DOC'S BOOKS &ARTICLES
Tominator Shotgun- BG Series
Sporting Rifle AVAILABLE ON CUSTOM ORDER
This page comprises a listing of the traditional rifles and smoothbores that Doc makes for his own entertainment and eventually for sale. He does it while waiting for the phone to ring when he's on call. Some are pretty plain, some are fancy, most will have been fired at least enough to proof them, make sure the gun functions properly and the sights are reasonably close. Many times this is done at a match. Doc rarely takes the same gun to a match, prefers a new one every time, it makes the ordeal more challenging. Some of the guns are new, some antiques, some will have been used quite a lot, some are trade-ins, inevitably some will be beaters, but all will be identified and thoroughly described. All are guaranteed to please or money back. (We don't pay S&H either direction, even if you return it) All are ON SALE at any time, whether as a rough kit, assembled in the white, carved, engraved , decorated, or beat to pieces. Just email firstname.lastname@example.org and ask for the price. POR Feel free to make an offer. Dickering can be fun.
Doc's custom guns are often shown on the Track of the Wolf webpage, amongst the many fabulous offerings that TOW displays. Their photos are truly fabulous, with hard to see detail plainly shown. GoTo trackofthewolf.com, click on guns, then the catagory of gun you want to see, ie- flintlock, then scroll down the pages to find one of Doc's offerings. There are usually 1 or 2 there.
EXAMPLE- Doc built Jaeger, 54 caliber Colerain barrel with round bottom rifling, barrel is 31 inches, swamped, making the rifle very fast with superb balance. Stock is BEAUTIFUL dense cherry, early Germanic flintlock, Traditional DST, carved wooden patch box cover with latch, brass furniture throughout, incised and bas relief carved in the transitional Baroque/Rococco style, the lion on the butt behind the cheek-peice bas-relieved and the rest of the scrolling on both sides incised carved. The engraving matches the provenance of the carving with the lion motif carried through.
THIS IS WHAT THE BUYER WROTE ABOUT IT:
" I admire this rifle tremendously. I've admired your work for quite a while! It is beyond my comprehension how anyone can inlet the ramrod pipes, trigger guard, carve the stock and engrave the brass work such as you have on this rifle. That is to say nothing of the engraving on and your signature on the barrel. You have my sincere appreciation for the quality of your work. It's obvious this is a labor of love. Again, I certainly admire your work. You will be long and well remembered among comtemporary rifle builders.
260- Original French dueler, 50 caliber, second of a set of two, (don't know where the first one is) quite accurate with 20 grains ffg and .490 ball, single set trigger fires set or unset, , beautiful swirl Damascus twist barrel in excellent shape. I have won matches with this one----------------POR
#539 Jaeger flintlock 69 caliber 'masterwork' by DOC. In the Germanic tradition, every journeyman had to produce a masterwork in order to graduate into the top ranks of gunmakers. I started work on this rifle in 1972, and it has turned to be more of a 'try gun' than a 'masterwork'. I have used it to try many new (to me) techniques, including wire inlay, ivory carving and inlay, poetry (verse on the top flat of the barrel), flintlocks from scratch, sliding wooden patchboxes, chiseled and scenic engraving, complex bas-relief carving, etc., and I'm probably not done yet.
The flintlock is one I made. It's the size of an English trade lock but with Germanic features. After building that one, I decided I would buy them from a specialist. I also made the DST and decided the same thing. I still occasionally make a flintlock, but only when I can't buy the model or style that I want.
The large silver inlay on the cheek-piece is heavily engraved, showing a cupid in the tree to the left, a naked woman lying under the tree and an amorous cross-bow wielding gentleman kneeling over her. Both the brass trigger guard and butt-plate are heavily engraved. The inlay in the butt-stock is carved ivory, as are the inlays at the wrist. All that carving is in bas-relief.
The side pieces opposite the flintlock are ivory, the real stuff from an elephant, carved to match the bas relief carving in the wood.
The inlays shown here are ivory too, carved to match the wood. The rifle weighs in at 11 lbs. , but holds pretty well. It needs the weight, a shot with a 69 cal ball and 180 grains FFg will set you back a step. The recoil is solid, to say the least.
#579- Very fancy Jaeger rifle by DOC, the brass furniture is from an elegant one by Paul Poser, 31 inch swamped 58 caliber barrel by Colerain, Elegant chisled flintlock, handmade by DOC, elegant AAAA European walnut, DST, chisled brass furniture including brass insert in the patchbox lid, elegant carving and engraving. This is a beauty!! THE RIFLE IS NOW AT TRACK OF THE WOLF. GOTO THEIR WEBSITE AND SEE THEIR BEAUTIFUL PHOTOGRAPHY. DEAL WITH THEM IF YOU WANT TO BUY IT.
The rifle is incise carved from one end to the other, in the Baroque-Georgian-Rococco style popular in the 1750's in Europe.
The flintlock is an elegant thing, just look at the hunting scene on the lockplate. It's smaller than you would expect, only 5 1/2 inches long and one inch wide..
Jaeger's have a reputation of being thick, heavy and clumsy, but this rifle is the antithesis of that statement. It is probably the most functionally elegant flintlock rifle that I've ever built. Not only is it beautiful, but it handles like a dream: quick to the shoulder, the eye right on the sights, the flintlock drips sparks and the touch-hole is properly sunsetted for fastest ignition. I haven't shot it, but it should shoot every bit as good as it looks and holds.
The ramrod pipes are beautifully designed and executed. I just love that gargoyle on the rear pipe. I think he is sticking out his tongue at the tax man.
The side-lock casting shows a bit of French influence. The French were the leaders in arms design at this time. Their work was greatly admired and widely copied.
The brass castings are exquisitely done, the best quality that I've ever dealt with. Their design is elegant, more than matching the carving and engraving. If you look close, you'll see the French influence here , too. I have yet to polish and blue the bolts and screws.
The barrel is heavily engraved up past the rear sight and around the front sight, in the same elegant Baroque-Georgian- Roccoco mix as the castings.
The incised carving goes all the way up the forestock.
The stock is oil finished. European walnut is known for the elegant black streaking and consistent grain formation. It is very strong yet elegant. The barrel is heavily engraved at the breech up past the rear sight and at the muzzle with roccoco scrolling and my signature- quite elegant. The barrel is browned. The lock is antique rust blued. Rubbing successive coats of oil into the lovely stock has produced a lovely sheen. I wish the photos were better, they don't do the gun justice. Make me an offer I can't resist.
#595- Doc-built side by side 20 bore double flintlock smoothbore rifle, barrels tapered octagon to round, low rifle sights, side by side flintlocks, double trigger, rear trigger actuates left lock, front trigger does the right lock, lock panels tapered to the rear with inset locks for excellent grip conformation, double keys surrounded by silver ovals, barrels regulated for stout loads with patched round ball, can shoot shot loads as well. POR
#613- French Dragoon pistol, a very traditional military 20 bore smoothbore personal sidearm, issued by the French, perfect for a Revolutionary persona. Photos will follow as it finishes. POR
#617- Wender rollover flintlock rifle, 3/4 inch octagon barrels, 36 rifled and 45 smoothbore. Classy 4A maple stock, 2 pieces of coarse
This should be a great small game gun, from squirrels to turkey.
#655- 45/70 Double Rifle rebarreled by DOC, originally started life as a high quality German 20 gauge double shotgun. It has the best of actions, with double lug underbite and fits up as tight as my banker. It's in the process of regulation, using black powder equivalent loads, ribs are not yet in place. It's been a fun project. Watch for more pics as it gets done. TENTATIVELY SOLD
Some double rifles are easy to regulate, especially the really large caliber ones, but some are really tough. This turned out to be one of the latter. I'll bet that I've soldered and re-soldered the barrels at least a dozen times trying to get the barrels regulated. At the last try, they were shooting 1.5" too wide and on inch too far up and down at 25 yards. That means groups 6 inches wide and 4 inches vertically at 100 yards. Not good enough. I will mill off another .0100" from the muzzle shim and raise the lower barrel muzzle by .0070. Maybe then it will come close. I want a 4-5 inch group at 100. Each barrel by itself is accurate, but getting them to shoot into the same group has been a decidedly difficult task. That's why doubles cost so much.
Well, finally got the small groups I wanted. Now to re-finish the checkering and wood, brown the barrels and repair the buttplate.
#661- 8 bore percussion double smooth rifle, that's 83 caliber, in a beautiful, close-grained, very solid walnut stock, meant to shoot a 2 oz. ball at truly big stuff. Barrels are 24 inches long, side by side, will be regulated to hit at 25 yards, weight will come out at about 12+ lbs. Should be a grand back up gun. I even bought a Led-Sled just so I could regulate this one. TENTATIVELY SOLD
#664- Over-under percussion rifle in .451 X .451 caliber, shallow groove, fast twist for White elongated slip fit bullets, regulated to strike center at 100 yards, figured walnut with grain selected to run through the wriswt, original back action locks, double triggers, all iron furniture, including cap box, 2 ramrods, upper barrel rib, double triggers, scroll trigger guard. Very British in style. Sir Joseph Whitworth would have been proud of it. POR.
#665- Flintlock drilling with side by side 20 gauge shot barrel on the right, 50 caliber round ball rifle barrel on the left and 36 caliber round ball rifle barrel underneath. Yes the flintlock for the under barrel will be upside down, which works surprisingly well.. All iron furniture. All three barrels regulated to center at 50 yards.
#666- Classic lightweight side by side double flintlock fowler in 20 gauge. The walnut looks pretty ugly here but is pretty underneath all that grime and stain. Manton flintlocks, double triggers, single fore-end key, less than 7 lbs. Iron furniture with a touch of silver.
#667- Dutch Officers Fusil in 16 gauge (67 caliber) with unique chisled brass furniture, very nice walnut with slight underbelly and forearm swell, chisled flintlock, octagon-round barrel by Colerain 40 inches long, sling swivels. Barrel and lock are inletted in the photo below, the stock will slim up a bunch as final shaping takes place. Watch for photos as it finishes.
The brass furniture is absolutely elegant, there is a charming grotesque on the buttplate, the other furniture continues the theme. The pierced sideplate and thumbpiece are going to be really fun to inlet.
The stock has been slimmed to final configuration, the barrel is pinned to the stock and the trigger guard partially inletted. The black tape is there only to hold the trigger on for the photo.
This lock is as beautiful as they get. It has an internal bridle but lacks one on the frizzen. A large shouldered screw assures good fit and function for the frizzen. This military arm is a copy of one made just before the Revolutionary War. It will be the perfect longarm for an American patriot of Dutch descent going up against the British. No shooting 'til you can see the white's of their eyes!!
#668- Classic 12 x 12 bore John Sutton flintlock double fowler, 28 inch barrels, Egg flintlocks tapered to the rear for a narrow wrist, double triggers, blued steel furniture, dense cherrywood stock . SOLD
The hard part of a double flintlock is the breeching. It involves a lot of detailed machine work with final hand fitting. Getting the barrels situated just right, with touch-holes aligned, is the crux of the matter. Once there, adding the hooked breech and the locks is axiomatic. Of course, the sear stems need to be parallel so the double triggers match. Once the triggers are placed, then you can locate the buttplate for the length of pull wanted, then install the buttplate.
The standing breech is slotted for the hooks on the breechplugs. The plugs are machined so they can be removed if needed, the upper rib part of one, the other fitted to conform to the inside curve of the opposite plug. Thy plugs are fitted with carefully sunsetted stainless counter-bored touch-hole inserts. Once loaded, you will see a grain of powder poking its nose out of the touch-hole, ready to catch the flash of priming for the fastest possible shot..
The tang and the trigger plate are bolted together. The trigger guard unscrews from the plate. There are two triggers, the rear trigger fires the left lock, the right lock is actuated by the front trigger. There is a single key holding stock to barrels.
The gun is shootable with ordinary 12 gauge loads, up to 1 1/2 oz. shot and 100 gr. Black powder. It has never been fired. The barrels are browned, the butt plate, trigger guard, triggers, and locks are antique hot rust blued.
Attention to all the small details, like inletting screw heads, bluing the screws and other iron furniture (after filing, sanding and polishing the iron parts first), browning the barrels then sanding and final finishing the stock, plus optional wrist escutcheon and checkering, if wanted, takes about as long as it does to rough out the gun in the first place. I figure that it takes every bit as much time and every bit as much artistry to build a double like this as it does a carved and engraved longrifle.
#669- Dutch 8 bore doglock fowler with 50 inch long barrel by Rayl, early Dutch doglock, brass furniture, Dutch influenced relief carving, the perfect piece for a re-enactor from Hoboken POR
The gun started life as a walnut plank,, shown above sawn to rough shape with barrel sitting lightly, ready for inletting. First I had to make the lock. It's a big one, 7 inches long, but authentic to shape and function. These big lock can be marvelous sparkers. Since it was usually shot from a rest, the long fall of the flint meant only reliable fire, which along with 2+ oz. of 'swan shot' meant dinner on the table.
The Dutch imported lots of arms in early America, many of surprisingly high quality for the time. This early lock is very well designed. Despite the lack of internal or external bridles, it should be an excellent sparker and provide centuries of service. It helps that it's made of modern steels. Note that the frizzen spring has a very early, wheel-lock-like appearance.
Now the lock, tang and barrel are inletted and the trigger and trigger guard are in place. The buttplate is 2 inches wide and 6 inches high for comfortable shooting. Three screws hold the lock in place. The side-plate is an early serpent or dragon design. There are four pipes for the wooden 7/16th ramrod. When you go hunting or to Rendevous, be sure to take a sturdy young man to carry the gun and hold your forked gun-rest (not supplied).
#672- Wheelock by Zelner, made in the 16th century in Austria, I have had the lock for 35 years, I had intended to stock a rifle using it, but I doubt that I have the skill to justify the effort. It's probably worth more by itself than it is in a restocked rifle. It really belongs in a museum. I guess it's for sale, but be prepared to reach deep into your pocket. POR
This original lock is by Caspar Zelner, one of a family who made guns in Austria in the 1500's. The lock dates from probably the late part of that century. He was a well known maker. It has stimulated me to build several wheel-locks. I finally found a lock kit that resembles it. See project #715 at the bottom of the page.
#673- 10 bore double side by side fowler, 32 inch barrels, beautiful piece of walnut, later goose neck flintlocks with panels nicely tapering to the rear, double triggers, all steel furniture finished antique blue or brown. POR
#674- 10 bore double side by side fowler, longer barrels at 38 inches, walnut nicely configures with elegant sweep through the wrist, late double throat flintlocks with panels tapering to the rear for a slimmer wrist, double stock keys, iron scroll trigger guard, wide iron buttplate, double fore-end keys. POR
#675- Doc made Pauley double side by side rifle 504 caliber for heavy White slip fit bullets, AAA walnut with great grain structure and strength, stainless steel barrels and actions, coil mainsprings, copies Pauley's 1812 patent for the very first inline rifle, uses #11 or musket caps (for dangerous game), double triggers, all iron mounts and furniture, double safety with one incorporated in the separate cocking handles and another controlling both barrels (locks the sear) with thumb control adjustable for either left or right side. Pauley's hammers are false and are used to cock the in-line hammer. The triggers are Doc's invention, only improving on Pauley's concept. POR
This rifle is meant for big loads with big bullets for use on big, dangerous game. 150 grains 777 or Pyrodex P plus a 600 (+) grain bullet recommended. There are double recoil lugs to hold that recoil, plus hooked breeches for easy access and cleaning.
#676- Flintlock double fowler in 16 gauge with original nitro proofed barrels with full and modified chokes. Stock is lightweight cherry with good grain structure. Furniture brass with a bit of French influence. Double triggers actuate the Egg locks. Lock panels are tapered to the rear for a small grip. POR
#700 Here's a start on a very early all iron mounted Brown Bess musket, ca: 1720. Tower marked lock, wooden ramrod, no forend cap, very nice chunk of solid grained walnut, entirely traditional. POR
The barrel is 77 caliber as usual but a full 44 inches long, fitted for bayonet.
#709 This Jaeger rifle has a correct but plainer European walnut stock with extensive carving, early flintlock converted to a percussion with a swiveling nipple guard in place of the frizzen, and a 31" swamped Colerain barrel in 54 caliber. Furniture is brass, rococco engraved and chisled, there is a single leaf rear sight, DST and sliding wooden patchbox. As usual with my Jaegers, there is lots of stock and barrel decoration. Pull is 14" . There are sling swivels and an iron ramrod with a brass tip. This fine rifle is now at TRACK OF THE WOLF. Deal with them if you want to buy it. GOTO trackofthewolf.com for beautiful photos.
I took it a few Rendezvous last summer (2013) but got tired of shooting it as a percussion, so re-converted it back to flint with a new, matching flintlock, which sparks very well. Now you can do either, shoot the percussion version as it stands, or pull the nipple and drum, take off the percussion lock, install the supplied removable touch-hole and install the matching flintlock, like in the photo below. POR OBO.
The carving on the cheekpeice side is very Germanic with detail often seen on the Continent. The sliding patchbox is locked by a spring loaded latch on the buttplate. Pull up on the latch and back on the patchbox to open it. The above left pic was taken before the gun was engraved, the above right after.
There is a fancy thumbpiece on top of the wrist, poorly seen here, held by a screw from underneath. The ramrod ferrules are octagon and trumpet shaped, there is a rear button sling swivel and a front sling band. The band's screw also holds the barrel to the stock. The muzzle cap is screwed to the barrel, German style.
The percussion lock sports a spring loaded nipple guard in place of the frizzen, shown with the guard down on the nipple left and open in the middle. The flintlock version is shown on the right. The drum and touch-hole insert screw out, both have the same threads, so the locks can be inter-changed.
The DST is fitted and is functional, trigger is quite light and works both set and unset. Butt-plate and trigger guard engraving are finished. There are engraved embellishments on the rear pipe, the rear of the trigger guard and the toe plate as well.
This started out as a plain-Jane rifle but I could not leave it alone, kind of like a woman: sweet talk, pretties and lots of loving care and they get beautiful.
The Jaeger turned out fancy and I hope elegant. I shot it at couple of rendezvous this summer. It is now up for sale, with the engraving, with both flint and percussion locks.. SHOOTS JUST FINE EITHER WAY. POR OBO
#715 The ADVENTURE of an Austrian Wheel-lock with fancy (and expensive) chunk of European walnut, Colerain swamped octagon barrel in 54 caliber 38 inches long, elegant chisled brass furniture, elegant yet functional Germanic style wheel-lock, double-leaf rear sight. The adventure of making it is shown in 'Doc's Latest Adventures' SOLD
IT TOOK ABOUT 2 YEARS TO GET THIS RIFLE DONE, MOSTLY WAITING ON INSPIRATION FROM ABOVE BEFORE ATTEMPTING THE ART WORK. IF I PUSH TOO HARD, I ALWAYS SCREW IT UP, ONCE INSPIRED, THE WORK GOES SMOOTHLY AND ALMOST EFFORTLESSLY.
#719- US Cadet musket, issued to military cadets at West Point and the Virginia Military Institute in the 1840's, looks like a lightweight 1835 Flintlock musket but with shorter pull, shorter barrel and lighter barrel in 58 rather than 69 caliber. The stock will need cutting down to the smaller size of course. It will make a perfect trainer gun for a young man or woman. The pull will be 13 1/4 inches to fit a smaller person. POR
#725- The birth of a very elegant Jaeger with elegant European walnut stock, lots of carving to match the elegant chisled furniture. Caliber is 58. Watch for more photos as it comes along. I only work on guns like this one when an artistic fit hits me. I can't push the artwork or I screw it up. Bear with me.
The furniture is deeply chisled with baroque scenes, the elegant lock has an internal frizzen. The walnut is real European that cost more than most rifles. The barrel is a 31" Colerain with round bottom groove rifling. I haven't yet decided on carving, but it will be extensive as will engraving. I hope to make it a very elagant example of the art.
#726- Griffin English Gentleman's Rifle in 62 caliber. all antique rust blued iron furniture, steel ramrod, Twigg lock, Colerain octagon-round rifled barrel 44 inches long, AAAA walnut, SST, only a bit of understated carving and checkering. The tigered walnut is absolutely indescribable.
The blank shown above has been carved into rough form. Too bad my lousy photographic skills don't match the elegance of the wood. Watch for more photos as the project developes.
#727- Here you see the birth of a HUDSON VALLEY FOWLER with 12 gauge 44" barrel by Colerain, typically with Dutch furniture and carved decoration except for an English Trade lock.
The maple is AAAA, tigered from one end to the other on both sides.
#728- Here comes a Kings German Legion Rifle, used by George's personal regiment of mounted troops, known to be extremely professional and effective in the Napoleonic conflicts. This short rifle has a 62 caliber, swamped octagon 28.5" barrel mounted in a Long Land style fullstock, which means it looks a lot like a short Brown Bess with a Baker style flintlock and brass tipped iron ramrod. There was no bayonet or sling swivel. The rifle was carried in a boot. The walnut is elegant, as were many of the originals, the King personally picking up the bill for accutrements.
#729- Here is a nascent Club Butt Bess, actually a Brown Bess musket, restocked by a hometown smith in the Old Northeast with strong Dutch influence, as if the original musket somehow lost its original stock and the parts assembled by a Dutch influenced smith to create an elegant sporting fowler, often also used as a militia musket. The barrel is of course Bess's nominal 77 caliber, 44" long with Bess details at the breech, the lock is an early 1828 'Dublin Castle', the brass furniture is early , matching the lock. Such guns were made for both sporting and militia use, as most gun owners did both in the early days. A plug bayonet comes with it.
#730- You are seeing the birth of a Fergusson Fullstock Sporting Rifle. This will end up a copy of the elegant fullstock Fergusson gentleman's rifle that was in the Keith Neal collection, originally made by Egg. It's 58 caliber, meant to throw a .600 caliber ball. The conformation of the stock will be typical 1770's English with lightly engraved iron furniture and understated carving and checkering at the wrist
#731- Here's an unusual project, something I have been wanting to make for a long time: a HAWKEN style WENDER rollover percussion rifle-shotgun. Rifle barrel is 62 caliber and shotgun barrel is 12 gauge smoothbore. Gorgeous wood, late Bridger Hawken buttplate , scroll trigger guard, fancier Hawken toeplate and patchbox, and, (I hope) a DST. Back action percussion lock but Hawken patent breeches, two ramrods- one for rifle, the other for shotgun. This is what I imagine Sam might have made on custom order for an adventuresome client.
Both barrels will be rifle sighted. You will be able to use the 12 gauge for single ball, too. The 12 gauge will have interchangable chokes. It should be a great hunting combination. AAAA maple, great wood!!
#732- The bare beginnings of a Dimmick, St. Louis, half-stock 58 caliber plains rifle, iron mounted with JBR buttplate, English drip bar lock butted up against a Manton style long tang English percussion breech, long bar adjustable rear sight, two silver surrounded keys, English forend cap, long bar DST in an iron Dimmick hooked trigger guard: all in all, a better, stronger, more functional rifle than a Hawken.
#735- In the beginning!- barrel and stock for a 10 Bore flintlock rifle. Octagon to round barrel by Rayl, 77 caliber with slow twist and deep rifling for high velocity patched round ball. Perfect for Tiger in India with the Raz. The walnut is right elegant. Note the curve through the grip, grown especially for a hard kicking gun like this one. Watch for more photos as this elegant rifle developes.
It will sport all iron fittings, with broad buttplate to soak up recoil, scrolled trigger guard, single trigger, English flintlock by Chambers, Manton style Patent Breech with hooked tang, double leaf rear sight.
#736- The bare beginnings of a long anticipated project. I found this barrel in a Shanandoah Valley antique shop in 1961, during my second year of medical school in WashingtoN DC. It has served as a door stop until I finally had it re-lined . Sometime in the 70's I found the English Sea Service lock pictured, in ratty condition, at an Eastern Rendevous. Both have been sitting around , waiting to get put back into a functioning rifle for nigh 40 years. Looks like it's finally going to happen. Naturally, it will be a Virginia rifle, iron mounted, dark if not black. Watch for photos as it builds.
The barrel is hand forged, octagon, swamped, originally about 54 caliber and restored with a liner to the same caliber. It needs pipes, sideplate and sights plus stock.
Left: the original front sight is very low, just a sliver. This is what they meant when they speak of 'fine' sights. Left Middle: the rear sight slot, not very deep at all, the blade broken off long ago. Right Middle: the barrel breech. Note the size of the touch-hole. It's obviously rusted out but even counting the rust, it was originally much larger than anything we WOULD USE at present. Right: barrel lug in a filed slot, a fairly sophisticated treatment for such a crude barrel. QUESTION: Should I leave it rusty and pitted or clean it up? How about half and half with purposefully rusty/pitted/antique finish on all iron parts (except lock internals) to match?
Left: the Sea Service lock, used on an English marine pistol. These used to be fairly common at gunshows and rendezvous. I have owned several and all were real sparkers. Right: you can see the dimples in the barrel iron where the smith pounded the flats into the barrel. Perhaps barrel smiths found it easier to make a barrel octagon rather than round back in the days when modern engine lathes and milling machines were not available.
Shown above is the plank of AAAA maple that will eventually be fitted to the parts illustrated. You can get a hint of the gorgeous curl all the way from heel to toe.
AND THIS IS WHAT THE BLANK LOOKS LIKE AFTER IT HAS BEEN CARVED TO ROUGH SHAPE. WATCH FOR MORE PHOTOS AS THE PROJECT DEVELOPS
#737- The birth pangs of a Griffith steel mounted 12 bore fowler, Colerain octagon-round 44 " barrel, nice walnut with a bit of figure in the buttstock, steel furniture from the Rifle Shoppe, all exceptionally beautiful castings, steel ramrod. The built in tang will be modified into a hooked breech eventually.
There will eventually be a 62 caliber rifle (SEE # 726 ABOVE) just like this fowler, making a Rifle-Fowler pair looking and handling very much alike.
#746- Here we celebrate the birth of a FullStock Hawken in 54 caliber. Douglas barrel (never before used), percussion, AAA maple, all iron furniture. SOLD
There is another just like it in the works. Both are SOLD, one already delivered. Two others, with 15/16 inch barrels are on the schedule.
#748 We are illustrating the conception of a Christian Springs 62 caliber flintlock rifle with a Wolfe's Head side opening patchbox.
I know you can't see the figure but it is AAAA tiger striping. It will be brass mounted, stained with aqua fortis (which means dark) with DST, traditional sights and a bit of carving.
# 749- You are witnessing the birth of a classic John Noll flintlock copy. He was a Master, to say the least. His carving as elegant as it gets, every rifle known a masterpiece.
The maple is AAAA, too bad you can't yet see the figure. Watch for photos as it finishes up.
#750- Presenting the evolution of a late Manton Cavalry Carbine, the last one produced by the British before moving to the percussion system. All parts are cast from originals. The Lock, sidelock plate and lock screws are all original. Barrel is 62 caliber, rifled, by Colerain, 20 inches long, with a hook breech and steel swivel ramrod, along with a saddle bar and lanyard. The walnut is a bit better than ordinary military. the stock style is a modified Long Land Pattern, just a whole lot shorter. Watch for photos as this gun develops.
Now the stock is cut to the square. You can see it's going to be a short little thing. Should be great in a treestand for whitetail. the originals were smoothbore, but this one is rifled. Pull will end up at 14 inches, trigger is single of course, weight should be around 6.5-7 lbs. The horse to carry it and you about 1000.
#762- French Fowlers, brass mounted, there will be two, one single and one double (the double is already spoken for)
Showing a close up of the butt plate and trigger guard. Wood and barrels for the double illustrated. Once all the parts are accumulated, each gun will be illustrated separately.
A closer close up of the butt plate, trigger guard and external parts of the lock kit for the single barrel fowler(below). The single fowler will have a 38" 20 gauge octagon to round tapered barrel. The double will sport side by side locks with lock panels tapered to the rear and double triggers.
#764 HERE ARE THE BEGINNINGS OF A FERGUSSON ROTATING BREECH PISTOL
The crude drawing shows roughly what the pistol will look like eventually. The barrel brech and action/trigger guard are military rifle sized: they will get trimmed down a good deal in order to slim the pistol up. The lock is Queene Anne sized: it will match nicely with some period engraving added. t will end up with the dimensions of a 1770 Heavy Horse Pistol. They were large calibered pistols, usually carried in a saddle holster, big enuff to take down your opponents horse then club the rider to insensibility with the brass butt of the now empty pistol. Watch for more photos as it developes. SPOKEN FOR
#766 You are in on the conception of a Jim Bridger Hawken rifle in 62 caliber with AAA maple stock, tapered 36 inch long barrel by Colerain, all the classic Hawken features. SPOKEN FOR
This one is headed for Alaska and an Alaskan moose hunt. Watch for more pics as it finishes up.
#769- Here's a Jim Bridger Hawken aborning. AAA maple stock, Green Mountain 58 caliber barrel 1 1/8th inches octagon X 32 inches long, All iron accutrements except the key roundels, all the classic Hawken features. Watch for more pics as it finishes. POR OBO
Bridger buttplate, Long percussion lock, scroll trigger guard, hooked patent britch double bolted to long bar trigger plate with DST. iron thimbles and fore-end peice (the last GRRW made fore-end I have left), Hawken open rear and silver bladed-brass based front sights, 7/16" ramrod drilled and tapped for cleaning attachments.
#776 Here comes my 'favorite' Hawken RIfle. My friend Bill Fuller once owned the original. It sports one of the last GRRW barrels that I have held on to over the years, 1 1/16th " diameter, 58 caliber, 38" long. Sorry, it is already SPOKEN FOR.
#777- This baby was really in trouble, came near aborting but managed to rescue it. I had traded for an old India Made Baker rifle, turned out to be a smoothbore. It was a bit frayed around the edges, with a smoothbore barrel instead of rifled, a fat teak wood stock with a brown painted finish, the lock sparked but the internals were soft and I could see that it would not hold up, some parts were too straight without the proper taper, some were too flat, or wide or narrow, inletting had been crudely done with a chisel, and it was dated '79. I stripped it, cleaned it up and rasped it to proper shape and hardened the internal lock parts. To my surprise , the wood was sturdy and tough (I afterwards discovered that it was the preferred wood for WWll aircraft carrier decks) with straight grain but contrasting dark and light color. Once stained with aqua fortis and heated dark, it resembled expensive European walnut but more open grained. The barrel was smooth and obviously honed, no sign of ever being fired, but the breech had been crudely hacksawed, so I replaced it with a flint hooked breech and put in a counter-bored touch-hole in the proper sunset position. Also surprising, the lock sparked flawlessly once the frizzen and internals were hardened. The project has turned out pretty well. I proofed the barrel with a ten gauge load, (110 grains Black Powder, 2 oz. shot), tied to a tire, but will use a smaller 12 gauge load on turkey. (1 1/2 oz. #7 Italian nickle plated shot, 90 grains FFg Black Powder fired through one of my super turkey .570 chokes.) POR OBO
The barrel is browned to dull it down. Wouldn't want to scare the turkeys because of the shine (that's why I wear a hat, too) As it stands, it's ready for a meeting with the American riflemen at the Battle of New Orleans. POR OBO
#778 Here is one for the books, the beginnings of a Danish seal gun, with a 1600's style Snapplock, short octagon swamped GRRW .40 caliber barrel, nice wood, most of which will disappear as the gun finds its final shape. There will not be a buttstock, these light rifles were shot from the cheek, of your face, that is. SPOKEN FOR
These were simple guns, made for hard use in the sealing business. They were expected to be accurate, shots to the head were the rule, a hit anywhere else left the seal to swim off and become shark bait. Buttplates and trigger guards were plain strap iron, a pinned trigger was sufficient with a single ferrule for the ramrod. They were decorated, however, often painted and carved. The Snapplock has a horizontal sear, much like the wheelock, snaphaunces or early English locks. They look terribly odd, but they throw sparks and light fires.
#779- The adventure of a Broadbutt 10 bore Doglock Colonial Fowler. This is a truly simple gun. There are only seven parts: a Broadbutt stock without buttplate, a sheet iron trigger guard and simple pinned trigger, two sheet iron ferrules, a barrel and a lock. And the lock is simplicity itself. It is so simple I am going to illustrate it as an adventure, the kind that anyone can have. Skill and practice don't count much here. Any colonial blacksmith could build one using a hammer and a file and many probably did. The first lock I ever made at home was a Doglock. I made it out of strap iron and a 3/8th inch iron bolt. Cost $15 all told. But I did buy the spring. Nowadays I would forge one.
#780- The birth of a strict copy of the famous rifle that Edward Marshall carried on his famous 'long walk', really a run as I understand the event. Caliber is 58 by Colerain. Barrel swamped at 38", Maple is AAA
#781- The gestation of this K. James rifled fusil is already well along. English style, with French influence. Queene Anne flintlock, mixed iron and brass furniture. SPOKEN FOR
#782- This French 'Mosquette d'Infantrie' Musket will present as a cut-off, cast-off military gun adapted to civilian use. The original 1728 models had 44 inch barrels in 69 or 72 caliber with a side sling swivel on a band about halfway up the barrel. The stock illustrated was born crippled, with a large knot surfacing 2/3ds of the way up the barrel channel. It could not be rescued, so I amputated. The length of the stock is just right for a 32 inch tapered octagon-round barrel in 12 gauge. The single barrel band will go where it should, half-way to the old muzzle. The ramrod will be iron, as per original. The lock and furniture finally showed up.. Watch for more photos as it develops. Remember, any of these guns are generally available in any stage of finish. You can save substantially be finishing yourself. That's easy on a military gun simply because the finish is bright on the metal and oil on the wood. POR OBO
#785 Presenting a workaday version of a sporting Jaeger rifle, made for the local trade, with modestly decorated brass furniture, rather plain but nicely configured walnut stock, again with modest decoration, , a 31" Colerain barrel in 50 caliber, DST, 2 leaf rear sight, and custom flintlock. There will be a traditional button rear and front sling swivels, and a brass tipped iron ramrod. Rifles like this were often purchased by the minor nobility for hunting in the Old Country and taken with them to the New World when called into military service.
#786 You are witnessing the birth of an IRON MOUNTED JAEGER, sporting an AAAA tigered fullstock, Jack Haugh flintlock, Colerain 54 caliber swamped 31" barrel, DST, iron ramrod and sliding wood patch box cover. All iron will be browned, the stock will be finished dark with Aqua Fortis. Decoration semi-military. This is the kind of custom rifle an Austrian JaegerCorps officer might have carried for duty in America.
#787 Here comes a late flintlock era iron-mounted flintlock Mountain rifle by Peter Gonter, with AAA maple stock, Siler Premium flintlock, Colerain 50 caliber 38" swamped barrel, single trigger and iron patchbox and furniture, stained dark, all iron browned. POR OBO
Now we have grown up. The barrel and tang are inletted, as is the lock and sideplate and all other parts. The trigger has been adjusted and the trigger guard is pinned in place. The pipes and ramrod are present, also the muzzle cap and, of course, a Lancaster style patchbox. We see elegant raised carving behind the cheekpeice, modest incused carving around the tang and wrist. There is no engraving (so far) and the rifle is final finished. Since it is an iron gun, it deserves the dark finish with Aqua Fortis and heat. No shine in the woods that way. They called them, 'black rifles' in the South.
The Gonter famliy made guns from the Revolutionary period right up through the days of the fur trade. Some early ones were fancy, later ones were often quite plain. This one falls in the middle, probably made about 1815 and likely carried into the mountains of the far West for trade or treaty.
The flintlock is a Siler by Chambers, none better, the stainless touch-hole is sun-setted correctly, the screws are fire blued. The trigger is single, lets off at about 4 lbs.
The 'flint' in the jaws of the lock is wood, so the frizzen is not scarred. The silver decoration fits over a defect in the wood. They say the best gunsmith is the one that can fix his own goofs the best.
This a light, nice handling, 50 caliber hunting rifle, just right for sneaking through the woods, seeking whitetail, Indian, or Redcoat.
#788 And let there be- a GENTLEMAN'S RIFLE with English brass furniture, a Colerain 38" octagon to round barrel in 58 caliber, an elegant English Queene Anne flintlock, a single trigger and a silver escutcheon at the wrist. The rifle has been restocked in America with aqua fortis stained AAAA maple. It remains decorated in the English under-stated way. The original would have had a walnut stock. POR OBO
The rifle has kept the classic British conformation. The trigger guard is a French model, much admired and much used by the English. The elegant Chambers lock is carefully placed for best ignition. Too bad my poor photo skills fail to show the elegance of the figure in the maple. That figure extends all the way thru the stock, end to end, both sides. Note the cheek-piece. There is a brass front sight soldered to the barrel, but the rear is a two leaf folding sight in a dovetail. Most of the furniture is brass. The barrel has a 16 sided treatment to the front of the octagon section and is held to the stock with 4 stout pins.
The wrist eschutcheon is real silver, held to the wrist by a screw from underneath. Both the trigger guard and sidelock are nicely engraved, the butt plate return will sport an engraved stand of arms eventually. The lock and trigger are finished with an antique hot rust blue.
There is just a bit of raised carving behind the tang, in the understated British fashion. The wrist eschuteon, though , is deeply chisled. Not really chisled, although we speak of it that way, but carved in wax, then investment cast in pure silver. That technique has existed since the time of the Greeks.
Almost all the furniture on the rifle was investment cast. You do have to clean up the dross and finish the casting, so it's not all that easy.
The butt plate return hand engraving will hopefully somewhat match the trigger guard and side-plate cast-in engraving. The maple has been finished dark with heated Aqua-Fortis. It is shootable as is, ow that the back sight is dovetailed. The ramrod is iron, with a brass tip. The tip still needs tapering. There is also a wooden cleaning rod with tip tapped for accessories, which can be substituted for the heavier iron rod if wanted.
#789- This gun was stunted from birth, the buttstock was cracked , so I amputated to save its life and it became a Blanket Gun. Made me feel like a Civil war surgeon. It will sport all the usual accutrements of a NorthWest gun in 20 bore, except no buttplate or ramrod ferrule. The Indians may have hidden these guns under blankets but they were more often used horseback like a heavy dragoon pistol, one shot then it became a club. I'll try a few tacks to Indian it up some, it might grow some beads and feathers, too. The barrel illustrated is just for show- it's not the real thing.
#790- In The Beginning: a lighter weight Dimmick Plains rifle in 50 caliber with one inch straight octagon barrel, the usual Dimmick breeching, under-rib with 2 pipes, open sights, English Drip Bar percussion lock (many Dimmicks had them), Brass furniture on a cherry stock stained dark with aqua fortis. There will also be a DST and an iron fore-end cap. More photos to follow.
791- You are visualizing the adventure of a Triple Wender, a three barreled percussion rollover combination with a 12 bore shotgun, a 62 caliber rifle and a 50 caliber rifle, both rifles for patch and round ball. Barrels are 26" long and roll around a central axis, with a spring loaded lock just to the front of the trigger guard. Each barrel has its own ramrod. All barrels have rifle front sights, both rifle barrels have fixed rear sights but the shotgun does not. There is an interchangable choke in the shotgun barrel. The lock is back action with all iron furniture except a German silver sideplate opposite the lock.. Watch for more pics as the gun is completed. POR OBO
This is a hunting gun. As such it won't be fancy, just functionally elegant. Well. Maybe. I had intended to use a piece of plain walnut to match a plain hunting gun, but this short chunk of elegant walnut fell into my hands. Now I'm going to have to match the gun to the wood. Oh dear! Such a challange. What I'll do for the art of it.
I'm going to take this charming combination 'wender' (means 'winder' in German) turkey hunting end of April 2014, just could not resist getting some photos of it into the website despite its not being totally finished. As you can see, the screws are not yet blued and the rifle ramrods are missing their caliber specific cleaning jags.
You can see the locking latch that fits just to the front of the trigger guard. A short pull rearward on the latch then hand rotate to the barrel you want and the latch will automatically catch when it's in the correct position. The trigger is a single set but I've set it up as an assisted trigger, a bit of spring loading helps pull it off. Makes for a light touch without being finicky. The cap box is an original I've had around for years, just right for this gun, especially as there was a defect in the wood underneath it.
The trigger bar is double bolted to the upper tang and hooks into the face plate that rotates against the barrels. It is very sturdy. You can see the three barrels ends above, 50 caliber and 62 caliber for round ball and a 12 gauge shotgun. The shotgun barrel fits one of my Super Turkey chokes.
There is a nice cheek-piece for a right handed shooter, the iron buttplate is deeply checkered, the drums and nipples hold a blast guard in place, the silver decoration will get some engraving sometime, my signature, G B White, is on one rear barrel flat, Roosevelt is on another and Utah Territory is scroll engraved in on the third.
It looks bulky but that is deceptive. It's a near 10 Lb. gun but handles much better than you would think due to the short barrels. The weight is somewhat of an advantage with the 2 ounce shot loads in the4 shotgun and loads of 200 grain Black Powder with a 340 grain round ball in the 62 caliber rifle. Watch for more photos as it finishes up. Maybe I might even get a turkey with it. With a choice of three barrels, any critter that shows up is in danger. POR OBO
#797- Here is a Baker Infantry Rifle aborning. Most of the parts are there except the thimbles and sights. The wood is plain but very solid and sturdy. The parts are very authentic. The Baker rifle is a favorite of mine for flintlock hunting. The 62 caliber is perfect for elk and big deer and the design is elegantly functional. Watch for more photos as it finishes up.
Coming sometime (sooner or later) in no order of appearance
Brown Bess flintlock musket. long land pattern, classic 1742 brass fittings.
Several Double flintlock fowlers in 12, 16 and 20 gauge
.615 cal double percussion African rifle for 900 grain SuperSlug
.730 cal percussion double African rifle for 1200 grain SuperSlug
Fergusson 62 caliber turn-breech rifle, action found on King's mountain after the battle, re-stocked by a local gunsmith.
Looks like an iron mounted southern flintlock rifle with a Fergusson breech
1795 US flintlock musket
A Dutch fowler or two or three
Pair of lightened Ruger Old Army percussion pistols with custom octagon barrels, fluted cylinders
1816 flintlock 69 cal musket with original restored rusty lockplate, metal finished to match the plate.
Cadet Rifle with original military rolling block action and barrel in .50/55 Carbine
1/3 scale 1.2 inch rifled cannon by Norman Wiard
5/8 scale rifled breechloading cannon by Whitworth
Leman fullstock flintlock mountain rifle with original Leman barrel
Schuetzen 10 lb target rifle Denver style
1/2 dozen 1895 Mauser bolt action rifles for heavy bullets and BT209 powder, . 451 caliber
Hagerstown Hawken flintlock
Break open 12 bore double percussion shotgun 209 ignition
12 smoothbore X 69 rifled side by side double flintlock
pair 62 caliber percussion & flintlock round ball double rifles
69 caliber percussion round ball double rifle
69 caliber short fullstock Jaeger flintlock double rifle
Kentucky stocked BB gun
Beyer flintlock rifle
Fusil Fin 20 bore
flintlock mortar gun for tennis balls
Southern perc rifle left hand with original Golcher lock
Wender flintlock 58 rifled & 20 Smoothbore iron mounted English style
English 12 gauge late half stock flint fowler
Several heavy caliber Plains and Hawken pistols
English Doglock fowler
British Sargeant's carbine 62 cal
Nock Volley gun in 45 caliber
7 barrel goose gun in 32 caliber
Hawken fullstock percussion rifle in 50-54 caliber (several)
Brass barreled flintlock Blunderbus about 6 gauge
Several H&R break-open single shot shotguns converted to muzzleloading rifles
with White 451 barrels and Doc's 336 Primer setup or 209 primer. Works like gangbusters with the new Blackhorn 209 powder.