Author Topic: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build......Completed !!!  (Read 29499 times)

Offline davec2

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Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build......Completed !!!
« on: September 29, 2015, 08:55:07 PM »
A few months ago, a fellow by the name of Richard Newman got in contact with me via the Contemporary Makers site asked me if I could finish a little rifle he had started quite some time ago for his daughters.  Time, business, and life had stopped progress and he was looking for someone to finish it for him.  We met in June and I took over the project but warned him that I was in the midst of a large propulsion testing contract and would not be able to dedicate full time to the project.  He told me the rifle had languished for several years, so any progress would be to the good.

Personally, I had also started a matched set of 1/2 scale rifles for my two daughters many, many years ago that I have never finished.  And, in the natural order of things, the girls had not waited on me and are now both grown women.   So, secondarily, I wanted to do this for Richard to make up for my own missed opportunity.

At any rate, I have been working on it a little at a time, and asked Richard if I could post the work here as it might be of interest to this community.  He said to go ahead, so here goes.

It is always a bit of an issue to take over someone else's project, as you are never quite sure what the original vision was.  Also, half way through a build, there are things that have been done that cannot be undone, without completely starting over, and must just be lived with.  Luckily, Richard had done a great job up to the point he had to stop and turned the work over to me.

The rifle is 3/4 scale, suited for a child but easily handled by an adult.  I was immediately taken with the size and style.   It is a handy little rifle with an octagonal to round .45 caliber barrel.  The lock is a small Queen Ann (which I have used before and like very much).  The rest of the hardware is German silver, which I have never worked with before.  The following photos will show the rifle as Richard delivered it to me.

I will post some photos on the progress to date next time around....





























« Last Edit: January 29, 2020, 06:06:12 AM by davec2 »
"No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into a jail; for being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned... a man in a jail has more room, better food, and commonly better company."
Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1780

Offline smart dog

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2015, 09:28:56 PM »
Hi Dave,
Richard made a very nice start and you have a nice canvas on which to work your magic.   I did a couple of gun projects like yours, in which the project was already started.  One I had to trash because there was just too much wrong, the other became the Berks gun I posted a while ago.  I enjoyed the challenge of merging the original maker's and my own ideas and I felt like I was really recycling something worthwhile. Good luck and have fun with it, Dave.

dave
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Offline bama

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2015, 05:28:21 PM »
Yes a nice start and I know you will do a fine job in completing this project. Thanks for sharing and keep us posted on the project.
Jim Parker

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Offline Long Ears

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2015, 04:44:27 AM »
Dave, I have my first grandchild and he needs a new rifle bad. Would you be interested in tracing that rifle? I would be more than willing to pay you for your time. My grandson is only one year old so no big rush. Thanks, Bob

Offline davec2

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2015, 07:16:21 AM »
Bob,

Not a problem.  I will make a tracing for you.  I know where to get the lock, ram rod pipes, butt plate and trigger guard.  I don't know where the .45 caliber octagonal to round barrel came from but will ask Richard.

Dave C
"No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into a jail; for being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned... a man in a jail has more room, better food, and commonly better company."
Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1780

Offline davec2

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2015, 06:19:03 PM »
Some work toward completion on this little rifle:

Lock polished:



Lock engraved:









Butt plate polished out:



Side plate beveled and counter sunk along with making new lock bolts:



The ram rod pipes were a stock item and, although Richard did not want this little rifle to be overly decorated, I did modify the end rings on the pipes a little to make them more decorative.  The rear pipe on the left is as it came from the supplier.  The one on the right has the slight modification:



« Last Edit: January 29, 2020, 06:06:57 AM by davec2 »
"No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into a jail; for being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned... a man in a jail has more room, better food, and commonly better company."
Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1780

Offline FDR

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2015, 07:44:23 PM »
What a difference an application of talent and knowledge makes. Nice!

Offline davec2

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2015, 03:42:42 AM »
Here is the next increment of progress......muzzle cap..........I made this one out of a standard octagonal cap.........



Trigger guard polished and some file work.....this, like the side plate, will get some subdued engraving..........



Patch box.....installed but not finished or (obviously) engraved.  This part will get the most extensive engraving on the rifle.......



Some clean up work / polishing completed on the barrel.............





New tang screw made and installed..............


« Last Edit: January 29, 2020, 06:07:44 AM by davec2 »
"No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into a jail; for being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned... a man in a jail has more room, better food, and commonly better company."
Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1780

Offline davec2

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2015, 05:53:30 AM »
Long Ears,

Please PM me with your address to send the tracing to.  I will also try to make up a list of all the known parts.

Dave C
"No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into a jail; for being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned... a man in a jail has more room, better food, and commonly better company."
Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1780

Offline davec2

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #9 on: February 06, 2016, 11:07:53 PM »
OK.....started this re-work for a fellow back in October, but I told him it was going to take me a while.  Lots of other things keeping me busy over the last couple of months, but I just got back to working on this little rifle in the last few days.

The original barrel inlet (done by whoever) was not very tight over all and there were several significant gaps at various places along the barrel that were going to leave the wood razor thin in spots.  I was reluctant, but decided to bed the full length of the barrel with AcraGlass gel.  Whenever I have done this in the past, I have done it before the barrel lugs were installed.  This time, with the lugs in place and the pin holes drilled, I was concerned that I would permanently glue the barrel into the stock and make a hash out of the whole project.  Well, to make a long story short, the bedding came out fine and the stock is much stronger (and better fitting) now.  I usually bed the breach area on any gun I build, so this was not too far afield....but I was worried some.

With that step out of the way, I stared in on more engraving.  The owner didn't want too much...but not too little.  He had some opinions about the type of design elements he wanted, so I didn't really have a completely free hand here.....anyway, this is how it is coming thus far......

Trigger guard............



Toe plate.........



Side plate and lock bolt heads.........



Barrel breach decoration..........



Working on the patch box now.







« Last Edit: January 29, 2020, 06:08:17 AM by davec2 »
"No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into a jail; for being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned... a man in a jail has more room, better food, and commonly better company."
Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1780

Offline Daryl

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #10 on: February 07, 2016, 12:18:49 AM »
Mighty fine work, Dave - beautiful.
Daryl

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #11 on: February 07, 2016, 12:37:40 AM »
Great work as usual. Your engraving and precision helps drive me to get better.

Offline BOB HILL

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #12 on: February 07, 2016, 08:27:46 AM »
Coming along beautifully, Dave.         Bob
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Offline davec2

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2016, 08:50:15 AM »
Forgot to mention above, I have never worked with nickel silver before and all these mounts were brought to me with the rest of the parts.  Engraving the sheet stock (toe plate, patch box) is fairly easy and the material properties are uniform.  However, the cast parts (trigger guard, side plate) are horrible to engrave.  The material is not tough but is hard and soft in various places.  It is a colossal pain to try to maintaing a uniform depth of cut when the material goes from hard to soft and back again in a 1/4 inch !

Case hardened the lock...............



Patch box release mechanism made from small piece of spring steel with a brass tube silver brazed in place for the retaining screw.  I used a piece of a 16 penny nail riveted into a square hole in the box lid as the door catch............



Box lid and catch.............




I have half of the patch box engraving completed tonight.  Will finish tomorrow.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2020, 06:08:51 AM by davec2 »
"No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into a jail; for being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned... a man in a jail has more room, better food, and commonly better company."
Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1780

Offline oldtravler61

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2016, 06:27:41 PM »
Very nice  work as always. Thanks for the pics also. Makes making a patch box release catch simple an clear. Now the engraving excellent. Me I'm all thumbs. Thanks again!

Online smylee grouch

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2016, 06:32:22 PM »
What a visual treat. Thanks for sharing.

Offline J. Talbert

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #16 on: February 07, 2016, 08:31:06 PM »
Dave I like the few little finishing touches you have added.  ;D

I would expect the owner must be thrilled.  I know I would be.

I also like the simplicity of the patchbox release, but I was wondering what holds it in place where it pivots around the screw.  Is it soldered to a little washer that's hidden?

Great work as always.

Jeff
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Thomas Sowell

Offline davec2

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #17 on: February 07, 2016, 09:14:42 PM »
Jeff,

I should have taken another picture of the spring without the screw in place.  Behind the retaining screw I have silver soldered a piece of brass tubing the same width as the spring.  I bent the annealed spring stock to shape and then silver soldered the little brass retaining collar in place at the lower bend of the spring.  As soon as the solder flowed, I quenched the spring in brine water which hardened it.  Then I drew it back to a dark blue.  The one little screw acts as both the retainer to keep the spring in position and as the pivot for the upper hook that engages the lid catch.  It works just like a lot of originals, but you don't need the cast parts or have to saw / file/ fit parts up out of steel and then add a spring in there someplace.
"No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into a jail; for being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned... a man in a jail has more room, better food, and commonly better company."
Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1780

Offline J. Talbert

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #18 on: February 07, 2016, 10:53:08 PM »
Thanks Dave... Nice and simple.

Jeff
There are no solutions.  There are only trade-offs.
Thomas Sowell

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #19 on: February 08, 2016, 12:53:00 AM »
Wow, you've made phenomenal progress and the engraving is outstanding!

Needless to say Richard is going to be delighted!

Offline Ed Wenger

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #20 on: February 08, 2016, 02:32:14 AM »
Beautiful work, Dave......



          Ed
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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #21 on: February 08, 2016, 04:08:56 AM »
It's going to be a striking little piece when it's finished. Great job!

Capt. David

Offline davec2

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #22 on: February 08, 2016, 04:39:40 AM »
Finished the patch box engraving today.  On to the final stock shaping and carving.....


« Last Edit: January 29, 2020, 06:09:12 AM by davec2 »
"No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into a jail; for being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned... a man in a jail has more room, better food, and commonly better company."
Dr. Samuel Johnson, 1780

Offline Keithbatt

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #23 on: February 09, 2016, 07:20:08 AM »
Wow. That patch box engraving looks.... Precise.  It's really impressive.

Offline Chris Treichel

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Re: Finishing a 3/4 Scale Rifle From Mid-build
« Reply #24 on: February 09, 2016, 06:28:19 PM »
very beautiful work