were not fool proof, in that the bolt could be assembled with the lugs in the wrong position so that they were not locked when the bolt was closed. Some faces and other things were blown off, as a result, I understand—since which time certain parties have been carping on the general undesirability of ail Ross rifles, alleging that they were more cangcrous to the man behind than to him in Iront.
I have no argument with those who believe the Ross Model 5 to be unsafe. I don't know whether it is safe or unsafe. I never saw it used in action, and have no firsthand record of any Model 5 bolt blowing out and killing or injuring anyone. The sum total of my experience with the Model 5 covers about a dozen rifles, five of which I have owned and shot, and three of which I still have. 1*he others I shot also, and witnessed their shooting by their owners. In no instance have I seen one of, the bolts blow out, nor have I known of one blowing out, nor have I observed any signs of one threatening to blow out. The nearest thing to an accident with a Model 5 Ross I ever saw was a bolt which partly opened after having been shot all day. Investigation disclosed that the shooter had beeo dipping his bullets into vaseline to prevent metal fouling; and when I examined the bolt and chamber I found everything thickly coated with grease, so that the back thrust of the cartridge against the bolt head must have been at least 50% greater than normal. A Springfield, ot even a Mauser (which some of our alleged experts claim is so much stronger) would be expected to let loose under such circumstances. In fact, the blowing up of several Springfields was traced to the use of Mobilubricant some years ago, and the practice discontinued for this reason. When the shooter above mentioned cleaned out the grease from chamber and action of his Ross, the bolt stayed "put" and no trouble has been noticed through hundreds of rounds fired afterward.
The .303 British Cartridge is almost identical in ballistics with the .30-40, which means, that with suitable hunting bullets it is a fine load for all American big game. The ammunition is made by all cartridge companies in this country. Moreover, the action of the Ross Model 5 will handle the .30-40 cartridge perfectly, so it is an easy matter to have a Krag barrel fitted, or a Springfield barrel rechambered for the .30-40 cartridge. It is highly important that the work be done by a competent barrel maker, and headspace adjusted to .004" or less.
The same suggestions applying to other military rifles apply to the Ross when it comes to remodeling it into a Sporter. The barrel is 28 inches long, and may be cut to 22 inches without greatly affecting accuracy. In this length it makes a handy saddle gun. The Springfield fixed stud is too large for the Ross barrel, so it is necessary to make one from Shelby tubing, or to ream the original sight base a trifle and use it. Or, make a ramp of the correct size to fit the shortened barrel.
The military stock is rather better than most in shape and size, and may be dressed down to a fairly good sporting stock with a little work, and checked and polished as desired. Next to the German Mauser, the Ross is perhaps the best shaped of all military stocks.
The forend can be cut off a ¡couple of inches ahead of swivel band, or carried out to the muzzle as desired. The upper band can be altered into a muzzle cap by cutting it in half as already explained in connection with the Krag. To remove the Ross upper band intact it is necessary first to remove the front sight base. This is soldered to the barrel and may be removed by heating until the solder melts.
If you want to get rid of this upper band entirely without removing sight base or cutting off barrel, the band must be filed in two—and be sure to work carefully and use a fine sharp edged fil
I have before me a Ross with a perfect barrel that has been almost ruined by sheer stupidity and clumsiness—evidently a horse rasp was used to file off the band, and there are ridges nearly 1/16 inch deep filed across the barrel 1
The military rear sight of the Ross is rather better than most mili-
tary sights; so if you like open sights you'll not be far wrong in leaving ic on. Lyman makes a receiver sight for the Ross for eleven dollars. Figure 193 shows the military rear sight which the ingenious owner has moved back and sweated to the top of the bolt, giving the advantage of a receiver sight at no cost but a little work. It was necessary to file the under side of base to a larger radius, which the owner did by holding the sight in his hand and working on it with a half round file from the ten cent store 1 And it is as perfect a job of fitting as I ever saw.
If one cares enough for his Ross to make a special stock for it he will find it well worth the time and labor. Moreover, the Ross is one of the easiest of all the bolt actions to stock. The barrel and receiver are let in first; then the guard screw holes are bored; then remove the magazine from guard, and use the guard as a templet to outline its location on under side of stock. Inlet guard, then
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