Parker Hale M82 Clone

merrildog

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New old member here. I have been away from the Hide for about 10 years, and feel it's time to get back to some precision projects now that the kids are gone! I always wanted a Parker-Hale M82, but, they are un-obtanium, and when one pops up, they are super expensive. So, I have planned to build a "clone" for some time, so here goes. I found Old West Scrounger had M81 "cadet" stocks available. The profile is the same as the M82, but they are single shot, and use a different accessory rail. I bought a couple to play with. Pro's, they have the internal magazine outlined for in-letting and are beautiful Walnut stocks made by Parker Hale, with spacers and a recoil pad. Cons, as mentioned above, different accessory rail (Anschultz style versus the PH threaded rail), no internal magazine, and as they were single shot, large round recesses for excrussions. I plan to inlet the magazine well, and found a PH accessory rail for the Cadet stock, which will be , not quite right, but, is what it is. I started searching for a large ring commercial 98 action, and decided to use a Zestava action for the project. I found a good one in 30-06 on gunbroker, and pulled the trigger. A day later, three nos, in the white Santa Barbra actions came up for sale. Santa Barbra produced the commercial actions for PH. To much to resist, bought one. I also scrounged a set of PH 22 and 28 scope bases, and found two brand new RAHS3 scope rings in 1 inch. I plan to go with a 10 power fixed Bushnell 1 inch scope. The M82 used the RALS3, but the high rings will work with my scope. I sent the Santa Barbra action to my smith, who advised me it was actually a magnum action, and would need the bolt face welded up if I was going to run .308 through it. As I also had the Zastava action, I had him swap bolts, true the lugs and bolt face, and she will work fine for .308. This leaves me with the Zastava machined action, which now has a magnum bolt in it. Next build, .404 Jeffery Safari rifle... Last is the barrel. I had McGowan Precision build a 26 inch 1-12 twist on the M82/1200TX profile. Barrel arrived, and is a thing of beauty. Time to put all of this stuff together into a rifle.
PH-1.jpg
 

Random Guy

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Good luck with that build, that is a challenging project to undertake, and glad you were able to gather up all those parts.
 

Halfnutz

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    So if I'm not mistaken is that left hand twist?

    A friend has PH he got from his father and I mentioned LH twist. Both him and his dad were surprised at this.

    "Well shit, it is LH!" Was the reaction I think.
     

    merrildog

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    I don't know about the left hand twist. McGowan cut mine right hand. I'll have to look into that.
     

    merrildog

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    Where did you find the PH rings? I’m after a set of RCH4s but they seem rather than rocking horse s***!
    Ebay stalking. They pop up now and then. I found the RAHS new in the box, had probably been sitting on a shelf somewhere since the 70's. I found a second set a couple weeks later. The box is actually a small work of art. No bubble packs, inked cardboard. "Another fine aid from Parker-Hale"!
    I see there is a set of RCH4 rings for sale in England, 130 pounds!
     
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    sandwarrior

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    New old member here. I have been away from the Hide for about 10 years, and feel it's time to get back to some precision projects now that the kids are gone! I always wanted a Parker-Hale M82, but, they are un-obtanium, and when one pops up, they are super expensive. So, I have planned to build a "clone" for some time, so here goes. I found Old West Scrounger had M81 "cadet" stocks available. The profile is the same as the M82, but they are single shot, and use a different accessory rail. I bought a couple to play with. Pro's, they have the internal magazine outlined for in-letting and are beautiful Walnut stocks made by Parker Hale, with spacers and a recoil pad. Cons, as mentioned above, different accessory rail (Anschultz style versus the PH threaded rail), no internal magazine, and as they were single shot, large round recesses for excrussions. I plan to inlet the magazine well, and found a PH accessory rail for the Cadet stock, which will be , not quite right, but, is what it is. I started searching for a large ring commercial 98 action, and decided to use a Zestava action for the project. I found a good one in 30-06 on gunbroker, and pulled the trigger. A day later, three nos, in the white Santa Barbra actions came up for sale. Santa Barbra produced the commercial actions for PH. To much to resist, bought one. I also scrounged a set of PH 22 and 28 scope bases, and found two brand new RAHS3 scope rings in 1 inch. I plan to go with a 10 power fixed Bushnell 1 inch scope. The M82 used the RALS3, but the high rings will work with my scope. I sent the Santa Barbra action to my smith, who advised me it was actually a magnum action, and would need the bolt face welded up if I was going to run .308 through it. As I also had the Zastava action, I had him swap bolts, true the lugs and bolt face, and she will work fine for .308. This leaves me with the Zastava machined action, which now has a magnum bolt in it. Next build, .404 Jeffery Safari rifle... Last is the barrel. I had McGowan Precision build a 26 inch 1-12 twist on the M82/1200TX profile. Barrel arrived, and is a thing of beauty. Time to put all of this stuff together into a rifle.View attachment 7387563
    I wanted to start my own thread on this but you beat me to it😁
    F22942EE-DBE3-4367-BF95-92F163FCFC9F.jpeg
    A3512C07-90C1-4DA8-BC85-7D862FF59A95.jpeg

    I did like you did and started with the M81 cadet stock. My action is a ...can’t remember right now... I’m at the beer tasting room, M98 of some kind with the crest ground off. Cork Soakers! I got it cheap, but the barrel is a Parker Hale. You might see the profile in the barrel in the sunshine shot.

    Anyhow, it looks mid-fifties to mid seventies. The scope is a Unertl 4X Hawk. Not used for military that I know of but it looks that way. It looks all snipery, but in truth it’s an “across the decades” idea of a useful sniper rifle of days gone by, but past WWII.
     
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    merrildog

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    Which action do you think is higher quality Zastava vs SB? @merrildog @sandwarrior
    The Zastava is machined, where the SB is cast, so the strength goes to the Zastava. Apparently in the lower pressure rounds, the SB is just dandy, but most builders won't use them in magnum cartridges. The SB is a pretty little thing, and I'm fine with using it on the .308, and switching out the Zastava bolt so I wouldn't have to modify the larger magnum SB bolt face. From what I have read, the Zastava actions are brutal, which is why I'm using it for next years .404 Jeffery project.
     
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    merrildog

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    I wanted to start my own thread on this but you beat me to it😁View attachment 7388071View attachment 7388072
    I did like you did and started with the M81 cadet stock. My action is a ...can’t remember right now... I’m at the beer tasting room, M98 of some kind with the crest ground off. Cork Soakers! I got it cheap, but the barrel is a Parker Hale. You might see the profile in the barrel in the sunshine shot.

    Anyhow, it looks mid-fifties to mid seventies. The scope is a Unertl 4X Hawk. Not used for military that I know of but it looks that way. It looks all snipery, but in truth it’s an “across the decades” idea of a useful sniper rifle of days gone by, but past WWII.
    Feel free to jump in, I'm trial and erroring this thing!!
     

    sandwarrior

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    Does your stock have the circle inletted where the bottom metal would overlap the rail?

    I didn’t quite know what to do with that. I think I’ll dig the bedding out there and see if I can’t carve some half-disks to fill that.

    And, get a template to inlet he bottom. I’ve gotta add filler. Different shape on one side of the bottom metal to the other. PITA inletting if your action is not a SB. All the stupid little corners and what not are different than the basic Ph inlet.
     

    merrildog

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    Does your stock have the circle inletted where the bottom metal would overlap the rail?

    I didn’t quite know what to do with that. I think I’ll dig the bedding out there and see if I can’t carve some half-disks to fill that.

    And, get a template to inlet he bottom. I’ve gotta add filler. Different shape on one side of the bottom metal to the other. PITA inletting if your action is not a SB. All the stupid little corners and what not are different than the basic Ph inlet.
    That was my second step. I got my action inletted, and sent the barrel and receiver off today to have the barrel installed. The big circles presented a little head scratching, but I decided to find a hole saw with the ID close to the escrution holes. I pulled the spacers off the but, as they are made of similar wood, and cut a couple plugs out of the middle. Mixed up some wood glue and left over sawdust, and glued them in. Filed and sanded them down, and now it is time to cut in the magazine. My action was not a drop in, unfortunately. I had to take out quite a bit of the stupid little corners to make way for bedding compound. The action set up pretty high in the stock, but looks better now.
    PH-3.jpg
    PH-2.jpg
     
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    Forgetful Coyote

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    The Zastava is machined, where the SB is cast, so the strength goes to the Zastava. Apparently in the lower pressure rounds, the SB is just dandy, but most builders won't use them in magnum cartridges. The SB is a pretty little thing, and I'm fine with using it on the .308, and switching out the Zastava bolt so I wouldn't have to modify the larger magnum SB bolt face. From what I have read, the Zastava actions are brutal, which is why I'm using it for next years .404 Jeffery project.
    You also building the .404 yourself? Any plans for Africa?
     

    ddavis

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    I have an M82 stock and a Parker Hale hunting type rifle but that's as far as I've got. I REALLY want the iron sight set up and have the front but the rear is near impossible to find. I also can't seem to find the right scope bases for this rifle. I think it's just a Parker Hale 1200. I ordered some bases that were supposed to fit it but they don't.

    You'd be jealous if you saw the stock I got from Old Western Scrounger. I'll post a pic later if I remember to.

    -Dan
     
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    merrildog

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    I have an M82 stock and a Parker Hale hunting type rifle but that's as far as I've got. I REALLY want the iron sight set up and have the front but the rear is near impossible to find. I also can't seem to find the right scope bases for this rifle. I think it's just a Parker Hale 1200. I ordered some bases that were supposed to fit it but they don't.

    You'd be jealous if you saw the stock I got from Old Western Scrounger. I'll post a pic later if I remember to.

    -Dan
    Numerich has the #22 and #28 bases in stock. They are about 7 bucks apiece. Which rings did you get?
     

    sandwarrior

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    That was my second step. I got my action inletted, and sent the barrel and receiver off today to have the barrel installed. The big circles presented a little head scratching, but I decided to find a hole saw with the ID close to the escrution holes. I pulled the spacers off the but, as they are made of similar wood, and cut a couple plugs out of the middle. Mixed up some wood glue and left over sawdust, and glued them in. Filed and sanded them down, and now it is time to cut in the magazine. My action was not a drop in, unfortunately. I had to take out quite a bit of the stupid little corners to make way for bedding compound. The action set up pretty high in the stock, but looks better now.
    View attachment 7388347View attachment 7388346
    Also, as what you can see, this birch stained to look like dark walnut. I suggest getting the darkest walnut (added: stain) you can, as a 'natural' that I didn't have on hand, left the stained wood very light.
     
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    merrildog

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    Magazine starting to sink into the stock. I drilled out the bulk of the material to be removed, then took it down close to my scribe marks with a router. The rest of the work is with files and chisels. Working at a snails pace, as I don't want to screw it up. Wood glue was a poor choice to secure my plugs. They popped out. Put them back with epoxy.
    ph-6.jpg
    ph-5.jpg
     

    sandwarrior

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    Magazine starting to sink into the stock. I drilled out the bulk of the material to be removed, then took it down close to my scribe marks with a router. The rest of the work is with files and chisels. Working at a snails pace, as I don't want to screw it up. Wood glue was a poor choice to secure my plugs. They popped out. Put them back with epoxy. View attachment 7391694View attachment 7391698
    I love the hoof trimmer rasp! They come in "handy handy" when you gotta remove a big face like the side of a magazine box and you've still got an 8th" to go. :rolleyes: :rolleyes:
     
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    merrildog

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    I love the hoof trimmer rasp! They come in "handy handy" when you gotta remove a big face like the side of a magazine box and you've still got an 8th" to go. :rolleyes: :rolleyes:
    That is my go-to wood working tool! I have lots of metal working tools, wood working, not so much. Because I suck at it, measure twice, cut once, throw it away, cut again, swear....
     
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    Random Guy

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    Found a decent color pic of an M82 in a book I have. Good luck with these builds, that conversion requires a lot of wood work...
     

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    merrildog

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    Magazine is pretty much in. Waiting now for the barreled action to come back, and finish the in-letting and bed it. I might need to sink the magazine a tiny bit more, depending on what my magazine to action gap looks like. The rear tang of the of the trigger guard is quite a ways below the level of the stock, so I think I will thin the bottom of the pistol grip a bit to make it look smoother. My plugs popped out for a second time. Epoxy was also a poor choice. JB weld for the win.
    PH5.jpg
    PH6.jpg
    PH 7.jpg
     

    sandwarrior

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    I'm glad you're taking pics of this. I was having fits with the gaps, then realizing they were gonna be there no matter what because my action and bottom metal were not the same shape. I still have to fill them in, but got all wound up and had to go shoot it!

    Added: The Gorilla wood glue was my ticket. I did bed the rifle with JB Weld. 😜
     

    merrildog

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    I'm glad you're taking pics of this. I was having fits with the gaps, then realizing they were gonna be there no matter what because my action and bottom metal were not the same shape. I still have to fill them in, but got all wound up and had to go shoot it!

    Added: The Gorilla wood glue was my ticket. I did bed the rifle with JB Weld. 😜
    JB weld and duct tape could repair the earth. I have fixed cracked cylinder heads with the stuff.
     

    YF12A

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    Duct tape is Ok, but please try the Gorilla tape, this stuff is Super Duty!
     

    sandwarrior

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    Best of luck! I stupidly let an M82 get away from me in the early '90's when nobody really knew anything about them.
    I feel your pain... I had a chance at one for what was then kind of stiff money, I thought, in the early 2000's. Nope, let it go!
     

    merrildog

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    I have an M82 stock and a Parker Hale hunting type rifle but that's as far as I've got. I REALLY want the iron sight set up and have the front but the rear is near impossible to find. I also can't seem to find the right scope bases for this rifle. I think it's just a Parker Hale 1200. I ordered some bases that were supposed to fit it but they don't.

    You'd be jealous if you saw the stock I got from Old Western Scrounger. I'll post a pic later if I remember to.

    -Dan
    I would love to see some detail pictures of the actual M82 stock. I've heard most available in the States were take off's and had bedding compound on them, and it would be interesting to see how far up the barrel they were bedded, as well as whether they ran a rear pillar or not. I have been kicking around an idea of converting my second stock to a more correct accessory rail, but that will take some real head scratching.
     
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    PracticalTactical

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    So... I was organizing the basement the other day and came across this old brochure for the Parker Hale M85, sorry not the M82.

    I was dead serious about buying one of these at the time and painfully regret that I didn't.

    I remember handling them in Winnipeg where I was given the brochure from one of the sales guys at the Parker Hale booth. Must have been over 30 years ago.

    Sadly by the time I decided to buy one, they were already out of production.

    Parker Hale (1).jpg
    Parker Hale (2).jpg
     
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    YF12A

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    Same thing happened to me with an M82, I truly feel your pain. The ones that got away, you never seem to forget, like a couple of gas trap Garand's, an HK PSG-1 for stupid cheap money, a cased matching no's British No.4 sniper rifle for $500.00 and others, like a 1970 Ram Air IV 4 speed GTO Judge. They still hurt!

    But miracles do happen. I dated a beautiful woman in High School until my mid 20's, the true love of my life, but I was too immature to handle our relationship and we split up. By luck and chance, I told my best friend who initially had introduced us in the '70's how badly I still missed her, a year ago. It took him months, but he found her number last year. I called her, she was very happily surprised, and after getting to renew our relationship, we've been inseparable ever since. I'm not ever letting her get away again! Moral? Don't ever give up on hope!
     

    merrildog

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    Barreled action should be done this week, so am thinking about the finish. I am going with Cerakote. Anyone who have fondled an M82 in real life able to comment on the finish? I have heard everything from blued, to parkerized to a rubbery black enamel. I was contemplating sniper gray to mimic parkerizing, or maybe armor black to copy the enamel, but not really sure.
     

    Random Guy

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    Anyone who have fondled an M82 in real life able to comment on the finish? I have heard everything from blued, to parkerized to a rubbery black enamel.

    Based on the decent color pic I have in a book re an M82, I'm pretty sure it has a polished, blued bolt, but the Mauser-style extractor is 'in the white'. The receiver itself and barrel appear to be a dark parkerizing or black oxide type finish (flat black/dark grey is how I would describe it). Swivels look blued. That's my opinion fwiw, but I have never handled an M82.

    ON EDIT: I stand corrected, based on these high quality pics: bolt, receiver and barrel, etc are all clearly polished and blued - at least on the TX1200 Model . (Note: This example is a civilian TX1200 target rifle converted into an M82 configuration- but I would guess that a military-ordered sniper version of the M82 could have been parkerized finish?). Excellent article on this rifle: Good profile pics (also attached)
     

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    merrildog

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    I have been using that Thames Valley gun as a model for mine, it is a good write up. From what I can tell, the 1200 TX was blued. Some of the M82's were blued, and some parkerized. When they went in for service, it appears some were enameled black. I'm thinking Armors Black from Cerakote, and maybe lighten it a bit with sniper grey. With most hand made guns, there really seemed to be no set standard....
     

    njohn890

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    That’s a thing of beauty, thanks for chronicling your build It looks great. Love how you got a modern match barrel blank turned to the correct PH profile, lots of guys don’t get that level of detail. Awesome. The stock work looks great as well. My introduction to target rifle shooting was as an Army Cadet in Canada as a 16 year old back in the early 80’s. I went on a summer course where all we did was shoot every day on a military 1000 yard range on Vancouver Island. We shot traditional 308 target rifles all day, coached by experienced civilian shooters.

    One day at the range some PPCLI ( Army light infantry) snipers from the local barracks showed up with C3’s and started shooting at the 600. Seeing the figure 12 targets pop up in amongst the bank of 5V bullseye targets we were using I was instantly hooked on military sniper rifles from that day until now. I can’t remember if they had the C3 Unertl 10x for optics at that time or still had the Kahles(?) 6 power optic. They were wood stocked and looked just like yours as best as I recall.

    Awesome build, thanks for sharing it with us.
     

    ZG47A

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    Princess Patricia’s (PPCLI) have a special place in sniper history, as I recall. A certain long shot with a .50 cal rifle, in Afghanistan, if my memory is correct. It is after midnight where I am and I need to sleep, otherwise I would drag out the relevant book.
     

    308pirate

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    My introduction to target rifle shooting was as an Army Cadet in Canada as a 16 year old back in the early 80’s. I went on a summer course where all we did was shoot every day on a military 1000 yard range on Vancouver Island. We shot traditional 308 target rifles all day, coached by experienced civilian shooters.

    Just OT but I have to say, how awesome that had to have been. I was a US Sea Cadet in HS but never did anything that cool.
     

    njohn890

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    Just OT but I have to say, how awesome that had to have been. I was a US Sea Cadet in HS but never did anything that cool.

    The early 80’s was a hoot, as Cadets we could qualify to go on a range of regular army courses as well, like the Regular Army Airborne course, 3 weeks at CFB Trenton or Petawawa earning the same jump wings with 7 jumps out of a Herc as full time military, and being the time of the Iron Curtain, you could go through basic infantry training and attend NATO exercises like Reforger in West Germany with the Russki’s staged on the other side. Even got a little badge like the Boy Scouts. I think it was called the Canadian Forces Europe badge. All as a snot nosed 16 year old no less.

    I think somewhere in the early 2000’s Canada became a signatory to the Child Soldier Act, so the poor kids don’t get all that good stuff anymore unfortunately.

    Apologize for the thread sidetrack.
     

    njohn890

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    Princess Patricia’s (PPCLI) have a special place in sniper history, as I recall. A certain long shot with a .50 cal rifle, in Afghanistan, if my memory is correct. It is after midnight where I am and I need to sleep, otherwise I would drag out the relevant book.

    Yes that was during Operation Anaconda, PPCLI snipers confirmed kill at 2340 yards using a McM Tac 50 I believe. A Brit beat it later with an AW, then Cdn SF got it back in Syria.
     
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    sandwarrior

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    Yes that was during Operation Anaconda, PPCLI snipers confirmed kill at 2340 yards using a McM Tac 50 I believe. A Brit beat it later with an AW, then Cdn SF got it back in Syria.

    It was 2430 meters. Which Is 2657 yards. An accomplishment beyond belief at the time in military history/capability. That was since beaten by COH Harrison at a distance of 2707 yds.
    What many don’t understand, it’s not so much the distance to these men, it’s the fact they stopped the Talban from further attacking our allies. More specifically, the men in their own units!
     
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