Artistry in wood, steel and brass

I recently stumbled upon the Web site of Bill Shipman, a rifle-maker in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.  He produces reproductions of 17th- and 18th-century muzzle-loading weapons.  I was stunned by his attention to detail, careful selection of wood, and the level of ornamentation in the fittings.

Here are just four examples of his work, taken from his gallery. Click each image for a larger view.

Isn’t that great workmanship?  There are dozens more images, particularly in the detailed galleries for each weapon.  Highly recommended viewing.

If I could afford one of Mr. Shipman’s rifles, I’d already have my order in!  I can’t, I’m afraid . . . but a man can dream, can’t he?



  1. You know, I bought a Hawken kit once, and sat on it for two years. Then one time, I got a wild hair, and just did it. It didn't turn out so bad, and all with hand tools as well. I did it so everything was tight and smooth. I hunted with it for a couple of years, but I never even saw intended game while trying. It's amazing how many blacktail bucks just wander out into the open right in front of you while you're elk hunting. Couldn't miss a paper plate at 50 yards. Dang.
    I should take it out to the range for fun sometime soon. Ohh, the Turkey shoot is Saturday. Hmm?

  2. Peter, thanks for the compliments. My Kelpie and I say G'day. Yes I actually have one. My queen is 8 1/2 and still in her prime. Bill Shipman

  3. I'm not sure if it was Larry Correia or Mike Kupari who wrote the scene in Dead Six in which one of the character was shot by a $25k customized revolver. Luckily the guy getting shot was wearing full tactical armor, but it still hurt just as much as a less expensive gun.

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