In 2009 I started a project which would involved five rifles, all the same, very contemporary, and numbered 1 of 5, 2 of 5, etc. This rifle was the prototype rifle for the project. I wanted to be sure that I could make the cherry wood as black as I wanted it. I called it my test rifle for my Midnight Lace project. I built it to see if the cherry would accept the black stain and would the cherry carve as well as I hoped. The end result was disappointment with the carving and the color of the wood. At this point I had only built the butt stock so I went on to another project.
Since that time, I have had other thoughts about it and decided to complete it with the following changes; first of all I put together a set of 28″ 54 caliber rifle barrels. The carving was not very sharp, looking more like a worn antique, so I thought I would go with that theme and antique the whole rifle.
The other big change was I built a new lock, frizzen plate, side plate and inlays, using Damascus steel to give it a very different and very contemporary look. Having done that I thought I would also make the front sites out of Damascus steel and tip them with 24k gold. There is not much engraving on the rifle, but where it is I decided to mat out the background making it blend with the Damascus steel . The finished weight for the completed rifle is 7.75 lbs. very light for a double rifle.
I’ve carried this powder horn, bag and rifle on many a hunt. This is not my best work but it is my favorite rifle.