They are as beautiful as museum pieces when they leave the workshop, yet destined for practical use. Renowned for their precision, rifles made in Ferlach make the heart of every collector beat faster and are coveted by hunters all over the world.
Empress Maria Theresia appreciated the work of Ferlach's armorers. The art of gunsmithing has been practiced in Ferlach, Carinthia for more than 500 years and rifles from the Rosental are acclaimed all over Europe. They grace the rifle collections of noble houses and museums from St Petersburg to Cleveland, OH and can be recognized by their approval mark, which is engraved on the lock, stock and barrel. This quality control is practiced since 1631 and is the foundation of the town's enduring success.
Every hunting rifle manufactured in Ferlach is unique, tailor made to the specifications of the client: they select the caliber, lock mechanism or barrel combinations, determine the ornamental engraving for the metal plates on the stock and select the solid wood. Then the client is measured for barrel length. It is fascinating to witness the combination of many highly specialized crafts, which only survive through the art of gunsmithing: garneurs, engravers, stockers, basculeurs work hand in hand to produce individual pieces which the master gunsmiths fit together produce the perfect weapon. Once complete, the weapon is submitted to the Beschussamt (quality control office), to ensure the finest quality.
Eleven master gunsmiths manufacture around 200 rifles each year. The process takes considerable time, sometimes even years, if the engraving and decoration is especially intricate. The list of clients is proof enough that rifles from Ferlach are a royal hunting rifle of artistic merit.
A visit to a traditional gunsmith is a must for all rifle enthusiasts! Here are some useful contacts.