An overview of Arthur Savage’s classic lever action.
by Mark R. Hollensen
I recently had the opportunity to clean up and refinish the metal work on a Savage Model 1899 rifle chambered in .30-30. The gun had been sanded previously and had a number deep pits and patches of rust all over the gun, inside and out. It appeared that someone had made an attempt to clean it up but gave up. No wood was supplied with the metal. Being the dedicated gunsmith I am, I decided to take on the old workhorse. The customer was warned that the deep pitting and deep scratches would likely still be on the gun but it would be blue again. He seemed to be elated that I did not hesitate to tackle the job. Besides, I liked this old beauty despite its condition.
Back at the shop I began a detailed inspection and a search for disassembly information in my large library of gun manuals and how-to files. While I didn’t possess a shop manual for the 1899, I did have a Savage Model 99 break down. This particular model had differing design and procedure, so I began the process using what I had on hand as a starting point and figured out the rest on my own.
The design is simple enough and since a man had made it, well, I figured I could make sense of it.
Read more in the April 2016 issue.