Home Up Cryo-Accurizing Custom Rifles The Model 1911 .45 Gunsmith Services Fees

Custom Gun Building

"Old World Quality and Craftsmanship©"
BSR Custom Arms - A Division of


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BSR Custom Arms, a division of BSR Group, Inc. is dedicated to the repair, restoration and conservation of fine firearms and the fabrication of complete competition quality custom buildups, custom rifles (competition quality and field), and custom precision ammunition (both handgun and rifle) for competitive/professional shooters and the serious hunter. (See Section "What Makes an Accurate Rifle?" below and follow this link to "So, You Want to Build a Custom Competition Quality 1911 .45! ".  Moreover, we offer custom stocks, checkering, carvings & engraving  as well as custom hand/long-gun cases and cabinets. All work is directly performed or supervised by Wilhelm D. vonRothenburg, retired member of the United States Marine Corps competitive shooting team and member of the American Pistol-Smiths Guild. (See Home Page

Repair and conservation:
     We handle all aspects of the firearm restoration process (metal and stock work), including restoration from fire and water damage, save and except bluing/blackening (metal preparation and final polishing is accomplished by our firm) which is performed under our direct supervision by a firm specializing in such metal work.  This same firm performs similar out-services for the major firearms manufacturers.    
     Our complete metal and wood shop allows us to fabricate new parts to original manufacturer specifications as well as perform all aspects of stock restoration including repair of damaged stocks. 
    We also provide custom ammunition for firearms designed during the change to metal cartridges such as Spencers.  (We recently accomplished a complete restoration of a Spencer found during the demolition of our customer's barn.  The Spencer had belonged to her great-grandfather and she begged for the opportunity to "fire" just one last time prior to permanent retirement from service.  We fabricated 6 rounds [rim fire/black powder/.54 c-ball round] using custom tooled cartridges into which we fixed .22 caliber primer ends - our customer's wish was granted).  Moreover, our custom ammunition can be used for arms otherwise obsolete.

Custom Gun building
    We offer custom competition build-ups for hand and long gun including:

Complete Custom Rifles,
Custom Competition Quality 1911 .45 Build-ups,
        Compensators/Muzzle Brakes,
        Custom Stocks/Grips,
        Glass bedding
    for the professional/armature competitive shooter and the
    serious sport hunter.

Prices for our services may be found at the following Links:
Complete Custom Rifles
Custom Competition Quality 1911 .45 Build-ups, and
Gunsmith General Price List.

What Makes an Accurate Rifle?

An accurate rifle will have a blueprinted (trued) action, properly fit barrel with a concentric crown, trigger job, good bedding, and quality ammunition made to match the chamber. 

Action Tuning (blueprinting) 
Barrel Lapping
Barrel Fit
Trigger Tuning
Quality Precision Ammunition

The following suggestions are developed from many years of experience as a full time professional gunsmith.  Maybe more important is our experience in shooting and hunting.  The idea is to give you an overview of what it takes to build an accurate hunting rifle.  If you are looking for bench rest magic that requires lots more time, and, money than the suggestions below.

Action Tuning (blueprinting) is the process of making all the parts that make up the action square and true to the bore.  First, the locking lugs of the bolt must be lapped to insure even solid contact with the locking surfaces in the receiver.  When finished the lugs should have equal contact area and contact should exceed 80%.  This is accomplished using professional lapping compounds that produce smooth even surfaces.

Once the lugs are lapped, it's time to face the receiver.  A precision mandrel is inserted into the action to hold it true to the axis of the bore.  The mandrel and action are then placed on the lathe and a small amount of material is cut off the front of the receiver where it will contact the shoulder of the barrel.  Only enough material is removed to square up the front of the receiver, so no strength is lost.

Then we insert the bolt in the action and measure from the receiver face down to the bolt face.  We hold a standard for the bolt face of plus or minus .0005 inches across the face.  If this standard is held along with the facing of the receiver and the lapping of the lugs, sub minute of angle groups will result.  In cases where the bolt face does not meet this specification, we use a precision mandrel and a steady rest to hold the bolt in a lathe to face the bolt face square.

Barrel Lapping is available for new barrels upon request.  Lapping the bore can offer more uniformity, velocity, and accuracy.  This process removes the small burrs and marks left in the bore from the machine process.  It also polishes the bore, which reduces fouling.  A side benefit is that, there is little or no break in for a lapped bore; this saves lots of time and money at the range.  All the top match barrels are lapped; Hart and Lilja are two examples.                                 
                                                                     (Barrel Turning - Click to Enlarge)


Barrel Fit is the next consideration.  The barrel must be set up on the lathe so that it is centered perfectly on the bore.  Centering the barrel on the bore insures that it will be mounted squarely in the action.  The shoulder will be exactly 90 degrees to the bore and the threads will be concentric to the bore, all are essential to accuracy.  Equally as important is the crown.  It also must be concentric to give best accuracy.  Over the years, we have tried many styles of crowns at many different angles to the bore.  Some work better than others but the bottom line is always the same, if it is concentric, it will be accurate.  (Heard of cryogenically treated barrels? Learn more about the benefits of this process via this link.)


Trigger Tuning can do more for accuracy than you might think.  These days the factories are shipping guns with trigger pulls of five to eight pounds.  To add insult to injury they include lots of sear engagement  (shooters call that 'Creep').  Winchester and Remington triggers can be stoned and adjusted to good hunting weights.  There are aftermarket triggers available for most actions these days.  Pull weights with these triggers vary according to the manufacturer and or model chosen.  Group size can be greatly reduced by a good trigger, just ask a bench rest shooter.  

Bedding varies a little from one action to the next.  The best method is to free float the barrel and bed the action.  This can be accomplished a few different ways.  H-S Precision offers a line of stocks that have a milled aluminum-bedding block that takes care of bedding, some tuning can make the H-S system even more accurate.  The other options are pillar bedding and glass bedding.  Pillars are made from metal usually aluminum, the purpose is to add a support to the stock so that it cannot be crushed by the action screws.  The pillars also add stability to the bedding job.  Glass bedding is the most common method used.  Fiberglass and epoxy are used to bed the action of the rifle.  This adds stability and protection from humidity.  Proper bedding requires an understanding of the pressure points of the action and the methods that will provide the best support and results.  A good bedding job will improve accuracy.

Quality Precision Ammunition is a product of good reloading skills and tools.  There are many makers of reloading dies.  Quality varies widely from one manufacturer to the next.  All will work to produce usable ammunition.  Accurate ammo requires better quality dies.  Just like the rifle, the dies must be concentric in order to be accurate.

Think of it this way, if you were to draw a 12 inch long line on a piece of paper with a ruler held firmly down you will get a single clean line from end to end.  What happens if you stop every inch and pick the ruler up, replace it on the paper, and continue the line?  Likely no matter how careful you are the line will not be perfectly straight.  When we reload ammo, we are picking up the ruler with every component used and with every process executed.

Each component must be as concentric and accurately made as possible.  This is why you often hear “reloaders” talk of using brass from 'one lot,' it provides uniformity.  Primer pockets must be the same depth from case to case.  The primer must be seated to the same depth on each case.  The cases must not be bent; some dies will actually bend the neck of the case.  Powder charges must be carefully weighed so that each charge is the same as the last.  Good quality bullets must be used; if they are cheap, there is usually a reason.  Care must be taken when seating bullets not to bend the case in the die.  Conventional bullet “seaters” will often bend the neck because the bullet is not held concentric during the seating process.  Inline bullet seaters will solve this problem.  The idea is to hold the case and the bullet concentrically while seating the bullet.  The last consideration is seating depth; here again uniformity is the name of the game.

Seating depth is established best by using one of the commercial devices available on the market for this purpose.  Once the seating depth is established, start by seating your bullet .050 inches off the lands.  Do some shooting to find your most accurate powder and charge.  Once you have located a good load varying, the seating depth will help tighten the groups.  Start by seating the bullet deeper by an additional .010 inches at a time.  Fire test groups, when you find the best group sometimes adjusting the seating depth by .005 inches one way or the other will tighten the group even further.  Best accuracy usually occurs between .050 and .080 inches.  On rare occasion, seating the bullet closer to the lands will be more accurate. 

I often hear shooters talk about seating out the bullet to touch the lands of the barrel.  Bench rest shooter gets away with this practice because they are normally loading at relatively low pressures.  Conditions for bench rest shooting also allow the shooter to spot problems that a hunter could easily miss in the field.

Seating to the lands is OK for forming brass but is dangerous in hunting situations, as bullets can stick in the throat when extracting live rounds.  In addition, pressure spikes can occur if the bullet is touching the lands.  Better consistency and therefore accuracy will come from bullets seated away from the rifling lands.  Never seat any closer to the lands than you have to achieve accuracy.

Custom Stocks:

Custom stocks to match your individual pull, drop in your choice of wood. Checkering (over-checkering), carvings, inlays and glass bedding.  (Also See Section "Custom Rifles".)
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Custom Engraving

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Custom Hand and Long Gun Cabinetry, to match any decor.

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                            Federal Firearms License # - 35-33227


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