View Full Version : Saw a wheel-lock in action today

02-18-2008, 7:47 PM
An oldtimer brought a home-made wheel-lock to Chabot the other day. The whole time I was staring at the smoldering rope (which hangs from the rifle) and a seal-can of 2f powder sitting next to it. The tricky part is when, before the shot, the priming-gate is swung open and the glowing tip of the rope locks-in about 1/2" above the powder. It shot well, though, for a paper-patched round ball: about 6" group at 50yrds (no worse than the scoped-ARs flanking both side of it.)

02-18-2008, 8:50 PM
That was not a wheel lock. That was a match lock. A wheel lock has a wheel
that spins against a flint and creates sparks that ignite the powder in the priming pan. It works much like the old zippo lighters.

Scarecrow Repair
02-19-2008, 12:57 PM
get out to the Highland Games in Pleasanton Labor Day weekend. There's a reenactment group out of Sacramento who make their own matchlocks and wheellocks. Wheellocks are amazing -- they look so Rube Goldberg! They were also the cause of some of the very first gun control laws, banning them because they were the first firearms which could be hidden under a coat or in a pocket, since there was no burning cord to make things tricky. But along came flintlocks, and their simplicity made wheellocks obsolete. Flintlocks lasted 150 years until displaced by percussion cap.