New Member with a Model 81

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Fred
Posts: 107
Joined: Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:10 pm

New Member with a Model 81

Post by Fred » Thu Feb 27, 2014 12:02 am

Hello everyone! I recently picked up a scoped late model 81 in .35 Remington after becoming frustrated with the cost and lead times of custom .35 Rem T/C Contender barrels. For the price of a T/C barrel delivered later, I could have an entirely new rifle now, so here I am. I found the long-recoil action a neat mechanism relative to what's available on today's market and since I mooonlight as a machinist, I'm a sucker for interesting clockwork.

Would it be a safe bet that no one will cry, "foul" if I further modify an already modified M-81? If being drilled for a scope mount virtually negates its collector value then I'll sleep well filling the holes with weld, refinishing it and either installing a reflex sight or a pistol scope down the barrel jacket a ways. I'm hoping that the accuracy with a scope is better than I'm anticipating with the sights floating somewhat independent of the barrel. I still need to do a teardown and verify it's safe to shoot.

I reload and wanted to get into casting too and figured that this would be a different gun and cartridge on the firing line at my local silhouette matches. If it's a shooter then I'll try and fill a freezer with porkchops when I get the chance.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to learning more here and sharing my little project. I'll post a picture when I get time.

Thank you.

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Hardrada55
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Location: Southwest Oklahoma
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Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by Hardrada55 » Thu Feb 27, 2014 8:12 am

Hey Fred, Welcome to the forum! I'm sure your latest acquisition will surely bring some interesting comments on the firing line. Good Luck! and let us see some pix soon. W
...the right of citizens to bear arms is just one more guarantee against arbitrary government, one more safeguard against the tyranny which now appears remote in America..."
- Hubert H. Humphrey, "Gun" magazine, Feb. '60

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jack1653
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Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by jack1653 » Thu Feb 27, 2014 8:27 am

Hey Fred,

Welcome to the forum. We are glad you found us. You don't have to worry about anyone calling "foul" about what you are wanting to do. First of all you hit the nail on the head by saying that the rifle had already been altered. I think most of us agree that it is your rifle and you can do whatever you want with it. Those of us who holler are usually referring to the rifles that have never had any alterations and just hate to see a scope put on these rifles. There are many rifles out there with scopes whose owners would probably be willing to trade for one that doesn't have one.

We hope that you will post some before and after pictures of your rifle. I know that you will enjoy the new toy and hope that it gives you as much pleasures as most of us have found in getting one of the old spring poles.

Regards,

jack1653

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81police
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Location: TEXAS

Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by 81police » Thu Feb 27, 2014 3:04 pm

Welcome Fred! And I just wanted to say, I think reaching for a Model 81 in 35 was far better than waiting on a T/C 35 barrel...but I may be biased :D
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Fred
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Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by Fred » Thu Feb 27, 2014 4:54 pm

Once I get the chance I'll look into reverse-engineering the barrel assembly and see if I can remanufacture some of it in lighter materials and perhaps incorporate an integral Form 1 suppressor if the ATF eForms site ever starts working again. It might be cake to shorten the barrel as the sleeve will keep the ATF happy about overall lengths.

I'll be sure to post before and after pictures, however that will all be a ways down the road. :D

Thanks for the warm welcome.

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81police
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Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by 81police » Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:10 pm

There's a member on here who has looked extensively into modifying one for a suppressor, maybe he'll chime in.

And don't forget, any weight additions or reductions will have an impact on the function of the rifle somehow...with the recoiling barrel and all. A really cool mod several of us have had to ours are shortening the barrel assembly down to 17". Pretty slick setup, functions well too!
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norm
Posts: 81
Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2010 8:39 am

Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by norm » Fri Feb 28, 2014 7:32 am

Fred, If you do start casting your own bullets for your 35 Remington I can highly recommend the RCBS 35-200-FN mold. It works well for me and a lot of other 35 fans.

Fred
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Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by Fred » Fri Feb 28, 2014 12:30 pm

81police wrote:Any weight additions or reductions will have an impact on the function of the rifle somehow...with the recoiling barrel and all.
I figured that I could remanufacture the barrel assembly and have a "switch barrel" One for factory loads in a factory gun and another, all jazzed up using tailored handloads.
81police wrote:Several of us have had to ours are shortening the barrel assembly down to 17".
How does the 5" reduction affect the mechanism? Seems that the lighter assembly would need a stiffer buffer spring to maintain the same function as the factory setup.
norm wrote:Fred, If you do start casting your own bullets for your 35 Remington I can highly recommend the RCBS 35-200-FN mold. It works well for me and a lot of other 35 fans.
Thanks for the heads-up. I have read a lot about that mould as well as the 190 Ranchdog.

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81police
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Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by 81police » Fri Feb 28, 2014 2:04 pm

I have yet to have a malfunction with them. Have two right now, a Model 8 in 35, and a Model 81 in 35 with 15 round magazine. Haven't noticed any signs of stress to any part of the rifle, they continue to function just fine.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cgczA5W-9b4
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jack1653
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Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by jack1653 » Fri Feb 28, 2014 7:12 pm

Howdy again,

I spent some time and dollars trying to get a suppressor for these rifles. I went to there reputable rifle manufactures and each was eager to try and get a suppressor to work on these rifles. The good news was that a titanium suppressor could be made and attached to the barrel. It would not be cheap compared to normal suppressors. For it to work it would require an extension to the existing barrel or a new barrel with the appropriate length added to allow for the barrel retraction into the jacket. Titanium was suggested because of the lighter weight that would be added to the barrel.

I was given many reasons why this rifle was not conducive to having a suppressor and quite frankly I didn't understand the physics and ballistic explanations. There were a series of issue involving the springs in the jacket and the bolt recoil spring. I think the issue that puzzled me most was the explanation that the suppressor would not do what would be expected in the level of noise reduction.

When asked why I would want a suppressor on this "old" rifle I could not give a valid reason other than I wanted one. The expense of getting a suppressor was not the issue on this project. It was the concern from the professional rifle builders that convinced me to drop the idea, so I did. There was expressed concern about potential catostrophic failure and heightened degree of reluctance to take on the liability was enough to convince me to leave well enough alone.

JMB designed this rifle with some very unique features which do not lend itself to modern day modifications such as suppressors. Having said this, I will tell you that a few members including myself have rifles that have been altered with shorter barrels or as we call them "carbines". I agreed with 81police in saying that they perform excellently and you can see some videos of 81police and me shooting them.

I do not wish to discourage anyone from pursuing radical ideas for this rifle but simply pass on some wisdom that has been passed on to me. Use this rifle as it was intended and if you want a suppressed rifle buy one that is manufactured for this feature.

Best of luck regardless of what you choose to do.

Regards,

jack1653

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Phyrbird
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Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by Phyrbird » Sat Mar 01, 2014 12:22 am

A note from the earlier post. I got hoooked on the 35 Rem with the Contender 14" bbl. One of the early ones with a hand lapped factory barrel, A TACK DRIVER in your hand. Just don't put your elbow on the concrete bench top when firing. After the 3rd shot you wonder why your elbow hurts, :( sometime later you realize a sandbag under the elbow is a brilliant idea :!: :!: :lol: That pistol pile drives you arm.
From the Contender it went to a Remington 760 (last production year for the 35Rem) what a sweet deer gun. It also turns out to be a lot more accurate than the 742 3006 I had to trade off. (meat platter vs a 50 cent piece)
Of course then Jackitis made me comatose, when I woke there were 2 Model 81s in the stable, both 35Rem.
Shame ain't it :?: :oops:
If you look there's an old Handloader article that details some higher pressure loads for the 760 ONLY the 760.
Another note: It could be feasible to EDM compensator ports (like Magnaport) in the barrel and jacket for recoil compensation. I'd worry about gas cutting of the spring during firing though. Has anyone experience with this?
Of course this Mod would not be a great idea for a truly original rifle, maybe one of the Frankenguns or a beater.
Phyrbird
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Fred
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Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by Fred » Mon Mar 03, 2014 4:06 pm

jack1653 wrote:I do not wish to discourage anyone from pursuing radical ideas for this rifle but simply pass on some wisdom that has been passed on to me.
Thank you, Jack, for the wisdom. I will try to quiet that German part of me that's always tinkering. I was merely considering that the 35rem is a relatively low-pressure cartridge with high expansion ratio and might benefit from a compact baffle stack incorporated into the barrel sleeve. Since the form 1 wait times and expense complicate the matter it's easy to put that one on the back burner. As the old engineering saying goes, "If it ain't broken then engineer it until it is." :) In the meantime some titanium replacement parts are easy to make and don't require ATF endorsement.
Phyrbird wrote:ust don't put your elbow on the concrete bench top when firing. After the 3rd shot you wonder why your elbow hurts,
Phyrbird, I know all about that raw elbow! I do like my higher recoil toys and that bench has bitten me a few times. :lol:

Fred
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Joined: Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:10 pm

Re: New Member with a Model 81

Post by Fred » Fri Mar 14, 2014 11:01 am

I made a picture thread as promised. ;)

viewtopic.php?f=6&t=3689

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