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I'm a new user so I hope this question hasn't been asked before. I was thinking about building an over under shotgun and was wondering if it would be doable and not incredibly expensive. I don't have any gunsmithing experience but I do have a good understanding of woodworking as I do it as a hobby. Have a few questions.

I was thinking I'd buy parts for the gun and then make the stock myself but haven't found much information on people doing that. Would it be possible to find a used receiver and then get a set of barrels to match it? I read replacement o/u barrels require extensive gunsmithing, is that true? I've also found it's very hard to find receivers and barrels. Has anyone done anything like this before? If so what was it like?
I realize that I would probably be better off buying a new o/u if I just needed one but I thought the idea of building one would be really cool and fun.
 

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I have 2 beretta frankinstein guns, one is a 686 the other a 682 ,both built from parts that I bought on ts.com . I am a machinist so lots of the work was e-z. I can be done.
 

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How likely is it I'll find a barrel and receiver that will match without taking it to a gunsmith? Is there a place that sells receivers and barrels? I appreciate the responses!
 

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It can be done a beretta would be the easiest to do on a budget parts are easier to find. Barrels should always be checked for headspace by a gunsmith also timing the ejectors might need to be done. Fitting a stock takes time from a blank and the bolt hole must be drilled correctly.
 

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Look on gunbroker if your serious about building one. They had side plate Italian guns in the white at one point for about 1500. Probably some over stock orders from Galazan. Make sure you post pic’s of the finished project as I’m curious how one builds wood for a gun without having a stock to be duplicated or started with. Fitting a stock to a side plate gun is a good way to test patience on a first build.
 

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I was hoping to keep costs down as much as possible but I realize it's going to take some money to do a project like this. I was hoping to find either a Beretta 680 or Winchester 101 receiver and barrels. I saw an old listing of a sold Winchester 101 receiver for $100 somewhere. I am going to try to find plans for a stock, I was told Brownells might have them. I will definitely post pictures! Thanks for everyone's responses
 

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No knowledge, no experience, want to do it on the cheap, don’t even know where to purchase parts. Sounds like a terrible accident waiting to happen. Building guns of any kind from scratch is not something that just happens. Please let us know when and where you are taking this shotgun to shoot because I would not want to be anywhere near when you do.
 

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Ther are plans to build stocks but having the right tools makes it easier to drill the bolt hole I would use a lathe a mill is great for taking extra wood out. I will see if I have my stock building prints
 

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I wasn't planning on building it from scratch. I was planning on buying a complete receiver, complete barrels from a barrel company, and having it checked by a gunsmith before assembly and after to make sure it's good to go and safe. I'd have the barrels matched to the receiver by a gunsmith unless I can find a gun that just needs to be restocked then I would probably just do that because that seems simpler. How does one get experience doing something like this?
 

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If I recall, right about the time Rags was taking Kolar into gunmaking, Jess Briley was shooting a prototype gun that he had built from scratch. Obviously decided against producing it. Good luck w/ your project.
 

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I have 2 beretta frankinstein guns, one is a 686 the other a 682 ,both built from parts that I bought on ts.com . I am a machinist so lots of the work was e-z. I can be done.
Did you buy complete parts or make them from scratch? I would like to buy a complete berreta or Winchester receiver with all the internal parts already in it, and matching barrels then have them fitted by a gunsmith and then make a stock myself. Or better yet, find a used gun for cheap that needs a new stock but is otherwise fine and make a stock myself.
 

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Ther are plans to build stocks but having the right tools makes it easier to drill the bolt hole I would use a lathe a mill is great for taking extra wood out. I will see if I have my stock building prints
Thanks, I have a lathe and a fair amount of tools in my woodshop
 

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. . . unless I can find a gun that just needs to be restocked then I would probably just do that because that seems simpler. How does one get experience doing something like this?
My opinion:

As with most everything, you get experience by starting with simple projects, learning from them, and working your way to more complex projects. Read everything you can on gunsmithing subjects.

I'm not sure what you're really attempting to do here:

1) Are you dead set on obtaining specifically an over/under shotgun, and your desire that it must be an over/under takes precedence over everything else?

2) Or, are you taking your first steps on a potential gunsmithing hobby/career? Very commendable if that's what you're trying to do. If this is the case, I recommend the following:

a) instead of beginning with "building an over/under", start with simple gunsmithing/customizing on easier guns . . . especially stock work since you said you already have woodworking experience.

b) My advice: go get yourself a used pump gun with a wood stock -- find a gun that's in need of a little work to make it look good again. Buy something like a Remington 870 or Mossberg 500, both of which have been produced in the millions, are still in production, and therefore have plenty of spare parts readily available for sale. You can gain a wealth of experience teaching yourself how to refinish the stock on a gun like that, and learn how to install a recoil pad properly . . . you'll doubtless be investing in some cool new shop tools just for this. Or, replace the stock entirely by buying a semi-inletted stock blank from a company like Wenig to learn how to fit the wood to the receiver, cut it to proper length and pitch, sand it, and apply finish . . . believe me, fitting a stock to the receiver of a pump gun is a lot easier as your first project than doing the same on a break-open gun like an over/under. After the buttstock is done, turn your attention to the slightly more difficult forearm wood (Wenig sells semi-inletted blanks for the forearm, as well). You can even attempt to make a stock from scratch if you have wood of the proper dimensions and moisture content.

c) If the pump gun needs some minor parts replaced (or even if you simply want to learn how to replace common maintenance items like firing pin, hammer spring, magazine spring), such parts on these pump guns are usually "drop in" and therefore easy to replace. While doing so, you'll learn how shotguns are constructed, how the different parts work together, and you'll soon be investing in specialized gunsmith tools by the bucket-full. Soon, you'll be on your way to becoming a serious hobby gunsmith/tinkerer, or even think about a professional gunsmith career.

Anyway, that's what I recommend instead of starting out trying to assemble a complicated gun like an over/under from parts.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
If you end up doing it, I’d love to follow along. I hand assemble (since I buy all of the parts) smokeless muzzleloaders and enjoy the process very much.
Will definitely keep everyone updated on my progress. Might take me a little time to find a receiver and barrels for the project
 

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like I said most of the parts were bought right here on ts.com. I got a nice 682 receiver and forend iron, then a pfs stock, I found a old 686 fore end in the closet, fit perfectly. I had a choice of a o/u, over single and a under single, all got on ts. I fitted them my self, piece of cake. all works good and looks good. making a stock is another story, I have helped a friend do it, it aint e-z, he was a master pattern maker, so for him it was no big deal.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
My opinion:

As with most everything, you get experience by starting with simple projects, learning from them, and working your way to more complex projects. Read everything you can on gunsmithing subjects.

I'm not sure what you're really attempting to do here:

1) Are you dead set on obtaining specifically an over/under shotgun, and your desire that it must be an over/under takes precedence over everything else?

2) Or, are you taking your first steps on a potential gunsmithing hobby/career? Very commendable if that's what you're trying to do. If this is the case, I recommend the following:

a) instead of beginning with "building an over/under", start with simple gunsmithing/customizing on easier guns . . . especially stock work since you said you already have woodworking experience.

b) My advice: go get yourself a used pump gun with a wood stock -- find a gun that's in need of a little work to make it look good again. Buy something like a Remington 870 or Mossberg 500, both of which have been produced in the millions, are still in production, and therefore have plenty of spare parts readily available for sale. You can gain a wealth of experience teaching yourself how to refinish the stock on a gun like that, and learn how to install a recoil pad properly . . . you'll doubtless be investing in some cool new shop tools just for this. Or, replace the stock entirely by buying a semi-inletted stock blank from a company like Wenig to learn how to fit the wood to the receiver, cut it to proper length and pitch, sand it, and apply finish . . . believe me, fitting a stock to the receiver of a pump gun is a lot easier as your first project than doing the same on a break-open gun like an over/under. After the buttstock is done, turn your attention to the slightly more difficult forearm wood (Wenig sells semi-inletted blanks for the forearm, as well). You can even attempt to make a stock from scratch if you have wood of the proper dimensions and moisture content.

c) If the pump gun needs some minor parts replaced (or even if you simply want to learn how to replace common maintenance items like firing pin, hammer spring, magazine spring), such parts on these pump guns are usually "drop in" and therefore easy to replace. While doing so, you'll learn how shotguns are constructed, how the different parts work together, and you'll soon be investing in specialized gunsmith tools by the bucket-full. Soon, you'll be on your way to becoming a serious hobby gunsmith/tinkerer, or even think about a professional gunsmith career.

Anyway, that's what I recommend instead of starting out trying to assemble a complicated gun like an over/under from parts.
I would like to learn about gunsmithing and do it as a hobby. As with other things I've gotten into and learned I enjoy using the things I make. If I need something and can make it I usually make it myself. The reason I chose an o/u is I would use an over under and particularly like them. I already have a Benelli Montefeltro and I have disassembled it for cleaning including the bolt and have a basic understanding of the operation of shotguns. Since I already have a semi auto I don't have a use for a pump. I wouldn't mind restocking or refinishing the stock on an old o/u and doing any basic maintenance to make it nice but I would really like to build an o/u using complete parts, my main concern is doing it safely. The biggest obstacle I've run into is finding a receiver and barrels that will match or can be matched by a gunsmith. Suggestions?
 

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Discussion Starter #20
like I said most of the parts were bought right here on ts.com. I got a nice 682 receiver and forend iron, then a pfs stock, I found a old 686 fore end in the closet, fit perfectly. I had a choice of a o/u, over single and a under single, all got on ts. I fitted them my self, piece of cake. all works good and looks good. making a stock is another story, I have helped a friend do it, it aint e-z, he was a master pattern maker, so for him it was no big deal.
Will definitely be keeping my eyes open for parts on this site! Thanks
 
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