Introduction: Install Sling Mounts for Your Rifle
Are you an avid hunter or marksman? Do you hate having your hands occupied while walking with your weapon? Well worry no more, I'm here to show you how to easily mount sling attachment swivels to your rifle, with a minimum of tools and materials.
So first off, let's lay out the tools you'll need:
Tape (I used duct tape because that is what I had, painters tape is preferable)
Bench Vise with padding (hence the tshirt)
-As always, a gun vise is preferable, but I make do with what I have.
And of course, a 1" swivel and hardware set, which can be had for under $12 at Wal-mart or your local sporting goods store
Superglue or loctite (definetely recomended)
Center punch (Optional)
Paper towels(useful as padding between the vise and the gun)
Dremel with cutting head (optional, depending on your gun. More in step 5)
Step 2: Mount Your Gun in the Vise
This step is pretty straightforward. Flip your gun upside down, with the trigger guard facing upwards. Place it gently in the bench vise with some padding around it to make sure of a good fit, and to prevent you from scratching the gun. I used paper towels for this part. We want the gun to be balanced, and the section you are working on to be as close to the center of the vise as possible, otherwise you will have a hard time keeping it steady as you drill.
Step 3: Measurements
Heres where the tricky part comes in. Measurements will vary depending on the rifle you are using. For my rifle, I placed the fore end swivel roughly 11" from the front of the trigger guard, as that was the farthest it could safely go, although the instructions for the swivel said 13"-17". For the rear swivel, I made my mark 2 1/4" from the butt plate. One good way to tell where you want your front swivel to be is to raise your rifle as if you were going to shoot. The front swivel should be at least 3/4" in front of your left hand(or right, if you area southpaw). Once you have measured with your ruler or tape to where you want to put the hole, place a small strip of tape across the stock. This will not only help you remember where you want to drill, but also will help prevent cracking and splitting of the wood as the drill bit goes in.
Step 4: Front End Installment
Important! Before you drill, you need to make one more measurement. In your kit should be two screws for mounting the swivels. The ones in my set were 1 3/16" and 7/8" respectively. The shorter one is for the front swivel mount. MAKE SURE THE SCREW IS NOT LONGER THAN THE STOCK IS DEEP! I made this mistake myself and had to go back and fix it. If you try and put too long of a screw in, you risk going all the way through the stock and hitting the barrel(or in my case, the tube magazine). The stress can not only make the rifle less accurate, but it can also crack the stock. Furthermore, it will be more likely to come out. If everything checks out, proceed to step 5. If not, keep reading
To make your screw fit, simply place it in your bench vise and cut it to the desired size with a dremel tool. Make sure not to booger up the threads while doing so, or you will be making things very hard on yourself.
Now that you have the correct length screw, we can proceed on to the next step.
Step 5: Drilling the Fore End.
Now, you are going to want to be very careful when you start drilling into the wood, as it can crack very easily. A hole punch can be handy to give your bit a place to start, or you can simply hit a drill bit lightly with a hammer to indent the wood as I did. Making sure to hold the drill as straight as possible, drill a pilot hole with your 1/16" drill bit first, to a depth of 3/8", or less, depending on step 4. Slowly work your way up to a 3/16" drill bit. A good way to keep from drilling too deep is to put a piece of tape around your drill bit at the desired depth of the hole. When the tape hits wood, you'll know it's deep enough. You may choose to counter sink the washer if you want. These sizes will, of course, change depending on what brand mounts you use.
Step 6: Drill the Rear Hole
Now, we pretty much follow the same process as before, but we will be drilling to a depth of a little over 3/4" in the stock. Again, be very slow and gradually increase the bit size.
Step 7: Installing the Screws
Now that you have the holes drilled, it's time to install the screws.
This is where I messed up. I did not go all the way up to a 3/16" bit on my first hole, and consequently cracked the stock as I tried to force the screw in. Don't be an idiot like me. Now, installing the swivel mounts are pretty easy. Place the screw in the hole, making sure to have the small washers installed if you have them. Insert a drill bit or small screwdriver into the hole in the head of the screw, and twist it until it is firmly emplaced. A few drops of loctite or even superglue beforehand can be handy here, to make sure the threads stay and don't creep out over time. When fully emplaced, the holes in the screws should be perpendicular to the barrel.
Step 8: Swivel and Sling Installation
Now, you're finally ready to install the actual swivel and rig a sling. The swivels are pretty self explanatory, just loosen the small grippy knob thing on the side of the swivel, then push it inward and twist to open the swivel. Reverse the process to attach it to the screw