․⁂ The Austrian Legacy. Creating the Dream Rifle with Johann Fanzoj ⁂․
(10 min read)
One of the things we truly enjoy here at Rifletalks.com is the opportunity to speak to numerous stakeholders from the global shooting industry. These range from sport shooters looking for advice for their latest competition cartridge, to manufacturers seeking to improve their product, interested in understanding how their audience intends using it.
Hunters on the other hand may want to use that extra edge gained in competition to take it with them to the Rocky Mountains or the African plains. This cycle brings more overlap across different disciplines than one initially imagines. The more conversations we have, the more this line of thought holds its ground. The immensely varied landscapes in which hunters may want to take their equipment calls for various cartridges, optics and rifle setup but more than that, it is a very personal choice that one opts for and others live pursuing.
Being able to put these different people in contact is something we love doing and we are passionate about.
We were recently approached by a bespoke luxury gun and rifle manufacturer with sufficient experience to remember the day that President George Washington delivered the first State of the Union Address in January 1790, they were established in that same year! It was the same period of the French revolution ending in the late 1790s with the ascent of Napoleon Bonaparte. That hit me like the recoil of the 375XC the first time I squeezed the trigger on it. This is an old-world gun maker that is still around, thriving with ideas and harboring the drive to plan and see through any project you can dream of.
In a world of fast fashion trends, music and materials, it is astonishing when you learn of manufacturers that managed to stay abreast and relevant for the last eight generations or 233 years. Anyone at the helm of their industry and business understands the challenges of curating this legacy very well. This is the story and heritage of Johann Fanzoj, fine gun, and rifle makers since 1790. We are honored to be able to share with you a glimpse of this world.
Johann Fanzoj Kipplauf rifle
True to their DNA of rich heritage, traditional skills and old-world knowledge, the current directors Patrick and Daniela Fanzoj were after some of the highest performing cartridges out there to deploy that performance in one of their most sought-after hunting rifles the world has had the pleasure to enjoy. This is the Johann Fanzoj Kipplauf rifle.
One Shot each time you break open that rifle is what this Johann Fanzoj is all about.
The Kipplauf rifle is a single shot stalking rifle that embodies the challenge of harvesting game with a single precise shot. Now that precision and skill in making that one shot count is something at heart to us as well at rifletalks.com as well as our global readership.
Below: The delivery of that dream Fanzoj rifle in its most illustrious presentation. This is Art.
A few months back, while discussing the Ibex hunt in Kyrgyzstan with the 300RUM, I was discussing this very rifle design with another manufacturer who had told me that the Kipplauf design has some inherent limitations to what cartridges can be fired.
Patrick Fanzoj priming the details of a dream rifle to the penultimate detail.
Above: This is all about the details, going into every part to have it the way you want it designed.
Yet on the other side of that neighbouring country, two rifle makers, the Fanzoj siblings were thinking exactly that, how best to go about it to create a dream Kipplauf rifle chambered in an ultra high-performance cartridge. What are the challenges of such a build and how best to deliver that performance in a hunting weight rifle that would follow its owner loyally to far flung hunting locations and work each time with the same reliability you would expect from an AI Artic Warfare.
Above: The legacy in person. Daniela Fanzoj, a very hands on director seen above priming through the minute details of a well chartered and innovative rifle build. Rifle builds are serious business around here.
As the discussion revolved and new ideas chambered, important questions came to the forefront, what should it weigh in a hunting weight rifle, what sort of recoil would this generate, how heavy a barrel would it practically have, what twist is ideal for this hunting bullet and what precision requirements should this rifle deliver? One detail struck me, their rifles are capable in delivering match rifle accuracy. That’s a tall order to fill. A working version of this rifle would initially be built and tested before proceeding to build the dream rifle. This gives the customer the opportunity to get a feel of what his dream will perform like.
Meanwhile Patrick inquired if we could get bespoke dies for this rifle and who would be best suited in delivering these items to accompany such a bespoke rifle build? Some of you that have gone through building precision long range rifles may have experienced some of this thought process when detailing your rifle build. That is just the functional side of a Johann Fanzoj rifle. Then there is the creative and artistic side of it.
The beauty of these rifles, however artistic they may be, is that they are still very functional precision rifles. That is were they stand out from the very few that can build rifles of this prestige.
Above: Maybe no other 338 Lapua rifle has received as much attention and client input as this Fanzoj Kipplauf 338LM working model.
Don’t take our word for it, watch the video below to understand the needs of discerning hunters that commission these builds. Ammon Ammon is seen in this production mounting his Fanzoj Kipplauf 338 Lapua Magnum rifle in the field, taking position and making the shot of a life time during one of his outback adventures in Canada.
Johann Fanzoj kipplauf in action
Optical precision and art beautifully laced on this one of a kind Fanzoj Kipplauf rifle. Notice the heavier than usual muzzle brake and barrel on this 338Lapua Kipplauf rifle. The well balanced contours, bespoke stock dimensions, barrel length and weight combined make for a rifle that not only can be admired for its beauty, but respected for its practical field conditions performance, delivering a well-placed round hundreds of meters away with utter confidence.
☝️Interchangeable barrels allow for carrying one gun with multiple calibers. That means a rifle for every hunting need that follows the ethos of a single well-placed round.
The video below is set to start showing closeup of the kipplauf rifle on a tripod.
It is a bold move by these rifle manufacturers and its future patron to pursue traditional design and cutting-edge ballistic performance. It is a step few have the pleasure to embark on. It may not make sense to some but to others, it’s the dream worth pursuing and Johann Fanzoj will detail and record every step of this process. The client is then also presented with a book that charters the entire process from order to completion. That is truly a bespoke experience that spells luxury, a love for gun making, a passion for art and a client-focused approach.
338 Lapua Magnum Kipplauf
Johann Fanzoj 338 Lapua – a precision rifle like no other. Hundred of hours are spent sketching, detailing, and creating the customer’s bespoke designs. Every detail is built according to your request by master craftsmen. With many shooters out there stepping up their choice of cartridge for their training and with others having spent considerable time behind these high-performance cartridges, it comes at no surprise that some want to shoot these same cartridges in their hunting rifle of choice, especially if they do not want a classic cartridge like a 7×64, 300win mag or 375H&H.
When this action shuts close, the game is on.
A word with Daniela Fanzoj.
This is something that the current directors, have become known for, bringing remarkably new visions to this old craft and fascinate worldwide by blending classic values and high aesthetics with unprecedented sophistication. Daniela Fanzoj explained to me:
“Here at Fanzoj, you can think in three dimension using eyes, hands and mind to work in concert with highly specialized craftsmen that for the last 200 plus years have been applying themselves to make better firearms and works of art for the most demanding rifle owners.”
Above: The beauty of 200+ years of craftsmanship coupled with the reliability of the most trusted long range cartridge, the 338Lapua Mag.
Johann Fanzoj worked for last emperor of Austria and thereafter many high-end clients to produce some of the most extravagant works of art. They mastered old-world techniques and gave life to dream guns through ancient working methods. They seek customers that want to be a patron of tomorrow’s masterpieces as well as those rifle lovers that want to be actively involved in the process of creating them without limit imposed by practical applications or budget. That’s an honorable mission and a completely different tangent to what many are accustomed to in terms of buying experience but also in terms of ownership and heirloom, the latter being an important consideration for some of these clients.
In our chat, Daniela rightfully remarked one starting point:
“Hunting weapons inhabit a unique place in the world of rare collectibles.
Throughout human history, they have inspired awe and fascination,
serving not only as means of protection and sustenance but also as a canvas for art.”
That is certainly the case as can be attested in museums the world over.
The beauty and feel of hand made and finished stocks, perfectly textured and finished by expert craftsmen.
With that foreword we shall in the coming months present some of these unique projects that Johann Fanzoj have been commissioned, revealing how these rifles are built and detailing their field performance appreciating the dimensions of their creative minds, the beauty of space age materials as well as three centuries of experience in perfectioning gun and rifle making. Whatever your dream, Fanzoj can walk the journey with you to create the ultimate rifle or shotgun with the input of the best minds in the industry.
Noteworthy that all production is inhouse enabling Johann Fanzoj and the patron to be as creative and progressive as possible without limitations imposed by third party suppliers.
Total control over every production step is the only way to achieve this as Daniela and Patrick Fanzoj passionately explain. Yes, that will raise the cost of creating these masterpieces but will guarantee the best you can ever get. Cost has never been the main concern of some of the best works of Art we enjoy today, and neither is it for patrons who can dream wild and breath life into their imagination.
Stay tuned to enjoy some of the most unconventional rifle builds you will ever see. We will walk the journey with a patron who has submitted an order for a Fanzoj rifle and enjoy this unique journey together.
Speak to Daniela Fanzoj
The Fanzoj siblings would be delighted to discuss your project and breathe life into another bespoke creation. Some of you maybe asking, what will it cost to own one of these beauties? As a guide line, a basic bolt action rifle from this prestigious gun and rifle marker starts around €50k with the double rifle starting around double that price. You may Contact Johann Fanzoj here.