Wood Butt Plate

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rt2bowhunter

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I'm fixin to restock my T/C Renegade with a maple Pecatonica replacement stock. I have been looking at 100's of pics of Hawkens. And so far haven't seen a wood butt plate. I made and fitted a wood butt plate to my old T/C stock out of a piece of scrap (Wenge). I kinda like it and was thinking about picking up a piece of osage orange to put on a Curly Maple stock.

I tried my hand at carving a few years ago. And i got tired of it and by the time i sanded it back off i was to narrow for the metal butt plate. So instead of just trashing the stock. I refinished and this butt and added this butt plate.
Looks like i gotta post a pic off my phone.
 

Phil Coffins

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Pictures of a “Hawken“ rifle with a wood butt plate would be non-existent. The way they are used means a broken stock if wood of any kind is used.
 

tenngun

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Some old guns were made with out a buttplate. This feature severs an important function on a ml. You want to protect this fragile area.
1) raw hide. I have read this was done with trade guns. Woman would take the buttplate off a trade gun to make a scraper and the gun was covered with a raw hide replacement. I have never seen this, and don’t recall a contemporary report of this and I would put this in as a reinactoism
2) add a toe plate and a comb plate made out of antler, bone or horn to stick just beyond the butt
3) flat headed nails put in drilled holes near the top and bottom
 

rt2bowhunter

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Yes i saw a pic of rawhide used with nails. I also recall T/C made a ML stock with a rubber recoil pad. Maybe these were reinforced with some type of metal.

Might be a dumb question but just how would the stock get damaged.
 

rt2bowhunter

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I had this rifle in 54 cal for a short time. Then bought a GM roundball barrel some 25 years ago. And i don't ever remember loading it without the stock resting on my boot. My thinking was and still is i'm going to hunt when it's muddy and the range has gravel around the benches. So i just started doing it that way. I do keep a clean barrel, there again i'm not storing a dirty barrel so other than snapping a few caps. I'm hunting with a clean barrel. I have never needed two shots hunting. And if i shoot after the hunt i clean it once i get home. Maybe not end of the year clean but it's pretty easy to load.


I'm not trying to argue at all. But if i keep the butt of the rifle flat and don't use that curved stock. That i agree that bottom point that's left is begging to get broke off. There's a problem.

Maybe i need a brass plate then wood If i go that route.
 

Bad Karma

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I had this rifle in 54 cal for a short time. Then bought a GM roundball barrel some 25 years ago. And i don't ever remember loading it without the stock resting on my boot. My thinking was and still is i'm going to hunt when it's muddy and the range has gravel around the benches. So i just started doing it that way. I do keep a clean barrel, there again i'm not storing a dirty barrel so other than snapping a few caps. I'm hunting with a clean barrel. I have never needed two shots hunting. And if i shoot after the hunt i clean it once i get home. Maybe not end of the year clean but it's pretty easy to load.


I'm not trying to argue at all. But if i keep the butt of the rifle flat and don't use that curved stock. That i agree that bottom point that's left is begging to get broke off. There's a problem.

Maybe i need a brass plate then wood If i go that route.
Look at enough vintage rifles, and some not so vintage, and you’ll see lots of them with a piece of the toe split off. I’ve seen a bunch of cartridge rifles and shotguns which have suffered this fate so it’s obviously not from a poor loading technique. Dropping the gun from a couple of feet will do. Sans a butt plate it’s even more susceptible. That bit of Wenge will offer quite a bit of protection.
 

Eric Krewson

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The so called "barn guns" from over 200 years ago didn't have a buttplate, Mike Brooks has probably examined more original guns than most, if I remember correctly he said broken toes on these types of old guns were just about non existent.

I guess it all depends on how you treat your gun, I dropped my TC while I was reworking the stock with buttplate off and broke a piece off the toe. On my stock the toe had a huge grain runout right at the toe that was an accident waiting to happen. You can see this runout in the picture below.

I tried gluing in a patch, it looked awful, I couldn't find the broken piece in the shavings covered floor of my shop so I added a toe plate to cover the break.

hawken toeplate 009.JPG


Another thing; you can put a renegade buttplate on your gun and file it down to fit the wood, I did that on the above rifles buttplate to make it more slender and match the toeplate. If you have straight grain in your buttstock with no runouts you can probably get away from not having a buttplate but yours appears to have the same runout as mine does.
 
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Some old guns were made with out a buttplate. This feature severs an important function on a ml. You want to protect this fragile area.
1) raw hide. I have read this was done with trade guns. Woman would take the buttplate off a trade gun to make a scraper and the gun was covered with a raw hide replacement. I have never seen this, and don’t recall a contemporary report of this and I would put this in as a reinactoism
2) add a toe plate and a comb plate made out of antler, bone or horn to stick just beyond the butt
3) flat headed nails put in drilled holes near the top and bottom
Use as hard of a wood species as you can get (Black Locust, Ebony, Osage, Wenge, ect), fire harden it, run the grain perpendicular to the grain of the stock, heavily round the edges, seal it well, and put the butt on your boot to load , problem solved. While The Hawken Brothers used metal fittings (being flashier and more durable), a great many guns have been made all over the world with wooden fittings. as far as stock design for a non-metal buttplate is concerned, a fairly wide toe with a lot of rounding will protect it. Stock design is heavily dependent on the materials the guy making the stock is intending to use.
 
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springfield art

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Some old guns were made with out a buttplate. This feature severs an important function on a ml. You want to protect this fragile area.
1) raw hide. I have read this was done with trade guns. Woman would take the buttplate off a trade gun to make a scraper and the gun was covered with a raw hide replacement. I have never seen this, and don’t recall a contemporary report of this and I would put this in as a reinactoism
2) add a toe plate and a comb plate made out of antler, bone or horn to stick just beyond the butt
3) flat headed nails put in drilled holes near the top and bottom
I have to remember the term, reinactoism. It's a perfect term for what it refers to. Thanks!
 

springfield art

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Yes i saw a pic of rawhide used with nails. I also recall T/C made a ML stock with a rubber recoil pad. Maybe these were reinforced with some type of metal.

Might be a dumb question but just how would the stock get damaged.
Dropping, falling off horse, etc.
 

rt2bowhunter

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Dropping, falling off horse, etc.
Don't have a horse :).
Here’s a stock I made all 20 ish years ago for a encore muzzleloader. I sold the barrel but loaded that barrel and time or two :). It’s just a pice of blood wood glued on with a grind to fit recoil pad.

I have been hunting with rifles and shotguns for at least 50 years and have never broke or so much as cracked a stock.

I beat the wood butt on my hard wood floor pretty hard until I thought this ain’t going to break. And it didn’t.
A61F9B8C-4BF0-4425-84D8-8E23C4F29FDE.jpeg


So not doubting anyones word but I am puzzled as to the tinderness of these stocks.
 

MN284

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Shotgun in a soft padded case, taking it out of the back of a pickup. Dropped about a foot. Cracked the toe off even though it was "protected by a hard rubber butt plate. (didn't damage the butt plate, just the stock. Had to fit a new piece of walnut on the stock.
 
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So not doubting anyones word but I am puzzled as to the tinderness of these stocks.
So... Regardless of stock "tenderness" or your experiences, historically in this country rifles, fowlers etc., other than some schimmels (barn guns) or Appalachian "poor boys" have been built with butt plates. Since it's your gun and you're not trying to re-create anything historical do what you want.
Kevin
 
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rt2bowhunter

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So... Regardless of stock "tenderness" or your experiences, historically in this country rifles, fowlers etc., other than some schimmels (barn guns) or Appalachian "poor boys" have been built with butt plates. Since it's your gun and you're not trying to re-create anything historical do what you want.
Kevin
Will thank you Kevin. I think i will do just that.

I reworker the wood but plate and some of the stock yesterday. And i ordered some brass to cover the Wenge i plan on aging to take the shine off (maybe). I'm still debating on reinforcing the butt plate internally. If not once i'm satisfied the Wenge will be glued and screwed to the walnut stock. Then backed up by the aged brass butt plate. I'm not convinced on this stock its needed but what's it going to hurt.

From a stock that i was going to pitch. To unwatching stocks on Ebay and bailing on ordering a maple stock. Because of ideas i have had because of this post. I think i'll end up with a nice hunting stock. That's going to be less tender.


We will see.

DADCDA23-C25C-4222-8876-14DDC4B56B6B.jpeg
 
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Cutfinger

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Some of the finest shotguns being made today have either no butt plate or a wooden one , but they don't have pointy toes .
If you were going to have to use your rifle as a walking stick to help you up a bank or whatever or whack an Indian you would want a butt plate .
I had never heard of Wenge so I looked it up , says it is very durable , rot resistant and not eaten by termites and is very expensive . Sounds just fine for a butt plate .
 

rt2bowhunter

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I got into making traditional bows. Not sure that's technically correct as they was of my own design. And i changed it with each bow i made (total of 3 LOL). Once i had one i really liked. I decided to build a nicer one so i chose Wenge and blood wood as a lam to strengthen the riser. My hurt shoulder got much worse so i bailed on the bow after i built the riser. That's where the Wenge came from. And it's kinda cool i'm using a part of a bow i never built. But that's a after thought i used it because i had it :).

Here’s the bow I settled on. It shoots really well and is very light weight.
6DA1CD15-9CA5-4805-9EBE-CAE22CB4E836.jpeg

Just some history lol. This bow is Zebra and blood wood with elm limbs.
 
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longcruise

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I put an ebony butt plate on a modern (ssshhh) rifle and it worked perfectly. I plan to do a restock on a Renegade and may go ebony on it if i don't find what i want that will fit in brass or steel.
 
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