A customer’s broken stock had all the looks of a throwaway until a closer look revealed otherwise.
by Norman E. Johnson
It began with a phone call from a hunter whose son had dropped his M77 Ruger .270 WCF from a tree stand and broke the stock. Both were saddened by the incident and they came to me questioning the cost of a new stock. They hadn’t brought the gun with them, having no thought that the stock could be repaired. Luckily, they lived only four miles away, so the father had his son pick the gun up to have me inspect it.
On close examination of the stock, I found a jagged, transverse break completely through the right side of the small of the stock from the tang mortise above, including the checkering. The fracture extended inward through the web forward of the trigger mortise extending into the magazine opening. Orthopedic surgeons would term this a comminuted fracture requiring hours of meticulous repair. With the action still in the stock I could apply gentle pressure and readily open the cracks. All pieces of wood appeared intact and the cracks seemed to close quite well as I applied linear pressure to the stock. Because of that I felt I could quite successfully repair the stock and was given the go-ahead to do so.
Read more in our August 2015 issue.