The safety lever, itself, sometimes wears down where it engages the cocking piece. There could be wear between the cocking piece and trigger, not allowing the safety to engage. Even if this Pre64 Model 70 Win was made in 1963, that would make this rifle 58 yrs. old. Things wear, even when made of hardened steel. And these days, everyone's a 'gunsmith'. Who knows what alterations may have been made in that amount of time?