Hey there everyone. I thought I would take a bit of time and introduce you to a project I am working on... A mountain rifle kit.
These kits will be significantly different than any others offered today. Instead of stocks being produced on pantograph type duplicating machines, CNC technology will be used. These kits will combine both excellent design and precise manufacturing. The stocks and hardware will be produced in my shop, the locks will be provided by Jim Chambers and the barrels will be provided by Rice.
The design of this kit is somewhat based on the work of Whitson from Western North Carolina (refer to photo included). Rifles will be iron mounted and have 46" swamped barrels available in 32, 36, and 40 calibers. Jim Chambers late Ketland locks will be used.
As noted previously, the most significant feature of these kits is the method stock are produced. With CNC, very precise and repeatable results can be obtained. Inlets are clean and precise and in proper location relative to each other. All parts are inlet and require very little fitting. The barrel will come fit to the stock. All holes (bolt and pin) will be drilled. Stock surfaces are extraordinarily refined with little to no extra material. What this all results in is a product that has excellent design and style that can be assembled quickly and easily with little hassle.
Additional features of these rifles include tangs fully shaped tangs that extend down the length of the wrist, nicely designed iron hardware and custom set triggers designed specifically for this project. These will come fitted in custom fitted packaging to provide secure shipment.
Kits will likely be ready for shipment sometime late this winter.
Estimated time for assembly and finishing is 3-4 days for someone with little experience. Those more skilled might complete assemble in as little as 1-2 days. Guns can of course be customized to make them unique. Grease holes can be cut, a box could be added, a decorative nose cap could be poured or perhaps a silver name plate could be installed. A perfect project for those interested in a fine squirrel rifle!
A course on assembling these kits is being offered at this years Gunsmithing Seminar at WKU. Check out the following link for more details: http://www.nmlragunsmithingseminar.org/
Below are some photos of a the partially completed project. These should provide an idea of what to expect. (sorry for the marginal photo quality, I'll try to add some better ones in time)
NOTE: THE STOCK IS NOT COMPLETE, MORE DEVELOPMENT IS REQUIRED FOR ADDITIONAL INLETS SUCH AS THE FULL LENGTH TANG, TRIGGERS, GUARD AND SIDEPLATE. THESE WILL BE INCLUDED WHEN KITS ARE AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE.
I am taking pre-orders. Based on early response, I expect the first batch to go pretty quickly. Price of complete kit will be introduced at $950. This will include all the parts necessary to complete rifle. A nice quality figured maple or walnut stock can be chosen. Calibers will be your choice of 32 or 36 or 40.
To pre-order I would like 25% of the cost down and the remainder upon shipment. They can be purchased through the Kibler's Longrifles store on this website with a credit card, or through a check or money order.
If you have any interest, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org (or any of my other addresses you might have) You can also give me a call at 330-223-1775
Any questions or comments just ask! Let me know what you think!
Below are some photos showing the progression of the carving for my latest rifle. It still needs a bit of finish before it is complete, but I will add it to the sample of work when it is done. If you have any questions, as always, please feel free to ask.
Jim Kibler--maker of flintlock rifles.