Blue printing a Savage , what about the bolt head?

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing' started by James Jones, Jun 25, 2007.

  1. James Jones

    James Jones Well-Known Member

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    I know a few of you guys here ahve built customs on Savage actions I was wondering what process your using to get the bolt head trued up.

    I'm thinking about turning the rear of it down a little to make sure its perfectly round then making a tight fitting bushing to fit in the bolt body so its basicaly be a fixed head like the Remingtons. I could probably TIG it to the bolt body but thats awfully close to the lugs for my comfort zone.
     
  2. Dead Beat

    Dead Beat Well-Known Member

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    i been a GTAW for 39 years sounds interesting let us know how it turns out . i qualified and aluminum pipe procedure for BP a few years ago!! i know what you mean about comfort zone
    JIM
     

  3. Don - In Idaho

    Don - In Idaho Well-Known Member

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    One reason the Savage actions do so well so I am told is because the bolt head has some play in it.

    You might actually decrease potential accuracy by "remingtonizing" it.

    Fred at SSS squares up the bolt face, says they are almost all concave, and does a few other things, but does not take out the play between the bolt head and the body.

    I have some Savage action guns that shoot in the teens that have never been touched other than to spin a barrel on.
     
  4. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    I would have to agree with LRS on this one. The simplistic beauty of the Savage receiver is that the bolt head floats to self align. When I accurize a Savage receiver, I true up the receiver threads, bolt lug locking recess surfaces and receiver face, then I install the bolt and take a depth measurement around the bolt face to the receiver face.

    In most cases, it will be very consistant and square because the bolt heads are generally machined pretty square to start with and they are not setting on trued lug supports and a square receiver face.

    I have probably built nearly 40 Savage rifles to date, and only two have needed any more work then this and all have easily met my 1/2 moa accuracy potential requirement without touching the bolt heads at all besides minor lapping after receiver truing.

    Simply put, true up the receiver and check the squareness of the locked system. if it ain't broke, don't worry about it!!! Let that head float.

    Kirby Allen(50)
     
  5. James Jones

    James Jones Well-Known Member

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    I figured that I was over complicating things with wanting to work the bolt head over.

    Thanks a bunch fellas
     
  6. WbySub-MOA

    WbySub-MOA Member

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    Stuck Bolt Head on Savage

    I thought this thread might be the better place to post my question.

    I just witnessed the bolt head separate from the bolt body of a friend's Savage model 12 in 220 Swift. And to my knowledge, Savage doesn't offer repair work on this gun since it was made prior to 1994.

    We were pondering what to do about it? The case is stuck in the chamber (Norma factory load), therefore we're standing around here wondering what move we should make. We took the spanner nut off, and now we can't remove the barrel from the action. The stuck case is so tight, we can't turn the barrel, the case is wedged so tight in the bolt and also the bolt head is locked into its recesses due to this force.

    We were talking about using the propane bottle on the barrel / action. Or maybe putting it in the chest freezer overnight. We tried the freezer first.
    I applied G-96 liberally in all the recesses, let it soak about an hour, and placed it in the deep freeze last night.

    About an hour ago this morn, while the gun was still chilled, we chucked the barrel and were able to break the action free. I had a few bolt heads in the my parts drawer, made a new pin, and saturated the whole deal with G-96.

    I headspaced the barrel on a factory Norma round. I went out to the back yard and fired the gun (with some fishing line and handloads using 4350, mind you), checked the fired case for any alarms. All appeared well. I repeated this test firing for 3 rounds, then tested some Norma. All appeared well again. Remounted the scope, brought the windage back in and she's back in true form.

    Interesting problem that we tackled I wanted to pass on to the Savage crowd. Run down to the discount stores and pick up a cheap chest freezer. Ya never know.
     
  7. Fiftydriver

    Fiftydriver <strong>Official LRH Sponsor</strong>

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    Did you check the bolt lug locking recesses for any barrel set back. If the case was stuck that tighly, I would be suprised if there was not some degree of bolt lug setback in the receiver recesses or on the actual bolt lugs. I would check that out very closely, even though its shooting fine now, that does not mean the receiver has not been weakened........

    You may also want to have the receiver ultrasounded to make sure there were no cracks in the receiver. most machine shops that work on engine rebuilds can do this for you.

    I have never needed to do this but have heard of others that should have had this done before shooting their rifles again:(!!

    Kirby Allen(50)
     
  8. WbySub-MOA

    WbySub-MOA Member

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    We examined the lugs and they appeared to be true, then looked in the recesses and they looked good. I could not find any discrete set-back.

    Yes, the barrel has been removed and we're gonna check the action after lunch, to be double-sure. But I'm sure this was a weak bolt head pin that just gave way. This gun has used factory ammo only so I'm pretty confident the action is fine. It had to be blue-pilled at the factory anyway, with pressures exceeding 85,000 psi. It's hard to get around the 2-piece bolt design as it can fail, which is why they never received any government contracts and are seldom used in the bench circuits.

    This is my first experience with this type of failure and I lay the blame on the pin. The bolt head looked fine save the hole where the pin goes through. It showed very slight wear, but I could mis-interpret it as a sloppy tolerance.

    Thanks for the help, too.
     
  9. edge

    edge Well-Known Member

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    ooppppps !
     
  10. James Jones

    James Jones Well-Known Member

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    I agree with Kirby on that if the case had jamed up the bolt that hard either their was a problem with the load and it was WAY over pressure or their is a flaw in the lug recessess in that either they were improperly
    heat treated and have been hammered back some or their is a machining flaw.
    the two piece bolt like the Savage is just as strong as any other two lug desgine. If you suffered a failure like you are describing here the bolt would have been locked shut reguardless , and if it were a Remington you would have likely knocked the bolt handel off trying to beat it open. with only hearing the description of the probelm I'll wager to say that it woulden't have mattered if it were a two piece bolt or one. I will say that after now machining the Savage bolt head I think that it is a harder material than any Remington I have cut.

    I went ahead and made a little jig to hold the bolt head and allow me to get a good cutter in their to face off the back of the lugs then I did the bolt face and front of the lugs , so now the bolt head is square , and just so you guys know the bolt lugs were only slightly out of square with the bolthead shank and the bolt face was a good bit out from the shank , so I think that trueing up the head may be a worth while task for squeezing that last little bit of accuracy out of a Savage.