Recently purchased a NIB M77 Hawkeye Alaskan in 375 Ruger that is new/old stock. Only noticeable difference from new model I can see is the upper sling swivel is located on the forend instead of the barrel band. Ruger admits that was a minor issue on the early Alaskan/African with the swivel sometimes biting a finger due to the recoil of of the 375 & 416 Ruger so the barrel band was implemented. I asked Ruger if I shipped them the rifle could they remove the forend swivel and install a barrel band swivel and I was surprised to hear that this "was not a service that they offered."
Anybody have any experience with this? Is this something a gunsmith could do? Would want a barrel band swivel that matched the matte stainless finish for a "factory look". Or should I just be happy with it the way it is?