Author Topic: Wood shape around the barrel tang  (Read 21700 times)

Offline davebozell

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Wood shape around the barrel tang
« on: April 17, 2015, 02:38:04 AM »
Recently in another post, Mike Brooks told Kaintuck not to dish out the wood next to his barrel tang.  My question is, should the wood in this area follow the barrel flats, or should there be "end grain" exposed where the wood is shaped around the barrel?  I find that this area of a rifle is not often shown in photographs.  Any pictures or advise would be greatly appreciated. The rifle in question is a "golden age" mutt that will probably never be HC.  Just trying to stay off Mike's naughty list!

Offline Stophel

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2015, 03:23:49 AM »
Depends entirely upon the type of rifle!

In general, flat, flat, flat from the tang to the lock panels.  With exceptions.  The Bethlehem/Christian's Spring guns sometimes are a little concave here, as are some Berks county guns. Some others may even be a bit rounded, especially if there is a round barrel.

It simply is not going to line up with the oblique barrel flats (for the most part).  It could if the barrel breech was tall enough, but it almost never is with modern barrels.   Sometimes that little bit of endgrain is left as a square corner and showing, sometimes the corner is rounded off a little bit, sometimes beveled off, sometimes the flat surface is sort of rolled down to meet the barrel.  Lehigh guns especially always look very "unfinished" here.


I drew these some time ago.  I guess I need to do some showing beveled and rounded edges...

The first one shows how sometimes both sides are not the same.  The sideplate panel is sometimes shorter than the lock panel.  They are done that way so that they could get the flat that "shows" to be closer to the barrel flat.  The second shows concave surfaces.


This last one is what I have seen so far on probably every single solitary Lehigh type gun.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2020, 10:22:15 PM by rich pierce »
When a reenactor says "They didn't write everything down"   what that really means is: "I'm too lazy to look for documentation."

Offline davebozell

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2015, 03:43:09 AM »
Your sketches are great!  They are exactly what I was looking for.  Looks like the best route for me will be the flats in sketch #1.  Thanks so much!

Offline Stophel

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2015, 03:52:32 AM »
That first one is going to be difficult, if not impossible, to do with most modern rifle barrels.  It will require a pretty tall breech to get the wood flat that close to the barrel flat.  It can be "simulated" by "bending" the flat surface down at the front to bring it close to the barrel flat.  Though hard to see, this is what was done on this old German gun.  Ahead of the rear lock bolt, the wood flat starts to bend down towards the barrel. 


I will often do something like this.



Just beveled the corner off so that it meets the barrel and flows down to the "flat" on either side of the barrel.

This one kinda rolls down to meet the barrel without any sharply defined bevel, which seems common on this type of Berks county gun



Many old guns are so worn it can be hard to tell if they were beveled or rounded... or just left square.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2020, 10:22:55 PM by rich pierce »
When a reenactor says "They didn't write everything down"   what that really means is: "I'm too lazy to look for documentation."

Offline Dave B

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2015, 05:22:58 AM »
Here is an example of what Stophel was talking about with the German piece. The panel drops as the line pases the  lock bolt moving tward the breach of the barrel.










Dave Blaisdell

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2015, 01:55:37 PM »
My current build...that chritian spring rifle will have the tang/barrel joint area like the last photo shows....
What I should of had was a flat between the tang and the side panel, then 45 the slope to the barrel flat about 1/2" behind the barrel to bring the end grain wood down to where it looks more " beefie"
There will be carving, and I'm not worried......it will blend.
Tricky little areas, and sometime my hobbies get lots of comments ;D

If I could ever invent a wood welder, we would ALL have one in our shops!

Currently..."the beast" is getting her forearm lines put on....and this silver mapleiece is HARD.....the Dunlop boys said it would work...and IT IS :D

Thanks for posting all these photos fellas......but if you take any of those rifles with "proud" wood by Tip's place...... :-\
He wants the wood to be almost like a "Lexington" tang area ........dished. Ego my sins on this rifle...

Heh...everyone remember to have a great FRIDAY!!!
Marc n tomtom

Offline Acer Saccharum

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #6 on: April 17, 2015, 04:22:54 PM »
And sometimes on originals, the barrel tang is not bent to the curve of the wrist, but a little less curvature. This may be a hold over from wheellock styling. This causes a slight 'platform' around the tang, which must transition down to the wrist. Use of carving helps make this transition natural.

My work in front; background is a page from 'Steinschloss Jaegerbuschen'



« Last Edit: April 21, 2015, 01:55:26 AM by Acer Saccharum »
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Offline Pete G.

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2015, 06:02:40 PM »
Thinning the sideplate panel and keeping it parallel to the bore facilitates working the wood down to the barrel flat, but even then there can be problems. Certain schools handled this differently from others. That can be one of the myriad details that can make a rifle correct or not for the time/place.
I am convinced that carving evolved on certain areas of the longrifle to mask certain awkward transitional areas like the flat to round between breech and wrist.

Offline E.vonAschwege

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2015, 06:20:01 PM »
Dave,
  I think Mike Brooks may also have been referring to the manner in which many newer builders use a rat tail file to hollow out a small concave radius immediately surrounding the lock panels, also serving to raise it above the wrist and forestock.  You'll notice that none of the examples shown here have such a detail, as it is almost entirely a contemporary feature.  On occasion I've seen some percussion guns with that kind of scoop around the lock panels, but not a classic flintlock.  The examples shown, particularly Chris's sketches, are done by making either side of the tang dead flat, then hollowing it slightly to meet the barrel flat if so desired.  Sometimes the relieved moldings around the lock panels creates the appearance of a scoop, but this isn't actually the case.  Hope this helps!
-Eric

Former Gunsmith, Colonial Williamsburg www.vonaschwegeflintlocks.com

Offline JTR

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2015, 06:32:48 PM »
Nice examples there, Dave B!

John
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Offline davebozell

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2015, 02:37:31 AM »
Thanks everyone.  This info is really helpful.  I'll be sure to keep my transitions to the lock panel as straight as possible. The pictures and sketches all show that more clearly than I have seen before.

Offline Stophel

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2015, 07:44:35 AM »
Some Berks county guns WILL have a definite hollowed out shape all the way back around the end of the lock panels, but I have not seen it anywhere else.. at least not as a regular feature.  Now, there may be other 19th century gun types that do this, it's not a period I'm familiar enough with, outside my favored regions.  Otherwise, it should generally remain relatively flattish from the wrist to the lock panels.

This Henry Mauger gun is a little bit hollowed out around the tail end of the lockpanels, but not nearly so defined as what you get with a small round file.  And you can also see the concavity runs up on top alongside the tang and as it passes the lock bolt head it bends down and "twists" to get it down near the barrel flat.


This is a fairly common trait that I have seen on different Berks county guns.   ;)
« Last Edit: April 18, 2015, 11:00:41 PM by Stophel »
When a reenactor says "They didn't write everything down"   what that really means is: "I'm too lazy to look for documentation."

Offline Stophel

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #12 on: April 18, 2015, 07:48:35 AM »
Tom mentioned the "platform".  On the Christian's Spring/Albrecht type guns, such as the Edward Marshall rifle or "Gun 42", there will be a very definite triangular raised flat panel extending rearward from the breech tang, rather than rounding this all off, they used it to make the carving stand out even more.   ;)
When a reenactor says "They didn't write everything down"   what that really means is: "I'm too lazy to look for documentation."

Offline sz

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2015, 08:15:27 AM »
Not every smith in the old days did it the same way, just as every smith today doesn't do it the same.
Here are a few I have done.  I like how they look, but it doesn't make me right and someone one else wrong.





Offline Rich

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #14 on: April 18, 2015, 09:12:54 AM »
If you drop the head of the lock bolt down a bit and run the bolt at a bit of a angle into the lock bolster, you can get the extra room needed to make the wood flat and even with the corner of the barrel. The problem then is that the lock bolt head will not lay flat against the side plate. The solution is to spot face the lock plate.

Offline Dave B

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #15 on: April 18, 2015, 05:44:15 PM »
I saw a butt stock at the CLA Show years ago that Herschel House had that reminded me of a Honaker style of architecture in the transition from tang to lock bolt area. Here is one of the Attributed to Abraham Honaker rifles that was at auction on Cohans site.
 

Dave Blaisdell

Offline Acer Saccharum

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #16 on: April 18, 2015, 06:02:13 PM »
Clearly, that's just WRONG!   :D
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Offline E.vonAschwege

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #17 on: April 18, 2015, 06:38:41 PM »
I saw a butt stock at the CLA Show years ago that Herschel House had that reminded me of a Honaker style of architecture in the transition from tang to lock bolt area. Here is one of the Attributed to Abraham Honaker rifles that was at auction on Cohans site.


That's a very neat rifle!  That has the unique bevel/flat section ahead of the lock panel that parallels the barrel instead of tapering into a round section. 
Former Gunsmith, Colonial Williamsburg www.vonaschwegeflintlocks.com

Offline D. Taylor Sapergia

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #18 on: April 18, 2015, 06:56:15 PM »
Threads such as this are very healthy.  With input from various contributors regarding a particular architectural feature, a person can first, gain insight and education, and secondly, choose what suits them and their building approach.
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Offline PPatch

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #19 on: April 18, 2015, 07:21:09 PM »
Threads such as this are very healthy.  With input from various contributors regarding a particular architectural feature, a person can first, gain insight and education, and secondly, choose what suits them and their building approach.

Well said Master Taylor. And that is what I am doing, soaking up the knowledge this thread is rich in. This is information you can use!

dave
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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #20 on: April 18, 2015, 08:33:45 PM »
Threads such as this are very healthy.  With input from various contributors regarding a particular architectural feature, a person can first, gain insight and education, and secondly, choose what suits them and their building approach.

Well said Master Taylor. And that is what I am doing, soaking up the knowledge this thread is rich in. This is information you can use!

dave

As am I.  Thanks to everyone offering up the hard won knowledge.

Offline Acer Saccharum

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #21 on: April 18, 2015, 09:08:05 PM »
Shall we consider making a tutorial out of this?
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Offline Nate McKenzie

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #22 on: April 18, 2015, 09:39:15 PM »
Yes,by all means!

Offline Dave B

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #23 on: April 19, 2015, 12:34:34 AM »
Here are a couple more shots of this atrib. Honaker piece.



Dave Blaisdell

Offline davebozell

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Re: Wood shape around the barrel tang
« Reply #24 on: April 20, 2015, 01:44:11 PM »
I would also like to see this added to the Tutorial section.  There has been some very good information added by everyone that I am sure will be helpful to many of us.  Details like these are what seems to "make or break" a good longrifle, yet there don't seem to be a lot of pictures and sketches "out there" to reference.