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Can anyone give me insight as to the age, or manufacturer of this gun. I have learned from a local gun smith that it is a 40 caliber rifled barrel. I find no identifying marks on the barrel or stock of the gun. The only thing I find unique is the patch box. I have searched the internet and find nothing that is identical that might help identify the gun smith.
240634
240635
 

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I have read enough of these threads to tell you that if there are any identifying marks, they are going to be on the bottom of the barrel, under the stock. That, I am afraid, is all I know.
 

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You have a late period ( 1840's - 1870's ) percussion rifle .
Many of these rifles , in this time period were unmarked as to a maker and meant for sale in Hardware Stores and the like.

Your rifle does feature , double set triggers and back action lock...that is kinda neat.
The cap box appears in a Tyron Catalog from 1874.
( Edit to add...this is not to say that the rifle is a Tryon or made in 1874...just that the cap box is present in a Tryon Catalog , dated then. )

Hard to tell...but from the picture....it appears that at one time it was a full stock rifle and not a half stock rifle... Again just a guess here..as I said hard to tell from the photo.
Andy
 

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I have read enough of these threads to tell you that if there are any identifying marks, they are going to be on the bottom of the barrel, under the stock. That, I am afraid, is all I know.
George those would be proof marks on the underside of the barrels of British or Belgian made shotguns and fowlers. This rifle was made in the USA and we didn't have proof laws.

American gunsmiths would have typically signed the top flat of the barrel behind the rear sight if they bothered to sign them.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you both so much. The gun is fragile so I am afraid to dismantle it to see if there are any markings under the stock. It has been passed down from my great grandfather so the time frame is plausible. He was born in 1841. Story goes he traded a cow for the gun second hand. Again thank you the gun has always been a curiosity to me.
 

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I doubt that there will be marks under the barrel...Some makers did , Leman did at times...
But , most of these types of rifles are just marked on the barrel and lock.

With that said...
The markings , may just be who made the barrel or the lock , not the rifle builder , who assembled the rifle for sale.
Andy
 

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George those would be proof marks on the underside of the barrels of British or Belgian made shotguns and fowlers. This rifle was made in the USA and we didn't have proof laws.

American gunsmiths would have typically signed the top flat of the barrel behind the rear sight if they bothered to sign them.
That is why I usually keep my mouth shut and my fingers still. When I do say something, I am usually wrong!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The shape of the cap box is telling for the era of the rifle....1840's -1870's...
The cap box shown , while nicely done is a mass produced item found on many rifles from the era.
Andy
Thank you so much for your information. I wish the gun could tell me it's story. Seems nothing is really special or unique here just a nice piece of history.
 

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Thank you so much for your information. I wish the gun could tell me it's story. Seems nothing is really special or unique here just a nice piece of history.
Ahhh...But ...
Being passed down from your Great Grandfather is special..and perhaps unique.
And there is nothing wrong or not special with a "Hardware Store" gun...
Guns like yours kept folks fed and protected...and made history.

But I do agree it is a nice piece of history , that you are lucky to have.
And you are very welcome for any help I provided.
Andy
 

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I have enough vices, that I've stayed away from black powder muzzle loaders, so I would defer to Grizz and Andy here on this one. I trust your gunsmith had the knowledge to check to see if the gun was loaded? It wouldn't be the first time, if it was, and black powder can still go off 200+ years later.
I do have extensive experience in the preservation of old guns. I see a family heirloom that I'm sure you would like to pass down to the next generations. That stock needs a good cleaning and conditioning. Family value is priceless, no idea what collector value is. The point is, you want to preserve it, but keep it original as possible.
Rule of thumb for the brass hardware is clean, but don't polish. Leave the patina, brass only gets polished with a full restoration.
The stock can be cleaned and conditioned with boiled linseed oil from your local hardware store, and a piece of burlap. Soak burlap, wring it out, scrub the wood, and use paper towels to wipe it clean. Some old finish, smoke from hanging over the fireplace, oil, dirt, and grime is what the paper towel will be covered with. The linseed oil will condition and preserve the wood, add a sheen to it, and still look original.
Word of caution, anything like the burlap and paper towels with the linseed oil on it should be left outside to dry before you put them in the trash. With the drying process, the heat generated in a confined space by the oil, can cause spontaneous combustion.
 

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Hard to tell...but from the picture....it appears that at one time it was a full stock rifle and not a half stock rifle... Again just a guess here..as I said hard to tell from the photo.
Andy
Hey Andy, idle curiosity. What made you think it might have been full stocked at one time? I had the same thought because it doesn't look like there is a nosecap (right terminology?) on the rifle. My experience with muzzleloaders is with one Thompson Center Hawken repro, so I'm a little light in the expertise department. 😊
 

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Hey Andy, idle curiosity. What made you think it might have been full stocked at one time? I had the same thought because it doesn't look like there is a nosecap (right terminology?) on the rifle. My experience with muzzleloaders is with one Thompson Center Hawken repro, so I'm a little light in the expertise department. 😊
Hiya pdkfishing...
The square cut at the end of the of the fore stock , no nose cap there and the lack of an under-rib for the ramrod....Again just a guess here , from one photo and angle.
Andy
 

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Hello Connie K
Could you please post a picture of the front end of the stock...?
I would like to know if there is a "nose cap " there ( a piece of metal covering the stock end )
Thank you.

From your muzzle it appears that your rifle does not have a under-rib.
A under-rib is , a just about barrel length piece of metal , under the barrel , that helps guide the ram rod and will be where the ram rod thimbles are attached.
Most half stocked rifles were made with a under-rib.....the absence of one , may be a sign that the rifle was full stocked , then for some reason , the stock was shortened.

I say may in the above , because not all half stock rifles were made with a under-rib.
When saying anything about a antique muzzle loader the words :
May
Can
Sometimes
Generally
Should be used often.
Andy
Edit to add :
After a closer look ....
It seems that you have a nose cap on your rifle....and that you are missing the upper ram rod thimble....interesting....
 

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Well, she does sport a cast pewter nose cap, it may have been built as a halfstock. Perhaps the builder saved a few cents on the build by not using an under rib.
 

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Well, she does sport a cast pewter nose cap, it may have been built as a halfstock. Perhaps the builder saved a few cents on the build by not using an under rib.
Very true...and a not uncommon thing to see on rifles of this era.

And it could also be a later addition after the rifle was half stocked for some reason.....
Not arguing here.....'Cause what you say is true.

It is tough for me to say one way or the other without actually looking at the rifle and getting a 'feel" for it.
Pictures are nice and important....but one can only tell so much from a photo...nothing beats a hands on look so to speak.
Andy
 

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I don't see any evidence of tennons for pins on the underside of what I can see of the barrel, but that doesn't mean it never had them, just that it doesn't show. It's too bad the maker didn't sign it, we could have looked up the name and got a bit of information about when and where he worked.
 
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