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Old 02-15-2011, 05:41 AM
Beartooth Regular
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 29
New life for an old pup

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Many years ago a friend at work introduced me to chuck hunting. We would travel all the back roads of NJ (yea they have back roads) taking me to his favorite farms to help control the chuck population.
He let me use an old low wall 1885 22K hornet that he put together from pieces. The barrel had seen life on other rifles and still had all the screw holes as proof. The stock was a left hand that consisted of an origional stock with a cheek piece added. the scope was one of the old long brass target scopes with a small eye relief. When it was chambered the ejector was not installed. I carried a brass rod to get the spent shell out.
He gave me the rifle on an exrended loan. After a few years he asked for the rifle back it seemed that the scope was worth quite a bit and he needed some cash.
Well, I moved and he retired, life went on. I always missed him and that old gun. After a few yrs he moved to within miles of me and we started fly fishing together. When he came to pick me up he told me that he had hunted my property 50 yrs ago when it was an active farm. He came over one day with the old rifle and a tasco scope and said, he was tired of it sitting around his house not getting used.. A month later I found out that he had terminal cancer and died. That rifle sat in my closet for a while, we moved to NC and I got busy building a farm and house. Last year I had a life altering experience open heart surgery. As I sat around recovering I started thinking about life, old Joe and that gun. I decided i needed to get that thing fixed. After a few months of searching the internet I contacted Ballard and sent it off to have the extractor installed.
They fitted the extractor, welded the screw holes in the barrel, fitted a custom scope base polished and blued the action. When I got it back I was going to get some nice wood to finish it off but instead I installed that old stock for now. Its looks great
Ballard did a fantastic job on my rifle and its ready to help me control the growing varmint population on our farm. I hope to pass this treasure onto my son when its time. Sorry for the long post

Last edited by Captjack6; 02-15-2011 at 07:53 PM. Reason: spelling errors
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Old 02-15-2011, 06:47 AM
Tnhunter's Avatar
Beartooth Regular
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 7,065
What a great story! I find it a perfect example of what all rifles are actually made for. Well, they're made for shooting and shooting is what you will be doing soon with that special rifle you've been kind enough to tell us about. I use a lot of different guns myself and I like the memories they all hold and make, which makes each of them an individual, among many.
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Old 02-15-2011, 11:03 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Mooresville, IN
Posts: 12,041
I hope your son is wise enough to have the same understanding and reverence for history that you've shown in telling us this great story. Guns are just inanimate objects, but some of them tie us to our past, evoking memories and emotions, just like an old favorite song might remind us of lost loves. Some people do not feel these things or understand that connection, but clearly you do, and I'm glad I'm not alone.
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Old 02-15-2011, 01:54 PM
Beartooth Regular
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 29
If he dosent I will find someone who does.
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Old 02-17-2011, 11:03 AM
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Fairbanks Alaska
Posts: 11
I own an old Ballard Patent November 5, 1851 manufactured by Marlin Fire Arms Co. Falling Block. I bought this rifle in pieces back in 1976 from a friend that received it in pieces many years before that. Somewhere along the line it had been re-barreled by A. W. Peterson of Denver Colorado with a heavy 25 inch barrel in 22 Hornet with a .223 diameter. Last spring, with the help of another friend we got the gun reassembled and now I am enjoying shooting a wonderful old rifle that shoots under an inch at 100 yards. What a joy to shoot, and think of the stories it could tell if it could only talk.
When I seen Captjack6 post on an old Ballard back to life I just had to share.
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Old 02-18-2011, 05:30 AM
Beartooth Regular
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 29
Thanks for sharing it great to bring an old rifles back to life. I am now working on a BSA Martini 12/15 I got this in pieces many years ago I sent it off to Vic Samual to convert it to centerfire and rebarrel it to 7-30 Waters
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