Even starting with a pre-shaped stock leaves plenty of room for artistry in a custom rifle project.
by Dominick Pisano
My long time stock turner retired several months ago and sold his business and patterns to an old protege of his. At least I knew where the business was going. That’s the good news. Unfortunately, illness and unexpected surgery caused delays in taking on work. What a bummer. Meanwhile, I am in the process of trying out another firm to do some of this work for me. After going through the Internet for several days I decided on one located in Washington state. The person I found has a terrific reputation and I have known of him for many years. His web site is excellent and spells out in some detail everything one needs to know about his work and proficiency. Subsequently, I sent out two projects along with appropriate blanks just to see the quality of his work.
The first was a two piece project for a Martini M12-15 along with my own pattern. It was returned several weeks later and the machining was excellent. The other project was for a pre-64 Winchester M70 that I was building for my son. It was a beautiful piece of English walnut, however, there was one serious caveat to consider. The stock turner’s web site clearly stated that the exterior of his stocks are turned oversize to allow for individual tastes and design concepts to be incorporated. This is an excellent idea and one that I have no quarrel with. The problem was the machine stock was returned with several features which I do not care for but I fully expected that. Let me explain.
Read more in our March 2012 issue. Back issues are available.
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