My model 81

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Joined: Sat Jul 30, 2011 11:39 am

My model 81

Post by superc »

I encountered this Model 81 in a Front Royal pawn shop two decades ago. It was cheap (about $80) because it had no firing pin. In caliber .35 Remington. Hello Brownells. Getting the new firing pin only took about 2 weeks. Figuring out how to disassemle the gun took a few more days. That was in the days of dial up. An email to Remignton resulted in an email with a pdf manual for it. Once I had that and learned the secret of the cocking handle, it was soon restored to full function.

I have taken several deer with it since then. My primary complaint about using it as a thick woods gun is that compared to my Winchester 94AE Trapper Carbine (in .45 Colt) or even my Spanish 1916 Mauser short rifle, the 81 is incredibly over long, clumsy, and heavy. It is not at all well suited for bringing with you when crawling through 7 foot high stands of blackberry bushes. Likewise it is not the best choice for quick snap shots on deers that dart out behind you as you walk through a meadow. Many of the deer I shoot are taken at ranges of less than 50 yards. Even with the light loads I have yet to recover a single bullet. They just punch on through and go gosh knows where after that. [An identical complaint for the .308s in the 1916 Mauser.] That being said, it is a superb tree stand gun (once you get it up the tree).

The gun is very accurate and holds (5 round capacity of course) many more shots than I have ever needed. I often only stick 3 rounds into it. I do not find the recoil to be a bother and usually I don't notice any.

At the range from a sandbagged bench position the Redfield peep sights (once aligned with the target) easily allow all 5 rounds to be placed into a playing card at 100 yards. In truth no greater accuracy than that is needed where I hunt.

I am sad that Remington dropped this model. Mine was made in 1937.

I would have loved to have seen a lighter version with a thiner stock and a 16 inch barrel.

I will probably one of these days swap out the brass bead front sight for one of the fiber optic types.
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Re: My model 81

Post by 81police »

Great rifle SuperC! I only wish they still cost $80!

"I would have loved to have seen a lighter version with a thiner stock and a 16 inch barrel"

Pete Verschneider built a few 17" carbines, one of which you can find at the link below. An overall length of 35" it's a real thumper!

Cam Woodall
Site Co-Administrator

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