June 6th, 2012

New Product: High-Quality PT&G Bolt Heads for Savage Bolts

Pacific Tool & Gauge, has an outstanding new product, a precision-machined replacement bolt head for Savages. This product, available in a variety of bolt face sizes for $49.99 per unit, can benefit nearly everyone who shoots Savage bolt guns.

Pacific Tool PTG Savage Bolt Head

CLICK HERE for Full Product Review of PT&G Savage Bolt Head

When visiting German Salazar’s excellent Rifleman’s Journal website, we were pleased to see a recent, in-depth review of the PT&G Replacement Bolt Head for Savage Bolts. Written by Norm Darnell, this detailed review explains the benefits of the PT&G replacements, compared to the standard Savage bolt heads. After polishing, the factory bolt head can become slightly dished. According to Darnell: “The area around the firing pin hole sometimes has an indentation deep enough to allow the primer to flow into this void. This makes an unsightly blemish on a fired primer and can lead to hard extraction or worse. One [Savage] rifle I inspected had a continuing problem with pierced primers despite reasonably mild loads[.]” Even after machining the factory bolt face to make it flat, Darnell encountered problems: “The firing pin hole seemed to wear excessively which was of some concern. Material strength of the investment-cast bolt head* appears to be the source of these recurring problems.”

Pacific Tool PTG Savage Bolt Head

After testing out PT&G replacement bolt heads, Darnell found that his problems were solved. With the PT&G replacement bolt head, “the cartridge case heads and primers indicated no case-head rounding or primer damage”. Darnell was convinced, so he proceeded to fit PT&B bolt heads “on all three of my 308 bolts and one 223 with one spare bolt of each.” It appears that PT&G has a winner here — a smart, affordable new product that remedies a commonly-observed problem with factory Savage bolt heads.

* In the article, author Darnell writes that Savage factory bolt heads are investment cast. Fred Moreo of Sharp Shooter Supply says this is not correct: “Savage bolt heads were NEVER investment cast. From the get-go they were machined from solid stock. In 1988 they went to special profiled 41L40 bar stock to save machining operations and heat treated to 35-42 RC.”

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June 6th, 2012

State Dept. Policy Shift May Allow Return of So. Korean Garands

In 2009, to raise money for its defense budget, the Korean Defense Ministry announced plans to sell 87,000 M1 Garands to American collectors. Initially, it looked like there was a “green light” for the return of these historic arms, which were originally provided to South Korea by the American government. The rifles’ return was widely anticipated by American military rifle match shooters and gun collectors.

However, in March of 2010, the State Department blocked importation of the South Korean M1 Garands based on the expressed fear that the rifles would fall into the wrong hands. According to FoxNews.com, a State Department spokesman said that: “The transfer of such a large number of weapons … could potentially be exploited by individuals seeking firearms for illicit purposes.”

State Department Apparently Will No Longer Block Return of South Korean Garands
It looks like the State Department may have reversed itself. In response to pressure from Senator Jon Tester of Montana, the State Department now says that it will allow South Korea to return the rifles, once a qualified importer is selected. Sen. Tester’s office asserts that “the rifles will be sold in the U.S. through the Civilian Marksmanship Program” (CMP), which has sold many thousands of other surplus M1 Garands.

Sen. Tester declared: “From World War II to Korea and Vietnam, M1 Garand rifles played a crucial role in history. These American-made firearms will always be valued as collector’s items, and law-abiding Americans have the right to keep them under our Constitution’s Second Amendment. I’m glad the State Department listened to my concerns and those of America’s gun collectors.”

South Korean M1 Garand CMP

CMP States It Will NOT Sell Commercially Imported Garands
Senator Tester’s office has said the CMP will sell the Korean Garands. However, if the South Korean Garands are imported commercially, and NOT simply returned to the U.S. Army, it appears that these rifles would not be able to be sold or distributed by the CMP. Orest Michaels, CMP Chief Operating Officer, explained that the CMP would not re-sell commercially imported rifles:

“The CMP is not a firearms importer and we would not have any involvement of any kind in anything that may happen with these Korean rifles and carbines if they were ‘sold’ to an importer. The only way any rifle or carbine from any country can find its way to the CMP is if the country returns ‘loaned’ rifles back to the U.S. Army — at no cost to the U.S.[.] When that happens, the CMP ‘may’ possibly receive some of those rifles. Korea does not plan on returning (repatriating) any rifles to the U.S. Army, but plans to ‘sell’ these rifles to an importer. According to the recent news and rumors, the U.S. State Dept. has agreed to allow Korea to sell the rifles, even though the U.S. Army claimed the rifles and carbines should be returned to the U.S. Army at no cost. CMP will not have any involvement in this.” Michaels added: “There is no need to wait for the Korean Garands to make a purchase. CMP has plenty of M1 Garands for sale now.”

We commend the State Department for reversing its misguided policy blocking return of these historic arms. We wonder if this reversal can be attributed in large part to Tester’s efforts in Washington. After the State Department blocked the rifle’s sale in 2010, Tester drafted legislation blocking Executive-branch interference with importation of American-made guns that were originally provided to a foreign government. Tester, Chairman of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus, also led efforts in the U.S. Senate to block U.S. funding to promote the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty.

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