Old Film - How Rifles Used to be Made - Colonial Times

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by etrain16, Jul 12, 2017.

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  1. etrain16

    etrain16
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    Okay, this feels a bit like an educational film from my grade school days - made, I'm guessing in the 50's or 60's at Colonial Williamsburg. It shows the process for two of their gunsmiths to make a rifle from scratch (yes, a rifle, not a musket). I had kind of wondered how they used to do it. I imagine it took them a long time to learn this trade well. I came across this while looking for something else and thought a few folks might enjoy it.

    I imagine @AndyinEverson might enjoy this, though I also imagine he has this on DVD already ;)

    Anyway, if you've got an hour or so to kill and find this stuff interesting, here you go:

     
  2. AndyinEverson

    AndyinEverson
    Everson, Wa.
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    Thanks for posting etrain!
    Will have to watch this when I have the time.
    Wallace Gusler is a well respected gunsmith.
    Andy
     
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  3. RVTECH

    RVTECH
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    I do (enjoy this kind of stuff) and considering I too am a fan of BP and and my recent restore of a badly rusted Thompson Renegade which is now a tack driver has given me a kick in the azz to start shooting BP a little more - maybe a LOT more.
     
  4. etrain16

    etrain16
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    I'm a little over half way through it myself. I have to say, I am very impressed how they make everything by hand - including things like the screws. No forms around really either - they seem to be shaped by hand, and by feel/memory. Really impressive skills.
     
  5. etrain16

    etrain16
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    Any photos of the restoration?
     
  6. AndyinEverson

    AndyinEverson
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    That is one of the many things that make a original longrifle look and feel vastly different than a modern replica or recreation.
    Andy
     
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  7. RVTECH

    RVTECH
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    Well no pics until get a new image site!

    IMG_06151.jpg
     
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  8. etrain16

    etrain16
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    Couldn't you upload them directly to this site from your computer? Or are they only on your hosted site?
     
  9. RVTECH

    RVTECH
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    Ill have to put them back on my computer and upload them
     
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  10. RVTECH

    RVTECH
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    Prior to restore
    IMG_06151.jpg
    IMG_06121.jpg
     
  11. RVTECH

    RVTECH
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    Well I must have done something right because this Renegade is SCARY accurate! The first shot is the one in the red from 50 yards kneeling. 2nd is the one about 2" to the right and was my fault. #3 was the one above the red (after a sight adjustment) and # 4 was the one at the one at the top after another click 'up' on the rear sight. Decided to drop down a click and set the cup at 100 yards and you see the result - It shoots incredibly flat and about the same at 100 as it does at 50. I think it lives!
    IMG_06691.jpg IMG_0668.jpg
     
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  12. AndyinEverson

    AndyinEverson
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    While a different time period 1800 +
    'Smiths like Leman , J. Henry , Derringer etc ... were using a assembly line process.
    One guy working on stocks
    Another tuning locks
    Yet another working on patchboxes

    Even in Colonial times locks were imported along with other parts.
    So please do not fall into the trap of thinking that every antique rifle or musket was all made by hand one at a time in a small one or three man shop...
    Andy
    Edit
    Not knocking Wallace Gusler or any maker then or now ... Just saying that many guns had ready made parts and were installed by the 'Smith... Much like buying a "kit gun" of today.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2017
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  13. etrain16

    etrain16
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    I figured there must have been a method for mass production - no way you could outfit an army using such slow techniques. But for those that could afford such a hand-made gun, it must have been something to treasure.
     
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  14. AndyinEverson

    AndyinEverson
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    Oh yeah .. Guns by Dickert , Gumpf , Beck , Haga , Fordney etc ... are all works of art.
    Andy
     
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  15. RVTECH

    RVTECH
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    With careful work I got most of the rust out of the inside of the barrel and around the breech and drum area and maintained essentially all of the bluing. Except for a couple small pitted spots and worn areas I still put this rifle at about 90 - 95%. Most looking at it would not even know it was it was as bad as it was.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2017
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  16. AndyinEverson

    AndyinEverson
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    You done good RVTECH!
    Andy
     
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  17. RVTECH

    RVTECH
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    Yea this ain't my first rodeo with guns - of any era!
     
  18. Flymph

    Flymph
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    Well worth an hour, thank you for sharing.

    Makes me want to go out and spend money tho, which I have conflicted feelings about.
     
  19. tac

    tac
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    And Peter Gonter.

    tac
     
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  20. Velzey

    Velzey
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    Oh my gosh, this film is one I watched when I was in the 5th grade. At Buckman elementary school in Portland. This was Right about the time I toured Benson High School and was mezmorized at all the machines. All this happened the same week. I decided hey I wanna build and work on boomsticks.
    I've looked for this film for years.

    Thanks for posting this.
     

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