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  1. #1
    Legacy Member jond41403's Avatar
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    DIY heat treating

    Hello all, does anyone know the procedure The contractors used to heat treat carbine extractors? I know you can heat treat things like springs yourself using a simple kitchen oven and was wondering if you could do the same to reproduction extractors which are very soft. I know most people would say what's the point when USGI extractors are plentiful, but I was just wondering if junk extractors could be turned in to normal functioning useful extractors by heat treating them yourself. Years ago I bought a reproduction extractor just to see how long it would last and the edge was peeled back a quarter of the way after three shots if I remember correctly.basically useless except for show.would it take temperatures above what a kitchen oven could produce? Just bored and curious. Thanks in advance for any and all replies
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    Last edited by jond41403; 10-04-2022 at 01:07 PM.
    "good night Chesty, Wherever You Are"

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    Legacy Member bml's Avatar
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    Having the proper steel alloy is important to heat treated parts. If junk extractors are made from junk steel you probably will not get the results you are looking for.

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    Contributing Member ssgross's Avatar
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    for such a small part you can surface harden pretty easily with just a torch. plenty of videos on how to do it out there.
    https://www.midwayusa.com/product/1006364292
    This would at least make it more serviceable, but don't expect perfect-like-factory-original results, per bml's post above.

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    Contributing Member Flying10uk's Avatar
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    If the steel was capable of being properly hardened and tempered, to the correct specs, it probably would have been carried out when the item was first made. It would be pointless a manufacturer making the part out of the correct grade of "high carbon alloy steel" and then "not bothering" to correctly heat treat the part.

    Case hardening is a process that can be used to surface harden steels that can not be hardened by normal methods. It does involve heating the part to high temperatures, much higher than a domestic kitchen oven.

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    Legacy Member DaveHH's Avatar
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    I would assume that reproduction extractors are cast and that would depend on what steel was used. 4140 is a good steel but can it be cast? There have to be some really great machinists still out there. Reading War Baby, it seems that the parts were arrayed on a wire platform and heated to a specific temp then quenched. The part was troublesome because the makers were not in any hurry to get the red hot parts into the oil bath. This left the rack with half treated parts and soft parts. Looking at finished US extractors under a glass, they are terribly crude looking and those are the keepers. I guess this is why I don't use Wolf Ammunition.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveHH View Post
    I guess this is why I don't use Wolf Ammunition.
    I've only broken one on a Carbine and I'm pretty sure that's what caused it. I did shoot quite a bit of it in a Mini 30 without extractor trouble. I think it was about $1.30 a box for the 7.62x39 at the time! - Bob

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    I agree Bob. A lot of people shoot a lot of Wolf and have zero problems. Consider that the US Ordnance made some 30 carbine steel case and it was used for everything but combat says a lot.. I look at steel cased 45 made by Chrysler during the war and it is basically a shortened 30-06 case, robust, not flexible just like the regular brass cases. That's why you don't ever trim 45 cases, they never grow. Now 30 Carbine is a whole different kettle of fish. Long, thin, easy to dent and distort. A case that is easy to stick in a chamber. Sovieticon weapons get away with steel cases because they are rimmed and tapered, the Germans used mild steel because they had to make it work, varnished and with a short shelf life.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveHH View Post
    I look at steel cased 45 made by Chrysler during the war and it is basically a shortened 30-06 case, robust, not flexible just like the regular brass cases.
    I just sold a box of Evansville 45's at a recent show. I think I still have some empty cases - will take a closer look at 'em. Thanks! - Bob
    (Sorry for the "hi-jack", Jon)

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    No worries Bob, no hijack at all. Every comment is an opportunity to learn I always say. Plus, my question was basically answered by the steel not having enough carbon in it to be able to properly harden it which I can't believe didn't dawn on me before even asking the question haha.
    "good night Chesty, Wherever You Are"

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    I just checked the few steel 45 cases I have and compared them with '06 - almost exactly the same like DaveHH mentioned. Several of the head stamps are "TW 5" for Twin City 1955, if I'm reading those correctly. Only have (2) left of the "EC 43" - one has a large font and the other is small. I thought once about reloading them just to see if that would work, but never got around to trying it - I probably wouldn't have been the first! - Bob

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