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Old 04-23-2019, 07:52 PM
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Default firearms of the north and south

these are a few from the collection.
1- LAC Kerr percussion sniper rifle with Whitworth hex bore imported from England used by CSA 10" grouping at 1200 yards first 3 pictures
2- Rigdon&Ansley CSA made 36 cal. percussion revolver second 3 pictures
3- Sharps percussion Cavalry carbine used by both sides but primary to the north last 2 pictures. I have a lot more if anyone is interested in them.
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Old 04-23-2019, 08:16 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

Quote:
I have a lot more if anyone is interested in them.
Yes!
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Old 04-23-2019, 08:44 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

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Originally Posted by jim slagle View Post
Yes!
are you interested in the history of each weapon also or are you already well versed in the weapons of that era. A lot of firearm development happened in that time frame . flintlock/percussion to cartridge in a very short time. every gun that I have is original/antique and yes I shoot all of them.
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Old 04-23-2019, 08:55 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

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Originally Posted by m1west View Post
are you interested in the history of each weapon also or are you already well versed in the weapons of that era. A lot of firearm development happened in that time frame . flintlock/percussion to cartridge in a very short time. every gun that I have is original/antique and yes I shoot all of them.
I would think a little history with each one would be great if you have the time. I know just enough to get myself confused and Iím sure there are other folks our there in the same boat.
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Old 04-23-2019, 09:16 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

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Originally Posted by jim slagle View Post
I would think a little history with each one would be great if you have the time. I know just enough to get myself confused and Iím sure there are other folks our there in the same boat.
OK I will post a few each day. A little history on the Lac with the Whitworth barrel. They shoot a hex projectile of 45cal and 630 grains with anywhere from 70 grains of 2f black powder to 120 grains depending on range. No more than a couple hundred made it through the blockades. in 1862 they cost $1000.00 when an Enfield musket cost $8.00 at the time. One story from the war was when a general named Sedgwick or Sedwick was scolding a cannon crew for jumping and ducking claiming that no-one could hit an elephant from that distance. a second later he was hit in the eye at 800 to 1000 yards from a confederate sniper with a Whitworth rifle
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Old 04-23-2019, 09:38 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

I too would like to cast my vote on more information on these incredible firearms and more importantly revered pieces of history.

Of course I own no firearms at all any more having lost them all in a tragic boating accident on Lake Champlain, but, of course, I still have a keen interest on reading about them.
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Old 04-23-2019, 10:34 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

I'm more of a modern arms sort of guy but this is fascinating!
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Old 04-24-2019, 09:40 AM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

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I'm more of a modern arms sort of guy but this is fascinating!
me too until I started shooting black powder. Every rifle will have a load that it likes. Bullet weight and charge. it is a lot of fun finding that load that rifle likes. Im talking rifles with rifling not smooth bore they are good out to about 75 yards. The mis conception is that blackpowder rifles are not that accurate is not a true statement. I have 1 little .32 cal. percussion target rifle with iron sights that I took $50.00 of my son with against an ar15 $25.00 at 50 yards and another $25.00 at 100 yards and I can shoot that rifle all day for less than $5.00
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Old 04-24-2019, 09:41 AM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

Nice, I have a Merrill breech loading carbine stashed away in a safe. And an assortment of old derringers. It's always fun to take them out and show them to people.
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Old 04-24-2019, 01:47 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

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Originally Posted by PBinWA View Post
Nice, I have a Merrill breech loading carbine stashed away in a safe. And an assortment of old derringers. It's always fun to take them out and show them to people.
The Merrill is a fairly rare gun. Im pretty sure its a .52 or .54 cal. with a paper cartridge like the Sharps percussion rifle.
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Old 04-24-2019, 06:30 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

OK here we go
1- the first picture is a 54 cal. 530 grain paper cartridge for the Sharps carbine posted last time. the paper is cotton writing paper with 50 grains of 2f and corn meal filler. while on this subject I will elaborate a little. There are two Cardinal rules to blackpowder both will ruin the rifle at a minimum and can and will injure you and anyone else close by. 1- never shoot a charge with an air space between the powder and the bullet. Black powder is an explosive not a propellant. 2- never and I mean never put any amount even 1 grain of smokeless powder in one ever. It is almost impossible to hurt one in any other way. You could fill the barrel with black powder and it would just blow the un burnt powder out the end.


2- the second 3 pictures are a Smith Cavalry carbine used primarily by the north. .52 cal. 480 grain bullet and 30 grains of 2f with corn meal filler. The reason for 30 grains an filler is both the Sharps and the Smith are much more accurate for target shooting downloaded and the filler is to eliminate an air space in the chamber.


3-the third 3 pictures are a 1861 Springfield .58 cal.rifled musket made in 1864 it fires a .577 cal. Minie ball an easy load 630 grain expanding bullet. they are accurate out to about 300 yards. shoots to sights 100 yards with 50 grains of 2f probably the most common rifle in the war primarily used by the north.

4- the last 3 picture are an 1858 Remington percussion revolver in.44cal. can put up to 40 grains of 3f but best accuracy with a 220 grain conical bullet with 25 grains of 3f and corn meal filler I also use a tallow lube placed under the bullet to keep foweling soft and to seal the charge to prevent chain firing
. Used primarily by the north these revolvers were made for close knock down power. the Navy revolvers in .36 cal. are more accurate and used after the war by gun fighters such as Wild Bill Hickok for that reason.
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Old 04-24-2019, 06:53 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

when shooting black powder think Artillery big heavy bullet traveling slow unaffected by wind. I Have found them to surpass most modern rifles on accuracy you just can't shoot a lot of bullets fast. Ironically the latest hunting bullets are subsonic they impart the energy from the bullet into the game instead of passing right through. Maybe they had it right 160 years ago and just now realized it.
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Old 04-25-2019, 11:22 AM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

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Originally Posted by m1west View Post
The Merrill is a fairly rare gun. Im pretty sure its a .52 or .54 cal. with a paper cartridge like the Sharps percussion rifle.

You might like this book if you don't have it:
https://www.amazon.com/Carbines-Civi.../dp/B0006E22QK


It has all the details about the carbines including the purchase information by the respective army. It has my Merrill in there.
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Old 04-25-2019, 01:38 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

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You might like this book if you don't have it:
https://www.amazon.com/Carbines-Civi.../dp/B0006E22QK


It has all the details about the carbines including the purchase information by the respective army. It has my Merrill in there.
I don't have that one but have Fladermans guide to antique American firearms and there values. it is a few years old. it has your Merrill in it there are 2 types of carbines first and second also a rifle. one of the carbines has a patch box. which do you have? the book is a few years old but it values your carbine around $3000.00 depending on model and condition. if it in good shape I can help you develop a load for it so you can shoot it if your interested in that. its cartridge is similar to the Sharps and the Smith carbines that I have shot a lot. looks like your rifle is .54 cal. same as the Sharps.
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Old 04-25-2019, 01:48 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

Yes it is a .54 with the patch box. It was loaded with a 400 Grain bullet and 40 grains of powder.

But I'm not sure I want to try and shoot it. It's just for looking at these days.

You would like that book it has all the correspondence and purchase requests from the military, patent info and diagrams and anecdotes from the soldiers.

I like this one:

"During the 1863-1864 Ordnance Department survey of officers using various breech-loading carbines in field use. 91 officers responded on the Merrill. The results were: Best - 5; Good - 14; Fair -13; Poor - 16; Worthless - 43."


I guess in 20 years if I'm still alive, I'll find someone to pass it on to. Or maybe it will be worth $5000 by then and I'll sell it.
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Old 04-25-2019, 02:51 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

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Originally Posted by PBinWA View Post
Yes it is a .54 with the patch box. It was loaded with a 400 Grain bullet and 40 grains of powder.

But I'm not sure I want to try and shoot it. It's just for looking at these days.

You would like that book it has all the correspondence and purchase requests from the military, patent info and diagrams and anecdotes from the soldiers.

I like this one:

"During the 1863-1864 Ordnance Department survey of officers using various breech-loading carbines in field use. 91 officers responded on the Merrill. The results were: Best - 5; Good - 14; Fair -13; Poor - 16; Worthless - 43."


I guess in 20 years if I'm still alive, I'll find someone to pass it on to. Or maybe it will be worth $5000 by then and I'll sell it.
if you change your mind on shooting it let me know. I have proofed and shoot flintlocks more than 250 years old.
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Old 04-25-2019, 04:11 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

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if you change your mind on shooting it let me know. I have proofed and shoot flintlocks more than 250 years old.

Yeah, that's about the only way I would shoot it. While standing behind a tree too.
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Old 04-25-2019, 04:53 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

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Yeah, that's about the only way I would shoot it. While standing behind a tree too.
thats the proof test. Double charge mic. the barrel every 1/2" and record. proof test and re mic. the barrel if the numbers don't change your good to go. That rifle is .36 cal and will group 2" at 100 yards off a bench.
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Old 04-25-2019, 05:40 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

OK here we go again.

1- the first group of pictures is a English pattern 1853 rifled musket .58 cal just like the Springfield 1861 Springfield I already posted. It is the second most common rifle of the war. Shoots the expanding Minne ball and is similar in accuracy as the Springfield. Good to about 300 yards. The Springfield was a loose copy of this rifle. The lock was made by EP bond and the K on the toe of the butplate indicates Kerr inspected and sold it there is also a JS with an anchor on the comb but won't show up in a picture, that is one of the confederate inspection marks.

2- the second group are a 1851 Colt navy percussion revolver in .36 cal. They were used on both sides primarily by the north. Much more accurate than the .45 cal 1860 army and used after the war by gunfighters for that reason. Almost every Confederate made revolver was patterned after this revolver.Most had the barrel turned round after the breech.

3- the third group are an example of what the north used as sniper rifles at the onset of the war. They were personally owned Target rifles. This one was made by Andrew Wufferin in Philadelphia Pa. they were very ornate heavy and delicate this one weighs 20 pounds. Most like this one used a conical bullet or Pickett bullet that is shaped like a candy corn The barrel has a false muzzle that plugs into the barrel on 4 pins that align the bullet in the barrel perfectly then removed before firing . Most were very accurate out to 500-600 yards
later in the war the Sharps rifle came into play just as accurate and can shoot much faster and liter too. This one is kicking my ass I put it away a year ago I can't find the load it likes. The last time I shot it the bullets were hitting the target sideways at 100 yards obviously too heavy of bullet but its .60 cal. and the rifling is too fast for round ball?? Part of the fun.
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Old 04-25-2019, 07:31 PM
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Default Re: firearms of the north and south

Fascinating!

Thanks for posting M1West and guys.
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