1660 Spanish Pistols

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Here's another early style original .. maybe 1740's or earlier
No makersView attachment 168231 name that I can see.
Hi Dag

That is a beautiful pocket/overcoat size pistol. And in great condition. Note the lack of a belt hook. The Spanish seemed to be almost obsessed with using belt hooks on their pistols. Both military and civilian. Most of the pistols that lack the belt hook seem to be of this small pocket size. Which makes sense since their size for concealment would make the hook unnecessary.
Also, interesting that it is unmarked. Somewhat unusual for Spanish guns. Possibly the original owner requested this so that the gun could not be traced back to the original gunsmith in case the pistol ever fell in the wrong hands ? LOL
Again, very nice pistol.

Rick
 
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The fact that the frizzens have the characteristic "grooves" very often found on the Spanish guns, is great. One of the major objections that I have for some of the Repro Spanish muskets is they lack that frizzen type.

LD
There has always been much speculation about the grooves in the frizzen. Personally, I've never found them to be an advantage or disadvantage. But flints do seem to last a bit longer between knappings. Possibly acting as a some what self-knapping feature (?)
But the grooved frizzen only persisted with locks made in Spain, Italy, and much of the Middle East.

Rick
 
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the two/pair of the first ones the locks look to be original?
Hi Toot

The locks on both pistols were assembled from a kit from The Rifle Shoppe, #614. The description being: 1650's Spanish Miquelet Lock. The original this lock was copied from was in the James Lavin collection. I used this lock as it was from the Mid-17th Century, and just by coincidence looked identical to the lock on the original pistol.

Rick
 
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Speaking of belt hooks: While belt hooks were prominent on Spanish pistols of the period, I don't know how much they were in use during the Mid-17th Century. Plus the description of the original pistol as a "horse" pistol (saddle pistol) which they certainly are by their size, makes me guess it was made without a hook. And mostly, I was never able to get a photo/detail of the left side of the pistol. Thus, the copies were made without a side plate or belt hook. So it just had to be an educated guess.

Rick
 

Loyalist Dave

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There has always been much speculation about the grooves in the frizzen. Personally, I've never found them to be an advantage or disadvantage. But flints do seem to last a bit longer between knappings. Possibly acting as a some what self-knapping feature (?)
But the grooved frizzen only persisted with locks made in Spain, Italy, and much of the Middle East.

Rick
There is some speculation, that the grooves do two things. Reduce friction on the flint edge so that one gets a better spark, as the speed of the edge of the flint moving over the surface of the frizzen is not reduced as fast as it is with a smooth frizzen, AND increases the pounds per square inch of the edge vs the steel of the frizzen surface thus also increasing the sparks, or allowing a flint that degrades over time due to firings to continue to produce sufficient sparks, for a greater number of shots.

LD
 
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There is some speculation, that the grooves do two things. Reduce friction on the flint edge so that one gets a better spark, as the speed of the edge of the flint moving over the surface of the frizzen is not reduced as fast as it is with a smooth frizzen, AND increases the pounds per square inch of the edge vs the steel of the frizzen surface thus also increasing the sparks, or allowing a flint that degrades over time due to firings to continue to produce sufficient sparks, for a greater number of shots.

LD
Hi Dave

That speculation may be accurate. Around 1750 the Spanish military changed from using miquelet locks to the French style flintlock for their muskets and pistols. But still retained the use of the grooved frizzen. So there must have been a wide consensus that the grooves had at least some advantage.
Curiously, around 1790 the Spanish military returned to the miquelet lock believing it to be stronger than the French style flintlock.
Most miquelet locks I've studied/used to tend to have stronger mainsprings.

Rick
 

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Hi Dave

That speculation may be accurate. Around 1750 the Spanish military changed from using miquelet locks to the French style flintlock for their muskets and pistols. But still retained the use of the grooved frizzen. So there must have been a wide consensus that the grooves had at least some advantage.
Curiously, around 1790 the Spanish military returned to the miquelet lock believing it to be stronger than the French style flintlock.
Most miquelet locks I've studied/used to tend to have stronger mainsprings.

Rick
Yes the Spanish Empire was massive, much much larger than the British at that time, and logistic support of such a far flung empire was very problematic. It was said that the miquelet lock could function with a piece of quartz, while other nations' locks had to have at least chert or better yet, flint. Now the quartz was apparently not nearly as reliable as flint but better to quickly recock the musket and try again, maybe more than once, than to have no way of getting it to fire when one is thousands of sea miles away from resupply, eh?

LD
 

toot

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Hi Toot

The locks on both pistols were assembled from a kit from The Rifle Shoppe, #614. The description being: 1650's Spanish Miquelet Lock. The original this lock was copied from was in the James Lavin collection. I used this lock as it was from the Mid-17th Century, and just by coincidence looked identical to the lock on the original pistol.

Rick
Rick, they look to be spot on, I would have never known. they came out just fine. thanks' for the reply.
 

toot

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There is some speculation, that the grooves do two things. Reduce friction on the flint edge so that one gets a better spark, as the speed of the edge of the flint moving over the surface of the frizzen is not reduced as fast as it is with a smooth frizzen, AND increases the pounds per square inch of the edge vs the steel of the frizzen surface thus also increasing the sparks, or allowing a flint that degrades over time due to firings to continue to produce sufficient sparks, for a greater number of shots.

LD
they knew what they were doing!
 

toot

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Speaking of belt hooks: While belt hooks were prominent on Spanish pistols of the period, I don't know how much they were in use during the Mid-17th Century. Plus the description of the original pistol as a "horse" pistol (saddle pistol) which they certainly are by their size, makes me guess it was made without a hook. And mostly, I was never able to get a photo/detail of the left side of the pistol. Thus, the copies were made without a side plate or belt hook. So it just had to be an educated guess.

Rick
makes since to me!
 

wulf1928

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I made several Miquelet pistols. Some with belt hooks. I send Rickystl a picture of two made completely from scratch. Maybe he will post
the pair. They are not a match pair as I made them about 12 years apart. Both smooth bore in 62 cal and shoot wonderful.
 
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Hi Wulf

Glad to oblige. Here is the pic of your pistols. Looks to be of the Peninsular/Ripoll style. Let us know how you made them.

Rick

1666035158899.jpeg
 

wulf1928

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Well. Ricky sent the Pic of my MIquelets and I wrote a report on them so that is as far I got I have no idea how to attach the report.
 

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Uncle Miltie

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I heard from an old-timer years go that the grooved frizzen surface acted as a gutter to allow moisture on the surface of the frizzen a place to go instead of allowing a film to remain on the frizzen in between the flint and steel.
 

SmokepoleSam

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Try taking a picture of the report and send them the same as you would a real picture? I hope this works good luck. Maybe someone else has a better idea.
Well. Ricky sent the Pic of my MIquelets and I wrote a report on them so that is as far I got I have no idea how to attach the report.
 
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Well. Ricky sent the Pic of my MIquelets and I wrote a report on them so that is as far I got I have no idea how to attach the report.
Wulf: If you have an office supply/copy store near you, you can have them "scan" the report and email it directly to my personal email address. Would only take a couple minutes and a nominal charge. Then I can post it for you.

Rick
 
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