54 How to Repair an Antique Ithaca Shotgun
Ithaca shotguns were originally manufactured in 1937 in response to the Remington Model 17. Because this pump-action shotgun both loads and ejects shells from the bottom, the Ithaca has become a popular choice for left-handed shooters.
Rich Shoop (The Gun Slinger, Mt. Ayr, Indiana) was hired to restore this antique Ithaca, and discovered a missing piece on the barrel. After reconstructing a custom part, Rich called Muggy Weld for assistance, and opted to reattach the piece with SSF-6 56% Silver Solder.
Prior to making the repair, Rich sandblasted all the steel parts to remove any impurities and oxidation. While SSF-6’s unique flux coating is specially formulated to provide twice the cleansing action of conventional flux coatings, pre-cleaning the base metal will ensure a superior bond and will require less flux to achieve said bond.
After sand-blasting the steel parts, he used an oxyacetylene torch to braze the steel, removed excess flux quickly and easily with warm water and a wire brush, then powder coated the shotgun to finish the repair.
- Never heat metal bright red, as this can impede the flow of SSF-6
- Broadly preheating beforehand reduces the surrounding metal from pulling heat away from the targeted area
- Allow the flux to work momentarily before adding the rod
- Flow out each drop of rod before depositing more
- Almost any torch can be used, including: propane, MAPP gas, natural gas and air, straight acetylene, or oxyacetylene
- Cheap brass tips do not work well in most cases, a trigger start torch or Bernzomatic BZ8250HT Torch is recommended
- If the rod is in place and you want more flow, add more flux
- After brazing, let the part air cool naturally to achieve the highest strength