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This is an interesting and scarce Colt Dragoon with British Proofs that was assembled in Colt's London factory in 1853 and one of only 700 such examples. The story behind the London Dragoon is that Mr Dennet the manager or agent at Colt's Pall Mall office received an enquiry for .44 calibre revolvers and as they were not in production at that time in England, 700 partly made revolvers were quickly shipped in parts and finished and proofed in London. Only 500 were eventually sold and when Colt closed the factory ( after being discovered colluding with the Russians during the Crimean War!! ) the remaining 200 were sent back to the USA to be sold.
This is a 3rd model Dragoon and a decent example as can be seen from the photographs and has a good bore, distinct address and proof marks and is mechanically sound.
A scarce Dragoon!
This huge Adams patent self-cocking or “automatic” Dragoon revolver is in 38 bore (50 Calibre) and features an 8” barrel. These revolvers did not have a spur on the hammer and were fired double action.
The action on this revolver is exceptional and extremely fast, certainly as fast if not faster than a modern double action revolver!
The cased set features all of its accessories including the rare “tailed” mould. These early revolvers were made without a rammer and the bullets were simply pushed into the cylinder by hand and the hope was that the tail or spike behind the bullet would pierce the wad and hold it in place securely. This was not always the case and often the bullets would simply fall out of the cylinder leading to embarrassing or even fatal events. The revolver is in remarkably good condition with much original finish and is marked on the top strap with the makers name and address “Deane Adams & Deane, Makers to HRH Prince Albert. 30 King William Street, London Bridge”.
The revolver is mechanically sound and has good grips with a captive percussion cap container with a hinged lid. The accessories include a James Dixon powder flask, oil bottle, nipple key and turn screw, cleaning rod and oil bottle. There is a small bag of original cast bullets also contained within the box. There is no doubt that this is an original set as the good finish of the accessories matches the finish of the revolver. The English case has a vacant brass roundel in the lid and has its original key for the lock although the lock escutcheon is missing. It is very satisfying to find a complete cased set with the correct mould that has not been messed around with and without the later modification of a rammer addition.
For further and detailed information on this revolver read Taylerson’s seminal work on the subject “Adams revolvers”.
The Webley Bentley Wedge Frame percussion revolver is easily identified by its open frame with the barrel secured to the frame with a wedge key similar to Colt’s revolvers. Unlike Colt’s early revolvers however, Webley had already mastered, along with other British gunmakers such as Adams, the ability to interlink the trigger with the hammer and cylinder so you did not have to manually cock the hammer each time to rotate the cylinder. This double action or “automatic” method of firing gave the potential for extremely rapid fire and it would be some time before Colt caught up with this innovative and disruptive invention.
This particular revolver was made in England and exhibits English proof marks. It is a six shot 60 bore revolver with a good mechanical action. Everything works as it should. The grips are Walnut with decent chequering and the revolver has been profusely engraved with floriate engraving that includes the butt plate and trigger guard.
There is no retailers name on the revolver and the original finish has completely faded but nevertheless as the screws have not been messed with and there are no significant dents or dinks, it is a very pleasing revolver and would make a fine addition to any revolver collection.
There is a very similar revolver exhibited as plate 27 of Taylerson, Anderson and Frith’s excellent book “The Revolver 1815-1865”
The loading arm or rammer coupled with the flash shield on the top frame allow us to identify this revolver as being made around 1863.
This is a very good cased Colt Navy Revolver in 36 calibre manufactured in the London factory and stamped as such with British proofs and Colt’s London address. At this level the set would be difficult to better. The gun has a crisp action with a bright bore and much original finish. There is a very good cylinder scene with the silver plating extant on the trigger guard. The set is in the correct British case and contains the correct accessories including a Sykes stamped powder flask. The quality of the accessories is commensurate with the quality of the revolver and this is an exceptional set that has not been “improved” The finish of the revolver is original and rates at 90%. Were it not for some careless but typical marks and a light surface scratch around the wedge, this revolver would increase in value to the sort of money we see Texan millionaires paying in USA Auction Houses.
Colt believed that his London factory was the most important expansion of his business because of the potential sales throughout the British Empire and it is said that the examples made in the London factory were superior to those made in the USA factories. To research Colt London revolvers read Rosa’s seminal work “Colonel Colt of London”. Superior finish on Colt London revolvers included domed head screws, better cross hatching on the hammer and enhanced silver plating on the trigger guard.
It is little known or advertised that Colt’s British aspirations were destroyed when he was caught smuggling Colt Navy revolvers to Britain’s enemy - Russia at the height of the Crimean War and became persona non grata to the British Government. Colt closed his London factory never to manufacture in the United Kingdom again.
This is a very attractive cased London Navy and “ticks all the boxes” with great eye appeal and potential investment value.
This is an extraordinary , rare and exquisite cased percussion revolver manufactured by Joseph Fagard of St Remy Liege between 1857 and 1870.
The revolver features several superb features compared to the contemporary competitors of the time, notably Colt. Colt’s revolver is similarly an open frame revolver but to separate the barrel from the frame and cylinder a turn screw is required and something to knock out the wedge holding the two parts together. The whole process takes minutes, the frame was often damaged as a result, and the wedge and screw lost. Fargard’s ingenious method is a lever that operates a cam that solidly locks the barrel to the frame. A simple twist and the barrel and frame is separated in a second for easy cleaning or to allow a second charged barrel to be changed.
Other features include a spline spring on the arbor pin that holds the cylinder by friction, so it doesn’t fall out when the revolver is disassembled. The hammer features a positive safety pin, so the hammer does not need to be carried on a safety stop between cylinders.
Considering that Fagard patented this revolver in 1857 at the height of Colt’s popularity with Navy and Army single action revolvers , this revolver is double action and can be fired in both single and double action. The revolver has an integral rammer features a side hammer not unlike Kerr or Alan and Wheelock models introduced sometime later.
The revolver is nominally 54 bore ( .44) and is contained in its French style fitted case with a range of accessories. There is good rifling extant in the bore and the mechanics are solid and perfectly timed.
The revolver has excellent hardwood chequered grips that exhibit no wear and the frame and butt plate has profuse foliate engraving. The revolver is complimented with a German Silver foresight and rear sight and the makers name is clearly stamped on the top of the forcing cone.
The revolver may have been refinished in antiquity and I have an open view on this as the condition completely marches the accessories which include a powder flask, turned wooden cap box, mould and cleaning rod.
This is a very handsome looking gun of some rarity and I doubt I will see another.
An excellent revolver for the advanced collector looking for something different of quality.
This is an outstanding cased single-action, Kerr’s Patent single action percussion revolver made by the London Armoury Company of London. This company exported these sturdy, five-shot revolvers to the Confederacy in large numbers during the Civil War. Considered a secondary issue sidearm in the South, the cap and ball percussion revolver was also privately purchased by many Confederate officers for personal use. This revolver features the most popular 54 bore size (.44 calibre) with a five-shot cylinder matched to a 5½” octagonal barrel. Sidearm measures 11” long, weighs 30 oz. and has a one-piece English walnut chequered grip. The Butt strap is secured by two screws and has a lanyard swivel ring attached. An external side spring located on the left side of the frame behind the recoil shield allows for the cylinder to be removed. With the side spring held back, the matching long cylinder pin is removed, and the cylinder drops down and out. Loading lever is thick and flat with a rounded, knurled grip that secures to the bottom of the barrel.
These revolvers were designed with a unique side action lock that could be detached from the revolver to allow easy working on the lock and internal mechanism. I have seen many Kerr’s with broken mainsprings over the years, so this was probably not a bad idea. It is said that a blacksmith could repair a Kerr and blacksmiths are easier to find than gunsmiths.
Kerr’s were first produced in 1859 by the London Armoury Company, founded on February 9, 1856 as a Joint Stock Company whose primary investors included well known makers Robert Adams, Frederick Edward, Blackett Beaumont, William Harding and James Kerr, with Adams becoming the Managing Director due in large part to holding the largest number of shares of stock. Adams had transferred his revolver patent rights and machinery from a previous business as gun maker in the firm “Deane, Adams and Deane.” Kerr was Adams’ cousin and had worked with Adams previously at Deane, Adams and Deane. Located at 54 King William Street, the London Armoury Company first began production of the Beaumont Adams revolvers, but that enterprise was short-lived due to a conflict between the partners on the focus of manufacture of Enfield pattern 1853 muskets for the British government, as well as for private arms sellers. This decision led to Adams selling his interest in the company and stepping down as Managing Director in 1859. The company directors replaced Adams with Frederick William Bond as the manager and James Kerr as the factory superintendent. Kerr had recently been awarded two patents for an improved version of the Adams patent revolver (Numbers 2896 and 242) (Figure 10). The first Kerr Patent revolver was produced approximately March of 1859 and was tested on April 25, 1859 at the Royal Arms Factory at Enfield.
Details include “L.A.C.” and “a crown over a ‘V’” and “crown over ‘GP’” proof marks and the Lower right side of frame exhibits the engraved “KERR’S PATENT No. 8082” and the same number appears engraved on the cylinder with proof marks. On lower left frame to rear is stamped “LONDON ARMORY”. London Armory company is engraved on the lock This number (8082) is sometimes confused and considered the patent number but it is actually the serial number and is different on every revolver. This serial number is within the range that was exported to the United States in the American Civil War.
The five-shot, unrebated cylinder has all five original nipples that protrude from the back of the cylinder as well as five proof marks clearly stamped on the surface at the rear between the chambers. All frame screws original and not damaged. Mechanics are crisp and tight.
The revolver is presented in its original oak case with a brass roundel ( vacant) on the lid and loading instructions still extant inside the lid. The accessories are all present and correct and include a belted mould for the bullets, a Sykes patent powder flask, tin of Joyce caps and cleaning rod. There is a cotton pouch of original bullets that are contemporary to the revolver and the rare Kerr nipple key. There is a huge amount of original finish extant and this is the best Kerr I have seen for many years.
This is an interesting item! A Stevens New Model Pocket Pistol or Bicycle Rifle in obsolete 32 rimfire calibre.
The "rifle" has a detachable butt which has matching serial numbers to the rifle and is in overall good order considering it was manufactured circa 1888.
Overall the rifle has much original finish and is pleasing. The rear sight is missing its ladder which often was lost.
The rifle is accompanied with a copy of Kenneth Copes excellent book on Stevens Rifles which in my experience is possibly a rarer item than the rifle!
This is an excellent Marlin Model 1892 sporting rifle with the scarce half octagonal half round barrel. The model 1892 was the solid frame cousin to the Marlin Model 1897 which went on to become the Model 39 which is still being manufactured today.
This rifle is in obsolete 32/40 calibre with a bright bore and tight mechanics. Good woodwork and a pleasing patina and much original finish. One small patch of light pitting externally on the barrel where it was probably leaning against a dado rail but you need to look for it. The rifle is fitted with a tang sight and covered foresight adjustable for windage.
One of the most attractive Marlins I’ve had for a while.
This is an interesting revolver and scarce as most were converted from percussion to metallic cartridge by 1870
In 1865, as the American Civil War was coming to an end, the firm of E. Remington & Sons began to look at the reality of an immediate future without large US military manufacturing contracts as their primary market. This meant that for the foreseeable future civilian sales would likely be the bulk of Remington’s business, unless they could secure peacetime contracts with the US government or military contracts with foreign governments. One of the primary indications of the firm’s change in business strategy was the introduction of the Remington New Model Pocket Revolver. This diminutive handgun was clearly intended for sale to the general public and was not a military pattern firearm.
The new pocket model was intended to compete with the venerable Colt Model 1849 “Pocket” revolver and was essentially a scaled-down pocket version of the large frame Remington percussion revolvers that had been sold to the US military by the thousands during the Civil War. The gun was a five-shot, single action, .31 calibre percussion revolver. The octagonal barrel was available in four standard factory lengths from 3” to 4.5” in half-inch increments.
This revolver is mechanically sound, good grips and faded to an even grey patina but with distinct manufacturing stampings.
A good example.
In 1878, the 23-year-old Browning designed a falling-block single-shot rifle, for which he was granted a patent the following year. Browning and his brother commenced making the rifles by hand in their second-floor workshop in Ogden, Utah, with limited success.
In 1883, Thomas G. Bennett, Vice-President and General Manager of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company, traveled to Ogden and negotiated the purchase of the single-shot design, as well as the prototype of what would become the Model 1886 lever-action – the beginning of the fruitful 20-year Winchester–Browning collaboration. Winchester's engineers made some improvements to Browning's design, including angling the block at six degrees to create a positive breech seal, and released the rifle as the Model 1885. Two popular models were made, the so-called Low Wall which showed an exposed hammer, firing less powerful cartridges, and the so-called High Wall for stronger cartridges whose steel frame covered most of the firing hammer when viewed from the side; but both were officially marketed by Winchester as the Single Shot Rifle.
It was produced principally to satisfy the demands of the growing sport of long-range "Match Shooting", which opened at Creedmoor, New York, on June 21, 1872. Target/Match shooting was extremely popular in the US from about 1871 until about 1917, enjoying a status similar to golf today,
An excellent manufacture and an investment quality iconic firearm requiring no license to own. An international antique and unlike many "investment grade" firearms offered in the UK this one hasn't been messed with.
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