Archive for category gear

Rifle Build Update

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted on the rifle build progress. It’s slower going that I had anticipated, but life has a way of doing that. Basically, at this point, a lot of the metal work is done and we’ve glass bedded the stock. Next up is the fun part, at least it sounds fun to me. This week we’ll start shaping the stock into its final shape. There’s quite a bit of shaping we’re planning on doing and it should look great when we’re done. Below is a photo of the stock after the bedding process. The white material is some plastic clay used for keeping the bedding material out of places we didn’t want it.

bedded stock

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Fly Fishing In New Mexico

Just got back from a much needed vacation in New Mexico and managed to go fly fishing for the first time while there. Thanks to the good wife, she booked me a quick 2 hour trip with Robert Fellows up in Red River, where we were staying.

I can’t say enough about how much fun it was! Robert is a great guide and I managed to even hook a couple of brown trout in the process. In the short 2 hours, Robert is a great instructor and was a hoot to hang out with on the Red River with. If you’re in the Red River area, look him up.

I’m hooked as well, pun intended. I’m now on the lookout for some fly fishing gear. It’s just such a fun way to fish. The Red River valley in New Mexico is truly a beautiful place. I’m really looking to getting back there soon. I’m totally in love with the place.

Many thanks for a great time Bobby! I hope to be back again next year.

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Ever Feel Like This?

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My Marlinitus Is Acting Up Again

I’ve been a lifelong Marlin fan since I was a boy due to my father’s Marlin Golden 39A. If I had the resources, I’d have one in every caliber available. However, I don’t have the resources, much to the pleasure of my wife.

Today, I came one step closer. I managed to snag a deal on a 39A this morning to add to the other Marlins I do have. It’s a sweet little gun and everyone needs a 22 lever action right?

I picked it up from a sale that Gander was having. Evidently the guns at this sale were from a store that was flooded back east. Not sure why  our store had this sale, none the less, I fought off the 600 and some odd other buyers and managed to snag this one.

Gander said they inspected and cleaned all the firearms before the sale. Not being that much of the trusting type, I broke her down and did my own cleaning and inspection. I didn’t find any issues, but it did appear that the rifle had been shot. I probably need to pull the furniture off and see how that looks underneath.

I hope to get it to the range soon and see how it shoots. While this is a good looking rifle, I can see some differences from my dad’s 39A For one, the fit and finish is a bit looser than my dad’s. And his has some detail that this one doesn’t. Mine doesn’t have half-c0ck either. His doesn’t have the cross-bar safety like mine. I also thought it weird that Marlin would put a rubber stock end on it. I mean, its only a .22, not much worry about recoil.

But, don’t get me wrong, I’m not disappointed. It will look great next to my 30-30!

Keep your powder dry.

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Rifle Build, The Beginning

Since getting into black powder a few years back, I’ve often looked with envy on many of the custom built rifles and muskets of the other shooters and the club. “Some day,” I’d say, “When I have the money.”

The rifle partsI also thought it would be cool to actually build my own, but that seemed even more remote than buying a custom rifle. Well, eventually I was able to acquire a Lyman Plains Rifle that hadn’t really been started and I got it for a REALLY good price.

Yeah, I’m crazy. But it’s something I’ve wanted to do for a few years. Luckily, I know a master gun builder. He’s built dozens of rifles, muskets and pistols over nearly 50 years. It’s also who I bought the kit from. Keith’s father has built some beautiful long guns over the years, so how could I refuse his offer of assistance on the build?

The beginnings of the build have been him showing me the various parts, the things we should change from the kit as well as the things we have to fix from the kit. We discussed some styles and finishes and came up with a plan. I think it’s going to be a great Hawken styled rifle when we (erm, Wes) get done with with it. I’m not sure exactly how long it will take, my goal is to have it completed and sighted in before September’s muzzleloading deer season. I’m going to chronicle the build here, if anything to keep a record of the progress but also to showcase Wes’ talent.

So to start, I thank Wes for taking me along on this journey and for sharing a bit of his knowledge with me.

Keep your powder dry.

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Gear Review: Mora 612 First Impressions

Being a hunter and outdoorsman, I love good knives. I only wish I had the budget for a really great field knife. There are some sweet custom knives out there I see in the magazines that I would love to own someday. But one knife that I frequently see mentioned are those made by Mora of Sweden. Swedish steel seems to have a very strong following and their fans will tell you its some of the best steel out there. But the one differentiating thing about Mora is their affordability.

But how can a good knife be so cheap?

Mora has some great reviews, but I was still skeptical. That is until I saw Cody Lundin using one on Discovery’s Dual Survivor show on an episode. OK, I’ll bite. I’ll order one and see how they are. Besides, they’re cheap. If it isn’t any good, I haven’t wasted a lot of money on the thing.

So I ordered the Morakniv Classic 612. From what I could tell, Cody had the Classic #2, but I liked the finger guard on the 612, just for a little more safety. I read through all the reviews and knew what to expect.

Upon its arrival, I immediately checked the sharpness of the blade. Not bad. I could feel a little bit of roughness like it just needed some honing, but it went through a piece of paper OK. The first thing one notices is the difference in the bevel on the blade, it’s much wider than the short bevels of most American knives, more on this in a moment. The next thing I noticed was how good the knife felt in my hand. The handle was perfect for me. It has a great feel. The only thing I was initially disappointed in is the sheath. They aren’t giving away anything there and probably why their knives are so inexpensive, there’s nothing in that sheath. It’s made of some very thin plastic. The other noticeable thing is that the top of the knife is very rough and unfinished. Most people clean that up some, from what I’ve read.

The first thing I used the knife on was the pheasant and quail from my last hunting trip. I used it to clean the birds when I got home. It did a good job, but cutting through the wing bones seemed to rough the edge up a bit more. The shape of the knife blade is perfect for cleaning up small game. I don’t think it would do well on large game like deer, as the blade feels a little light for that kind of work. But I could be wrong there, we’ll have to wait and see. If you do your own butchering, it might do well for deboning. Maybe. I’ll need to ask my buddy that does his own butchering.

After I finished with the birds, I took a stone to the blade. This is where that bevel really comes in handy. This was one of the easiest knives to sharpen. Since the bevel is so wide, it easily lays across the stone, making it a breeze to sharpen. And it really takes an edge. After a few passes on the stone, it went through a piece of paper like butter. Easy sharpening is a big plus for me there.

So that’s the first impression. There’s some good things about it. It takes a great edge and its very affordable. The sheath is flimsy and the knife blade feels a little light for any type of heavy duty field use, but I really haven’t put it through its paces there yet. I’ll post some updates as I use this more. But really, for the price, less than $20 shipped, not sure you can really go wrong with this.

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Going Primitive

After watching the Discovery Channel’s “I Caveman” reality show last summer, my wife and I became intrigued by their use of an Atlatl. It was introduced to the show’s participants by a man named Atlatl Bob. The wife decided she wanted one. A few months go by and at the Fall CTAGA Rendezvous, I met a man named Tomy White how was selling his wares. He’s a leather worker who had a blanket set out with various bags, gourd canteens, etc. Oddly enough, he had an atlatl and an assortment of darts. I got my wife to come over and Tomy gave her a demonstration. Shortly thereafter, the deal was struck.

Well, we picked it up the other day. Tomy did a nice job on the atlatl and he gave us some lessons on throwing. He also showed his sling throwing technique.

And needless to say, we did some throwing on the Friday after Thanksgiving while out at my wife’s family Thanksgiving get together. Below is me making a toss. I do apologize for the video quality, it was just off my camera and it was very windy.

Here is one of my brother in laws taking a throw.

And here is Tomy himself throwing his.

And if you’re interested, you can look for Tomy at area Rendevzous in the region throughout the year. Or you can contact him directly.

Tomy White
3855 SW 120th
Augusta, KS 67010
(316) 775-6237

 

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