The best thread I have read to date


Firearm & Gun Forum - FireArmsTalk.com > General Discussion Forums > The Club House > The best thread I have read to date

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 10-27-2010, 03:18 AM   #1
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Maverick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Houson,TX
Posts: 304
Liked 17 Times on 6 Posts

Default The best thread I have read to date

This is not a post by me, but it is my favorite thread I have read...



The weight of History (inherited guns)
Well, that's it, dad's gone.

It was all I could think as I sat there looking at the old (c1968) Remington 552 Speedmaster sitting on my workbench. It was dad's favorite "rabbit" gun and the one that was never going to leave his possession while he was on this earth. It was also the first real firearm I was ever allowed to handle, the one I learned all the basics on, the one that made me the terror of the rats at the local dump (where we used to earn an entire nickle for every tail we brought back!).

Sadly, when dad's emphysema really took hold I think the rifle was also a reminder of his younger and more vigorous "outdoor" days. Wistful recollections turned from bittersweet to simply bitter as his body failed him and he stuffed the wood and steel yardstick of his youth into the back of a closet and did his best to forget it.

When we uncovered it during the cleanup I pulled it from the closet to find that time had taken it's toll. The rifle looked bad enough then, but now the excellent lighting in my workshop revealed all. The rifle was bone dry and coated with dust and cobwebs. Wiping off the surface grime revealed a diseased looking finish with a peppering of rust spots all over the metal. The wood had also sprouted a dusting of mold. Still, a patch run through the bore revealed a bright shine so, I thought, maybe there was hope.

The cleanup was tedious and frustrating. Every part disassembled revealed more rust spots and a ton of rock-hard, dried up, lube and old powder fouling but I could hear dad's voice saying "well you started the job, you need to finish it". A lot of time was spent with patches, brushes, solvents, oil, and steel wool until the ugly warts of rust had been reduced to mere surface blemishes. The wood was oiled and rubbed until the manufacturer would have been proud.

Re-assembly was as satisfying as the dis-assembly had been frustrating with the parts clicking together precisely and the mechanical actions working smoothly. I stood up to un-kink my back, crabbed by the hours bent over the workbench, and appreciated the results of my labor. The metal had a deep glow interspersed with a mottling that gave the gun a pleasing appearance of honest use. The wood caught the light with a warm-honey glow, and the smell of clean metal and gunoil were still in the air. I think dad and I were both smiling at a job well done.

The next morning was clear and very cold as I tramped into the woods with the restored Remington and a box of .22LR shells. As I "broke trail" through the deeper snow I could see my dad, all those years ago, dressed in his red and black hunting jacket and the fur cap with the ear flaps tied up. He was stepping carefully, his big boots creating a nearly heel-to-toe trail through the snow that my 10 year old feet could easily follow. I'd been given the awesome responsibility of actually carrying the gun (not just the box of shells) and he spent the walk constantly reminding me to keep the the gun pointed in a safe direction and issuing sharp warnings that "I'd better keep the barrel out of the damned snow or he'd tan my hide". I smiled as I visualized what my serious little-child face must have looked like as I labored mightily to simultaneously keep up the pace and carry the weight of responsibility along with the weight of the gun.

Finally I arrived at the chosen location and set up a swinging target. Then I backed up a fair distance, loaded the gun, and prepared to fire.

Suddenly my trigger finger was paralyzed by a flood of internal doubt.

Thoughts clashed in my head "What if shooting this gun wasn't as cool as I remembered?", "What if the gun was really a worn out piece of scrap metal?" Did I want to risk shattering the beautiful childhood memories all around me?

CRACK!...... "TING"

I was laughing...with relief? with joy? Yes all that and more as the little metal spinner twirled. The old Remington was still "cool", it was still accurate, and after it's long slumber it was ready to play.

CRACK!...... "TING"
CRACK!...... "TING"
CRACK!...... "TING"
CRACK!...... OOPS, a miss. And there was dad's ghost, beaming but trying to look serious as he gently chided me on "wasting ammo" and once again walked me through the steps of breathing and trigger control.

150 rounds later I walked out of the woods side by side with the spirit of my father. When I got to my parked Jeep I looked back and in my mind I could see him older, but still healthy, still dressed in that ratty old hunting jacket, heavy canvas pants and huge rubber boots sniffing the clean forest air and smiling. It was like he was saying "You go on boy, I'm gonna walk in the woods for a while".

So I pulled out, me heading my way, him heading his, but I could almost hear his gruff last words "you make sure you clean that damned gun good or I'll tan your hide!"

Dedicated to Frank George Hawley 1940-2010



__________________
NEMO ME IMPUNE LASSIST
Maverick is offline  
 
Reply With Quote

Join FirearmsTalk.com Today - It's Free!

Are you a firearms enthusiast? Then we hope you will join the community. You will gain access to post, create threads, private message, upload images, join groups and more.

Firearms Talk is owned and operated by fellow firearms enthusiasts. We strive to offer a non-commercial community to learn and share information.

Join FirearmsTalk.com Today! - Click Here


Old 10-27-2010, 02:21 PM   #2
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
cappaletti's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Wilkesboro, NC,Wilkesboro, NC
Posts: 34
Default

That was beautiful...and enjoyable !

Gene



__________________

Life Member - NRA
Member - GOA
Member - American Gunsmith Association
Member - New Zealand Society of Gunsmiths
Member - SAF
Member - CCRKBA

God bless the USA and all those that protect her!....

cappaletti is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2010, 02:38 PM   #3
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Jo da Plumbr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 4,754
Liked 11 Times on 9 Posts

Default

Sad but touching.

Thanks

__________________
Quote:

"I think Congressmen should wear uniforms like NASCAR drivers so we could identify their corporate sponsors."

Jo da Plumbr is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2010, 03:47 PM   #4
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Dzscubie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: El Paso,Texas
Posts: 2,521
Liked 39 Times on 19 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

A great way to honor a loving father... well done!

__________________
"I never killed anyone who didn't need killing."
JW Hardin
Dzscubie is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2010, 05:30 PM   #5
FTF_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
orangello's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 19,155
Liked 5734 Times on 3360 Posts
Likes Given: 4877

Default

Must be some pepper spray on my collar or something.

__________________

Dead Bears, the only good kind.

orangello is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-27-2010, 05:42 PM   #6
FTF_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
CA357's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Oregon
Posts: 19,871
Liked 1175 Times on 510 Posts
Likes Given: 2978

Default

Nice.


....

__________________
“If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.”Samuel Adams
CA357 is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-28-2010, 03:05 AM   #7
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Maverick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Houson,TX
Posts: 304
Liked 17 Times on 6 Posts

Default

I hope someday my son has similar memories of our times in the woods and shooting.

__________________
NEMO ME IMPUNE LASSIST
Maverick is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-28-2010, 03:15 AM   #8
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
gorknoids's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Virginia Beach,Virginia
Posts: 2,425
Liked 8 Times on 6 Posts
Likes Given: 5

Default

The bit about the red and black checked hunting jacket brought back memories. When I was wee, that was a sign that you'd made it to the "Big Time". Great post.

__________________

"Guns don't kill people. Male Kennedy's kill people."

gorknoids is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-28-2010, 03:19 AM   #9
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Maverick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Houson,TX
Posts: 304
Liked 17 Times on 6 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by gorknoids View Post
The bit about the red and black checked hunting jacket brought back memories. When I was wee, that was a sign that you'd made it to the "Big Time". Great post.
Thanks bud.... I still remember my dads heavy jacket he used to wear. I hope he still has it.


__________________
NEMO ME IMPUNE LASSIST
Maverick is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Firearms Forum Replies Last Post
SKS Date of MFG WinM70 AK & SKS Discussion 2 07-10-2008 02:43 AM