Bench Rest Rifle (Project 30)

I built this light bench gun for myself in 2017. I have been strictly an offhand shooter all of my life, but at age 80 years old and a severe case of vertigo, I found shooting off-hand too much of a challenge. My son told me rather than stop competing try shooting from the bench. I have been competing with this gun for the last three years and doing very well.

This rifle is built in the style of a New England rifle.

The rear trigger is angled back like a German Jaeger.

The patch box is typical of a New England box, the engraving is copied from an original New England rifle.

The engraving is my own design.

The checkering pattern was copied from an original New England gun.

The barrel for this gun is a 45 caliber Douglas barrel that somebody gave me 50 years ago. I never thought I’d be using this barrel for myself but it certainly filled the bill. The nose cap for the stock is solid black cow horn.

The front end of the trigger guard has a little tip extension, same as the original NE rifles.

The inlay on the cheek piece and wire are sterling silver. The design is copied from an original Silas Allen Rifle.

Shooting with Olympic style sights was a new experience for me.

When the rifle was finished, I had my good friend, Harley Grice from Vermont, come to my range and help me sight it in. We are both lifetime off-hand shooters so this was a new experience for both of us. After we settled for the correct powder charge and patching, we felt the rifle was sighted in and ready for a shooting match. We both fired five shots, my target is the one on the right and Harley’s on the left.