A fireman walked from a burning house with an old Stevens bolt-action shotgun. Here’s how I repaired this fire-damaged gun.
by Norman E. Johnson
The old, fire-damaged shotgun was brought in with a plea from the owner to, “Do what you can with
it. I like the old gun and would like to hunt with it some more.” Despite everything, the gun appeared quite sound with a huge chunk out of the plastic buttplate and the stock varnish mottled with smoke and water marks. The metal showed the ravages of years of hunting and was stained by water and smoke, but otherwise appeared quite sound. I assured the man I would do what I could with the gun.
The Stevens Model 258A was made from 1937 to 1965 in 20 gauge with a 26-inch barrel and detachable two-shot magazine. Suggested retail price was $95 but the gun retailed for much less. On closer examination, the gun chambered and extracted shotshells well and left a nice, deep firing pin mark on a primed, uncharged shell. I had adjusted the trigger for him more than thirty years ago because he felt it pulled too hard when he had a deer in his sights. He never used more than the front bead and the narrow-ribbed markings over the receiver for a sight and nearly always got his deer.
In repairing the old 258A, the old hunter asked if I could…
Read more in the November 2016 issue.