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Reinhart Fajen
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I've been looking for a little more info/history of this gunstock maker. I know they were based here in Missouri. My rifle below, an Argentine Mauser was sporterized by my father when he was a teen in the 1950's. He gave it to me when I was a teen.



That Monte Carlo stock really works well with my face. Since taking possession of this rifle I have had the stock glass bedded and added the nice buttpad. I plan to refinish the stock someday soon. It has a glossy finish and I prefer a more rubbed look.

One thing I wondered was if Reinhart Fajen used American or European walnut? My assumption is American since Missouri is a hotbed of walnut trees. I like reading up on history and was surprised there really isn't much (that I have been able to find) on this company on the net.

Got more info? Please post it.


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by Aspen Hill Adventures:
I've been looking for a little more info/history of this gunstock maker. I know they were based here in Missouri. My rifle below, an Argentine Mauser was sporterized by my father when he was a teen in the 1950's. He gave it to me when I was a teen.



That Monte Carlo stock really works well with my face. Since taking possession of this rifle I have had the stock glass bedded and added the nice buttpad. I plan to refinish the stock someday soon. It has a glossy finish and I prefer a more rubbed look.

One thing I wondered was if Reinhardt Fagen used American or European walnut? My assumption is American since Missouri is a hotbed of walnut trees. I like reading up on history and was surprised there really isn't much (that I have been able to find) on this company on the net.

Got more info? Please post it.


A very nice rifle! More pics please.
 
Posts: 8692 | Location: Poetry, Texas | Registered: 28 November 2004Reply With Quote
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Fajen, not Fagen.
They used Black Walnut, Juglans Nigra, from the USA.
See, I didn't major in Forestry for nothing. Almost nothing.
 
Posts: 12346 | Location: USA | Registered: 02 August 2009Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by dpcd:
Fajen, not Fagen.
They used Black Walnut, Juglans Nigra, from the USA.
See, I didn't major in Forestry for nothing. Almost nothing.


Thank you! Corrected the spelling.


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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Ann,

Try a PM to Dennis Earl Smith. I believe he worked there in the custom shop.

Jeremy
 
Posts: 1383 | Location: Indiana | Registered: 28 January 2011Reply With Quote
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They used a lot of different wood, I even had my mod42 Win restocked in birdseye maple an fitted it back in the 70's


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Posts: 5071 | Location: Minnesota | Registered: 10 July 2002Reply With Quote
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Bishop was also in Warsaw if I remember correctly.


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Posts: 126 | Location: South Carolina | Registered: 18 September 2009Reply With Quote
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Yes they were; I used a lot of Fajen and Bishop stocks. I still have some of them, unfinished.
And they did offer other woods, but Ann's is American Black Walnut.
 
Posts: 12346 | Location: USA | Registered: 02 August 2009Reply With Quote
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I bought a lot of stocks from Fajen over the years, including this one, a 7X57 Mauser, built on a G33/40 action, with a Fajen stock which combined features from two deferent stock patterns. It is a sweet little rifle to carry and I used it on all kinds of plains game, up to and including wildebeest.

This is a Peters' gazelle I took in Kenya in 1975, just before hunting was totally shut down and the poaching rampage began.


 
Posts: 1619 | Registered: 27 March 2007Reply With Quote
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Macon Gunstocks

quote:
Macon Gunstocks manufactures top quality gun stocks in historic Warsaw, Missouri (gun stock capitol of the World). Home of world renown E.C. Bishop gun stocks and Reinhart Fajen gun stocks. Located in the heart of Walnut country, Central Missouri. Macon Gunstocks supplies quality USA made American Walnut gun stocks. Same Location for over 20 years. We offer fitting, finishing, checkering. Servicing gunsmiths and individuals.


So, it looks like some stock making is still going on there. They are about an hour and a half from me. I've always wanted to get my stock checkered and they do that. On my list to check out!


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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Very nice, Xausa!

quote:
Originally posted by xausa:
I bought a lot of stocks from Fajen over the years, including this one, a 7X57 Mauser, built on a G33/40 action, with a Fajen stock which combined features from two deferent stock patterns. It is a sweet little rifle to carry and I used it on all kinds of plains game, up to and including wildebeest.

This is a Peters' gazelle I took in Kenya in 1975, just before hunting was totally shut down and the poaching rampage began.




~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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I went to Bishop and Fajen plants in Warsaw back in 1967 to see the operation. I was the stockmaker for Knights Gun Shop in Ft Worth after Mr. Joe Knight retired in 1964. We used lots of their stocks and blanks. Bishop had their own mill and drying pit. Bishop black walnut was from the higher land area and was much harder and better grades of wood. I understand that Fajen got their wood from the sand flats on Ok. The style of the stock you have is a design of Fajen Aristocrat. Bishop had a stockmakers semi stock which was over routed on the outside and could to made into several styles of stocks. In that period of time was made very few straight classic stocks like we see today. I bought several blanks and semi inletted stocks mostly for the Mauser 98. That was from the good old days of stockmaking.
 
Posts: 839 | Location: Texas | Registered: 19 May 2004Reply With Quote
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Les, thank you for that info!

I am really enjoying learning about the history of my rifle. Don't know about the rest of you, but I think that is so cool to learn some history and actually own a piece of it no matter how small. Having the first hand stories adds quite a bit to my little quest.


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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Ann, is your Argy in 7.65 x 53?


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Posts: 5602 | Location: Retired and on the road, baby! | Registered: 15 October 2013Reply With Quote
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Doug, it's been rechambered to .30-06. I use Federal Premium 180 Grain NP's in it. Tack driver!


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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Ann, there are a lot of great hunting rifles out there wearing Fajen stocks. In the early 80s I just HAD TO have a full stocked rifle. I picked up a Mark X barreled action in 7X57 NIB and found a Fajen 90% inletted full stock at a gun show. It was a 2nd with sap wood and two large knotholes, but I figured I'd screw it up anyway so bought it and started whittling away.

My first effort at stock finishing actually turned out OK as far as functioning. Despite still looking like inferior wood, which it was(is), it fit me well and I have killed many deer with it. Plus, I have made most of my most remarkable shots with it.

It also started my obsession with full stocked rifles....which continues to this day. The Fajen stocked rifle is at the bottom of this pic:

 
Posts: 229 | Location: Alabama | Registered: 06 January 2005Reply With Quote
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Wasn't part of the Fajen family in-laws to the Bishop family ? I used a lot of Fajen stocks in the good ole days too. We used to get a lady at Fajen to send us Polaroid pictures of fancy blanks to help us make up our mind which one to buy.


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Posts: 1392 | Location: North Texas | Registered: 11 February 2001Reply With Quote
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The appropriate person to ask is Henry Pohl. Born in Warsaw, MO and grandson to E.C. Bishop. He now resides in the Weiser, ID. region. Reinhart Fajen was married to E.C. Bishop's daughter and the feud started between the two of them is still talked about in Warsaw today. Marty Fajen married the son of Reinhart. She worked in the plant and was very good at promotion. American Arms came into being after her marriage dissolved. Tri-Star is the company that American Arms evolved into. The Bishop family has been instrumental in the USA firearms industry since 1931. We owe much to them and the people who worked in both the plants. Fajen, INC closed the doors on Oct 18, 1998. I was the Custom Shop Supervisor at the time of it's closure. NO ONE HAS ALL OF THE STORY. MANY HAVE PIECES. Myself included.


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Posts: 296 | Location: Tygh Valley, OR | Registered: 05 November 2010Reply With Quote
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Dennis,

Thanks for the contribution!


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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Most (all?) of the Fajen stocks I have seen were American Black Walnut and 'semi inletted'. When I has 15 or 16 years old, I bought one to build my "custom" M96 Mauser in 6.5 X 55. I still have it and it shoots .5 moa with factory Norma ammo.
 
Posts: 463 | Location: S. E. Arizona | Registered: 01 February 2019Reply With Quote
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Woods used by Reinhart Fajen inlcuded:

Eastern Black Walnut (juglans nigra)
Western Black Walnut (juglans hindsii)
California English Walnut (juglans regia)
Eastern Rock Maple
Western Silver leaf Maple
American Pie Cherry (orange in color)
Mesquite
Laminated Birch
Turkish Walnut (juglans regia)
Bastogne Walnut
Myrtlewood
The Fajen warehouse had all grades of each and it was a real pain to inventory. But it got done...often.


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Posts: 296 | Location: Tygh Valley, OR | Registered: 05 November 2010Reply With Quote
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I had quite a few Custom Stocks built by Fajen in the 1970's when I was active in my Custom Shop. Over 3 dozen pistols and 2 dozen rifles. Some were built complete, some were 95% that I finished.

Here are 3 that I still own.







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Posts: 1433 | Location: Whitetail Country - Wisconsin | Registered: 28 September 2013Reply With Quote
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Much thanks to AR member max(hm2) for reaching out to me on PM. He sent me a few old catalogs from the Fajen glory days. I had time to sit down and read through them this afternoon. Very enjoyable.


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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I spent most of my time in those days at Bishop where I became good friends with Hulet Million. Hulet ran the stock making plant and was an accomplished stock maker in his own right. Hulet and I still talk 2 or 3 times a week. He stocks rifles and shotguns out of a shop at his home but it starting to cut back now that he is in his eighties. He is one of the finest people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. I still have a trove of old Bishop catalogs.

It was indeed a sad day when the city of Warsaw, MO lost both gun stock producing companies. A highly trained work force throughout the city was lost.
Phil
 
Posts: 234 | Location: Missouri | Registered: 09 July 2008Reply With Quote
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Phil, does Mr. Million still live in Missouri?


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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Yes. In Warsaw
 
Posts: 234 | Location: Missouri | Registered: 09 July 2008Reply With Quote
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Bishop stocks and 20 inch Douglas barrel on my custom Winchester 1892 .357 rifle.

Since this picture, the stocks have been cleaned, the dents removed, and the old lacquer finish removed and then oil finished. My wife and kids and a grand kid all learned to shoot a center fire rifle using this oldie. Action made around 1907.


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Posts: 1735 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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I have a Fajen stock on a Sako 17-223 that is made from Pacific Madrone. I spacial ordered it in 1969 & it was my first custom stock. I have never seen another stock from this wood but assume that they are out there because Fajen had them in differnt grades at that time. I have been told that some called this wood Coastal Ironwood.
 
Posts: 140 | Location: Texas | Registered: 26 August 2015Reply With Quote
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Originally posted by 375sunrise:
I have a Fajen stock on a Sako 17-223 that is made from Pacific Madrone. I spacial ordered it in 1969 & it was my first custom stock. I have never seen another stock from this wood but assume that they are out there because Fajen had them in differnt grades at that time. I have been told that some called this wood Coastal Ironwood.


Post a photo of it, please.


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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Of all the shooting related companies which have gone, I miss Fajen more than any. My first stock from Fajen was a classic for a Type "I" 6.5 Jap. which I bought in 1971. I don't know how many stocks I bought from them over the years but it was quite a bunch. Their catalog was nice too! Regards, Bill.
 
Posts: 2665 | Location: Elko, B.C. Canada | Registered: 19 June 2000Reply With Quote
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Phil, I'm glad to hear that Hulet is still around. I did a ton of business with him at Bishop's in the '80s. My largest order with him was to have 650 board feet of birdseye maple shipped from Mass. + milled into blanks. That was a lot of rifles. Beautiful wood, especially when mated to grip + endcaps of rosewood.


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Posts: 12504 | Location: Austin, Texas | Registered: 11 March 2013Reply With Quote
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Did the Fajen business get absorbed by Wenig? Also Bishop?

I imported a few stocks from Wenig in the mid 90s.


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Posts: 10465 | Location: New Zealand | Registered: 02 July 2008Reply With Quote
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No. Fred started his own company in 1992. Bishop was bought by Larry Potterfield in 1992 as well. Both names Reinhart Fajen and Bishop were under the same roof in Lincoln, MO by 1997 when I went to work there.


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Posts: 296 | Location: Tygh Valley, OR | Registered: 05 November 2010Reply With Quote
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Reinhart Fajen had a daughter and as I recall her name was Marty and I think she had dealings with Tristar firearms.

She was also a fine trap shooter and to my recollection was a close friend of Margaret (Hornady) David.....daughter of Joyce Hornady.

Margaret was the Personnel manager at Hornady and it's possible she still is.

You might try to contact her at Hornady and maybe she can get you in touch with Marty Fajen


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Posts: 28803 | Location: western Nebraska | Registered: 27 May 2003Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by Craftsman:
Wasn't part of the Fajen family in-laws to the Bishop family ? I used a lot of Fajen stocks in the good ole days too. We used to get a lady at Fajen to send us Polaroid pictures of fancy blanks to help us make up our mind which one to buy.


Her name was Eloise Atkins and I bought a few for my own use this way.

I was a stock buyer for resale inventory in a sporting goods store so I had lots of contact with them.

I have a couple finished rifles in my stable still. They're of the American classic style.

Zeke
 
Posts: 1351 | Registered: 27 October 2011Reply With Quote
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I'm planning a trip in January to Warsaw. Should be fun. All of the input everyone is adding is very helpful.


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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Her name was Eloise Atkins and I bought a few for my own use this way.

That's her, Eloise, a very nice lady to deal with.


Craftsman
 
Posts: 1392 | Location: North Texas | Registered: 11 February 2001Reply With Quote
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Here's a recent article worth reading:

Museum Celebrates Iconic Warsaw Gunstock Factory


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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Found this F&S article from 1985.

Stock Town, USA


~Ann



 
Posts: 14807 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With Quote
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Originally posted by Aspen Hill Adventures:
Found this F&S article from 1985.

Stock Town, USA


I envy your visit next month. I'll be waiting on a report.
 
Posts: 8692 | Location: Poetry, Texas | Registered: 28 November 2004Reply With Quote
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