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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have a mannlicher schoenauer model 1950, in .270 cal. Half stock and a .23.5 inches barrel. The rifle used to be very accurate but suddenly lost accuracy. Since I saw no wearing off in the crown or rifling, I had it steel bedded, gave the barrel a thorough cleaning removing copper fouling, checked the sight and mounts, and then took it to the shooting range. But unfortunately there was no improvement on accuracy at all.

So I’m thinking about rebarreling it and would appreciate as many suggestions as possible about what barrel should I buy for it and specific details that I should take in consideration to have the job done correctly.

Someone told me that I could cut off half an inch of the barrel and recrown it, and maybe it could regain accuracy. I understand that these rifles have certain value in the market and that having it rebarreled will make it lose its original value. But to me it seems worthless having a rifle that I can’t use anymore.

Thanks,
 

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I have a mannlicher schoenauer model 1950, in .270 cal. Half stock and a .23.5 inches barrel. The rifle used to be very accurate but suddenly lost accuracy. Since I saw no wearing off in the crown or rifling, I had it steel bedded, gave the barrel a thorough cleaning removing copper fouling, checked the sight and mounts, and then took it to the shooting range. But unfortunately there was no improvement on accuracy at all.

So I’m thinking about rebarreling it and would appreciate as many suggestions as possible about what barrel should I buy for it and specific details that I should take in consideration to have the job done correctly.

Someone told me that I could cut off half an inch of the barrel and recrown it, and maybe it could regain accuracy. I understand that these rifles have certain value in the market and that having it rebarreled will make it lose its original value. But to me it seems worthless having a rifle that I can’t use anymore.

Thanks,
A sporting .270 probably doesn't fire a large number of shots, and it sounds like you very correctly thought the suddenness of the loss of accuracy cast doubt on whether it was the bore at fault. A well-done steel bedding job was exactly the right way to eliminate most of the other possibilities, but a few do remain.

First, the forend should make either gentle, firm, consistent pressure on the barrel, or none at all. If the pressure were irregular, especially under slin g tension, bedding the action alone, as some do, may have done nothing to change that. You could try sandwiching a piece of cardboard between the tip of the forend and the barrel. It will probably shift the group to somewhere you do not want it to be, but if that group becomes as small as you want, you have located the problem.

Look, also, for a chipped or cracked bolt lug, which is a very slim possibility, but also dangerous if overlooked.

If you come back to believing the bore is the problem, it might well be compounded by your choice of bullet. If it has a boat-tail or a peculiarly thickly jacketed base, such as the otherwise excellent Nosler solid base boat-tail, it can very easily perform badly in an eroded bore, when a thin, sheet-metal, flat-based bullet will restore good accuracy.

You hear very little about the relining of high-power rifle bores nowadays, but it can be done safely in a rifle like the Mannlicher-Schoenauer. There is a good article on it in "The NRA Gunsmithing Guide Updated", which is available on BookFinder.com: New & Used Books, Textbooks, Rare Books & Out-of-Print Books . This process won't preserve full collector value either, but it should be a lot more satisfying to you than rebarrelling.

I know of no source for rifled liner tubes in .270, but they are available in chrome-molybdenum steel from Track of the Wolf in .308 and .257 groove diameters. They can also be bought from their supplier, Mike Sayers of TJ's in Alexandria, KY. I slugged the bores of the pair I used for an Austro-Hungarian muzzle-loading double rifle, and they are very smooth and consistently dimensioned.

The article is a bit long in the tooth, and suggests the use of special grades of Loctite, used for fitting bearings, as much superior to the traditional soft solder. These still exist, under different designations, but are liable to set if there is any hesitation in sliding the liner home. I am sure there are now epoxies which are as good, and easier to use.
 

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John +1

The rifle does have collector value. If you can't get it shooting without "major changes" I'd consider selling it and buying a shooter.
 

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... but suddenly lost accuracy. ... had it steel bedded, gave the barrel a thorough cleaning removing copper fouling, ..,
What was the group size and shape before?
What was the group size and shape after losing accuracy?


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If the barrel was thoroughly cleaned, and all copper was removed, then you will need to shoot 4 or 5 or 6 rounds of ammo to foul the bore, before attempting to shoot a group.

If bedding didn't help, then either bedding was not an issue, or quality of the job may be suspect.

A chamber cast will tell you what the barrel looks like forward of the case. If the throat looks inconsistent you may be able to cut a longer throat and check the effect.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
What was the group size and shape before?
What was the group size and shape after losing accuracy?
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Very tight groups before losing accuracy. Then, about 4 inches between shots at 100 yards. Tendency didn't change after removing copper fouling. I have never shot it again.

Steel bedding was done all the way up to the forend of the stock and no sling tension was applied the last time I shot it. It was done by someone who is familiar with bedding procedures so I believe it was done correctly. However, after the negative result he told me that he'd like to check the bedding again.

Before losing accuracy, this rifle's action and barrel were directly attached to the stock with no other bedding materials and shot great for about 50 years. Had the stock’s shape changed with time, I would have experienced progressive variations in accuracy rather than a sudden loss of it, I suspect.

I have taken a photo of bullets introduced in the crown of a Ruger M77 with less than 100 shots and of the mannlicher schoenauer to compare how deep they sit. Both in .270. Unfortunately I am not able to attach them to this text as I can't index it to an URL. But comparing, the bullet introduced to the mannlicher's crown sits deeper than the ruger's. What do you think?
 

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Kinda strange if it went all at once. When I've had that happen it's usually been a scope or a mount. Even a loose front sight once, on a gun with iron sights.

Good luck and hope you figure it out.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you. I revised sight and mounts and as the rifle has a detachable side mount I was able to shoot it at 50 yards with iron sights. There was no improvement.
 

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That sort of rebedding means that the odds have shifted a lot in favour of the bore being responsible. But I still think lightly jacketed flat-based bullets, if not the type you are currently using, are worth trying. I think erosion immediately behind the muzzle would be even more likely than throat erosion to develop progressively over quite a while.

With the iron sights usually fitted to sporting rifles, it is hard to assess whether 2in. at fifty yards is really equivalent to 4in. at 100. One other non-destructive thing to try would be removing the side mount, greasing the receiver, and bedding it back firmly on something like car body repair filler. That would eliminate the possibility of movement there, and if it cures the accuracy, and it would be an opportunity to try another scope, or that scope on another rifle.

The shape and consistency of the group is worth examining too. If the group is entirely random, it is most likely the bullet, the bore, or the relationship between them. If the rifle strings the shots in one direction, or the group worsens (or even improves) as the rifle heats up, it is probably bedding.

One other possibility with a side mount, if it has been removed and replaced recently. Could one of its mounting screws be touching the bolt?
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
I have been shooting the rifle with Remington core lokt, Winchester’s power points and ballistic silver tips. Due to the country where I am located, I am restricted to a few different cartridge brands and reloading is not a feasible option here.

Last time I removed the stock from the action for bedding, I checked the side mount and found no screws. Apparently the base seems to be welded to action and looks as if it was a single piece. I don’t know if I haven’t checked it well but didn't find any screws. This is a griffin & Howe side mount, which according to specifications should have been screwed to the action. The side mount hasn't been touched since it was fitted to the rifle.

I did also try shooting it with a new scope. Same results, which eliminates the chance of losing accuracy due to a wrecked telescope.

To me it doesn't look as if the throat has become inconsistent. But I can see that groves just next to the throat have become darker for about ½ inch. It looks as carbon fouling.
 
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