Push feed to CRF?

John J

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In my haste to pick up a New Haven Model 70 for the action size (gunbroker) I didn't notice it was a push feed. Can the bolt be replaced or the action made to accept a CRF bolt safely? I'm not sure how bad I messed up here? I am wanting the CRF for a build. John
 

CoElkHunter

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Yeah, the Winchesters are tricky that way. I’ve looked at them on Cabelas Gun Library and Gun Broker, and you have to see a top photo of the bolt to see the “claw” extractor to make sure it’s a CRF? Often times the model year and/or serial numbers aren’t displayed in the description of the rifle. I almost did the same thing as you awhile back.
 

BnC 04

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Your only option at this point is to use it or sell.
Being a online buyer as well, if the proper pictures are not posted by the seller I will ask for one of the area in question. If no response, I move on regardless of how good a deal it may be.
 

John J

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Yes, the seller was good communicating and sending more pictures but I never noticed the rifle was not CRF. Something I would have noticed in a gun shop. Live and learn, first online rifle purchase. I'll see if someone at work is interested in a good deal. Thanks everyone.
 

BnC 04

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Yes, the seller was good communicating and sending more pictures but I never noticed the rifle was not CRF. Something I would have noticed in a gun shop. Live and learn, first online rifle purchase. I'll see if someone at work is interested in a good deal. Thanks everyone.
Send me a PM on the rifle details. I'm not a push feed guy but any/all New Haven Winchesters have a spot in my home.
 

Standard Velocity

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Of course if your heart is set on CRF (especially for a build) a push feed will not satisfy, but, if I’m not mistaken there were a couple of different extractor styles. Winchester advertised one as some sort of hybrid CRF (which it was not) that had a robust extractor.

I accidentally bought a push feed FN Browning that I assumed was CRF. They changed only their 375 and 458’s to push feed in the early 70’s but kept CRF for 30-06 sized cartridges.

I was disappointed at first but it shot really well. The extractor is very substantial and ejection is reliable. Plus I can single feed directly into the chamber. My preference would be for a blade ejector but I’ve never had a plunger malfunction. If I can put together the funds to go, this will accompany me to Africa.
 

John J

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I never had a push feed issue myself. But if I'm gona build one I'll get an action that is controlled.
 

Ridgewalker

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Is this a DG cartridge? If not I certainly wouldn’t be concerned. If it is, I would try it out as if I were hunting with it. If it works, so what if it’s not CRF. You always have a PH to back you. In the future if you’re not comfortable, sell it or have it rebarreled for a PG rifle. JMO
Many people do just fine on DG with push feed.
 

Ray B

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Back when Winchester only made PushFeed M70s there was some interest in making a CRF.
According to the article I read, Winchester converted a pushfeed to a CRF, but it didn't say how much was converted in order to make the change. When Winchester did re-introduce a proper M70 they used completely different machinery than they were using for the PF models. My guess is that you could probably have it converted to CRF but it would cost about the price of two or three CRF rifles.
 

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Personally, I would never hunt DG with a push feed rifle.. It may work fine for a time, BUT when it fails you don't want to be facing a charging beast, regardless of PH back up, with a round stuck!!! It will only take one fail and you could be in for a hiding to nowhere.
 

John J

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I'm going to sell the rifle at an attractive price and pick a a CRF. It will be for a 458 B&M build so it will be for DG. Every 14 year old kid needs a big bore, going to build one for my son and myself when funds allow.
 

TOBY458

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I
I'm going to sell the rifle at an attractive price and pick a a CRF. It will be for a 458 B&M build so it will be for DG. Every 14 year old kid needs a big bore, going to build one for my son and myself when funds allow.
I assume since you're doing B&M, the action was originally for a WSM cartridge? If that's the case, you probably have the hybrid action. Meaning the bottom of the bolt face was milled out to let the cartridge rim ride up underneath the extractor when pushing the bolt forward. Also, these actions had a blade ejector, just like the CRF actions This works very well in my experience. Sako has adopted this same system. However the Winchester has the ejector in the correct position, unlike the Sako.
 

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The only action I have ever had fail in Africa was a custom .375 built on a FN CRF action. This one had the Browning style lever bolt release. It worked fine at home - but Namibia’s fine dust was another issue. Prior to heading into the Caprivi a shot at a PG animal left me with the bolt in my right hand on reload. A bit of sand blocked the bolt stop. Could have been embarrassing on an inbound buff. A thorough cleaning later, it worked fine on the buffalo, but did it again on return to the dust for the last few days of the hunt.

I have been hunting with an R8 for the last few years - to include a couple of buffalo. It is a push feed and is utterly reliable.

It would be silly to condemn all CRF actions because of the failure of one. But it is equally silly to do the same with push feed designs.
 

Standard Velocity

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The only action I have ever had fail in Africa was a custom .375 built on a FN CRF action. This one had the Browning style lever bolt release. It worked fine at home - but Namibia’s fine dust was another issue. Prior to heading into the Caprivi a shot at a PG animal left me with the bolt in my right hand on reload. A bit of sand blocked the bolt stop. Could have been embarrassing on an inbound buff. A thorough cleaning later, it worked fine on the buffalo, but did it again on return to the dust for the last few days of the hunt.

I have been hunting with an R8 for the last few years - to include a couple of buffalo. It is a push feed and is utterly reliable.

It would be silly to condemn all CRF actions because of the failure of one. But it is equally silly to do the same with push feed designs.


I happen to have three FN’s of this style. The bolt release always looked less robust than the ones on actual Mausers. How difficult do you think it would be to install a true Mauser bolt release?

I’ve never removed the bolt release from a Mauser but it looks like the body of the release is welded or otherwise permanently affixed.
 

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