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.
The original front sight is very low, just a sliver, a ‘fine’ sight. The rear sight slot, not very deep at all, the blade broken off long ago. The touch-hole is obviously rusted out but even counting the rust, it was originally much larger than anything we would use at present. Barrel lugs are in filed slots, 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?
AND THIS IS WHAT THE BLANK LOOKS LIKE AFTER IT HAS BEEN CARVED TO ROUGH SHAPE. WATCH FOR MORE PHOTOS AS THE PROJECT DEVELOPS