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1939 Model 74 short and long restoration.
February 3, 2021
6:26 am
Eugene Heatwole

I am Gene and just inherited the 1939 Model 74 22 short and 22 long rifles. My great grandfather had bought them for my grandfather. Both were purchased at the same time in Wichita Kansas. My mother says they haven’t been fired since just before my grandfather served in the navy in WWll.  The 22 short is remarkably smooth to the touch. The wood has no nicks or scratches. It feels wonderful to hold. It had a 22 long jammed in it and it took me a while to extract it as I could not remove the bolt. I don’t recall a front sight that is as easy on the eyes as this model.  Once the bolt slid out I was surprised to see a perfect barrel on the inside, very surprised actually. It has the swivels where the long does not. I was so anxious to see it with a sling I took my Ruger sling and attached it just to feel it on my back. Ill have to look for a vintage slingout of respect. I’m not sure of the name of the rod that slides in the butt of the stock but it is missing. The bluing has been rubbed or sanded off the last ten inches of the barrel. Probably had a little rust at one time.I love the length of these two rifles. I would like very much to talk to someone who is enthusiastic about this model. I would also like to purchase one with the SOG configuration that wast lent to Britain if at all possible. 

The 74 long is in pretty rough shape. rusty not deep, swivels missing. stock has a few light dings. It is obvious that this was grandpas favorite. The stock is rough in my hands not as wonderfully smooth as the short. Both have serial numbers from early 1939  four digit numbers. I haven’t shot either of them yet. I want to clean them up, get all the missing parts, well there are only five missing parts. Two slings, two swivels and the rod that slides in the stock of the short. Then I’ll send them off to a gunsmith to get them looked over since they haven’t been fired since 1943. I’d sure like to chat with someone who knows what they’re talking about. If anyone has one of the 600 that was made for the British military that is for sale let me know. I want all three hanging on my wall. If I enjoy some of your company I just might register. 

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