Seeking Information on "Wilson Custom Rifles"

HuntingGold

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Ladies and Gents,

I am looking at possibly purchasing this custom made rifle but cannot seem to find any information on the maker.

At the moment this is what I know:

The owner/seller bought the rifle at an estate sale ten or more years ago.
When he bought the rifle he was told it was built by Les Bauska.
The rifle is built on a BBK-02 action.
However, we find engraved on the rear sight "Wilson Custom Rifles."
Rifle is chambered in .375 H and H Magnum.
The rifle was taken two Africa at least twice by the current owner and functioned flawlessly and reportedly very accurate.

Has anyone heard of Wilson Custom Rifles? If so, is there a contact for them?

The owner/seller has agreed to allow me to post this inquiry as he himself does not know the full history of the firearm.

I will post two more pics from my phone. Thanks in advance for any help.
Randy
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HuntingGold

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Professor Mawla

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The author , Jack Lott did mention a “ Wilson Custom Rifles “ in one of his 1980s era writings . Let me check my study and see if I can find the magazine .
 

HuntingGold

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The author , Jack Lott did mention a “ Wilson Custom Rifles “ in one of his 1980s era writings . Let me check my study and see if I can find the magazine .

I would appreciate your efforts. Thank you.
RH
 

Ray B

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The engraver is Rudy Marek. I haven't seen anything by him lately but as of about 10 years ago he lived in Southern Oregon. He did a lot of work on Colts so I suspect that rifle is first rate as he wouldn't engrave anything less.
 

Brent in Az

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Interesting. When I see the name "Wilson", I think of Wilson Combat. They predominantly make higher end pistols and sporting rifles. I don't know if they ever dabbled in custom hunting rifles?
 

mdwest

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Interesting. When I see the name "Wilson", I think of Wilson Combat. They predominantly make higher end pistols and sporting rifles. I don't know if they ever dabbled in custom hunting rifles?

I’ve never heard of them doing a bolt gun... but Bill Wilson is an avid hunter... my understanding is he is largely retired from Wilson Combat these days and pretty much just travels and hunts these days...

And everything Wilson Combat does is first rate.. so a rifle like this from their shop wouldn’t surprise me...
 

Red Leg

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That is a magnificent rifle. I doubt if it had anything to do with Wilson combat.

I always try to be careful when responding to photos, but this one clearly was put together by someone who knew how to build a rifle. There is/was a barrel maker by the name of Carl Wilson which might explain the location of the name on this one. In any case, wood to metal looks perfect, commercial action, and the checkering seemingly without a flaw.

If it is a BBK action, then the rifle almost certainly was built by Les Bauska.

Only things that I could quickly find were these listings. The second looks virtually identical to your rifle.


 

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HuntingGold

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The second is the rifle I am looking at.
Sitting on the fence.

I appreciate all the insight.
RH
 

HuntingGold

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I just learned the engraver passed away in 1999. I'm seeing some rather fun stories about Mr. Marek and his passion for guns.
 

WebleyGreene455

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The second is the rifle I am looking at.
Sitting on the fence.

I appreciate all the insight.
RH
If you mean the second link in Red Leg's post, NECG lists it on their website and apparently are in possession of it. Have you contacted them at all? They might know something we don't since rifles like that are their business.
 

HuntingGold

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Prior to calling them, I wanted to become as informed as I possibly could. I've spent quite a bit of time on internet searches and other avenues of investigation. My results have been limited at best. In posting here hoping someone just happens to know all about this maker.
RH
 

HuntingGold

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Just another example of how time flies and 21 years seems like ten. And the older i get the faster it goes.

I have been told time is like toilet paper; when you are young the roll is large and seems like it will last forever. In the later years, the roll is small and spins away way too fast.
 

Chukar

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If it's a shooter then buy that piece!

Beautiful rifle and I hope that it serves you well in Africa and maybe in Orygun too!
 

HuntingGold

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Ladies and Gents,
After very careful consideration, I have decided to put money down on my own custom build. As a courtesy to the seller, who took much time in answering my questions, I wanted to post that this rifle is still available and can be found on Guns International.

I look forward to posting pics of my rifle in about 18 months... Which is the stated wait time.

Randy
 

HuntingGold

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An update on this rifle, I now own it.

Funny, four months ago I didnt need or want a 375 H&H, thinking I would just rent or borrow a rifle in Africa to save the grief of traveling with a gun, etc. In November, one of our members advertised a beauty of a rifle that gave me reason to think that maybe, just maybe I should have my own 375. While I himmed and hawed about it, @PARA45 bought that gun. I hoped that would dash my new desire but it did not. I soon found myself looking at guns on this site as well as Gun Broker, Guns International, and Guns America. At one point early in this process I found a Dakota 76 that was just gorgeous and that really lit my fire. It was early December and I didnt want to bring an expensive rifle into the house for myself while buying my wife a present for the monetary limit we put on ourselves. I had hoped no one would buy that gun but at the last second, someone did and boy did they get away with a steal. I continued to look for another Dakota like it but never saw another that matched the beauty that one was. My search went down many paths and one of those was this particular rifle. I struggled with a few questions about the gun, such as who really made it and was it worth the asking price. I sent the seller a question or two and he was always gracious in his answers. As a "last" resort for more information, I posted this thread hoping someone could fill in the gaps. As it was, what you see above is what I got. After much thought, I moved on. While catching up with my son in law, I began telling him about this gun. As I told the story, I found myself selling myself on this gun. The internal struggles began again and by the end of the night I had fired off another message to the seller and found out it was still available. I few more emails, texts, and we arranged the sale through our respective FFLs.

Being naturally a frugal person, I chose the slow boat for shipping and today it arrived. I expected the background check to take several days as it is well known the system in Oregon is back logged about 6000 deep. I guess I had some frequent flyer miles built up because before the paperwork was completed I was told I was approved.

I raced home and quickly dug out the reloading gear. I sized and primed up a handful of cases with the lightest loads I could find. I struggled with the new dies a bit but finally had it done. My wife jumped in the pickup along with my daughter and our golden retriever and off we went. No bench shooting, just plinking with a small handful of ammo. It was fun and the gun went off when it should. The super light loads were a pleasure to shoot with a recoil seemingly lighter than a .243. I plan to continue to shoot the light loads for awhile to develop a full familiarity with the gun before moving up the powder charges. Here's to hoping travel to South Africa or Argentina gets ironed out soon so I can take my new friend for a walk.
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Red Leg

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I am so glad you bought that rifle. It was clear in your posts it had struck a nerve. Lovely thing.
 

HuntingGold

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Thanks @Red Leg

Should anyone now or in the future have any information on Wilson Custom Rifles, Les Bauska, or Rudy Marek, I'd love to hear it. I'd like to have the information compiled to go with the gun when it is finally passed to one of my grandkids. I currently have 9 and have hopes for a couple more. Here's to hoping at least a couple will enjoy hunting as much as we do.
RH
 

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