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View Full Version : Help with inherited flintlock


strungoutt
01-06-2011, 11:35 PM
Hello everyone,

I was hoping someone here could educate me as to what I have here. I don't know very much about these really old guns, but it is a really unique looking gun. It's much larger then the modern guns we have in our gunsafe, so we are considering trying to sell it. Any help is greatly appreciated because this gun has no visible markings to identify it.

http://img694.imageshack.us/i/83591727.jpg/

http://img80.imageshack.us/i/31858187.jpg/

http://img413.imageshack.us/i/49964407.jpg/

http://img411.imageshack.us/i/20460247.jpg/

http://img525.imageshack.us/i/51129897.jpg/

http://img408.imageshack.us/i/20766091.jpg/

Thanks,

Carl

AJAX22
01-06-2011, 11:37 PM
I would saw it off into a Howdah pistol ;)

muzzle loaders can be as short as you want.

they can be lots of fun.

Mac Attack
01-07-2011, 6:48 AM
What you have there is a old blackpowder caplock shotgun and not a flintlock. Since there is no markings it's difficult to identify the exact make. If you plan to shoot it I would have it checked out by someone who knows a thing about old shotguns.

Regarding selling it, I have seen some great worn out BP shotguns selling in the range of $100 - $600 depending on maker, age and condition. Your rifle looks to be in good condition. How rusted is the barrel? Otherwise, I think it would make a great over the mantle wall hanger.

CSACANNONEER
01-07-2011, 7:02 AM
What you have there is a old blackpowder caplock shotgun and not a flintlock. Since there is no markings it's difficult to identify the exact make. If you plan to shoot it I would have it checked out by someone who knows a thing about old shotguns.

Regarding selling it, I have seen some great worn out BP shotguns selling in the range of $100 - $600 depending on maker, age and condition. Your rifle looks to be in good condition. How rusted is the barrel? Otherwise, I think it would make a great over the mantle wall hanger.

All I can add to this is that, it is possible that this is a "modern" made gun which has had all marking removed to look more authentic. I sort of doubt it but, without someone who knows exactly what to look for, inspecting it, it is a possibility. Even if that is the case, $100-$600 would be a reasonable range.

Fjold
01-07-2011, 7:08 AM
It's a percussion double barrel shotgun. Just looking at the stock I don't think that it's a modern reproduction because it is set up for a right handed shooter with a lot of cast off in the stock. There's so much cast off that I think that it was custom built for a particular shooter. Most modern percussion front stuffers don't have that degree of stock work done.

PEZHEAD265
01-07-2011, 8:17 AM
It looks like a wall hanger to me.A modern made gun made to look like it is older then it is.With a lack of proof marks I would be leary of shooting it and if you look at the last pic of the barrels the rib in the center doesn't fit right it looks like it was made cheaply and unsafe to fire.

Barabas
01-07-2011, 9:25 AM
It's a percussion double barrel shotgun. Just looking at the stock I don't think that it's a modern reproduction because it is set up for a right handed shooter with a lot of cast off in the stock. There's so much cast off that I think that it was custom built for a particular shooter. Most modern percussion front stuffers don't have that degree of stock work done.

+1.

Can you get better pictures of the checkering on the stock? How about the buttplate? Any markings there?

strungoutt
01-07-2011, 3:04 PM
Thanks so much for the replies. I actually asked my dad and got the specifics of the gun today. My father bought this gun in 1960 for about $20, so it is not a new replica. It is not an inherited gun as I previously thought. It is definetly an old piece. I went out and got some more pictures of the piece. There were actually quite a few markings when we broke the gun down. Also when breaking the gun down, it is fairly evident this peice is very old. The peice that held the bore to the stock is obviously handbuilt.


Sorry for just posting links to the pictures. For some reason I cant get them to work. Possibly somthing with image shack?

http://img6.imageshack.us/i/86744138.jpg/
http://img813.imageshack.us/i/27844663.jpg/
http://img29.imageshack.us/i/10copyq.jpg/
http://img413.imageshack.us/i/8copyw.jpg/
http://img405.imageshack.us/i/71704836.jpg/
http://img442.imageshack.us/i/23092029.jpg/
http://img411.imageshack.us/i/47438726.jpg/
http://img291.imageshack.us/i/9copyaw.jpg/
http://img535.imageshack.us/i/4copye.jpg/
http://img52.imageshack.us/i/92088450.jpg/
http://img207.imageshack.us/i/50158815.jpg/
http://img809.imageshack.us/i/46989169.jpg/

CSACANNONEER
01-07-2011, 3:23 PM
Since it was bought used and abused in the 60's, I'd guess it was probably built somewhere between the 1830's and 1880's. The 1960's and 1970's seem to be about the time when a few people started making new custom smokepoles. Today, some of these guns can are passed off as "originals". But, even today, there are several gunsmiths who specialize in hand crafted front stuffers. So, having hand crafeted parts is not always an indicator of a guns age.

gun toting monkeyboy
01-07-2011, 3:39 PM
It is not a reproduction. It has damascus barrels, which would be too costly to make, and too much of a liability issue for any company in it's right mind. The lack of markings would lead me to believe that it is an import from Europe for the American market some time in the late 1800s. Say 1870 to 1890-ish. I can't see the stamped markings in the oval clearly enough, but those should give you some clue as to where it was made/proofed. Most likely Belgium or Spain. I also can't really see the barrels that well, but based on the fact that they are damascus, I would be very hesitant to fire it unless I had it taken to a real gunsmith who actually knows damascus barrels. They have been known to develop hairline cracks along the grain of the pattern over time as the different steels in them oxidize at different rates. They are pretty to look at, but more likely to be unsafe than a similar barrel with regular steel construction. Without a maker's marking, I would put it at the lower end of the $100-600 spectrum. There isn't as much of a collector's market for the 19th century equivelent of an NEF Pardner shotgun. These utilitarian guns were typically sold at low prices to farmers and others who were looking for something cheap and reasonably effective until they could afford something better.

strungoutt
01-07-2011, 4:09 PM
I just went and looked at the marks on the guns barrel.

The oval shaped mark has an E on top, then a L G in the second row, and finally a star at the bottom of the oval.

Also next to the oval mark is a "16.4" mark.



Further down the barrel there is a "3045" with a LH over it.

Those are all the markings on the actual barrel. Will the oval mark help you know who made it?

gun toting monkeyboy
01-07-2011, 5:32 PM
It is Belgian. Your basic import shotgun. About 20 guage would be my guess from those markings.

Springfield45
01-07-2011, 5:54 PM
Most early Muzzle loading shotguns like that were Home or Shop made guns made by one person or families. The barrels were usually made in factories and sold to these shops were they made into a completed gun. They would range in gauges from 16, 14 and 12 and others. The barrels should have several different proof marks on each barrel of various types. There may all so be a number saying what gauge it is. Otherwise there will be no other markings on the gun except what ever the Home shop decided they wanted on it. They rarely have serial numbers. Damascus barrels are made by rapping wire or straps around a solid round bar of the desired bore size and heat welding it with hammer and anvil. As such they are as good as the skill of the blacksmith. Inspect barrels thoroughly for any cracks, bulges, dings or splits. Make shore the barrels are not separating from each other all so. If you decide to fire it it should be with reduced loads (2/3 to 1/2 of IIF powder loads of modern muzzle loading shotguns or 30 to 40 grains). You will need to get cardboard shotgun wades for loading. First powder, second a large thick wade, third one oz. of bird shot, and last a thin cardboard wade on top to hold it down. Normal Muzzle loading caps should work.

mousegun
01-08-2011, 12:42 PM
Please don't shoot this gun!


When I first got started with firearms and reloading (50+ years ago) it was well known Damascus barrels were iffy even when new. Their quality and safety were entirely dependent on the skill and integrity of the craftsman who made them, and they even varied from barrel to barrel from the same shop. The condition of the barrel depended not only on the manufacturer but on how the firearm was cared for. The situation can't have improved since then.

strungoutt
01-08-2011, 8:56 PM
Thanks for all the information. I never had any plans to shoot the gun, and will definetly never do it now. It is exactly as everyone else has said, a wonderful gun to mount on a mantle. It is such a long firearm that keeping it in a safe is almost out of the question.