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Old 05-25-2020, 03:33 PM
Big Larry
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Stainless steel



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I wonder if there is anyone alive that can take the stainless bbl. off a 1926 M52 without scratching up the japanned finish? Thanks, Big Larry
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Old 05-25-2020, 03:46 PM
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This is kind of like asking if anyone knows of a good hens teeth dentist. Good luck with that.

Last edited by Trailboss; 05-25-2020 at 03:50 PM.
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Old 05-25-2020, 04:11 PM
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Shouldn't be too difficult. Win. 52 barrels are not tightened with a lot of torque from the factory. On some of them I've taken off, the weight of the heavy action wrench & handle was almost enough to unscrew them. It's awfully easy to over torque them when putting the barrel back on and going over center vis a vis the sight holes. Use wooden blocks and rosin under a press (I use hydraulic) and a good fitting action wrench and it should be no problem. I've never removed an original SS barrel, but have removed barrels off a large number of 52's, from 1925 models through the E models with very little effort and no bluing scratched.
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Old 05-25-2020, 08:50 PM
Big Larry
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Originally Posted by SBS View Post
Shouldn't be too difficult. Win. 52 barrels are not tightened with a lot of torque from the factory. On some of them I've taken off, the weight of the heavy action wrench & handle was almost enough to unscrew them. It's awfully easy to over torque them when putting the barrel back on and going over center vis a vis the sight holes. Use wooden blocks and rosin under a press (I use hydraulic) and a good fitting action wrench and it should be no problem. I've never removed an original SS barrel, but have removed barrels off a large number of 52's, from 1925 models through the E models with very little effort and no bluing scratched.
Problem is, bluing is much harder than a painted on Japanned finish, and it can be scratched with a fingernail.
I have asked several people if they would do it, and no one will touch it.
I have pretty much decided to leave the two holes that I plugged, in the receiver, and forget it. That is the only distraction on the rifle. I have a Lyman 48-T that will fit the holes, but I consider that a distraction too. I think I will just leave the two plugged holes and go with that. The rifle also came with a Winchester globe front sight. The serial number is, 7001 from 1926 and the bbl. is dated "26" so I am quite sure it came from the factory originally wth the stainless bbl. This rifle is a collectors prize, especially with the amount of finish still on the bbl. Most all are worn off. I think, in the words of Scott Duff, famous Garand GUHRU, "leave it alone" seems to be the way to go. Thanks for your post. Big Larry
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Old 05-26-2020, 12:49 AM
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The Japan finish was used on a lot of metal products made in Japan after the war. It is a lacquer and thus, as Big Larry says, quite fragile.
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Old 05-26-2020, 07:39 AM
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I'd say no. Why would you want to?
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Old 05-26-2020, 10:21 AM
Big Larry
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I'd say no. Why would you want to?
I have another 1926 dated M52 and want to change the bbls. That way, I would not have the two holes, but I am getting the opinion I should leave it alone. That is probably what I will do, as no one will change the bbl.s without a guarantee that they won't scratch the finish. I have never seen a M52 stainless with this much finish remaining. Thanks. all. Big Larry
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Old 05-26-2020, 10:49 AM
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Show us a picture, I've never seen that style.
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Old 05-26-2020, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Big Larry View Post
I have another 1926 dated M52 and want to change the bbls. That way, I would not have the two holes, but I am getting the opinion I should leave it alone. That is probably what I will do, as no one will change the bbl.s without a guarantee that they won't scratch the finish. I have never seen a M52 stainless with this much finish remaining. Thanks. all. Big Larry
I would not touch it either but I have to wonder how Winchester installed the barrel without damaging the finish or was the finish applied after the barrel was installed on the blued receiver?

Best Regards,
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Old 05-26-2020, 11:13 AM
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Larry, I am wondering why you describe the finish as "Japanned". I am certainly no expert on stainless barreled 52's, but I don't think Winchester would have used a different finish on 52 stainless barrels than they used on M54/70 SS barrels. From an expert, Roger Rule, author of "The Rifleman's Rifle", page 27:

"Stainless steel barrels, when special ordered or as furnished intermittently for .220 Swift chamberings, required special attention. In experimenting with these, Winchester iron plated, polished, browned and final polished these barrels. Results were poor as polishing, needed for color consistency, could not be controlled. The iron plating was often removed (during polishing), especially on high edges, outside corners, etc. To avoid this and retain uniformity, the factory started lightly sandblasting the barrels before iron plating. Browning was still used but color differences were concealed by the mottled texture caused by the sandblasting, and final polishing was omitted. The result was a dull finish uniform in appearance."

Browning as mentioned above is explained in the text as what we call rust bluing. As you probably know, SS barrels were offered as early as 1925 in both the 52 and the Mod. 54. I cannot imagine Winchester applying a lacquer finish to 52's and iron plating the 54 barrels. I have encountered M70 SS barrels plated and blued up through at least the 1950 years and have removed a number of them and have not found them particularly vulnerable to scratching. Remington used the same process in the late 70's on their magnum barrels for a few years. If subjected to rough service, you will see bright spots where the plating was scraped off. Remember, you would have to go through the bluing and then scrape off the iron plating to get to the stainless below. If you have a lacquer finish that can be scraped off with a fingernail, I would have my doubts about it being the original factory finish.
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Old 05-26-2020, 12:49 PM
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I don't know about the Model 52 but the other models of Winchester .22s that were supplied with stainless steel barrels such as the Model 56, 57 and others, did in fact have a black lacquer finish and were not browned like the Model 70. I assume because they were lower cost .22s Winchester used the cheaper and easier finish on them.

Best Regards,


.
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Old 05-26-2020, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by SBS View Post
Larry, I am wondering why you describe the finish as "Japanned". I am certainly no expert on stainless barreled 52's, but I don't think Winchester would have used a different finish on 52 stainless barrels than they used on M54/70 SS barrels. From an expert, Roger Rule, author of "The Rifleman's Rifle", page 27:

"Stainless steel barrels, when special ordered or as furnished intermittently for .220 Swift chamberings, required special attention. In experimenting with these, Winchester iron plated, polished, browned and final polished these barrels. Results were poor as polishing, needed for color consistency, could not be controlled. The iron plating was often removed (during polishing), especially on high edges, outside corners, etc. To avoid this and retain uniformity, the factory started lightly sandblasting the barrels before iron plating. Browning was still used but color differences were concealed by the mottled texture caused by the sandblasting, and final polishing was omitted. The result was a dull finish uniform in appearance."

Browning as mentioned above is explained in the text as what we call rust bluing. As you probably know, SS barrels were offered as early as 1925 in both the 52 and the Mod. 54. I cannot imagine Winchester applying a lacquer finish to 52's and iron plating the 54 barrels. I have encountered M70 SS barrels plated and blued up through at least the 1950 years and have removed a number of them and have not found them particularly vulnerable to scratching. Remington used the same process in the late 70's on their magnum barrels for a few years. If subjected to rough service, you will see bright spots where the plating was scraped off. Remember, you would have to go through the bluing and then scrape off the iron plating to get to the stainless below. If you have a lacquer finish that can be scraped off with a fingernail, I would have my doubts about it being the original factory finish.
Winchester used the Japanned finish on lots of their rifles. The model 56 had stainless as an option and those bbls. also had the Japanned finish. The M94's and M55's also had this option. The little Winchester cannon had a blued bbl. while the carrier was Japanned. I don't know about the M54's as I don't collect them. I have absolutely no idea why they didn't blue them if they had a way to do it. I know the finish on my M52 bbl. is correct. The flaking of the "paint" has been discussed many times and one thing is for sure, they are very scarce.
Maybe JWA or SEEWIN can shed some light on the subject. Thanks, Big Larry
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Old 05-26-2020, 12:54 PM
Big Larry
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Show us a picture, I've never seen that style.
The only difference between a stainless and regular bbl markings on a m52 are the words Stainless Steel. The rest of the rifle is exactly the same as a blued one. Big Larry
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Old 05-26-2020, 02:32 PM
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The 52 Stainless Steel barrels were Japanned, not iron plated and blued like the Swifts and other 70's in SS. All the lever action Winchesters as well as the shotgun barrels in SS were Japanned as other 22's already mentioned. Early 54 SS barrels were finished this way as well. These early SS barrels were only offered from 1926 until the early 30's. I also have a early factory C model with experimental SS barrel. It had no finish what so ever.
Steve
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Old 05-26-2020, 04:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Big Larry View Post
I have another 1926 dated M52 and want to change the bbls. That way, I would not have the two holes, but I am getting the opinion I should leave it alone. That is probably what I will do, as no one will change the bbl.s without a guarantee that they won't scratch the finish. I have never seen a M52 stainless with this much finish remaining. Thanks. all. Big Larry
I'd never modify an original model. It would lose all it's collector appeal.






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