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Thread: Remington Rolling Block- Restoration Possible?

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  1. #1
    Really Senior Member Midmichigun's Avatar
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    Remington Rolling Block- Restoration Possible?

    Greetings from Michigan!

    I am not sure if this particular rifle was a "milsurp" itself, but I do know that various models and rifles of this type were used in America's frontier during the 1800's, and were ordered up to WWI for military use (mostly rear echelon) as I recall. The Rollingblock was a long time favorite of many S. American country's.

    Without further discussion, here is what I believe to be a #5, 1897 Remington Rollingblock as "recovered".





    If I do restore this rifle, it will be a long term item, due to the $$ for the parts. I am looking at Green Mountain 45-70 barrels, and have found a company that sells NEW Rollingblock parts.

    The current barrel has little value, 'cept to look at the caliber it was originally issued as.

    I believe the hammer and trigger could be salvaged along with the receiver. I would obviously opt for a new set of springs, breech block and barrel for starters.

    You can see where the previous owner "ovaled" out some of the screw holes.




    As of right now, I have it soaking in penetrating fluid and diesel fuel.


    Thanks for looking at my latest "tomato" stake!

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  3. #2
    Really Senior Member Midmichigun's Avatar
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    Thread Starter
    The overall measurement of the barrel is this:

    Nice long barrel on that one! I am also thinking that this might be a Type 1 receiver. I have done some work to clean up the oval holes. Basically, I will either plug with steel and weld, or completely weld through. I did find bits of an old drill bit....

    I did need to drill out the pins that held the hammer and breech block. This gave me the following:

    A lot of careful soaking and work got me the following.... the removal of the barrel shank.


    ---------- Post added at 07:55 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:50 PM ----------

    What I find interesting about the tang, is this set of holes:

    I am not a Remy Rolling expert, so I don't know if this was factory... or a field modification. To my untrained eye, it appears that one holes is off center. Is this for a tang mounted sight??
    It appears that the stock lug on the barrel was broken (aside from the rust).

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    Advisory Panel Patrick Chadwick's Avatar
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    I very seriously recommend that you search the forum for "electrolytic cleaning". While this rifle looks like a hopeless case, electrolytic cleaning will recover many parts well enough that they can be used as templates for making new parts. And you will discover an instance of a hopeless case RB being restored to shooting condition if you search for "Argentineicon Rolling Block"

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    Really Senior Member Midmichigun's Avatar
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    Patrick,
    Well... thanks for the kind words!
    This is my test case.... if this works out, I will be converting a Beaumont model 1871 to 45-70govt (BP of course) also. You have to start somewhere, and I figure the Remy that I purchased, is perfect!
    I have a 2nd Remy that was given to me by my father. It is in somewhat better shape.... so I do have a way to check and verify dimensions when in a pinch.
    Looking the parts over, the only concern that I have is the breech block and extractor. Since the block takes sooo much force... and the extractor since it would be fragile after all these years! Worst case scenario is to reweld the severe pits in the metal and remill to correct specs!

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    Senior Member joem's Avatar
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    To me that looks like a $$$$ undertaking, although not impossible. I have a Danishicon RB made in 1882 that I shoot quite a bit. I use Trail Boss powder instead od PB.

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    Advisory Panel Patrick Chadwick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Midmichigun View Post
    Looking the parts over, the only concern that I have is the breech block and extractor.

    That is one very good reason to use electrolytic cleaning. It will clear out all the most minute holes in a way that you cannot achieve with abrasive methods. Fine abrasive/hard polishing methods can also hide hair cracks by the microscopic metal flow on the surface (which is part of a polishing/burnishing action) "papering over" the cracks. The block and hammer components take a battering, and the original hardened surfaces are probably rusted away. So these components may need to be replaced - or refaced !

    But before we get into that, give everything you can an electrolytic cleaning - it's really dead easy and cheap AND effective.

  9. #7
    Really Senior Member Midmichigun's Avatar
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    Patrick,
    Yes, the plan is to actually weld some new metal onto the worst of the pitting, including the breech block, if I can't find a new one. I will go with some nice quality rod to do this. My only concern is putting a case hardened finish onto the surface.

    I might have a contact in the "spray metal" field, and I will know in a few days if I can cultivate this resource to add metal to the outside of the receiver, breech block and trigger and hammer. These guys repair shafts for us at work.... A nice buildup would give me something to mill down. As mentioned, there are NO cartouches or marks left.... so destroying history is not a problem on this sucker...

    I am also looking at a barrel from these folks:
    BCPR - Black Powder Cartridge Rifle Barrels
    While I am thinking of BPCR type shooting with the rifle (so traditional 45-70 and 50-70 type loads would be nice), the .257 barrel fits my price range... As you can appreciate, I am concerned about pressures in this ole gal... but using a modern 4130 steel barrel will help with hoop stress.....
    Thanks for your patience and kind words!!

  10. #8
    Really Senior Member Midmichigun's Avatar
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    Guys,
    Well, after much welding, building up the surface, I have this:

    You will notice in the above photo, I need to fill in the edge of the receiver with more weld. However, most of the pits are gone, with the exception of some minor ones.

    This is a good example of the edge that needs to be filed down, to remove the deeper pits. I will put the trigger guard in place to finish this area off.

    Mind you that these are pre polish. I am told that if I case harden, I will need to polish... polish... polish... the surface.

    I am also looking to get this engraved if possible... before I case harden.

    I am still unsure of the caliber to select. I have noticed some "Star Rollingblock" barrels at Numrich. I think that the threads are different, and only share the name of Rollingblock. But the prices are better than if I go with 45-70govt.

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    Really Senior Member RCS's Avatar
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    Some years ago I rebarrel/restock a Rem 1902 rolling block that was in 7mm and sporterized, I used the Numrich 45-70 oct barrel and made a tang sight.

    My father had a 43 cal Rem rolling-block in his basement for years, came from Hunters lodge in the late 50's, NRA poor condition. I re-worked this over by starting with the receiver, I milled off the half dovetail edges and made it square, bent the lower tang for a pistol grip, made a bushing that I could change in the breech for center or
    rim fire. Best of all, I made a trigger with a sear for a nice trigger pull. I was given a blank of Calif walnut which I used to make the butt and forearm.

    There is a company that sells parts: Rolling Block Parts but expensive. I can not post photos so send me an email for photos

  12. Thank You to RCS For This Useful Post:


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