Converting a 32-20 to a 218Bee? - THR

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Old August 17, 2014, 04:32 AM   #1
Join Date: August 20, 2005
Location: Australia
Posts: 333
Converting a 32-20 to a 218Bee?

Hi guys, I have a hankering for a 218Bee, they are however expensive and even then might have worn barrels, especially as they were more commonly shooting jackets than larger bore model 92 (or 92 based rifles) like 44-40.

I thought it might be wise to get a 32-20 with a worn out barrel and a good action and have it re barrelled for 218BEE.

A lever set up for 32-20 would need anything other than a re-barrel?

How much would this cost roughly including the price of a new barrel?

Also, I think I would be better of going for a 1:14" twist instead of the 1:16", it lets me stabilise bullets at a slower speed. I would like to shot cast and a 1:16 twist means a minimum speed of 1900fps for a 55 grainer whereas with a 1:14" I could go from 1000fps to the limit of the bullet or the projectile. Likewise for a 44 grainer the 1:16" needs 1600fps whereas the 1:14" needs a mere 700fps (too slow).
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Old August 17, 2014, 08:50 AM   #2
Ohen Cepel
Join Date: February 4, 2003
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Posts: 2,072
Have you looked about re-lining the barrel down to a .218Bee? May be cheaper and not change the looks/handling of the rifle. That would be my way to go if it were an option. If you do opt to line something I would research it more, since you don't seem to have the rifle yet you may want to see which are easier/cheaper to do the lining to.

These guys have the liners in .218 and the twist you want; http://www.trackofthewolf.com/pdfs/catalog/page_208.pdf

$5 per inch from them. Sorry, not sure about the gunsmith cost to get it put in and the breech figured out.
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Old August 17, 2014, 09:43 AM   #3
Join Date: March 7, 2005
Location: Florida
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I second the recommendation. I would consider and investigate relining first before replacing the barrel.
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Old August 17, 2014, 09:44 AM   #4
Join Date: February 11, 2007
Posts: 2,868
The 218 Bee and 32-20 are formed from the same case, so no breech or feeding modifications should be needed.

Redman makes liners for 25-20 and 32-20, so pressure should be OK, but I don't think they make a liner for 218 Bee.
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Old August 17, 2014, 11:49 AM   #5
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Location: Eastern KS
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The 25-20 and 32-20 are much lower pressure then the .218 Bee.

25-20 = 28,000 CUP
32-20 = 16,000 CUP
.218 Bee = 40,000 CUP.

I'd have to ponder quite a while before relining one.

I might suggest saving up for a Browning Model 65.
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Old August 17, 2014, 11:59 AM   #6
Jim Watson
Join Date: December 24, 2002
Posts: 18,184
Note that the OP is Down Under.
It might be simpler for him to have a New Daisy (Importer F. Lasseter's mark on Winchester 1892 rifles.) rebarrelled.
It's a slow boat to Washington for him.

It won't be cheap.
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Old August 17, 2014, 09:05 PM   #7
Join Date: February 11, 2007
Posts: 2,868
Originally Posted by rcmodel View Post
The 25-20 and 32-20 are much lower pressure then the .218 Bee.

25-20 = 28,000 CUP
32-20 = 16,000 CUP
.218 Bee = 40,000 CUP.
Good catch. Perhaps that's why Redman doesn't make a liner for them.
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