C. G. Bonehill - Photos added

Discussion in 'Curio & Relics Forum' started by HerbyJr, Jun 5, 2006.

  1. HerbyJr

    HerbyJr New Member

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    I've recently acquired a 22 called "The Rifleman". I know it is called the Rifleman because it says so right on the side! I'm no dummy. ;) Anyway, it was converted to a 22 by C. G. Bonehill for the "Society of Miniature Rifle Clubs". I've done a Google search on the rifle and picked up a little bit of history on the SMRC and Bonehill, but I was curious to find out if you guys here know anything more about it. I'd also like to know a rough value if possible. Thanks in advance.


    H.

    Here's a few pictures:
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    Last edited: Jun 5, 2006
  2. southernshooter

    southernshooter New Member

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    I could'nt tell you anything about it other than I would like to have it
  3. HerbyJr

    HerbyJr New Member

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    This is pretty much all I found in my google search:

    From about 1900, C G Bonehill were the main suppliers of rifles to the "Society of Miniature Rifle Clubs". The Society was founded to encourage rifle shooting amongst working class men, and it was largely responsible for establishing smallbore rifle shooting as a sport in England. For this purpose, old .303 Martini-Enfield rifles were re-barrelled to .22 rimfire and sold at very reasonable prices.
    Christopher G. Bonehill was born in 1831 in Birmingham.
    In 1851 he founded the firm C.G. Bonehill for the manufacturer of Firearms, including military and miniature rifles, Sporting guns and Air rifles.
    He was based at :-
    Belmont Firearms Works
    Price Street.
    Birmingham.
  4. polishshooter

    polishshooter Active Member

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    Well, that is definitly a British Martini-Henry or at least a Martini "short lever" action, I know THAT much just by looking at it :p :p

    ANY Martini action will have SOME value to a collector, and I know there IS collector interest in them. Yours seems to be a rare model, too, so it would probably be worth a premium, or a little more than another "typical" .22 Martini, I would guess anyway. I DO know you could get that action chambered in just about any cartridge, it was pretty much a contemporary of, and as strong and accurate, and as popular as, the Remington Rolling Block was at the same time.

    The Martini in various calibers, usually .450 to .500, usually black powder big bores, was the main rifle of the British army in the late 1800s almost until 1900.

    Unfortunately I'm NOT a Martini collector, but somebody here will come along with some answers.

    However I LOVE to research, and I have a few good gun refernce books laying around, so I will start digging and see what I can find.

    You MIGHT get lucky doing a Google search on "Martini .22" or "Martini-Henry .22" or even just 'Martini-Henry." You MIGHT just get directed to a Martini site that will have answers.

    You can do it from the bottom of this page too.
  5. HerbyJr

    HerbyJr New Member

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    Thanks Polish...I look forward to anything you might find out. Oh, and good to see you again. It has been quite some time since I've been on the boards.


    H.
  6. polishshooter

    polishshooter Active Member

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    Well, I see you were already doing that when I posted!

    Oh well! "A true measure of a man's intelligence is how much they think like me!" :p

    The Martini was NOT originally chambered for the .303, in fact there are some on the surplus market now that HAVE been "converted" to .303, but are advertised as "unsafe" to shoot with modern .303 ammo, because the action is actually designed for Blackpowder rounds. I'm not sure if the .303 was ORIGINALLY designed as a BP cartridge, SOME of the early rounds from "The age of rifles" were....it MIGHT have been, with a round nose lead bullet and a gas check. But the Martini action was developed and first issued a few years before the .303 was developed and adopted. Most were big bore .450, .455. .577 etc.

    But it would handle a .22 easily, and many were converted to it when the .22 first became popular. Plus many early .22 cartridges WERE loaded with blackpowder.

    I'm not sure if it is or was actually called the "Martini Enfield." Enfield was the main factory that made British martial arms, so it is more pobably a "Martini" or Martini-Henry" made at the Enfield Arsenal. I could be wrong.
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2006

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