Making Best Barrels


 Perhaps more than most enthusiasts, we spend a lot of time with our heads stuck firmly in the wonky world of quasi-arcane craft gunmaking methods. Deciphering detailed technical descriptions of handed down artisanal processes and sifting photos of century-old techniques are in the daily diet at Shooting Sportsman.

 So we’re always glad for a well-made video that helps bring the shop to life for us in vivid detail, though we can’t bring it to paper-and-ink. Here then is a quick three minutes of barrel making from the London shops of Holland & Holland. (Farther down on the same page there’s a nice video piece showing a trusted craftsmen taking some coarse tools to an expensive blank of Turkish walnut.)

 Senior Editor Vic Venters described Holland’s extraordinary commitment to barrel quality in a two-part Guncraft column in 2009. So, as attentive readers know, this video is not simply a techie treat — it’s a rarity. Holland & Holland took control of quality by bringing barrel-making in-house in 1965, making it “the UK’s sole sporting gunmaker to manufacture its own tubes and make its own barrels through all of the requisite steps and stages” as Vic wrote.

 The videos are featured as part of Holland & Holland’s new website, rolled out just last week. Lots of great eye candy and a lovely, easy-to-navigate site with lots of great history and product information.

 Holland & Holland’s new website.

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