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October 24, 2007

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A Case of Straight Priorities

Here is a nice story. Glenrock Blue is a tiny gunshop cleverly hidden on a back street in the miniscule town of Glenrock, Wyoming. It's run by the husband-and-wife team of Phil and Di Filing. Phil handles the metalwork and Di does the stocks, and together they bring guns back from the dead. You bring in some old beater that looks like it fought and lost at Little Big Horn and they will have it looking better than it did when it left the factory.

Anyway, I was there a few weeks ago and Phil handed me a Model 54 Winchester bolt-action .30/06. The serial number was 90-something, which meant it had been made in the late 1920s. It was in fine shape, except for some rust at the muzzle and on the front sight ramp, and it still had an ancient 2.5X Weaver scope mounted right down on the receiver, ahead of the bolt.

The owner wanted the rust polished out and the barrel reblued, which would just about ruin the gun for a collector (As it was, it would bring $1,500 or so from someone who wanted it bad enough.), and Phil told him so.

"I know," said the owner, "but my father gave it to me 50 years ago, and it was in perfect shape, and I want to give it to my son in the same condition."

Now there, I think, is a man with his values as they should be.

If you're interested Glenrock Blue, the phone is 307-436-2330; gunbluing.com. Be advised, however, that they don't turn guns around overnight. They are famous among shooters of taste and culture, and they have a lot of guns to work on.


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Black Rifle Addict

That is a nice story Dave, and I agree the man does have his values in the right place!


May there be stories written about the new guns being purchased now in 80 years.

Here's a bit of news for all shooters I hope is interesting.

The Model 70 Is Back

Morgan, Utah - The Winchester Model 70 is one of the most respected bolt-action rifle designs in the world. Winchester Repeating Arms is excited to announce the return of the Model 70 for 2008. The All-American Model 70s will be built by American craftsmen in Columbia, South Carolina, at the same state-of-the-art factory (FN Manufacturing) as the rifles and machine guns used by American's Armed Forces. They are made to the exact ISO 9001 standard of quality that the U.S. Government insists upon for military firearms.

For 2008 the new Model 70 has the all new M.O.A.™ Trigger System, improved fit and finish and enhanced accuracy to go along with its classic Pre-64 Controlled Round Feeding, Three-Position safety and solid, sure handling.

M.O.A.™ Trigger System. The new Model 70 M.O.A.Trigger System is the most precise three-lever trigger system ever offered to sportsmen. Operating on a simple pivoting lever principle, the trigger mechanism has been completely redesigned to exhibit zero take up, zero creep and zero overtravel. The pull weight ranges from 3 to 5 pounds and is factory-set at 3 3/4 pounds. Because of the enhanced ergonomics, wide smooth triggerpiece and 2:1 mechanical advantage created by the unique design geometry, it actually feels like half that weight.

Three-Position Safety. The improved three-position safety on the new Model 70 has proven effective and highly popular with hunters and shooters for decades. Convenient to operate with the thumb of the firing hand, the Model 70 safety lifts the firing pin away from the sear. Then the safety selector is in the middle position, the action can still be operated, allowing unfired cartridges to be cycled with the safety on.

Hammer-Forged Barrel. Model 70 barrels are cold hammer-forged from a solid billet of steel for accuracy and long life. Massive rotary hammers shape the barrel steel around a mandrel to create the rifling. The barrel is threaded, target crowned and installed on the receiver. The chamber is then reamed and the bolt is headspaced. This results in 1 MOA accuracy for three-shot groups using properly managed barrel, quality match ammo and superior optics under ideal weather and range conditions.

Blade-Type Ejector. The Model 70's blade-type ejector allows full control when ejecting a fired case. When pulling the bolt back slowly the empty case pops out gently, which is perfect for target shooters and varminters. Pulling the bolt back smartly allows the empty case to clear the port with greater force. The blade-type ejector helps to eliminate short-stroking malfunctions.

The new Winchester Model 70 will be offered in a Super Grade, Featherweight™ Deluxe, Sporter Deluxe and Extreme Weather SS models for 2008. All will feature a thick black Pachmayr® Decelerator® pad that will help take the bite out of recoil.

The Super Grade will be offered in 30-06 Sprg. and 300 Win. Mag and will feature a fancy grade walnut stock with contrasting black fore-end tip and pistol grip cap and a sculpted shadowline cheekpiece. Suggested Retail $1,149.00

The Featherweight Deluxe has an angled comb walnut stock with Schnabel fore-end and satin finish with elegant cut checkering. It will be offered in popular long and short action calibers, including WSM chamberings. Suggested Retail $999.00 to $1,049.00.

The Sporter Deluxe features a satin finished walnut stock with cut checkering on trim fore-end and pistol grip, along with a sculpted cheekpiece. Available in popular long action and short action WSM calibers. Suggested Retail $999.00 to $1,049,99.

The Extreme Weather SS's premium Bell and Carlson composite stock features a trim, light feel with textured matte surface that gives a sure grip in any conditions. The Extreme Weather SS has a free floating, fluted stainless barrel to help minimize weight. Available in popular long action and short action WSM calibers. Suggested Retail $1,149.00 tp $1,199.00. Delivery on all models will begin in June of 2008.


Clay Cooper

My Father passed away last month and I inherited his Remington Model 721. He had it since 1950 something and topped by one of the first Redfield Widefield 3x9 to hit Tucson Az back in 1967 by Jensons Sporting Goods. Gave it a good cleaning and placed it in the safe for my Grandson to give him someday.

Ralph the Rifleman

The gentleman with the Mod 54, sounds like my father. To him, he based the value of an item on working with it, and not selling it for profit.I sold an old .22 semi-auto a number of years ago my dad had purchased for my brother and I to shoot. After my father's passing a few years ago, I still regret selling that .22 rifle.My mother gave his remaining guns, a .270 Bolt gun and 12gauge auto,which don't have much value on the used gun market, but to me they are worth millions.


It's nice to hear that there are still people out there who care!
I have a shotgun that I would dearly love to have returned to shooting condition! Beautiful arm, had too little appreciation for what I had as a teen to take care of it properly!
Might be a good reason to drive up to Wyoming next summer!


clark mcdonough


Is Jenson's still around? When I was at the UofA years ago, it was one of my favorite places to go and ogle firearms. (I still have all the ones I managed to buy with the $$ I scraped together)

JA Demko

Who cares what somebody does with an old beater like a Model 54? It'd be different if he was profaning a true classic like a Model 88.

Steve C

Nice to see someone who hasn't put a price on family tradition. Too many guns (and cars, and homes, and friendships) exists only as "investments".

Clay Cooper

clark mcdonough, You got my curiosity up so I called out there. Jenens closed shop last October and was bought out and is now 2nd Amendment Sports, 5146 East Pima Street, Tucson, AZ 85712.

Clay Cooper

When I divorced my wife back in 91, she says couldn’t stand Desert Storm and the Military anymore, whatever. The moron she married gave me an old pump 22 rifle that the Trigger assembly was just nasty and would allow the hammer to fall causing the round to go off. Gave it a good cleaning and sold it for 150 bucks. I got a better deal than the guy she married! True story! And by the way, the Angel I’m married to says if I’m going out, she’s going to! I like that and we never had a fight or argument. I got her a Knight Wolverine 50 cal MZ topped with a Tasco Red Dot. Don’t make her mad. She’s originally from California and Italian blooded and she hit the coke can at 50 yards on the first shot! Never fired a gun!!


My dad let me borrow his old 12 Gauge JC Higgens for a weekend a few years before I started to be able to afford nice shotguns. It had an awful poly choke on it, but I could really hit w/ it. My dad bought it when he was a teen. He's 70 now. I took it to a gunsmith to have it re-blued as a surprise. The gunsmith told me not to do it, so I didn't. Later, I told my Dad what I was going to do and he told me if I would have done it, he would have disinherited me. Man, I'm glad I listened to that smith!

Gerald Keller

My Grandfather bought a first year of production Savage Mod.99
250-3000.He brought it down from Michigan to Florida in 1918 and it had the misfortune of being under salt water for several days during the 1921 hurricane that hit Oldsmar.He cleaned it up and it was carried each season till he quit hunting in the late 40's.
In spite of the barrel being pitted and the barrel threads(It is a take down) being loose,My brother and I shot it for years.
My Brother killed his first deer with it in 1961.When I took it over in 1979,it was rough to say the least.Grampa probably paid $35
for it in 1915.I paid over $700 to have Harry McGowan replace the barrel and I re-finished the wood and metal,and I think I got a bargain!
I wouldn't trade it for anything,and someday I'll pass it down to a grandson or granddaughter.Some things you just can't put a price on.


My grandfather got a Stevens Model 311 SxS in 16 ga. from his dad (I think), and then passed it on to my dad when he died. As a teenager, I asked my dad why he didn't have it reconditioned, as the blueing was worn off, the case coloring on the receiver faded, and the finish on the stock worn off. Dad said that he wouldn't because it had probably killed more game than every other gun in the house combined, and that's the way he remembered it looking when he was a boy so he was gonna leave it like that. Makes me think that someday my son might have a worn looking Stevens that better not be refinished either.

Ralph the Rifleman

Hey fellow bloggers-and Dave!
I found a .35 Whelen at a local sporting goods store in a Rem-700ADL model. I will probably buy it, but what do you think of the caliber?
Clay-What about Grizz hunting with this caliber?
Looking for your input boys, and thanks.

Dr. Ralph

What to do with inherited guns... pass them on as they were passed on to you or better them? That is the question. I have a 1917 Winchester Model 1912 that my grandfather recieved for his thirteenth birthday. Someone has added a horrendous rubber butt pad to it. My father's humpback Browning A-5 had the end of the barrel blown off by my cousin because of a little snow problem and also sports the poly-choke. We don't sell guns, we pass them, on. Life is good...

Mike Strehlow

My dad has a couple of my grandfather's guns, and they'll come to me; a 1903 .22 Winchester Automatic, and a Model 94 in .38-55, 26" octagon barrel, tang sights, and curved brass buttplate. A collector would have a field day with either gun, except no collector will ever get his hands on them. They were Grandpa's.

.35 Whelen for griz? Personally I wouldn't know. But hunters used to shoot lions and elephants in Africa with the .350 Rigby and the 9.3x62 Mauser. Ballistically the Whelen is right in there with those two rounds.

Dr. Ralph

Ralph, since WA Mtnhunter is chasing Wapiti I'll fill in. He loves the .35... says it is all a man ever needs for out west and you'd better buy it. NOW...

Clay Cooper

Ralph the Rifleman

35 Whelen isn't punk!

I would use it!


Ralph - .35 Whelen is one of the best cartridges ever (then again, I love all .35's). Mine hits hard and accurately with Barnes 225g TSX. Core-Lokts make inexpensive reloads. Can also load Partitions, Accubonds, Bear Claws, Gamekings, A-Frames, even Woodleighs. Probably have to order the bullets, though. Only drawback is factory ammo - you MIGHT find 200g Remingtons in a shop.

Ed J


35 Whelen; 250gr @ 2500 if zeroed at 200 yds shoots point blank to 250 yds (8" target). only 10" drop to 300 yds and 2000 ftpds energy @300 yds. Thats IMHO good for anything on the North American continent.

Ralph the Rifleman

Sounds good..thanks for the info everyone; the .35 Whelen will be warming a spot in my gun safe very soon!

To bad the cple in Arizona sold out.I got a couple ofold guns that need some mechanical work done. The new gun-smiths of today only know (sometimes)how toinstall abase and scope to a new rifle. The good old fashion gun smiths are long gone.Mine stopped working at age 75 due to his wife's sickness.Sadly,but now I got to find a new gunsmith someplace.These old hand-me-down firearms,if working should be left as is. Do not try to make a new gun out of them. I have firearms (I'm 72) that I bought when I was a teenager and they will go to my only Son. Some never been fired and will not be by me.I do have a Custom built on a Mauser action that( cost thousands) needs a tad of trigger work on the dble set trigges. Wt is only 12 oz a tad light wearing globes,would prefer it to be at about 2-3 lbs. I tried the set screw but does not change the pull wt.something needs redoing.Another question. I have a 30-06 custom made on Mauser action, orig Mauser with swing at top safety and not scope mounted. Has 2 leaf rear sights and a slide in the rib on top of bbl at muzzle for the beaded front sight. Gun shoots way to low at 50 yds. Do I need to lower the rear sights or raise in order for the firearm to shoot lower. I;ve filed the rear V as much as possible, but stil shoots too low, any help would be appreciated. Im not a gun smith, do pratice a lot and hunt when I can where-ever, either here in N.C. or the Rockies, but all those hunting guns have scopes,mounted by my retired gunsmith .Back to sights, would it help to have the front sight raised a tad. The front sight slides into the l/4"x l/4" with a set screw to hold in place. Will need the sight cut in l/2 and some metal added to raise .Tried to find a sight from Brownells,but none like mine. My gun was made in Italy many years ago. HELP PLEASE

Clay Cooper

Take the 7mm mag and punch it out to .35 cal. Very Interesting! Remington are you listening? 7mm Rem Mag makes darn good 338 Win Mag cases!

Rocky Mtn Hunter

The above was written by Rocky Mtn Hunter,Sorry it was left off, and the l/4"high x 5/16"s wide rib runs from the muzzle to the breech with sights mountd on top of rib ,the front sight slides in from the front end of muzzle not mounted on top of rib. Any and all advice appreciated.

Rocky Mtn Hunter

My comments were written just above Clay's.

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