Colonial Williamsburg Gunsmith DVD


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BullRunBear
April 8, 2010, 12:22 AM
Many years ago I had a VHS tape called “The Gunsmith of Williamsburg” which showed Wallace Gussler, the master gunsmith at Colonial Williamsburg, making a flintlock rifle from scratch. I saw the rifle on display at the gunsmith shop and it is a gorgeous piece. I wore out that tape and couldn’t find another. Finally, last year Colonial Williamsburg got smart and released it on DVD. It’s a decent transfer especially when you consider that the original was from 1969.

I am mechanically challenged, to put it mildly, and will never build anything more than a fully inletted kit. So it was fascinating to see someone start with a plank of wood, an iron bar, and some brass and turn them into a beautiful rifle. The narrator is David Brinkley (God, do I miss his news reports) with that Brinkley cadence that keeps your interest.

It shows forging the barrel, rifling and finishing it, casting and fitting the brass parts, tempering the springs used in the lock, shaping and finishing the stock, proofing the barrel, engraving the metal and carving the stock and much more.

The DVD isn’t just a how-to piece, it also mentions that this is hard work that takes weeks of time to complete. For people who never work with their hands and think computer speeds are the norm, this is an eye opener.

The DVD is available from the online Colonial Williamsburg store. I got my copy from Amazon to avoid the shipping charges.

Just in case anyone is interested.

Jeff

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messerist
April 8, 2010, 06:00 AM
Dittos on the video. I wish I had a dime for everytime I've watched the Gussler video. I'd have a bunch of dimes! Showed it to my youngins' a few weeks ago and they were mezmerized! Get em' started young!

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