Question: Barrel Bands

Jbardon

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I’m looking to put some gold barrel bands on a black powder octagonal barrel pistol that I am building. My question is whether there is a traditional size and setup, e.g. one at the muzzle and two at the breech. Also is there a traditional width? Thanks
Jason
 

Dave London

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Humm
The mountian man down the road from you might know:thumbs up: Also are you going to the school in Trinidad..Dave
 

Jbardon

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I am in my fifth week of school in Trinidad, in fact the muzzle loader is my first firearm project and I wanted to put some flair on it. Colorado is amazing, this part of the country is addicting. The fishing is great and the hiking around here rivals what i did in Maine.
 

FANCYGUN

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I usually like to use a piece of gold .040 diameter for the thick line and .020 for the thin one. Space them the thickness of the thick wire apart.
 

DKanger

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Jason,

Had to read your posting twice to determine what you want to do. In the common vernacular, barrel bands are the metal bands that retain the barrel on a military musket.

What type of pistol are you building? That's what determines what is "traditional."

With black powder guns, traditional is determined by time, place and school. European guns of a certain time period might have barrel inlays. Generally, American guns do not have barrel inlays. A medium to fine English gun might have platinum inlays around the breech end.

If you add something to a gun that is not traditional, then it becomes what is termed a fantasy gun. If you are building a fantasy gun, then go hog wild as the barrel is an excellent canvas to practice your skills.
 

Jbardon

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Thanks for the info guys, sorry about the terminology snafu. :beat up: I will probably do a conservative "fantasy" design starting with the inlayed rings of gold as fancy gun suggested and design from there. The pistol started its life as a traditions trapper kit, the instructor suggested that if we wanted to do anything fancy that it be traditional. The more I talk to students that have done this project before, I think that he wanted to make sure that no one cammoed their pistol or something like that. I will post some pics when I get it done. Thanks again
Jason
 

John B.

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Jbardon,
You are right on about the wonderfull things to see and do in Trinidad, Colorado.
I spent more than 25 summers there at the college.
Have you driven up the the Wall area, past the lake West of town in the evening?
Turn South onto the gravel road next to the little motel just East of or before you get to the Wall.
About a mile in on that road there are usually herds of elk. deer and turkeys to see.
And the roadside is often covered in wildflowers too.
Enjoy your stay, that's beautiful country and great people.
Best.
 
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Sandy

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Trinidad is a great little city. It has a lot of history. Check out the museum to find out who some of the historical figures that lived and worked in the area. Also check out Ludlow and its dark history. Have you been to the top of Simpsons Rest? I use to go up there every evening. There is an assume view from up there. Graduated from TSJC a long time ago. John B. had dark hair. Enjoy your time there. :thumbs up:
Sandy
 
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Jbardon

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John B.
Thanks for the cool place to check out. Sounds like a great place to get some pictures for drawing study. You are very right about the people, everyone here is so nice and helpful.

Tom
Those sites are fantastic and just what I was looking for. J.W. Huddleson’s site was amazing his work is fantastic and great inspiration.

Sandy
Simpsons rest is very cool, I drove up there as soon as i got to town to get a birds eye view. I see fishers peak looming over the town every day and I can’t wait to hike that though I think it might take two days.

Terry
It’s a pistol kit from traditions the trapper model which I think is an American style. It is percussion so 1830-1860’s.

I think that I’m going to inlay a simple scroll pattern in silver on two of the top barrel flats with some text between the sight dovetails on the top and bands of gold at front and back. I’ll try to go over my sketch with the computer and post the result.
Thanks for all the input.
Jason
 
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J.Bardon
Thank you for the compliments. Almost anything goes on a gun like you have. The only suggestion I would have is to make the front band narrower than the rear band. You can put 2 in the rear and one in the front.
 

DKanger

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Jason,
Why waste gold on this project? Dead soft brass and silver wire might be more appropriate, and if you can inlay them you know you won't have any trouble with the softer gold. I use this old barrel for practice and doodling when I get a whim. The top band is brass and the bottom one is silver.

Terminology lesson.....You mentioned you were going to engrave on two of the top flats. An octagon barrel only has one top flat, left and right upper obliques, left and right side flats, left and right lower obliques, and one bottom flat. Trivia that might be on your definitions exam.:)
 

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Jbardon

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Thread starter #19
Thanks DKanger, for the terminology, I will remember that.:thumbs up: You are probably right that the gold is a waste, brass and silver are more economical. I haven't decided on a finish for the barrel yet, I was thinking browning or rust bluing. Does anyone know how or if these will affect the inlays?

Jason
 

John B.

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Jbardon,
Gold will not be colored by bluing and it won't tarnish later like brass will.
Gold for these inlay bands would be about $10.00 or less.
Why waste the labor and maybe future tarnish on brass??
Pure or .999 Silver is OK too and doesn't tarnish very easily and is still pretty cheap.

On the muzzle end hold the bands back a bit from the end of the barrel.
If you ever see high speed photographs of a bullet leaving the barrel you will notice that the gasses roll back along the front of the barrel.
These gasses contain minute parts of abrasive dust from the combustion and can slightly erode the softer metals over time and much shooting.
As you're at school and have machinery available here is the easy way.
Set the barrel up between centers in the lathe. Grind a tool to the width of the line you want. Just turn the barrel by hand and turn the tool in to just kiss into the edges of each flat of the octagon. Then cut the line to join these edge cuts on each flat with a graver. You will get good, straight barrel lines and no dig in at the corner edges.

Sandy,
We both had some great times in Trinidad didn’t we?
And I never will forget the look on your face when you thought I had shot your D. I. hat.
It turned the room to ice in a hurry!
Best.
 

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