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Old 09-07-2019, 11:19 AM
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Custom Dakota 22 Sporter



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Hi all,

For this thread I'm going to share the journey of a beautiful work of art, from its inception to the completion. I once again chose to have James Anderson Sculpt this rifle.

http://www.sdplains.com/~chico/home.html

As many of you may not know, James was once a very valued member of the Dakota Arms family, from the old days of Don and Norma. I was regaled by stories of the old days at Dakota, How James was always rushed and pushed to just push the .22 out, they looked at the Dakota .22 as a lesser rifle there and attention to detail was often times skipped in the mid to lower end ones. I once asked James if he had a chance to build a Dakota .22 the way he wanted to in that era what would he have built. He lit up and started rattling off what he would have made. I knew then and there I had to commission him to do just that, Build a perfect Dakota 22.

First I had to find a rifle cheap enough and beat up enough to tear apart for this project. I missed buying an action and a barreled action both by minutes. After about a year of looking I acquired a perfect donor rifle. The rifle had aftermarket sights, rust on spots, and the stock was beat up. so off to James it went. I didn't get a chance to take pictures of it before unfortunately, so no the only before I can find is from one of the owners threads on here before he sold it on gunbroker.

https://www.rimfirecentral.com/forum...ghlight=dakota

It was sad to see how far this rifle had fallen after it left TBR's possession.

Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 12:36 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 11:49 AM
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Next I had to choose a blank for this build. With the last Remington build several members helped me choose between a ton of blanks, we had narrowed it to two. For this build I used the second one. It is very similar to something Dakota would have used if upgraded wood was paid for. This is an awesome English Walnut Blank tons of figure and great color.






Above are all before rough cutting, below are after rough cutting





Now add some ebony



Some other operations in the process including making pillars and drilling some wholes.



Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 05:29 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 12:05 PM
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For the barrel we used a hand lapped chromoly Shilen Ratchet groove. Jim modified the contour and the shoulder for the perfect custom look.








James said he never liked the shape of the factory bolt handle so he did a redesign of it to something he felt flows better and is befitting of a fine rifle. You can see the white bolthandle in the last picture, here are videos below:

https://youtu.be/LpKuqGEhY9E
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QCvp...ature=youtu.be

Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 05:31 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 12:31 PM
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You'll notice the modified trigger hanger. This was required to use the reworked Timney pre-64 model 70 trigger. Pull weight travel etc are far better than a factory trigger could ever get safely.


Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 02:38 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 01:30 PM
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our next thoughts turned to rings and bases. I wanted a base that used Talley rings with no hang over double boxed hidden rail. James loved the idea but knew it would take a lot of prototyping until we found the right balance.








Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 05:33 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 01:38 PM
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The final piece of the receiver group was the bottom metal. Nothing super special here. James took a straddle floor plate set up and did his normal 6 plus hour reshaping and polishing job until it met his full satisfaction. Notice the shape and edges of the bottom metal, it flows. These are the fine details that sets the truly special smiths apart from the rest.


Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 02:40 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 01:45 PM
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Beautiful and great pictures.
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Old 09-07-2019, 01:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grg View Post
Beautiful and great pictures.
thank you

Next we moved on to the balance of the metal work. The butt plate and the grip cap. These also needed to be special, I like trap door butts that hold a spare magazine. James was not happy with what was available on the market so what did he do? What any good smith would do, made his own. Here is a picture thread and video of it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TqcM...ature=youtu.be

Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 02:25 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 02:04 PM
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Absolutely stunning.
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Old 09-07-2019, 02:25 PM
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Of course it had to have a skeleton grip cap, but I wanted something different and better that a standard one. More metal, domed, like a 2 screw grip cap but skeleton. After a week or so of back and forth conversations, emails and drawings we came up with the following. I love this grip cap!!!!


















Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 05:41 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 03:20 PM
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Now they both needed installed in their new homes.

First the grip cap, he fit it to the stock prior to skeleton operation.




now the trap door butt plate with the magazine holder, it clicks in place when inserted. Fit and finish on both is world class!!!








Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 05:45 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 03:27 PM
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As James was completing the final shaping and checkering.







Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 05:46 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 03:42 PM
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The metal work wen off to another former Dakota Arms employee, Master engraver Jesse Kaufman for some additional special touches. Jesse is a great engraver and was chosen because he too put up with the get that 22 out of here hurry up stuff from Norma. I wanted to keep this a true former Dakota Arms employee build. Jesse just sent me some better pictures to update here. Here is the link to look at some of Jesse's other work.

http://www.blackhillsgunstocksandeng...com/index.html















Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-08-2019 at 07:57 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 04:13 PM
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The stock after final oil and checkering all ready for its barreled action!!!



Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 04:31 PM.
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Old 09-07-2019, 04:54 PM
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Here is the Metal work with an awesome coating of real rust blueing!!!!









Last edited by WATCHADDIC; 09-07-2019 at 05:53 PM.
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