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Remington 550-1

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Reloadron, Jul 9, 2015.

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  1. Reloadron
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    Reloadron Contributing Member

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    My neighbor brought me a Remington 550-1 literally in a bag with barrel and stock poking out. While over the years I have seen a few I never saw one up close and personal. Seems a friend of his loaned the rifle to his son and to say this rifle was abused would be an understatement. Plenty of light to heavy rust on barrel, receiver and magazine tube. Unique about the rifle is they used a "floating" chamber allowing a semi-automatic to shoot 22 Short, 22 Long and 22 Long Rifle.

    I soaked the parts (metal) overnight in mineral spirits and washed the stock which was literally black with dirt. I scrubbed the stock with TSP and it actually cleaned up, heck you could see wood grain. Treated the wood with liquid gold and to even my surprise it looked good. The rear sight elevator was a nail which was ground down (creative) so I replaced it with an elevator I had in my junk box, seemed a good fit.

    Looking online I began to assemble this rifle painstakingly and finally got things all cleaned and together. These are really nice rifles. My guess was around maybe 1947 since it was a dash one. The 550 used a dual extractor but the 550-1 went to a single extractor. Took me several tries and some frustration but I finally had what I thought to be a working rifle.

    Told my wife to expect some popping sounds and went to the basement with a box of 22 LR, the rifle and a smile. The best I can manage is 35 feet but my concern was functionality. Damn, that little rifle shot great! The barrel outside still shows signs of the rust and abuse but the 550-1 was a great little shooter delivering tight little groups. Oh yeah, I also replaced the butt plate which was broken and held with an extra screw drilled into the stock. I had a "close enough" fitting butt plate. If the owner wants closer on a free job he can sand the thing.

    I decided next 550 I see, in real nice condition, I will buy. :) Really sweet little 22 rifle and I have a stash of old 22 rifles to include a 510, 511 and 512 Remingtons. I feel the need (OK, nice to have) of a Remington 550. Granted 35 feet is nothing to write about but such a tight set of 5 shot groups with off the shelf American Eagle 22 LR was impressive.

    Anyone else out there enjoying a Remington 550?

    Ron
     
  2. Leanwolf

    Leanwolf Member

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    You bet! In 1950 when I was 13, my father gave me a Remington 550-1A for my birthday and a case of Remington .22 LR cartridges. He'd started my older brother and me shooting when we were six years old but that was my first .22 LR rifle.

    The "1A" came with a 4x Weaver .22 'scope, and was drilled at the factory for that 'scope.

    I have shot thousands of cartridges through it over the years and still use it on ground squirrels here in the Spring. It often accompanies me in my pickup when I go to the mountains or shooting range. It is a fine rifle and works perfectly even today, no matter it is "old." ;)

    Enjoy your rifle. It'll last a long time now that you have brought it back to life.

    L.W.
     
  3. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    I vaguely recall that I got a 550 sometime around 1949 or thereabouts. Loved it. It was stolen after I went into the Army in 1954. For all that I've had other quality .22s, I still have a soft spot in me for those rifles.
     
  4. dbmjr1

    dbmjr1 Member

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    I've helped my neighbors, across the street, on many of their home projects. On larger projects, Sandras, the father of Susan, would help.

    Upon his passing Susan gave me his .22 rifle. You can see where the bug juice ate the finish where he carried it. His idea of cleaning it was to spray in some more WD40.

    I cleaned it, inside and out. That's all.

    It's in fine shape, just the way it is.
    IMG_20150411_182840950_zps7pvgco36.jpg
     
  5. Reloadron
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    Reloadron Contributing Member

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    Good sized show this weekend here in NE Ohio, the Berea Cuyahoga County Gun Show, I may get lucky. Once I finally had the thing together and cleaned up I just saw it as a nice to have and I have to find me one. Damn, I love old 22s. :) Nice pictures guys and thanks for posting.

    Ron
     
  6. Tommygunn

    Tommygunn Member

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    One of the rifles I inherited from my father was a Remington 550-1. It's a nice, simply made rifle. I'm told they were inexpensive rifles but had good reputations for reliability & accuracy.
    Mine is in almost new condition with only a small area of wood chipped around the toe of the stock.
     
  7. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

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    My experience wasn't as good.
    I had a real nice used one as my first .22 semi-auto in the 60's.

    It was a Jam-O-Matic.

    I took the shell deflector off and tossed it.
    Because I had to have open access to the ejection port to dig bent cartridges out of it with my pocket knife.

    I replaced everything I could get from a Remington of the guts.
    Still jammed every other shot.

    On top of that, no amount of care could keep it from rusting red over-night after cleaning it.

    I took a beating and traded it for a new Model 77 Winchester and never looked at another Remington.

    rc
     
  8. Bull Nutria

    Bull Nutria Member

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    Rem 550s are either very good or jam-o- matics. I have one that was bought new in 1965 and it is reliable, however i clean it after about 3-400 rds, I have a commercial trapper friend who has several 550s . He has lots of problems with them but has learned to clean them and keeps them running.

    I suggest that the shell deflector be removed because it is very difficult to dig out a jamb with it on. as with most autos you will get an occasional jam. My 550 is reasonably accurate but not nearly as accurate as my Browning SA-22!

    Good news is brownells and perhaps Numrich handles parts for these obsolete 550s, i replaced the action spring and a few other parts in mine. this seemed to help it run much better.

    there are some parts that you are not supposed to remove from the internals
    Check out Rimfire Central forum for more info about disassembly of 550s. there are a few 550 collectors and experts on that forum that are very good at assisting with the REM 550.

    Good luck,
    Bull
     
  9. Dave Markowitz

    Dave Markowitz Member

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    I have a Remington 550-1 that I snagged for $175 a couple years ago. It has become my favorite .22 autoloader. The date code on the barrel indicates that it was made in March 1948. Here it is along with my Remington Apache Nylon 77:

    Remington_22s.jpg

    Here's a list of Remington date codes.

    I replaced the front sight with a Williams red fiber optic sight, and bought a shell deflector from Numrich to replace the original which was MIA. The shell deflector is a necessity on the 550s if you're a lefty like me, primarily for the gas and unburnt powder grains.

    Mine will cycle even with CCI .22 CB Shorts (mostly). It's very reliable with CCI Mini Mags and Remington Golden Bullets. Federal Automatch gives me the occasional stovepipe.

    Note that the earlier Model 550 can be more troublesome. It has two extractors unlike the 550-1, which has only one. If the extractors are installed wrong it can cause all sorts of grief.
     
  10. Reloadron
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    Reloadron Contributing Member

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    Well, went to my local gun shop and Jim always has a wide selection of 22 rifles laying around. Found a real nice one, excellent bluing and very clean all around but the stock looked like birch, sort of like a cheap Ruger 10/22 stock. Also found one in a fair condition with a really pretty walnut stock. There were a few more but one had a cracked stock and the other was pretty beat up. I asked the owner about the nice blue but crap Ruger looking stock, out the door and we got to talking. He said tell you what, Give me $175 for both you like. Done! I'll clean up the nice blue and clean the pretty walnut. Swap stocks and the lesser goes to the Berea gun show this weekend and I should get an easy $100 for it. Works for me. Both will be cleaned and pretty but the lesser is simply worn bluing, sort of that patina look. May even give it to my grandson (the older one). Haven't dated them yet but the newer one actually has a serial number, the older doesn't.

    Ron
     
  11. tark

    tark Member

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    I have a 550-1. Eats everything I feed it, including the low velocity long rifles, which aren't much more than a CB cap! It dribbles the empties out the side of the gun but it works, every time.
     
  12. Dave Markowitz

    Dave Markowitz Member

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    Go see what Remington 550-1s are selling for on Gunbroker. You should get quite a bit more than $100. When I paid $175 OTD for mine in May 2013 I figured that I stole it.
     
  13. Reloadron
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    Reloadron Contributing Member

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    :)

    Yeah, surprise me. Spent yesterday tearing down both rifles, scrubbed and cleaned. Actually the older rifle actually came out looking pretty good even lacking the blue it sort of has a patina look. Both fired flawless out of a mixed bag of 22 LR I had. Likely tomorrow I'll take it to the show and ask $150. Looking at prices I won't go under $100 or maybe $125. Not like I need to sell it anyway.

    Had a good time working on them, dragged my stuff out on the deck and just worked on them for hours relaxing and enjoying hard apple ciders. Supposed to rain tomorrow, yet again. :(

    Ron
     
  14. shiftyer1

    shiftyer1 Member

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    I grew up shooting thousands of rounds thru one, it's what spoiled me about 22's. I NEVER had 1 jam ever. Then I got older and bought different rifles and started learning about jams. lol
     
  15. Joe_N

    Joe_N Member

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    My father bought a 550-1 for my older brother in about 1952-1955 and I began shooting it around 1957. The rifle was really accurate and never failed even though we only shot 22 shorts in it because they were so cheap. I don't think the gun was ever cleaned and the last time I shot it, probably in the 80s, it did jam about every other shot. I just pulled it out of the closet and have decided to clean it up and try to get it working again. It is still in pretty good shape but is showing some wear after years of neglect but thankfully there is no rust.

    I have tried to find some way to date the gun to find the year of manufacture but the link posted by Dave Markowitz doesn't work for me. I can't find any serial number on the gun. The only numbers I have found on the left side of the barrel are 77 with a space and 3 small hash marks, almost like apostrophes. Can anyone help me with determining the date on this rifle?
     
  16. Reloadron
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    Reloadron Contributing Member

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    Have you tried using the Remington Dates of Manufacture codes? The newer rifle of the two I have does have a serial number which tells me it was post 1968 when serial numbers were required. The older gun is also a 550-1 and the -1 I believe began around 1947. The barrel date codes on my older gun are A C 9 leading me to believe March of 1956.

    Dragged it through the show today, quiet Sunday at the show. Noticed as the day went on the rifle gained weight. Wonder how they do that? On the bright side the target guy was there and I needed targets so that went well. :)

    Ron
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2015
  17. ColtPythonElite

    ColtPythonElite Member

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    We have one at our farm my grandfather bought new. It has been used and abused by 4 generations. It has never been properly cleaned. It still feeds great, though.

    A few years ago, I found a mint one at a gunshow. I gave $215 for it. My brother saw it and wanted one. He went to another show and found one nearly as nice for $150.
     
  18. Mousegun

    Mousegun Member

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    AMAZING !!! My friend asked if I could give his old timer a good cleaning. He brought it to me and low and behold it was a 550-1.

    I took it completely down and cleaned up a long needed mess. This all took place just 3 days ago. Until then, I didn't know a 550-1 from a 39A.
     
  19. Joe_N

    Joe_N Member

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    Reloadron, I have tried that link but apparently my rifle has no serial number. Like I stated it has the number 77 and a stamp to the right of the number and slightly higher than the number that looks like an oval stamp of 3 small vertical lines. I know that's hard to envision but I do have a picture I can post if I can figure out how to do it. I am on my phone now but will be back at my computer tonight.
     
  20. Reloadron
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    Reloadron Contributing Member

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    Bummer, strange no lettering codes. Would be nice to figure out when this puppy was born. :)

    Ron
     
  21. Joe_N

    Joe_N Member

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    Does anyone know where I could download an owners manual for the 550-1? Also I would like to have a diagram/schematic of the gun.

    EDIT: I had looked on the Remington site and couldn't find anything about the 550-1 but decided to look one more time after I posted the above and I did find a manual for the 550.
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2015
  22. Dave Markowitz

    Dave Markowitz Member

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    Since the gun is long out of production, you might also want to get a copy of the Field Service Manual. I looked around on the 'net but could not find it in PDF format. However, I did find a facsimile available on eBay. (This is not my auction!)

    I bought a copy of the FSM from the linked vendor and it's a good quality photocopy.
     
  23. Reloadron
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    Reloadron Contributing Member

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    Thanks Dave for that addition.

    Ron
     
  24. kBob

    kBob Member

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    The old Gun Digest Book of Firearms Disassembly Part III: Rimfire Rifles Revised Edition by J.B. Wood has a set of basic takedown instruction s for the 550 but not specifically the 550-1.

    I always wondered why he did not include a schematic for each rifle in that.

    -kBob
     
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