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#642912 02/21/24 03:00 PM
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Well this is the new project. I firmed up my commitment earlier this week. My last thread I started, good or bad, garnered a lot of attention and frankly it is humbling when you look at the number of hits. And also others adding their comments were welcome. That project took almost 3 years when I figured a year at the start. But Covid hit and I am slowing down were big factors. Hopefully this one is less.
I am building a Rook rifle. Inspiration was from the Gibbs rook rifles. I am starting with a 1897 WR action casting I bought from Rodney a number of years ago. (It was one of his kit guns but since I am only using the action body all the rest of the parts can go away. If interested in any let me know) Well I took the action and then designed a new action out of it. This is a side lever action but not like a Deeley Edge in function. Some of the pics I hope to share as I go will explain the function.
The rifle will be chambered in 30-30 Win and should weight under 6 pounds. At least that is what I am projecting, we will see. The pics below are of the concept drawing the action just starting the machining process. Since I design in Fusion360 solids I also 3D printed all the parts to assembly and do functional/geometry prototyping.
if you have questions please ask.
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

Last edited by LRF; 02/21/24 03:05 PM.
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Mercy! How 'bout building a handful while you're at it Lynn?! grin

Curious about cartridge choice. .30-30 isn't the first thing that comes to mind when I think "rook rifle". As it is though it'll make a fine woods companion.

I'll take that 3D printed action when you're done with it. Maybe barrel it up for 2.7mm Kolibri or something!

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The "rook rifle" title is just an euphemism for a small rifle, in this concern. Small, lite rifle capable to easily carry around as you survey the estates. small enough in caliber to take out a pesky gopher or collect some venison for supper. LOL Why 30 caliber? Because I had the barrel here already, so convenient.

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Wonderful! I can't wait to see how this one goes.

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LRF,
If you switch to 30 Herret, it would be a little more to scale, while using the same barrel, cases and bullets. As usual, for you, this will be a great project.
MIKE

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MIKE I will consider your suggestion of the 30 Herret

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Keep up the good work.
The drawing looks a lot like a Soper.
30-30 length cartridge is more like a mini-BPE (360BPE).
Good luck with your build.

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Originally Posted by Rick W
Keep up the good work.
The drawing looks a lot like a Soper.
30-30 length cartridge is more like a mini-BPE (360BPE).
Good luck with your build.
Thanks Rick, I went and looked at a Soper and I guess I see where one could compare the two. However, it's a stretch for me, I assure you that is as far as the similarity goes. smile

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Originally Posted by Der Ami
LRF,
If you switch to 30 Herret, it would be a little more to scale, while using the same barrel, cases and bullets. As usual, for you, this will be a great project.
MIKE

MIKE I looked into the cartridge you suggested. Why do you think it would be a good choice?

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LRF,
Only because you put a lot of weight on using a 30 caliber barrel you have on hand and wanted a cartridge large enough to kill deer and not too large for gopher. The 30 Herret has killed a lot of deer, but whether it is too big for gopher is really a subjective question.
If I were building it for myself, I would make it 5.6x50R(deer legal in my state and loaded with 60 grain Nosler kills them "graveyard dead"), but I'm not building it. Since you are building it, you get to do what you want, for your own reasons. There is no doubt that when you finish with whatever caliber you choose, the result will be great.
Mike

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MIKE
Maybe 22 Hi Power (5.6x52R) because I know it will sure take Pronghorns (I can a test to that) and I hear its a Tiger hunting gun. At least I have seen a picture of that as evidence. smile
Think for right now 30-30 because it has taken more game then maybe any other, for the most part. And ammo is factory off the shelf.

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I'm in to watch another neat build you do Lynn!

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If changing the barrel is and option, I would go with 357 Max. This would give you 3 different choices in ammo with two cartridges strong enough for whitetail deer. I love straight wall cartridges in general.

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Well time to add a little having now survived my 3rd case of full blown Covid since 2020. The first pic is of steel that will become the floor plate. The floor plate with this design is the most difficult pcs to make and frankly the most important as all the function part connect to it in one way of another. The first cuts in the material* establish the zero/zero location for the action and parts . This first pic shows those cuts are now made and the action will mate as shown. * material is prehard 4140
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
The next pic shows what the floor plate looks like in the design
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
The last pic shows the floor plate assembled. With the action and barrel already inserted into the stock (similar to any bolt rifle), the floor plate will then be inserted from the bottom. The screws are inserted, tighten and the rifle is ready to go.
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

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Continuing work on the floor plate. The inside milling is done for now and I need to start cutting out the basic shape which is a pretty big job.
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

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Time to add a couple pictures on this project.
Progress has been happening but I just don't move as quick as I once did and my ability to stand at the mill has been reduced to about a hour at a time.
Anyway enough excuses for slow progress.
I have attached pictures of three parts I have made. None are 100% finished as I have to get to the fit and finish stage of the project first before 100% can be reached. I machine the parts, to use an often heard statement to 80% or so. Anyway the 3 parts are the Breech Block, Operator Link, and Double Extractor. I have a lot more pics and some of education value to on how some features were machined. If interested just ask and I can post. (For example the radius on the bottom of the Link and Extractor and then on the floor plate must match as perfect as possible, so the question is how do you do that? The technology to do this is hundreds of years old and its pretty much the same as the english gunmakers probably used on their fine single shots and other guns.)
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

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Looking good!


http://www.bertramandco.com/
Booking African hunts, firearms import services

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Lynn,
I love your posts. I learn a ton from them. I’m curious why you call the one part a double extractor? It’s a rook rifle, so expectedly a single shot. Does the extractor bear on the cartridge case in two places? Please share more pictures and explanation as you can. Super insightful.

Larry

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Originally Posted by earlyriser
Lynn,
I love your posts. I learn a ton from them. I’m curious why you call the one part a double extractor? It’s a rook rifle, so expectedly a single shot. Does the extractor bear on the cartridge case in two places? Please share more pictures and explanation as you can. Super insightful.

Larry
Yes. Single probably is fine but what the heck its my design so I wanted a double. smile

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Originally Posted by earlyriser
Lynn,
I love your posts. I learn a ton from them. I’m curious why you call the one part a double extractor? It’s a rook rifle, so expectedly a single shot. Does the extractor bear on the cartridge case in two places? Please share more pictures and explanation as you can. Super insightful.

Larry

Dual extractor catches the rim of the cartridge at 9 and 3 o'clock for a very positive extraction. It's also much less likely to break the extractor if the case gets a bit sticky to extract.

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LRF,
I picked up on your comment about only being able to stand at the mill for an hour. If neuropathy is involved, my advice is if you have to stay in a hospital for more than overnight take your neuropathy meds and insist they give them to you.They will resist and claim they can only give meds from their pharmacy, and they may not have what you need. If you are put on "nothing by mouth", as soon as you move to a liquid diet, insist on the meds. If necessary, have a family member run the doctor down and insist on them. They will insist that they are too busy keeping you alive and I agree that is important, but if you make them understand the importance they are smart enough to mitigate additional loss of use of your legs. This is especially important if you have to go to 'rehab" because it takes a long time and there is no medical reason you can't have the meds (it may only be your doctor isn't in the system). Whatever you lose, you can't get back. Don't ask how I know; I would be happy if I could stand an hour.
Mike

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edited by Lynn original did not pertain to the reason for this thread

Last edited by LRF; 04/15/24 04:47 PM.
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edited by Lynn original did not pertain to the reason for this thread

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LRF,
I feel for you brother, my problems are also service connected caused by agent orange and hearing loss from rifle range and heavy construction equipment. I didn't choose to use the VA system for my medical services because my wife was on my BCBS Federal and I needed to keep it. At least, we caught the prostate cancer early enough to stop it. Friends didn't find it soon enough.
Mike

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Time for an update. I attached a pic of where the parts are today. Still need to make the Hammer, Trigger, operating spindle/shaft and finish machining on the floor Plate. Then hours and hours of fitting and polishing.
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

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The shapes on the lever and tang are already looking really nice.

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Originally Posted by LRF
Time for an update. I attached a pic of where the parts are today. Still need to make the Hammer, Trigger, operating spindle/shaft and finish machining on the floor Plate. Then hours and hours of fitting and polishing.
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]


I am not a machinist, so how do you get the 90 degree inside corners in the receiver for the breach block? Broach?

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I haven't seen this thread in a while but let me throw out a barrel suggestion. A few years ago I found out that The Falling BLock works were still in business in Ohio. Sadly, I don't think that is true any longer. I had liked them back in the 70's but never got around to getting one. I contacted them and ended up buying two of their smallest size made for varmint and pistol cartridges. They made five sizes from Hornet through Elephant rifles and all were Hi wall replicas. I used one of them to make a small light custom with a half oct/half round barrel from Montana Rifleman that I had purchased. It wa a very light weight tapered .25 caliber barrel barrel intended for lever guns and matched up to the action well. It was 29" raw and I chambered it in 25/35 Win at 28". Leverevolution powder had just come out and the velocities at moderate pressures with the 28" barrel were incredible. This was using modern bullets, not flat nose. I can duplicate anything from 25/20 to near Roberts level. This in a tiny gun that weighs 5-1/2 pounds. It makes for a great walk-about rifle that can be used for almost anything. If you are considering the 30/30, I would suggest that the 25-35 is and eminently better all around choice. A 100-110 grain controlled expansion bullet will easily kill deer with the velocity you can achieve with that powder and barrel length and the use for small game, varmints and crows is much improved.

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Originally Posted by Cold1
I am not a machinist, so how do you get the 90 degree inside corners in the receiver for the breach block? Broach?
There are many ways to do that, broaching, filing in using "file fixtures" similar to methods used in the 1800's by gun makers*, casting and wire cutting/EDM.
This projects receiver started life as a Rodney casting then I have modified it. Also to insure the mortise was true I did take a skim cut using a Wire EDM. So you can see many ways to skin the kitty. On the floor plate which has a much more complicated mortised thru slot I have milled and filed it to shape and will also use broaching to complete the final work required on it.

* a task generally reserved for the apprentices as it was hard physical work.

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Cold1,
Also, there are a lot of the small (7") shapers in shops around the country that can handle the job very well. There are some things a shaper is better than a mill for, but they are admittedly slow. Recently, even large shapers seem to be searched out and put back to work by younger machinists, maybe for nostalgia. Some mills were bought with slotting attachment (works like a vertical shaper) which would work as well.
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Using a method developed by Harry Eales, the vertical mill is used as a manual vertical shaper.
.002-.005" per pass. Works very well and quicker to square corners than setting up a shaper.
Not for production use but works for one of a kind.
Chuck

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I owned a Bridgeport shaper head and used it once. Then sold it because it was like a wart on the back of the Bridgeport so I sent it down the road.
Owning a shaper??? Now there is a space waster if ever one existed. "Nostalgia" only lasts until you stumble around it. Harry Eales was a good friend and a clever guy. Work space was his big concern, so getting inventive was required.

Let me offer you out there wanting to build something and the vertical mortise is your big concern and completing the project, save a big investment in machines and all the hassle and take your action to a tool and die company, with a wire cutter, and have it wire cut out. Yes its costly but not nearly the investment in specialized machines, for a once in a lifetime project.

One other point for the would be rifle action builders, if you think building a rifle from scratch is economical then please think again. Rodney's kits are a starting point and the question of the square hole is no longer an issue and you have all the "net" shaped parts. Since I don't make "reproductions" and everything is of my own designs his kits usually don't workout for me.

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Granted, a 28" shaper takes a lot of floor space (even the 14" I used to have did), but a 7", not so much. Plus, the cutting tools are cheap and easy to grind, yourself. If you are a hobbyist and not selling your time, slow doesn't mean much; anyway, for a tool junkie " He who dies with the most tools wins". Also, they are fun.
Mike

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Since the focus is on cutting square holes lately, here is a bit about that on my project. On this design the operating lever is connected to a part called the toggle link. You can see this part is the earlier picture posts. Well as this link rotates up into the floor plate it slides up into a square mortise that is at a 15 degree angle. This is about the most difficult part of the action design to make. Today I cut that mortise at its 15 degree angle. I have attached a couple pics of the operation. I first milled out as much as I could and then used a broaching tool mounted in the Bridgeport quill to shave out the square corners. After the toggle link and floorplate are all fitted together I will post a finished pic.
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]
[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

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Great work and set up, thanks for the photo.
Mike

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Originally Posted by Der Ami
LRF,
If you switch to 30 Herret, it would be a little more to scale, while using the same barrel, cases and bullets. As usual, for you, this will be a great project.
MIKE
I am considering the 30 Herrett chambering instead of the 30-30 for this project. Does anyone have direct personnel experience with this cartridge? I can and have done all the web based research so now looking for personnel experience info. Ballistic comments, accuracy with what powders and bullets, felt recoil as a function of rifle weight, any pressure concerns, etc

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LRF,
I didn't have a 30 Herret but did have a 357 Herret. They both work much better if the sizing die is set to "kiss" the shoulder and not set it back. Early complaints of case head separations were traced back to setting the die, so the rim bumped it hard. Case life with the properly set dies for my 357 was good. I started setting all my dies that way and am very satisfied with my overall case life. Bob Mileck(?) wrote a lot about the cartridge and I think he did a lot of the development. It is a pistol cartridge, but since it was used in Contenders it was loaded very much like a rifle cartridge.
Mike

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Thank you for the write up and pictures.

I’ve never loaded .30 Herret, but had been thinking about chambering a low wall in it. Hornady has some good data here:

https://static.hornady.media/site/hornady/files/obsolete-data/30-herrett.pdf

As Mike said above, case sizing is important for best results.

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Just an FYI the spelling is 30 Herrett

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That is not the first word I misspelled, and I doubt it will be the last.
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I have a set of .30 Herrett dies you’re welcome to have if you continue with that chambering.
The box is marked Thompson Center but are actually Pacific Durachrome. Lord knows I’ll never use them! PM your addy and I’ll mail out if you want them.

Ken

PS I’ve got .357 Herrett too… same deal if anyone needs them.


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Originally Posted by LRF
Originally Posted by Cold1
I am not a machinist, so how do you get the 90 degree inside corners in the receiver for the breach block? Broach?
There are many ways to do that, broaching, filing in using "file fixtures" similar to methods used in the 1800's by gun makers*, casting and wire cutting/EDM.
This projects receiver started life as a Rodney casting then I have modified it. Also to insure the mortise was true I did take a skim cut using a Wire EDM. So you can see many ways to skin the kitty. On the floor plate which has a much more complicated mortised thru slot I have milled and filed it to shape and will also use broaching to complete the final work required on it.

* a task generally reserved for the apprentices as it was hard physical work.


Thats what I was afraid you would say. I attempted several different ways, Filling, using a corner broach in the mill, yelling at it, cussing at it, etc... I eventually got smart and figured out CAD enough no make a print and sent it out to one of the online machining companies. I was able to get 4 made at a very reasonable price. Mind you these where just the mortise cut into a block of 4140 and not other work done to the block.

That project was coming along nicely until i got side tracked on new projects.

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Time for an update and the news isn’t good. In fact, I am putting this project on an indefinite hold due to a discovered issue with the receiver casting. As stated earlier it began life as a casting of an 1897 WR. I informed Rodney of the issue and he quickly moved to replace it. However, when the new casting was delivered, I discovered a dimensional difference between the original casting and the newly received casting that makes the new one unusable for this project. The as cast breech block mortise is wider than the breech blocks and that is before the casting is cleaned up and smoothed, which would only make the difference worst. A very unacceptable fit. The new casting would not even work with the “original casting kits” of parts, so Rodney has replaced them as well. I want to say Rodney has been a real stand-up fellow concerning this issue.

So, to continue with the project plan, using the new receiver casting, I would need to scrap the breech block and the floor plate I have made. A lot of work for naught. (Not even mentioning all the work I did on the receiver.) The other alternative is to table the use of the casting and the “casting kit” parts and make the receiver part out of bar stock from scratch. That would be a fairly significant leap but not impossible. Time and noodling on the subject will determine the path forward...

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After watching your work for awhile, I have come to the conclusion that very few things are impossible for you.
Mike

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Thanks

Last edited by LRF; 06/10/24 06:37 AM.
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