Author Topic: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard  (Read 1405 times)

Offline Mattox Forge

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 374
Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« on: May 19, 2023, 04:26:45 AM »
I was recently studying the very nice Twigg rifle that sold in the last Poulin Auction. I think the gun is a wonderful blend of English and German styles. Twigg seems to have made at least three rifles with this type of guard that are shown in Neil and Back, some with some very German style carving on them.

The guard has me intrigued. I understand this is very much a Jager style guard, not often found on English rifles. I would like to know if anyone has an idea of how these were typically fixed to the stock. This is a 1770 vintage gun made by a fairly conservative maker, so I suspect pins would have been used, but there do not appear to be any pins. Unfortunately I did not think to ask the auction house for bottom view pictures, and the Neil & Back (1975) book does not have any either.

Postscript:

I found a description in the back of the book. It says the guard in reinforced with a steel band. Would the band be of the out side of the bow? How wide would the grip portion be? It appears to be as wide as the bow is.

Thanks
Mike








« Last Edit: May 19, 2023, 06:23:58 AM by Mattox Forge »

Offline mountainman70

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2422
  • USAF vet 1971-1972 malmstrom afb,montana
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2023, 04:47:58 AM »
Good evening. Tired as my old eyes are, if you enlarged the shot of the rear end of guard look close at the diamond lowest on the stock. There appears to be a tiny round pin hole barely visible.
The front is probably pinned in the lock mortice
Not hard to make metal lugs and fit the wood guard and inlet into stock
That's how I would do it
Best regards, Dave  8) 8)

Offline smart dog

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *
  • Posts: 6893
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2023, 05:18:28 AM »
Hi,
I think these carved wooden guards usually have a metal reinforcing strip going the length of the bow and handle on the top of the wooden guard.  I've seen some in which counter sunk and flush screws holding that strip to the guard may go through the guard and into the bottom of the stock. 

dave
"The main accomplishment of modern economics is to make astrology look good."

Offline Mattox Forge

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 374
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2023, 06:57:38 AM »
Hi,
I think these carved wooden guards usually have a metal reinforcing strip going the length of the bow and handle on the top of the wooden guard.  I've seen some in which counter sunk and flush screws holding that strip to the guard may go through the guard and into the bottom of the stock. 

dave

Dave,

By "top" do you mean between the guard and the stock? The finial/front strap appears to be steel, would this have continued around the bow on the surface nearest the trigger as shown by the red line in this image?


Or would it have been like this:


Mike


« Last Edit: May 19, 2023, 07:00:48 AM by Mattox Forge »

Offline smart dog

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *
  • Posts: 6893
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2023, 02:08:46 PM »
Hi,
Your second description is what I mean.

dave
"The main accomplishment of modern economics is to make astrology look good."

Offline Eric Kettenburg

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4077
    • Eric Kettenburg
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2023, 02:26:29 PM »
I made this thing probably 20 years ago.  I modeled the guard directly off a piece made ca. 1750-60 in Vienna by Christof Ris.  The rear of the guard is inlet into the lower butt just like a metal guard and nailed with a small pin to the stock.  I suppose you could use a screw also.  The metal overlay is also inlet into the surface of the guard but terminates before the grip return.  I've seen other German guns with wood guards but I can;t remember now if any went over and around the return - that would be a LOT more work and isn't really necessary as that portion is firmly attached to the stock with a lengthy inlet and is thick enough to withstand use.  It's mostly the bow area that needs the reinforcement.  The forward portion of the guard (where the front of the bow hits the stock) is also inlet into the stock and I believe was glued in place.  The forward 'finial' of the brass strip has a pin tab riveted and brazed to the finial just like how it would be located on a cast brass guard and the forward finial is inlet and pinned in place through the lock mortice just like a brass guard.  There is a countersunk screw through the thickened rear portion of the bow into the underside of the wrist and it's covered by the brass overlay.

I'm sure there are minor variations from guard to guard on old guns, i.e screws or pins, glue etc. but this I think is generally how it was done.
 






Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!

Offline mr. no gold

  • member 2
  • Hero Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 2654
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2023, 05:52:35 PM »
WOW, WOW AND WOW!!! Mighty fine work.
Dick

Offline Avlrc

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1334
    • Hampshire County Long Rifles
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2023, 05:59:01 PM »
@Eric, awesome work.  Looks like an original antique. Nice

Offline Avlrc

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1334
    • Hampshire County Long Rifles
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2023, 06:08:50 PM »
I had a Jaeger made 1730 & we examined the wooden trigger guard with a magnifying glass & light & it was determined it was carved out of the stock.  Were we wrong?


Offline Eric Kettenburg

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4077
    • Eric Kettenburg
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2023, 06:22:08 PM »
I had a Jaeger made 1730 & we examined the wooden trigger guard with a magnifying glass & light & it was determined it was carved out of the stock.  Were we wrong?

Maybe or maybe not.  Ron Scott may have some info to offer here, or Chris Immel if he still checks in now and then.

Phil Ackermann had a little French boy's rifle many moons ago that was pretty much entirely carved out of wood; wood buttplate, sideplate, pipes etc.  We thought the guard was also carved out of the same piece of wood, but it could conceivably have been a separate piece very tightly inlet and glued in place.  I really don't know.  There definitely was 'glue work' being used in conjunction with these wood guards and I haven't seen enough of them to offer any kind of definitive statement.

On the piece I illustrated, I used a piece of unstained hornbeam to make a sideplate (it looked almost like ivory or maybe boxwood) and a nosecap but I did carve the entry pipe out of the stock itself.  It was done as a half-stock smooth rifle, very German but with a cruder American twist, some upper Bucks or Lehigh influence.  Very much an 'imaginary' piece.
Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!

Offline Jim Kibler

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4348
    • Personal Website
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2023, 06:25:27 PM »
That's pretty awesome, Eric!  I remember the article you wrote on an original German gun you dissected and studied.  Do you still have this available?  I recall really enjoying it.

Jim

Offline HSmithTX

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 113
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #11 on: May 19, 2023, 06:59:37 PM »
Gary Brumfield has a Swiss or German rifle on his site, you can see the metal reinforcing strip in a couple of the pics.

http://flintriflesmith.com/Antiques/Swiss%20or%20German%20Gun.htm


Offline Eric Kettenburg

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4077
    • Eric Kettenburg
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2023, 07:08:30 PM »
That's pretty awesome, Eric!  I remember the article you wrote on an original German gun you dissected and studied.  Do you still have this available?  I recall really enjoying it.

Jim

You mean the article?  I have lots of stuff on some old zip discs that might as well be dog chew toys now.  I think I got the Christof Ris article scanned but I'll have to search around.
Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!

Offline Jim Kibler

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4348
    • Personal Website
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #13 on: May 19, 2023, 07:17:37 PM »
Yep, the article you wrote.  I printed out a copy years ago and may have it somewhere.  I'd bet people would really enjoy reading it. 

Jim

Offline Eric Kettenburg

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4077
    • Eric Kettenburg
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #14 on: May 19, 2023, 07:18:13 PM »
Well I have all the color dissection photos but the article itself is just a text file only.  One of the many things I've meant to get up on my site in an easy to read online fashion but just haven't gotten around to doing.  Sigh.

Here is a picture of the brass overlay on the Christof Ris rifle removed from the stock and guard.  Looks like his shop did in fact run it a little bit over the rear return, so when I built the piece above I must have been lacking ambition or lazy or both!



Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!

Offline Eric Kettenburg

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 4077
    • Eric Kettenburg
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #15 on: May 19, 2023, 07:21:02 PM »


Strange women lying in ponds, distributing swords, is no basis for a system of government!

Offline alacran

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2175
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #16 on: May 21, 2023, 02:28:52 PM »
I have seen two originals with wooden trigger guards. I don't remember any significant differences in the construction methods. Pretty much the same in the photos of others that I have seen. Shumway's Jaeger book shows a few. All have similar construction methods. Think I saw one in Wolfe's book but it is not with me.
Getting back to the Twigg rifle, His guard has a much more robust grip rail than what I have seen. Since it is reinforced with iron it would undoubtedly stand the test of time. It has. Twigg's rifle is quite elegant.
A man's rights rest in three boxes: the ballot box, the jury box, and the cartridge box.  Frederick Douglass

Offline Mike Brooks

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 13362
    • Mike Brooks Gunmaker
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #17 on: May 21, 2023, 02:36:01 PM »
Has anyone ever seen the cheek piece side of that twigg rifle?
 Also, I used to have a durrs egg fowling gun with a wood guard. It was shaped similar to a second model bess guard on a smaller scale.  Never seen another like it.
NEW WEBSITE! www.mikebrooksflintlocks.com
Say, any of you boys smithies? Or, if not smithies per se, were you otherwise trained in the metallurgic arts before straitened circumstances forced you into a life of aimless wanderin'?

Offline Mattox Forge

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 374
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #18 on: May 21, 2023, 03:19:49 PM »
Mike,
Here is the photo from the auction.


Here are a couple of links to the listing in catalogs.

https://poulinantiques.hibid.com/lot/152949527/a-very-fine-john-twigg-single-barrel-flintlock?ref=catalog

https://www.invaluable.com/auction-lot/a-very-fine-john-twigg-single-barrel-flintlock-2248-c-21e4a888b9

One of W Keith Neil's books has a couple of photos and the description I posted above in it of this gun and two other rifles that have similar guards. His books are frustrating in that he is more of a story teller than a cataloger of his guns. It is too bad that he didn't adopt Shumway's style of book for his collection. I shouldn't complain, it is better than no book, and I am glad he write the books, as without them, we wouldn't have anything.

I am making a drawing of this gun with the hopes of making a copy one day after I recover from surgery. Please email me if you would like an electronic version when I am finished.

Mike C
« Last Edit: May 21, 2023, 03:22:52 PM by Mattox Forge »

Offline Pukka Bundook

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3385
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #19 on: May 21, 2023, 05:14:34 PM »
The only ones I have seen personally had the metal reinforcing strip let in the outside of the bow and grip, flush with the wood, and looked like Eric's picture above.
yes, sometimes wood screws held the strip in place.

Offline Mike Brooks

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 13362
    • Mike Brooks Gunmaker
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #20 on: May 21, 2023, 08:02:22 PM »
Thanks for the pics, I always wondered what that side looked like. I had imagined something more Germanic. He sure has the box pointing in an odd direction. I'd like to do a full stocked version of that someday.
NEW WEBSITE! www.mikebrooksflintlocks.com
Say, any of you boys smithies? Or, if not smithies per se, were you otherwise trained in the metallurgic arts before straitened circumstances forced you into a life of aimless wanderin'?

Offline Feltwad

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 887
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #21 on: May 21, 2023, 10:37:53 PM »
Enclosed are a couple of continental sporting guns one with a wooden trigger guard
Feltwad





Offline Mattox Forge

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 374
Re: Twigg Rifle with a Wooden Trigger Guard
« Reply #22 on: May 22, 2023, 12:26:12 AM »
Thanks for the pics, I always wondered what that side looked like. I had imagined something more Germanic. He sure has the box pointing in an odd direction. I'd like to do a full stocked version of that someday.

Apparently it was full stocked when originally built.

I hadn't noticed that the patch box was so tipped up until you mentioned it.


Mortimer seems to have used a similar layout for his patch box but not as tipped up as Twigg's. Early John Manton rifles might have a similar patch box arrangement.  I can't seem to find any photos of one though to check.


Here are some more of Twigg's Germanic style rifles:






The cheek on 175 is very much in the German style


Mike