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Ocean Rhino "Wind Song" Special Edition Spearguns

popgun pete

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Jul 30, 2008
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Kevin has informed me that due to a purchase of seasoned Burmese teak salvaged from the "Wind Song" sailing vessel that he has been able to produce a limited series of guns using this beautiful timber. Previously forming the handrails that ran right around the vessel and then stored under cover in a timber yard for 15 years this wood has fully stabilized making it an ideal barrel material. In a sense it is a return to duty as this timber will once more serve in the marine environment and all the guns are serial numbered making them collector items in their own right.
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These Ocean Rhino guns all use the new "hyperlink" line system seen in the third photo which is attached here.
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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This is the "Wind Song" before she suffered an engine fire that spelled her end as a cruise vessel. One of three sister ships.

Due to the location and the economics of salvaging her she was eventually towed and sunk in over 9,000 feet of water, a rather sad end and a bit beyond recreational diving range, unless you have that fluidic breathing gear they used in "The Abyss" movie!
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Here is a photo of the muzzle equipped with a LED flashlight of 200 lumens (AA alkaline battery or 500 lumens using a rechargeable lithium ion battery). This photo also shows how the "hyperlink" system works which provides a quick changeover line system for swapping spears as you don't have to remove the line slide when doing transfers. Basically the front line (spear) tether and line slide are separate parts, a slider and a line collar that engages on the slider body.
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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A few more photos indicating how the "hyperlink" system works for using spare shafts stowed on your gun. The "hyperlink" shooting line change-over system was actually invented by Kevin, everything else is a copy if you have seen it elsewhere.
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Serial numbers are branded into the muzzles from underneath.
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Note that there were only so many feet of handrail on the "Wind Song", thus only a limited number of guns and that is it. Kevin sent me a document on how and where the timber was found and its history on how it got there, so I expect that he will soon post it here.
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Jul 30, 2008
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Posted by Spear One on US Spearboard, now copied to here. (NB. I had to split it up as too long for one post)

So, here is the Wind Song story. I would like to thank Frank from Hook & Spear Charters for helping me edit the story. The original version was over 6 pages and admittedly a little more wordy than it needed to be. However, Frank helped me trim it down to 3 pages plus the price sheet so its a little easier read now. Hope you enjoy the story!

The Wind Song Story
By Kevin Bruington


Introduction: Spearfishing Specialties is proud to introduce an extremely limited series of spearguns, the KB Signature Wind Song Speargun and Ocean Rhino Wind Song Speargun. These spearguns are manufactured using teak hand rails salvaged from the 440 ft Holland America cruise ship, the MSY Wind Song.

The Wind Song, a 4 masted “Windjammer” style motor sailing ship, was built in France in 1987 and cruised throughout French Polynesia and Tahiti. While on a cruise in December of 2002, a catastrophic fire broke out in the wheelhouse and engine room that caused extensive damage to the ship. Fortunately, all passengers and crew were safely evacuated. The fire was eventually controlled and extinguished by the French Navy. However, the severity of the damage crippled the ship beyond repair and the Wind Song was declared a total loss.

Salvage companies were sent in to remove anything of value, including undamaged equipment, furnishings, and luckily the teak decking and hand rails. Once the salvage was completed, the Wind Song was towed to sea on its final journey. On January 22nd, 2003 she was scuttled in 9,843 feet of water just off Tahiti, at roughly a latitude of 17.45 South and a longitude of 149.48 West.

The teak decking and hand rails were shipped to the US and arrived at a Florida lumber yard in 2003. The hand rails remained there, forgotten, until late October 2018. I became aware of the existence of the hand rails by a dive buddy of mine who lives in the area. When I arrived to inspect the teak hand rails, they were on a very tall outside storage rack protected only by a tin roof. The rails had been drying and essentially “curing” in the Florida heat and humidity for over 15 years.

This slow air dry process is the preferred method of curing wood. Builders tend to purchase wood and dry it rapidly in a kiln. While this method makes the wood dry faster, the wood is more susceptible to warping, bowing, and twisting. The wood from the Wind Song was allowed to “acclimate” for over 15 years, making it extremely stable. This length of drying time is virtually unheard of these days, making this wood quite rare.

Additionally, the Wind Song wood is “old growth” Burmese Teak. Burmese Teak is known for its beautiful grain and wide ranging color palate. The colors range from a light pecan to a dark walnut with shades of orange and green intermixed into the grain. Once these spearguns are sanded and sealed with Tung Oil, the wood grain has a lot of depth and the colors are stunning. This unique and highly figured wood ensures that each speargun is an individual work of art and that no two are alike.
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Researching the Origins of the Wood. After looking over this stunning wood, I made a deal to purchase all the hand rails and brought them back to the shop for trimming and prepping. At this time I did not know which ship the hand rails had come from, but judging from the age and quality of the wood, I knew it had a story to tell. I had asked the lumber yard employee if he had any idea what ship the hand rails had been removed from. He did not know and suggested I contact the lumber yard owner.

The lumber yard owner said he could not be 100% positive but he was pretty sure the hand rails had come from the Wind Song. While he was on an overseas trip purchasing teak for their lumber operations, he had gotten a call about a cruise ship that was being salvaged. He went to the ship and made a deal to purchase the teak decking and rails and shipped the teak to their lumber yard in Florida.

Based on this information, I was pretty certain that the hand rails I had purchased were likely from the Wind Song. However, I still needed additional verification before I felt comfortable claiming that these spearguns were made with Wind Song hand rails. I needed historical pictures of the Wind Song, showing the hand rails I had purchased.

So off to the internet I went, and thanks to Google, You Tube, and Wikipedia, I was able to get a lot of information about Wind Song very quickly. There were several really good photos and videos of the ship on the internet, including many photos of the fire, the evacuation, and close up pictures of the damage the ship suffered.

While I got some really good info on Wind Song from Wikipedia and You Tube, neither of those sites showed me the hand rail pictures I needed. Then it hit me, the Wind Song had two sister ships, the Wind Star and the Wind Spirit. Were they still sailing? If so, there may be pictures of those ships that might show the exact hand rails I had. After all, there were only three ships in this class ever built, I felt I could safely assume that the Wind Song was a duplicate of her sister ships. Back to the internet I went, to search for the Wind Star and Wind Spirit.

Sure enough, I found a link to book a cruise on Wind Star and Wind Spirit. Much to my amazement the sister ships were still commissioned and sailing. I decided to go to the cruise ship site www.windstarcruises.com and there, listed under current vessel is Wind Star and Wind Spirit. I clicked on Wind Star and there were over 50 photos of the interior of the ship. There were many photos that showed the teak hand rails which were the same shape and color of the ones I had in my shop. The rails surrounded the entire upper deck of the ship, the pool area, and the stairwells. They were a perfect match! This was the final piece of the puzzle, the evidence that I needed to be certain that these hand rails had indeed been salvaged from MSY Wind Song.
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Jul 30, 2008
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A New Speargun is Born. I have been building spearguns for close to 40 years and I have built many thousands of spearguns during that time. There is no doubt in my mind that these Wind Song series spearguns are the best spearguns I have ever built both materially and technologically. Each speargun barrel is hand milled using radial arm saws, table saws and routers. All Ocean Rhino Wind Song spearguns are built by me from start to finish. KB Signature and Ocean Rhino Wind Song spearguns have two new body shapes compared to our current line of Ocean Rhino spearguns.

This Wind Song Teak is close to 35 years old and is absolutely the most beautiful wood I have ever had the pleasure of working with. This teak is super stable and straight due to the unique drying and curing process it has gone through. It takes significant time and very meticulous measuring and cutting to remove just the right amount of wood so the grip and muzzle parts align and fit perfectly. Because I measure every piece out and plan all my cuts, the yield on this wood was virtually 100%. The only wood that got thrown away were the trimmed pieces I had to remove from the outer curved areas of the hand rails to get the wood down to the proper rough dimension to begin the milling process.

The Wind Song story is simply a great story. Everyone I have told about this wood and how I acquired it was just fascinated. Plus, the fact that these spearguns are built with reclaimed teak instead of removing existing trees makes them even more special.

Imagine the passengers who were on the Wind Song during a cruise. They are standing on the upper deck of the ship leaning on the hand rail with a drink in their hand. They are waving goodbye to the crowd during the “sail away” or maybe they are gazing out at the windswept ocean on a moonlit night. How could they ever, in their wildest imagination have known that the hand rails they were leaning on would someday return to the ocean as a speargun?

The history and the story associated with this Wind Song teak is quite unique and special. Therefore, I can only hope that these Wind Song Spearguns will someday find a special place in speargun history. I have a very limited supply of Wind Song Teak that yielded only 223 barrels. Because of that, I will only build 156 KB Signature Spearguns and 67 Ocean Rhino Wind Song Spearguns using Wind Song Teak.
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Jul 30, 2008
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Building custom wood spearguns requires a lot of hard work and dedication. However, for me it is a labor of love and very rewarding. When customers send me photos of the fish they have speared with one of my spearguns, it gives me great pride and satisfaction. The huge smile on their faces says it all!

The Wind Song Spearguns have been selling quickly and will likely sell out soon. If you are interested in purchasing a Wind Song Series Speargun, contact your local Ocean Rhino dealer or call or text Kevin @ 727-743-7686. You can also email us: [email protected].

Sorry, but these spearguns are not listed on our website at this time. www.oceanrhino.com

If you would like to learn more about about the cruise ship MSY Wind Song, there are several really good videos with color pictures of the ship on You Tube. Wikipedia also has some good information.


Models, Equipment, and Pricing:

KB Signature Spearguns are a limited edition run. The teak hand rails we acquired yielded enough wood to produce 156 KB Signature spearguns in 4 lengths. These spearguns will have serial numbers from 00 to 154.

All KB Signature Spearguns include:
  1. Hyperlink Lineshaft System
  2. Spare Shaft Holder
  3. Flat Wishbone 5/8” dia. Bands
  4. Kevin Bruington's signature branded on the barrel
  5. Serial number stamped into the barrel
  6. Barrel dimension is approx: 1.90” tall and 1.50” wide
  7. Tung Oil Finish

Model # MSRP
TX2KB-HL $699.00
TX3KB-HL $739.00
TX4KB-HL $779.00
TX5KB-HL $839.00


Ocean Rhino Wind Song Spearguns have a slightly smaller barrel height compared to the KB Signature barrel. The teak hand rails we acquired yielded enough wood to produce just 65 Ocean Rhino Wind Song Spearguns in 3 lengths. These spearguns will have serial numbers from 00 to 63.

All Ocean Rhino Wind Song Spearguns include:
  1. Hyperlink Lineshaft System
  2. Flat Wishbone 5/8” dia. Bands
  3. Ocean Rhino branded on the barrel
  4. Serial number and letters WS stamped into the barrel
  5. Barrel dimension is approx: 1.50” tall and 1.50” wide
  6. Tung Oil Finish

Model # MSRP
TX3WS-HL $599.00
TX4WS-HL $649.00
TX5WS-HL $699.00

__
Ocean Rhino Spearguns: Designed & Built By Commercial Spearfishermen

Manufactured By: Spearfishing Specialties (727)-548-7686

E-mail: [email protected] Web: OceanRhino.com
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Jul 30, 2008
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I own an Ocean Rhino RX with the black coated timber barrel, it being one of the early versions studded with bolts in the rear end which have now been reduced in number and make the gun a lot lighter than it used to be.
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The Ocean Rhino is a very handy gun with a quick line rigging and transport system and has one of the best safety mechanisms on the market, something that should be on all spearguns, provided that owners use them properly. One day regulators will step in and require spearguns to have a working safety as up until now we have had a pretty free hand and have largely been left to our own devices. For those who say safeties cost fish I can only say try telling that to the Judge at your trial! Let us hope it never comes to that, but I can assure you that such cases have already been through the courts and often the presence of a safety has been pivotal in someone not having all their possessions sold off to pay costs and damages.
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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I could not resist the temptation and thinking that they may sell out pretty quickly I ordered one and I suggest others do the same. Otherwise unless the two sister ships "Wind Star" and "Wind Spirit" similarly come to grief this chance will not come again.

Here are the stern handrails on the "Wind Star", the source of the barrels from the identical "Wind Song" salvage before she was towed to deepwater and scuttled. The deck planking looks pretty good, but was probably re-used in another vessel.
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Jul 30, 2008
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Wow, my "Wind Song" SIGNATURE series gun has just arrived and I eagerly unpacked it like a kid at Christmas about 20 minutes ago. This is an absolutely superb gun with a glowing timber finish and a stock of depth and heft, it puts in the shade any of my other timber guns for precision of fit and finish. The line rigging system with the hyperlink is the best invention since sliced bread as you press the shaft into the gun’s sear box with a click, push the safety lever down to “safe” and then pull the hyperlink off the stock’s black retaining hook and run it over the tip of the shaft. After that wind the line wraps over the line wrapping points and then haul back the bands. Interestingly the latter have flat sections in the curve of the stainless steel wishbones to drop in the shaft wishbone slots. There are a bunch of others extras and the gun is a totally complete spearfishing package which is very well engineered and assembled and Kevin has done a great job in integrating the hand rail timber as the wood gleams like new with a silky finish and wonderful grain character.

Once you lay your eyes on one of these guns you will want to own it, so I suggest that if you want one they are going to disappear pretty fast when enough people have seen them "in the flesh". I got so excited that when I started typing this I got up to quickly check something and caught my foot on a power adapter cable and heard the crash as the laptop and all that is plugged into it headed for the carpeted floor. No harm done and now I am back in business typing this up and am very pleased that the gun arrived here in perfect condition, protected by multi-layers of high tech silvery packing that held the gun in the shipping box as snug as a bug in a rug.
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Here are some photos of the "Wind Song" KB SIGNATURE Limited Edition gun alongside the Ocean Rhino RX that I purchased some years ago.
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Jul 30, 2008
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Note that in the flat side sections of the timber stock that some of the original exposed hand rail surface remains as it has the patina of micro-wear from countless hands and rings and watches that may have contacted the timber as people gazed out to sea leaning on the hand rail. That is a very nice touch and you can see it if you look closely at the last set of photos. Kevin told me that he was able to use nearly 100% of the timber as only material was cut off for the end sections and some curve rounding and tapers which means that much of the hand rail remains. I attach a photo sent to me of the handrail timber awaiting its recall to duty after being stacked and nearly forgotten for 15 years after it was salvaged from the "Wind Song" luxury cruise ship that evoked the days of sea travel under sail in a modern take on the windjammer.
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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At first glance I thought that the muzzle moldings were the same, but the "Wind Song" muzzle has a larger hole in the lower front of the muzzle than the corresponding hole on the earlier RX. The flashlight instructions say that this new version of the muzzle dates from 2015 and the mounting hole is for the new flashlight, or a bayonet for poking away things you don’t want coming too close. Because the flashlight projects out the front it is made quite robustly and not some skimpy bit of alloy turning that you see on some lightweight terrestrial flashlights. A twist turn bezel turns it on and off as is usual for this type of underwater flashlight. It occurs to me that a laser could go in here as well in a similar sized package. Or even a switchable light and laser. I recently saw some kids with plastic AR15 assault rifles and Barrett sniper rifles all tooled up with laser (red and green) sights and big scopes and holographic sights it looked like they were ready for World War III, all out of China of course. In the West people are often debating if kid’s should have toy guns, but there are no such doubts in China as the array of kid’s military 1:1 scale model weapons there would not be out of place in an edition of “Firepower” magazine.
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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The flashlight complete with battery weighs 3.5 ounces, which seems a lot until you remember it has a metal column on its tail end with an eye at the extreme rear for a transverse screw to pass through when you secure it into the hole in the muzzle chin. Thus secured it is easy to twist it on and off because the gun stops the flashlight body from rotating. You remove the flashlight between dives to get the salt out of the bore that it sits in as dried salt crystals hydrolyse and will burn through alloy and stainless steel if you leave it unattended for long enough.

 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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Note that the "Wind Song" gun uses the later version of the "Ocean Rhino" handle and has a revised trigger mechanism and a lot fewer bolts than its predecessor as can be seen by this photo of the earlier gun opened up.
53804

For a few years now the revised handle version has been on sale and these guns also have a different location for the sear lever pivot pin so that the spear loads into the sear box with a simple push and click. The earlier models do the same thing, but need a slight twist of the spear as you push to allow the vertical spear tail anti-roll notch to not bind on the sear lever backing projection which sits slightly low in the rear shaft notch. When the sear lever pivot pin was moved forwards it meant that without any change to the lever's shape that the backing projection stood higher in the sear box and fills the vertical spear tail notch to the top whereas before it got to only about half way up the slot. That is when the sear lever is in the discharged position with the sear tooth fully rolled forwards and down.
 
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Sep 23, 2015
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Great story, thanks for sharing. The design of the handle system, line release and safety reminds me a bit of the AB Billers. Couple questions.. what is the handle and muzzle material? Also, what is the function of the shaft slide ring? Does that engage the flopper?
 
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popgun pete

popgun pete

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The handle and muzzle are injection molded plastic of the reinforced type. You can read more about the guns here: http://www.oceanrhinospearguns.com/.

The shaft slide ring is used because these are lineshaft guns and in the hyperlink version the line slide is effectively in two parts, a sliding cone on the shaft and an attachment ring connected to the shooting line. This allows freeshafting or lineshafting by rapidly switching shafts as the shooting line can be swapped between spears using the hyperlink ring to hook onto another shaft. On my “Wind Song” gun there is a second shaft carrier on the right hand side of the gun and being a "Signature" series gun it has a deeper timber body to help carry the added weight of a second shaft being stowed on the gun. Now where I spear a freeshaft would soon become a lost shaft on a very weedy bottom, so I don’t routinely use a second shaft. However it could be handy to have a second shaft with a detonating tip in some circumstances to see off unwelcome visitors.

"Ocean Rhino" used to sell augmented and improved "Sea Hornet" guns, but when Sea Hornet Australia made a decision to make Tusa their distributor "Ocean Rhino" (Kevin Bruington) decided to create their own gun. Tusa knew zip about spearfishing and "Sea Hornet" has since tumbled into the Abyss due to bad management decisions. I own a number of "Sea Hornet" guns and two "Ocean Rhino" guns and they are great underwater weapons for general purpose spearfishing.
 

peterclark

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Toy guns are toys which imitate real guns, but are designed for children to play with. From hand-carved wooden replicas to factory-produced pop guns and cap guns, toy guns come in all sizes, prices and materials such as wood, metal, plastic or any combination thereof. Many newer toy guns are brightly colored and oddly shaped to prevent them from being mistaken for real firearms.