IN THE BEGINNING
The first time I saw this gun mounted in it’s wooden stock, I said “that has got to be the coolest gun in the world”. Of course that was just my opinion, but that’s where the name came from. . For some time I had envisioned having a bolt-action rifle in a wooden stock just for the heck of it, but it was a bit more of a project than I felt like tackling. Teammates Chris Demartini, Mike Young, and I had discussed the idea, and the next thing I know, Chris comes up with one of his pumps mounted in a homemade wooden stock. The gun was a nelson-based pump he had picked up used for a few dollars, and really turned out well. It was bolt action and had a quick-disconnect for running a remote Co2 system. I had to have one.
The C.G.W. started out life as a Line SI Bushmaster pump gun, seen in the photo on the right with a bottomline adapter, and the same out-of production, commercially sold silencer seen in later pictures on this page. Like the previous gun Chris had made, the Busmaster is a nelson-based pump gun. For anyone who doesn’t remember the out-of-production Bushmaster, it’s nearest relatives in current production guns are Phantoms, the Trracer/Maverick/Hornet series, and Kingman Hammers – any of which would make good basis for a similar project. (Carter Custom Machine pumps are also close relatives of the Bushmaster, but are rather expensive for doing such a project.)
The first attempt at mounting the Bushmaster body involved using a leftover stock from a High Standard .22 caliber rifle. It was a nice gun, but the fit was restricted by the dimensions of the stock made for an obviously smaller diameter gun. Although performance certainly counts on this gun, cosmetics are a major consideration. This was to be a limited-use project gun. The High Standard stock was a bit lengthier than I preferred, and I also wanted the gun to have a 12 gram quick changer in the butt. Rather than hack into a nice looking stock, Chris suggested he make a custom wooden stock, designed from the ground up for the Bushmaster body. Starting with a block of mahogany, Chris cut, carved, and routed based largely on the shape of the High Standard stock. What he came up with was very impressive. The stock fit like a glove, and feels great.
The Line SI lever quick changer is recessed into the butt of the stock, with a hose coming out the opposite side. I wanted the gun to be self-contained, with no large bulky bottles or remote hoses to detract from the “rifle” feel. However, the quick changer is connected to the rear of the gun with a quick-disconnect, which can accept a remote line if needed.
In order to make the most of the 12 gram power, the gun uses stock Bushmaster internals – an aluminum and delrin bolt, and a lightweight aluminum hammer. These parts, along with a Lapco #6 valve tube make the C.G.W. very efficient and consistent. The gun uses the longest Bushmaster barrel I had access to, which measures 14 inches. I recently added a slip extension designed for an old-style Nelspot 007 (early 007s had a 1-inch OD) which brings the length to 19 inches.
The pumping action of the CGW is sort of reversed. One pump arm from the original Bushmaster pump handle is attached to the bolt, with a knob on the opposite end. This was done to move the cocking action further to the rear, where it would be easier to reach with the trigger hand. The arm is held in place by a small wiring harness bracket from my box of odd motorcycle parts. In addition, a small spring is attached behind the arm to assist in forward return. To cock this gun, the shooter merely pulls the knob back and releases it.
The tricky part of these stocks is making the action work. Since the location of the trigger on the wooden stock is generally lower and farther to the rear, the grip frame from the original gun cannot be used. Therefore, In each one of them, a lever system has to be set up that allows the trigger to trip the hammer sear. After receiving several request for more information, I modified one of the drawings from the How Nelson Guns Work page, in an effort to illustrate how the trigger is physically relocated. In the C.G.W., a Bushmaster trigger piece is used, while a bracket from an old carburetor acts as the lever between the trigger and the sear. There are two metal pins inserted through the stock on which these parts pivot. On this gun, pulling the trigger pushes the lever up, which in turn lifts the rear of the sear up. Chris Demartini devised this system and did an excellent job of measuring the distances, giving the C.G.W. a very short, crisp trigger pull. Each of the few guns we have made like this are custom in the dimensions of the stocks, and use diffrent pump guns as a basis. That means there are no set demensions for the measurements concenring the levers, and placement of the pins. Even the lever systems and how they trip the sears varies from gun to gun, as the designs vary.
This picture shows the wooden stock minus the gun body and lever quick changer. As you can see from the unpainted wood areas, channels were carved out in the wooden stock to match the diameters of the parts (about 1 inch wide and 1/2 inch deep) . This part is basically designed to replace the original grip frame as described above. For a more detailed picture of the body channel, click here. Click on the smaller picture below to open up a seperate window with the basic deminsions of the wooden stock.
The suppresser seen in many of these pictures is really for looks. The gun shoots more consistent without it. Accuracy always was one of the qualities that sold Bushmasters, and the C.G.W. is no exception. With fresh paint the gun is very consistent and at 30 yards holds a very tight pattern, given the shooter takes the time to aim carefully. At that range I can knock down cans of spray paint within 3 shots. The C.G.W. retains the Bushmaster’s interchangeable barrel feature, although the retention system was modified slightly. It requires a small “flat spot” be milled on the outside of the rear of the barrel for the retention screw. This was made necessary because of a tendency for the barrel to rotate under the weight of the original bi-pod system.