Gun builder question

Discussion in 'Long Range Hunting & Shooting' started by Tnwhip, Sep 10, 2013.

  1. Tnwhip

    Tnwhip Well-Known Member

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    I have a friend that inherited a rifle that has J. La Bantchni Maker on the barrel. I am not sure of what kind of action it has. The bolt release on the left side like a Ruger. The safety is on the right and slides forward. It is a nice custom rifle in 6.5-06. He has paper work with it that has load data from 1966. I will take some pictures the next time I go over to see him. Can anyone tell me anything about the gun maker?
     
  2. MudRunner2005

    MudRunner2005 Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like an old 1903 Springfield action to me.

    Jules La Bantchni, born 1909, died 1983. Owner of Olympic Custom Guns, 2202 Pico Ave in Santa Monica, CA.

    Other than that, I can find virtually zero info on the man, other than people saying they had rifles that were stamped J. La Bantchni. Or that they had a rifle built by him. And it appears that he loved the Springfield 1903 action, because from what I've read today, those are the only types of guns I'm seeing listed when his name pops up.

    Here's one for sale.

    La Bantchni Springfield Sporter 30-06 - American Sporting Rifles
     

  3. squeezenhope

    squeezenhope Well-Known Member

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    Sounds more like a commercial Mauser to me. Jules catered to the Hollywood crowd and made a lot of large caliber dangerous game rifles. He was multi-talented in that he did metal work, stock work and engraving. Very solid reputation.
     
  4. Tnwhip

    Tnwhip Well-Known Member

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    Re: Some pictures

    What do we have here.
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  5. MudRunner2005

    MudRunner2005 Well-Known Member

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    Looks like a modified Mauser 98 to me...
     
  6. benchracer

    benchracer Well-Known Member

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    That is a commercial mauser 98. The bolt handle and commercial shroud are standard Mark X. The absence of a thumb cut on the left side of the receiver indicates it is a commercial receiver rather than a military one.

    That is a beautiful rifle!
     
  7. Tnwhip

    Tnwhip Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, I thought it was a Mauser but was not sure. Yes, it is a beautiful rifle. The owner was a Boeing engineer and has all kind of calclulations, formulars and grafts for bullet drop and energy with the loads he was shooting, dating back to 1966 , in the papers that are with the rifle, That we take for granted with our computers today.They were writen on the back of papers that had formulars where they were calulating friction and drag on the airplanes. I thought that was neat. We have the dies on back order and hope to shoot it before November. We have not taken the action out of the stock but the one thing I did notis about the rifle is, the barrel is not free floated.
     
  8. benchracer

    benchracer Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't necessarily draw any conclusions about the barrel being freefloated until you shoot the rifle some. Freefloating the barrel is the more accepted way of doing things these days, but it is not the only way.

    That rifle looks very well crafted. I would advise caution in changing anything around without careful prior investigation.
     
  9. angus-5024

    angus-5024 Well-Known Member

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    that is a beautiful rifle!!
    I wouldn't open that barrel channel even if it shot very poorly. That is too fine a rifle to tinker with.

    It would make a really cool display piece in a glass gun safe. Put some of those notes on drag and force of friction in there with it.
     
  10. Tnwhip

    Tnwhip Well-Known Member

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    No, we are not going to change anything. It will be left as is. We are just going to work up some loads and see how it shoots. He ask me about changing the scope to something more powerful and I told him no, leave it alone. It is an old 2x7 Redfield. Everything about this rifle is classic and should stay like it is. It has one target that was in the paper work and it has a 5 shot 100 yd. group of .865. The load was 54.5 g 4831, 140 Sierra BT. 2849 ave. Chronographed at Hutton Ranch 11-20-66. Here are some of his calulations and the scrap paper they were written on.
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  11. lesaleelou

    lesaleelou New Member

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    Good morning...My husband was Jules Labatchni's stepson. He was 6 or 7 when his mom married him in 1958 or 9. He worked with him in his Santa Monica gunship up until his college years after which Jules and his mother divorced. He tells me so many amazing memories about watching Jules make guns, carve metal, and even make his own tools. I am an artist myself and I marvel at the metal work on the few Internet photos we have been able to find.

    He recalls movie stars.. Robert Wagner, Clark Gable ...coming to their house to pick-up guns Jules made for them. Jules used to take him shooting to Roy Rogers' ranch (for whom - if I remember correctly - he made custom pistols). He apparently also crafted a gun for Hemingway.

    I am going on a quest to try and find one of Jules' guns to buy as a surprise for my husband. I don't even know where to start - or even if I can afford it.

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated
     
  12. mountainman56

    mountainman56 Well-Known Member

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    Great story lesaleelou. Doesn't seem to be a lot of them out there but good luck with your search.

    Beautiful rifle. I love the old customs. I wouldn't change a thing. I would shoot it to get it out of my system, clean it and put it on display. Then I would build a new rifle in the same cartridge.
     
  13. Kermeg

    Kermeg New Member

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    Hi, I know this is a old thread but I can add something to it. My recently deceased Step dad was a friend of Jules and knew him quite well. My first memory of Jules was of his shop and walking with him and my Dad down a scary alley to a cafe for lunch. Later I asked my Dad if it was dangerous for Jules to walk in that alley by himself ( Jules did the walk every day)? My Dad laughed and said that Jules had arms like steel cables from carving on steel and wood and would beat the heck out of anybody who bothered him. I will post more info and pictures of some of his Imperial Grade rifles later. Even as a kid I loved to visit Jules at his shop and later at his house. Jules is truly a forgotten Master Engraver and Gun Smith who has not gotten the recognition that he deserves.
     
  14. Kermeg

    Kermeg New Member

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    Here are a few pictures of one. Others are available if there is interest?
     

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