Rifle as Art


June 13, 2011, 05:45 PM
If you imagined a rifle, hanging above a fireplace in a nice moutain cabin as art, what rifle would it be?

Caliber isn't a big deal as the rifle is mostly for display, but points are awarded for it being a caliber capable of hunting elk sized game.

Pictures are encouraged! This all comes about from an article in a magazine I was reading that had a real nice rifle. gorgeously carved wood stock, all the metal was like a flat nickel with engravings on everything. It looked great. Then they put a plain old black leupold scope in it :uhoh:

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June 13, 2011, 05:49 PM
Something like this .54 caliber Hawken Rifle with a possibles bag and powder horns.

June 13, 2011, 05:59 PM
I would hang this one

June 13, 2011, 07:32 PM
Either a Shiloh Sharps or a Trapdoor Springfield.

June 13, 2011, 07:38 PM
My only wall hanger was my old '96 Swedish Mauser made in 1900. It wasn't as pretty as new, but the nearly 50" length with the straight grip stock and straight bolt lever was something worth looking at.

I finally gave it to my brother as a birthday gift a couple years ago, since he is more of a C&R guy than I am.

June 13, 2011, 07:55 PM
Marlin 1885 45-70 blued. I think that would look real good and practical.

June 13, 2011, 08:00 PM
A fine, custom built flintlock in curly maple wood. Those rifles, particularly the ones by our finest contemporary makers, are true works of high art. I know of no smokeless rifle that can touch them.

June 13, 2011, 08:07 PM
Well I don't have a rifle hung......But I do have my grandpa's dad's Winchester 1897 shotgun hanging over the TV that is on the mantel. Along with some vintage fishing poles. :D

June 13, 2011, 08:39 PM
+1 for the AC-130 gunner. My 1st job in the USAF was as an AC-130 mechanic.

I'm redoing a pair of gun racks, and my Arisaka Type 38 and Mosin M91/30 will rest on it, maybe my Stevens 20gauge single shot, too.

June 13, 2011, 08:39 PM

June 13, 2011, 09:26 PM
awesome guys, thanks for the recommendations thus far.

Cosmoline: I don't even know where to begin, could you please provide some of the key manufacturers you were talking about? thanks!

El Mariachi
June 13, 2011, 09:36 PM
Anyone seen the VO Falcon yet?.....





Yours, for only $820,000.00......:D


June 13, 2011, 09:39 PM
does the price include the guy holding it? because I'd think about it then.

Man, thats awesome though. Perfect example of what I was talking about! minus the crummy scope even!

June 13, 2011, 10:52 PM
Gorgeous example of the gunsmith's craft...but how would one aim it? Not drilled and tapped and no irons...some would call it a sacrilege to shoot it but others of us would call it the same NOT to shoot it. It is a rifle after all.

June 14, 2011, 12:30 PM
Cosmoline: I don't even know where to begin, could you please provide some of the key manufacturers you were talking about? thanks!

Well here's a short doc about Don Klein, one of the master smiths who revived the art. Note the masterpiece they show which took him NINE HUNDRED hours to make! A fine flintlock rifle is truly the Everest of the gunsmith's art, and it represents American craftsmanship at its finest.


A lot of the best makers have been resistant to any web presence, but here are some examples:





I certainly appreciate the art of smokeless and cartridge arms, but no mass produced firearm however fine can compete with these custom built smoke poles. This isn't simply a matter of fancifying a standard Mauser 98 receiver and adding a well-tuned barrel and choice stock. Some of these guys literally make every part of the rifle--lock stock and barrel.

June 14, 2011, 12:45 PM
Wish I had a better picture of this or even a description, but this aired on the Antiques Roadshow the other night; An old japanese flinlock. The appraiser expounded on the helmet, but didn't say much on the rifle itself.


June 14, 2011, 12:58 PM
Ok, that didn't work, it would be the Mauser about half way down the page.


June 14, 2011, 04:51 PM
A plain ole Winchester 94 is my idea of a work of art.

June 14, 2011, 09:14 PM
Cosmoline, thanks for the links, those are some incredible rifles! Black powder or no, you have to appreciate the skill involved in those details

June 14, 2011, 09:19 PM
My budget is extremely limited.

It would have to be a Mosin Nagant or whatever I could get cheap. Maybe an old unsafe damascus barreled shotgun.

June 14, 2011, 09:45 PM
The rubber band guns my sons used when they were little. They're grown men now out on their own.

June 14, 2011, 09:49 PM
kozak6 - you have to remember, this comes out of both the 'gun' and 'home decor' portions of the budget! ;)

June 14, 2011, 10:09 PM
This partial is a from a scene I shot behind glass in the FLAM Museum in Norway (historic polar expedition sailing ship). It's a real carved Krag Jorgensen rifle used by the captain or first officer to kill meat for the crew. The picture was hard to take and I almost asked the museum staff to open the case so I could shoot it full length without reflections. It's the art of northern folks with time and knife - from the Vikings to today.

Most of the ships compliment had rifles and spears in their cabins along with snow shoes and skis. Even today, Norwegians hunt meat for the table. This one stopped me cold. I'd sure like to have a similar one over the mantel. And, I'm not even a Krag fan :)

June 14, 2011, 10:43 PM
I've got a thing for nordic flair, that is awesome!

Smokey in PHX
June 14, 2011, 10:46 PM
I like the idea of a Hawken or a Model 94.

June 14, 2011, 10:55 PM
Fireplace rifle has to have some old old school class, so I would want at least a Trap Door Springfield. Front stuffer smokepole would work too.
For grins and giggles, imagine an AUG over the fireplace - doesn't that look weird?

June 14, 2011, 10:59 PM
^^^indeed it would!

I think a lot of wood is a must. sts.

June 15, 2011, 03:09 AM
Something in a flintlock, probably a replica early PA rifle or fowling piece.
After having seen some custom flintlocks and having been scared off by the stiff price tag on some, I now understand why. Guns like that, whether assembled from parts or built by hand (which is even more expensive) require a type of artistic craftsmanship that not just anyone can do. So if I'm looking for some art to hang above my fireplace even a relatively simple historically accurate 18th century flintlock replica would fit perfectly.
I'd really love to have a 1742 Long Land Bess, but they ain't that available and they ain't cheap!
However, I wouldn't keep it above the fireplace because I think the heat would dry the stock out too much.

June 15, 2011, 07:34 AM
goon ...I'd really love to have a 1742 Long Land Bess,...



Track of the Wolf also has a Bess "kit"


June 15, 2011, 11:40 PM
^^^indeed it would!

I think a lot of wood is a must. sts.

That was lost on most everyone here. I LOL'd.

Art Eatman
June 16, 2011, 11:51 AM
I once had the Jim Bridger rifle that's now in the museum at Cody, Wyoming. Good "hanger", but it belonged in the museum moreso than over the fireplace.

I have an old Schutzen rifle, ornate metal work, falling block single-shot in .22 rimfire. 30" barrel, double-set triggers. Truly neat for a hanger.

Otherwise? A long-barrel Win 92 would work. The Trapdoor Springfield or an old "Kaintuck" as well...

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