Discussion in 'Smoothbore' started by Columbus, Apr 12, 2019.
Just how wrong is this $1,400 Argentine made Bess?(plus $200 shipping to USA)
Well it looks good and if you don’t like it I’ll take it off you, I’m no expert on besses, but I see a too much wood (?).
It looks like you got your money’s worth and then some.
I didn't order it - just looked at their website and sent a price request. The response:
The Charleville Musket price is 1400 Dollars + 200 Dollars for shipping by UPS directly to your home.
The Brown Bess Musket price is 1200 Dollars + 200 Dollars for shipping by UPS directly to your home.
All materials used are high quality tested and all components are maked by us in our worshop... we are an Italian Family, located in Argentina, and send our products around the world without problems.
If you want any references of our last customers, please, let me know!!
Greetings and accept my appologies for my limited English language!
No Apologies needed.
I can speek the kings English if I have to, with the help of a dictionary can read Latin and Spanish at a page an hour or so.
Your English is clear and crisp, and that’s a fine looking gun.
Decent looking third model bess ! walnut wood ? do you make any other patterns ?
Anyone heard of these guys, do they have a US distributor? Bess looks good, pistols look good, and I really like this French musket.
The builder is a member here. There’s been some chatter from time to time about their wheellocks too.
Here’s a recent thread. https://www.muzzleloadingforum.com/threads/german-wheelock-pistol-builder.111170/
That Bess seems like a very nice alternative to the Pedersoli et al. Anyone have any experience with them, or a trained eye to tell us that it looks pretty authentic/isn’t even close?
I must begin with the caveat that I have never completely assembled/built a Brown Bess Musket. I have done a lot of lock work and some major stock work, but never built an entire Bess from parts, let alone from scratch.
Also, before I go further, I want to state I am very impressed with the Model 1814 Musket this company makes and is shown in the video. Actually, because I was so impressed with that model and would definitely consider purchasing one if I were doing a time period I could use it in, it makes it more difficult to say how I am disappointed in their Brown Bess.
Along with the above, I must also state I am much more interested in earlier 18th century British Muskets than this one, as this one seems to be copy of a the Pattern 1793 or “India Pattern Type 1” Musket. Since I have not studied the finer points of this Pattern nearly as much as earlier Patterns, I took some time to research the Pattern 1793 and hope some of this information will be interesting to you.
To begin with, there could not be a better background link on this Pattern Bess than done by the Royal Armouries at Leeds, that houses the British Royal Collections of Arms and Armour, since it was moved there from the Tower of London in the early 1990’s. The link also allows one to click on the Bess photo on the top right and it allows you to move your cursor and enlarge portions of the Musket for better examination.
I am also using the book “The Brown Bess” by Goldstein and Mowbray as it has many detailed photo’s of this Pattern Bess.
Finally, I included the following link to give you some “flavor” of a Commercial EIC (East India Company) Musket from whence the British Ordnance Department Musket came, even though it is a few years newer. Commercial EIC Muskets were serviceable, but not as good quality as the British Ordnance Department ones. This even though the British Ordnance Department Muskets were not as good quality as their earlier Patterns, due to the huge numbers needed and the breakdown of the British Ordnance System that was caused by needing so many muskets so quickly.
OK, once the manufacturers engraved the word “Tower” and the King’s Cypher of the Crown over “G R” on the lock plate, then I suggest we must compare this reproduction with the higher quality British Ordnance Department Muskets. Overall, the lock and engraving look very good, but the inside top of Cock (original term for what is commonly /incorrectly called “the Hammer” today) must be a bit too thick, because it seems to require a rather serious indent in the stock for the Cock not to rub there. This is not a huge problem, though. However, to my mind the tang and lock Aprons (period term for the wood around the tang and lock plate), are seriously flawed. Let’s take a look at the following photo specifically again:
View attachment 8131
- Well, I guess I don't know how to link this photo so it automatically comes up, but you can click on the link and it will show you the photo.
So in the photo I was trying to link above which is the second photo in the first post, it looks like they tried to mix in the style of the P 1730 carving around the Tang and Lock Plate and did a really bad job of it. Though some of the original P 1793’s show a little dip in the wood behind the tang, it is nowhere near as pronounced as this. Not only are these carved areas not correct for this Pattern, but they are done very crudely and that surprises me since they got the M 1814 Musket done so nicely. The wrist area of the stock is also thinned way too much compared to originals.
The forearm on the Musket looks very slab sided flat and not curved as it should be in much of the center of the forearm.
Now since this is a Musket that costs more than a Pedersoli Brown Bess, I expect much better stock architecture for the money.
I don’t know what the market worldwide is for an India Pattern Brown Bess? Personally I believe they would do better with a P1742 Long Land Musket for FIW era or a P1756 Long Land Musket that could be used for both FIW and AWI Periods here in the States. Even if I were still doing War of 1812 reenacting where an India Pattern Musket was/is correct, there is no way I would pay their price for a Musket with this many major flaws.
Hi Gus, Seems like a pretty decent copy of a Brown Bess. There are some things that stand out as not historically accurate, however I can honestly attest to my researching that I've never seen two Brown Bess muskets of the same pattern that are identical, most are very close copies of the originals.
The barrel looks pretty heavy for a Brown Bess, most modern gun makers including , Pedersoli, Ed Rayl and Colrain and Christian are making barrels thicker for safety reasons. I held a persoli a few months ago and it felt heavy I noticed the barrel seemed like it was thicker, I think its a safety trend.
The biggest issue I see with this musket is the lock carvings, however I've seen some commercial Brown Bess muskets with the tear drops, however... easily customized with a 120 and 220 piece of sandpaper. I personally like a little extra wood just in case I need to sand in the future.
With the third pattern Brown Bess, there are many inter pattern designs from 1776 all the way through 1820ish. These guns were mass produced to deal with the various global conflicts that engulfed the British empire.
The Stock looks pretty good, a little thick in the breech but with these customized guns anything can be tailored, I've seen a customized long land with an extra 1/4 inch drop and thicker forestock to beef up the gun, its really what the buyer wants.
I'm working on parts for my Brown Bess. Long Land 1756 - 1766 era with a curved lock and steel rammer with the smaller diameter pipes and a convex side plate. I just haven't decided if I'm using the curved Track of the Wolf lock or a factory Pedersoli Grice Lock. Ideally I'd like the lock to say tower and the only gun maker to design a 1756 era long land Brown Bess with a curved lock plate and steel rammer with the 1756 stock was an Irish Gun maker named Smith (1746-1754), I don't know his details but I'd have to guess he purchased the curved locks on surplus once they were discontinued by the British armories.
The Goldstein book is great I recommend it.
I agree the tear drop shape finial behind the lock panels can be slimmed down to a more accurate representation for a 1793 Bess, BUT one can't fix that "wavy" or "figure 8" carving around the tang and some carving further down from the tang and on both sides of the tang, and the last carving isn't a copy of any Tower Musket. Further, for the price of the musket, why should a customer even need to be concerned about having to do these things? They should be correct or at least much closer than this.
The "wavy" or "figure 8" carving around the tang on this musket stopped being used at the Tower with the P 1742 Muskets that all had the wide and pointed "beavertail" carving 50 years before the P 1793 was accepted/made at the Tower. (The pointed beavertail carving around the tang was less expensive and actually left the stock stronger in that area and that's why the earlier/more elegant carving was dropped 50 years before). The pointed beavertail tang carving hung around from 1742 to well into the early 19th century, because it worked so well.
Further, the entire wrist area of the stock is smaller up and down and side to side and generally incorrectly shaped in cross section for any British Tower made Bess stock. This also can not be fixed without replacing the stock. Now, if a person desires to do this kind of modification to a correctly shaped stock, that is an entirely different matter; but again, I don't accept this for a Musket in this price range.
Since they chopped so much wood away from the normal Tower wrist, I would be very concerned the much too high end of the carving behind the tang would bounce off my nose or cheek during recoil. No thank you and certainly not for that kind of money, even though I can re-shape that area. For those who don't have the practice/tools/experience to reshape the carvings, why should they pay this kind of money for this musket?
Of course if they corrected the stock problems mentioned and also the flat/slab sided sections of the fore arm, they would indeed have a nice musket, even though I would still not buy one and hope most 18th century reenactors would not buy this musket, either. That's a stiff price to find out it isn't correct or acceptable for FIW and AWI reenacting. That's why I mentioned I don't know what the worldwide market is for an "Indian Pattern" Musket.
Now, I hope everyone realizes I am not making these points just to tear down this gunmaker. Actually, I hope they get the stock corrected for future sales. I would also like to see them do as accurate a copy of an earlier 18th century Brown Bess, that would be as correct for the Brown Bess musket as their M 1814 Muskets are for a later period.
The tong carving on the breech is too thick I agree, and on later third models eliminated. If it were me I would likely request that the stock be customized without it or a much more shallow carving.
Getting the stock right on a Brown Bess is very difficult, we're dealing with a gun that utilizes a lot of wood, and getting a pattern down right is not easy. The India pattern musket can't be a little complicated sometimes because some late second model napoleonic era brown bess's almost seem third model or India pattern when they were really modified second models, where you might seem more wood rather than less on some occasions.
You'll have to forgive me, I didn't see the price of the gun, I was thinking this was around $800-900, I wouldn't pay more than 800 for this musket even with desired modifications, simply because I don't know the gunsmithing standards for Argentina. Like the Indian made guns, you just don't know what types of alloys they're forging with. One reason why I'll never buy an Indian made musket is because I tried to harden an Indian made Bess Frizzen once, it turned several colors indicating to me that the alloys were a mixture of steel, cobalt and possibly nickel.
I always thought the 1814 musket was a new land pattern, which is not technically a Brown Bess, it was the first generation Tower Musket.
Yes, the price of the Musket is more than a Pedersoli before shipping, so there should be less mistakes on the stock. However, looking at the way their M1814 lock sparks, I don’t think they have a problem getting the correct steels to do the job for each purpose.
Nick, I think you may have been tired when you wrote the above? I know you know the M 1814 was an American copy of a French Musket.
I did want to mention how much I am enjoying looking at the link with the Smith P 1742 Musket dated 1746, that you posted above. It is a bit surprising to me how much the Irish Board of Ordnance sometimes allowed much wider latitude of variations to the British Ordnance Department (at London Tower) approved Patterns of Muskets, but WOW that Musket reminds me of the old song “Breaking all the Rules,” beyond even the Irish Board variations normally encountered!
The British Ordnance P 1740 Muskets were characterized as having at least one, if not two or even three main differences compared to the P 1730 Muskets. These differences were: 1. Change to Double Bridle Lock from the P 1730 Single Pattern Lock, 2. Change to the simpler Carving around the Tang and Lock from the fancier P1730 carving, and 3. Change to a substantially more robust trigger guard (that they used for the rest of the 18th century) from the comparative weak “Dutch” Style Trigger Guard of the P 1730. These changes to the “transitional” P 1740 only lasted two years as the P 1742 Muskets had all these changes incorporated and were well established by the time the Irish Smith Musket you linked was made in 1746 and four years after the P 1742 was established.
I have long been intrigued in planning a P 1740 Musket that had the earlier P 1730 Lock and Tang Carving, as I consider that more elegant, but would have the updated Double Bridle Lock and more robust Trigger Guard. However, the Irish Smith Musket brought a whole new dimension to being a transitional throwback to the P1740 Musket even 4 years after the P 1742 was well established and if I may say so, is a further transition from the P 1740 and rather surprising to say the least.
First the carving around the Tang is the earlier P 1730 “Wavy” or “Figure 8” style, but perhaps a bit more subdued than normally seen. The Lock Apron carving has the Tear Drops behind the Lock of the P 1730, but the carving forward of the lock was changed to the simpler styling, and the carving does not go under the lock and not seen on both sides on the bottom side of the stock. So the Irish Smith Musket’s carvings may be said to be a further transitional style between the P 1730/40 and the P 1742.
Another further transitional style between the P 1730/40 and the P 1742 on the Smith Musket is the Trigger Guard. It is a bit more robust than the P 1730 “Dutch” Style, but the Trigger Bow is not as substantial as the then new fully robust style used on some P 1740’s and on all muskets from the P 1742 onward and through the end of the 18th century.
I may be mistaken about this because the excellent pictures of the Smith Musket don’t show the Top/Rear of the Butt Stock, but it looks to me like the Tang on the Smith Musket is shorter and slightly different from either the P 1740 or P 1742 Butt Plate Tangs?
Have to say I've been thinking in jest, "Good Grief, it's hard to believe even the Irish Board of Ordnance allowed this much variation to the Basic P1742 Pattern!" But considering how Britain still had two more years to go before the end of the War of the Austrian when the Smith musket was made in 1746, they must have been much more inclined to allow variations from the basic Pattern.
The final interesting thing I’ve noticed about the Irish Smith Musket is that it seems to have been converted from Wood Rammer Pipes with bushings in the forward pipes and an unseen spring attached to the bottom of the entry Pipe for use with an Iron/Steel Rammer. It also has a nose band added to the front of the stock. Since the provenance supplied mentions this Musket was marked to the 35th Regiment of Foot, it is possible and even perhaps probable these modifications were done by Regimental Artificers after the Regiment came to America in 1756 for the FIW. The reason it may be or was probable that these modifications were made here was the British Ordnance Practice during the FIW of Ordering British Muskets (especially with Iron/Steel Rammers) were taken from Regiments coming to America and issued Wood Rammer Muskets from the Irish Board of Ordnance. (Iron/Steel Rammer Muskets were saved for Regiments going to the Continent, where the British thought was the greater danger to the Home Islands.)
Bottom line, if one wishes to get a bit creative in making a copy of a British Government made/owned/supplied Brown Bess Musket, then one would do well to check out those made by the Irish Board of Ordnance over the years. One might find original examples of almost anything one wishes to put on their repro musket!
P.S. To my post above. I forgot to mention the Smith Musket "Thumb Piece" as they called it or "wrist escutcheon" as perhaps more commonly known today, is also noticeably different from the standard British Ordnance Department piece. I'm going to have to do more research to see if this was a common style on Irish Board of Ordnance Muskets.
Hi dear Forum Members!!!
First Thanck you for all the peoples writing and teaching about the Brown Bess Muskets!!
My Father and me are paiying special attention of all the detalis you are looking on our handmade replica!
We prommise make the corrections to offer a most better product. Really, Thanck you for your time!
We can modify all easily because we are making our products one by one and all the product is handmade... maybe we can modify our product faster than it would take you to raise the money to buy one!!
When Columbus say Our Brown Bess price is 1400 Dollars (+ 200 Dollars shipping)... That is INCORRECT!!!
You can read my private answer pasted by Columbus with the price of 2 Diffe rent products... Charleville musket and Brown Bess Musket.
Our Brown Bess Musket price is 1200 Dollars + Shipping.
Way we are making and 1793 Tipe 1 ???
That model be used for the British invations on 1806 here, in Argentina!
America is NOT ONLY NORTH AMERICA!!!
When I read the comparation of our craftmade work with the "India decorative guns"... (The USA people love buy that garbage), I understand how much know the people about quality!
Our products are much more superior and is maked under international safety normatives... Our materials are high quality and our products are exported to Germany and others countries, passing all the bank proofs without problems!
In reference about the little diffrences with an original India Pattern Tipe 1, we can modify it!!
What can you speak about the Pedersoli Brown Bess???
They make an 1762 Grise, and I can't see that model exactly like the Pedersoli into the Brown Bess Book!!
See the pictures down!
Grise are dated 1757/1759... not 1762!!!
The engraved hammer is horrible!
The original model don't have entry thimble and don't habe butt nose!!!
But the people LOVE the Pedersoli Grise Brown Bess!!!
And the price of the Pedersoli industrial reproduction??? See the Picture Down!!
The India Pattern 1793 Tipe 1
Remember ... We are agree, we are thinking some upgrades suggested!!
On the pictures you can see an very used and old India Pattern!! the wood edges are very worn!
Our replica is so close!!
"One thing about the Brown Bess is that they’re all very different, many reinactors get picky or just bored with the same older Pedersoli and Miruko patterns. Other than the markings on the guns, what really separates a F&I War and AWI and War of 1812 Brown Bess is just markings, and possibly the wooden rammer, but that’s not to say that during the F&I war no British muskets had steel rammer, most used wood but many did have steel rammer."
The different Pattern Muskets are very different, but even though slightly different due to having been made by hand and thus not perfectly interchangeable; the differences between original muskets made to the same or different Patterns are not that difficult identify, most of the time. This enough so when a replacement lock or part was added later on, that can also be identified most of the time.
Unless things have changed drastically in FIW or AWI reenacting in the last 8 years, both Pedersoli and Miroku Besses are allowed for both era's of reenacting.
Now as to using an Iron/Steel Rammer used in FIW reenacting, technically the first British Ordnance Pattern Musket made for an Iron/Steel Rammer Musket WITH small diameter pipes, was the P 1748 and as of this writing, NONE of those muskets have been identified as having been shipped to America in the FIW. They were all retained in Britain or used on the Continent.
HOWEVER, there were indeed two types of Besses that were either modified for Iron/Steel Rammers or actually came from England that way. The first type was the Wood Rammer P 1742's sent here and modified with the Bushings and Retaining Spring modification mentioned earlier. Repair Parts lists sent from England both with or for Artificers here in the Colonies, included these items. The other type would be mainly Commercially made Arms and not British Ordnance Arms, though there is at least two exceptions I know to that rule of thumb. (The exceptions were both P 1756 and P 1769 British Ordnance Carbines that were made with reduced size Pipes for the Steel Rammers.) Commercially made "Para-Military" Muskets sometimes came with reduced pipes and steel rammers as did some Officer's Fusils. But again at this time of writing, there are no examples of British Ordnance Department Muskets that came that way, though some Irish Board of Ordnance Muskets may have come with reduced Pipes and an Iron/Steel Rammer.
So if one wants the reduced pipes and Iron/Steel Rammer on a British Government assembled/owned/supplied Infantry Musket for FIW re-enacting, then the lock should have either an Irish Maker's Name on the lock or maybe "Dublin Castle" on it.
Grice 1762 lock was used on the Long Land 1755 musket.
Pedersoli designed/reproduced the lock for a long made by Coach Harness of England in 1976. They eventually used this lock on the shorter barrel one they now sell.
I agree the Pedersoli flintcock engravings are off ..... but replaceable.
Would you consider reproducing a pattern 1755? I’d buy one !
I myself would be more interested in that 1814 Charleville
Those 1748 muskets by willets, farmer and edge Were made in very limited numbers; less than 10,000 and most that are found in museuns are in near mint condition suggesting that they were not used for military purposes but rather decorative or possibly guard units; Could they have been shipped to America to be used anything is possible but I doubt you could identify one in its original state as they were probably altered overtime with the different ramrod pipes and probably might’ve had the barrel cut
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