M40a1 build guide

M40_A1

Sergeant
Feb 11, 2010
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Holy HE$% no one bid?????
The person who hacked Ebay probably did so in order to get that stock!
It was a civilian stock for a single-shot 40x, needed inletting, had a hairline crack in the forestock, needed the recoil pad replaced. The only thing it had going for it was the semi-smear pattern. Still, I'm surprised it didn't sell at that price for the pattern alone.
 

pmclaine

Gunny Sergeant
Nov 6, 2011
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OK I PM'd a member and he didn't know, but I was wondering if there is a purpose to having the action screws extending below the bottom metal?
The Winchester metal doesn't allow for them to be countersunk. These were built at a time when lots of custom parts were not available.

Hex head screws, by far, beat the original slotted screws. Take a look at some old mil surps with slotted screws and you will see how butchered they become through use.

I love the hex head screws because you can be confident you have the right torque and they will take more torque. If Torx screws had of been common at the time they probably would have went that way.

These are my suppositions and I don't know if they are right.
 

M40_A1

Sergeant
Feb 11, 2010
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The oval head Remington screws fit the Winchester bottom metal screw holes just fine. Unmodified Winchester TG and FP have tapered countersinks just like the Remington bottom metal did.

The builders had a choice to make. Apparantly they decided they wanted to use allen cap screws for torque, and would rather mill the countersinks flat in the modified Wincheter bottom metal, rather than have to machine each cap screw to fit the existing factory tapered countersinks. Then, the only thing needing modification on the standard cap screws, whether the originals or replacements, would be the lengths.
 
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pmclaine

Gunny Sergeant
Nov 6, 2011
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The oval head Remington screws fit the Winchester bottom metal screw holes just fine. Unmodified Winchester TG and FP have tapered countersinks just like the Remington bottom metal did.

The builders had a choice to make. Apparantly they decided they wanted to use allen cap screws for torque, and would rather mill the countersinks flat in the modified Wincheter bottom metal, rather than have to machine each cap screw to fit the existing factory tapered countersinks. Then, the only thing needing modification on the standard cap screws, whether the originals or replacements, would be the lengths.
My point about the countersink was that the bottom metal is not thick enough, like DD Ross, to allow for an Allen head screw to bury itself and fit flush or countersunk.

I think they immediately dismissed using a slotted screw for a much stronger piece of hardware. Function was more important than form exposed screw heads never concerned them. Again look at any old 1903 and how screwed up the action screws are and it's apparent Allen's are a much better choice.

I note in the build book for these rifles indicates that screws were bought in one size and the 2112 was instructed to cut the screw appropriately and than "stone" the cut end to finish. Later function checks were to determine that neither the action screws nor the scope base screws impeded on the bolt track.
 
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M40_A1

Sergeant
Feb 11, 2010
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My point about the countersink was that the bottom metal is not thick enough, like DD Ross, to allow for an Allen head screw to bury itself and fit flush or countersunk.
Countersunk doesn't necessarily mean flush, but now I see what you were getting at. Exactly right. But, my point about the screws fitting was directed at MescaBug's post. Sorry, I should have done the quote thingy.
I dont believe the usual countersink Rem 700 screws would fit the Winchester BM.
 
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pmclaine

Gunny Sergeant
Nov 6, 2011
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I figured you guys would know if anyone would.
Out of curiosity does the exposed back screw come into play when you are shooting?
Meaning - Is it in the way when you grip the rifle?

In my very limited experience with an M40A1 it does not come into play at all. Three fingers on the pistol grip, one on the trigger and the thumb either gripping or floating as per your preference.
 
Mar 1, 2010
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Meaning - Is it in the way when you grip the rifle?

In my very limited experience with an M40A1 it does not come into play at all. Three fingers on the pistol grip, one on the trigger and the thumb either gripping or floating as per your preference.
I guess I was wondering if the screw might bump your middle finger under recoil?
 

pmclaine

Gunny Sergeant
Nov 6, 2011
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I guess I was wondering if the screw might bump your middle finger under recoil?
Possessed of regular sized fingers I have not had that problem. Should you have been dismissed from proctology school because your classmates called you "Sausage Fingers" it may be an issue.
 
Nov 16, 2010
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pmclaine

Gunny Sergeant
Nov 6, 2011
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I've talk to them twice already and they say they not going to make another run of them so i had to go another direction,, but i wish they would.
If you are still interested you have nothing to lose telling Lazy21 you will buy one if he can swing the deal. He us not promising anything but he's trying and as a seller of their scopes he certainly has more contact with USO than An interested end user.
 
Nov 16, 2010
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If you are still interested you have nothing to lose telling Lazy21 you will buy one if he can swing the deal. He us not promising anything but he's trying and as a seller of their scopes he certainly has more contact with USO than An interested end user.
Well i talk to someone there, dont know if it was lazy21 or not but my name was put on the list of interested people, but thats been awhile back.
 

afsp

Private
Jul 3, 2009
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Forgive a foolish question or if maybe I mis-read. The molded stock pattern I thought was spec for some issue rifles being built/rebuilt with new molded camo stocks replacing some smear stocks? I know the smears still lasted a good while(dang fine stock) so maybe not too many molded-camo stocks were used but I figured they still count as "spec." If and when I do an A1 build my plan was to go specifically for a molded-camo stock with C prefix action-unless the molded camo stocks were never used than I'd search out a smear pattern one, but I like the look of the molded pattern.
Oops, four months late on a reply isn't bad I guess!? That stock is in woodland camo so it has black in it, proper would've been the forest camo. I got that stock back when I was an E4 overseas and fully inletted McMillans were only a few hundred bucks. I got that one for my PSS with the M70 trigger guard inlet ready to go. It eventually got sent down to TBA for what you see there.

It's funny because the McMillan distributor was getting the A1 return stocks back then and I picked one up for $150. Nobody wanted them back then! I've been working on getting it cleaned up so I can restock the TBA rifle. McMillan even refurb'd several with new recoil pads and paint jobs and sold them off. Have one of those too on a build I had done some years back. The bedding was left in place for the most part but they milled out the recoil lug recess.
 
Jul 30, 2012
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Ok, gentlemen... I've gone through this thread. Some as you may know me from my Redfield anodizing work.
Anyway, I've got the old M40 bug... I've had the AR, Garand, M1 Carbine, 1903A4 bugs... Then the M14 bug... I probably have one of the only original Brookfield XM25 kits that I personally built into a rifle, confirmed by Mitch Mateiko himself...
Anyway, I digress...
As I said, I now have the M40 bug... Build a vintage USMC M40, which originally compelled me to learn how to anodize. That has turned into a lot of scope repair work I'm doing now... M82s, M84s, Weavers, AR TELS, you name it....
I digress once again.. It's the ADD.
So, I'm really trying to narrow down what I NEED for an M40A1 build. I'm on lazy21's MST100 list. Now I'm looking for a suitable receiver/bolt, but outside of the original M40 serial number ranges, what are suitable serial numbers to look for?
Is a new production McMillan stock "ok", as it's a clone anyway, or should I really wait for an original smear stock?
I think I pretty much understand my barrel and bottom metal options.
I think I understand I should find a 2112 to do the build.
I just got one of TWOMANATTACKS mounts, which I will eithe parkerize? or Duracoat appropriately.
 
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Oct 2, 2012
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Now I'm looking for a suitable receiver/bolt, but outside of the original M40 serial number ranges, what are suitable serial numbers to look for?
Toki,

M40 were converted to M40A1. So any M40 serial (168179 -> 322769) is correct for a build. A batch of C series (100 IIRC) were added in 1991. So a C series from that period is also correct. Unfortunately, I dont think there is a serial or date range for those receivers.

Is a new production McMillan stock "ok", as it's a clone anyway, or should I really wait for an original smear stock?
That's up to you. If you have the wallet to spend 1000-1200$ on a return stock, good for you. I used a new McMillan M40A1 HTG for my build. I could not afford a return stock at that time, and didnt want to wait. You can have it inletted for the Winchester bottom metal and have them install the Wichita swivels.

That would be a custom order and at least 7-8 months wait time.

If you go through to whole thread, its been discussed over and over again; should I use original parts or not?

Check this thread:

http://forum.snipershide.com/sniper...-f-its-only-m40a1-if-has-all-right-parts.html
 
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M40_A1

Sergeant
Feb 11, 2010
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Lots of E-series receivers were used.

I just recently got a new M40A1 stock made. The wait time was 5 months. You have to provide the proper recoil pad these days. Since they don't want to make smear patterns, it will work fine with my like-new E-series receiver. I'd love to have an original stock, just to have. But for a new build I don't want to have stripped swivel anchors, chips, gouges and/or cracks.
 
Toki,

M40 were converted to M40A1. So any M40 serial (168179 -> 322769) is correct for a build. A batch of C series (100 IIRC) were added in 1991. So a C series from that period is also correct. Unfortunately, I dont think there is a serial or date range for those receivers.
]
The small number of aquired Cs makes it a difficult thing to duplicate properly if trying to find a close serial range, I think I heard they were all C671XXXX. However if not concerned with getting the serial that close there are other Cs out there. Es seem like great actions as well, I'm personally not as fond of the G actions but really nothing wrong with them either, just aesthetics for me. The Cs seem to be the most popular for letter prefix A1 builds even though again the issue numbers for Cs are so small compared to Es and Gs and the 6dig and whatnot. Of any Remington action be it an A1 or a std production rifle the C prefix are my fav, that's my only reasoning. Otherwise a 6dig is also extremely desireable(my second choice) for an A1 build! I also wouldn't fret putting a newer blotch camo HTG stock on a 6 dig as I'm sure older actions were rebuilt with newer stocks, quite a few photos of proof of it but the old smears are also really nice if you can find and afford one.
 
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Dec 9, 2010
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SO CAL
I have been feilding alot of questions about the M40A1 guns that I have. The guns I call "PEDIGREE" guns. There are other quality builders that make a quality replica M40A1 but NONE of them match to the same detail as the guns that I have built. These guns are the finest shooting guns I have ever owned. They are the absolute closest thing to owning an issued M40A1 that is available now. They are built at PWS Quantico, VA by qualified armors to the USMC spec! The difference between my gun and a USMC issued gun is mine comes to me and theirs went to the Fleet Marine Force (FMF). The true/correct finish is applied and an AUTHENTIC USMC issued gun book is generated as a birth certificate for the weapon. The gunbook is personalized to the gun and correctly stamped in every applicable area. The following information should help answer most of the questions about my guns and why I call them "pedigree" guns.

1. Finish is USMC spec black oxide, as is used by the USMC.

2. 24” (from the recoil lug) HART barrel utilizes conventional rifling with correct twist, M40A1 spec barrel contour identified by HART as "Scout Sniper" taper. Correct Recessed target crown cut.

3. Action is a blue-printed Remington 700 short action that includes surface ground recoil lug; trued receiver face, threads, receiver lug shoulders and bolt head, lapped bolt lugs. The receiver is machined with the correct stripper clip slots along with the ejection port modification. 6 digit actions are marked “U.S.” above the serial number to match the original issue M40A1s.

4. Stock is a McMillan plain HTG with molded-in forest camo, like the original ... no stippling! Correct Wichita 1 1/4” sling swivels anchored into the stock by internal molded-in steel inserts per the original contract. The 1/2” brown Pachmayr basket weave recoil pad is fitted for the 13 1/2″ LOP. The action is hand bedded 1- 1/2” forward of the recoil lug, remainder of barrel is free floating.

5. The bottom metal is steel Model 70 two-piece modified to accomodate the trigger and McMillan stock inletting. Socket cap bolts hold barrelled action to the bottom metal and stock.

6. MARKINGS Serial numbers on all sub assemblies including bolt handle, bottom metal (both hinged floor plate and and trigger bow), scope base, and barrel. “RTE-P”, the proof mark on barrel.

7. The scope base is hand fitted to the receiver as the originals were. The most historically accurate scope base made to date. An ABSOLUTE true match to the original Unertl mounts. Not like the remakes of the past ... but true USMC equivillant mount with correct thread pitch ring screws and 6-48 slotted retaining screws.

8. Trigger is an old style Remington trigger that has been notched and tuned to a crisp 3 pounds.

9. USMC issue gun book is properly stamped on the appropriate pages by the 2112 that built the gun. Guns are test fired at PWS before I receive them.
 
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Jul 22, 2014
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Anderson, KY
I started out building an M40A5 but then became side tracked and just customized a Remington 700. Now I'm sorta wanting to convert it into an A5 again. Has anyone completed an A5 and can give me a round about idea of the price?
 
Jul 30, 2012
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Anyone ever use or hear of C&H Precision Weapon in south Florida? 2112 by the name of Dave Clark?
Let me know.

Picked up a E prefix receiver group, thinking about shipping it (and 2manattack's mount) to them for a build, and being done with it.
 

pmclaine

Gunny Sergeant
Nov 6, 2011
7,752
4,449
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Anyone ever use or hear of C&H Precision Weapon in south Florida? 2112 by the name of Dave Clark?
Let me know.

Picked up a E prefix receiver group, thinking about shipping it (and 2manattack's mount) to them for a build, and being done with it.
JerryHudsonII had a Dave Clark build in the WTS section recently. He was very happy with it. PM him for details.
 

rlm8541

Full Member
Sep 12, 2012
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Not sure if they are worth any more than any other 12 "right now". It might be to a select circle of people. He is a friend of mine. He isnt really building any more as he really doesnt have the time. But he is back at PWS teaching the new 2111's to be 12's coming in.
 
Oct 28, 2005
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He signed the book for my A3 for QC and that means something to me given his history at RTE/PWS. That said the craftsmanship and attention to detail of the 12 that built my rifle stands on its own.
 

ffemt

Sergeant
Jan 10, 2011
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Tokiwartooth, I recently took possession of a 100% correct M40A1 build by Dave Clark from PWS in Florida. Mine has a 6 digit Ser.#314XXX, came back to me with all the correct markings and coated in Black Oxide. I used one of TMA's (Thanx TwoMan) bases with my MST-100. Currently waiting on my sling from Turner Saddlery and it'll be complete. The gun shoots lights out and is absolutely beautiful. Dave was Quantico's PWS NCOIC for the last several years before his retirement after 26 years. His work is impeccable, and I would not hesitate to have another build done by him. Dave is in business with another former marine, (Buck Holly), and between the two of them, they run an upstanding business for any type of build you might want...... Bob.