The product of recent work I performed with a focus on practical safety issue, here’s how I brought a Remington R1 up to safety specifications.
by RK Campbell
I was once in the car business and repaired some very interesting vehicles. While I worked with many excellent people, I learned much from dealing with the other types. One was always in panic mode. He would bring in a vehicle with two doors knocked off and a bent support and wanted the work done quick and cheap. I once called another fly-by-night operator and told him I could not replace a cracked windshield because his support column (pillar) was bent. He replied that was okay because the windshield was in it – yeah, that’s why it broke. So a new one went in with a pretty good gap between the roof support and the glass. And so on. Thank God it was illegal to sell a broken welded chassis or they would done that as well. I was young, needed the work, and did the impossible on the cheap. It doesn’t work out to try to please everyone. Always be thankful for the good customers!
As gunsmiths we have the same type of customers. They want the work done on the cheap but still fast and with impeccable quality. One customer simply cannot judge quality and brings in rough old guns wanting them brought up great shooting and like-new looking condition. He purchased a worn Smith & Wesson for $500 because that model is bringing $800 but his repair bill with parts and labor will be $400 and it will still be a hard used gun. Then there is the gun shop employee who just doesn’t realize that people take the good scopes off their rifles when traded in almost without exception and the scope will be cocked sideways and perhaps the reticle is broken. Or, one customer I had with an early Colt Double Eagle with a blown barrel. He was too cheap to order another barrel and get his money for this rarity. And so forth. People able to assay quality and who know about mechanics seldom call me. Another takes in broken guns for a pittance and saves them for me. Even if he gave them to me I could not make money on them, even though I enjoy the work and enjoy teaching.
The subject of this article is a Remington R1 that had the potential of being as dangerous as a coiled rattlesnake. I took in one of these pistols and it brought forth more than a little ire. This R1 wasn’t a bad looking gun but it had seen some use. The shopkeep asked me about it because the hammer fell when the slide was dropped on an empty chamber and he did not catch this until the gun was already purchased and logged in. I was called in to look it over.
The Remington featured a…
Read more in the February 2022 issue.
Don’t miss a single issue. Subscribe now or renew your subscription.
For non-subscribers wanting free access, submit one free article to use on our site and we’ll send you a complete digital copy of any issue of your choice (April 2006 to current).