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Blog Post Featured Image

Little and Large. 2 Westley Richards Carved Double Rifles in .600NE and .243.

I think it was early 2000 when these rifles were commissioned. A large bore Hand Detachable lock rifle in .600 NE and a small bore in .243 Winchester, both to be deep carved engraved with scenes of Africa of the .600 and American game for the .243 Winchester. Two rifles which show the range we build in our rifles, from very large to small.

Westley Richards Droplocks in .600 and .243.

Whilst we have made quite a few .600 rifles in recent years I do believe this is the first and only .243 that we made. I say this cautiously as last time I quoted 'a first' calibre someone turned up a previous rifle we had made in the very same calibre, luckily a bullet variation of that calibre allowed me to side step that embarrasment.

Westley Richards Droplocks in .600 and .243.

The proportions of a large rifle and a small rifle are dramatically different but perhaps not as much as you would expect. The .243 is a petite rifle, but here looks quite large. The governing factor is the size of the action needs to be able to withstand the proof test pressure of the round being built for. The .243 is indeed a small bullet but with a large case and develops a pressure of approximately 60,000psi whereas the .600 is 36,000psi as a comparison. The .600 weighs 14lbs 8ozs and the .243 8lbs 3oz.

Each rifle is cased in an individual black alligator covered oak case fitted with sterling silver case fittings and with bright red goat skin lining and french fitted Ivory tooling. The rifles are part of the collection now housed here at Westley Richards.

Westley Richards Droplocks in .600 and .243.

The engraving work on both rifles was executed by Peter Spode. Peter first started working for us in the early 90's whilst at the same time also filling the role of headmaster at a boys school in Malvern. I think I possibly urged him to take early retirement so he could work on our guns full time, something which he has been doing now for many years. Peter is an extremely talented engraver with the rare ability to execute work in a variety of styles and he is also a person who continues with his teaching background by sharing his extensive knowledge and helping engravers entering the field with technique.

Westley Richards Droplocks in .600 and .243.

Westley Richards .600 NE grip cap carved.The Lion Mask Grip Trap on the .600 Rifle.


  • Peter on May 1, 2016 at 11:37 am

    Dear Simon

    Be it a rifle or a shotgun, bag or some other goods that you produce, it never stops to amaze me how tasteful and beautiful everything is made. A double rifle in .243 may never have been on my wishlist,but after seeing this rifle I think paired with a .600 and a.375 ,maybe that would be the ultimate all around the world trio. As always my lousy English keeps me from expressing me the way I would like to, but a big thank you for showing all the great things you've got in your vault.
    Best regards

  • Neill on May 1, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    Lovely work, and I agree with Peter, the .243, a.375 and a.600, what more do you need?

  • Neill on May 1, 2016 at 2:04 pm

    Simon. A cheeky request but I love your photos. Any chance of a copy of the first photo showing both rifles and cartridges- I've a .600NE round on my study desk as a curio? The picture would only go on the wall, no further, you have my word.


    • Simon Clode on May 1, 2016 at 2:46 pm

      I will have Rachel contact you and arrange this. Thank you for your loyal following!!

      • Neill on May 1, 2016 at 3:10 pm

        Thanks Simon, really appreciated.

  • Mims C Reed on May 1, 2016 at 2:35 pm

    I am fortunate to own a beautiful small caliber (250/3000) Westley Richards double rifle finished according to your ledger in 1926.
    Come October I hope to use it to take several Whitetail deer at my ranch in west Texas.
    It is a pleasure to read and see such beautiful firearms as the 600 and 243 in this dispatch.

    • Simon Clode on May 1, 2016 at 2:49 pm

      Mims it is nice to hear it is still in use, mind you it is not even 100 yet so hopefully it will be hunting the ranch for many years more!


      • Mims C Reed on May 1, 2016 at 4:34 pm

        You could come hunt with it while you are stateside during all the conventions.

        • Simon Clode on May 1, 2016 at 4:41 pm

          Thank you, next year perhaps!


  • Larry on May 2, 2016 at 8:29 am

    Quite a grand pair, I really enjoy the lines and contour of the 243. Just out of curiosity, are these consecutive numbered?

    • Simon Clode on May 2, 2016 at 8:43 am

      Yes they are!

  • Morten on May 2, 2016 at 9:38 am

    Hi Simon, and thank you for your fantastic blogg. its a real deal. Your reply to the continental versus enlish guntrade was epic with H&W and Boss & Co OU's

    Anyway, I noticed on these two double rifle you have a shadowline on the stock behind the pistol grip. any reason for this? Is this WR standard?, may you have more exaples of this where it is seen better? I dont know if I like it yet.

    • Simon Clode on May 2, 2016 at 11:51 am

      I think the best answer is that nothing is standard 'as such' on a bespoke gun or rifle, we deliver what the client requests. In that respect there will always be some details that some people like and some dislike. Foremost the client has to like it and of course then I have to like it to put our name on it!!

      With regard the shadow line we have made rifles with this detail before.

  • Vance Daigle on May 2, 2016 at 11:17 am

    Holy Crap Batman,

    Simon I recall reading that you are a big fan of a pair of Double Rifles. Well that doesn't ring my bell as much as seeing these two Rifles. One in such a BEAST of a Cal and one tha is such a petite cal....same deep style of engraving. They are both really great, especially the engraving on the .600 in my humble opinion. Now this is a pair of guns, while not matching I cannot recall seeing much as sexy as these two in my eyes. The only other thought would be a pair of guns-not matching but same overall appearence- one double rifle and one shotgun together, in matching cases....28g and a .577.

    Great pictues of really great guns, talk about contrast in dimensions. Now it's my turn to take a poke at the other so called great "London Builders" that I think read this blog as much as I do. Can any of you guys accomplish something as wonderful as this...I think not!!!! Let me get off my soap box!!!! Thanks for the pictures Simon,

    In Christ

    • Larry on May 6, 2016 at 9:25 am

      If they could, they would!

  • Clive Newman on May 3, 2016 at 8:53 am

    The beast and a kitten.
    A superb looking pair of guns with beautiful lines,
    The deep engraving work on both rifles is just exquisite,and I love the lion mask
    .600 is a bit rich for me to much hurt for the shoulder.
    Great blog Simon.
    Oh almost forgot any chance of some pics showing the rifle cases and tools.



    • Simon Clode on May 3, 2016 at 9:36 am

      Thank you. I am afraid they are put away now but I will see if I have an older photo of the cases to add on. This was weekend work and I asked for the rifles to be left in my safe and didn't get the cases!!


  • Ned Cowell on May 18, 2016 at 5:21 am

    How stunning! More superb photographs of peerless rifles - what a pleasure to see. On a technical note, how is the .243 rifle regulated? I see that it is equipped to take a scope, and a scope would certainly seem desirable to exploit the potential of a flat shooting round like the .243. But internet lore (not necessarily to be replied upon, I am aware) suggests that the weight of the scope affects the relationship in points of impact between the two barrels, and that if it is regulated with iron sights the fitting of a scope will cause a variance in points of impact such that one has to zero the scope to one barrel and treat the rifle as a single shot when using the scope. If regulated while wearing a scope (is that even possible?) then by the same logic the iron sights would be of limited use. I would love to hear that this is all nonsense, and that both barrels of this delightful rifle will shoot to the sights whether the irons or a scope is used - making it an entirely viable alternative to a bolt action for stalking deer at 'normal' ranges.



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