Friday, April 30, 2010
I mentioned the Contemporary Longrifle Association's new journal, American Tradition in an earlier post. I'm proud to say that I had a hand in the production end of this new journal. With 48 full color pages plus the covers, this journal is another great reason to join the CLA. American Tradition will be published twice a year, but you can't buy the magazine. You have to be a member of the CLA to get it.
The photo here shows the cover and several of the spreads. It is full of photos of contemporary work plus many antiques that inspire contemporary artisans.
For more information, read my review in the May/June issue of MUZZLELOADER.
Thursday, April 29, 2010
The May/June issue is getting to some mailboxes this week. If you don't have yours yet, please be patient. We don't have any control over the delivery. This issue's cover is a great painting by Robert Griffing entitled The Delicate Balance of Honesty. We're proud to be able to use Griff's work on our covers. More details and color photos of this issue will appear here in the next few days.
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Linda and I had an ordeal getting home from the Fort Frederick trade fair, and so lost most of yesterday to collecting baggage in Little Rock and other related issues. The good news is that we retrieved the bag, and it had not been messed with. That's good since there were some things in there that I had to send home in a checked bag.
The Fort Frederick Fair was great. Barely rained a little through Saturday. We didn't get to go back on Sunday. Saw lots of old friends, met several new ones, and saw lots of great stuff for sale. I'll be showing some of that in the days to come.
I met Kim Thomas and Pat Livengood this year. They use the business name of Masters in Wrought Iron (you can google that name). One of the other sutlers at the trade fair urged me to stop at their tent and check out their work. I'm glad that I did, because I met two nice guys who do excellent blacksmithing work. And, it turns out, that over ten years ago we published one of Kim's tips in our "Gather 'Round the Stove" column. Neither of us could remember what it was about.
The item in their tent that really captured my attention was this small brazier that Kim created based on images of original French braziers. It's a beautiful piece, small and fairly compact, and perfect for a small tea kettle or similar sized kettle. Kim and Pat make all kinds of utensils and do a nice job on them. I'm planning to write a review of some of Kim and Pat's work in a future issue of MUZZLELOADER.
Thursday, April 22, 2010
A couple more photos of past fairs at Fort Frederick. I believe this was 2008. The top is another view from the top side of the sutlers' area. The log house in the bottom photo is the gift shop and offices. I've been to this event twice and thoroughly enjoyed it.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Linda and I are going to the Fort Frederick Trade Fair this week. We plan to be there Thursday, Friday and Saturday. These are some photos from past years. The top is the fort from the uphill side of the sutlers' area. The middle shows part of the participants' camp in the lower field. The bottom shows the front gate of the fort with a small military encampment outside.
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
My father-in-law, Ernest Cook, has been muzzleloading longer than I have. Ernest, known to the grandkids and to many at the hunting camp as Pop, got to go to Kansas with friends and hunt turkeys last weekend. He took his Kit Ravenshear English sporting gun with it's 20 gauge smooth barrel and popped this gobbler. This is a great little flintlock half-stock with a hooked breech and a rifled barrel that can be switched out with the smooth bore. I've seen him shoot a deer between the eyes with the rifled barrel. I think this is his first turkey with a flintlock. Way to go, Pop.
Monday, April 19, 2010
Got a chance to shoot the Clay Smith "trade rifle" again last week. I shot 10 shots at 25 yards, from a rest, trying to show what the rifle would do. I know there are plenty of guys who can shoot better than I can, but I was pleased with how the rifle shot. The Long Hammock barrel loaded smoothly and shot well.
The top photo shows the first 5 shots. I called the one that went high as soon as the gun went off. There was a slight hesitation in ignition, and I obviously started to move before the ball had cleared the bore.
The lower photo shows all 10 shots. Still just one flier. The center-to-center spread on the other 9 is about 1-1/8 inch horizontally. I don't know that I can shoot any better than that. I still need to file the sights to get the point of impact up a little, but that's easy enough.
Friday, April 16, 2010
Found this one in a Jefferson, Texas, antique shop a couple of weeks ago. I thought it was a good price, so I brought it home. I sent pics to Mark Thomas in Virginia, and it struck him as the work of a skilled but unrefined craftsman, perhaps one who was also limited in the tools he had to work with. It has oak doors, poplar (?) back and a pine top. The main body of the cabinet is 13" tall.
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Since I have a Clay Smith rifle and pouch, I though it only appropriate to get one of his horns to complete the set. Clay finished a batch of powder horns this spring, and I chose the one shown. It is a screw tip with a turned walnut base. The overall length is about 15". I haven't paired it up with the pouch yet, but will soon.
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Ken Scott brought me this shot snake at last year's CLA show. The brass spout was made by Chris Gilgun about ten years ago. He made a few, since he was already making one for himself, and sold the extras. The spout was duplicated from an 18th century painting that Chris saw. In the painting, the spout of a pocket flask was sticking out of a hunter's pocket.
The spout sat around for a number of years, waiting on me to make the leather snake. A few years ago I sent the spout to a friend who did excellent leatherwork and asked him to make the leather body. It sat around his place for a couple of years, during which time he was actually getting out of the leather working business. I finally contacted him again, and he returned the spout.
I then talked to Ken Scott about making the snake and sent him the spout. He did a great job of making the snake and delivered it last August.
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Pete Hutton, better known for his powder horns and pouches, made a few duck calls several years ago. I first saw them at the Horner's annual show when they really weren't for sale. Later, at the CLA show, he let me buy one. This one is curly maple with a turned horn end-piece that holds the double reed. The end-piece is threaded like a screw-tip powder horn so I won't be losing it in the beaver pond. One of Pete's horns was shown on this blog in December 2009.
Friday, April 9, 2010
This is a pinch jug that Linda says I brought home to her from an event. I'll have to take her word for it, since I can't remember. I also don't know who I bought it from. The base is marked and dated: "4-8-02, Wisconsin Pottery, Columbus WI" and has block initials "E * A *" pressed into the bottom. It stands about 6" tall.
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Here's another pocket horn I bought from Mark Odle years ago. It is marked as made in 96. I used to see Mark at a lot of events, and made a number of small purchases from him. This one is just plain and measures 5-1/2 to 6 inches, depending on how I measure the length.
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
I purchased this knife from Jeff Wardwell at the Fort Frederick Trade Fair in 2007. It was reviewed, along with some of Jeff's other knives, in "Prime Possibles" in the July/August 2007 issue. Jeff lives in Belmont, New Hampshire. This winter, I did some shaping on the walnut handle and some light aging. The blade measures 6", and the overall length is a touch over 10".
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
This small horn was made and engraved by Mark Odle in 1992 and repaired by me this spring. I found it this winter with some other items in the workshop. Over the years, it had developed a crack. So I removed the base plug, burned a couple of holes in the side, put some hide glue in the crack and used copper wire to pull it together. Then I replaced the base plug and liberally coated the crack and the plug with beeswax. Good as new. The horn, minus the spout plug, measures 3-1/2".
Monday, April 5, 2010
I received a package over the weekend from long-time subscriber Walter "BigPaw-Paw" Lenamon, from down in central Texas. Walter was inspired by reading T.C. Albert's "Shootin' Hoops" in the March/April issue, so he gathered the tools and old barrel hoops and fashioned some arrow points. Walter said, "The instructions that Mr. Albert gave in the article were very easy to follow." The two points in the photo were in the package from Mr. Lenamon.
Thanks, Walter, for the points. You did a fine job.
Thursday, April 1, 2010
I had forgotten about this knife made by Bob Harn of Florida. My son, Justin, bought it from Bob three years ago at the CLA show. Our friend, Daniel Casey, did the aging and engraved J.W.S. on it. When Justin was home recently on spring break, it came to my attention again, and I took photos of it. Neat 18th century style knife.