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Thread: Rimfire Benchrest rifles (Calfee SPEC rifles)

  1. #46
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    SPEC 9 The Georgia Shaker

    I found this info over on the wwaccuracy website. It is buried at the bottom and I thought this information belonged in this thread so I've copied it here.

    If anyone can shed more light on this story please post it I'm sure many would like to know.

    http://www.wwaccuracy.com/showthread...gedy-of-SPEC-9

    "The tragedy of SPEC 9

    CYA friends:

    The most important, and valuable, RFBR rifles ever produced are my very limited number of SPEC Rifles.

    My very limited number of SPEC rifles have produced a disproportionate number of Big National Championships and RFBR Records, for their numbers....

    There will never be another Calfee SPEC rifle built.

    This fact alone makes these Calfee SPEC rifles priceless.

    But all is not perfect...................

    CYA Friends, Tony "TDX" Harper has become the caretaker of the history of Calfee SPEC rifles.

    So I'll add some details to the their history

    There's one Calfee SPEC rifle that tested as bad as "Black Death", "Duke of Earl", "Merlin" and all the rest, that turned out to be an "also ran".

    SPEC 9

    The "Georgia Shaker".

    CYA friends, the Shaker started life by setting the Florida State IR-50 Record, with a 22X possible.

    This was back in 2009.....outdoors....

    And then........................................

    A self proclaimed "tuning expert" talked the Shaker's owner into doing the "Tuner Twist".....

    And one of the greatest Calfee SPEC rifles, "SPEC "9 went down hill from there...........

    What an absolute tragedy....................

    CYA friends, this may help you to understand why I rail against self appointed, tuning experts.

    It makes me literally sick to my stomach......

    Your friend, Bill Calfee

    NOTE: To see the pics you will have to go to the link on the wwaccuracy site
    http://www.wwaccuracy.com/showthread...gedy-of-SPEC-9

    Here's two pictures:

    Please look at them closely....

    Look at the marbling pattern just to the right of the bolt handle......closely.

    The top picture is of the original stock on the "Shaker"...

    The bottom picture is the same stock, but now on "Raging Inferno".

    I have no idea what stock is on the "Shaker" today.

    CYA friends, "Georgia Shaker", in my opinion, had the greatest potential of all of my SPEC rifles, including "Black Death", the "Duke", "Merlin", "Paladin" and SPEC 13, "Carolina Gold".

    I get literally sick to my guts every time I think about the "Shaker"...

    What a tragedy.....

    QUESTION: What stock is on the Shaker today and why was it changed????


    Another question: If the stock is not original and the barrel isn't original is it still "The Georgia Shaker"???

    TKH
    Last edited by tonykharper; 04-05-2020 at 09:54 AM.

  2. #47
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    Tony

    Another question. Did the rifles wearing the stock & barrel today become Spec rifles or Calfee guns?
    I think its the same answer.
    And another. I put a used Langley barrel on a Turbo action that had a Borden stamped barrel on it when I got it. I had to remove .002 from the breech What is it now?

    Keith
    Last edited by linekin; 04-05-2020 at 10:23 AM.

  3. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by linekin View Post
    Another question. Did the rifles wearing the stock & barrel today become Spec rifles or Calfee guns?
    I think its the same answer.
    And another. I put a used Langley barrel on a Turbo action that had a Borden stamped barrel on it when I got it. I had to remove .002 from the breech What is it now?

    Keith
    Being home and staying safe I've had some time to think about this. In the case of Spec 9, The Georgia Shaker,

    I think the graphics on the action, all that jeweling, makes it so distinctive, that action is always going to look like a Calfee Spec rifle.

    And if we never see it on the range we will never know if it shoots like a Spec rifle or not, so it may not matter.

    But your question goes deeper.

    When a smith delivers a completed rifle to it's owner that may be the last time that rifle is really is as the smith built it.

    Every owner I know tinkers with everything on his rifles, and when he does he may make it better than delivered, or maybe not. One thing about it though, the smith is probably going to get the blame.

    Just keeping a rifle in tune and fed good ammo is hard, and sometimes requires things to be changed. Like tuners, weights, tubes, triggers, etc.

    Changing anything can cause unintended consequences. Particularly triggers, removing and replacing a trigger even if it is the same trigger can change your timing and your ignition.

    It can take a great shooting rifle to a mediocre rifle in a heart beat.

    That said, I believe if you change just about anything, stocks, barrels, chambers, tuners, triggers, etc. etc. You have to own it from that point on.

    If you do have to go back to your smith you should be straight up with what you have done to the rifle since he last saw it. It may save you a lot of time and money.

    TKH

  4. #49
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    Tony,

    It's been a long time now, but there was a rifle Bill sold under circumstances I can only describe as amazing.

    And it was done on this website. Sorta. Bill had built a rifle that for some reason was not going to be bought by the person who originally intended to buy it. The name was never mentioned, obviously. During this time Bill was taking quite a bit of flack on here. What he did demonstrated how badly people wanted his work back then. It was an incredible thing to post. And man alive did he ever prove a point.

    He announced on a Sunday that the rifle would be available for sale on the following Friday at 8 PM. It would be priced at $10,300. The third fax offer would be the person who got it. Man alive did he ever take a beating on here for the rest of the week until Friday night. And then, like everyone else, I signed in to watch the show and perhaps make a post. I looked at how many people were signed in. It was amazing.

    That Friday at 8:05 Bill made a post that simply said "Transaction completed, thank you very much". People on here went nuts. YEARS later I saw a post on another forum where the first or second fax was supposed to have been for more than $10,300, and they did NOT get the rifle. The person making the post knew that bidder, and that bidder was supposed to have been pretty upset. I have seen all sorts of speculation as to who bought it, and whether or not it turned up in competition. Frankly, if the purchaser had been upset about anything I'd have thought it would have turned up in a post somewhere, but I never saw any. If someone wants something bad enough and they've worked their guts out to earn the money to get it, by all means, they should get it. And if a builder of something has worked his guts out and acquired the skills and knowledge to build something that is extremely expensive and get his price, he should get it.

    Was that one of the Spec rifles?

    If you'd rather not say, I understand.

    Take care,

    Greg

  5. #50
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    "And man alive did he ever prove a point."

    It sure did....it proved how greed, deception, and a few other choice personal characteristics ultimately got him banned.
    Perhaps, you should have let it rest.
    Sorry Tony.
    Last edited by tim; 04-06-2020 at 05:58 PM.

  6. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by tim View Post
    "And man alive did he ever prove a point."

    It sure did....it proved how greed, deception, and a few other choice personal characteristics ultimately got him banned.
    Perhaps, you should have let it rest.
    Sorry Tony.
    I know I may be sorry I ever made this post but being bored I'm going to do it anyway.

    I don't know all the details about the rifle being auctioned, but I do remember reading and hearing some things about it. I never knew, and still don't know why it upset so many people.

    Was it the fact that the highest bidder didn't get the rifle? From what I understand that was a very popular person at the time.

    Or the fact that Calfee was able to charge such a price?

    Again, I don't know all the details, but would like to understand why it became such a problem.

    I've always thought one was free to ask anything they wanted for their products, and it was for the buyers to determine if it is worth it.

    Perhaps many thought no rimfire benchrest rifle was worth that kind of money, and here was Calfee saying he would have so many offers he would just take the third offer that came in.

    Yes, that was a big ego talking but he turned out to be right. At least that is the way I understand it. If I'm wrong please fill me in.

    TKH

  7. #52
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    [QUOTE=tonykharper;833584]I found this info over on the wwaccuracy website. It is buried at the bottom and I thought this information belonged in this thread so I've copied it here.

    If anyone can shed more light on this story please post it I'm sure many would like to know.

    http://www.wwaccuracy.com/showthread...gedy-of-SPEC-9

    "The tragedy of SPEC 9

    CYA friends:

    The most important, and valuable, RFBR rifles ever produced are my very limited number of SPEC Rifles.

    My very limited number of SPEC rifles have produced a disproportionate number of Big National Championships and RFBR Records, for their numbers....

    There will never be another Calfee SPEC rifle built.

    This fact alone makes these Calfee SPEC rifles priceless.

    But all is not perfect...................

    CYA Friends, Tony "TDX" Harper has become the caretaker of the history of Calfee SPEC rifles.

    So I'll add some details to the their history

    There's one Calfee SPEC rifle that tested as bad as "Black Death", "Duke of Earl", "Merlin" and all the rest, that turned out to be an "also ran".

    SPEC 9

    The "Georgia Shaker".

    CYA friends, the Shaker started life by setting the Florida State IR-50 Record, with a 22X possible.

    This was back in 2009.....outdoors....

    And then........................................

    A self proclaimed "tuning expert" talked the Shaker's owner into doing the "Tuner Twist".....

    And one of the greatest Calfee SPEC rifles, "SPEC "9 went down hill from there...........

    What an absolute tragedy....................

    CYA friends, this may help you to understand why I rail against self appointed, tuning experts.

    It makes me literally sick to my stomach......

    Your friend, Bill Calfee

    NOTE: To see the pics you will have to go to the link on the wwaccuracy site
    http://www.wwaccuracy.com/showthread...gedy-of-SPEC-9

    Here's two pictures:

    Please look at them closely....

    Look at the marbling pattern just to the right of the bolt handle......closely.

    The top picture is of the original stock on the "Shaker"...

    The bottom picture is the same stock, but now on "Raging Inferno".

    I have no idea what stock is on the "Shaker" today.

    CYA friends, "Georgia Shaker", in my opinion, had the greatest potential of all of my SPEC rifles, including "Black Death", the "Duke", "Merlin", "Paladin" and SPEC 13, "Carolina Gold".

    I get literally sick to my guts every time I think about the "Shaker"...

    What a tragedy.. ...

    QUESTION: What stock is on the Shaker today and why was it changed???? Calfee used original Geogia Shaker stock on Chuck Morrells Raging Inferno aka (Ugly Betty) I would have gave it away too if I ever owned it!
    [B]Question #1 What Stock is on now on Palladin & Merlin ? Not The Original ones for Sure ! Triggers on Black Death & Big Dog ?? Have they Been Upgraded to B&A !
    Another question: If the stock is not original and the barrel isn't original is it still "The Georgia Shaker"??? I Still Have the 850 /0r .875 that Calfee installed 0n the Shaker for IR50 weight 10.5 ibs ! Nevershot it ! Calfee took the original stock off and it has been on several Calfee rifles , I had Tom Merideth install a Black KSS Solid Fill just Like Jeff Patterson put on Robert Oate`s Pallidin spec Rifle !Todd Wooten has made several updates on Merlin !( It now has a John Langley Barrel on it) The biggest Change that I made was putting the original PAS bolt that Emory had Allen Hall make it into a SAP Turbo ( A SAP Turbo ??) The Bolt was a Wreck and this was a chore finding a Flash Bolt ! Gene Corvin had Baity modify his Calfee Dixie Rattler to a Six o`clock FP and we we used that bolt body to correct the mess Allen made on Spec 9 ! Calfee put two Shilen Barrels on the Dixie Rattler (a Ratchet that was new and a Shilen Octagon that Gene used on it 100%) i Removed the dinky 850 which I still have and the 850 that Wayne Smith had put on it plus Wayne put a wooden laminated Gray stock that I gave to the West Virginia Humane society ! It has a FF Trigger in it now also ! It is in 150% better to day than back when ! better condition today than when Emory Smith gave Calfee $6500 for it back when which what folks paid for the spec rifles in the Time ! It Shoots very well with the updates and thanks to Gene Corvin it was made into a very PAS Calfee ,Flash Ebert Spec 9 ,"The Georgia Shaker" ! It a magnificent piece now and way better than the day it left Borden for about the 3rd Time ! Most of you know I am a Collector of Karl Kenyon Rifles ,not s Many as Mike Lowe owns ,but I cherish great pieces of work and I think I know how to restore the Mona Lisa if I had the Chance ! Come see it some time and judge for yourself !! If Calfee wants to Inspect Spec 9 and Crictigue it I can send it by Wally for him to give it the once over if he so desires!
    Last edited by Slick Willy; 04-06-2020 at 11:37 PM.

  8. #53
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    May 2010
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    359
    Slick,

    Thanks for the information on The Georgia Shaker, Spec 9. It has had a very interesting history. Hope to see it on the firing line one day.

    As you mentioned over the years many rifles have been updated particularly the triggers.

    When Bix and Andy came out with their benchrest Remington patterned triggers many shooters including me jumped on them.

    Later on when Flavio Fare (FF) came out with his Remington triggers even more people converted from what had been the benchrest standard for over 20 years, the Jewel trigger.

    That trigger conversion caused many shooters problems. The triggers were better, but in some cases installing the new trigger resulted in upsetting timing and ignition.

    It took awhile for that to get worked out.

    If you have more info on any brand of famous or well known benchrest rifles please share it here. If we don't write it down it will be lost forever.

    TKH

  9. #54
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    Feb 2014
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    102

    How many ?

    Tony,
    How many SPEC rifle were built ? I noticed a SPEC 13 "Carolina Gold" but I have read over on the WWA website, that SPEC 10 may be in the works. Did all the SPEC rifles have a name attached, like "Carolina Gold' "Black Death", "Duke of Earl", "Merlin" "Ga. Shaker" AKA "Gone with the Wind" ? I seem to remember Brandon Allred having a couple of Calfee rifles, one of which was named General Lee, another that was Spec ?? something, maybe Paladin.

  10. #55
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    359
    Quote Originally Posted by George Atkins View Post
    Tony,
    How many SPEC rifle were built ? I noticed a SPEC 13 "Carolina Gold" but I have read over on the WWA website, that SPEC 10 may be in the works. Did all the SPEC rifles have a name attached, like "Carolina Gold' "Black Death", "Duke of Earl", "Merlin" "Ga. Shaker" AKA "Gone with the Wind" ? I seem to remember Brandon Allred having a couple of Calfee rifles, one of which was named General Lee, another that was Spec ?? something, maybe Paladin.
    George,

    These are all the Calfee Spec rifles there has ever been.

    SPEC 4. Merlin.
    SPEC 5. Black Death
    SPEC 6. Duke Of Earl
    SPEC 7. Paladin.
    SPEC 8. Marcia
    SPEC 9. Georgia Shaker
    SPEC 13. Carolina Gold

    If you go back to the first pages of this thread I tried to cover the history of them.
    Hopefully you will find it an interesting read.

    There may or may not ever be a Spec 10. Many of us are trying to convince/shame Calfee into building it.

    TKH

  11. #56
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    Don't think you will have to push too hard for Spec 10 to materialize.
    Last edited by George Atkins; 04-19-2020 at 06:30 PM.

  12. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by tim View Post
    "And man alive did he ever prove a point."

    It sure did....it proved how greed, deception, and a few other choice personal characteristics ultimately got him banned.
    Perhaps, you should have let it rest.
    Sorry Tony.
    Howdy Tim,

    Goodness Tim........your post is fake news.

    You do more harm to yourself than you do to Bill when you do this stuff.

    It's been long enough for your post to have had a lot of views now, so I might as well show you what others see in it that you obviously can not.

    I posted accurate details about the rifle Calfee sold. It was not an auction. He set a price (now that I've had time to ponder it I really think it might have been $11,300 instead of $10,300) and said the third fax at 8:00PM that Friday with that offer got the rifle. I mentioned that someone posted on another site YEARS later that they knew someone else who sent a fax offer of MORE than Calfee's stated price, on an earlier fax than number three, and did not get the rifle. Since I have found in the past that the most effective way to refute your posts is to use your own words against you, I'll do it that way.

    IF CALFEE WAS GREEDY HE WOULD HAVE TAKEN THE HIGHER OFFER.

    IF HE WAS DECEPTIVE HE WOULD HAVE TOLD THE THIRD FAX SENDER HE WAS TOO LATE AS HE TOOK THE HIGHER OFFER.

    But that did not happen.

    Amusingly enough, you destroyed your own accusation the moment you made it, Tim.

    And as far as the rest of your post, Bill was not banned here. I have already found the posts from around the time period to prove it if necessary, but I'm not interested in going back and forth with you on this thread.

    I see that I have a PM from you. Before I open it, is it classy? Or did you send something a middle school debate student could refute?

    I asked a valid question about the most expensive Calfee rifle ever sold, to my knowledge. "Was it a Spec rifle?"......you didn't have an answer, only an illogical attack. Which was easily debunked.....

    Sometimes wisdom or valid advice can come from sources you would not expect to say it. When I post again I will include something that fits in that category that you may find useful. Beyond that, as I said, I'm not interested in going back and forth with you on this thread. And I will try to post an answer soon to my simple question "was it a Spec rifle?", since this is a thread about Spec rifles.

  13. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by George Atkins View Post
    Don't think you will have to push too hard for Spec 10 to materialize.
    Howdy George,

    I think you are correct, he keeps making posts about it. It should be interesting to follow along on the build.

    Take care,

    Greg

  14. #59
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    Pictures needed!

    If anyone out there has pictures of any of the Spec rifles would you please send them to me or post them here.

    I put up some pics on the first post in this thread but would like as many others as I can find.

    As a matter of fact if you have pics of any other RFBR rifle that has great accomplishments please post them here

    TKH

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by tonykharper; 05-04-2020 at 09:53 AM.

  15. #60
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    spec 8

    A friend of mine is the original owner of the spec 8 and still has it.

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