winchester model 70


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timberwolf204
December 29, 2009, 09:11 PM
I just was talking to someone who was at a local gun shop and was told by gunsmith ( i did not witness this conversation) that from mid 80s to now model 70 winchesters are junk, as winchester tooling was junk until recent change of manufacturing. Shop has said that they get them in all the time for repairs (again he did not offer what kind of repairs) I have hunted hard with mine again it has never let me down. :fire: I have one that was bought around 1988 or so a winchester ranger plain model 70 in 7mm rem mag. I have had no problems with this gun, other then one season I had the factory grease in around firing pin near froze on me since then has been cleaned out and just light oil on it.

Issue to me is, I am planning on removing my high rise scope mount on it as here in PA rarely shoot more then 100 yards for deer. I want to put probably leupold mounts on it and change the scope on it as well to probably a leupold vx2 or vx3. I want to go out west for elk. Or shall i cut my losses. I dont believe that mine is junk, its not the prettiest gun but it does shoot well and has never let me down.

any ones input on this will be apprecited. :cool:

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BurningSaviour
December 29, 2009, 09:14 PM
I bought a Model 70 in .300 WinMag back in 99. There were some issues with the sling swivel studs, which the factory sent out replacements for. Other than that, I've never had an issues with it.

Ol` Joe
December 29, 2009, 09:18 PM
My M70 Classic SS in 270 was bought ~1990 and been on 2 trips to Canada since. It ain`t let me down yet.

ArmedBear
December 29, 2009, 09:20 PM
See the latest American Rifleman for the details of a problem that plagued them during that time period. According to the author, it was cheesy bedding using hot glue, and with some real bedding compound, even the worst Model 70s can become good, consistent shooters.

If it shoots well and feeds reliably, what do you want? It sounds like you have given it plenty of real-world testing.

Yes, a pre-64 was built like some custom guns are now (and even a beat-up old one is priced accordingly). The latest iteration is built more consistently and on better tooling than a New Haven gun. But YOUR gun matters, not the "average" Winchester from 1988. If yours is built right, keep it and use it.:)

I'm about to stick a VXII on a Model 70, but with Talley one-piece lightweight mounts. I want to keep it light, and I would recommend being cautious about weighing down a gun for Western elk hunting.

Will report back when I have shot the thing thus configured.

timberwolf204
December 29, 2009, 09:28 PM
thanks that makes me feel better anyway, and yes i have read the article in the American Rifleman. thanks i will keep checking back.

jimmyraythomason
December 29, 2009, 09:29 PM
I quit listening to folks who routinely call an entire line of guns(by model or manufacturer) junk. I usually own at least one example of whichever "junk" is being discussed and have only had good experiences with it/them. Whether it be guns ,optics or accessories,I rely on my own experience and not on anyone elses opinion. Like ArmedBear said if your's suits you then there is nothing to be concerned with.

ArmedBear
December 29, 2009, 09:33 PM
BTW if I had a Weatherby Crown Custom that didn't feed consistently and shot 4" groups, I would judge it accordingly. I wouldn't think it is a great rifle just because most Crown Customs are awfully nice.:)

It's your rifle that matters, not other rifles with the same name, either way.

Of course, it's good to know a particular rifle's reputation before you go to a gun show with a wad of cash. But if you already own the thing, and you've tested it thoroughly in the real world, tha counts for a LOT more than reputation.

shaggy430
December 29, 2009, 09:36 PM
I quit listening to folks who routinely call an entire line of guns(by model or manufacturer) junk.

Agreed. To the OP, I've got multiple model 70's from different time periods and all are great firearms.

USSR
December 29, 2009, 09:39 PM
I just was talking to someone who was at a local gun shop and was told by gunsmith...

Never believe what anyone who works for a gun shop says.

Don

ArmedBear
December 29, 2009, 09:50 PM
Well, it's entirely true that Winchester's guns had a lot of problems in the 1980s and 1990s. Some of them were made right; some were "Friday guns". A union shop with outdated, worn-out tooling, and a company bent on cost-saving and trading on its past reputation, didn't make consistent guns. Dog bites man. (There's another well-known company like that, today.)

So the gunsmith wasn't lying, necessarily, about Winchester in general during those dark times. I've liked and wanted to get a Model 70 for a while, but I didn't want to pay good money for a dubious rifle a few years ago. I was overjoyed when Winchester was resurrected recently, with better manufacturing, and I recently bought my first Model 70 hot off the line in South Carolina.

It just doesn't matter much TO YOU if OTHER PEOPLE'S guns were made consistently.

If YOUR gun was one of the bad ones, ditch it. If YOUR gun was one of the good ones, never sell it (a proven performer with a low resale value is truly worth a lot more to you than anyone else).:)

jmr40
December 29, 2009, 09:56 PM
From 1964 to about 1980 Winchester quality was spotty and they suffered greatly in the looks dept. Actually starting around 1980 Winchester reorganized and the guns made during the 80's and 90's are some of the best Winchesters made. A lot of people look down on them because they were push feed and not controlled round feed, but they are generall good guns and are bargains on the used market because they do not command the premium the CRF rifles do.

Winchester brought back the CRF rifles in 1994 and made both styles until the plant closed in 2006. The Classic rifles with CRF made in the 90's and early 2000's are great guns as well. Starting around 2002 or 2003 quality slipped again until a lot of the last ones made in 2005 and 2006 were pretty bad.

FN is now making them and apparently the new ones are as good as ever.

blue_ridge
December 29, 2009, 10:07 PM
See the latest American Rifleman for the details of a problem that plagued them during that time period. According to the author, it was cheesy bedding using hot glue, and with some real bedding compound, even the worst Model 70s can become good, consistent shooters.

I have one of those. It started life as a 70 Classic in 270, walnut chekcered stock and Boss barrel. It had the cheap hot glue bedding but shot pretty well. I had it bedded into a McMillan A2 and a Krieger heavy barrel installed, everything trued up. My gunsmith was delighted to do a Winchester, since every custom bolt gun seems to be a Remington. He said Winchesters are and always have been stiffer actions than Remingtons. He said it is easy to prove. Just mount one in a vice, put a dial indicator on the tang and hang a heavy weight from it to measure deflection. Winchester comes out stiffer every time. Mine shoots sub 0.5 MOA and I'm still working up loads for it to see just how far under 0.5 it will consistently shoot 5 shot groups. (and that is with the stock Winchester trigger, lightened some:D)

blue_ridge
December 29, 2009, 10:22 PM
FN is now making them and apparently the new ones are as good as ever.

I don't if anyone else feels this way, but I have avoided buying anything made by FN ever since they shut down the Winchester Connecticut plant and ceased making the model 94. I know they are making the 70 in the U.S. again, but I don't like how FN ran the Winchester name into the ground.

ArmedBear
December 29, 2009, 10:25 PM
FN ran the name into the ground?

I think that the Connecticut plant did that. The 94 wasn't worth making any more, the way it was being made.

The new Model 70s ARE a lot nicer, and they've introduced the 1892 again, which I'll take over the 94 if I have to choose.

blue_ridge
December 29, 2009, 10:34 PM
So do you have some specific knowledge how the management or labor force in the Connecticut plant made mistakes. I'm interested.

ArmedBear
December 29, 2009, 11:01 PM
How they did? Not sure.

I've seen some of the crap they made in the 1990s and it would stand to reason that either management or the labor force must have had SOME responsibility for it...

Who cares? They're gone, now. The Model 70 is once again a rifle that I can buy with confidence. That's more than could be said for a long while.

Uncle Mike
December 29, 2009, 11:07 PM
Never believe what anyone who works for a gun shop says.

Why is that...?

Mr_Pale_Horse
December 30, 2009, 11:28 AM
What the gunsmith said:

that from mid 80s to now model 70 winchesters are junk

What he meant: The current design (was a downgrade compared to the pre-64) and the percentage of guns with problems made in that time period was unacceptably high.

You got a good one, so stick with it.

So do you have some specific knowledge how the management or labor force in the Connecticut plant made mistakes.
1. They, along with alot of other durable goods makers, got it wrong on whether (or when) to upgrade to CNC processes and automation. They stuck with legacy machine tools and manual processes. The mahcines wore out, the labor cost got higher, and people retire. Technology refresh happens at a much higher rate than it did in say, the 50-70's, and you have to price that in.

2. They decided to go after the department store market, which drove down profit margins and made correcting point 1 impossible.

kentucky_smith
December 30, 2009, 01:32 PM
Quote:
Never believe what anyone who works for a gun shop says.


Why is that...?

Because everyone knows all reputable information comes from the internet. :D

Snakum
December 30, 2009, 03:27 PM
I have/had two Model 70 Black Shadows in 7mm mag and 300 win mag from the early 2000s. The 300 shoots on par with my old 700s and new 7600, while the M70 7mm blows everything else away by far (as did the old Rem 742 I stupidly just sold :( )

There is absolutely nothing wrong with USRA model 70s.

Steve in PA
December 30, 2009, 06:19 PM
I bought my .30/06 Model 70 XTR from the Marine Corps PX in 1982-83?? and I have never, ever had a problem or issue with this rifle. I realize this was eraly 80's not mid 80's but I've never seen anyone have a problem with a Model 70.

timberwolf204
December 30, 2009, 06:50 PM
thanks for all your help, yes i agree with the trigger being a bit stiff. getting that tuned up soon. My brother has a new winchester black shadow 300 WSM that has the hardest trigger pull of anygun i have fired. thanks again, i tend to think i got a good one then. thanks again,

jason

USSR
December 30, 2009, 07:57 PM
Quote:
Never believe what anyone who works for a gun shop says.

Quote:
Why is that...?


Because everyone knows all reputable information comes from the internet.

Well, at least after you sift thru all the BS on the internet, you stand a chance of finding a couple of guys with outstanding credentials and no BS. They are here on this site, if you know where to look.

Don

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