C&R rifle over fireplace?


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valnar
January 3, 2013, 10:46 AM
So I'm buying a new house, my first one with a fireplace. It has a nice stone mantel. I know decades ago putting an old rifle above the fireplace was considered in vogue, but what about today? Is it tacky? Politically incorrect (not that I care)? Or even worse, would it be illegal since it works and is not locked up?! :banghead:

Thoughts?

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dsink
January 3, 2013, 10:59 AM
I picked up an Enfield in 303 british several years ago at a gun show for $75.00 and its hanging on the wall in our playroom downstairs in the basement. What little ammo I have for it is locked up in the safe and I did pull the bolt nose off of it so it couldnt be fired. Mainly just didnt want to walk in one day and have to face my own gun if someone ever broke it.

pockets
January 3, 2013, 11:06 AM
I had one of my flintlock rifles hanging over my fireplace for 10 years or so.
I see nothing wrong with hanging something classic/classy in your own home...it's your wall. Removing a vital but unseen part keeps the wolves at bay.
.

SaxonPig
January 3, 2013, 11:10 AM
I think a long flintlock is SOP. I once had a 458 double rifle over my mantle. I think an Ak47 would be cool.

BSA1
January 3, 2013, 11:11 AM
It is your home so why not? All of this hype about locking your guns up is waaay overplayed and designed to make you think your gun is evil. The only suggestion is avoid putting it where it would be visible from your front window and front door.

GBExpat
January 3, 2013, 11:21 AM
FWIW, sounds like a great idea to me.

I agree with dsink regarding temporarily rendering it incapable of firing.

I have a number of longguns for which there is no room in my 2 gunsafes, so I keep the bolts in the gunsafes ... idea being (as mentioned by dsink), a crook may bludgeon me with one of my own guns in my house, but he won't be able to shoot me with it.

My sister refers to my house as The Fortress, so a crook's chances of a satisfactory outcome are slim, but, as they say, better safe ... ;)

Neo-Luddite
January 3, 2013, 11:23 AM
Go for it, it's your house not Uncle Sugar's.

Sergei Mosin
January 3, 2013, 11:30 AM
I wish I had a fireplace so I could put a gun over it.

valnar
January 3, 2013, 11:32 AM
Cool...thanks.

Ramone
January 3, 2013, 11:34 AM
In a friends home, a little ingenuity and a well placed (& well anchored!) eye bolt allowed his 1903 to be displayed over the mantle securely, with out detracting from the presentation.

(he stores the Ammo separately & securely)

stonecutter2
January 3, 2013, 12:24 PM
You could always buy a drill rifle if you wanted it nonfunctional. 1903 drill rifles are pretty easy to find, and relatively cheap (though some people have reworked them into functioning and driven the price up)

gp911
January 3, 2013, 01:22 PM
Cracker Barrel restaurants usually have old guns over their fireplaces. The ones I've seen were usually old hammer doubles, some in pretty nice shape! I wouldn't mind an old musket with accessories on my mantle, personally.

Speedgoat
January 3, 2013, 01:28 PM
Personally, I'd pull the firing pin and get a second one but machine it just slightly shorter so that it looks like it will, but won't fire a round. But then again I do that with all my guns whenever I leave home...

JohnnyK
January 3, 2013, 01:33 PM
nothing wrong with it at all... but why stop at just the fireplace? I have found that curtain hold backs work really well for holding rifles wherever you want... I've got em strategically placed all over the house so if something goes bump in the night I can defend my house and family pretty fast... and I like looking at guns... what good are they just hiding in a safe? (except if there was a house fire)

statelineblues
January 3, 2013, 01:40 PM
Just make sure your fireplace vents well and the flue is working properly. Our family had my great-grandfather's civil war musket hanging over the fireplace for many years and you could see where smoke had darkened the middle of it...

tarosean
January 3, 2013, 01:52 PM
Boy I must really be politically incorrect. I still have a gun cabinet in my living room..

AlexanderA
January 3, 2013, 01:56 PM
It would depend on who your friends and family (and possible casual visitors) are. I see several issues here. First is security. Not only the gun itself might get stolen, but also someone may take its presence as an indication that there are other guns in the house. This might make you a target for a break-in. Then there is the issue of "political correctness." Some of your friends/relatives might be antigunners. Why needlessly provoke them? Some parents, for example, might not want their children visiting or playing at homes at which a gun is present. And there's the issue of possible smoke damage to the firearm. I personally make it a policy to keep all my guns well out of sight (except for a couple of antique flintlocks in my study).

mcdonl
January 3, 2013, 02:01 PM
Valnar, do yourself the favor and if you can even make it yourself. Most of my favorite wood working projects have been gun racks.

Boy I must really be politically incorrect. I still have a gun cabinet in my living room..

Your not alone. Most of the people in my area still do. Many will try and tell you that you should not own a gun if you do not own a safe.

JohnM
January 3, 2013, 02:03 PM
Boy I must really be politically incorrect. I still have a gun cabinet in my living room..

Yep! I have 2 big glass fronted ones plus hand guns in holsters, black powder horns and other gear hanging on pegs.

col.lemat
January 3, 2013, 02:16 PM
It is not invogue anymore to do it, it is tacky, most definitely politically incorrect, upsets the anti gunners plus all of the other possible reasons. So yes why not you copy cat!

valnar
January 3, 2013, 02:17 PM
This wasn't my intention when I created this thread, but lets see some pics!

col.lemat
January 3, 2013, 02:26 PM
Ok they are comming. I also have one at my sons house in Texas. But no photos form Texas

col.lemat
January 3, 2013, 02:32 PM
My fireplace - I either need more fireplaces or change the rifle weekly.

wow6599
January 3, 2013, 02:35 PM
I know decades ago putting an old rifle above the fireplace was considered in vogue, but what about today? Is it tacky?

:scrutiny:

It's timeless.....like a '63 Corvette, Marylin Monroe, 1911's, etc..

DammitBoy
January 3, 2013, 02:39 PM
Always have something that shoots black powder hanging over your fireplace!

Uncle Richard
January 3, 2013, 02:39 PM
Its your house, do what you want to do....

JohnM
January 3, 2013, 02:44 PM
Best pic I can manage.

velojym
January 3, 2013, 03:05 PM
Speedgoat = Bob Lee Swagger?

;)

Cosmoline
January 3, 2013, 03:17 PM
It always seemed odd to me that we'd stick something loaded with black powder over the best ignition source in the house. And I'm not really sure where the notion of putting your long gun up there got started. When you bring cold iron into a warm cabin you immediately get drops of condensation all over it. Maybe people took to sticking the smoke pole by the fireplace to dry it off, because it was the only place that had low humidity in the house. Or maybe the thing got started much later because there were famous paintings of guns by fireplaces. It would be an interesting topic to investigate.

The one thing I can say with certainty is it's a VERY BAD idea to put a loaded horn on the hook dangling over your fireplace ;-)

Sav .250
January 3, 2013, 04:13 PM
You said,"not that I care." A man`s house is his castle... which means, if you want it up there.......do it! If you really didn`t care, you wouldn`t be asking us though.

PRM
January 3, 2013, 05:08 PM
Always have something that shoots black powder hanging over your fireplace!

Naw, I'll pass on hanging my good muzzle loaders over a heat source. I have heard of people hanging their powder horns along with them :what: The gene pool does have a way of cleansing itself.

valnar
January 3, 2013, 05:09 PM
Well...I don't care if it is politically incorrect. I still care if it's a fashion faux pas. :)

I wouldn't want to do something that would make even gun owners go "Egads! Why did you do that?"

JohnM
January 3, 2013, 05:14 PM
"fashion faux pas" !?! So what, it's yours isn't it?

jgh4445
January 3, 2013, 05:21 PM
Seems to be a good way to end up with dried and possibly cracked wood. That is, if the fireplace is used often.

jrdolall
January 3, 2013, 05:22 PM
Twice barrel with rabbit ears over mine. I don't know if it will shoot or not as it is probably over 100 years old and came out of a relatives closet. I had the stock fixed and hung it up there.

col.lemat
January 3, 2013, 07:06 PM
Keeps my powder dry.

BSA1
January 3, 2013, 09:16 PM
Then there is the issue of "political correctness." Some of your friends/relatives might be antigunners. Why needlessly provoke them?

Why stop with guns? What about hiding the family Bible (don't want to offend Muslins). a painting of Jesus last supper (don't want to offend the Jews) and wedding photos of you and your wife (don't want to offend homosexuals)?

DammitBoy
January 3, 2013, 09:27 PM
Don't forget to hide the booze from your bible thumping friends...

Crash_Test_Dhimmi
January 3, 2013, 10:16 PM
I have a lee enfield no4 mk1 over my mantle, with bolt removed and hidden away somewhere obscure

ArcherandShooter
January 3, 2013, 11:43 PM
My Hawken over our living room fireplace...

177117

JVaughn
January 4, 2013, 12:02 AM
Boy I must really be politically incorrect. I still have a gun cabinet in my living room..


Yep! I have 2 big glass fronted ones plus hand guns in holsters, black powder horns and other gear hanging on pegs.

I used to have a gun cabinet full, still have the cabinet but empty now due to security concerns. Sometimes I use it to temporarily hold something, right now got a .22 Marlin I just picked up in there. I just worry about easy access to would be thieves in a break in. I have a lot of time and money invested in my arms.

MagnumDweeb
January 4, 2013, 12:11 AM
I have a fireplace. I'm still in the middle of furnishing my house. I'm going with a Springrield Trapdoor 1873 once the panic settles down. I've wanted a .45-70 for sometime. Being able to launch a 400 grain bullet out to 400 yards and still have it be lethal to varmits on two legs just says badass. I will however pull the firing pin and leave it in the safe.

tarosean
January 4, 2013, 01:12 AM
I used to have a gun cabinet full, still have the cabinet but empty now due to security concerns. Sometimes I use it to temporarily hold something, right now got a .22 Marlin I just picked up in there. I just worry about easy access to would be thieves in a break in. I have a lot of time and money invested in my arms.

I do keep my more prized firearms in a safe. But I like my cabinet for ease of access. I live rural, and often have to grab a rifle to check on the livestock, etc.

bannockburn
January 4, 2013, 10:45 AM
If I had a fireplace I would hang my Hawken rifle that I built from a kit a number of years ago over it. I think it's the perfect finishing touch if you're into Early American decor.

mgmorden
January 4, 2013, 11:27 AM
Not necessarily tacky. I've got a GEW88 Mauser that is missing the bolt head. Unless I can find one of those for now its only use is decorative, so I might would hang it on a wall if I had more space.

Jim NE
January 4, 2013, 03:32 PM
I've never thought a gun over the fireplace was tacky. I think it's neat, but it could be incongruous with one of those chic all white modern decors that have splotchy frameless modern art hanging on the walls. On the other hand, who'd want to live in a place like THAT, anyway?

I might be worried about possible damage to the wood stock over time, though, if you use the fireplace a lot. When I sold guitars, I always told people that keeping an acoustic guitar in front of a roaring fire for any length of time could be bad news - it could crack the wood. It's the intense dry heat.

A wood stock is a lot thicker than guitar wood, but might still be bad in the long term. Maybe oiling it regularly would help. Most of what I see hanging over fireplaces nowadays are old single shot beaters or wall hangers - the rustic effect.

Good luck.

Kevin Rohrer
January 4, 2013, 11:42 PM
If the fireplace works and you use it for that purpose, be careful about heat drying out your stock.

She Who Must Be Obeyed wanted a wreath over our working fireplace, so I put my Pedersoli Brown Bess Short Land Pattern musket over the entranceway. It looks just as kewl. :)

HOOfan_1
January 5, 2013, 01:32 AM
My dad has had his Percussion muzzle loader over the fire place as long as I can remember...34 years at least.

How about do a Governor's Palace of Williamsburg look?

http://www.history.org/almanack/places/hb/images/palace_guns_lg.jpg

http://photos.igougo.com/images/p60356-Williamsburg-Williamsburg_Governors_Palace.jpg

http://images.travelpod.com/tw_slides/ta00/a69/f84/colonial-williamsburg-governors-palace-lightfoot.jpg

http://images.travelpod.com/tw_slides/ta00/a6a/678/the-governors-palace-colonial-williamsburg-n1-rescue.jpg

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8148/7445397726_0648bd390e_z.jpg

tulsamal
January 5, 2013, 12:45 PM
I might be worried about possible damage to the wood stock over time, though, if you use the fireplace a lot.

It depends on what type of "fireplace" you have. When we moved into our older house, it had an existing brick fireplace in the living room. Tall brick chimney up the side of the house. I called a chimney sweep to come out and inspect it. He deadlined the whole thing. Pointed out dangerous issues with both the open fireplace and the chimney. So his suggestion was to buy a heavy cast iron insert and line the chimney with a stainless steel unit. The insert isn't one of those cheap things you see at discount stores. It's really a stand alone wood burning stove that was designed to fit inside an old fashioned open fireplace.

We ended up with a very efficient unit that heats most of our house all winter. When you live on 90 acres, you have more wood than you will ever be able to use. Especially since more is always growing.

The relevant fact here is that an enclosed cast iron stove being used as an insert in a fireplace is a whole different animal. It sticks out in front of the bricks so any heat that rises on exiting doesn't heat up that area at all. And it normally has a variable fan going which pushes the heat out into the middle of the room before it rises. You can have this super hot fire going and go over to the mantle and pick up the pictures and candles that are lined up there and they are no hotter than if they were across the room. The brick faces remain room temperature. There is no smoke that gets into the room. I don't actually have a gun mounted in that area at this point in my life but I wouldn't worry about it if I wanted to do it. Actually I've been thinking about putting a large flat screen up there and I thought about the whole heat issue. A few checks while a fire was burning convinced me it wasn't really a problem.

Gregg

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