Craft Gunmaking, No compromises, No corners cut, EVER

Saturday, December 2, 2017

A Thomas Horsley SLE

Here is a Horsley SLE that has been the recipient of some gunsmithing in the past.  Unfortunately, it was done by an individual with less than complete comprehension of the design's idiosyncrasies.  The stock had been refinished and for reasons unknown, the portion of the inletting that retains the striker bushings was removed from the right side.  This gun's striker bushings simply slip into the frame from the rear and depend upon the stock and the very inside edge of the lockplate to retain them.  The striker bores are also machined at an upward angle, meaning that the rear face of the bushings have an angled surface.  This presents no issues as long as they are prevented from rotating, which is precisely the reason for the contact with the stock and lockplates.  The stock also suffered from cracked upper horns, oil soaking at the head and someone had at one time placed a cardboard shim above the triggerbox.  This was done, presumably, so that the breechscrew would index correctly.
With nothing left to prevent the right-side striker bushing from rotating and floating back and forth, repeated blows from the hammer caused the striker to become quite deformed.  It comes as no surprise that the lockplate screw slots were also damaged.

The strikers, the bent right striker had to be cut in half to remove it from its bushing.

The stock damage

Once the finish is stripped from the head area and the soaked oil is removed, the stock repairs could begin.  As always, the repairs are performed by replacing bad/damaged wood with new, not "glass bedding" bodgery.

The repair after fitting

The lockplate screws were made in the usual fashion.

The finished job, note the beautifully chiseled fences.

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