Saturday, March 26, 2016
A Custom Fox Sterlingworth
I came across some photos of a custom Fox Sterlingworth that I made a long time ago. It was a 1913-vintage Philadelphia gun that had had a pretty rough paper route, but the bores were mint and it was tight on face, so I decided to make it into something a bit nicer. After I annealed the case-hardened parts and consigned the wood to the scrap pile I went to work with the hammer and chisels. Obviously, I didn't go the "standard custom Fox" route and file the fancy-back into the frame. I wanted to do something a bit different, hence the false sideplates. I know, false sideplates on a boxlock gun aren't all that uncommon but these are not simply ornamental. I incorporated Scott-style crystal cocking indicators, which are glass windows through which the tumbler shows when the gun is cocked. The hitch is that the tumblers in a fox don't protrude beyond the rear edge of the frame when the gun is cocked, but the indicator windows are well behind the rear of the frame. Each sideplate contains a spring-loaded, gold plated "false tumbler" that, due to the geometry of its pivot, parallels the movement of the actual tumbler. I also modified the hinge pin area to mimic the early Sterlingworth "pin guns", fabricated a new triggerguard, toplever, safety slide, screws, etc. I stocked it in a georgeous piece of English walnut and had Ken Hurst engrave it before I did the metal finishing. I did this gun long before this blog existed and I don't have too many construction photos.
Here is the actual gun as I got it.
These are the "after" photos.
Here's a close up of fence area.
Here's a video of the cocking indicators' function.