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Save 1899 Strength #15226354 09/15/20
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BingsCorner Offline OP
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I was looking through an old copy of "Complete Guide to Handloading" by Phil Sharpe and came across this statement:

Savage guns also are built to stand heavier pressures than normal. However, in 1933 a friend of the author acquired a Model 1899 .30/30 with a poor barrel and wrote Savage for a quotation on the fitting of a .250/3000 barrel to his action. The factory wrote him: “We do not care to subject some of our .30/30 receivers of early production to the increased breech pressure of .250/3000 cartridges, and for this reason we have constantly declined to convert rifles in this manner.” This is more a matter of policy than anything else. The present Model 1899 Savage rifles are being used with cartridges developing breech pressures of from 45,000 to 48,000 pounds per square inch. All barrels are proof tested with a pressure in excess of 55,000 pounds. In 1908, however, there was a change in the design of this model which is not generally known. At serial number about 90,000 the original square-shoulder locking lug at the rear end of the breech bolt was changed to the present oval design, which gave a much better distribution of the pressure.

I have a 1903 .25/35 I am loading for. I have been told that since the 99 action is strong enough for cartridges like the .308 it is safe to load the .25/35 to pressures higher than SAAMI specs. Based on this, (if true) and the probability that brass for lower pressure cartridges may not be as strong as for other cartridges, is seems prudent to stay within SAAMI pressure specs if you have an older rifle before the design change was made. That is what I have been doing and will continue to do. Just passing this along for consideration.

BP-B2

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15226520 09/15/20
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never good a idea to exceed SAAMI pressure spec's and seldom needed.


the consolidation of the states into one vast republic, sure to be aggressive abroad and despotic at home, will be the certain precursor of that ruin which has overwhelmed all those that have preceded. Robert E Lee
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Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15227023 09/15/20
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Originally Posted by BingsCorner
I was looking through an old copy of "Complete Guide to Handloading" by Phil Sharpe and came across this statement:

Savage guns also are built to stand heavier pressures than normal. However, in 1933 a friend of the author acquired a Model 1899 .30/30 with a poor barrel and wrote Savage for a quotation on the fitting of a .250/3000 barrel to his action. The factory wrote him: “We do not care to subject some of our .30/30 receivers of early production to the increased breech pressure of .250/3000 cartridges, and for this reason we have constantly declined to convert rifles in this manner.” This is more a matter of policy than anything else. The present Model 1899 Savage rifles are being used with cartridges developing breech pressures of from 45,000 to 48,000 pounds per square inch. All barrels are proof tested with a pressure in excess of 55,000 pounds. In 1908, however, there was a change in the design of this model which is not generally known. At serial number about 90,000 the original square-shoulder locking lug at the rear end of the breech bolt was changed to the present oval design, which gave a much better distribution of the pressure.

I have a 1903 .25/35 I am loading for. I have been told that since the 99 action is strong enough for cartridges like the .308 it is safe to load the .25/35 to pressures higher than SAAMI specs. Based on this, (if true) and the probability that brass for lower pressure cartridges may not be as strong as for other cartridges, is seems prudent to stay within SAAMI pressure specs if you have an older rifle before the design change was made. That is what I have been doing and will continue to do. Just passing this along for consideration.


Thanks for this post.


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Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15227183 09/15/20
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I'm a pretty conservative loader and wouldn't feel comfortable pushing the recommended pressures in any of my 1899s in 25-35.

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15227336 09/15/20
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The Savage firm reference to pre-1908 production is known to collectors as the early Model 1899 featuring a "square" breech-block, referring to the aft area aspect. Below photos of my 1907-08 Model 1899 in 30-30, with such early style configuration. Later 'about' 1908 and subsequent style adopted a convex breech-block. Reducing the "square effect" corners in the receiver to breech-block mating surface. Such less subject to stress cracks emanating in those earlier 90 degree angle junctures. Pix illustrations below! First early style, then later style in 250-3000 chambering.

Concerning "senior guns", my belief of needing due respect for original patterns/chamberings/pressures, etc. With the convex breech-block Savages, being chambered in such 250 Savage, the matter would seem resolved. Such assuming the particular rifle being examined for condition consistent with conversion!

Best & Stay Safe!
John

Attached Files
R362-2U - Copy.jpg (22.91 KB, 188 downloads)
R362-8U.jpg (13.81 KB, 191 downloads)
R315-1U.jpg (20.99 KB, 190 downloads)
R315-10U - Copy.jpg (14.55 KB, 192 downloads)
IC-A

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15227358 09/15/20
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Ran across that same thing just 3 months ago. It's good info.

https://www.24hourcampfire.com/ubbthreads/ubbthreads.php/ubb/showflat/Number/14999776/
Originally Posted by Calhoun
Ran into a tidbit in the "Complete Guide To Handloading" by Philip B. Sharpe, copyright 1937. Underline is mine.

Found it interesting since there's no mention of heat treatment. Just the design of the bolt.

Quote
Savage guns also are built to stand heavier pressures than normal. However, in 1933 a friend of the author acquired a model 1899 - 30/30 with a poor barrel and wrote Savage for a quotation on the fitting of a 250/3000 barrel to his action. The factory wrote him: "We do not care to subject some of our - 30/30 receivers of early production to the increased breech pressure of - 250/3000 cartridges, and for this reason we have constantly declined to convert rifles in this manner... This is more a matter of policy than anything else. The present Model 1899 Savage rifles are being used with cartridges developing breech pressures of from 45,000 to 48,000 pounds per square inch.. All barrels are proof tested with a pressure load in excess of 55,000 pounds. in 1908, however, there was a change in the design of this model which is not generally known. At serial number 90,000 the original square-should locking lug at the rear end of the breech was changed to the present oval design, which gave a much better distribution of the pressure."

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15227498 09/16/20
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gnoahhh Online Content
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Thanks for bringing up this important topic. It should be presented periodically for the benefit of newbies and stragglers.

The receivers made post-1909 and pre-introduction of the .250-3000 may, or may not, have been of superior alloy/heat treatment than the earlier receivers. To my knowledge, no one of our era has done a scientific analysis of same.


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"Not much you can't fix with $700 and a .30-06." Joe Ryba
Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: gnoahhh] #15227712 09/16/20
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When did the extra heat treat start? 1920ish?


What you have done is not nearly as important as how you have done it!!!
The Old Fart 2008 A.D.
Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: ctw] #15227967 09/16/20
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Originally Posted by ctw
When did the extra heat treat start? 1920ish?


Your wildcatter is showing.... wink smile


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The world has gone completely crazy, starting with most of you!

Intolerance is about to become very popular. I'm ahead of the curve.

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15227968 09/16/20
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gnoahhh Online Content
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I think it coincided with the intro of the .250-3000 5 years earlier. Surmised from previous conversations on the subject here in our hallowed halls.


"You can lead a man to logic, but you cannot make him think." Joe Harz
"Not much you can't fix with $700 and a .30-06." Joe Ryba
IC-B

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15228171 09/16/20
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Lightfoot Offline
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A letter from the factory says the heat treatment for the rear of the receiver started at 266K.

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Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: Lightfoot] #15228297 09/16/20
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We may have had this discussion before. 266K is mid to late 1924. That means that there were 10 years worth of 250-3000 and several years of 300 Sav. made before Savage made the change at 266K.

Note that the letter to Benenson says they won't convert other calibers to .250 or .300. Does that mean the pre-266K rifles in other calibers were treated differently than the .250 and .300?

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15228359 09/16/20
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Lightfoot Offline
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Hard to ascertain the finer points. Savage calls it retempering. I don't think there is any info on what they did prior to that. Was there a lesser degree of heat treatment on older guns?


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Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15228373 09/16/20
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Calhoun Offline
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It's possible that tempering them/heat treating them was so labor/time intensive that they only did it to the 250-3000 and 300 Savage receivers until 1924.

It's always seemed odd to me though.

In 1961, they charged an extra $5 for any 303/30-30/22HP between 90,000 and 900,000 they were converting to 250-3000 or 300 Savage to heat treat it. They no longer recognized a 266,000 cutoff.

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15228470 09/16/20
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I doubt cost was a factor in strength improvement. Far more progression of technology and particularly in terms of cartridge development. The receivers & bolts of the earlier guns entirely safe & adequate for same era rounds! This wasn't just Savage of course! Winchester levers also for instance "blackpowder frames or smokeless; similarly - era related. I do believe Savage pushing the Model 99 technology to limits with the 308 Winchester genre round pressures! Comparable Winchester tech moving well ahead to the rotating locking bolt in their Model 88, Browning with their BLR. Rear bolt locking systems with inherend limitations. Stay within those and great genre of rifles remain!!! smile
Just my take
John

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: iskra] #15228640 09/16/20
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Originally Posted by iskra
I doubt cost was a factor in strength improvement. Far more progression of technology and particularly in terms of cartridge development. The receivers & bolts of the earlier guns entirely safe & adequate for same era rounds! ...
Just my take
John

Except that's not how Savage treated their rifles. Logically it's what we would expect.

In 1954 if you asked them to convert a 1923 Savage 99 chambered in 30-30 into a 300 Savage, they'd heat treat it. But they wouldn't heat treat a 1923 Savage 99 in 250-3000 if you wanted it converted to 300 Savage.

Same in 1961, but they'd do it even to a 1940 rifle.

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15228684 09/16/20
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We have seen earlier serialed rifles that have the up dated 99 stamping on the receiver ring after being returned to the factory for work.


Savage...never say "never".
Rick...

Join the NRA...together we stand, divided we fall!


Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: BingsCorner] #15228700 09/16/20
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Rick, I have the SAVAGE MODEL 99 stamp starting later around 28x,000. 285k-286k matches with other changes that happened.

Originally Posted by Calhoun
*) <= 229,976 has receiver ring blank
*) 232,129 - 236,833 has receiver ring SAVAGE 1899 MODEL
*) 237,xxx is the oddball and is in the midst of a 12,000 number gap
*) 249,671 - 280,016 is SAVAGE 1899 MODEL
*) >= 286,587 is SAVAGE MODEL 99

Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: Lightfoot] #15230924 09/17/20
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Originally Posted by Lightfoot
Hard to ascertain the finer points. Savage calls it retempering. I don't think there is any info on what they did prior to that. Was there a lesser degree of heat treatment on older guns?


When heat treating steel, the part is ALWAYS brought to full hardness first. Some call it "glass hard". This is accomplished by raising the temperature above the "critical" point, which varies dependent on the alloy.

It is then allowed to cool, then tempered. Some manufacturers call it "drawn down". This is done at a much lower temperature, dependent on the alloy and the desired hardness. Depending on the alloy and it's intended use, it may be "re-tempered".

In the time frame being discussed, the steel industry was still learning a LOT of details. Remember the early Springfield 1903's?

Today we even have cryogenic "heat" treatment which is a whole 'nuther can-o-worms...


Hello! My name is Doug and I am a Deplorable.

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Re: Save 1899 Strength [Re: Calhoun] #15232766 09/17/20
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Originally Posted by Calhoun
Rick, I have the SAVAGE MODEL 99 stamp starting later around 28x,000. 285k-286k matches with other changes that happened.


WHAT,ME WRONG shocked ... my bad.blush blush blush You are correct. I misread a comment in my data that said "899 vs 1899" but it was referring to a bad roll stamp.


Savage...never say "never".
Rick...

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