WLM | business
f you saw a piece of axel that had broken off a Model A Ford, would it
occur to you that it had the makings of a gun? Probably to most of us it
would not, but if you were 11 year old Dick Casull it might.
From the time Dick was a little boy he had an inquisitive and creative mind.
He worked in his dad’s Salt Lake City automotive shop after school, where
his knowledge of the lathe and other essential tools enabled him to fashion
the broken pieces of axel he discovered into a pistol barrel. Figuring he’d
better keep it a secret, he worked on it while his dad was on coffee breaks
and kept it hidden under a pile of rags in the shop at other times.
To load the gun, he first put in the black powder (which anyone could
buy back then), then added toilet paper for wadding, some bb’s and more
wadding. It was then ignited by a cap from a child’s cap gun. When we
interviewed him, Dick showed how that was done and shot it for us. We
were warned that it was very loud and that we should cover our ears – we
did and it was!
“There was no minimum age for work at that time,” Dick explains. “When
I was twelve I got a job after school for two hours with Easton Sporting
Goods, cleaning the grease off World War II bayonets. I got in good with
the gun smith. He showed me how to polish a gun and keep the edges
straight. I started to have a good respect for guns.”