Machining Pillars

jrock

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Mar 12, 2014
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1,239
Location
Idaho
I have some half inch diameter aluminum rod around and want to make some pillars. My question is in relation to the fit up of the top of the pillars to the action.

I've heard that contoured pillars leave a think layer of epoxy between the action and pillar which can break out at a later date or with larger recoiling guns. Solution: lap the top of pillar to action.
I've also read that flat topped pillars allow more epoxy between the action and pillar minimizing breakout effects.

This got me thinking that I could machine the top of the pillar with a taper to meet the action or thin the walls of the pillar to about 0.03" for the top 0.1" basically creating a thin walled integral washer.
Any thoughts?

I've seen washers being sold online that are suppose to do the same thing once installed on the top of the pillars.
 

J E Custom

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Jul 29, 2004
Messages
10,723
Location
Texas
I have some half inch diameter aluminum rod around and want to make some pillars. My question is in relation to the fit up of the top of the pillars to the action.

I've heard that contoured pillars leave a think layer of epoxy between the action and pillar which can break out at a later date or with larger recoiling guns. Solution: lap the top of pillar to action.
I've also read that flat topped pillars allow more epoxy between the action and pillar minimizing breakout effects.

This got me thinking that I could machine the top of the pillar with a taper to meet the action or thin the walls of the pillar to about 0.03" for the top 0.1" basically creating a thin walled integral washer.
Any thoughts?

I've seen washers being sold online that are suppose to do the same thing once installed on the top of the pillars.


I install pillars to touch the bottom metal and support the action above the stock. This way, when the action is bedded in it stops pushing the bedding compound out when it comes the rest on the pillars. (Leaving a very thin amount of bedding between the action and the pillar.

J E CUSTOM
 

Joel Russo

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Jul 5, 2006
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3,521
Location
Harrisburg, PA
When I machine my pillars for 1.350" diameter round actions, I radius the top of the pillar to contour the action. I usually don't get any bedding between the pillar and the action.
 

Attachments

  • bedding.jpg
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  • bryantbed.jpg
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mark fox

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Dec 18, 2012
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northwest of texas 1800 miles
j.e. custom is correct the proper way to do it.... also when cutting epoxy locks in side do a stare step not just slots it allows a better flow lock for epoxy. I use 3/4 stock at the out side end of the piller use a 1/8 " shoulder at 3/4 " turn the rest down to 1/2 " with epoxy locks this allows the piller to be locked better into the stock and cant be sucked in when its tightened .
 

J E Custom

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Texas
No matter whether you buy or build the pillars, the main thing is proper installation.

Pillars should be in contact with the action and the floor metal when the bedding is done to prevent
compression of the stock and/or the bedding material.

Note: lots if bedding chassis do not do this and need additional support. Some have the chassis counter sink'ed in the action channel and need a bedding washer that will contact the action.

(when chassis systems first came out I had a rifle that continually lost action screw torque and after removing the bedding on top of this pillar recess and doing another bedding job with the filler ring in place, torque remained the same from then on.)

If a pillar bedding is done right, you can check that of your list of possible problems you may be having during accuracy testing.(One less thing to worry about).

PS: That is nice looking bedding jobs by Joel and LongRifles.

J E CUSTOM
 

tinkerer

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Jul 12, 2012
Messages
312
Location
Dallas, TX
What Joel said.

After I drill my AL rods, I radius the top to 1.35 with a sanding drum. Occasionally a little devcon sneaks in, but rarely. I also firmly attach my pillar to the action with the stock bolts to make sure as much as possible of 100% contact.

Larry
Tinkerer
 

jrock

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Location
Idaho
What about a Weatherby Vanguard or Savage where it screw is in the recoil lug area? Flat top I assume?
 

J E Custom

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Messages
10,723
Location
Texas
What about a Weatherby Vanguard or Savage where it screw is in the recoil lug area? Flat top I assume?

Any action with a built in recoil lug is done the same way. Metal to metal to metal (The only difference is that the front pillar is a little shorter and flat is the correct way to cut it). some rifles require a stepped pillar to contact as much of action as possible.

J E CUSTOM
 

Clark

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Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Messages
755
I machine the sides to have ribs for traction in the epoxy, ala Wagner's hacksaw marks on his web site 10 years ago.

I use a boring head to cut the concave radius in the top of the pillar.

I check that the pillar radius is smaller than the receiver radius by .001 or .002".

When I bed the pillars I want them prestressed axially with screws on washers, and I want the pre stressed in their reaction to recoil twist rolling. The amount of clearance must always be used up by the action screws when they are torqued. We don't want most of the compression on the pillars on the center line, we want it on the left side and right side of the pillar.

What does all that engineering talk mean to the tech that makes hardware?
When fitting the pillar shape, the tiny amount of light that comes through should be on the center line, not the ears.
 

Attachments

  • Home made Aluminium pillar from 0.5 in stock with trigger relief cut for early 70s Sav 110 9-16-.jpg
    Home made Aluminium pillar from 0.5 in stock with trigger relief cut for early 70s Sav 110 9-16-.jpg
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  • Boring head cutting 1.355 in diamter radius in .5 in Aluminum round stock for Rem 700 pillar for.jpg
    Boring head cutting 1.355 in diamter radius in .5 in Aluminum round stock for Rem 700 pillar for.jpg
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  • Checking fit on 1.355 in diamter radius in .5 in Aluminum round stock for Rem 700 pillar for Ban.jpg
    Checking fit on 1.355 in diamter radius in .5 in Aluminum round stock for Rem 700 pillar for Ban.jpg
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RustyRick

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Jul 5, 2013
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264
Location
North Western Alberta
Confused about pillars. I had a gun done a year ago. Didn't help.

I was taught years ago by a smith that the action/chamber needed to be sucked down and bedded together. A Vore I had for years shrunk enough so the recoil lug bottomed onto the front sleeve on the bottom metal. Like a crow on a fence post. Grinding the top of the screw sleeve a little bit put her back to 1MOA.

So in my non-mechanical mind seems that if the bottom metals are also touching the action it would be difficult to match all 3 in perfect harmony. Bottom metals, pillars, and bottom of action snug and comfee.
 

mark fox

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Joined
Dec 18, 2012
Messages
86
Location
northwest of texas 1800 miles
there are many reasons to piller bed a stock.

* so the action is not in a bind front & rear of action makes contact with stock at same time so when screws are tightened It stays straight with center line.

* stocks made of wood at times can expand & contract due to heat & moisture.
so what will the rifle hunter do re- torx the action screws causing the alignment of the slide in the action to be out of aligh with the bolt and at times causes trigger & safety problems. like in the remington.

Main objective in piller bedding is that everything stays the same at all times nothing changes. So if your action and or stock design is that it is not needed good. wood all though is very classic and loved by lots it in some cases just causes problems.
 

tinkerer

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Jul 12, 2012
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312
Location
Dallas, TX
What I consider the grail of bedding.

Stress-Free Pillar Bedding

I read it, followed it and it seems to work. I like devcon 10110. Non shrinking, steel filled, and hard enough to machine.

I use aluminum smooth pillars and work hard to make sure the fitting is non stressed before I start bedding.

To each his own.

Larry
tinkerer
 

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