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you cant use that fancy hat with 54r
You will need a barrel and some ZB26 or 30 mags ad a bit of a mod to the bolt face
 

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you cant use that fancy hat with 54r
You will need a barrel and some ZB26 or 30 mags ad a bit of a mod to the bolt face
And if you shoot it in 54r watch the headspacing, my 54R Bren had a real problem with blowing up with some ammo and some barrels.
 

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And if you shoot it in 54r watch the headspacing, my 54R Bren had a real problem with blowing up with some ammo and some barrels.
If you have a 303 barrel thats properly head spaced for the gun and you get that barrel and bolt modified for 54r then the headspace wont change. But if you just chuck in any barrel and hope for the best then its a crap shoot.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Being freshly new to Brens, how does one headspace?

and I know the drum is not for 54r
 

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If you have a 303 barrel thats properly head spaced for the gun and you get that barrel and bolt modified for 54r then the headspace wont change. But if you just chuck in any barrel and hope for the best then its a crap shoot.
Well I definitely had the crap shoot that's for sure.
 

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Being freshly new to Brens, how does one headspace?

and I know the drum is not for 54r
There are locking shoulders (a piece) that screws in behind where the bolt comes in to lock. They come in differing sizes and short of grinding them down, they are NOT adjustable to all sizes, so it IS a bit of a crap shoot to narrow it down.
 

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And what's more, I had a 54r barrel from the builder (supposedly matched etc) and it STILL blew up occasionally. Then stopped for a bit and then all of a sudden did it again, damaging the bolt and bolt carrier. I gave up and am trying to switch to .308. (still OTHER problems with that).
 

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Cal, is yours semi or auto and does that matter?
mine's semi (and built by one of the pre-eminent builders of Brens. (He recently told me he won't do 54r builds on Brens anymore because of the problems of the sort I was talking about. the problem with the locking shoulder part is that they are not made anymore, so you are left with surplus WWII parts etc. (for .303) and possibly some .308. Since the rifle was never chambered in 54R there are NO parts for it in that caliber. They all have to be custom made or fashioned from original parts not meant for that caliber. And unlike a 1919 that has head spacing gauge and endless head spacing possibilities, it's not the same with the Bren. You put in your best estimate for the locking shoulders, try it and see. If it goes BOOM and launches your mag into space (as mine had done multiple times before I gave up on 54r), you get another head spacing shoulder or grind down yours by eye and try again. And AGAIN. THEN the builder says as the barrel wears, the head spacing can change and... cause another BOOM. At least that's what we think happened to be to cause me to change to .308.
 

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Nice

54r ==>> Troy - barrel ext..... enough said.
Does good work

Stay Safe

Later 42rocker
I LOVE Troy and use his 54R kit with my 1919 and have never had a problem with it. BUT... Troy doesn't build Brens. He can ream your barrel for you, but he's not fitting it to the gun. You're back to best guess when you install it.
 

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Congrats Rory that is a nice addition to the stable. I have heard nothing but issues with the 54r builds so I personally would avoid it. I have not looked in to the 308 build yet so I can't comment on that. My MkI is still in 303
 
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