Smith & Wesson Forum

Go Back   Smith & Wesson Forum > >


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 08-07-2018, 02:45 PM
Model 52's Avatar
Model 52 Model 52 is offline
Member
Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser  
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 165
Likes: 2
Liked 93 Times in 39 Posts
Default Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser

How does one identify if metal or stock checkering has been done by hand, machine or laser.

Model 52
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 08-07-2018, 03:57 PM
scoobysnacker scoobysnacker is offline
Member
Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser  
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 623
Likes: 311
Liked 682 Times in 272 Posts
Default

I would think laser is "too" precise; hand would have some variation but if skilled, no real flaw. Machine might be a tad rough with some of the grain.

Just a guess.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #3  
Old 08-07-2018, 04:26 PM
murphydog's Avatar
murphydog murphydog is offline
SWCA Member
Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser  
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 18,188
Likes: 39
Liked 7,543 Times in 4,471 Posts
Default

If you have a specific example photos would help, but in my observations some laser and automated wood checkering can look convincingly like hand but automated metal work is usually not very detailed or varied, like an engraver would do.
__________________
Alan
SWCA 2023, SWHF 220
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 08-07-2018, 04:53 PM
Fishinfool Fishinfool is offline
Member
Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser  
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Central PA
Posts: 2,362
Likes: 2,886
Liked 4,189 Times in 1,332 Posts
Default

Back when gunmakers were using "pressed checkering", it was pretty obvious, as the design was pressed in below the surface level of the wood, doing little to enhance the grip. The old Remington BDL's from the 1970's is a good example.

Todays machine cut checkering can be very good indeed, actually "cleaner" than typical factory hand checkering from days of old, with less over runs and flattened diamonds. It also allows for a more complex pattern that would be cost prohibited if done by hand on a factory rifle. I doubt there are few factory hand checkered stocks anymore in modern guns. Custom firearms with hand checkering is a different animal, requiring lots of time and skill, as well as cost. One key factor that usually differentiates a good custom hand checkering job from a good machine cut job is that many custom jobs are cut to a fine 22 or 24 LPI, while most machine cut checkering jobs usually run around 16 or 18 LPI.

Larry

Last edited by Fishinfool; 08-07-2018 at 04:58 PM.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Likes This Post:
  #5  
Old 08-08-2018, 12:23 AM
Bill Raby Bill Raby is offline
Member
Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser  
Join Date: Oct 2017
Posts: 305
Likes: 0
Liked 463 Times in 159 Posts
Default

Laser checkering is just lines burned into the stock in a checkering sort of pattern. It is extremely obvious. I got a cheap Chinese double coach gun that has it. It looks really bad. One of these days I will redo it by hand. But I love the gun.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 08-08-2018, 08:55 AM
2152hq 2152hq is offline
Member
Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser  
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 5,292
Likes: 409
Liked 3,380 Times in 1,574 Posts
Default

Once you have the different types in front of you it's pretty easy to tell the difference. If you do either of those by hand you will pick out the mechanized versions in a blink of the eye.

There are automated systems in the wood checkering phase that are allowing the use of laser for guidance but the cutting is actually still done by extreme HS cutters. This keeps the depth of the diamonds and the entire pattern perfect even if the wood surface varies a small amt from stock to stock.
This last variation in wood surface height is becoming more and more of a non-issue as the stocks are inletted and outside shaped on machines that complete them and you are left with the wood with a 320grit finish on the outside and no hand fitting needed on the inside.

Of course the guns design is made to delete any of the old squared out corners & such inside in the inletting that used to take final hand fitting to complete. Hand labor to fit and finish can be the death of an other wise marketable gun.

The laser guide checkering machines run at an incredible speed to cut the patterns. Faster than you can see it cut individual lines.
Change the program,,change the pattern. It flips the stock over and does the other side before removing the stock and readying for another.
Very robotic,,very $$.

The laser-burn cut style of checkering is still used but is falling from use. It is easily seen as the blackened wood in the pattern and not always perfect diamonds appear.
It was a step towards quicker production when it came out but it had it's big detractors especially for the bigger money guns.

Impressed checkering is gone,,a 60's and 70's thing. Usually imperfectly done as the wood surfaces were uneven stock to stock from hand sanding on belts.
It was quick, that's for sure and took hold in a hurry.
The hand checkered stocks of even the low grade guns had been checkered with their simple patterns for a anywhere from less than a $1 per set (butt stock and forend) to costing the factory as much as $5 and $6 a set for the more fancy styles.
This was even after WW2 when freelanse checkerers took most of the biz away from the 'wood rooms' of the mfg'rs. But labor cost surged and the impressed checkering took hold.

The electric checkering machines like the MMC in particular in the 70's brought back some 'hand' checkering on factory guns. Ruger used them a lot and employed quite a few people to checker stocks with them.
Kimber also.
Great time savers and with the right touch they can plant down a pattern in about 1/3 of the time as doing it by hand. They could do it w/o much if any hand touch up.
I've used one of those since the mid 70's and I still use it for the main lay-out, Then have to bring the pattern & diamonds to point with hand tools. Still a big time saver,,probably saves me 1/2 the time of doing it all by hand.
(I've got a 28lpi job waiting for me on a Purdey as soon as the stock finish and repairs are complete).

Metal checkering,,I just use a hammer and chisel. I have used the metal checkering files and they do work good but you can get in trouble with them as soon as you hit a concave or convex surface.,,and you are sure to find one on a gun.
The files will make a cleaner, neater cut than doing it line by line with a graver tool. The graver used to individualy cut each line is just going to have enough variation in each to be noticable especially with they are stacked closely together and parallel as in checkering. The slightest variation and your eye is drawn right to it.
Great for small parts like safetys, latches, ect, but a grip frame looks better if skillfully done with a checkering file most times.
But a graver does allow you to keep the diamonds within a border, where doing it with a file is almost impossible. In the least you have to come back and touch it up with a graver.

A lot of the custom work done now is done with machine tools including metal checkering. Way above my pay-grade.
I get along with a hand crank lathe and bench mill. Just and elect motor.
These guys and gals use machinery that is computer run, keyboards,,drives, programs, screens,,ect and can do things I can't even imagine. I've seen metal checkering done on machine that is just unbelievable and on any contour or variation of surface. Perfection.
The way to go if you're going to compete for the blue ribbon at those high class get togethers in Vegas and else where.

When the MMC wood checkering tool came on the scene, some enterprising folks decided the tool would be the nuts for metal checkering as well.
Extreme high speed cutter w/a guide!!,,what could go wrong!.
It works at first,,then the little bearings in the tool head over heat and the thing unwinds and comes apart with a bang.
Nice idea, but not what they were designed for.

There's a couple other hand held electric checkering handpieces out there now. The MMC is no longer made. I hope mine keeps going as long as I do. They are quite pricey to have to replace and I don't look forward to going backward to the good old days of doing the entire patterns by hand again. If I have to,,,,we'll see.

Anyway, that's the look at checkering from someone that's been at it since the late 60's.
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Like Post:
  #7  
Old 08-08-2018, 03:18 PM
Model 52's Avatar
Model 52 Model 52 is offline
Member
Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser Gun Checkering, hand, machine or laser  
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 165
Likes: 2
Liked 93 Times in 39 Posts
Default

2152hq......thank you
Model 52


Quote:
Originally Posted by 2152hq View Post
Once you have the different types in front of you it's pretty easy to tell the difference. If you do either of those by hand you will pick out the mechanized versions in a blink of the eye.

There are automated systems in the wood checkering phase that are allowing the use of laser for guidance but the cutting is actually still done by extreme HS cutters. This keeps the depth of the diamonds and the entire pattern perfect even if the wood surface varies a small amt from stock to stock.
This last variation in wood surface height is becoming more and more of a non-issue as the stocks are inletted and outside shaped on machines that complete them and you are left with the wood with a 320grit finish on the outside and no hand fitting needed on the inside.

Of course the guns design is made to delete any of the old squared out corners & such inside in the inletting that used to take final hand fitting to complete. Hand labor to fit and finish can be the death of an other wise marketable gun.

The laser guide checkering machines run at an incredible speed to cut the patterns. Faster than you can see it cut individual lines.
Change the program,,change the pattern. It flips the stock over and does the other side before removing the stock and readying for another.
Very robotic,,very $$.

The laser-burn cut style of checkering is still used but is falling from use. It is easily seen as the blackened wood in the pattern and not always perfect diamonds appear.
It was a step towards quicker production when it came out but it had it's big detractors especially for the bigger money guns.

Impressed checkering is gone,,a 60's and 70's thing. Usually imperfectly done as the wood surfaces were uneven stock to stock from hand sanding on belts.
It was quick, that's for sure and took hold in a hurry.
The hand checkered stocks of even the low grade guns had been checkered with their simple patterns for a anywhere from less than a $1 per set (butt stock and forend) to costing the factory as much as $5 and $6 a set for the more fancy styles.
This was even after WW2 when freelanse checkerers took most of the biz away from the 'wood rooms' of the mfg'rs. But labor cost surged and the impressed checkering took hold.

The electric checkering machines like the MMC in particular in the 70's brought back some 'hand' checkering on factory guns. Ruger used them a lot and employed quite a few people to checker stocks with them.
Kimber also.
Great time savers and with the right touch they can plant down a pattern in about 1/3 of the time as doing it by hand. They could do it w/o much if any hand touch up.
I've used one of those since the mid 70's and I still use it for the main lay-out, Then have to bring the pattern & diamonds to point with hand tools. Still a big time saver,,probably saves me 1/2 the time of doing it all by hand.
(I've got a 28lpi job waiting for me on a Purdey as soon as the stock finish and repairs are complete).

Metal checkering,,I just use a hammer and chisel. I have used the metal checkering files and they do work good but you can get in trouble with them as soon as you hit a concave or convex surface.,,and you are sure to find one on a gun.
The files will make a cleaner, neater cut than doing it line by line with a graver tool. The graver used to individualy cut each line is just going to have enough variation in each to be noticable especially with they are stacked closely together and parallel as in checkering. The slightest variation and your eye is drawn right to it.
Great for small parts like safetys, latches, ect, but a grip frame looks better if skillfully done with a checkering file most times.
But a graver does allow you to keep the diamonds within a border, where doing it with a file is almost impossible. In the least you have to come back and touch it up with a graver.

A lot of the custom work done now is done with machine tools including metal checkering. Way above my pay-grade.
I get along with a hand crank lathe and bench mill. Just and elect motor.
These guys and gals use machinery that is computer run, keyboards,,drives, programs, screens,,ect and can do things I can't even imagine. I've seen metal checkering done on machine that is just unbelievable and on any contour or variation of surface. Perfection.
The way to go if you're going to compete for the blue ribbon at those high class get togethers in Vegas and else where.

When the MMC wood checkering tool came on the scene, some enterprising folks decided the tool would be the nuts for metal checkering as well.
Extreme high speed cutter w/a guide!!,,what could go wrong!.
It works at first,,then the little bearings in the tool head over heat and the thing unwinds and comes apart with a bang.
Nice idea, but not what they were designed for.

There's a couple other hand held electric checkering handpieces out there now. The MMC is no longer made. I hope mine keeps going as long as I do. They are quite pricey to have to replace and I don't look forward to going backward to the good old days of doing the entire patterns by hand again. If I have to,,,,we'll see.

Anyway, that's the look at checkering from someone that's been at it since the late 60's.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Laser vs. Hand Stippling A2 Stippling Smith & Wesson M&P Pistols 2 08-07-2017 01:22 PM
Was checkering on grips done by hand or by machine? snubbert S&W Revolvers: 1961 to 1980 5 04-16-2016 06:53 PM
Was/Is Checkering Hand Done? jsfricks S&W Hand Ejectors: 1896 to 1961 31 03-26-2013 03:05 PM
laser sights for hand ejector ? tinkerunique S&W-Smithing 1 05-01-2012 05:16 PM
Can't find em'! Fancy walnut, K frame RB grips, with hand cut checkering w/diamonds model65roundbutt S&W Revolvers: 1961 to 1980 9 04-20-2009 01:01 PM

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
smith-wessonforum.com tested by Norton Internet Security smith-wessonforum.com tested by McAfee Internet Security

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 06:06 AM.


Search Engine Optimisation provided by DragonByte SEO v2.0.42 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2018 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
S-W Forum, LLC 2000-2018
Smith-WessonForum.com is not affiliated with Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ Global Select: SWHC)