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Posted: 12/25/2005 8:18:56 PM EDT
I had some fun today. My girlfriend's grandfather asked me to come over and help him clean up a gun he'd had in his closet for about 40 years. Well I was pretty excited, and when I got there it was more fun that I hoped for.

All he remembered was it was a 16 gauge. What it turned out to be was a Remington Model 31 pump that he'd bought in 1947. It was very dirty, but in almost perfect condition!

I spent about 3 hours tearing it apart, cleaning it and reassembling it. It was kinda fun. Sorta like a big puzzle both ways! As usual it was actually easier to assemble than it was to take apart, but some of that was due to about 60 years of gunk buildup. I only put the receiver guts in wrong like 3 times before I got the assembly sequence figured out.

The thing that really impressed me though was the intricacy of the machining in the receiver. I can easily see why Remington had to phase this gun out in favor of the 870 due to cost concerns, but MAN was it a thing of beauty and precision...

I made him swear that since I did all that work he had to promise to give me dibs on buying it if he ever sold it. Anyone know a value on a gun of this model and vintage, full-choked, and about 98% perfect finish-wise?

Anyway, I just thought I'd share. I have to admit it was one of the most satisfying projects I've worked on in ages. Probably since the first time I built an AR lower!

I really gotta order that gunsmithing course I keep getting offers in the mail for... This stuff is a blast!
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