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by John S Date Added: Monday 12 September, 2011
Long story short - I love this rifle. Have not had a chance to shoot it yet, but I'm sure it will be great.

Fourth order from Bud's and again, their service was 5-star. The order was placed late Tuesday evening and picked it up at my FFL about 10am Friday Morning.

The description of the lot's condition is not misleading; I'm going to go with Joseph W and give the rifle itself it 4 stars overall as a restoration project.

Regarding the metal: it was in good shape for a piece that was probably manufactured circa 1969 and was definitely used; Wear and tear wise there was only a very slight deformity of the leading edge of the front sight guard to complain about. No big deal. The bluing was in relatively good shape with only some reasonable wear on high contact edges: rear edge of the receiver cover, front sight guard, front sling attachment, bottom edges of the magazine cover. All of this was easily fixed with a little Perma-Blu. The firing pin was not frozen, but even after breaking down the bolt and thoroughly cleaning it, it still stuck more than not, so I replaced it with a new Murray's spring-loaded pin.

The stock was another matter. It will always remind me of a Rodney Dangerfield routine: "I tell ya, I'm alright now, but last week I was in rough shape, ya know..."
Of course the cosmoline to remove, but lots of dents, cuts, dings and two deep circular gouges, one on either side of the bayonet slot that looked like someone had tried to hammer a .45 casing into the wood with a spray of big splinters sticking up around the circumference of each...some of which are still working their way out of my palm heel.

To fix those two gouges, there was no half-way available so I got to study up a bit and do my first total refinishing. Cleaning, sanding, two coats of Minwax Sedona Red, and six coats of Tru-Oil later, it still has plenty of "character", but its looks beautiful and I'm really happy with it and got a lot of personal satisfaction from the process. I definitely feel more of a personal connection with this piece than any other I own.

Rating: 4 of 5 Stars! [4 of 5 Stars!]
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