeps the firing pin in the bolt shroud if you remove the spring.
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Old October 19, 2017, 02:48 PM   #7
F. Guffey
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A friend/smith built rifles in the old days, he trained/taught smiths to weld and to operated latches and mills out of one of Texas's universities. It had nothing to do with unfinished work but he had problems with rifles he build 45 + years ago, he asked me to check them out. 2 of them would fire when the bolt was closed, This only happened when the receiver was installed in the stock. The wood stock did a little traveling in the years after he built the rifles, I opened up the stock to give the triggers clearance to solve the problem.

The 3rd rifle had an owner inflected problem. He changed the scope thinking there was no skill required. He Removed a long tube scope and replaced it with a short tubed scope, the rings were too close to gather so he opened the rings and installed the rings on the bells.

F. Guffey

Last edited by F. Guffey; October 19, 2017 at 03:23 PM.
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Old October 19, 2017, 03:19 PM   #8
F. Guffey
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Quote:
If somebody actually has owned a model 70. I was hoping an experienced gunsmith with experience working on the Winchester model 70 would see this post. Thank you.
I sent a Winchester Model 70 Winchester back to Winchester. Sending it back was not my plan but my friend the warranty repair man sent it back without asking me what I wanted to do. The rifle had the ugliest chamber I have ever seen, I informed Winchester the chamber was too long and too large in diameter and the chamber was gouged. The warranty man said he would hone it, polish it and then he also had the option of reaming. (long story). I asked him to describe how reaming, polishing and or honing is going to shorten the chamber and reduce the diameter of the chamber.

Winchester had the rifle for so long I believe they were hoping I would forget they had it, but; that did not happen. I explained to them I had barrels that would fit the rifle, I suggested they sent me a bolt for the 30/06 family of chambers, I asked them to make a set of dies to fit my chamber or a barrel with a chamber that would fit my dies.

Anyhow, they returned the rifle in a new box. After 15 years I decided I would take the rifle to the range, I loaded 100 rounds of 300 Win mag with one box of new over the counter factory loaded ammo, Before leaving the house for the range I attempted to chamber the new, factory, over the counter ammo and the bolt would not close on new ammo. And I wondered, if the bolt will not close on factory ammo how did they test fire the rifle before returning the rifle in the new box.

I propped the rifle up in a corner and gave my son the 100 rounds. Closing the bolt was not a problem when the rifle was returned to Winchester. Later I removed the bolt, the rifle had no more than 120 rounds fired through it, when I inspected the bolt I discovered the extractor would not jump the rim on a push feed bolt, It will now.

I worked on the bolt and now the extractor works like a push feed rifle.

Anyhow, the rifle comes with warnings and cautions: Do not mess with the trigger. I would suggest you remove the stock then while there is nothing in the chamber attempt to open and close the bolt.

F. Guffey
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