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Discussion Starter #1
I' have a lever gun, specifically a Winchester '94. When working the lever from my shoulder, it is impossible to do so without completely removing the rifle from my shoulder.

Obviously, my arms are too short for the stock. My shirt sleeve length is 29" if that's any indication.

Shouldn't I be able to work the lever from the shoulder sighted position? How long should the stock be for proper fit?
 

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Hi Two-Bits,
Yes, you should be able to work the lever from the shoulder sighted position. A real rough rule of thumb for determining length of pull is to bend your elbow 90 degrees and measure from the elbow to the first joint on your index finger. I'm not sure what the 94's are, but most rifles are somewhere around 13 1/4" - 13 1/2". I think the 94's might be a little shorter. BC Stocker probably has a better measurement system, you might want to send a PM to him.

Using this measurement for myself, I come up with 13 1/4" and rifles with that measure fit me fine.
 

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Two-bits,
The length of pull on a 94 is pretty short. My sleeve length is 31 according to a dress shirt in my closet and my draw length for a bow is 28", and I can reach a full 6 inches past the open lever of my model 94 when I have the rifle shouldered. I believe that maybe a different technique might be the answer? It's hard to diagnose over the internet, but I'm wondering if maybe you hold the butt of the rifle farther outboard on your shoulder than I. In any case I don't think I would shorten the stock too much, since the bolt comes within 1.5" of my face in it's rearward position. Just some food for thought, I don't really have the answer to your problem. ID
 

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Two-bits,
In that case you probably could benefit from having the stock shortened some. Just be careful that the bolt won't hit you in the face! That will depend a great deal on how you are built and how you hold the rifle, so it might be a good idea to consult a good gunsmith for the project.
BTW, I just measured my length of pull with that method and I got 13.25. Good luck getting that rifle to fit.
Interesting note - I had my Model 70 stock shortened to 13 inches a couple of years ago and I like it much better. ID
 

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Probably more important than getting the second shot, you will come up better on the sights with an LOP that matches you and have a quicker mount. It's better to have too short an LOP on a gun than too long.
 

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I had the L.O.P. changed on my J.C. Higgins to 13 1/4. It's the 1st gun that has ever fit me right. I will eventually do this to all of the rifles I shoot. I think a proper Length of Pull is the most important modification you can make. Remember also, it may fit with "street clothes", but does it fit with your wool shirt and wool coat. That's what caused me to change the L.O.P. to 13 1/4. It was perfect this year when I shot a buck as he jumped up out of his bed and was kicking it in to high gear. I shot him mid stride. Best shot I've ever made on big game, all because the gun "fit right". I've missed those shots before, because the gun wasn't where it needed to be.
 

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Hi, Two-Bits:
While I've never bought a gun that was too long for me, I did over-extend one with a recoil pad and spacer. It was the same length as one that fits me, which goes to prove that some of the other stock dimensions affect what the length of pull should be. Dad's old Remington 10 was too short for me and every kid knows that you gotta use magnums. So I bashed my lip with my thumb several times before I smartened up.

When you start cutting, remember my old blacksmith's saying. "Cut it off twice and it was still too short." :D

Bye
Jack
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for all the input. I'm not going to shorten up the stock of my '94. I was just lookin' for an answer to my question. I have lots of ??

I saw a Winchester '94 at the gun show last week that was manufactured around a year (1955) before mine (approx. 1956). It looked like the blueing was well worn, though no scratches on it. The stock was in good shape too. They wanted $785 for it. The blueing on mine is pristine, but the receiver has 1 small scratch and there is a small chip in the stock. I think mine is better looking and I don't want to change it.

Maybe if I buy a new lever gun, I'll shorten it up for myself. I'm thinking about a Navy Arms Winchester '92 reproduction or a Marlin '94. 'Course 20 minutes from now, I'll change my mind.:)
 

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Two-Bits,
Sometimes you can pick up used stockes at gunshows and used parts places. Why not pick up one, then use it as your test subject and keep your nice wood unchanged? Just a thought.
 

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J. Miller has the right idea. M-94 butt stocks are pretty common at gun shows. Pick up a rough one and fill it with wood putty, then paint or stain it. I have seen this done and they come out looking pretty good.
While you are at it take a serious look at the pitch of the buttplate. A 3/4" wedge under the buttplate, the thick part at the toe, not only reduces felt recoil but makes a rifle's taller aftermarket sights (if equipped with reciever sights or scope) come more naturally to the eye.
While not much of an issue with .30-30's, the .444 and .45-70 can rough you up on the bench. The wedges are easy to install and remove. You can make them from balsa or buy them from Brownells. When I was a skinney skid I sure wish my Dad had known about them!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
That's a good idea about picking up an old rifle stock at a gun show. I did see some at the show that I went to. Next time a show comes to town, I'll pick one up.
 

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Hi
I had the same problem--29"arms.Great for arm wrestling not so good for working stock lever actions.Then again I have small hands and a pot belly(I'm ugly too and thats my best feature).
I bought a Marlin 444P and sawed off the buttstock to get the proper length of pull.If you are interested in the length I came up with let me know and I'll measure it.The forearm was to thick for my hand so I slimmed that up too.
I bought an extra stock set as insurance because my cross eyes and confused brain has me measuring once and cutting at least twice.
I got lots of help here and on the Marlin big bore form for custom forming my rifle.At this time in my life I'm more interested in my rifle fitting me then the other way around.
As another who is reach challenged I want to let you know that you are not alone and that there is hope --for a follow up shot.
Jeff
 
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