Gunsmithing

Educational Zone #111 – Restoring an Old Shotgun

I recently took my stepson Abel out to shoot shotguns, as he had never shot a shotgun at an aerial target before. We had fun, but the double barreled shotgun he was using was kind of heavy for him. I decided I’d be on the lookout for a nice 20 gauge single shot for his first shotgun. I went to visit my buddy Ted in Temple, Texas and he and I made our usual pawn shop visits, looking for deals. I saw a rack of shotguns [...]

Educational Zone #103 – Casting Lead Bullets – pt. 2 – Sizing and Lubricating

In part one, we cast some bullets. They were 510 grain .45-70 bullets with a groove for a gas check. Today I will show how we size and lubricate the bullets for reloading. The bullets drop from the mold slightly larger in diameter than needed. This is to allow them to be swedged down to the final diameter. In this case, the bullets drop at around .459 caliber, but we will swedge them down to the final diameter of .458, [...]

Educational Zone #102 – Casting Lead Bullets – pt. 1

I have had some friends ask me about how to go about casting lead bullets. So, today I cast some and took some pictures and thought I’d show you how it’s done. First, you might wonder why a person would want to go to the trouble to cast lead bullets. Some folks do it to save a little money, as cast bullets, if made from low-cost or free lead, are really cheap. But the main reason I do it is that I simply [...]

Educational Zone #13 – Shooting & Cleaning Corrosive Ammo

Some of you younger shooters may have never even heard of “corrosive ammo”. Ammo made before around mid-1950 used primers with mercuric salts in the priming compound in the primers. Upon firing this ammo, these corrosive salts were deposited all inside the barrel of the weapon.If these salts were not removed, they would attract moisture and corrode (rust) the inside of the barrel. Swabbing the barrel with oil [...]

Educational Zone #1 – Performing a System Check

I learned these techniques while attending Thunder Ranch. It is an excellent school and I would recommend it to anyone interested. In a gunfight, you may find yourself in a “lull” when the action has stopped. It may began again, without notice. In the mean time, you would want to do a “Tactical Reload.” This means to replace any partially loaded magazines with full ones. You do this while keeping [...]

Educational Zone #9 – Best Way to Clean a Shotgun

In my continuing struggle to present worthwhile subjects, I will teach you fellows how to clean a shotgun.First, make sure that it is empty. Then remove the barrel. Put the rest of the shotgun away. Spray WD-40 down the barrel. Do it from both ends. Scrub the barrel with a bore brush, if necessary. Select one (1) Tampax. Original, Regular is just right for a 12 Gauge. Remove the Tampax from the convenient holder. [...]

Educational Zone #5 – Solving Accuracy Problems with Handloading

Some of you may remember when I posted on AR15.com about finally finding and buying a clean 1917 Enfield. Mine is a great example of this weapon. I have seen many in museums that are not anywhere near as clean. The problem is that, like almost all examples of this rifle, the bore is pretty well shot. This rifle was manufactured and used during the days of corrosive primers, and the users usually didn’t wash the [...]
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