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 Post subject: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2009 8:54 pm 
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Most of you are aware that DeVault recently built the stock for Bill McGuire's new Blaser. They also added a delrin rib to it. Last week I went there to get info for an article. I thought I would offer a few observations here.

First off, the folks there are great to deal with--professional, friendly and they want to make you happy. I had long been toying with the idea of a custom rib and they cut one for me while I was there. It is a bit more of a process than most would suspect. Mine was on the machines for about 3 hours. The ribs are custom fit to the gun. It all starts with a CAD program, then the shaping. The end result looks like it grew on the gun. My specifications produced exactly the results I was looking for. After years of trying to get all the changes from the stock, it was quite interesting to approach it from the other end of the gun.

Their package for 391's offers much more than first meets the eye. They have designed a forearm with more radius in the bottom and finger grooves that feels sooo much better than the stock forearm. It includes a rib to specs. A fitting is included in the price, a pattern stock make while you wait and a finished stock produced in line with their other guns.

The stock design is a little funky looking, but the funk produces some good things! Obviously, if the rib is raised, the comb will need to be raised, and it is. The higher comb necessitates a Monte Carlo to get the gun comfortably on the shoulder. If one chooses a higher rib, there can be quite a drop to the heel. The grip is delightfully contoured to the hand. Dennis strongly suggests that the trigger finger be straight on the grip, instead of the curved wrist, tension inducing grips found on most factory stocks. I agree with those thoughts, but found I was so used to bending the wrist, that it took a conscious effort to get low enough on the grip to straighten the finger. That hand position reqires a bit lower grip, hence the somewhat radical bottom line on the stock. When you get done, the stock is comfortable enough to curl up on and go to sleep.

You won't be shooting a pattern plate. You'll get set up on the gun and go shoot some targets to finalize the dimensions. That, in my estimation, is the ultimate way to fit a gun. Pattern plates can lie because many shooters won't use the same mount on a moving target they use on a plate.

The same work is obviously done on over unders. The stocks are finished with a 1500 grit wet sand and buffing. The finish is perfect.

Their single barrel trap gun, the Infinity, is built heck for stout, but wonderfully balanced. At slightly over 9 lbs, the one I handled ran around like an 8 pounder.

If you are tired of chasing the perfect gun around, give some consideration to DeVault's approach. It may not be a traditional looking stock or rib, but it produces a gun so darned functional and comfortable to shoot, you won't care.

The rib I had them cut is a bit unconventional, but it instantly produced the results I was after. I haven't been this excited about my shooting for a long time. The profile offsets some of the vision issues I have been trying, with less than stellar success, to deal with in a conventional way. My 391 just became priceless. It looks like heck with my temporary stock modifications, but there isn't a presentation I don't shoot more consistently.

I've been lucky enough to get to visit a lot of gun related businesses. By way of comparison, I will simply say that from top to bottom and front to back, none is more professional or committed to customer satisfaction than DeVault. I wouldn't hesitate to send anyone to them, unless it was someone I wanted to continue beating!
Dave


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Sun Mar 08, 2009 9:02 pm 
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Pictures, pictures - we want pictures! :lol:

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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2009 10:11 am 
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Parallel Comb or slightly angled? TR.


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2009 3:41 pm 
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Seamus,
Check out their website: http://www.devaultind.com/

They'll makeover your 391 for a mere $2200!

Pricey, but very cool.


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 Post subject: Re: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2009 5:42 pm 
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TR wrote:
Parallel Comb or slightly angled? TR.



It would be interesting to hear back from Dave to see if he has finally seen the light with parallel or near parallel combs.





.


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2009 6:14 pm 
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Pricey? Sounds like it at first, but in the realm of custom stocks, it is hard to get one built anywhere for much less than $2000. Standard wood is English walnut at a blank price of $600--nice wood--with varying grades of "knock your socks off" stuff priced accordingly. They fit each stock with an adjustable comb and their own extended bolt release. The price includes a fitting if desired. Stack it all up and while it isn't cheap, it is reasonable in today's market. (Nobody else can give you the rib you want as part of the package.) There are recoil reducers on the market that cost almost as much to have installed.

I suppose one could say it is simply too much to put into a 391, but with Beretta charging what they are now for the Teknys and selling a bunch of them, it seems folks are willing to spend a bunch on an auto.

On the other hand, is it that much to spend on a soft shooting
target gun with a rib to your specifications, molded to your body with the adjustable comb installed so those 20 pound weight changes can be managed? You can't get into a custom fit gun for much less and you can't get another that offers quite the choice of items on the DeVault menu. Value is in the eyes of the beholder.

TR,
I don't know on the comb. It is pretty flat. Since they build the pattern stock while you are there, measurements aren't taken, although they would be if you asked. Dennis didn't care and neither did I. We both knew it was right and that was the important part.

I have a stock on order, but since I have to deal with a couple chronic aches and pains, they are going to leave it a touch proud and I will finish the comb myself. The offset comb, and I need a lot of offset, may influence the final dimensions very slightly, but it will be quite near my usual 1 5/8 x 1 7/8 with a healthy Monte Carlo to address a shoulder issue as well as a grip moved quite a bit forward to accommodate the arthritis in my hands.

Having cast cut in instead of the bending and cutting I usually do, with a grip that actually fits my hand and the drop I need at the heel to get the butt down on my shoulder, combined with the rib profile that seems to suit my eyes and shooting so well, has me about as excited about a gun as I can get. Gone is the classic styling I've always liked, but it's all about hitting targets. I've been doing that at a noticably higher level with the new rib and cobbled up stock than I have for years. It will only get better when the buttstock is added to the package.
Dave


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 Post subject: Re: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2009 6:30 pm 
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Dave Holmes wrote:
Pricey? Sounds like it at first, but in the realm of custom stocks, it is hard to get one built anywhere for much less than $2000. Standard wood is English walnut at a blank price of $600--nice wood--with varying grades of "knock your socks off" stuff priced accordingly. They fit each stock with an adjustable comb and their own extended bolt release. The price includes a fitting if desired. Stack it all up and while it isn't cheap, it is reasonable in today's market.


Dave , as we age the price of a well fitted Auto is counter-balanced by the possible doctors visit and neck/shoulder surgeries that may occur being stubborn and insisting on shooting a double.You can never beat the felt recoil of a gas Auto. The wood can always be transfered to another 391 if and when you should ever wear it out. To me its money well spent. :wink:



>


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Mon Mar 09, 2009 9:16 pm 
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Perazzi 01,
Posted: Mon Mar 09, 2009 4:42 pm Post subject: Re: re: DeVault Industries--all good!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

TR wrote:
Parallel Comb or slightly angled? TR.



It would be interesting to hear back from Dave to see if he has finally seen the light with parallel or near parallel combs

I think that is a subtle reference to the article I wrote. :lol: It seems a lot of folks saw the "I don't think parallel is the best part " but didn't catch my recommendation, which was that most folks seem better served by about 1/4" drop on the comb rather than the flat comb. My thinking is that 1/4" on the comb is nearly parallel, so I've never disagreed with anyone who says "near" or "almost" parallel. I would be willing to bet a buck that in a blind "taste" test, more shooters would prefer a stock with the 1/4" drop than a stock with a truly parallel comb.
Dave


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 Post subject: Re: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2009 12:08 am 
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Dave Holmes wrote:
Perazzi 01,
Posted: Mon Mar 09, 2009 4:42 pm Post subject: Re: re: DeVault Industries--all good!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

TR wrote:
Parallel Comb or slightly angled? TR.



It would be interesting to hear back from Dave to see if he has finally seen the light with parallel or near parallel combs

I think that is a subtle reference to the article I wrote. :lol: It seems a lot of folks saw the "I don't think parallel is the best part "



The article was very negative in the parallel to near parallel department with all sorts of examples of why not to choose one. It seemed off to me as I have enjoyed great success in shooting parallel for some time , along with much less felt recoil. It was a panacea for me in determining to sell or keep a new DT10 that I had tried everything to quell recoil , from pitch changes , to extremely light loads that I had no confidence with , to a recoil device in the buttplate, etc, etc. , nothing seemed to work. I didn't want to get rid of the beautiful wood and I tried to make it work , but once I bolted on a Wenig parallel stock the difference was amazing and the DT10 stayed. Its good to see that you might agree that its benefits far outway any negatives. As in all things this is just my opinion as it was in your article.



.


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2009 1:22 pm 
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Dave, thanks for the reply. It sounds like there is a slight angle. I enjoyed your artical in Clay Shooting USA with regards to measuring. You nailed it. Hell, they even let Barry write one too. It is always good to see his name in print. TR.


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2009 5:55 pm 
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The DeVault design looks radical :shock: Dave I will be interested to see how you like this design for SC targets.

While the looks of this design are unusual I for one would shoot a twisted pretzel if thats what gave me the best peformance. Hell, maybe that pretzel is a good idea :D

RTA48


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2009 6:10 pm 
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I am especially intrigued by the grafted walnut stock photos. Until now, the only grafted I had seen was on Taylor Guitars. I always thought it would make a superb gunstock. Very cool indeed.

It took me 3 years to finally buy my Taylor...maybe now I have another project to lust after.

Check out the video on grafted walnut at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vrkURFcnGDs


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2009 8:08 pm 
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Probably a silly question but then I don't know anything about anything. Is the line where the two woods grafted together strong enough to take the pounding of thousands and thousands of rounds of ammo? In other words, is there any susceptibility to cracking or parting along that line?

KK

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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2009 9:08 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 29, 2006 10:29 am
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There might be a problem with a graft line in the wrist, but this stock was laid out with the graft line in the body of the stock as I would imagine all of them would be. The wood grows together, so there should be no strength/breakage issues at all in a lower stress area of the stock.
Dave


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Tue Mar 10, 2009 11:40 pm 
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Dave,
Glad to hear that you are so excited about your new stock and rib. I do understand the concept of pretty is as pretty does, but I would rather quit shooting than be seen with an ugly gun. Their work looks excellent, but I can not stand that style of stock. Sorry, just personal preference. Several friends of mine have been bitten by the McGuire bug and put high ribs on their guns. They have all taken them off and had a stock built that fits them and are very, very happy. I hang out at a trap/skeet/5-stand club a bit and see a few trap shooters with the all plastic/steel recoil reducing stocks on their guns. They get the job done, but it makes me puke when I see one on a nice engraved target gun. I big part of why I like shooting is the guns - I like looking at and shooting well made attractive guns. I get happy just seeing someone else shooting a pretty gun. I am an absolute shotgun freak. Long live traditional looking guns!
Regards,
Jeff


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2009 8:03 am 
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Location: Canton, Ohio
To TJ,

I can answer your question on the comb, it is parallel but not in the conventional method. We do not use the rib line or rib angle to create the comb height. Everything we do in the stock is created from the bore center-line. In todays guns it is the only thing left that is not adjustable. The stock design was created by using geometric lines and angle. So yes Dave is going to shoot a parellel comb just not fashioned the normal way.

Dennis DeVault


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 Post subject: re: DeVault Industries--all good!
PostPosted: Fri Mar 13, 2009 9:48 am 
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To add a bit to Dennis' reply, the shape of the comb tends to "cradle" the face more than a traditionally styled comb. There simply seems to be a bit more contact area as in the course of the fitting, the stock is shaped to the face. Hence the face seems a bit more "locked" in position, although that shouldn't imply any tension, because there is none. It's kind of like laying your face on a comfortable pillow. The comb line rolls over above the actual contact point with the cheek, so there simply is nowhere the face/eye can go but the right spot. If you try to put it anywhere else, the contour will put your eye right back where it goes. It isn't an apples to apples comparison with a conventional stock, as Dennis explained.

As JNW noted, it isn't conventional in appearance, either, although some of the guns on the website feature ribs almost twice as high as mine. I gave a great deal of thought to the rib height, which Dennis quickly said was personal choice. Mine is not so high as to get completely away from the gun, but it is high enough to give a wonderfully clear view of the target with the receiver of the gun far enough from central vision that it can't draw the attention of my one good eye. I wish I could tell you how it worked with two eyes, but I can't.

I can tell you my two-eyed friend, who shoots measurements quite similar to mine, picked up the gun with the high rib and a built up stock and only missed one target with a box of shells on a five trap practice field with most of the targets in the 35-45 yard range, with some interesting pairs in the mix.

The real beauty is in the function of the package. I've often said I would shoot a rusty fence post with barbed wire hanging off it if I could hit with it, so it is obvious that function is my top priority. Obviously, not everyone will feel that way and there's nothing wrong with that.

I can also say that I'm shooting this setup far more consistently than I've shot for several years. That comes from someone who has tinkered in every conceivable direction with the gun, lenses and me trying to get back to where I was before the hip replacements and RA "stole my thunder". I can still miss a target, but when I step in the cage, I don't think it's going to happen. I would encourage anyone with vision issues to consider the approach.

Build up your rib with a narrow configuration and build the stock up to match the increase in height. If you go with a wide rib, I can see where the blob in front of your eye could be a distraction. With the narrow rib, there's nothing to see but the target with a fuzzy, narrow black stripe for a reference point.

The heads up position gets your eyes looking through the lens much closer to the optical center, where vision is the sharpest. It takes all the strain out of the neck. Not everybody needs it, not all will like it. Those who have battled with a conventional approach may find it a little bit of heaven.
Dave


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