Sights

Whether you want open sights or a scope sight on the CHICOPEE R.F. rifle you make, or you want both types of sights, we highly recommcnd that you use the blank tip-off scope base that Brownell sells. A five inch section of this base fitted and attached to the top of the receiver ring and barrel with two or three screws is ideal for a scope mounting, placing the scope the right height above the hammer so that the rifle can be readily cocked. If you want open sights in addition then we recommend the use of the Williams Guide rear sight and a front sight mounted on a Williams Shorty ramp base. Another choice of sights is to use an eight inch section of the blank tip-off base and dovetail it to accept the Marbles windage and elevation adjustable No. 16 folding leaf open sight along with a front sight mounted on the Williams Shorty ramp.

NOTE: Use 11/64" diameter drill rod to make the firing pins for both the Chicopee R.F. and C.F. actions. Turn the tip so it is a snug but bind free fit into the 5/64" hole drilled for it in the breech block face plate. A round needle file can be used to give this hole a slight taper from rear to front. Turn the rear end of the firing pin to 9/64" diameter. Use a light tension spring, but one long and strong enough to positively retract the firing pin. Polish the firing pin, and if need be, the firing pin hole so that the firing pin is bind free.

Free Plans Rifle Kit Black Powder

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The F.D.H. CHICOPEE C.F. action is of sandwich construction of four layers of steel; two for the breech block and two for the receiver, matched and joined together with screws, welding or silver brazing. It is a swinging block action with the breech block hinged on a pin or screw at its front end, supported solidly at the rear by heavy action-depth shoulders and locked securely closed by a locking lever at the rear. It is an ideal action for cartridges such as the .22 Hornet, .218 Bee, .25-20 and .256 Magnum. It is also very suitable for the .22 Long Rifle and .22 WMR Magnum cartridges.

Chapter 5

HOW TO MAKE The F.D.H. CHICOPEE C.F. Action and Rifle

Have you ever wished for a non-bolt action single-shot rifle chambered for the .25-20 WCF cartridge? Have you ever wished to make a rifle for this cartridge or for another cartridge similar to it, say the .22 Hornet, .218 Bee, .25 Hornet or .256 Magnum but did't know how to go about it? Of course it has to be a rifle with an action (Fig. 5-A) of fairly simple design so that you could make it in your own home workshop. And have you wondered if anyone had ever made working plans for such an action and rifle? If so, you need look no farther for here they are in this chapter.

If you have some mechanical ability and some knowledge about firearms, and it you have in your shop a drill press and a metal turning lathe, plus some files, drills and hacksaw and if you can read simple drawings and instructions, you should be able to make a rifle like the one shown here (Fig. 5-B).

In Chapter 1 we have already described something about the CHICOPEE centerfire action. To begin with, this action is a swinging block action, meaning that its breech block swings downward on a hinge pin when it is opened (Fig. 5-C). Except for the receiver ring, this action is of sandwich con struction; that is, both the receiver and breech block are made of layers of flat stock steel material available everywhere. The firing mechanism is a simple one and it is built between the breech block layers. Its manually cocked hammer is a rebound one that is always in the SAFE position unless the trigger is pulled. It has a fully adjustable trigger and depending on how well you make the trigger and hammer the trigger pull will be short and crisp. It has a positive extractor suitable for both rimmed and rimless cartridges. A very simple but very strong locking mechanism securely holds the breech block closed and locked. Inside the breech block and positioned between the locking lever and the hammer there is a safety device which prevents the rifle from being fired unless the locking lever is fully engaged and another feature prevents the action from being opened when the hammer is cocked. A through-bolt secures the buttstock to the receiver. Last but not least is the method used to support the breech block in the receiver to hold it snug against the breech end of the barrel against the thrust of firing.

An outstanding feature of this action is the way the breech

Hornet Anschutz Exploded View

This is an example of a rifle style which can be built on the F.D.H. CHICOPEE C.F. action. It is a varmint rifle in .218 Bee caliber weighing about 8.25 pounds with scope and 24" medium weight barrel. The stock and forearm are made of fancy burl walnut and shaped sporter style with minimum wood. The scope on this rifle is an obsolete 7X Fecker Woodchucker but almost any modern hunting scope could also be used in appropriate mounts.

This is an example of a rifle style which can be built on the F.D.H. CHICOPEE C.F. action. It is a varmint rifle in .218 Bee caliber weighing about 8.25 pounds with scope and 24" medium weight barrel. The stock and forearm are made of fancy burl walnut and shaped sporter style with minimum wood. The scope on this rifle is an obsolete 7X Fecker Woodchucker but almost any modern hunting scope could also be used in appropriate mounts.

Chicopee Build Gun

The F.D.H. CHICOPEE C.F. action open with a fired cartridge case partially extracted from the chamber. To open this action the locking lever at the top rear of the receiver is pulled back which allows the breech block to swing downward of its own weight, and which also activates the extractor at the same time. The extractor is spring loaded and readily adapts to either rimmed or rimless cartridges. A groove in the top surface of the breech block serves as a loading ramp or guide. To close the action the breech block is swung upward by finger pressure on the trigger guard allowing the locking lever to snap forward into locking position. However, if for any reason the locking lever does not fully engage under the locking bolt in the receiver, the hammer cannot be cocked. This is a safety device which prevents the rifle from being fired unless the locking lever is fully engaged, and when this happens slight pressure against the rear of the locking lever will fully lock the action so it can be fired. When making this action this safety device should not be omitted. Also note the radial surface on the rear of the breech block, a surface which has full length contact with matching concave surfaces on locking shoulders (see arrow) so that all the rearward thrust on the breech block when firing the rifle is taken up by these twin shoulders and not by the hinge pin.

block is supported at the rear. The rear walls of the breech block are concave at a radius with the hinge pin and are mated with two support shoulders (see arrow Fig. 5-C) made the full depth of the receiver with both shoulders secured to the inside of the receiver walls by pins and silver brazing or welding. If the concave and convex surfaces are properly matched and the shoulders properly attached then there is little chance of wear or breech block set-back ever occuring. The breech block is so solidly supported at the rear that the hinge pin serves only as a hinge pin.

There are other things you may like about this action and rifle. One thing is that it looks like a single-shot with its two-piece stock (Fig. 5-D). Even though it is larger and stronger than it need be for the .22 rimfire cartridges, it can nevertheless be used for them to make up a fine small game sporter or an accurate target rifle. The action can easily be made heavier. For example, the breech block and receiver can be made with thicker walls and the receiver ring made larger to accept a larger barrel shank, and if this were done the action could be used to build a Schuetzen target rifle in .32-40 or .38-55 calibers. The trigger guard can be shaped differently than we show it. We know of two shooters who have made rifles on the action identical to our plans with one being chambered for the .222 and the other the .223. Both rifles have been fired many times without a sign of trouble. Just the same, it is our recommendation that this action be only used with less powerful cartridges than these. For these and other more powerful centerfire cartridges we recommend either our No. 1 or No. 2 VAULT LOCK actions as described in Chapters 1, 2 and 3.

Chicopee Rifle Plans

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Although the F.D.H. CHICOPEE C.F. action is somewhat long it is never-the-less trim and it can be stocked that way as this one is. Note the well curved pistol grip and the forearm which extends rearward under the front part of the receiver.

CAPTIONS for drawings and photos with some preliminary instructions for making the F.D.H. CHICOPEE C.F. action. NOTE: All the drawings except Fig. 5-1 are made actual size and any dimensions not given can be taken from the drawings.

Blaser Breech

Fig. 5-1 EXPLODED VIEW

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Responses

  • Wesley Garth
    How to engage safety on anschutz 22 hornet rifle?
    8 years ago
  • Martin
    How to activate safety mechanism on anschutz 22 hornet?
    8 years ago
  • dirk
    How to make simple open sights?
    8 years ago
  • robel
    How to make bent polish receiver blanks?
    7 years ago

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