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Thread: Basic gunsmithing advice please

  1. #1

    Basic gunsmithing advice please

    This is the second occasion in which I've entrusted my rifle to a supposed competent gunsmith, paid my hard earned money and been let down. A threading job that's a right bloody mess and on a fluted barrel to so can't just be chopped and started again. I'll sort it with him but I swear that this is the last time I'll do this.

    About a century ago I gained a degree in aero engineering and even longer than that spent some time on a lathe. I'm in no way an experienced metalworker nor even consider myself knowledgeable but with a bit of revision and training must be able to perform the basics like re-barreling and threading for myself.

    So can anyone recommend some books, videos or courses from which I can learn? Consider me a complete beginner as I intend to restart at the basics. i

    Any advice and guidance gratefully received.

  2. #2
    Practice, practice and repetition mate...you clearly have the aptitude! I've got a few books I'll look at where I got them and let you know!

  3. #3
    It's like riding a bike: you don't forget... You might find that once you get back on a lathe you know instinctively which way to wind the dials and it's all second nature.

  4. #4
    Just make sure you get a lathe of similar layout to what you were used to. British and American are reversed regards the saddle handle position.

    Oh and yes get a decent rigid lathe. Some of the newer ones are quire flimsy .................................. not good for reaming and threading. Also make sure the spindle has enough room through which to put a barrel. Some are too small and or a long enough bed to work a barrel between centres.

    Books check the dreaded bay for a copy of:-

    The NRA Gunsmithing Guide

    There is also:-

    ​The Master Gunmaker' Guide to Building Bolt Action Rifles by Bill Holmes.

  5. #5
    I have access to a couple of old Boxfords at work so can use them if searching for my own proves fruitless. They've just been serviced and remodernised by Boxfords.

  6. #6
    Here is how Mike Norris does it:

    He charges a fair price too.

    Maybe discuss it with him rather than let the original bodger have another go.

    Maybe a local college has evening classes or e.g. model engineering club to get you up to speed.
    Last edited by Sharpie; 18-03-2013 at 14:43.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Sharpie View Post
    Here is how Mike Norris does it:
    ..............yeah and he measures critical diametres with a digital caliper, anyone with proper training knows that they should be measured with a micrometer, just because digital calipers have a resolution of 0.01mm does not mean they can measure to that accuracy.

    Ian.
    Last edited by Whitebeard; 18-03-2013 at 17:26.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Whitebeard View Post
    ..............yeah and he measures vital diametres with a digital caliper, anyone with proper training knows that they should be measured with a micrometer, just because digital calipers have a resolution of 0.01mm does not mean they can measure to that accuracy.
    The important dimensions of the thread are determined by the thread profile, which does not end in a knife edge.

    When he measured the diameter at 14.00 mm with the caliper that was acceptable tolerance. You might also have noticed he gave it a little squeeze to get it to show .00, for the benefit of the camera

    Technically he should have cut it slightly smaller, i.e. 14.0 minus the tolerance of the caliper.

    The important bit was the depth to which he cut the thread, not the OD from where he started.

    ISO metric screw thread - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Mike uses proper gauges to check his threads are to tolerance, and the fit of the sacrificial collar he used during crowning is another check, which he alluded to.

    Lets not turn this into another knocking thread.

    A good workman knows how to use his tools efficiently, within their limitations, and doesn't fanny about making unnecessarily precise measurements.

    Cutting a thread is simple stuff. Cutting it in such a way that it does not affect rifle accuracy is slightly more complicated ,and it seems beyond the skills of many.

    I've even seen jobs done with a die, instead of a single point tool
    Last edited by Sharpie; 18-03-2013 at 18:13. Reason: toned it down

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Sharpie View Post
    Suggest you study ISO metric screw thread - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    I did 4 years of study mate including thread forms and how to cut them as an apprentice toolmaker 30 years ago.
    Over that 30 year preiod i have screwcut thousands of threads in all forms both externally and internally and to very tight classes of fits, less then .001" undersize and its in the scrap bin.


    A good workman knows how to use his tools efficiently, within their limitations, and doesn't fanny about making unnecessarily precise measurements.

    This last statement shows you have absolutely no idea my friend, the basis of precision engineering is to make as many precise measurements as you can to ensure an accurate result.

    Ian

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Jager SA View Post
    Practice, practice and repetition mate...you clearly have the aptitude! I've got a few books I'll look at where I got them and let you know!

    Agree with the above 100% books are great but decent equipment and hands on is the way to go!

    You don't need books really, take a trawl through youtube and the internet.....its all there in front of you!


    "A threading job that's a right bloody mess and on a fluted barrel"........ is it possible for you to supply a photo of the "DOGS DINNER"????
    Last edited by remmy700; 18-03-2013 at 18:29.
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