I had some spare time today so thought I'd try to design a better bolt holder for the Blaser. I know that some people keep their bolts in the rifles, but I've always been taught to keep them separate, and I also wanted something that I could carry the bolt around in when travelling and leaving the stock/action in the car. I have a couple of the bags from Calton Moor Range, and very nice they are too, but I've always had a thing for leather so decided it was high time to spend the day in the workshop
I started by sketching a plan onto paper and making a couple of copies. This was so I could paste the copy onto the leather giving me an accurate pattern for cutting out.
I then realised that I didn't much fancy using the bolt itself to form the leather, so I also set to and made up a wooden blank.
Having done this, I cut out the leather and stitched the belt loop in place on the back. Then I stitched the two pieces (back and front) together along one side.
Soaking the leather, I then formed it around the bolt blank and left it to dry.
Once dried, I then stitched the other side and the bottom.
When completed I sanded the edges, both to get them even and to define a better radius at the bottom of the bolt holder. Then it was out with the brass tube to try to polish up the edges. I haven't figured out yet how to give the leather a better finish - for example the sort of wax finish you see on "nice" saddlework - but as this is just a rough design I wasn't too bothered.
As you'll see from the pictures below, it turned out okay, at least as a "proof of concept". You'll also see that I'll not be giving up my day job just yet
The idea of the piece of leather at the top is that I will use either a popper or a Sam Brown stud as a closure to stop the bolt slipping out. In reality though, it would have been better to use a separate strap at the top, attaching it to the belt loop.
Now what I'm ideally looking for is someone from the site who does "proper" leatherwork and would be willing to make up a couple of these, possibly incorporating a couple of design improvements. I can provide the wooden blank as necessary.
Anyone up for it??