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Huvius
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Ron Snover barrel
May 16th, 2011 at 7:08pm
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I just picked up a 1902 Webley rifle which has been rebarreled as a match rifle with what I was told is a Ron Snover Metford barrel in 45/90.  Bore is .449-.450".
Interestingly, the only marks on the barrel are a couple London proofs but nothing else.  Does he have a mark?
I have heared of the reputation of these barrels but my intent is to rebarrel it back to a sporter configuration - probably a 577NE.
Are these barrels desirable?  
My hope is that I could sell this barrel and use the sights on my Rigby if they are appropriate.
« Last Edit: May 16th, 2011 at 7:28pm by Huvius »  
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ssdave
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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #1 - May 17th, 2011 at 12:27am
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Contact me with length, thread diameter, barrel dimensions, and twist and I might be interested.  Ron made good barrels, nothing exceptional, but good.  I have a 50 cal one on a rifle that he custom cut for me.  I'd use another if the price is right and it can be fit to something else I have..

dave
  
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Huvius
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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #2 - May 17th, 2011 at 12:46am
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I will take some measurements asap.
This is on a big Webley action so it may not fit too many other actions if any at all as-is.
It does have a bit of a larger diameter for about +/- one inch ahead of the action so I would think it could be cut and threaded for just about any action and rechambered.  Right now, its length is 33" from the action face.
  
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ssdave
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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #3 - May 18th, 2011 at 12:14am
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As long as the thread tenon is big, it can easily be turned down and rethreaded for something else.

What would you like to get out of it? 

dave
  
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Bnelson
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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #4 - May 20th, 2011 at 10:14am
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I've got a 1902 Webley action that is in need of a barrel.  If SSDave doesn't take it, I will probably be interested.  Just let me know how things progress. 
Bruce
  
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Huvius
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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #5 - May 20th, 2011 at 1:56pm
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Gents,
I will get good measurements and pictures up this weekend.
Part of my inquiry was to confirm that it is a genuine Snover barrel - don't want to mis-represent it.  Mainly looking to establish a value - hopefully worth enough to offset the new barrel's cost.
Also, I am waiting for the sights to arrive to determine if they will work on my Rigby.  If not, they may go with the barrel or separately.

Bnelson, do you have an action only, or do you have the stock etc.?
  
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Bnelson
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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #6 - May 20th, 2011 at 10:29pm
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What I have is the action only.  The wood is not a real problem, but just won't be original.  I've got some nice wood to use, but haven't gotten around to making the stock yet.  Does your barrel have a 1"-12 thread or something different?  If your barrel has London proofs, is it a reline job?  I wouldn't expect a 45-90 on an original barrel, but wouldn't expect London proofs on a Ron Snover barrel either.  Somewhat of a mystery. 
Bruce
  
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Huvius
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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #7 - May 21st, 2011 at 12:09pm
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OK, looks like the twist is 1 in 18".  Barrel is browned.
The barrel shank (ahead of the threads) is 1.28" dia. and 1.14" in length.
Then there is a shoulder down to 1.12" and a straight taper to the muzzle of .990"
I don't have a way of removing the barrel so a measurement at the breech is as close as i can get right now and it looks like 1.08" but this is not an accurate measurement.
As for the proofs, perhaps in the UK this gun would need to pass proof to be used in competition.(?)  I suspect that there is no modern proof for use with black powder so the London Nitro proof is all there is...
The forend on the gun is fastened with two cylinders which are dovetailed into the bottom of the barrel.
The sights came and the are Mike Neumann made with just one staff which looks to be for mid/long range work.  There is a slot in the box for a longer staff but it isn't there.
I thought of re-contouring the barrel and chambering to 450No.2 NE, but this would most likely cost more than just ordering a barrel of the desired contour and I am not sure of the Metford rifling in a nitro sporter - not very authentic...
Then, of course, I could use the barrel on my Westley side lever, maybe in 500/450No.1 Express... Tongue

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« Last Edit: May 21st, 2011 at 12:18pm by Huvius »  
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Old-Win
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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #8 - May 21st, 2011 at 5:57pm
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Yes, somewhat of a mystery.  It looks like it was rebarreled for LR shooting in England. I think they all have to go through the proof house afterwards.  If it has a Neumann sight, it could be a barrel made in Europe or South Africa.  I believe ther were a couple custom barrel makers over there that would do Metford rifling and could have done the work.  Their names escape me but hopefully Gert or Harry will chime in and fill us in on who could have done it.  They know all that info on your side of the pond. I'd leave it as is for a while unless you're going to take on a charging tiger or cape buff. Roll Eyes  Get some blackpowder, cases and boolits and have some fun with it.
Huvius and B. Nelson, could you show us pictures of your rifles and actions??  Bob
  
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harry_eales
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AGAIN.

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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #9 - May 22nd, 2011 at 2:01am
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Old-Win wrote on May 21st, 2011 at 5:57pm:
Yes, somewhat of a mystery.  It looks like it was rebarreled for LR shooting in England. I think they all have to go through the proof house afterwards.  If it has a Neumann sight, it could be a barrel made in Europe or South Africa.  I believe ther were a couple custom barrel makers over there that would do Metford rifling and could have done the work.  Their names escape me but hopefully Gert or Harry will chime in and fill us in on who could have done it.  They know all that info on your side of the pond. I'd leave it as is for a while unless you're going to take on a charging tiger or cape buff. Roll Eyes  Get some blackpowder, cases and boolits and have some fun with it.
Huvius and B. Nelson, could you show us pictures of your rifles and actions??  Bob


Hello Bob,

I believe there is one chap in Europe still doing Metford style rifling and perhaps one other in Britain but unfortunately I have no further details though I'm sure Gert will. Metford rifling was perhaps the ultimate rifling form for Black Powder cartridges and although if was initially used on the then new 0.303" British military cartridge it didn't work at all well, as the new Cordite powders erroded the rifling in a very short time and the British Military and most gunmakers went to Enfield rifling which apparently could, and did, work well with smokeless powders.  Cry

Metford Rifling was 'Gain Twist' which works very well with BP and lead alloy bullets but how it would handle jacketed bullets I have no idea.  Undecided

Harry
  
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MartiniBelgian
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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #10 - May 22nd, 2011 at 3:01am
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Think I saw that rifle being used, actually - I probably know the owner...
The barrel could actually be a Snover.  I also have one of his barrels, 5-groove segmental rifling, uniform 1:18" twist.  Ron Snover isn't making barrels anymore, as far as I know.
Only other guy I know of making Metford segmental rifling is Arthur Smith.  And yes, any new pressure-bearing part would require proof in the UK (as in any european country).
The issue with Metford segmental rifling was not so much the rifling, but the erosive properties of the cordite.  Enfield rifling only worked better becuse it was deeper, so lasted longer.  FWIW, the jap Arisaka rifle also had Metford segmental rifling.   There is also an earlier style of Metford rifling, which is more conventional.
Any chance of a pic of the sight?  It won't be very useful on a 577NE, but Mike Neumann does make a pretty good Vernier sight.
  
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Huvius
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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #11 - May 22nd, 2011 at 4:29pm
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Here is the sight set.
You can see that the long staff and one eye cup is missing.
In the upper left is another base which is lower than the one on the rifle by about .25".

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Re: Ron Snover barrel
Reply #12 - May 22nd, 2011 at 10:11pm
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Beautiful rifle!
  
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