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Sloppy sideplate

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Columbus

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I recently bought my first non-factory rifle. Taken me a long time to find one with a long length of pull and in my price range. I really like this gun with one exception, the work on the sideplate. I didn't see this in detail before I bought it so that's on me , but the rest of the gun is really nice - it looks like two different people did the work, one very good and one pretty sloppy. I'm not a wood worker so I've no experience to fall back on. Is the inletting issue on the sideplate fixable or is it just something I have to live with?


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Phil Coffins

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Wow! That’s well beyond my skill set to fix, but to fill some of the poor fit you could take the dust from sanding a similar piece of wood and work into the gaps then add a drop or two of finish oil to hold it in. I’m curious to see what the more talented people suggest.
 

flntlokr

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I think I would be tempted to plane the entire face off, and glue on a piece of matching veneer. Then I'd re-work that (ugly) plate to something more pleasing (or buy a new one that I like). Then re-do the inletting, or just leave the plate on the surface as some do, I prefer to do a half inlet, so the plate stands above the wood surface. You might also consider buying a pair of cake head lock screws at the same time; those look like stove bolts. I is definitely fixable.
 

Larry (Omaha)

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I recently bought my first non-factory rifle. Taken me a long time to find one with a long length of pull and in my price range. I really like this gun with one exception, the work on the sideplate. I didn't see this in detail before I bought it so that's on me , but the rest of the gun is really nice - it looks like two different people did the work, one very good and one pretty sloppy. I'm not a wood worker so I've no experience to fall back on. Is the inletting issue on the sideplate fixable or is it just something I have to live with?
There is a fix in my opinion, but not a simple one. (Make a new side plate) Remove the side plate and make an outline pattern of it on tracing paper. Now, extend any needed pattern line areas beyond the wood gaps. Some areas fit, some don't. Just make the new SP stretch were needed. Once you have the adjusted tracing done, soften or round the lines so they flow with a decent appearance. It is really not that hard to make a new one. A jewelers saw, vice, files, time, and patience will get you a new one that will correct a good portion of the bad install.
Flintlocklar 🇺🇸
 

DOUBLEDEUCE 1

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I had the same, if not worse experience. Before taking delivery on a ‘custom built’ rifle, I noted the sloppiness in the side plate. I pointed that out to the customer builder’... He ‘corrected it’ even worse. Unfortunately, it was a clear indicator of his overall lack of talent. That rifle was never fired. It no longer exists. Recycle bin and firewood. I hope yours is leaps and bounds better.
 

Flintandsteel

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It CAN be fixed. First of all, it is waaaaay too big. It’s even overhanging the panel by the barrel.
1. Remove the side plate,
2. plane the panel till inlet is gone
3. glue on a piece of similar wood
4. re-inlet new, smaller sideplate
5. refinish as needed.
its a lot of work, but totally possible.
 

hawkeye2

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Another fix and it might be the simplest would be to cover the entire panel with a sheet of brass. I've never seen that done but can't say it never happened. It might raise a bunch of questions at the range but as is I believe you'll get some comments too. If someone were nice enough to engrave the plate it might help or you might inscribe it as a presentation piece. "Presented to Private Neimah Scudder for his outstanding display of courage in saving the Regiment's rum rations at the Battle of Burnt Forest by the 79th. Regiment of Flat Foot."
 

Cattman

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easy fix. get some wood stain the same as your wood. stain some paper towels. dry. get gorilla glue and put it on the stained paper towels. put plastic wrap around your lock. put the fresh glued paper that is stained around the lock edges. press in the lock with the plastic wrap around it. let it dry a couple of days. pull out the lock sand the edges filled to match the contour. then finish with true oil or what ever. it will look perfect. have done in many many times and always looks perfect.
 

sussexmuzllodr

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Take clear packing tape place it over the brass and trace with an exacto knife. Mix some sawdust with matching stain and then with clear gorilla glue. Force into gaps let dry and sand. Remove tape. Wont look fantastic but it will look better. Works with epoxy also if you dont mind a dark halo around it.
 
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I'm more offended by the grossly oversized sideplate than I am with the inletting.
Do as Dane suggests, make or find a new,properly sized plate. Remove the old ugliness. Glue and replace the left panel. Anything is better than what's going on now.
 

toot

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I recently bought my first non-factory rifle. Taken me a long time to find one with a long length of pull and in my price range. I really like this gun with one exception, the work on the sideplate. I didn't see this in detail before I bought it so that's on me , but the rest of the gun is really nice - it looks like two different people did the work, one very good and one pretty sloppy. I'm not a wood worker so I've no experience to fall back on. Is the inletting issue on the sideplate fixable or is it just something I have to live with?


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maybe the wood shrunk over time? it rely doesn't bother me if it was my piece. as long as it shoots. it is just cosmetic. I have some that have that problem and I have learned to live with it. it ads character.JMHO.
 

toot

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why not just fashion another brass / copper plate to fit it. that would be a fast fix. no wood work to be done?
 

Columbus

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I'm more offended by the grossly oversized sideplate than I am with the inletting.
Do as Dane suggests, make or find a new,properly sized plate. Remove the old ugliness. Glue and replace the left panel. Anything is better than what's going on now.
Wish I had the skills to do that but I've never worked with wood other than rough lumber. Perhaps I can find someone in Ohio who could do the work.
 

Pete G

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Go to your local home improvement store and buy one of the wax crayons for fixing scratches and dents on furniture. Usually near the stain section.
 

RB POWELL

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I recently bought my first non-factory rifle. Taken me a long time to find one with a long length of pull and in my price range. I really like this gun with one exception, the work on the sideplate. I didn't see this in detail before I bought it so that's on me , but the rest of the gun is really nice - it looks like two different people did the work, one very good and one pretty sloppy. I'm not a wood worker so I've no experience to fall back on. Is the inletting issue on the sideplate fixable or is it just something I have to live with?


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I would suggest a new side plate. Some brass sheet, and basic tools might suffice. Anyway, I don't think it would be too hard a job.
 

Kansas Jake

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The current plate has enough material that it could be reshaped a number of different ways and be more appropriate.
 

Treestalker

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Having a blacksmith background, I would mark the edges of the plate that need fitting with a magic marker. Then I would lay the plate on a flat surface (anvil or vice plate) and gently peen the metal to expand the edges to a close fit, then re-inlet. Re-sanding the surface of the plate and surrounding wood should eliminate a lot of sins.
 
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