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Chev. William
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« on: August 17, 2013, 05:55:00 pm »


Good Day All,
I am a new member, living in Sun Valley, California, in a portion of the San Fernando Valley region of Los Angeles City and County.
my Interests are varied and my 'history' has spanned '3 score and 10 so far.  I have currently a few small projects 'on the fire' and am slowed by a Financial 'downturn' since 2009.

the most current projects are:
1.  Investigating the potential of a series of lengthened .25 ACP cases up to a length of about 1.350", one of which is what I am calling temporarily ".250ALS" with a Case Length of 1.125" as a Center fire 'update' of the .25 Stevens RF.
2.  This is for use in one of two 'resurrected' 1894 Stevens Favorite receivers i picked up from Auctions.  I also received one .32 Long RF Stevens barrel with one of them and bought a .25 Stevens barrel on another auction.  so far i have been lucky and been able to find replacements for missing parts and two spare Breech blocks, so I can do at least one conversion from RF to CF.  
I have found the .25ACP cartridge is similar in diameters and pressure levels to the .25 Stevens cartridge so I will be trying out this in the converted Stevens soon.  It is about the same length as the .25 Stevens short RF.  Bullets look like they will not be a problem as i have found a mold maker that will make a 65gr. .253" diameter cast bullet for me.
3.  Investigating replacements for .32 Long RF cartridges and loadings.  To use in the other Stevens Favorite barrel and action.
There are molds available for .32 Cast Lead bullets suitable for this use at 90gr. inside lube heeled RFN design.
4.  A conversion of a 30 M1 Carbine action to try it as a .45 Winchester Magnum Rifle, with a Rifle length barrel.  this is going slow as my local Gunsmith Shop has been having start up problems after purchasing the shop from the retiring owner.

My experiences to date:
40 years 10 months 29 days U. S. Navy and Reserve Service, Honorably Retired, with Va disability and listing as both an Agent Orange and an Ionizing Radiation Disabled veteran, with 40% Service Connected Disability Rating.  I was an attendee of the "Late Great South East Asia Garden Party" also referred to as Vietnam (1963-1965) and received the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal for Vietnam (issued before the Vietnam Campaign Medal was authorized).  Was a 'participant'(while assigned to a DER) in the "Doninic II" series of Atmospheric Nuclear Tests in the Pacific, hence the "Ionizing Radiation" disabled veteran listing.
Was awarded SCUBA, Parachute, and Aviator qualifications.  Saw service on a DER out of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii and a MSC out of Sasebo, Japan.  Volunteered in the Coast Guard Auxiliary, and the Civil Air Patrol, was a Scout Leader for a time, was a Professional Road Racing Side car Passenger (Monkey) for a Few years.  Worked in the Defense Electronics field for decades, now am a Union Member of IBEW local 40 as a Electronics technician and Production Electrician plus other special qualifications.
I rode a Motorcycle in Japan, brought it home with me on separation from Active Duty to the Reserves, it is still in the family.
Received a Private Pilot Certificate with Instrument Rating and a Certificate of Demonstrated Ability (Second Class Level).
Have Driven Diesel Truck Tractor - Semi Trailers in the past, am a "Intermittent Appointee" in the NDMS system as a Team Supply/Logistics Officer, now inactive.  I have worked in movie Special Effects in the past, and sometimes get calls to run Ritter fans (Wind Machines) or Generators still.

Glad to be a member and hope to contribute to the Forums and Threads.
Best Regards,
Chev. William ETC USN Retired
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Shotgun Franklin
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« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2013, 07:49:37 pm »

Nice to meet ya.
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Silent Joe
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« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2013, 12:43:04 pm »

Welcome in Town, Pard. Look around and enjoy your time in here.  Smiley
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Shotgun Franklin
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« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2013, 03:14:10 pm »

BTW, That #4 has likely been done before. Years ago several wildcatters did all kinds of work on the M1 Carbine with conversions to all kinds rounds. I'll check through some of my older books and see if I can dig something up. You might check 'Cartridges of the World' in the wildcat chapter.
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Chev. William
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« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2013, 01:10:12 pm »

BTW, That #4 has likely been done before. Years ago several wildcatters did all kinds of work on the M1 Carbine with conversions to all kinds rounds. I'll check through some of my older books and see if I can dig something up. You might check 'Cartridges of the World' in the wildcat chapter.


I believe you are right as I saw an article on a 'LeMag conversion 45 Winchester Magnum on a 30 Carbine action' a few decades ago, around the 1980's, which percolated in my subconscious for a couple of decades until I picked up a Carbine NOS unissued USGI Winchester built receiver.  I then purchased a Barrel blank and a Chamber reamer with Head Space Gauges then turned them over to a local Gun Shop to get the barrel machined and fitted to the receiver, it has been there ever since, waiting for their time and manpower to get around to the 'back burner' project. I am patent as the original quote for the work was $200.00 and I have not received any notices of increases to date.  It did take them over a year to get a Lathe large enough for barrel work so all has not been lost on them.
Full power loads are not in my plans, even though the article said the conversion handled them without problems, I just do not wish to retire the receiver early due to 'stretched locking lugs' from the greater bolt face thrust of a full pressure 45 WM cartridge.
The extra length of a Rifle (24"), versus a Carbine (18"), length barrel should give back most of the velocity loss I would get from the lower pressure loadings.  Converting 30 Carbine Magazines to handle the 45 WM is doable except for the 'asinine' California Legislature making buying donor magazines nearly impossible so far and trying to ban them outright, with confiscation to follow.
I always thought such 'Ex Post Facto' Laws were unconstitutional; but with our current Federal Administration 'Constitutional' is not on their 'concerns list'.

Best regards,
Chev. William
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Chev. William
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« Reply #5 on: September 20, 2013, 10:11:12 am »

While I was outside with the two dogs, I checked what the Black Powder (BP) capacity of my .32 Long Colt cases is.
It turns out that level full to the rim they hold about 11.7 grains of loose fffg GOEX; and if space is left to seat one of the heeled bullets without compression, they hold about 10.7 grains of loose fffg BP.

I would surmise that around 11.0 grains would fit with some compression, and perhaps slightly more with heavy compression.

Reportedly, the .32 Long RF originally had 18 grains of BP and the .32 Long Colt CF had 12 grains of BP. I guess the RF round gets its extra capacity from not having a separate primer and the CF round may have been a "Balloon Case" design.

Something to think about for the future.

I also tried a .25ACP case and found it will hold 5.0 grains of Loose, not compressed, fffg GOEX Black Powder (BP) level with the mouth rim and about 4.0 grains of BP with space to seat a heeled bullet without compression, possibly slightly more with compression.

As far as I know, the .25ACP was never commercially loaded with BP as it was introduced with the Colt Pocket Pistol after Smokeless powder was developed.

At my home, all Powder handling is done outside so as not to get 'Gun Powder on the Carpets'.   I can do removal of fired primers and some sizing inside, but measuring charges, loading cases, and seating bullets are 'outside activity' done on my covered patio, which is why our dogs come out with me when I am out there.

Best Regards,
Chev. William
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« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2013, 09:36:51 am »

An Update on my projects list:

I bought at auction a Stevens model 1915 Series action 'in the White' to be stocked and barreled.  It is originally in .22LR from trying my .25 Stevens Barrel and finding a case will not clear the extractor so it will probably be reworked to another caliber, possibly .32 Long Colt as i tis somewhat stronger than the two 1894 series actions I already had.

I lucked out and bought another .25 Stevens barrel at auction that appears to be "a Keeper" as it has a very clean, shiny, and fully rifled bore that slugs tight full length and .246" Bore with .251 Groove diameters. It has 90% to 95% thin Blue finish over all exposed surfaces, including the tenon and breech face, although the breech face is thinner.  The two Dovetails are in very good condition.  The caliber marking is sharp and deep and the Stevens name and address stamping has a 'ghost' double strike stamping under the sharp and deep main stamping.

I also bought a Craftsman 12 inch Lathe that had been in a Shop fire and had melted tar and other roof debris all over it for $300.00 from the shop owner as a way to help him in clearing the fire damage.  It has a 'Norton Quick Change Threading Gear Box on it and so far is cleaning up nicely, but some covers and gears also partially melted os will need replacing.  Apparently Sears still stocks many parts and there is always Ebay to try.  The Lathe has Timken Taper Roller Spindle bearings and a 1.5" x 8TPI nose thread and research indicates it took 3C size collets.  The bed has flat ways and appears to be standard, 36", length with the Sears data plate still intact and readable, so I have the exact model and serial numbers.

Best Regards,
Chev. William
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Chev. William
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« Reply #7 on: December 04, 2013, 10:40:03 pm »

An update on my projects:

The 1915 action now has three spare Breech blocks, NONE of which exactly match the dimensions of the one in the action!
The 'spares' are all the same general contour but the The one in the action has a larger radius on the pivot ends and the pivot hole is larger in diameter.  It appears the action has been modified by some owner in the past.  Also the Breech block pivot bolt appears to be a 'Step Bolt' in design as the threaded end is smaller than the body diameter.
I have made a 'bushing' out of Cold Rolled Steel to fit the action barrel socket and guide a 3/16 Transfer punch to center mark the Breech Block in line with the approximate center of barrel bores.  It turns out the bushing will be usable on my 1894 actions/Breech Blocks as well.

I have mostly cleaned up the outside of the 'Bastardized Model 44 Barrel' I bought off of Ebay.  There is still a number of 'dings and pits' that need to be cleaned of rust.  So I bought a recommended, environmentally Friendly, Rust removal chemical called "Enviro-Rust" from Harbor Freight Tools local store.  It came in an opaque 'silver-grey' plastic rectangular bottle of one quart capacity.
I have had the butt end of the barrel soaking in in a cut down Soft Drink bottle for the past 6 hours with no visible cleaning action so far.  I intend to leave it soaking fo rat least 12 hours to see if any visible effect results.

The Die cleaning I am doing for Hollywood Engineering's Joe Mueller is still going on but It has been too cool to do the Wire Brush cleaning of the bores so I probably will be handing Joe the half cleaned dies to get room on my bench to continue.

My Lathe Cleanup project is slowly progressing, with the tail stock and the saddle assembly off and disassembled and rough cleaned.  The bed is partially cleaned, along with the head stock and cabinet mount.  there is still adherent Roofing 'crud' to be gotten off and the motor/electrics have not been touched yet.  the Norton Quick Change threading gear box is still to be removed and cleaned.
I have been able to purchase replacements for the 'cranks and knobs' that were melted beyond salvage and the various shafts and lead screws seem to have been protected from damage by overhangs and enclosing structures.  The 'Oil Hole Covers" were not as lucky, they were Zinc Die Castings and enough fire got to them to partially melt them, so I have purchased replacements that will be installed after final cleaning and painting of the various assemblies.

Work on Reforming die kits for ".25 Stevens", ".250ALRM", and ".32 Long/.32 Long Colt" brass cases has been progressing slowly due to the other projects and funding limits but are nearly complete. 

For forming .32 Long Colt out of .32 S&W Long brass, I have settled upon using multiple forming steps: a pass through a .32 S&W sizer, then push into a modified .325" Bullet sizing die, followed by a .32 Long Colt sizing die all the way to the rim.  This is followed by turning the rim to diameter and thickness, removing the displaced 'roll' of brass from the reforming.  This will be 'back up' for the present 'purchased reformed cases from J. Harrison.

For forming .25 Stevens and .250ALRM cases I can use similar tools and process: Expand the .22 Hornet case mouth and shoulder with a .250" diameter taper punch, then full length size in a Lee Carbide .25ACP die, followed by a second insertion in the .25ACP size die using a 'RCBS Primer Pocket Swage Tool', with additions, to get the case formed to diameter all the way to the top of the rim.  This is followed by turning the Rim either to thickness, removing the 'roll', or both thickness and diameter and adding the extractor groove, depending on which version I am making.  All the cases are trimmed to length after forming.

I am still looking for sources of bullets suitable for the various cartridges;
For .250ALRM I need normal inside lube or jacketed bullets in .251" to .255" diameters in 65 to 70 grains, I already can use existing 50 and 35 grain commercial bullets but need the heavier ones for longer range shooting.  I do have some 'Carolina Cast Bullets' .256" diameter 51 grain Cast Lead bullets to use.
For .25 Stevens I need 65 to 67 grain Lead Bullets to reproduce the original ballistics.
For .32 Long Colt I would like 90 grain RFN heeled inside lube bullets, similar to the Accurate Molds "31-090A" design.
I do have some J. Harrison "299153" outside lube heeled bullets and a few sample 31-090A bullets provided by another shooter to try out.

Best Regards,
Chev. William
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Chev. William
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« Reply #8 on: December 29, 2013, 11:33:05 am »

End of year update:

1.  I have been bidding and purchasing some useable barrrels on Ebay, along with soem othe r items tha tappear to be useful in my "projects".  Just lately I won a Auction for a Shelin Match Grade Stainless Steel Barrel Blank in .308 caliber that is 26-1/2" in ch long and 1-1/4 in ch diameter.  I Think this was intended as a Christmas Gift as NO one else bid on it.  I am waiting fo rit to arrive in the Mails.
I also bought another Stevens .32 Long Barrel that was Brown outside, with 'CRUD' on the outside and in the bore.  After cleaning the 'CRUD' off the outside with a 'Scotchbrite' pad and out of the inside with multiple passes with a bore brush, I find tha the bore is very useable with rifling remaining for the full length and only light pitting of the bore.  The 'Kicker' is that the chamber measures .348" diameter and 1.07" in length.  The diameter is .013 bigger than the .32 S&W Long Diameter so is even more oversize for the .32 Long Colt.  I will probably need to Bush the chamber and recut it to .32 Long Colt for the barrel to be useful.

2.  The Stevens 1915 Favorite action I purchased seems to have been rebuilt and upgraded by the former owner.  the Breech Block is wider, at .595", than a normal 1915 Breech Block, usually .550" or slightly less, and the Pivot screw is .249+" diameter compared to .231" normal 1915 Breech Block Pivot screws.  The Lever Pivot screw is also larger than normal 1915 screws.
I have opened up the holes in a spare 1915 Breech Block and tried it in the Receiver.  It leaves noticeable gaps on either side and the clearance to the rear is slightly more, but I believe it will be usable fo ra conversion to CF.

3.  .32 Long Colt bullets will no longer be a Problem for me and probably others for a time.  I 'bit the Bullet' and bought an Accurate Molds 5 Cavity mold for their "311090A" 90 grain heeled inside lube RFN bullet design, which drops .312 Drive band bullets with a .303 Heel diameter according to "Matt's Bullets" who has the mold and will be casting the bullets after the first of the year.

4.  As previously stated I have a "Keeper" .25 Stevens Barrel now so that 'quest' is completed.  The bullets are still a problem for anything heavier than about 51 or 52 grains. I still have not found a source for 67 grain bullets in either .252" or even .255" diameter for use with my .25 Stevens CF experiments.  I did find one source for a custom mold but have not been able to get the source to send an invoice so I may pay for the custom mold.  I have not been able to contact them by email nor phone since before Thanksgiving.

5. My two 1894 actions and several barrels, spare parts and Etc.are still at my Gunsmiths Shop waiting to be inspected,upgraded, and barrels/extractors fitted to breech blocks converted to CF so I can use them in my Experiments with both lengthened .25ACP, .25 Stevens CF, and with .32 Long Colt cartridges.  I am planning to also have Breech Blocks left in RF form so they can be used with RF cartridges in the future.  My Gunsmith also works in the Movie Industry and he has been out of State since before Thanksgiving on two Location Movie projects.  I am hoping he will be back to Gunsmith work after the New Year for a period.

6.  Other projects have been going slowly also:
The Fire 'damaged' 12 inch swing by 54 inch bed length Craftsman Commercial lathe I bought is slowly being disassembled and cleaned/inspected.  I have purchased replacement hand wheels, knobs, a Compound slide top swivel/dovetail piece, some replacement gears and oil hole covers so far.  We have the Tailstock, Saddle, Lead screw, and "Norton" Quick Change Threading Gearbox off and mostly cleaned up with the gearbox still to be completely disassembled and thoroughly cleaned and inspected before reassembly.   The Headstock/Spindle and Drive system have still not been removed or cleaned yet.  The bed itself is partially cleaned off and still is on a 'bent' drip tray cabinet/pedestal Base.  The Electrics are being left for last.
It So Far looks like the Lathe will be usable after we are done with the cleaning but final reassembly and testing will let us know better later.

My Sources of Income (Social Security Retirement, Military Retirement, and VA Service Connected Disability payments) have been hit by the double strikes of decreased 'cost of living' adjustments and Added and rising Taxes, thanks to "ObamaCare" provisions and the latest Federal Budget.  So my progress with the various projects will need to be put back into background for what is left after Taxes, Medical, Utilities, and Food are taken care of.  I am still registered with my Union for Work Calls but they have been 'sparse' and short in length (usually one day each) the last three years.  Since I am now 71, I don't expect a Studio to offer any long term employment in the future.

But I guess that is the same problem most people are having now.

May everyone have a Happy and better New Year.
Best Regards,
Chev. William
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« Reply #9 on: January 31, 2014, 02:17:09 am »

Wed. Jan 30th, I got some Good News from my Gunsmith, my two Stevens 1894 series actions are getting some work done on them.
He asked me to bring in whatever parts and Barrels I had acquired since I dropped off the Actions for upgrade.  I did as requested and we sorted out that he still needs the two Springs for one of the actions and need to 'fit' the screws for lengths for the other action.  We also sorted through the barrels and I left him with only four barrels to work with for the time being, a Stevens .25 Stevens "Keeper", a Stevens .32 Long one with a good bore and rifling, and two Stevens .22 Long rifle ones to choose between as needed for Functional Test Firing fo the actions.  He also held on to a Stevens Oak Butt stock and a Reproduction Butt Plate to be fitted to it.
Things are looking better for possible Spring trips to the Range with the Stevens rifles.

best Regards,
Chev. William
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« Reply #10 on: December 22, 2014, 02:01:13 pm »

Since January, I have had the First of two 1894 Actions back as a Rifle and test fired it at the Range.  Teh Original Soft steel Pivot Screws for the Breech Block and Lever Bent under a .25RF test cartridge.  And I took it back to the gunsmith for fitting with Modern Alloy Steel Pivot screws, properly Heat Treated.

I also put together a "Kit of parts" to make a Stevens Marksman rifle.  Now I am waiting for the gunsmith to solve a 'light Strike' problem with it.

Over the Years I have been collecting bits and pieces for the Stevens Favorite and Model 44 actions and now find I have enough to put together some more actions; three 1894's and a pair of 1915's along with two '44' version.

These will sit in my home until the projects presently with my gunsmith are back in my hands again, which may be sometime after February 2015.

Patience is a Virtue, especially if it saves money in this poor Economy.

Best Regards,
Chev. William
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Chev. William
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« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2015, 01:30:42 am »

A week into the New Year adn trying to make financial ends meet due to too few Work Calls last year (only three days worked last year) but got some 'help from my Union; they changed my 'status' from Active to Retired as I am now 72 year old, so I will be paying only for the months I actually get work Calls rather than paying for all 12 months in a year whether I get Work Calls or not.

I am now getting Motion Picture Industry paid up Lifetime Annuity as I am past the 71-1/2 year age limit for IRA deposits.

My Bills, due to inflation and Tax levy increases, are outstripping any 'gains' in Social Security or Veterans benefits so my discretionary Spending funds are shrinking.  I see a point comming when I hve to choose between Food and paying Utilities and Taxes, not a good outlook.

Best Regards,
Chev. William
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Chev. William
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« Reply #12 on: December 25, 2015, 01:13:36 pm »

Some Orders from other suppliers Came so it is a "Happy Christmas" for me.

May All Have a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!
"Joy to the/World. . . . "
Best Regards,
Chev. William
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« Reply #13 on: May 03, 2016, 02:21:50 pm »

It's Been a While so I will give some updates on my 'projects':

The most current projects are:
1.  Investigating the potential of a series of lengthened .25 ACP cases up to a length of about 1.350", one of which is what I am calling temporarily ".250ALS" with a Case Length of 1.125" as a Center fire 'update' of the .25 Stevens RF.

I now have two Published "Mildcat" cartridges and a third 'in the works'
-  "6.35x32mmSR" based upon reformed 5.7x28 brass, case length of 1.260' +0.0/-0.040" with a similar design from Hornet Brass, the .250ALRM.
-  "6.35x28.6mmSR", a trimmed down 8.35x32mmSR of 1.125" +0.001/-0.025" wiht a hornet based similar sized .250ALS.
-  A proposed "6.35x26mmSR/.25MACP" of 1.055"+0.001/-0.0325". This is similar to the .22WMR in Lengths, but with larger diameters and possible heavier bullets of .250"-.251" diameters.

2.  This is for use in one of two 'resurrected' 1894 Stevens Favorite receivers i picked up from Auctions.  I also received one .32 Long RF Stevens barrel with one of them and bought a .25 Stevens barrel on another auction.  so far i have been lucky and been able to find replacements for missing parts and two spare Breech blocks, so I can do at least one conversion from RF to CF. 
I have found the .25ACP cartridge is similar in diameters and pressure levels to the .25 Stevens cartridge so I will be trying out this in the converted Stevens soon.  It is about the same length as the .25 Stevens short RF.  Bullets look like they will not be a problem as i have found a mold maker that will make a 65gr. .253" diameter cast bullet for me.

More Stevens parts and pieces have been acquired over the years and both a 1894 and a 1915 favorite have been assembled and fired using Powder Actuated Tool Blank Loads (PTL) behind Breech seated bullets or in machined Adapters with seated bullets.  One 1894 breech block has been converted to CF; one 1915 breech block has been converted to CF; a 1915 Favorite has been fitted with a 'take off' cut down .300WM Barrel adn a CF breech block for .32 Long Colt Experiments.
A Stevens Model 44 is also being converted to CF and fitted with both .308" and .250" barrels and extractors by my gunsmith.

3.  Investigating replacements for .32 Long RF cartridges and loadings.  To use in the other Stevens Favorite barrel and action.
There are molds available for .32 Cast Lead bullets suitable for this use at 90gr. inside lube heeled RFN design.

This is Accurate Molds "31-090A" and others in the series.  "Matts Bullets" has cast bullets from my Mold and has my permission to use the mold to cast them for other customers.  He also has cast some "lyman #257420" bullets for me to try inmy .25 CAL experiments.

4.  A conversion of a 30 M1 Carbine action to try it as a .45 Winchester Magnum Rifle, with a Rifle length barrel.  this is going slow as my local Gunsmith Shop has been having start up problems after purchasing the shop from the retiring owner.

Still on the "Back burner" at my Gunsmith's with the Barrel threaded and temporarily fitted to my"NOS" Winchester USGI  Receiver.   he also has my Fulton Armory New M1 carbine receiver and a 1:10 Twist .308" 27" long barrel blank to fit up for me as a Rifle Length Straight Pull action (no gas system fitted).

5. NEW PROJECT:   I bought a Used Ruger .22 Convertible Single Six and commissioned my gunsmith to convert it to CF from RF, and install a 10-5/8" long .25ACP/6.35 Browning caliber Barrel on it, and to ream and chamber some 8 shot replacement .22WMR cylinders in various .25ACP adn Longer Cartridges.I have received the completed Frame and the First Cylinder, in .25ACP/6.35 Browning, to fire while my gunsmith finishes up the other cylinders over  time.

The Cylinder has not yet been remarked with the 'new cartridge data.


Overall view of Left side with the .25ACP cylinder installed.


Overall Right side view of revolver with cylinder removed and flled with cartridges.


Now I need to get to a range and see how it Shoots.  My gunsmith has fired it 32 times in his testing.

Best Regards,
Chev. Willaim
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