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Ever had a really tight-fitting barrel that didn't want to come back out of the receiver? I have. This time it's a Volquartsen that I installed with a mallet. I wanted to fix the beat-up finish on the receiver so I needed to separate the barrel from the receiver.

I decided to build a fixture that I could put the barreled action into, and press the barrel out instead of trying to push the receiver off the barrel with a mallet. It's simple, and works pretty well.

You need:
  • two 1x1 pieces of wood, one about 2" long and the other about a foot
  • a short length of 5/8" dowel
  • a flat piece of wood - I used a 1x4, a 2x4 would work too
  • a 1/4" x 2" plank
  • a 5" C-clamp

First thing to do is drill a 1" hole in the 1x4. This is for the barrel. You'll need to elongate the hole so the receiver block can fit through it as well. Position the 1/4" thick piece next to the hole so the receiver "foot" is supported, and fasten it down so it doesn't move. It ends up looking like this:

Here you can see how the barreled action fits, and how the 1/4" thick piece supports the "foot" of the receiver:

Next step is to cut a piece of 5/8" dowel to about 1 1/2". This is the part that contacts the breech and pushes the barrel out. Set it on top of the breech. Make sure it's centered pretty well, otherwise it will catch on the receiver as the barrel pushes out. If you wanted to get fancy you could put a pilot on the dowel to keep it centered on the barrel.

Now you need two pieces of 1x1, a long one and a short one. The long one is the lever of the press, and the short one is the fulcrum. The lengths aren't really critical. Arrange them as shown here:

Now, you can crank down with the C-clamp and as you do, the lever will put pressure on the dowel, which will in turn push the barrel out. Just be careful not to let the barrel hit the floor when it comes out!

In my setup the lever started bending but didn't break. I guess you could substitute 1" square steel tubing if the wood isn't strong enough.
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