Remington 700 bolt hard to push down

nhenry

Beginner
Feb 7, 2022
186
274
Howdy

My 280AI's bolt has always been hard to push down (even when empty).

Anyone here able to diagnose the problem?


The first gun is my 7-08 for comparison
 

Blkram

Handloader
Nov 25, 2013
1,916
383
Have you checked it with Go-No Go gauges to ensure the barrel was installed properly?
My 300 WSM had a similar issue that was verified in this manner and had to have headspace reset.
 

nhenry

Beginner
Feb 7, 2022
186
274
Have you checked it with Go-No Go gauges to ensure the barrel was installed properly?
My 300 WSM had a similar issue that was verified in this manner and had to have headspace reset.
Yes, the barrel is installed well. It's like that with the old barrel and with no barrel as well.
 

AFG270

Handloader
Aug 26, 2013
829
162
If that's an after market trigger and you have the original you might try switching them and see if that helps.
 

ShadeTree

Handloader
Mar 6, 2017
2,741
1,122
Assuming it does the same removed from the stock? Hard to diagnose without being there to see and feel it when closing the bolt. It appears to close initially like it has a step or bump to get over, then free from there. Is that correct? If that is correct, do you feel that same bump or jump at the top of opening the bolt if you do it slow?
 

nhenry

Beginner
Feb 7, 2022
186
274
Assuming it does the same removed from the stock? Hard to diagnose without being there to see and feel it when closing the bolt. It appears to close initially like it has a step or bump to get over, then free from there. Is that correct? If that is correct, do you feel that same bump or jump at the top of opening the bolt if you do it slow?
It does that with nothing attached, though I haven't tried it without the trigger. So yes, you're correct. No, it opens just fine, so that's what I'm confused about
 

ShadeTree

Handloader
Mar 6, 2017
2,741
1,122
It does that with nothing attached, though I haven't tried it without the trigger. So yes, you're correct. No, it opens just fine, so that's what I'm confused about

If you say there's no visible wear on any parts that would make sense......lugs, front face of bolt handle, rear face of receiver, then it almost has to be confined to the bolt.

It could be the trigger, however if it's binding that hard on the sear, I can't see it wouldn't make other noticeable issues show up. But I could be wrong. Look for visible wear on the top of the sear, bottom of the cocking piece.

I'd disassemble the bolt and look closely at the notch the cocking piece sits in prior to the bolt rotating closed to the fire position that allows your cocking piece and firing pin to jump ahead into the deeper notch when you pull the trigger.

There's a good chance that notch the cocking piece sets in with the bolt removed, has a burr or step up bump in it that the cocking piece is having trouble jumping over on initial closing. I'm not a gunsmith by any means but have taken a lot of guns apart to work on, and I'm just spit balling here thinking out loud.

If it's nothing regarding the bolt lugs or action, then it has to be confined to the trigger or bolt. Should be easy to find. If you find nothing wrong with that notch, then when you disassemble the bolt, make sure the cocking piece moves freely front to rear. Make sure there's nothing inside the bolt body or on the retainers for the firing spring that's causing it to bind on initial firing spring compression. You'll find it. It's mechanical and there's always a reason.
 

IdahoCTD

Handloader
Nov 4, 2004
2,496
79
Remington was really good at messing up the notch the cocking piece sits in at the back of the bolt. I have had to fix tons of them that have had that notch rotated one way or another causing the cocking piece to drag as the bolt is cycled. I have also seen the notch cut too deep causing hard cocking like your experiencing. There are a few ways to fix it but the best approach is with a lathe and/or a mill, depending on what exactly is wrong.

Just to verify.....it doesn't do it with the firing pin removed?
 

ShadeTree

Handloader
Mar 6, 2017
2,741
1,122
Remington was really good at messing up the notch the cocking piece sits in at the back of the bolt. I have had to fix tons of them that have had that notch rotated one way or another causing the cocking piece to drag as the bolt is cycled. I have also seen the notch cut too deep causing hard cocking like your experiencing. There are a few ways to fix it but the best approach is with a lathe and/or a mill, depending on what exactly is wrong.

Just to verify.....it doesn't do it with the firing pin removed?

Sounds like you have experience with it. I was just mechanically figuring out in my head what would make the bolt close hard only at the top of the closing stroke. Good to know that it's a likely scenario. Hopefully it is something simple like that, that is obvious to him.
 

IdahoCTD

Handloader
Nov 4, 2004
2,496
79
The bolt opening is on the ramp where the cooking piece falls. Once the bolt is open the cooking piece sits in a notch in the back of the bolt body. If that notch is too deep it takes more effort to turn the bolt because the cooking piece has to back out of that notch to engage the sear on the trigger. Sometimes the edge of the notch can be tapered and that can really reduce the effort. Other times the back of the bolt between that notch and the cut where the firing pin falls needs to be cut or the whole back of the bolt can be shortened to allow the cooking piece to back out of the notch easier. In extreme situations the notch may have to be welded back up and the notch recut.
 
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