Win 94 loading gate question

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superchicken
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Win 94 loading gate question

Post by superchicken »

Fellas,

I picked up a 1954 Win 94 in 30-30 last week that that is a shooter, not a safe queen. It has a couple of minor issues that I'd like to fix. I did a little Googlage on it and found how to address the friction stud issue, but couldn't find much on the loading issue. I'd appreciate any advice y'all can provide to diagnose.

When there are rounds in the tube, they seem to come back just a hair too far making it difficult to load the next round. They are not coming all the way back, just enough for the rim to hit the front edge of the loading gate. It doesn't make it impossible to load rounds, but it's a to-handed affair where you have to push the loading gate down with one finger and push the round in with the other hand. The loading gate screws are tight. The gun seems to cycle rounds fairly smoothly once they are in. The carrier seems to be functioning fine and lifts the rounds as long as you don't short stroke it. Have not taken it apart yet. What do you think?

Thanks all,

Sean
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Griff
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Re: Win 94 loading gate question

Post by Griff »

I'm assuming you mean loading the magazine. Having a few Winchester 94s, I encounter this "problem" with nearly all of them...

I've never found a "fix"... nor attempted one. What I do when loading, is to leave the rim of the first cartridge and each succeeding cartridge sticking out from the loading port, and use the next cartridge to push it in, at some point, I need to use the middle finger of the hand holding the gun to keep that cartridge from backing too far out. When I've finished loading, I use the little finger of my loading hand to push the last cartridge a bit further into the port so it'll clear the "spring cover" (official part name of the loading gate according to Winchester parts catalogs). :D

Thusly:
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If the gun is in otherwise working order, no need to "fix" it!
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Malamute
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Re: Win 94 loading gate question

Post by Malamute »

I disagree about "no need to fix it". There is something that can be done. Older 94's (pre-war) I've used can be topped off easily at any point, fresh rounds go in the gate without drama. I never bother with not pushing the rounds part way in when loading, I just push them all in since its not hard to load more. Newer guns often have burrs and roughness on the back of the gate that hinder loading more rounds. Polishing the small bevel on the back face of the gate and the rib on its backside helps. The gate is supposed to cam the already loaded rounds slightly forward to allow fresh ones in, any roughness hinders that.

You can see the polished area, all of it up to the front edge of the gate in important to slick up. I polish them with a small triangular ceramic stone.
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Go to about the angle change, and gently round and deburr it.
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Getting the gate back in without crossthreading the screw in the hardest part. Getting the screw barely started, with the gate perhaps not in perfect position at the front end, then getting the gate back into perfect position helps me some. The curve in the spring arm of the gate makes it hard to get the screw started straight.

I cant think of a good reason to not want the gun to function to its proper potential and be as easy to use as it should be. What many accept as "normal" isnt normal for older examples of the gun, and I see no good reason to accept substandard performance, especially when the fix is so simple.

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Last edited by Malamute on Tue May 05, 2015 1:43 pm, edited 6 times in total.
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OldWin
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Re: Win 94 loading gate question

Post by OldWin »

While not being able to handle your particular rifle, I'm pretty sure what you are experiencing is "normal".

As for the loading sequence, Griff has it right. Every one of these rfles are a little different so you will have to learn its "personality". In my experience, the post war examples aren't quite as smooth as the pre war but work just fine.

Some want to push the partially loaded round back out of the gate more than others. Usually there is a spot where it will hold itself. If not, use a finger to hold it.

If the cartridge stop or lifter spring were worn, you would have bigger issues. Cartridges would snap over the stop and under the lifter making cycling impossible.
A quick lifter spring test is to push in the loading gate with the rifle empty. It will usually hang up or seriously drag on the lifter. It doesn't sound like this is your problem but I will say that it seems most common on post war-pre 64 examples. That is just my observation but I think its a hardness issue.

The biggest killer of these rifles is the constant loading and unloading many see during hunting season and poor lubrication. When I unload a 94, I only open the action enough to allow the cartridge to "tip out" with the muzzle pointed skyward. Bring the lever forward enough till the cartridge stop lets the next round snap out of the magazine. Then open the action but stop before the lifter snaps up. Point the muzzle up again and let the cartridge tip out bullet first up through the guides. Repeat sequence till empty.
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Chuck 100 yd
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Re: Win 94 loading gate question

Post by Chuck 100 yd »

What all three of those guys said + 1. That is the way most operate. Can it be improved? YES, is it worth the trouble? That depends on the user and his/ her attitude And mechanical ability.
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Re: Win 94 loading gate question

Post by Pete44ru »

.

Model 94 dis-assembly can be rocket science, for some folks............. :roll:



.
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AJMD429
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Re: Win 94 loading gate question

Post by AJMD429 »

Pete44ru wrote:Model 94 dis-assembly can be rocket science, for some folks............. :roll:
Naaah... just the RE-assembly... :lol:
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superchicken
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Re: Win 94 loading gate question

Post by superchicken »

Sorta figured that would be the answer. I've been loading it like Griff described, but it takes a little getting used to. I've a tendency to push them in a little too far and have to do the two-handed thing for the next round. When I take it down I'll check the back of the loading gate, but doubt I'll mess with it much. Like I said, the gun runs fine with the exception of needing a new friction stud and spring. I've got a couple of new apertures coming for the old steel Lyman 66 on it. The ghost ring is just too big for me when you get passed about 25 yards. Other than that, she'll stay like the old man before me had her... Well I'll wear off some more bluing and probably leave a few more marks on the wood before it goes to someone else.
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Malamute
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Re: Win 94 loading gate question

Post by Malamute »

If you have it apart, the hard part is done.

Having used them both ways, its a real pleasure to be able to stick more rounds in at any time without it being a chore, or just push them in without worrying abotu it when loading. Once ina while they need a little extra nudge, especially if the mag is getting close to full, but overall, the old ones I have and the ones I've polished up are pure pleasure to load.
"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat." -Theodore Roosevelt-

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superchicken
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Re: Win 94 loading gate question

Post by superchicken »

Thanks, Malamute. I'll take a look at it as soon as I get a chance to take her apart. Do you have any suggestions for reinstalling the loading gate screw? It does look like it'll be a challenge.
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Griff
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Re: Win 94 loading gate question

Post by Griff »

Either swing it down with the link removed (on post '64s the spring cover is the first part I install), and start a couple of threads without any tension... make sure you know just how the screw feels in those threads, to ensure you don't cross thread it... there's only about 4 or 5 threads total.

Otherwise, you're going to do a balancing act by putting the spring cover in place, then mashing it as flat as possible to get the threads started in just about nearly their final position. The trick here is to not move the threaded hole from it's final position as you squeeze the spring flat. Letting the cover come thru the port is no good as once the screw is in place, there's no good way to get the cover back thru the port.
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There is a fine line between hobby & obsession!
AND... I'm over it!!
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