Melchoir Fordney Longrifle,
.50 caliber, 44" swamped octagon barrel,
flint lock, curly maple, engraved brass trim, raised carving,
signed W. G. Shipman
Part Number: AAU-133
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This extraordinary flint .50 caliber longrifle bears the signature of W. G. Shipman, whose fine longrifles are highly collectible, and appreciated for their quality, artistic merit, and correct details. This rifle is patterned from antique rifles by Melchoir Fordney, and is faithful to the originals. Gunmaker M. Fordney was active during what is considered the Golden Age of the American Longrifle. This highly talented gunmaker was murdered in his gun shop in 1846 by John Haggerty, a religious fanatic that decided to cleanse Fordney of his sin, and the trial is well documented.

This lovely longrifle has the appearance of being an original. The burnished brass furniture has just begun to develop a natural matte patina finish from age. The patchbox and brass furniture are very expertly engraved in a traditional style. Photos and details of the antique rifles this is patterned from can be found in Joe Kindig, Jr's book Thought on the Kentucky Rifle in it's Golden Age, our #BOOK-TOK-RGA. The stock is a lovely piece of tiger striped sugar maple, hard, and dense. It is an ideal choice for the delicate raised carving, and fine inletting. Trigger reach is 13-3/4", to fit today's average shooter. This fine rifle weighs 7.5 pounds.

The .50 caliber 44" long swamped barrel makes this longrifle graceful in appearance, and balances well offhand. Cut rifled by the Getz Barrel Company with seven round bottom grooves with a slow twist for a tightly patched round ball. The barrel is retained by the stock by four small wedge keys. Keys are correct and traditional even without a hooked breech. The top flat of the barrel is engraved W.G. Shipman 2013. The barrel is finished to a smooth chocolate brown. A flat top rear sight is dovetailed 12" ahead of the breech. A silver blade front sight is dovetailed 2" behind the muzzle, and the base is filed flush with the flats of the barrel and soldered in position. The front sight cannot be moved, and if you choose to shoot this rifle, all adjustment must be made with the rear sight.

Beautifully decorated, the curly maple stock is stained a violin red and finished with a satin smooth varnish. The wrist of the rifle is offset from the comb by a line of raised carving. The carving is well executed with smooth clean backgrounds and crisp clean lines. The top flat of the brass buttplate is neatly hand engraved. A silver oval thumbpiece inlay is ready for your initials. The tang is neatly engraved, along with the domed head of the bolt that passes through to the trigger plate below.

The "cyclops horse" brass patchbox is copied from an original Fordney rifle. The inletting is near perfect, with four piercings, and engraved in the same style as the original. The engraving is neatly cut with crisp clean lines, and shaded for contrast. A button in the toe is used to release the latch to open the patchbox to reveal a deep cut cavity to store extra flints. An inscribed wave pattern accents the toe line from the buttplate to the rear trigger, which is also correctly copied from original Fordney rifles. A silver tear drop shape inlay decorates both sides of the wrist directly behind the lock panels. A silver moon inlay on both sides decorates the area directly in front of the panels.

Our bottom view shows the engraved toeplate, which is perfectly inlet. The triggerguard also has octagon flats on the bow, and on the mounting tabs on either end, to echo the octagon theme of the barrel. The trigger guard is neatly engraved and correctly mounted with a pin in the front and rear. The ramrod pipe skirt is hand engraved exactly like an original. Raised carving decorates the forearm directly above the ramrod entry pipe. It transitions to incised carving that flows forward to accent the forearm. The four barrel keys are surrounded by silver diamond shaped inlays. The handmade ramrod pipes have octagon flats accented with rings on both ends. The wooden ramrod is fitted with an iron tip threaded to accept 10-32 cleaning and loading accessories. A beautiful handmade chevron muzzle cap protects the end grain of the stock.

The cheek is inlaid with a silver oval that is neatly engraved with a federal eagle. Silver tear drop inlays decorate both sides of the oval inlay and are also neatly engraved. Swirls and scrolls of rococo carving decorate the buttstock. The raised carving appears bold due to the well cleaned background. The attractive brass sideplate is inlet flush with the side panel. The sideplate is hand engraved with the same pattern as an antique rifle. Two domed lock bolts mount the lock and are neatly engraved.

This Jim Chamber's Classic Ketland flintlock is perfectly positioned with the flash fence at the rear of the barrel. The graceful gooseneck cock swings in a wide arc. The lock is finished to a silver gray tone. The plate, and cock are hand engraved with traditional designs. The plate is marked SWEITZER. We recommend our 3/4" knapped English flints for best performance. The stainless steel vent liner is directly above the center of the flash pan, high enough to serve as a window on the hottest part of the flash. If your flint longrifle suffers from that infamous slow whoosh-bang ignition delay, study the work of today's best gun makers, and position your vent well centered on the pan, high above the bottom, to serve as a window on the center of the flash. The double set triggers are tuned to fire set or unset.

This finely made longrifle is an excellent example of an Melchoir Fordney style longrifle. Mr. Shipman's fine longrifles are contemporary American folk art of the best quality made today. We are delighted to receive and offer consignments of this quality. The lucky buyer will own a treasure that will last a lifetime, and his heirs will raise toasts to his good taste, far into the future. Order it for a ten day visual inspection. You will be delighted. Else if it does not fit you, return it in unfired condition for same-day refund. Postage is your only risk, when you order any one-of-a-kind gun from Track, whether new, used, or antique.

Ready to order? Click VIEW CART in the upper right of the screen, review items and quantities, then click CHECK OUT. Enter your name, address, and billing information for prompt shipment. Or, PRINT your order after entering your address, attach your check or money order, and send it by mail. Shipping cost is displayed after you enter your address.

Our web site displays actual in stock status, up-to-the-minute price, and shipping cost to every address in the USA and MOST OTHER COUNTRIES. International shipping cost for extra long or heavy parcels are determined after we weigh the parcel.

Ten day inspection begins at delivery. Send your approval. Else return it for same day refund, if not delighted. Postage is your only risk.

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Track's Catalog 18,
Out of Print
Please use our FREE on-line catalog and web site.
Track's Catalog 18, Out of Print Please use our FREE on-line catalog and web site.
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Elk River, MN 55330-1773

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