P. O. Ackley's personal rifle [Archive] - Varmints Den

: P. O. Ackley's personal rifle

01-05-2011, 06:37 AM
A gunsmith friend of mine came by for a visit last night. He brought
over a little eye candy and a piece of history. A rifle built and owned
by P. O. Ackley. 98 Mauser FN action made in Belgium. Caliber was
6 x 47 (off 222 mag case). John thought the stock was a Harrington-
Richardson Ultra copy. Beautiful with a huge cheek piece.
Canjar set trigger. John bought the gun from a famous Nashville
gunsmith from the 60's and 70's Harry Creighton. Creighton and
Ackley got together for shooting matches. Back in those days
Creighton came to Dixon Springs to shoot with a couple of my neighbors.
When I was a small child I heard those 243's, 222's, 30-06's booming on
the neighbors farm. I will always remember those big boomers on Sunday's.
John Smith, Vietnam Vet, is a retired Air Force armorer. John has visited
Mr. Ackley in his home and thinks he remembers seeing this gun at his
house. Creighton got the gun from Ackley.







01-05-2011, 08:08 AM
Great story and pics. I have 3 of Ackleys books, I've read them so much the print is begining to fade :D That stock looks like it would just melt into your hands. I have a 30/06 built on a FN Belgium Mauser but it don't look that nice. Thanks.

01-05-2011, 08:09 AM
Very nice indeed!!

01-05-2011, 10:40 AM
That sure is a great rifle and wonderful history. The stocks from the H&R Ultra rifles were made from Fajen Aristocrat stocks that have foreend tips and grip tips of rosewood. The cheekpiece and the low, flat foreend are similarly shaped as the P.O. Ackley rifle of the picture, but the sculpted wrist of that rifle is not the same as on the H&R stock. The H&R rifle I have is an Ultra-Medalist 370, FN Mauser 98 action in .243 Winchester.

John in CA.
01-05-2011, 10:52 AM
A real nice piece of history there Birdog. Thanks for sharing. In 1987 I had a .308 with a nice Canjar set trigger. Does your gunsmith friend still shoot this particular gun?

charlie sterner
01-05-2011, 11:01 AM
That looks sweet and I'll bet it shoots bugholes.

We had a rifle in the shop several years ago that had "P.O. Ackley" stamped on the sporter barrel. I believe it was an Interarms action with pretty wood stock, although not that style. I think I remembered it was in .30-06. I have no idea if it was one of Ackley's personal rifles or not, but it was definitely put together by him. It was in great shape for an old rifle, and I eyed it up for about 2 years until it finally sold. I could have bought it cheap, but I really had no use for it at the time. Now looking back, I wish I'd have bought it.

george in KY
01-05-2011, 11:01 AM
love them old varmint guns :)

01-05-2011, 12:04 PM
birdog Not to stesl your post But I have 3 rifles that Harry made for me back in the Late 60' s both on Mauser 98s 6m/m Rem &358 Win . I worked near his shop on 10th ave & had lunch with hin almost every day. He was a mentor to me and a fine man

01-05-2011, 12:29 PM
Wow, great stuff.............

Hey Red Mule.........I bet I'm not the only one that would love to hear a few stories about the ol barrel maker............

01-05-2011, 12:31 PM
A real nice piece of history there Birdog. Thanks for sharing. In 1987 I had a .308 with a nice Canjar set trigger. Does your gunsmith friend still shoot this particular gun?

John told me he has never fired the gun. That's one way to keep her

01-05-2011, 12:43 PM
Very nice. Excellent conversation piece.

fred in Co
01-05-2011, 12:57 PM
very nice rifle lucky you:D

01-05-2011, 12:59 PM
John was stationed in I believe he said Colorado for a time. While there
he paid frequent visits to Ackley's shop. He said that he was in awe of
Mr. Ackley and even though he acted like an ordinary man, John
put him on an extremely high pedestal.
When P. O. died there was a huge back log of high dollar guns in the
shop waiting to be tuned or rebuilt. John told me about Mr. Ackley's
filing system. When he took in your gun or your order he wrote it down
on a piece of paper and put it on a clothes pin. Every time Ackley got
a call from you he would move your order up one spot. I guess it paid
off to pester him with a phone call every month or even every week.
John loved to go to the shop and sit and watch the customers come
in and interact with Ackley.
Once John was driving from Tenn. back out west to his base. He
stopped one night at mid-night in East St. Louis for gas. He was getting
sleepy and asked the station owner if he could sleep for a while in the
parking lot. The owner said he was closing but it was a bad neighbor-
hood and he would not advise it. John decided to go ahead and sleep
there anyway. He got his plillow and laid over in the car seat and went
to sleep. Two hours later TAP, TAP, TAP on the window. The car was
surrounded by six young guys from the hood. John had his hand under his
pillow and when he raised up he asked them how they liked his 44 Magnum.
Those boys scattered like a grenade.
John was exposed to agent orange and has many health issues. But his
visits are always interesting. His wife Giesla is from Germany and worked
with me at a local Pharmacy for several years.
John stopped by the back porch range one day and we were shooting
6 BR's and Dashers. He could not believe the groups and then I set the
hook. I made him sit down at the bench and try one. Next time I saw
him he had a BR and last night he showed me his Octagonal Bat.

george in KY
01-05-2011, 02:42 PM
thats cool man :D

01-07-2011, 09:19 PM