Remington740 / 742 / 7400
Model 740 : The Remington model 740 with a 22" barrel with a detachable 4 shot box magazine that was introduced in 1955 . This magazine was designed so that on the last shot the action remained open. In reality the only reason for this was so you could have the action open for cleaning, as in normal shooting, after the last shot, you now have to push the follower release button on the magazine allowing the bolt to go forward before you push the magazine release button to remove the empty magazine. This can be a hassle for some, so many just use the 760 magazine which is the same without the old open feature.
This model was produced initially in 30-06 and 308 calibers with 244 and 280 coming available from 1957 until this model died in 1959. The wood was plain uncheckered walnut. It had a receiver mounted pivoting bar type ejector.
There was a 740A in the product line and I suspect it was an improved modification to the original 740 that the use of the newer plunger type ejector.
Sights were dovetailed into the barrel for the rear sight,
while the front ramp was silver-soldered to the barrel and dovetailed for the
I can not find in a my reference that the
early 740s were drilled and tapped for a scope, but suspect they were. If
so, these guns being tapped for the Weaver #62 scope base. Also there was
a 740ADL which was similar to the 740A but had a checkered stock, pistol grip
cap and sling swivels. The 740BDL was similar to the ADL but had select
One problem with this firearm was that the forearm attachment
screw was a single pitch thread, pulling the forearm tight against the front of
the receiver. When firing rapidly the 2nd and 3rd shots seemed to always
climb, hence making the gun would shoot higher with each successive shot.
Williams Gunsight Co. made a aluminum spacer that went on the forearm screw and
between the metal forearm liner and the gas nozzle block, making the forearm float
at the rear.
These forearms are rather thin wood that is glued onto a sheet-metal liner as reinforcement. No factory replacement parts are available, and very few aftermarket (other than extractors and wood) are available.
For those of you that have to know what year your Remington firearm was made CLICK HERE to go to the barrel date code.
Model 742 :
The 740A was superseded the improved 742A in 1960. It was produced in 244 Rem.
(6mm Rem.), 243, 280, 30-06, and 308. The normal barrel length was 22"
carbine version that had an 18 1/2" length. The receiver was again
drilled and tapped like the later 740A guns. The checkering on the wood was a
pressed in design. It was also made in a BDL or deluxe version that
had a cheekpiece on the buttstock and basket-weave design for the checkering to
differentiate it from the ADL. This 1966 BDL had a longer flat on the top rear
of the receiver with a small flare at the rear. It was also made in a Left
Sights were improved, replacing the dovetailed barrel version
with Remington's own screw on rear sight with a
sliding dovetail ramp for elevation plus a cross dovetail for windage was
implemented. The front ramps were also screwed on.
The 742 incorporated a different forearm attachment screw which had a dual pitch thread. When installed correctly, the 2nd pitch threads pulled the forearm slightly away from the front of the receiver, (where one thread screwed into the forend cap and the other at a different pitch into the gas block) creating basically a free floating forearm, making for more accurate shots after the barrel warmed up.
The 742 has an improved bolt system incorporating a bolt
latch system, which is a small thin lock that holds the bolt head from rotating
out of battery while it is traveling rearward and forward during cycling.
In Feb. 1977, date code (LO), on the 742 and 760, the barrel threads were changed from RH to LH, to help stop the problem of the barrel extension (locking lugs) from unscrewing from the barrel during the firing cycle. This date code is shown below in the gunsmithing section.
No factory replacement parts
(other than 7400 magazines and magazine latches), and very few aftermarket
(other than extractors, firing pins and wood) are available.
|Remington 742 BDL post 1966 gun with the stepped receiver|
Gunsmithing These Models : These firearms are now obsolete and if you contact Remington, they will say they don't have any parts. As a matter of fact they don't even have the part numbers in their parts computer system anymore or if they do, the part number does not reference to these fitting 740/742 models.
the gun is unloaded, use a long punch, tap our both the 2 cross pins
holding this unit in the receiver. It should then come right out
the bottom. Now you can manually cock the hammer, with the
safety off, try to simulate your problem. You could find
something restricting either the trigger from being pulled (safety) or
movement of the sear to disengage the hammer.
If it is
in the safety, there is a small cross pin in the metal housing above the
safety, This pin only holds the spring and either a ball bearing or
plunger (depending on vintage). Drive it out, carefully remove the
spring and plunger. Now the safety itself can be removed. REMEMBER
WHICH WAY IT CAME OUT. Clean, oil with a light oil (NOT WD-40) blow
all the excess off the internal parts, then reinstall.
In operation on these 742 models, as the bolt moves out of
battery the bolt latch locks the rotating bolt head, keeping it from rotating.
This latch lies in a slot in the bolt body. The front of the latch
has a downward angled front ear that goes into a recess. Directly
behind this front angled recess is a small hole the dia. of the slot.
There is a spring loaded (.087dia.) pivot pin that goes into this hole with a
spring under it. This pin has one rounded end. This
rounded end goes UP to act as a pivot for the latch. There is also
another hole in the rear of the slot. The pin that goes into this
slot also has a spring under it. But this plunger has BOTH ends
square, as the upper end acts as a retainer against a square matching notch in
the underside of the latch. However sometimes the rear plunger does
not have enough tension to really hold the latch in position during cycling.
|Remington 742 bolt latch #16988|
Remington’s solution was to drop a #7 ½ lead shot pellet into this rear plunger hole before you put the spring in. This increased the tension and improved operation. Many of the 742 parts are now obsolete, this plunger being one, so if you make a new plunger out of .087 dia. drill rod, make it .280 overall length, you will have done the same as installing the lead shot as a spacer under the spring. You may well try the spring and your new plunger in the assembled unit before you install them in the firearm, as if there is any debris in the hole or a slightly short hole, the latch may not be depressed far enough to allow the bolt carrier to depress the latch far enough, so you may have to shorten it. Or if it is one that the factory or a gunsmith who attended one of the last seminars where this tidbit of information was passed on, the hole may be shorter already where it may be hard to get the lead shot out without drilling.
The first thing I would look at if a feeding problem seems to be the culprit, is the magazine. Feeding problems on these series of models can many times be traced to the magazine as with any semi-auto. Here the average hunter is more likely to leave the magazine loaded even when the gun is put away. Also the magazines will have been carried in a pocket where lint, twigs, dirt etc. can accumulate. With this debris internally the live round can be restricted as it tries to feed up into the chamber, possibly causing a malfunction. Also they can have became sat on, squashed so as to not allow the follower to come all the way up. You notice I do not use the word “Jam”, as it is so broad a term that it is essentially useless when relating a firearm malfunction.
The followers from these semi-auto magazines will tax your imagination and patience to remove, then reconnect them back onto the trip latch. I would suggest that to clean the internal parts of one of these, that either you soak it in solvent, blow it out with compressed air at the same time depressing the follower. Or if you do disassemble one to get it clean, pay close attention to how it came apart.
The next to look at would be are reloads being used? Reloads are not bad, BUT the reloader needs to be WELL aware of proper sizing for semi-autos. This is completely different than for bolt action guns. A small base die needs to be used that sizes the WHOLE body back to original factory specs. Also if a crimp is used on the case, it will have to be trimmed accordingly so there is no bulge at the neck. This reloaded case MUST fall into the chamber. Also it is advisable to only reload them to be used for hunting 2 or maybe 3 times. As with this small base resizing will work the base which can create a case head separation of the brass after a few loadings. You can reload them more, but use these multi loaded ones for target practice. Believe me it is rather helpless seeing an animal you just hit, but did not go down, then run off with you holding a useless firearm. You have a case head separation in your gun and about all you can do in the field is to just can stand there with your finger in your nose.
Another thing to look at if you reload is that the pressure
level has to be near the factory otherwise the bolt will not cycle enough to
eject. Read the reloading manual and try to pick a load at least in
the mid range.
You guys that say "I have reloaded for 30 years, therefore I know what I am doing" does not mean a thing if it has NOT been for semi-autos that the reloader is not in turn using this ammo themselves. Hell, I have been eating food for 77 years, but that does not make me a cook.
Another problem with these guns is that the chambers tend to get rusty. These extractors are a light metal "C" type clip with a small hole on one end that is used with a rivet to anchor it into the bolt head, and on the other side of this extractor there is a slight protrusion that has a sharp rear edge that acts as the extraction point.
At first the rusty chamber situation may just cause extraction problems. Then since things do not improve by themselves, the extractor may get bent and not be as efficient as it should be.
As things worsen, the gun can malfunction by not pulling the case from the chamber because of the internal rust in the chamber gripping the fired case and or the faulty extractor. If the rust job gets bad enough so the case is really stuck, the bolt will come back with enough force that it can rip the lips of the bolt face off. This then leaves no metal to hold the extractor into the bolt head. You now can have a really stuck fired case and a broken bolt head.
In the pictures below the barrel was almost ruined by
neglect. The bore was bad also when I got the gun, but it was firing
and extracting, much to my dismay. I was able to salvage this gun, by
polishing the chamber with crocus cloth, fire lapping the bore, and the gun is
still in service today.
|A 7400 with a rusty chamber||Obviously someone used this one in a rainstorm & neglected to clean it, look at the rust on the spring guide rod|
A GOOD gunsmith/welder can weld the broken lips of the bolt, re-machine it back and reinstall a new extractor. If the chamber rust is not too bad it can be polished out with fine emery cloth wound around a slotted flexible shaft mounted in a 1/4" drill motor. It has been discussed on some message boards to not do this because it will change the headspace. Bull Shit. Well, the gun is somewhat ruined now, whatever you do to get it operational makes it better than it was. Sure you may have made a slight change in the chamber, but using this method, you can not remove an excess amount. Also do not believe any BS you hear about the chamber HAS TO BE slightly rough. Look at any new semi-auto and you will see a very smooth chamber. If it is somewhat rough, the extractor will indeed pull chunks off the case rim leaving the fired case in the chamber OR it will rip the bolt lips off that hold the extractor in place in the bolt. The roughness idea may have come from a retarded blowback pistol, which this is NOT THE CASE HERE.
After many years of pondering why these guns were plagued
with this rust case phenomena and not the makes or models of others, the following answer
finally came to me. It was the dedicated, hunt in the cold/rain,
deer/elk hunters that seemed to have the majority of the problems.
The sunshine hunters appear to not have any problems.
In the Pacific Northwest, elk season is later in the year when the weather is nasty, cold, rain, sleet and blowing. Also here the brush, replanted young trees, along with thick timber, so the hunters usually get out in the brush in the morning, get wet and cold, and then drive around on logging roads in the afternoon to dry out, in hopes of see animals that some other hunters have put on the move. In the state of Washington, a loaded firearm in the vehicle is illegal, so they unload the gun, remove the magazine, rest the muzzle on the floor possibly between the 2 hunters or in a gun rack for quick access.
This could also happen in a very humid climate.
In the colder weather if the gun is brought into a warm vehicle, the barrel will condense water on the inside, since the
action is spring loaded and has no means of being held open without an empty
magazine inserted, the average owner simply leaves it closed. The
gun has gotten wet and COLD, now it is subject to a forced HOT air from the
heater, in this close proximity to heat, the COLD steel condenses moisture on
both sides of the steel. With the bolt forward under spring pressure,
with the muzzle down, when the barrel warms up the inside has condensation, this
rises, and is trapped inside the chamber. But this moisture inside has no place
to go because the bolt is closed.
If the drive home is long enough and/or the firearm stays there
long enough, the outside condensation will dry off. At the end of the day,
he then takes it home, may stand it in the corner to dry off. The
condensed water inside of the barrel, then runs down, collects in the chamber
area. Then possibly the gun MAY see an oily cleaning patch run thru
the bore but the chamber is usually missed because it is missed by the patch and
also out of sight. This is not an area that
the average hunter will even see if he runs a cleaning rag thru the barrel.
Usually the bolts are closed on most firearms when being stored.
This also traps any moisture inside the chamber. The gun is set away
with the bolt closed until the next year with the owner thinking that they have
done the right thing. The end result is a RUSTY chamber that we
seen MANY, MANY times, but did not understand what may have happened.
One of the most common problems with the Remington 740 and 742 is that after much use the receiver rails will get worn. These rails guide the bolt lugs on the movement both rearward and forward. The receiver is made of a soft metal since the bolt lugs engage the rear of the barrel for a positive lockup. The receiver simply holds the parts together.
This movement is under gas pressure on the rearward movement and spring pressure on the forward movement. At the rearward stop position the inertia of this bolt lug exerts extra pressure caming it against the receiver rail slot, pounding them enough that this rail gets worn. There is a bolt latch on the 742 (this latch was not on the 740), this latch is supposed to lock the bolt head into the bolt carrier to help keep the front from over-rotating at the most rearward inertia's movement, but after wear on all parts, things seem to get sloppy and do not function as intended.
When this happens the bolt lugs, now slightly out of time, having been moving back and forth, may also chew up the front of the rails. Then the bolt carrier and lugs can get bound up, then in extreme circumstances actually stop the bolt unit from cycling when the gun is fired, or binding it on the return stroke enough to stop it before it completely closes.
Under some circumstances the operating handle may drag, usually on the bottom of the receiver slot that the handle operates in. If this happens it is usually related to the above rail problem.
Since there are no new receivers available and the only used ones could be questionable in that may possibly be worn also, A GOOD gunsmith/welder/machinist familiar with firearms can usually salvage the receiver by welding the worn rails with a special long nozzled wire feed or heliarc welder. This receiver can then be re-machined to factory or tighter dimensions on a vertical mill using special long cutters. This is not a job for the average "gunsmith" however.
If you have to take the barrel extension off to do any rechambering or rebarreling you will need to make a barrel extension wrench. This extension is actually the barrel's locking lugs. It is threaded and timed to the barrel so that the extension is indexed so the sights, barrel lug are all indexed for bolt lockup, headspace so everything where it should be. There is not any commercially available fixtures available to remove these extensions. If you try to use any other method, you will about 99% be assured of breaking the extension. However here is a picture of the one I made.
|Remington barrel extension removal tool|
In the above photo, the inner slider is made to fit inside the barrel locking lugs. The 3/8" bolt locks the slider to the base. The bolt hole is also aligned with the barrel lug attachment bolt hole. In use, for removal the base is inserted over the barrel lug extension, the slider is then slid endwise into the lug recess. The bolt is inserted in just far enough to lock these 2 parts together, but not into the main barrel lug for removal. Mark the relationship of the barrel to the barrel lug with a scribe mark on layout die. This will allow you to reinstall it in the same position.
Now Remington changed the threads at barrel date code
from RH to LH to
facilitate the extension not being backed off when used on the semi-auto guns.
This will determine which direction, when you try to remove it from from the
can now put the barrel in a barrel vise, rap the removal handle sharply with a
3# hammer, in the proper
direction, then unscrew the extension off the barrel. These extensions are usually on
tight and require force to remove even after the initial bond is broken.
Once it is off, if the barrel lug is stubborn and resists, you may screw the
extension back on part way, do it over again but with the 3/8" bolt thru the
barrel lug to take both off at the same time.
The picture below of a fired 30-06 Winchester factory round
that was fired in a early 742, barrel code (CM) that the RH threaded barrel
extension had became loose, unthreaded as the case was being extracted.
As luck would have it, the bullet exited the barrel in time to relieve pressure
while the case was still somewhat in the chamber. You may notice a slight
crease in the body behind the shoulder where this case upon being ejected was
dented as it was going out and hit the ejection port of the receiver.
|Comparison of a normal round & the lengthened case|
Remington has also discontinued making extractors for these guns, #14669 which was 30-06 size riveted type and are the same that had been used on the 700, 740, 742, 760, 788. These extractors are riveted into the bolt, require a special rivet and tool to install. The rivet tool and extractors are currently available from Brownells in Iowa 1-800-471-0015.
Bolt latches are also factory discontinued, but are being
currently made by Wisner's Inc. Bolt heads are non existent, except from
cannibalized guns, but by the time a gun has enough worn parts to warrant
cannibalization, they too are usually worn or broken.
Magazine latches are also obsolete. However the latch off the newer 7400 series can be used if the new spring is also used.
Firing pins also are obsolete, however I think Pennsylvania Gun Parts is having them made. Aftermarket manufacturers like Uncle Mikes make sling swivel kits to fit these guns.
Buttstock wood is the SAME and interchangeable for all of the Models 740, 742, #4, #6, 74, 7400, 7600. The factory will not tell you this, but they will all interchange. The finish or checkering will not match your original one however. But at this stage of the game, you will more than likely have to take what you can find.
Forearms are a different matter. All 740, 742 forearms are now obsolete, however if you replace the complete forearm, front metal plate, spacer, and the screw, then the current 7400 will fit.
Sights have changed many times over the years. If yours is one of the early guns (740) with a 3/8" dovetail, any aftermarket 3/8" sight, both front & rear will fit. If your barrel has the sights screwed onto it like the 742s, you loose part of the rear sight, you might be best to try to get a whole new one for the 7400 or even the 700 series, as the screw holes are all the same spacing. The rear screw on sight has been changed 3 times and parts for the early versions are no longer available from the factory.
About all the newer type pump and semi-auto guns, whether they be rimfire, centerfire or
shotgun use many of the same basic “Fire Control” (as Remington calls the trigger
group) parts. This would be the 552, 572, for the RF, 740, 742, 760, 4, 6,
74, 76 7400 and 7600 for the CF. 11-48, Sportsman 48, 870, 58, 878, 1100, and the
11-87 in the shotguns. They are only supplied in Right Hand from the
factory. You can not simply reverse the RH to make it function as a LH
For many years there were aftermarket Left Hand replacement triggers available from sources like Williams Gunsight Co., Uncle Mikes, Herters, etc. However for some reason these companies dropped production. The guess is that if THEY sold you a replacement safety and YOU installed it improperly, that they were responsible legally because they SHOULD HAVE KNOWN that someone could also done something else wrong inside the “Fire Control” unit at the same time, creating a unsafe situation These companies also felt threatened by lawyers to the effect that they were making a product that altered the factory design.
You might find some enterprising machine shop that may possibly be making some
LH safeties, but in all probability they too, would not be advertising it to any
degree, because of the possible liability involved.
Remington supplied some of the trigger guard units drilled with 2 different
safety plunger detent holes so that YOU could simply interchange the RH to
LH. They even supplied a detailed drawing of this placement of the
hole so gunsmiths could do it. However they later found that beings as how this
made of a aluminum casting, that
over time the THIN web between these 2 holes was prone to breaking, then the
safety would not function as designed. More liability, so this whole
idea was apparently abandoned.
Failure to eject after a scope was mounted is a situation that can also be encountered. The usual problem here is that the scope base mounting screws may be too long, dragging on the bolt lugs upon firing.
The factory has no cross-reference to the 742 parts
interchangeability, if a gunsmith orders the 742 part number, the order will
come back saying -- discontinued--. This is very hard to understand
in this computer day and age, but the factory service department underwent a total
restructuring, moved to the southern US. The old people who knew
anything were let go, so the new people either do not know, or were told to not
offer information that some of the new parts will fit. It is
the belief that the factory does not want 740 and 742's repaired, therefore the
above information seems to be more valid. They want you to by a new
There was a factory upgrade at one time, where you sent your
non-repairable 740 or 742 back to the factory, that they would exchange it for a
new 7400 for the wholesale price. This however was more than the original
gun was worth even in excellent shape. This program has now been
The factory even can not cross-reference the buttstock bolts,
saying the older ones are obsolete. But the 870, 7400/7600 stock bolts will
For Remington factory date codes CLICK HERE
It seems that old guns are like many of us, in that just don't know when to give up. Sometimes however it is better to just let the old gun die.
Model 4 / 7400 :
There may have been some confusion with the other Remington #4, which was a
Rolling Block single shot rimfire rifle that Remington made from 1890 to 1933.
When Remington dropped the 742, in 1981 they came out in 1982 with the newer internal design semi-auto, while still maintaining the same exterior configuration. It was designated model 4, and the model 7400. The calibers available were 6mm Rem. (discontinued in 1987) 243, 270, 280, 30-06, 308, and 35 Whelen. A carbine in 30-06 was introduced in 1988. The extractor was changed from the riveted in style, common with the 740, 742 and the bolt action 700 to a non-riveted snap in type. This new style extractor was also incorporated into the model 700 bolt action gun. But the 4/7400 utilized a slightly heavier/stronger version extractor than the bolt action guns.
The model 4 was the deluxe version (or as the earlier 742 was
designated, it would have been equal to a BDL grade). The model 4
had high gloss checkered walnut wood with white line spacers under the
buttplate, grip cap and forearm tip. The model 7400 which was the same
gun, except plainer wood, satin finish, pressed checkering (would have been
equivalent to the ADL).
In the spring of 1982 at a dealer show, the Remington factory sales reps told us (independent dealers) that "they" were advertising for the independent dealer AND promoting the model 4 in all national sports magazines. They did not tell us that there was also being made an economy model 7400. We found out later in the early fall after we got our shipment of model 4s, that Remington had sold the 7400s to K-Mart, Wal-Mart etc. at a greatly reduced price as compared to the Model 4 that they were selling us. The retail customer was not dumb, as he could buy a new Remington semi-automatic 30-06 from the "marts" for $100 less than we were charging, he did not care what it looked like, only the price, and was very discontent that we could not match their (the Marts) discounted price for our higher grade guns. The situation was that the "marts" ordered only the 30-06 calibers, and the customer could not understand why we could not sell them a 270 Winchester caliber for the same price the marts wanted for their 30-06. We were therefore stuck with higher priced guns on our shelves.
Then in 1983 Remington acknowledged and then had the 7400s in their sales catalog. The independent shop owners had to then buy the model 7400's to stay even somewhat competitive. So the model 4's sat on our shelves and at the factory warehouse. It took the factory a few years to figure out what was going on.
As time went on, new versions appeared including synthetic
stocked models with glass-beaded dull metal finish, even a Electoless nickel
finish on the metal.
Model 74 : Then later, about 1985 there was an even cheaper model, the Model 74, again made in 30-06 only, which took the place of the then "older" 7400, but with cheaper walnut stained birch wood, with no checkering. The metal finish did not have the higher luster of the 7400. Now the "marts" could again under-price us because we again did not know about these 74s. These guns also carried Remington's economy name of "Sportsman".
In 1987 Remington then phased out the model 4, then soon, the Model 7400 started showing up with the better wood previously found on the Model 4. So in essence the two above guns (model 4 and 7400) are the same except the wood and period of manufacture.
Magazines for the 740, 742, model 4, 7400, 74 are all the same and are interchangeable.
The models 4,74,7400 were designed with 3 larger locking
lugs, a slightly cone shaped barrel breech for better feeding, a hardened rail
insert in the top of the receiver to guide the upper locking lug, eliminating
the possibility of the receiver rails being ruined. The scope base
mounting holes were changed and increased in size from the normal 6-48 to 8-40
size. The firing pin was redesigned. The trigger group
remained basically the same with the exception of a larger magazine release
About 2002 the magazine tooling wore out and there was only
one company that was able, or wanted to do the deep drawing required for this
operation. This company made and owned the tooling under the
original contract, but when it wore out, they opted not to continue making the magazines for
Remington then had MecGar make new replacement magazines out of 2 pieces with
the bottom of nylon attached to the sides instead of a single drawn magazine.
However the new magazines may require fitting to the older guns.
Model 750 :
The year 2006 saw the Model 750 replacing the wood-stocked Model 7400 versions
and features a restyled American walnut fore-end and stock with machine-cut
checkering. And was
also available in a brushed stainless type finish. It later came out with
a black synthetic stock. It comes supplied with factory sling swivel
The factory advertisement says felt recoil is diminished by its ultra-efficient gas action (what ever that is) and the addition of a revolutionary R3® recoil pad. It is supposed to have a better self-compensating gas system. My guess was that they changed the gas nozzle shape so that it dissipates the gasses better as the action bars move the attached gas block rearward. And/or they possibly just chrome plated parts of the 7400 gas system and are calling it improved. However I recently received some further information that he had gotten direct from Remington "The model 750 uses a different gas block system. The 74 series of rifles used a 90 degree gas port system. The model 750 uses an angled system inside the gas block. "
OK, I'm close, as this could result in a slightly different cyclic rate using a different gas bleed off method.
This model appears to me to be a regeneration of the earlier Model 4 as a deluxe
model with a more beaver-tailed forearm.
|Remington model 750|
Copyright © 2006 - 2014 LeeRoy Wisner All Rights Reserved
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Originated 10-17-06 Last updated
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