Winchester Model 70

Nwhunter_aj

Member
Joined
Sep 14, 2019
Messages
12
Location
Washington
I have spoken with a few gunsmiths about building a rifle using a Model 70 action. But i keep getting the same response. If it is not a Remington 700 or Remington clone, they want nothing to do with it. I am just curious is this something common among all gunsmiths?
I'm in the Washington area and my gunsmith loved building my 28 Nosler on a Win 70s. I now currently have 2 custom Mdl 70s and they all operate great! easiest trigger to adjust and modify without going to a custom either. My factory tuned trigger set at 2lbs crisp pulls 100 better than my 1.5 lbs tuned Timney...LOL.

If you want a great smith thats comfy with Win 70s and highly trusted with references feel free to hit me up on messenger. Jeremy Laier is the guy's name and hes tops in my book.
 

Wrenches

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Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Messages
21
Location
The High Country
I rebarrel Model 70's all the time, along with Remington's, Savage's, Ruger's, and Mausers. I don't have a problem with either one of them. If a smith tells you he won't work on a model 70 he is hurting his business.
 

J E Custom

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Joined
Jul 29, 2004
Messages
9,993
Location
Texas
Any 'gunsmith' worth his salt, that really is a gunsmith, should have no problem with a Winchester Model 70, push feed or CRF.

+1
It is easy to stay in your comfort zone, But a good smith needs to stay on top of his game and do different things. Having to plan a build is half the fun and different, makes it interesting.

J E CUSTOM
 

sable tireur

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Joined
Oct 8, 2010
Messages
1,509
If a smith tells you he won't work on a model 70 he is hurting his business.
This is simply not true at all.

The call for providing custom gunsmithing on Winchester actions is very small percentage when compared to the requests regarding Remington or clone actions.

There are dozens of top rated gunsmiths who spend the vast majority of their time in the shop working on Remingtons and Remington clones. Others who have chosen the benchrest or competition path are using actions from custom makers who don't offer control round feed. They are so busy that they have the choice to expand the models they work on or keep the attention on the clones. Besides, Winchester has suffered from the notoriety of poor quality control and bad decision making which puts the larger population of those wanting a build to choose another action.
 

Wrenches

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Messages
21
Location
The High Country
It is true they are hurting their business. I have had my shop open for 35 years and raised four kids from the income. I take all that comes through the door and never issue an opinion to the customer. Here in Colorado there is very little benchrest if any going on. Hunting is the mainstay, big game and or varmints. Throw in the upland game birds and waterfowl. Plenty of shotgun work. As for quality, How many times has Remington been sued over their Walker triggers and the first iteration of the replacement trigger. That one put them through bankruptcy Then there are the bolt handles that come off in the shooter's hands taking a fast follow up shot at a big game animal ( I have never seen a Winchester bolt handle come off in thirty five years), or the extractors that come loose or bend or brake and leave a fired casing in the chamber. You need to check you quality control specs again.
 

Wrenches

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Messages
21
Location
The High Country
It is true they are hurting their business. I have had my shop open for 35 years and raised four kids from the income. I take all that comes through the door and never issue an opinion to the customer. Here in Colorado there is very little benchrest if any going on. Hunting is the mainstay, big game and or varmints. Throw in the upland game birds and waterfowl. Plenty of shotgun work. As for quality, How many times has Remington been sued over their Walker triggers and the first iteration of the replacement trigger. That one put them through bankruptcy Then there are the bolt handles that come off in the shooter's hands taking a fast follow up shot at a big game animal ( I have never seen a Winchester bolt handle come off in thirty five years), or the extractors that come loose or bend or brake and leave a fired casing in the chamber. You need to check you quality control specs again.
This is simply not true at all.

The call for providing custom gunsmithing on Winchester actions is very small percentage when compared to the requests regarding Remington or clone actions.

There are dozens of top rated gunsmiths who spend the vast majority of their time in the shop working on Remingtons and Remington clones. Others who have chosen the benchrest or competition path are using actions from custom makers who don't offer control round feed. They are so busy that they have the choice to expand the models they work on or keep the attention on the clones. Besides, Winchester has suffered from the notoriety of poor quality control and bad decision making which puts the larger population of those wanting a build to choose another action.
 

shortgrass

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Joined
Mar 31, 2010
Messages
2,527
Location
Western Oklahoma
Ask The David Miller Co. what they think about the Winchester 70. Yes, exceptional work comes out of his shop. His shop is about as rare as true "BR" gunsmiths are.
 

sable tireur

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Joined
Oct 8, 2010
Messages
1,509
You need to check you quality control specs again.
Thank you for the suggestion but I and my company are doing exceptionally well and with only about 4 Winchester M70s a year. We use only the very best of the custom actions and manufacturer extremely accurate hunting rifles all day, every day.

You can pat yourself on the back for wanting to smugly cite exceptions to the rule of commerce these days but your ideas and suggestions are exceptions and only that. David Miller Co. included. Winchester has failed with every model and variation they've brought to market for the last 50 years. The last success was the pre-64 Model 70 and the only reason it gets used to day is simply for reasons of nostalgia.

And, if you're trying to push the concept of control round feed, you only need to visit Defiance Machine to find the very best control round feed action made today.

Benchrest is only one part of the suggestion I made as there are well over a dozen custom action manufacturers located right here is the USA. They provide the very best actions for all sporting uses from target shooting to hard core daily hunters. I can suggest that you get out a little more and see some of the more recent innovation in actions and firearms.

upload_2019-10-7_18-50-53.png

upload_2019-10-7_18-51-33.png

upload_2019-10-7_18-52-25.png


And now there are even more:

Mausingfield
Kelbly's
Badger Ordnance
JJ Rock
Fierce
Borden
Pierce
Montana Rifle Co.
Nesika Bay
Dakota Arms
Christensen Arms
Cadex Defense
New Ultralight Arms

And I probably missed a few...

Have a great day!
 

Attachments

rustyshackleford

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Joined
Dec 13, 2012
Messages
229
Location
North Alabama
Thank you for the suggestion but I and my company are doing exceptionally well and with only about 4 Winchester M70s a year. We use only the very best of the custom actions and manufacturer extremely accurate hunting rifles all day, every day.

You can pat yourself on the back for wanting to smugly cite exceptions to the rule of commerce these days but your ideas and suggestions are exceptions and only that. David Miller Co. included. Winchester has failed with every model and variation they've brought to market for the last 50 years. The last success was the pre-64 Model 70 and the only reason it gets used to day is simply for reasons of nostalgia.

And, if you're trying to push the concept of control round feed, you only need to visit Defiance Machine to find the very best control round feed action made today.

Benchrest is only one part of the suggestion I made as there are well over a dozen custom action manufacturers located right here is the USA. They provide the very best actions for all sporting uses from target shooting to hard core daily hunters. I can suggest that you get out a little more and see some of the more recent innovation in actions and firearms.

View attachment 152469
View attachment 152470
View attachment 152471

And now there are even more:

Mausingfield
Kelbly's
Badger Ordnance
JJ Rock
Fierce
Borden
Pierce
Montana Rifle Co.
Nesika Bay
Dakota Arms
Christensen Arms
Cadex Defense
New Ultralight Arms

And I probably missed a few...

Have a great day!
I don’t think he was saying that Winchester > all rem 700 clones but most Winchester model 70’s > most Remington 700’s. You can say it’s nostalgia but the same things that made the model 70 great when it debuted are still true today.
 

sable tireur

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Oct 8, 2010
Messages
1,509
I don’t think he was saying that Winchester > all rem 700 clones but most Winchester model 70’s > most Remington 700’s. You can say it’s nostalgia but the same things that made the model 70 great when it debuted are still true today.
A very diplomatic interpretation of his statements.:) Thank you.

While the statements may still be true today, there are no new Pre-64 Model 70s around to work with. Winchester has failed in all aspects of 'recent' manufacturing even when they went outside the U.S. for help from the Europeans. That's why I use the term nostalgia.
 

rustyshackleford

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Joined
Dec 13, 2012
Messages
229
Location
North Alabama
A very diplomatic interpretation of his statements.:) Thank you.

While the statements may still be true today, there are no new Pre-64 Model 70s around to work with. Winchester has failed in all aspects of 'recent' manufacturing even when they went outside the U.S. for help from the Europeans. That's why I use the term nostalgia.
I’m a little confused by this statement. Are you stating this because you don’t like the FN made actions or they just aren’t “real” Winchester’s anymore?
 

sable tireur

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Joined
Oct 8, 2010
Messages
1,509
I’m a little confused by this statement. Are you stating this because you don’t like the FN made actions or they just aren’t “real” Winchester’s anymore?
Heavens no! But we all have prejudices when it comes to actions, barrel and stock makers. Those that express disdain (or even vehemence) for one action over another are simply distorting some information to suit their reasoning. Am I a big fan of the M700? Not really but I do recognize the potential for its use in making better than average rifles and the huge selection of aftermarket parts and accessories. The availability of those actions as actions is a significant reason for their existence in the field of gunsmithing. The Winchesters suffer due to the lack of action availability.

I have always felt that the FN variants were worthwhile insofar as being usable for building is concerned but they are not the M70 Pre-64 by any means. But they are functional control round feed. I worked on the original release of the Patrol Bolt Rifle and the Special Police Rifle, providing some customized work for FN on those rifles before the rifles were sold. The actions are fine, the stock from Hogue is awful on the PBR while the McMillan is a favorite of mine. But the action is usually not available to builders or custom riflesmiths to use for their own designs and those of their clients. I did stumble onto a cache of six awhile back which I bought but the individual actions are usually not around. So at $3,000 for a new rifle (FN SPR A5M XP) just to tear it apart for the action can be a little more than daunting for most folks. You can't say that for the better clones or the any of the ones on the list of actions I added above. I can buy as many as I want whenever I want. The alternative for the FN of course is to wait for a beater to come up on the used market if the price is reduced to a viable amount.

I think that part of the problem is writing and limiting that writing so the posts are reasonably bite sized. I can and have written book-like posts but the effort is usually lost on the majority who just don't have the time or don't want to make the effort to read it for detail. There are times I know when I don't choose the exact wording I probably should to make my point absolutely clear but my time is limited since I work long hours 6 days a week. In general though, I try to make valid points and provide information in a readable form. I also try to avoid being disrespectful unless pushed to push back.

That's a long way around the Horn but I hope it's worthwhile.
 

rustyshackleford

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Joined
Dec 13, 2012
Messages
229
Location
North Alabama
Those are all very valid points. I have 3 “brownchesters” with the lawyer trigger and aside from the lawyer trigger everything else is great. The trigger isn’t bad at all I just wish it was the old style two lever. Smith feeding, good even engagement on the lugs, accurate enough, etc. I did pick up an FN CRF action from MGW for I think 399$ so I figured at that price point there wasn’t much to complain about. That paired with the McMillan I also got from them with a custom barrel will probably be a pretty serious contender.
 

sable tireur

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Joined
Oct 8, 2010
Messages
1,509
The trigger isn’t bad at all I just wish it was the old style two lever.
Rarely do I ever wish for a past design to be returned to us but in this case you're right. I really like the original triggers and fervently wish they could be brought back. They can't and we are poorer because of this.

I got mine in a side deal with some other actions for $325/each but I had to buy all six. They build nice rifles for the folks who want the CRF. I am always on the hunt for any of the WSSM actions just for myself since I enjoy working with those cartridges.
 

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