Show Us Your Buckmark winners announced.

Backlit LED Buckmark by Andrew Springer

Buckmark Mailbox by Keith Easter

Buckmark Metal Log by Trevor and Chad Wright

Buckmark Gun Rack by Jean-Marie Benoit

Buckmark Baby Door Hanger by Courtney McQueen

Buckmark Sporting Clays Cart by Ben Mallory

Buckmark Family Legacy by Bob Wenner

Buckmark Key Rack by Phillip Bogle

Buckmark Dinosaur by Russ Walker

Announcing the winners. The 2015 winners and their stories are found below. And the stories are even better than the entries. Take some time to enjoy how each entry came to be -- and maybe you will get some ideas for your own Show Us Your Buckmark entry. You could win great prizes from Browning including rifles, shotguns and even outdoor gear. If you had trouble entering your idea here on our site, earlier this year, the new Show Us Your Buckmark contest page is now up and working -- ready to accept your entry. The winners below were selected from over a thousand entries during the 2015 calendar year.

Winners are selected by a special Show Us Your Buckmark committee which gives particular attention to creativity, uniqueness, the number of votes and the overall rating for each entry. Some are spectacular engineering feats, some show practical usefulness and while others are winners for sentimental value. Every year we are amazed at what you, the fans of Browning, can create. All of us at Browning love the Browning legacy and the Buckmark logo that symbolizes it. Thank you for being part of the Browning family. 

2015 Grand Prize Winners

Submit your entries now for the 2016 contest period, ending December 31st, 2016.

Buckmark Dinosaur by Russ Walker

A cattle rancher from Vernon, Utah created this life-size dinosaur with a Buckmark head out of scrap 3/8” steel plate. Russ Walker, 41 and his family spent several years thinking about and building this one-of-a-kind metal monster that now sits at the end of the drive near the highway that runs by the ranch. The creation has even become something of a local landmark as people driving by regularly pull over to take a picture of this unique assembly dedicated to the Browning Buckmark.

“A few years ago my kids wanted me to build them a steel dinosaur, like one of those a 3-D wood models,” said Walker. “I had a CNC plasma cutter, and my wife did the computer file. After we finished the cattle roundup last fall, I had some free time and I finished it up. It took about a week or two once we really got into it. My two boys helped me with the assembly and final welding.”

“It’s 7 feet high and about 10 feet long, and I think it weighs around 800 pounds,” Walker continued. “We built it on a metal pallet so we can move it around with a tractor or a forklift. The hardest part was placing those big 10-foot by 4-foot steel sheets on the plasma cutting table. I had to move the table out of the shop into the driveway and use the tractor to set them on the table.”

Walker doesn’t know what his next SUYB entry will be. “Maybe I’ll enter again,” Walker said. “My son has a Buckmark woodworking project in mind.”

Walker selected a Browning BLR White Gold Medallion in 243 Winchester as his prize. He says he hopes to have his youngest son take his first deer with it.

Buckmark Mailbox by Keith Easter

For Keith Easter, 50, the president of a medical device manufacturing shop in Kenosha, Wisconsin it was his love of the Buckmark that inspired his winning entry. 

“Basically it came down to my love of the Buckmark, and the fact that I needed a new mailbox,” Easter laughed. “OK, I went overboard. My wife wouldn’t let me get a Buckmark tattoo, so I went with the mailbox.”

From start to finish, the project took nearly a month and is about 40 inches tall. Easter’s materials list included a 1-inch thick aluminum plate and a 2-inch diameter post in the ground. The Buckmark was water-jet cut from the hefty alloy plate, then welded, polished and powder-coated a deep brown. Easter said the color match with the brown mailbox from his local Lowe’s home center was a lucky coincidence.

“The hardest part was finding the right Buckmark logo,” continued Easter. “That and checking the U.S. postal regulations on how high it needed to be and how far from the curb to install it.”

“Oh, everyone loves it,” recounts Easter. “That’s something you don’t see every day. Most of my neighbors recognize the Buckmark, so you know right away who the hunters are.”

Easter selected a Browning Maxus Ultimate for his prize. When asked about his next SUYB entry, he thought for a moment. “I have Buckmarks on the railing of my cabin up north, and I’m doing some nice Buckmark end tables.”

Backlit LED Buckmark by Andrew Springer

Andrew Springer’s winning SUYB entry harkens back to the days when famous exhibition shooters like Ad and Plinky Topperwein would use a .22 rimfire rifle to draw pictures of Indians and Uncle Sam on a thin metal plate. When he’s not working on his sister’s ranch, Springer, 49, is a swimming pool salesman from Milano, Texas. He used a host of salvaged and recycled materials for his novel project. 

“My grandpa was a tinkerer and he never threw anything away,” Springer recalled. “He had salvaged some old fluorescent lights from a garage about 30 years ago. My uncle picked up the old wood for the frame from a barn.”

According to Springer, the hardest part of the project was accurately enlarging the Buckmark. “We got it onto a phone, then put that up on a big TV screen and traced a template. We used pennies to accurately space the shot holes. I drilled the inside of the Buckmark so it would be perfect.”

The metal sheet is about four feet tall and three feet wide with a wonderful brown surface finish that is accented by the aged gray barn wood enclosure. After shooting the Buckmark outline, Springer used a mix of old coffee grounds, vinegar, red wine, salt and other materials to remove the faded white paint, and then left it out in the Central Texas weather for a month or more to promote the rusty patina. He finally added modern LED backlighting in his wife’s favorite color, bright neon pink to make the Buckmark really pop off the metal background. 

Springer is an avid Browning owner, with three of the brand’s famous shotguns already in his gun rack. For dove hunting this season he selected a new Browning A5 Hunter with a 28-inch barrel and 3-inch chamber as his prize.

“We have a bunch of young hunters coming up and so we really needed another shotgun in the group,” Springer concluded. “I’m going to pass my 20 gauge BPS down to one of them and use the new A5 myself.”

When asked about his next SUYB project, Springer just laughed. “I’ve been taking to my sister, who designs furniture. She’s just itching to go herself.”

(PS: We like to think that the old exhibition shooters like Ad and Plinky would be very pleased that there are folks still making wonderful art with a rimfire rifle, like Andrew Springer down in the Lone Star State.)

 

Buckmark Metal Log by Trevor and Chad Wright

Innovation and pride in craftsmanship are second nature to Nanaimo, British Columbia building contractor Chad Wright, 41, and his son Trevor, 16, as his well-detailed Buckmark metal log project attests.

“It was a starter project everyone had to do in my metal shop class,” said the younger Wright, a student at Dover Bay Secondary School. “My grandpa is a hunter and has lots of Browning stuff. It took me close to a month to finish, working on it once a day for an hour, five days a week.”

The log measures about six inches long, five inches high including the stand and about three inches in diameter. According to Trevor the hardest part was making the Buckmark logo on the end. “Lots of people say they like it,” recounts Trevor with no small amount of pride. 

“A lot of my buddies want one, too,” proudly interjects Trevor’s father Chad. “I might have to buy a welder so Trevor can make them here in the garage.” After checking out the latest Browning catalog, Chad selected the X-Bolt Long Range Hunter as his prize. Wright noted he favors the 300 Winchester Magnum, which is always a good choice for the big bears and massive moose found in coastal British Columbia.

When asked about his next SUYB project, Trevor paused for a moment to reflect on the question. “I don’ know. I have to think about that.” Since another of his recent metal shop projects was a go-cart capable of going more that 120 KPH (or nearly 75 MPH), something on wheels is a distinct possibility.

Runners-Up

Buckmark Baby Door Hanger by Courtney McQueen

When not creating custom door decorations, Courtney McQueen, 29, of Madison, Alabama works as a surgical technician in a local hospital. Her innovative entry of a Buckmark door hanger also put a new Browning BL-22 rimfire rifle in her gun rack.

“I had a girl I work with at the hospital who was pregnant,” McQueen recalled. “She was doing her baby’s room in a rustic theme, and now it hangs on the bedroom door. Both mom and dad are very pleased.”

The entire door hanger project took about a day to complete, and, according to McQueen the hardest part was cutting and painting the wood and getting everything properly aligned. The project was been well received and she has made several more for friends. “The parents like it, especially if the dad is a hunter.”

When asked what she had in mind for her next SUYB entry, McQueen had not yet decided. “I’m not sure right now,” she responded. “But since I’ve gotten this far I’m thinking of some more ideas.” She picked up a new Browning BL-22 Grade II rimfire rifle for her efforts.

Buckmark Gun Rack by Jean-Marie Benoit

For retired ambulance driver, Jean-Marie Benoit, 67, of Tracadie, New Brunswick, Canada, space is at a premium in his small hunting cabin. That’s why his Buckmark gun rack is designed to fit into the corner. As a perfect accent for the Canadian wilds, the Buckmarks are made out of highly-figured birds-eye maple, 

“Well, my son gave me the idea,” Benoit recalls. “In my hunting cabin there is not much space, so I did it to fit into a corner, and I made it fancy. All together it took about a week to finish.”

“The hardest part was making it fit the corner, and making it fit guns with scopes on them,” Benoit continues. “Oh, yeah, everyone who comes in and sees it wants one for their own cabin.”

When asked what he has in mind for his next SUYB project, Benoit just laughed. “I’ll have to go ask my son,” he said. Benoit gets a brand-new Browning SA-22 Grade V1 to put in his winning rack.

 

Honorable Mentions

Buckmark Sporting Clays Cart by Ben Mallory

A metal roofer and carpenter during the week, Ben Mallory, 51, of Castleton, Virginia, hits the sporting clays ranges with his Browning Citori 625 every weekend he can get away. Since moving from shooting station to shooting station on the larger sporting clays layouts can be a trudge, Mallory saves time and energy by making the trip in is customized Buckmark sporting clays cart.

As a roofer, Mallory had the idea to cut out a Buckmark from a thin steel pan he had left over from a recent project. Using the same tin snips he uses on the job every day, he spent about three hours carefully hand-cutting the design into the metal. “The hardest part was getting the paint to stick well,” recounted Mallory. “I think I used some enamel Krylon.”

“Some people call it the ‘Browning Cart’ out on the sporting clays range,” continued Mallory. “They say it looks good.” An avid sporting clays shooter, Mallory tried a number of different guns, including Remington and Beretta, before he settled on the Browning Citori 625 Sporting. “As soon as I put the 625 in my hands, I fell in love with it,” he explains. Apparently the Browning Citori 625 Sporting is a good fit for Mallory, as his average scores are constantly improving.

And what’s the next SUYB entry from Mallory? “I’m also a carpenter by trade,” he explained. “I might do something in wood.” 

 

Buckmark Family Legacy by Bob Wenner

The fall of an old oak tree in Davie Koslop’s backyard gave rise to this unique SUYB entry. Koslop and his brother in law, Bob Wenner, 54, a law enforcement officer from Nescopeck, Pennsylvania, began talking last year about finding novel way to mount and display the antlers from their trophy deer.

“We saw the (SUYB) contest on the internet,” Wenner recounted. “It took (Koslop) the better part of two months.”

After getting out his chainsaw, much of Koslops’ time was spent cutting the 2-inch thick planks from the oak tree, gluing them together to get a wide enough board to put the Buckmark template down on and then doing the final cutting and finishing.

The end-result was a half-dozen antlerless oak Buckmarks for Koslop to present to his father-in-law, brothers-in-law and three nephews for Christmas. In turn, the Buckmarks will be mounted on the wall facing out, and will display the trophy horns collected by this hunting family for years to come. In turn, the each member of the family will have a Browning legacy they can pass along to the next generation.

Wenner, having entered the project in the SUYB contest will receive a collectible Browning knife, which he says he’ll soon be passing along to his brother-in-law. That’s the perfect gift for field dressing a trophy buck come next hunting season.

 

Buckmark Key Rack by Phillip Bogle

For Phillip Bogle, a 65-year-old US Army veteran from the Vietnam era living in Nehalem, Oregon, the individual freedoms that we Americans enjoy, like the right to travel freely and the right to keep and bear arms, were the symbolic inspiration for his Buckmark Key Rack. Having served in Okinawa, Japan, Bogle had a chance to visit local museums and see firsthand the effects of arms control on a civil population, and the resulting abuses by the samurai and the shotgun elites so long ago. 

“I read the poem (The Road Not Taken written in 1920 by Robert Frost) on the Browning website, and it just clicked,” recalled Bogle.“ My son, Aaron is a graphic designer and prototype maker and we design patterns for laser-cutting machines. It took maybe a half-hour to do the art, and a couple days to finish the assembly.”

While he is physically disabled, Bogle remains a deeply thoughtful, articulate and patriotic individual. He noted that one of the hardest parts of the project was to try and communicate what he was feeling inside. “Our founding fathers handed us the keys to the future,” said Bogle. “When you go out the door every day, do something that makes a difference. That’s what makes American great. It’s a celebration of what America is…”

Like the founding principles that America great, Bogle respects and admires the values that drive today’s Browning. “Browning quality…that’s what makes the company special,” he observed. “Going after quality. Quality that can never be replaced. It stays around and stays around.”

When asked about his next SUYB entry, Bogle paused for a moment of reflection. “I have a couple other ideas floating around. I’m fascinated by the process. Maybe it will be a game board…like cribbage. If this was unique, wait until you see my next idea!”

Bogle will soon get a chance to do some extra handiwork on his next project with the high-end Browning knife that comes as the prize for his entry.

Phillip Bogle's winning entry above was inspired by Browning's special advertising message which featured one of our favorite poems by Robert Frost: The Road Not Taken. Watch the video we produced for the poem or read the text here.