Frank Wesson Midrange & Sporting Action
The Wesson Midrange falling-block rifles were even more rare than their long-range counterparts. Certainly less than 25, and probably less than 10, were made. The basis for this reproduction was original serial #2 (shown above), which I owned for 3 years while I slowly took dimensions from it.
The breechblock and extractor arrangement are similar to the long range. The center-hung hammer hits a 15° upward-angled firing pin, which has been bushed to accommodate modern cartridges. A rebound feature has been incorporated into the hammer, to eliminate the necessity of going to half-cock before opening the action.
The receiver is machined from a solid piece of 8620 steel. The lever, hammer, and trigger are also 8620, with the hammer and trigger being provided color-case hardened. The firing pin is S7 shock-resistant tool steel. The main spring is electropolished 1095 steel.
Actions will be in the white only. External parts will be hand-polished to a 400-grit finish, but final polishing, and any heat-treating or bluing, will be the responsibility of the customer.
I was hoping to keep the price to less than the long range, due to a lower parts count, but unfortunately three factors conspired to push the price up. First there is the complexity of the receiver itself, and the many assorted setups (much more than the long range) required to machine it. Second is the amount of wire EDM work, which I have to sub out (the breechblock opening, the extractor cut, the slot in the extractor, and the entire hammer contour are all EDM wirecut). Third is the amount of hand work on the receiver, even after it is entirely machined.
Price - $1795.00 Call or email for estimated delivery times.
|The completed rifle pictured here was built by Roger Ferrell of Fayetteville, GA. Photographs are courtesy of Morris Hallowell of Hallowell & Co., Inc.|