x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

The trick to making a special weapon

Hand-processed parts and precision design mark VO Gun & Rifle Maker Sweden's wares.

Fjälkinge, Sweden //Viggo Olsson, the founder of VO Gun & Rifle, explains the steps involved in hand-making a rifle using only the highest-quality materials.

First you poke around the highlands of south-eastern Europe for the walnut root for the gun's stock.

"We go to sites in Bulgaria located 2,000 metres above sea level," Mr Olsson says of the company's secret site.

"We pick out which trees we want, and then two men with an old Russian tank come and pull up the roots.

"Only three planks per root can be used, which first must be dried at different humidities for up to five years."

The gunsmiths finish the metal parts by hand and the barrels are refined within the particular VO barrel profile. Together with the stock, the barrels are designed for various calibres, perfect balance and shooting comfort.

The walnut is oiled with up to 20 coats before the result passes quality tests.

One of the most challenging parts is to cut the checkering, which requires great concentration. Each line is cut by hand four to five times and must be completely straight.

"If one cut goes wrong, you have to throw the piece away and start from scratch," Mr Olsson said. "That's not so funny."

The more expensive weapons are adorned with detailed engravings. Ulf Olsson, Viggo's son, makes the sketches that are sent to European engravers.

"We use engravers from Sweden, Belgium, Italy and Romania. For a rifle, we can use up to five different engraving techniques," he said.

The rifles are constructed with the takedown system, a patented technique designed by Ulf Olsson that makes it possible to use multiple calibres in one rifle.

"This will simplify travelling for the hunter," said Jonas Althén, the company's marketing director.

"The rifles are supplied in small rifle cases where you have at least two pipes with which you can hunt everything."