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  1. #1
    Senior Member tatou's Avatar
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    Good or no good ?

    Any of you guys know about metallurgy, have an opinion or experience with this.
    I have this MLE barrel action that was deactivated by brazing the bolt in place with brass.
    Now even to me it is quite clear that the receiver and bolt are toast.
    But i am wondering if the barrel might be salvageable ?
    Would the heat from brazing the receiver have affected it ?
    No holes were made anywhere, no rod welded and no DP markings.
    I'm asking because i have this 1893 MLM Mk II action that i would like to mate with a barrel and rescue it.




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    Contributing Member NORTHOF60's Avatar
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    I've taken classes in acetylene welding and brazing, and it looks as though the action was held with a vise tightened on the action barrel ring, so that would have acted as a heat sink. There's a good chance that some of the brazing material may have entered the receiver ring and also secured the barrel. Has the extractor been removed? If not, it will act like a "key" in the breech face to lock in the barrel. The only way to tell the condition of the barrel for sure, is to remove the barrel and look for signs of heat damage. Sorry, that's my best advise. Hopefully, someone with more experience can provide better or more information.
    Some do, some don't; some will, some won't; I might ...

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    Senior Member tatou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NORTHOF60 View Post
    I've taken classes in acetylene welding and brazing, and it looks as though the action was held with a vise tightened on the action barrel ring, so that would have acted as a heat sink. There's a good chance that some of the brazing material may have entered the receiver ring and also secured the barrel. Has the extractor been removed? If not, it will act like a "key" in the breech face to lock in the barrel. The only way to tell the condition of the barrel for sure, is to remove the barrel and look for signs of heat damage. Sorry, that's my best advise. Hopefully, someone with more experience can provide better or more information.
    Hey any advices is good advices. I appreciate any help.
    There is no visible sign of brass, on the top (outside)) of the bolt... i was/am hoping no brass (or very little) got to the barrel.
    Yes the extractor is still in place, it is visible through the semi circle notch.
    I think i can get at it with a small Dremel wheel cuter.... heck i'm even willing to cut the bolt head and a portion of the receiver ring, to free up the barrel if there are any chances to save the barrel.

    Would i be right in assuming the scaling we see on the receiver is a result of intense heat ?
    Haven't tried to scrape it off or anything ... yet.
    There is a little of that scaling on the chamber portion of the barrel, but not too much... way less than on the receiver.
    Almost look like the bluing got burnt off ... it's weird.

    Oh... btw the eat was high enough to ruin the bolt spring and the rear sight spring (if that is of any help)
    Well they remain a little ''springy'' ... but not much...

    I know, no one can judge if that barrel is good or not by just looking at pictures.
    Just trying to see if it's worth to even send it to a gunsmith (for inspection or what ever) and have it mated with the good receiver i have.
    This is just out of my knowledge basis.
    Last edited by tatou; 10-13-2020 at 09:47 PM.

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    Advisory Panel browningautorifle's Avatar
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    I'm betting the whole thing was red hot and then they quenched it in a pail of water. I wouldn't hold hope of using anything from it. They meant to destroy it...
    Regards, Jim

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    Senior Member pisco's Avatar
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    What a waist

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    Senior Member tatou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by browningautorifleicon View Post
    I'm betting the whole thing was red hot and then they quenched it in a pail of water. I wouldn't hold hope of using anything from it. They meant to destroy it...
    Not the answer i was hoping for but chances are you are right ....
    Oh well, it is what it is and if it's not good i am not gonna install it on a receiver.

    ---------- Post added at 12:31 AM ---------- Previous post was at 12:26 AM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by pisco View Post
    What a waist
    A total shame... i've never understood why someone would deact a non restricted gun.
    At least it was not a total waste... a friend bought it and used the wood and fittings to rescue another sporterized MLE.
    I hate scraping any thing, so i asked for the barreled action and he gave it to me.
    At the very least i can use it to mock up wood and not risk scratching a good rifle.

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    Contributing Member mrclark303's Avatar
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    I suppose the only other thing you could do is actually cut off the action body and remove the extractor from its slot, then try to unscrew the barrel from the remains of the body.

    It could be toast anyway.

    That said, if you have woodwork to restore, it's a great clothes horse. Or simply swap the wood with your mates sporter Enfield woodwork and mount it on the wall in your den...

    Great wall art!

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    Contributing Member NORTHOF60's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tatou View Post
    Would i be right in assuming the scaling we see on the receiver is a result of intense heat ?
    Haven't tried to scrape it off or anything ... yet.
    There is a little of that scaling on the chamber portion of the barrel, but not too much... way less than on the receiver.
    Almost look like the bluing got burnt off ... it's weird.
    The heat caused by brazing would definitely leave scaling. If you had access to a bore scope, you could check the chamber and throat for indications of scaling. One of my books states that you can use an acetylene torch as long as you keep the temperature to the point that the colour of the bluing outside the contact point is not affected (the topic was annealing two (2) points on the top of a Mauser 98 receiver ring (notorious for being heat treated extremely hard on the surface, but dead soft internally) so that it could be drilled for tapping, and also involved using heat sinks. The writer stated that you shouldn't be able to cut the Mauser receiver ring with a file if it was properly heat treated). Under the circumstances you describe, unless the barrel has extremely valuable assets (pristine bore, special markings, rarity), or you're just suffering from Covid madness and want something to occupy yourself, salvaging the barrel is probably a lost cause.

    After reading many of your posts, I believe that half of your motivation is the challenge. Personally, I've never removed the barrel from anything that wasn't a "take-down" model, although I've read the mechanics and methods involved. It could prove to be a learning experience, even if the barrel can't be salvaged.
    Some do, some don't; some will, some won't; I might ...

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    Really Senior Member Bruce_in_Oz's Avatar
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    Mausers seem to have been case-hardened, being they were traditionally made from a straight Carbon steel. Lots of recipes, but packing them in a bed of carbon-bearing material; shredded leather, for example, in a closed iron box and shoving them in a furnace of some sort, then quenching etc. is one method.

    Note that a variation on this method is the guts of the magnificent "colour-case-hardening" seen of many 19th century firearms and "custom" 20th century ones. Some modern guns still feature this look, but because of the alloy steel s used, the effect is formed by some devious chemical process, not by being cooked in a box with tastefully arrayed leather and bits of horse-hoof shavings. The whole thing was originally all about forming a wear-resistant skin on certain surfaces; the cute look was an incidental bonus.

    The advent of exotic alloy steels and induction heating etc, put a whole new face (so to speak0 on things.

    "Spot-heating" has been around for a while, too.

    If you ever get to fondle a MINT No1 Mk lll, particularly the Lithgowicon ones, look on the upper Left side of the receiver. There may well be an odd little round "blemish", about 6 to 8mm in diameter and sometimes with a tiny "dot" in the centre of that blemish. This is where the carbon electrode was applied to "spot-heat" the area just behind the left-side locking recess. SOMETIMES, its right-side mate is visible as well. A neat way to heat ONLY the critical area and then quench as appropriate.

    Bolt bodies are a bit more tricky as, after heat treatment, they were extensively hand "finished" in the process of matching them to gauges and mating them to a rifle body.

    Anyone have the process paperwork for the No4 or P-14?

    I know it was possible for parts to be "over-cooked" in various hardening processes, especially during wartime. I have several No4 cocking pieces that have fractured in use, with the breaks clearly shows the sort of nasty, "large" crystal structure which contributes significantly to brittleness.

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    I'd say its toast, an old saying many years ago taught to me, for anything like the above or similar, if it was your car brakes and you had your family in it would you be happy....... NO
    Works all the time for me, I've scrapped many a rifle and barrel when in doubt. Some I have saved and re barrelled to .22

    I bought a Mauser many years ago ( Dealer to Dealer over the phone) a K98icon that had been made into a target rifle, in which the action looked very similar to the condition of the above, (read Bruce's post above about Mauser's) some of the pitting had gone through the hardening, luckily I only wanted the barrel as it was a Schultz & Larsen barrel, but it was the fact the dealer would of sold this rifle to anyone.................... think his comment at the time was it bears proof marks, I wouldn't of fired caps from it, barrel removed and action scrapped.

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