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Model 70 featherweight

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2010 at 14:53
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So I know everyone is crazy about the Pre-64 model 70's but unfortunately they were never chambered in the caliber I am currently looking for, 6.5x55 SW. I came across a nice looking push feed, featherweight XTR in 6.5x55 and I am curious if anyone has experience with this model rifle not necessary in this caliber. 

I have to admit, it is a very very handsome rifle, maybe more so than the coveted pre-64's. Accuracy-wise what should I expect? Anything right around MOA at 100-200 yards is perfectly fine with me. My concerns are really just based on the massive public outcry and disapproval of the push-feed era Model 70's. realistically though, I can't think of any reason why this rifle would be sub-par or even any worse than an average pre-64.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2010 at 15:47
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Chief Sackscratch

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My Post 64 70 has never failed me before I put it on steroids and now so far it hasnt' failed me since. before it was a moa gun, now sub
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2010 at 16:13
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Was yours a USRAC model or one of the newer ones with the "classic" style action. To my eyes, they look the same, but I don't know if there are any subtle differences in the design of the stock and or bedding procedures etc between 80's USRAC models and the ones that came out in the 90's called Model 70 "classic" FW. 

The one I am looking at is A featherweight XTR, Im not exactly sure what that last part designates as far as differences in the rifle.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2010 at 16:14
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Mine was purchase in the mid 90's
 
Heres what it is now


Edited by SVT_Tactical - March/02/2010 at 16:15
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2010 at 17:56
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as long as you dont buy a 2000 to when they closed the doors model you should be fine, i have had m70's from the 80's and 90's and they both were great.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2010 at 20:33
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I have heard that the new ones made in the last few years from the factory in South Carolina(?) are mean't to be pretty good. Supposedly the action they use is either similar or the same as the pre-1964 action.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2010 at 20:36
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correct, although its really just the last year till the present.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2010 at 21:28
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my model 70 I bought in '78 or '79 in 30-06 kicked so hard I got rid of it.  My Bro-in-law had a Rem 700 made about the same time and didn't kick near as hard.  It seemed like a nice rifle otherwise!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/02/2010 at 21:59
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I had a Winchester 70 XTR Featherweight in 270.  It was an Olin rifle made in 1981.  I loved it!!!  Lightweight and acccurate as hell.  Years later I saw a couple of the mid-eighties 6.5X55s but they got bought up before I could make up my mind.  One even had iron sights.   GRAB IT!!!     
 
DSCN0482.jpg image by Pete44ru
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2010 at 06:18
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Yep, i'm correct...had a look on the Winchester website...the new Model 70 is controlled round feed (C.R.F.)...like the old pre 1964 Model 70...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2010 at 06:26
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Originally posted by Tip69 Tip69 wrote:

my model 70 I bought in '78 or '79 in 30-06 kicked so hard I got rid of it.  My Bro-in-law had a Rem 700 made about the same time and didn't kick near as hard.  It seemed like a nice rifle otherwise!
 
I had an XTR Winchester ( from probably 1980......it was only a few thousand serial numbers away from my Featherweight..) and it was a 300 Win Mag.  It kicked like hell and smacked you in the face.  I had it restocked in a Classic style with a straight comb ( very much like David Miller designed for Winchester in the late nineties or 2000, or so ).  Fixed it right up!!    Thunbs Up
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2010 at 07:52
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I've got my dad's M70 XTR in 243, that he bought new in '79, and it's a sweet shooting rig.  It's like carrying a cinderblock around because of the bull barrel, but it might be the most accurate gun I have.  I'd say snatch it up.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2010 at 08:13
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Originally posted by M7025-06 M7025-06 wrote:

I've got my dad's M70 XTR in 243, that he bought new in '79, and it's a sweet shooting rig.  It's like carrying a cinderblock around because of the bull barrel, but it might be the most accurate gun I have.  I'd say snatch it up.

my dad has one just like yours, they are very accurate and great for coyotes
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2010 at 10:34
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There's nothing wrong with the push feed M70.  The issues with the 1964 change to push feed involved more than just the action change.  First, traditionalists didn't like the action change because it was viewed as potentially less "reliable," and the push vs. controlled feed debate still goes on to this day.  In reality, push feed actions are just as reliable as controlled feed actions in all but the most extreme circumstances. 

The real issues with the Post 64 M70 changes were the poor wood to metal fit, cheap looking impressed (as opposed to cut) checkering, and stylistic changes that people found objectionable.  In truth, many, if not most of the vaunted pre-64 M70's didn't have very well executed checkering, wood fit, or stock finish either.  Basically, the newer action was a simpler design, and therefore had fewer machining / manufacturing steps to make it, which meant it cost less to manufacture.  People are just resistant to change, and the original push feeds were pretty ugly rifles during their initial years before Winchester rediscovered how to make a nice looking rifle.  Traditionalists were so accustomed to how a "real" M70 should look and function, that they viewed the first push feeds as an abandonment of everything that made the M70 a good rifle.  But, that all gradually changed, and the push feed 70 evolved cosmetically until gradually, the push feed M70 regained and even surpassed the fit and finish of the pre-64 in many respects.  When the now familiar, current design "Featherweight" style stock (as opposed to a previous version they also called "Featherweight" of entirely different design) with fancy checkering pattern and Schnabel forend tip was introduced, it triggered a resurgence in the popularity of the M70 that had been lost somewhat after the 1964 redesign. 

In the late 1980's / early '90's time period, USRAC/ Winchester introduced the so-called "Classic" action, which was very similar to the pre-64, with a few enhancements to safety and functionality, along with better metallurgy.  The "Classic" is the CRF, long extractor style M70 action that lives on today, although the current FN made version has a new trigger design.  In my opinion, it is a better "pre-64" style action than the real pre-64 itself.  It is certainly safer.  The only area where the "Classic" falls behind the true "pre-64" in my opinion is maybe in feeding smoothness, as it lacked the coned breech of the original controlled round feed action.  But, that was a safety concession, so I understand why they made the change.  From what I've seen so far, the current FN version of the M70 Classic has a bit better, more consistent fit and finish on metal and wood than the USRAC versions.

The later versions of the push feed actions made in the 1980's and '90s are good rifles.  There's nothing wrong with them, as long as you happen to get a specimen that shoots well.  I personally prefer the current CRF Classic versions the best of all the M70's because there are some subtle advantages to a CRF action that I like, though I also own and like push feed actions too.


Edited by RifleDude - March/03/2010 at 10:54
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2010 at 10:58
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Very well stated Ted.  Excellent
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2010 at 11:00
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Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent Excellent
 
It's just a shame they don't come in left-handed...the price for one over here in Australia is pretty reasonable...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2010 at 11:01
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ever tried shooting a righty rifle left? Might work if the price is right.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/03/2010 at 20:58
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I own a pushfeed model 70 featherweight and would't let it go for any amount! It's a 30-06 that I put a really soft recoil pad on and bedded the complete  rifle, barrel and all. Shoots really great groups and never ever changes. I love the feel and look of this gun also. Buy the gun!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/04/2010 at 14:15
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50 Cal[ Love these things...] I bought my first Winchester Model 70 XTR in 1980(.270 Win.). I was a teenager and the guy who sold it to me new said he had it on the shelf for over a year, I got it for $285 and I put it on lay-a-way. I vagely remember hearing something about the "pre-64's" after I bought it. Anyone who used the term pre-64 was likely to follow it up with "they were better" and list the "reasons" why. I really didn't care/know what they were talking about. Now thirty years later(and three additional Model 70 XTR's), I'm kind of surprised to hear this "debate". I own .30-06 Sprfld.'s now, the .270 got stolen in 1980. I didn't hear the term "push feed" much back then, alot more now. I never had a problem with any of these rifles. I suppose all that talk of control feed vs. push feed was kind of like what "they" said about the early 60's Remington Model 700's with their " complex trigger assy.'s, receiver design." and how it would be a problem...it wasn't.  I really like the look of the XTR's and the XTR Featherweight's. They have great build quality, trigger/safety design, quality maple stocks/finish and because this "debate" continues on it will likely keep the cost of the Winchester/Western and USRAC built ones low...good(1978-'81 OLIN Winchester/Western - 1982-'89 USRAC/Winchester), bacically the same gun with some additional cartridges added/types/styles. These rifles shoot great! I've had the receivers bedded, barrels floated, triggers adjust. and Leupold 40mm 3X9 scopes installed on them. Gunsmiths are willing to do this type of thing with lends to their "keepability". I doubt many 'smiths would be willing to invest their time and efforts(and your $'s), if these were of questionable construction considering their age. I like the '06 because they are plentiful and often times in like-new condition, and the cartridge is still just as usable today as ever. And with times being what they are you may find it's versatility benificial economicly speaking. Hope you get one(or more), and this info. benifits you. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/04/2010 at 14:50
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Big Smile I have the same rifle, I got it in 2009. It was like brand new sitting on the used rifle rack at Cabela's, it still had the trigger hang tag on it, serial # says it was built in early '81. I got it for my kid , We'll just load 125gr. TNT's in it or "Plinkers" for awhile, maybe 150gr. TMJ's. I'm with you, I wouldn't give one of these XTR rifles up for nothing. I paid $600 for it plus extras(Tax/Brady/scope/base/rings/bed/barrel float/trgger adjst.), no regrets. I left the factory Pachmyer red/black recoil pad on it, if it gets to brutal to fire we'll switch to the XTR that has a Pachmyer Whiteline on it, or stay below 180gr.'s. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/04/2010 at 15:26
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Welcome to OT, Bluray!

I take it by your comments and your sig like that you're pretty fond of the .30-06!Smile
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/04/2010 at 15:52
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Originally posted by SVT_Tactical SVT_Tactical wrote:

ever tried shooting a righty rifle left? Might work if the price is right.
 
I am sssooo past that stage of my life. Big Grin
 
There's a voice in my head right now saying "get that left handed Remington SPS Varmint in .308...and then get that left handed CZ527 in .223!" Big Grin Big Grin Big Grin
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/04/2010 at 18:41
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The old Model 70s were just a rip-off Mauser action.  You could work them upside down.  The " New" Model 70s were okay......they were just a big shock if you lived in 1964 and looked at one for the first time......like I did.......    I had two of the New Post 1964 rifles and they were wonderful...............but,...... I still love the OLD ONES!!!!     Bucky
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/05/2010 at 15:31
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Got a Featherweight in 6mm Rem.  Special run in that cal. for I forget which distributor back in '93.  Was looking for one in .243 Win. when I found it.  Didn't shoot worth a cr@p when I got it.  There was a ridge in the barrel channel.  Floated the barrel that got it under 2 MOA.  Had it cryo'ed and WOW! 1st 3-shot group at 100 yds. was 0.5 MOA.  My load with Barnes 90g FBX runs between 0.5 and 0.75 MOA at 100 yds.  Daughter has confiscated it and now I'm looking for one in .243 Win. again.  Maybe should have picked up the .257 Bob the guy walking around at the gunshow in Jackson, MS was trying to sell $650 w/rings?  But I got all these 6mm/.243 bullets.  Oh well, gives me a reason to keep looking...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/06/2010 at 14:47
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I have a Model 70 XTR in 30-06 that I bought new in 1984. It's heavy but it shoots well. I some times wish I had bought a Featherweight  but I just go shoot my brothers Remington 700 Mountain Rifle in 270 and I again appreciate the heft of my M 70.
I don't see my self ever getting rid of it. I have had several other rifles in that time but have not found one that I would consider a replacement.
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