|Many hunters and shooters like to work on their own firearms, and the American Gunsmithing Institute has a comprehensive list of courses on DVDs that make it much easier to work on almost any kind of firearm at home.
AGI, located in Napa, California, has a new Technical Manual & Armorer's Course on the Winchester Models 1892, 1886 and 71 Rifles.
Hosted by Master Gunsmith and Certified Gunsmithing Instructor Bob Dunlap, this DVD unveils the mysteries of these John M. Browning classics.
A cutaway gun and AGI's extreme close-up video is used so that the viewer can actually see how all of the systems work and how the parts interact.
Among the items covered are:
• Discussion of the basic similarity of all of these Browning designs, including the later Model 71 in .348 Winchester
• Discussion of the improvements in this design over the earlier B. Tyler Henry designed Henry, 1866, 1873, and 1876 Winchesters
Design & Function
• Explanation and highlighting of the twin bar bolt locking system, and its difference from that of the later Model 94
• Demonstration of the feeding cycle and the cartridge stop
• Why does the cartridge rim continue to move up the lifter (carrier) after if stops lifting?
• How the lever forces the lifter up
• How the firing pin retraction operation is accomplished
• What keeps the gun from firing if it is not completely locked up?
• Interaction of the sear and the hammer cock notches shown, and the operation and configuration of the safety (half cock) notch
• Why the front of the hammer full cock notch cant just be trimmed back in a trigger job
• How the gun ejects, what causes it to do so and why
• Cartridge feed from carrier to chamber and the function of the ejector in this operation
• How the extractor snaps over
• How and why the carrier detenting plungers work
• Strengths and weakness(?) of the Browning designs in general
• Extensive disassembly of all parts other than the barrel
• Don’t try to bang out that magazine band from its dovetail, take it out the right way
• Difference shown and explained between older guns with flat hammer spring and newer guns with coil hammer springs
• Why you need a screw loose to get the lever out of the gun
• How to give the extractor more inward travel if necessary
• What can cause the cartridges to feed to the right or left if they are not of an even length
Cleaning & Lubrication
• AGI cleaning & lubrication methods shown, along with the reasons for their use
• Making sure you have no parts left over
• How to do the simple function checks as you assemble the gun
SPECIAL BONUS Cowboy Tune-up
• Parts to smooth, and how to smooth them
• What tensions can be reduced, what results to expect if you don’t follow the advice
• Smooth means smooth, what happens if you get too aggressive
• The commonly fouled-up trigger job, don’t be an amateur.
• What to leave alone and why
Steve Comus is a nationally recognized hunting editor with Safari Club International and a former WON Guns and Hunting Editor. His column appears every other week in WON and he can be reached at email@example.com.