Winchester 70 Classic Build Mods

gbflyer

Handloader
Mar 28, 2017
888
50
I figured it would be better to start a new thread instead of derailing jezzolo’s 300 win mag build.

I’ve owned 3 of these over the years, all lefties, one standard and 2 mags. 2 got away from me, I still have one. I got the 300 H&H bug sometime back, still waiting on a barrel and will update that thread when I have more parts.

Anyway, I hope to pass on some useful information for those considering the action for a build.

The factory sent out the 300 Win Mags with the standard length 3.4 mag box, that is to say the same length as 30-06, 7RM, 338 WM, etc. The 7STW was sent out with the 3.6 length H&H length mag box. They also opened the ejection port to the rear, making the rear scope base holes closer together than the standard. This can cause frustration when ordering scope bases.

In my opinion, putting the 300 WM in the standard length action was a mistake, especially if one is to take advantage of all the case capacity the WM offers and wishes to use the LR bullets that are all the rage. Why else use a 300WM, right?[emoji1]My good buddy has one, and he can’t get within .200 of the lands due to mag box length, so his rifle is basically a single shot. With the pre-64, it’s a big deal to remedy. With the Classic, it’s still some work but much more do-able.

If one desires to leave the action alone for collector value, or if using long skinny bullets successfully to full value in your 300WM is not a concern then stop here. I’ve learned a few things that make them work. I write this only because of everything I’ve read that says this is a plug and play modification. This was NOT my experience at all...

The 1st thing to do is remove the block in the rear of the “ML” mag box. It is spot welded in 6 places. The spot welds can be drilled out with a good center punch mark and careful drilling. Go slow. Or if you can find an E box, that works too. Last I checked they were available from Midwest Gunworks. Also, the bolt stop and ejector blade will have to be shortened, I believe by about .100 but don’t use that number as gospel. You might get lucky here and have a rifle that feeds correctly without any further work. For me, Murphy rules so I had to go deeper into the job by milling the feed rails aft another .200 or so to clear the belt on the case. This is not rocket science and can be done with a Dremel with a small carbide burr or a mill. Proceed with extreme caution though or you will have a single shot. Additionally, there is a square “bump” machined into the rear of the mag box opening that may also give your follower problems. This bump is about half thickness on the H&H length actions with a ramp cut starting at the edge of the middle action screw. Again with Murphy ruling the day, my standard magnum follower would not work so I had to source a H and H length from Sunny Hill Enterprises as the factory 7STW length is unavailable. The Sunny Hill is a work of art, and they are an awesome company to deal with. Pricy at $50. Finally, after all that, I had to change to a Remington 700 follower spring and the angle of the feed ramp as the bolt was riding over the cartridge in the magazine.

This will get you a 3.6 mag length that feeds right. If you really want to take advantage of the cartridge, Wyatt’s Outdoors makes a box that goes to 3.8. With this you can have a rifle that feeds with Jeff Brozovich’s famous 300WM reamer pattern for 215 Berger hybrids which end up at 3.7-ish LOA.

So my advice is this for everyone who stuck with this boring write up: if you want a 300 mag in a Winchester 70, use the 30-338 wildcat or 308 Norma. Both are near identical and with a reamer with .100 leade, one can get pretty close to the lands with a ELD. Mine (Remington 700 action) has a .120 leade, and rides the lands at 3.5 OAL with the 212 ELDX, and yields 2850fps with IMR4350. That’s about as good as a 300 WM. Down side is that you’ll be reloading everything.

If you want to stretch one out, Lee Christianson in WI is one of the best Model 70 smiths around.

Wow, done[emoji1]
 

truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,887
180
gdflyer I don't doubt your word one bit if your using the classic control feed bolt style action .
But if you are using a post 64 push feed all you need is the E mag box and a H&H bolt stop.
I used the follower for the ML box and magazine spring and just changed the mag box and bolt stop and can reach the lands with room to spare in the mag box. Just tweaked the mag box lips so the follower wouldn't try and roll over.
Granted I haven't tried the super long skinny bullets Burger makes yet but couldn't reach the lands with anything I tried in it prior to changing the mag box and bolt stop.
 

gbflyer

Handloader
Mar 28, 2017
888
50
truck driver":3bdos0wa said:
gdflyer I don't doubt your word one bit if your using the classic control feed bolt style action .
But if you are using a post 64 push feed all you need is the E mag box and a H&H bolt stop.
I used the follower for the ML box and magazine spring and just changed the mag box and bolt stop and can reach the lands with room to spare in the mag box. Just tweaked the mag box lips so the follower wouldn't try and roll over.
Granted I haven't tried the super long skinny bullets Burger makes yet but couldn't reach the lands with anything I tried in it prior to changing the mag box and bolt stop.

That’s good info. I’ve never fooled with a push feed M70 but there’s no reason why they wouldn’t make a fine shooter. It’s easy to see why they went to the Remington style push feed, and why so many custom actions follow suit. So, so many less components. Don’t get me wrong, I like the Mauser -style a lot, it’s really quite fascinating to think about all that’s happening with one of them.
 

Europe

Handloader
Jun 18, 2014
1,125
94
Good information for those who feel they need something more than a 300 H & H in a mid-caliber rifle and/or believing a push feed works as well as a CRF.

I have hunted animals on 5 continents with a 300 H & H and I am assuming that over the years these animals have grown harder to hunt and have also grown thicker/tougher skin, as it seems everyone these days needs more power and distance.

I might also mention that when a Cape buffalo, Elephant, Lion, Hippo or even Grizzly is headed your way the thought that a push feed "works a good as a CRF-most of the time", it is the "most of the time" part of that statement that gives one pause. This is not just about standing on ones head when recycling a round, but the heat/dust/load is also a concern

There are so many clones of the mauser 98 on the market, it must have had something right going for it. For me the Mauser 98 and/or Model 70-pre 64 action will be on all my rifles--wait, except for my doubles, and the Weatherby, they are. And the Weatherby action is not chopped liver either, IMHO.

GBFLYER and Rodger --Wasn't the Model 70 made for the magnum round ?

Just thought I would drop in and say hi guys LOL

gbflyer, best of luck on the build sir
 

gbflyer

Handloader
Mar 28, 2017
888
50
Europe":p0iyielw said:
Good information for those who feel they need something more than a 300 H & H in a mid-caliber rifle and/or believing a push feed works as well as a CRF.

I have hunted animals on 5 continents with a 300 H & H and I am assuming that over the years these animals have grown harder to hunt and have also grown thicker/tougher skin, as it seems everyone these days needs more power and distance.

I might also mention that when a Cape buffalo, Elephant, Lion, Hippo or even Grizzly is headed your way the thought that a push feed "works a good as a CRF-most of the time", it is the "most of the time" part of that statement that gives one pause. This is not just about standing on ones head when recycling a round, but the heat/dust/load is also a concern

There are so many clones of the mauser 98 on the market, it must have had something right going for it. For me the Mauser 98 and/or Model 70-pre 64 action will be on all my rifles--wait, except for my doubles, and the Weatherby, they are. And the Weatherby action is not chopped liver either, IMHO.

GBFLYER and Rodger --Wasn't the Model 70 made for the magnum round ?

Just thought I would drop in and say hi guys LOL

gbflyer, best of luck on the build sir

Thanks for dropping in, your experience is always very appreciated. I’m with ya when it comes to CRF and quarry that bites, although one well known SE AK bear guide uses a rusty old Winchester 70 push feed 458win mag for bear back up and has for decades. We don’t have too much dust to contend with here, which is a condition we generally overlook.

Winchester did build H&H magnum length CRF Model 70’s and still do. This should have been the length for all the magnum chamberings, maybe with the exception of .338 and .458. Instead they used the 3.4 length. I understand that every pre-64 70 H&H length receiver that went out the door started as the standard length and was hand machined to H&H length and the necessary parts hand fitted. The tale goes on to say Winchester lost money on every one of those.
 

truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,887
180
Europe":1pv0p7w1 said:
Good information for those who feel they need something more than a 300 H & H in a mid-caliber rifle and/or believing a push feed works as well as a CRF.

I have hunted animals on 5 continents with a 300 H & H and I am assuming that over the years these animals have grown harder to hunt and have also grown thicker/tougher skin, as it seems everyone these days needs more power and distance.

I might also mention that when a Cape buffalo, Elephant, Lion, Hippo or even Grizzly is headed your way the thought that a push feed "works a good as a CRF-most of the time", it is the "most of the time" part of that statement that gives one pause. This is not just about standing on ones head when recycling a round, but the heat/dust/load is also a concern

There are so many clones of the mauser 98 on the market, it must have had something right going for it. For me the Mauser 98 and/or Model 70-pre 64 action will be on all my rifles--wait, except for my doubles, and the Weatherby, they are. And the Weatherby action is not chopped liver either, IMHO.

GBFLYER and Rodger --Wasn't the Model 70 made for the magnum round ?

Just thought I would drop in and say hi guys LOL

gbflyer, best of luck on the build sir
Hi April,
I have 3 push feed type M70s and one of those is a CRPF that was originally chqambered for the 30-06 but designed for the WSM cartridges.
My 300 Wm and my 7mm Rem are both push feed and both magnum but Winchester had different magazine boxes, bolt stops and Extractors for different length cartridges till FN took over production and made short actions.
You mentioned the Weatherby and If I'm not mistaken it is a push feed action.
 

ldg397

Handloader
Sep 27, 2007
302
2
Very interesting read thank you. So you think in a standard length action a 308 Norma would be preferable to the 300 wm. Could you elaborate on that some.

I really think I am leaning 308 Norma but when you sit down and look at the pros and cons as I know them as far as ammo and component availability and performance the edge goes to 300 wm maybe by a slim margin on some items but still does. All but cool factor lol
 

gbflyer

Handloader
Mar 28, 2017
888
50
ldg397":1efmblj9 said:
Very interesting read thank you. So you think in a standard length action a 308 Norma would be preferable to the 300 wm. Could you elaborate on that some.

I really think I am leaning 308 Norma but when you sit down and look at the pros and cons as I know them as far as ammo and component availability and performance the edge goes to 300 wm maybe by a slim margin on some items but still does. All but cool factor lol

I do think the 308 Norma is preferable in a standard length Model 70 Classic. The 308 Norma’s case overall is .060 shorter, while the neck is .050 longer. This is what the 300 WM should have been to start with but I guess Winchester had to be different [emoji1]. If I had plans for a long mag box, like the Wyatts, I would probably do a 300WM just for ease of ammo availability. Take my advice with a grain of salt though, I am a glutton for punishment when it comes to off the wall chamberings.

You can neck .338WM brass down for 308 Norma. I think there is one or two factory loadings but my guess is they’re hard to come by on this side of the pond. Also, a SAAMI 308 Norma leade is going to be long. If you’re going full custom, load a couple of dummies with the bullet you want to use at mag length less about .020 and send them to Dave Manson Precision and he’ll make you a reamer that fits. I’ll buy the reamer from you when you’re done.
 

Europe

Handloader
Jun 18, 2014
1,125
94
GBflyer and Rodger, thanks guys

Rodger, you are correct and I never took a Weatherby to Africa or Alaska.

Gbflyer--My husband took a 458 lott with a pre 64 model 70 action to Kodiak. I took a "lowly" 375 H & H with a mauser action.

Guys, seriously, much is made out of the push vs crf and there are a lot of push feed rifles that hunt dangerous game in Africa. However, it just didn't make any sense to me not to have something that would work every time over "should" work every time. Hunting on the equator, it is HOT and DUSTY and those two mixed with pressure , do create problems---not often --but !

PLUS, IMHO nothing chambers and ejected any better than a 300 H & H in a mauser action--smoother AND faster ( and faster can also be important.

Gbflyer, I have heard the same story about them losing money on every one and have a feeling it is true. But regardless those that did get out the door were nice--rifles and actions. My husband had my 300 ( and 375 ) custom made for me and in both instances he had them use mauser 98 actions, since that time the family have bought Win 70, pre 64 300 H & H rifles off the used rack and have not heard any complaints from family members .
Back to your original post. You have a 300 H & H desire and was curious why you didn't just get a mauser 98 ( obvious the large one--I am forgetting the exact technical term for each of the different sized mauser action's, one of the hazards of old age) Just curious sir ?

p.s. I think the standard, but can not remember if the Germans used the same definition, I could look it up I guess --lol
 

gbflyer

Handloader
Mar 28, 2017
888
50
Europe":26o6ez4v said:
GBflyer and Rodger, thanks guys

Rodger, you are correct and I never took a Weatherby to Africa or Alaska.

Gbflyer--My husband took a 458 lott with a pre 64 model 70 action to Kodiak. I took a "lowly" 375 H & H with a mauser action.

Guys, seriously, much is made out of the push vs crf and there are a lot of push feed rifles that hunt dangerous game in Africa. However, it just didn't make any sense to me not to have something that would work every time over "should" work every time. Hunting on the equator, it is HOT and DUSTY and those two mixed with pressure , do create problems---not often --but !

PLUS, IMHO nothing chambers and ejected any better than a 300 H & H in a mauser action--smoother AND faster ( and faster can also be important.

Gbflyer, I have heard the same story about them losing money on every one and have a feeling it is true. But regardless those that did get out the door were nice--rifles and actions. My husband had my 300 ( and 375 ) custom made for me and in both instances he had them use mauser 98 actions, since that time the family have bought Win 70, pre 64 300 H & H rifles off the used rack and have not heard any complaints from family members .
Back to your original post. You have a 300 H & H desire and was curious why you didn't just get a mauser 98 ( obvious the large one--I am forgetting the exact technical term for each of the different sized mauser action's, one of the hazards of old age) Just curious sir ?

p.s. I think the standard, but can not remember if the Germans used the same definition, I could look it up I guess --lol

Hi Europe,

I am using the Winchester 70 Classic for the 300 H&H build due to the fact that it’s the most affordable (other than the more modern Ruger 77), left hand CRF we can come up with here in the States, and I’m a lefty. There is a Zastava built Mauser copy I understand is worthy, and our Canadian neighbours seem to have a good line on them. I can’t seem to find one here though. The other cool, classically - styled southpaw CRF option that I am aware of is a full custom action from Granite Mountain in AZ. That one starts at $4K for the receiver.

Now if someone would produce a double that I could afford I’d forgo all this nostalgic effort. That would be the ultimate in cool. [emoji1]
 

Europe

Handloader
Jun 18, 2014
1,125
94
that makes sense. I also looked at the Granite mtn once--nice actions, ridiculous price--I passed

It is so nice that you have the knowledge and ability to do it, Enjoy the built and the finished rifle .
 

SJB358

Ballistician
Dec 24, 2006
31,304
564
I’m one of the biggest Model 70 fans on here but the 3.6 mag box is a ginormous pain in the butt if you wanna shoot the long Bullets we have today. I have been through it a few times with the 300 Win and Wby. Even breaking a 70 out and getting to 3.6 makes it ok but it just doesn’t allow a bunch of room to work seating the bullet out to the lands. Plus in a Wby or H&H the long Bullets are loaded so darned short it drives me nuts.

Those long magnum cases need a 3.7 or better yet 3.8 to really utilize the heavies out there. With a 300 RUM, Wby or H&H even the danged 200 Accubonds need to be seated so darned deep you don’t get leeway in regards to bullet seating. In those cases, the 300 Win Mag makes the most sense to utilize the mag room and give some leeway in a 70 action.

I was all set to build a 300 Wby on the 70 and unless I was willing to machine it to get a longer mag box in there it didn’t make sense. If I was shooting Partitions or similar then it’d probably be fine.

Good luck, I love monkeying around with the old 70’s and agree, wished all the 70’s in the magnums came with 3.6 boxes.. even the old 338 would be wicked with the new 250-280 grain bullets out there.
 

ldg397

Handloader
Sep 27, 2007
302
2
I was planning on using my stainless classic series model 70 in 7 mag. It has already been bedded in a mcswirley with a pacific tool and gauge single piece bottom metal and a Williams forged extractor. It is well used by me and very smooth action. It has a swarovski z5 in S&K rings and bases.

I was looking at having LRI do the work the are getting ready to have a group buy on model 70’s.

Was thinking of getting a Kreiger barrel but shilen is only an hour away. Only problem with shilen is they won’t flute it.

Has anyone put tubbs firing pin in a m70? I have in a model 700 with good results.
 

gbflyer

Handloader
Mar 28, 2017
888
50
SJB358":1pf84rf0 said:
I’m one of the biggest Model 70 fans on here but the 3.6 mag box is a ginormous pain in the butt if you wanna shoot the long Bullets we have today. I have been through it a few times with the 300 Win and Wby. Even breaking a 70 out and getting to 3.6 makes it ok but it just doesn’t allow a bunch of room to work seating the bullet out to the lands. Plus in a Wby or H&H the long Bullets are loaded so darned short it drives me nuts.

Those long magnum cases need a 3.7 or better yet 3.8 to really utilize the heavies out there. With a 300 RUM, Wby or H&H even the danged 200 Accubonds need to be seated so darned deep you don’t get leeway in regards to bullet seating. In those cases, the 300 Win Mag makes the most sense to utilize the mag room and give some leeway in a 70 action.

I was all set to build a 300 Wby on the 70 and unless I was willing to machine it to get a longer mag box in there it didn’t make sense. If I was shooting Partitions or similar then it’d probably be fine.

Good luck, I love monkeying around with the old 70’s and agree, wished all the 70’s in the magnums came with 3.6 boxes.. even the old 338 would be wicked with the new 250-280 grain bullets out there.

I’m with ya. If my H&H doesn’t work right at 3.6 it’s getting a Wyatt’s box. I “think” it will....I plan on loading heavy RN and Partition 180 PP’s and 220 semi spitzers. Also have an antique box of 220 grain Herters RN. Those things scream 300 H&H...in fact I may get very snooty here and start saying “Holland’s Super Thirty” instead. Hahahahaha.
 

gbflyer

Handloader
Mar 28, 2017
888
50
Europe":3i78zar5 said:
that makes sense. I also looked at the Granite mtn once--nice actions, ridiculous price--I passed

It is so nice that you have the knowledge and ability to do it, Enjoy the built and the finished rifle .

They are very pricey, also very heavy. I’m sure they are first class and would last 3 lifetimes. None of my kids are lefties though so to heck with them[emoji1]

Thanks for the kind words. What I lack in ability, which is a lot, I make up for in brute awkwardness and a very hard head.
 

truck driver

Ammo Smith
Mar 11, 2013
6,887
180
SJB358":2dlb5qpx said:
I’m one of the biggest Model 70 fans on here but the 3.6 mag box is a ginormous pain in the butt if you wanna shoot the long Bullets we have today. I have been through it a few times with the 300 Win and Wby. Even breaking a 70 out and getting to 3.6 makes it ok but it just doesn’t allow a bunch of room to work seating the bullet out to the lands. Plus in a Wby or H&H the long Bullets are loaded so darned short it drives me nuts.

Those long magnum cases need a 3.7 or better yet 3.8 to really utilize the heavies out there. With a 300 RUM, Wby or H&H even the danged 200 Accubonds need to be seated so darned deep you don’t get leeway in regards to bullet seating. In those cases, the 300 Win Mag makes the most sense to utilize the mag room and give some leeway in a 70 action.

I was all set to build a 300 Wby on the 70 and unless I was willing to machine it to get a longer mag box in there it didn’t make sense. If I was shooting Partitions or similar then it’d probably be fine.

Good luck, I love monkeying around with the old 70’s and agree, wished all the 70’s in the magnums came with 3.6 boxes.. even the old 338 would be wicked with the new 250-280 grain bullets out there.
There you go again putting ideas in my head. I already have the E magazine box which is 3.6" but would need a short bolt stop and short extractor.
 

SJB358

Ballistician
Dec 24, 2006
31,304
564
gbflyer":39bsk1ve said:
SJB358":39bsk1ve said:
I’m one of the biggest Model 70 fans on here but the 3.6 mag box is a ginormous pain in the butt if you wanna shoot the long Bullets we have today. I have been through it a few times with the 300 Win and Wby. Even breaking a 70 out and getting to 3.6 makes it ok but it just doesn’t allow a bunch of room to work seating the bullet out to the lands. Plus in a Wby or H&H the long Bullets are loaded so darned short it drives me nuts.

Those long magnum cases need a 3.7 or better yet 3.8 to really utilize the heavies out there. With a 300 RUM, Wby or H&H even the danged 200 Accubonds need to be seated so darned deep you don’t get leeway in regards to bullet seating. In those cases, the 300 Win Mag makes the most sense to utilize the mag room and give some leeway in a 70 action.

I was all set to build a 300 Wby on the 70 and unless I was willing to machine it to get a longer mag box in there it didn’t make sense. If I was shooting Partitions or similar then it’d probably be fine.

Good luck, I love monkeying around with the old 70’s and agree, wished all the 70’s in the magnums came with 3.6 boxes.. even the old 338 would be wicked with the new 250-280 grain bullets out there.

I’m with ya. If my H&H doesn’t work right at 3.6 it’s getting a Wyatt’s box. I “think” it will....I plan on loading heavy RN and Partition 180 PP’s and 220 semi spitzers. Also have an antique box of 220 grain Herters RN. Those things scream 300 H&H...in fact I may get very snooty here and start saying “Holland’s Super Thirty” instead. Hahahahaha.

Those bullets are spot on in my opinion for that set up. I doubt you’ll need more.

TD, unless you wanna run heavy weights you’ll be good i bet.
 

Europe

Handloader
Jun 18, 2014
1,125
94
gbflyer

well hell, I tried. I know, the old saying any old steer "can try"

anyway, a woman who is also a widow whose husband was left handed had several rifles built and sure enough a zastava was used. I had hoped she would just give it to me but her son did not want to let it go.

If anything else shows up I will pm you
 

gbflyer

Handloader
Mar 28, 2017
888
50
Europe":377kg7ko said:
gbflyer

well hell, I tried. I know, the old saying any old steer "can try"

anyway, a woman who is also a widow whose husband was left handed had several rifles built and sure enough a zastava was used. I had hoped she would just give it to me but her son did not want to let it go.

If anything else shows up I will pm you

Thanks !
 

ldg397

Handloader
Sep 27, 2007
302
2
Does anyone know if a bartlein #2 matches the profile of a Winchester classic sporter well enough for minimal barrel channel changes to my McMillan stock??
 
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