Dads Mauser - Bedding and other things- pics added

cloverleaf

Handloader
Sep 10, 2006
3,971
360
Well- I'll start out by saying that this is intimidating. I started by cleaning a couple rifles last week. With the barrel cleaned w/ wipe out I took the action out of the stock to check for rust and update the Eezox. That's when I noticed some spots on the left side of the barrel where the bluing was worn off under the stock. The old dollar bill would fit randomly in the barrel channel. Some places very tight and some places wide open, for example under the chamber,

A few years before he died, Dad had decided that the barrel was "shot out" because he could not duplicate its once very reasonable accuracy. Groups were eractic and opened up considerably from what he remembered. I remember as a kid that a soup can at 100yards didn't stand a chance. I was able to talk him into trying some "Wipe out" but he never really went back and tried it for accuracy to my knowledge. I have since shot some 3-4 inch groups with it. Given the Heavy trigger pull, the fact that the stock is too long for me, reloads of questionable pedigree, the 4x Weaver, and the fact that the rifle intimidates the heck out of me, I'm OK with it, for now. But it would be fun to see what the old girl will do.
So with time finally on my hands and what seems to me to be some evidence that the barrel is bearing unevenly, I begin.



So Far:
I have opened up the barrel channel with a dowel and sand paper to the point where in now "free floats" all the way back to the action. (No choice there was no support under the chamber at all...) Sealed that up w/ three coats of urethane.



Action definitely sets down into the mortise for the recoil lug, but maybe seems loose. Accra Glass gel arrived today so the plan is to bed the Lug and chamber area. The front isn't to tough, but given the current situation I cant just run to the hardware store for a pillar for the rear. Stuck at home.



1. Would you try and remove some wood to bed the rear action screw and how much? Most recent issue of OL suggests just drilling out the rear screw hole and glassing all the way around the bolt rather than using the pillar. Again really intimidated by removing the wood. Dad pretty much wouldn't even let me hold that rifle. It was too much for me, and he knew it. I didn't shoot it until several years after he passed. Intimidated...

2. how far forward would you start bedding the barrel? Shade Tree just posted a great read about his Mauser in 22-250. I wont have the time resources to use his "plumber putty" trick to experiment w/ the barrel bedding like he did.. Anybody want to volunteer a opinion on a short cut?

3. Would you bed the bottom metal at this point? Seems to fit snugly, or just the barrel and shoot it first?

4. would you bed them both, or separately and in what order?

I know there are hundreds of videos out there on how to bed an action etc. but looking for some real experience. And want to share my effort. Pics will follow, eventually. Thanks for the thoughts. CL
 

ShadeTree

Handloader
Mar 6, 2017
2,901
1,563
CL. Don't worry about pillars. None of my rifles have them. Don't worry about barrel bedding. My Mauser was a unique circumstance because of a heavy bull barrel. Maybe 3/4" to 1" out in front of the recoil lug is all you would need, if that.

My first advice is to GO SLOW. And I don't just mean during the actual work, but just as importantly or maybe more so, GO SLOW in what you decide to do. Especially since it sounds like this is a new venture. The rifle has been in it's previous state for years, it doesn't need revamped by next week.

I'm a little worried for you as this is going to be a pretty involved process. Bedding Mauser's is a PIA compared to other rifles. I'll try to help you where I can, but some things can't be properly explained with words on a screen.

Couple of questions. Is this a 98 or 93 style Mauser. In other words large ring, or small ring?

Also, might I suggest trying it first since you've free floated the barrel? If it had severe pressure points along the barrel channel, that will change things drastically right off the bat. Could shoot as bad as it did, could shoot worse, or could show dramatic improvement.
 

ShadeTree

Handloader
Mar 6, 2017
2,901
1,563
P.S. My advice to go slow is in part because you've already got ahead of yourself IMO. I would've provided clearance in the barrel channel like you done, but left the pressure point in, up front for now.

That would've left the proper height in place if you decide to go ahead with the bedding. Now you will have to put rounds of tape on the barrel and remove tape as necessary taking the barreled action in and out of the stock until it sits just like it needs to without any up words pressure on the barrel, and not hanging.
 

gbflyer

Handloader
Mar 28, 2017
910
87
Parallel action to stock surface contact. The only perpendicular surface you want contacting is the lug. They are quite a bit of work to do correctly.
 

ShadeTree

Handloader
Mar 6, 2017
2,901
1,563
gbflyer":24at3jjm said:
Parallel action to stock surface contact. The only perpendicular surface you want contacting is the lug. They are quite a bit of work to do correctly.

You better believe it. Skim bedding is another matter, but to truly bed a rifle and have the job turn out as intended takes some forethought, work, and taking your time. Lots of fuss work.

There is a reason the 2 Smith's in this area worth any salt, charge more for a bedding job than they do to set back a barrel and re-chamber.
 

cloverleaf

Handloader
Sep 10, 2006
3,971
360
Thanks Guys- Like I said- intimidating...and I appreciate the advice. As you say, I may have the cart before the horse in opening the channel. You can see the rub marks on the right side of the barrel in the photo above. I have included some photos of the bedding as it currently is. To me it doesn't look to bad for a 60 plus year old 7 Mag (Commercial Mauser 98) that in its day got shot pretty consistently for a guy working rotating shifts and raising a family.

The front could probably fit a little tighter, but not by much and it all looks pretty solid.


The rear may have a little oil incursion, but seems very solid and has good solid impressions from the tang.

Given my "you-tube research" ( I bet it was 6 hours +) today I don't think I would touch it.


I get why you suggest they are a challenge...you cant do much re bedding the tang w/o doing a lot.

One note, The stock had a "ridge" under the chamber area that Dad must have sanded out at some earlier point. There was some pressure under the barrel about half way up the stock but it was mostly from the right side, There was no support under the chamber before I started. Still isn't... you can see it as the lighter colored wood in the center just forward of the action. At this point I think that would be all I would try and bed...but I should probably shoot it now that the barrel is free. As you point out one thing at a time. But now I will have to wait.... :roll: :twisted:

Any more thoughts...are appreciated. CL
 

ShadeTree

Handloader
Mar 6, 2017
2,901
1,563
CL, you're wise to try it like it is since opening up the barrel channel, and having second thoughts on bedding.

I don't want to discourage you or rain or your parade, nobody would've stopped me from doing my first one because I wanted to learn. But my first one wasn't a Mauser, and I'm telling you, as involved and as much of a PIA as it is to bed a regular rifle, add more to that on a Mauser.

If a rifle shoots well as it is, you could lock it in easy enough with skim bedding. At least that's how I view it.

However if attempting to change and improve a rifles accuracy due in part, or in whole, to bedding, it involves removing quite a bit of stock material.

That process to end up right, is way more involved than simply removing stock material and replacing it with bedding. Way more. There's no way to sugar coat it, it just is. Not trying to discourage you. Only you can decide what you want to do, but those are the bare facts.
 

Blkram

Handloader
Nov 25, 2013
1,979
525
With the barrel now free floated, I would see how it performs; if the groups are better great!
If not, then you could try to shim the front of the barrel with a business card to give some upwards pressure where the old shim/pressure point used to be, and try again. Can try one, then two business cards to see what happens.

As for the 7mm intimidation; try making up some safe, reduced loads for it to try and see how that changes things. You may find a load that the rifle will prefer, and that you will enjoy shooting more, that duplicates 280 Rem performance. Then you'll be able to enjoy your Dad's old rifle even more!

Best of luck!
 

RaySendero

Beginner
Jul 27, 2015
233
1
I use aluminum duct tape when I want to add and experiment with barrel pressure points.
You should be able to get some from a local hardware store.
 

ShadeTree

Handloader
Mar 6, 2017
2,901
1,563
CL, you've gotten some good advice above on some things to try.

I'll add another and it will be good practice for 1 of the steps needed in bedding.

Cut pieces of electrical tape to put on the recoil lug. When bedding you will put 1 piece of tape (or at least I do) on the front, sides, and bottom of the recoil lug that will be removed after bedding to provide minimal clearance in those areas. Back of the lug, no tape.

In this instance you will tape the back of the lug, and do that first. The rear will be easier because it's straight edges. Start with 2-3 pieces, put the action in the stock and see if you can feel any wiggle yet. Keep adding until it goes in tight, then remove 1 piece.

You can also add tape to the front. This will take some practice tries to get it right, but pull out a strip of tape, take a small pill bottle and place it about 2/3 of the way across the tape. With a sharp knife trace out the circumference of the pill bottle. This will leave you with a piece of tape that will follow the contour of the front receiver ring, with a straight edge on top. Just like the shape of the lug up front. Trim all excess.

Not a long term solution, but I've seen rifles really tighten up with this method, and it shows you if accuracy problems are bedding related.
 

cloverleaf

Handloader
Sep 10, 2006
3,971
360
Well- I will be waiting a while if I decide to bed. Temps are dropping and working in the garage, that complicates things. Believe it or not Im out of electrical tape and I am trying to be a good boy and stay out of the stores..... I want that and some putty (out of that too) or clay before I start.
Doing some wood working in stead that just happens to need a crack patched. Good practice instead. More details later... Thanks all for the advice. CL
 

cloverleaf

Handloader
Sep 10, 2006
3,971
360
Well- I haven't got around to shooting Dads rifle yet. Between the "situation" and my bad shoulder I cant crank up the energy or decide that its a good thing to do so just yet. However, I have done some work w/accra-glass. The "apple" below was turned by my father some years ago. Whether it cracked on the lathe or from sitting and drying out I do not know. I did the sanding and added some pieces so that the top "locks" in place with a 1/4 turn. (Iwonder if that's what Dad intended??) I put some tape down the outside of the surface and attempted to press the glass through the crack from the inside in an effort to keep the glass from expanding over the grain on the outside and having to sand that out.
That was successful but the surface of the glass, of course followed the tape exactly and so was a little low in places. it also took on the texture of the adhesive on the tape, most of which I was able to sand out. Aside from that, it appears an excellent bond and very solid.
I also used the accra-glaas to mend the break in a plastic vacuum cleaner hose (y) . Rock solid for the first time in years! :grin:

PS- I really should have had some cherry stain. Since Im staying "safe" at home, had to settle for red mahogany. Still looks OK for a piece of buck thorn stump. (y) CL



web picture hosting

Sorry - cant get that one turned.... and the LARGE size shows off my errors. :lol: Sorry
 

gerry

Ammo Smith
Mar 1, 2007
6,113
11
Nice work Troy, looks great and a good test on the bedding compound :lol: The stain looks great too.
 

Dr. Vette

Handloader
Apr 16, 2012
1,333
65
Do not put any tape under the bottom of the front recoil lug!!
The front action screw comes out from there, and you want the bottom of the lug to rest on epoxy.

The action is very similar to the Howa/Vanguard.

You can bed just the front recoil lug without much effort, and I suspect you need do nothing else.
If you bed the rear you MUST put 3 layers of tape around the back of the action so it can move backward a tiny bit, and not act like a second recoil lug. You only bed under the rear action screw, not behind it/the action.

Shoot it as-is, and if not satisfied I'd just do the front lug as the next step. That should be more than enough.
 

Cleveland48

Handloader
Jul 28, 2015
1,939
65
Dr. Vette":2dnwaylf said:
Do not put any tape under the bottom of the front recoil lug!!
The front action screw comes out from there, and you want the bottom of the lug to rest on epoxy.

The action is very similar to the Howa/Vanguard.

You can bed just the front recoil lug without much effort, and I suspect you need do nothing else.
If you bed the rear you MUST put 3 layers of tape around the back of the action so it can move backward a tiny bit, and not act like a second recoil lug. You only bed under the rear action screw, not behind it/the action.

Shoot it as-is, and if not satisfied I'd just do the front lug as the next step. That should be more than enough.
I have bedded two 98 mauser rifles and two howa's. Like Dr. Vette I did not put tape on the bottom of the recoil lug. I had great success with all four rifles.

Sent from my SM-N960U using Tapatalk
 

ShadeTree

Handloader
Mar 6, 2017
2,901
1,563
Dr. Vette":3tunuvuu said:
Do not put any tape under the bottom of the front recoil lug!!
The front action screw comes out from there, and you want the bottom of the lug to rest on epoxy.

The action is very similar to the Howa/Vanguard.

You can bed just the front recoil lug without much effort, and I suspect you need do nothing else.
If you bed the rear you MUST put 3 layers of tape around the back of the action so it can move backward a tiny bit, and not act like a second recoil lug. You only bed under the rear action screw, not behind it/the action.

Shoot it as-is, and if not satisfied I'd just do the front lug as the next step. That should be more than enough.

I haven't bedded 5 Mausers one way, and 5 another to know all the pro's and con's of each to argue the differences. But this flea market 98 Mauser I picked up and bedded with a taped off bottom recoil lug might argue if it could talk, that it certainly didn't hurt.

 

Dr. Vette

Handloader
Apr 16, 2012
1,333
65
If you put tape under the lug you leave space between the lug and the action screw. When you then tighten the screw you're putting stress on the action as you pull it down that little bit. You don't want stress on the action so it is recommended not to place tape under the lug on Mausers, Howas, Vanguards, Weatherbys, and those of similar design with the action screw in the recoil lug.
 

ShadeTree

Handloader
Mar 6, 2017
2,901
1,563
Dr. Vette":3v54yjeb said:
If you put tape under the lug you leave space between the lug and the action screw. When you then tighten the screw you're putting stress on the action as you pull it down that little bit. You don't want stress on the action so it is recommended not to place tape under the lug on Mausers, Howas, Vanguards, Weatherbys, and those of similar design with the action screw in the recoil lug.

I understand that, you're not wrong about your point as it relates to the Mauser design, and I wont argue the merits of what you're saying.

However the counter argument is that you cannot expect a following shot to impact the same spot as the previous shot, unless that recoil lug and action is allowed to freely return to battery even if the movement was ever so slight under recoil, so it's sitting in the exact same spot as before, with the same lateral, vertical, and perpendicular pressures on it as it had the shot before.

I have another synthetic stocked 98 Mauser that I just got done reinforcing the stock, and am getting ready to bed it. I'm willing to try your method of not taping the bottom of the recoil lug on this one.

If it works well enough I'll be happy. Because of the Mauser design, taping the bottom of the lug in a precise and neat manner is a royal pain.
 

Dr. Vette

Handloader
Apr 16, 2012
1,333
65
It's not a matter of returning to where it was before, it's a matter of inducing stress on the action.

The only time I have purposely placed stress on an action for a bedding job is the 338-06 rifle I described in another thread recently - and I didn't tape the bottom of that lug either as I want it to return to the same spot after any removal of the barreled action.
 
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