Bear pistol

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Eddie2002

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Here's one I just finished with a 11 1/2 inch smooth bore in .50 caliber. I had an old lock from a 60's Japanese flintlock pistol kit sitting around which I turned into a cap lock and the barrel was turned out of 7/8 inch stainless round stock. It shoots just fine but I need to work out a better rear sight, already have installed a bead front sight on it which helps. The skull on the grip was just one of those things I felt like doing since the pistol isn't very PC and it seemed like a good idea at the time. LOL
I made all the brass work except for the trigger guard, fabricated a new hammer for the lock and made the trigger assembly.
 

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rodwha

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If I'm looking for a close range bear pistol, THIS is what comes to mind...

View attachment 51587
Bears? Yeah, I want more than just one shot myself as well. But I don’t hunt with dogs, and likely wouldn’t have someone else with me. Me, I’d opt for the 20x20 with buck n ball.

I’ve certainly like these shorter pistols and have often thought one day I’ll need one to work as a primary hunting tool.
 

Notchy Bob

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Eric, here are a couple of pictures from my copy of KENTUCKY RIFLES OF THE GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS BY RANDAL PIERCE.
Listed as a "Bear Pistol" unsigned
Overall length 20 1/16"
Barrel length 14 7/8"
Caliber .34
Breach thickness 3/4" Tapering to muzzle

View attachment 51616View attachment 51617
Thanks for the pictures, Barry Strickland. That's what we're talking about.

Notchy Bob
 

toot

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Here's one I just finished with a 11 1/2 inch smooth bore in .50 caliber. I had an old lock from a 60's Japanese flintlock pistol kit sitting around which I turned into a cap lock and the barrel was turned out of 7/8 inch stainless round stock. It shoots just fine but I need to work out a better rear sight, already have installed a bead front sight on it which helps. The skull on the grip was just one of those things I felt like doing since the pistol isn't very PC and it seemed like a good idea at the time. LOL
I made all the brass work except for the trigger guard, fabricated a new hammer for the lock and made the trigger assembly.
NICE, that you repurposed it into a gun!!
 

toot

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just how in history were hand gun's / pistols rely ever used on large game back in days of old, such as DEER & BRUIN . just curious if any one knows" or are they just a passing fancy?
 

Bob McBride

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I can tell you there is some terrain in the South that is virtually impassible with a long gun. Some of the woods on the back of my farm is so entangled with briars, brambles, and vines that you can easily find yourself strung up like Frodo in Shelob’s web and a pistol is the only practical way of getting through with a firearm. It’s impractical to travel around all these clumps of tangled mess so I can imagine a hunting scenario that included dogs where a long barreled pistol would be just the thing.
 

Loyalist Dave

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Pedersoli makes a 18”
Bounty - 1-18 twist
Only in 45 cal
Here's what he means...

The Pedersoli Bounty Hunter, in caplock. They come in .45 or .50, and you can get them in Flintlock. Barrel length is just a fraction over 16". The photo is from Cabela's.

BOUNTY HUNTER PISTOL CAPLOCK.JPG


Pedersoli lists a flintlock kit..., not sure I'd intentionally want to hunt with a flintlock vs. a bear

LD
 
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Barry Strickland

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toot, I don't know about deer and pistols but I am familiar with the bears and pistols. This is not from my actual experience but from when I was a child around the hunting camp campfire. The old timers would talk of the chase of the dogs and treeing a bear. The bear would be dispatched with a pistol and down it would fall from the tree and the dogs immediately upon it. The area I was raised in was east central Florida where the woods were thick and difficult to run through. This was 65 years ago or probably more but it was a time in my life I remember and cherish immensely.
 

Notchy Bob

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I can tell you there is some terrain in the South that is virtually impassible with a long gun. Some of the woods on the back of my farm is so entangled with briars, brambles, and vines that you can easily find yourself strung up like Frodo in Shelob’s web and a pistol is the only practical way of getting through with a firearm. It’s impractical to travel around all these clumps of tangled mess so I can imagine a hunting scenario that included dogs where a long barreled pistol would be just the thing.
Boy howdy, I couldn't agree more!

The southern mountain rifles associated with the areas where these pistols originated typically had barrels close to four feet long, and weighed 10-11 pounds. It would be a real challenge carrying one of those, following a pack of hounds running through canebrakes or rhododendron "hells." A long-barreled pistol with fine sights would be a logical alternative.

The Gillespie and Mont Plott bear pistols illustrated in a previous post are both shown with original flap holsters. Considering the length of the carry strap on the Plott holster, I believe it was probably carried slung over the shoulder. This would allow the pistol to be clasped close to the body when going through the thick stuff, yet provide ready access when the weapon had to be deployed.

I haven't found much about "Bear Pistols" in the literature, but the story behind this interesting weapon appears to be taking shape.

Notchy Bob
 

oreclan

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I am a flintlock rifle guy and don't own any BP pistols, I made most of my BP guns so I have the process down. My nephew is a gun nut, any kind of gun and has lot of them, he has a lot of big bore unmentionable hand guns and wants us to build him a Tennessee Bear pistol to hunt deer with.

He wants a 14" barrel in .50 or .54.

Do you guys know of any plans for such a pistol? I told him he would have to have the barrel made as 12" is as long as I have seen . I also noticed that 1 in 20 is common for pistol barrels, if this requirement is the best option for a pistol a barrel cut off of a different twist might not work well.

As you can tell, I am in the dark about getting the correct barrel to do what he wants from his future pistol, I am sure he will want percussion.

I was watching a Ky Afield segment where the host was deer hunting with just such a pistol, looked like fun and he did get a deer.
W.E. Rayl of Gassaway, WV 26624, will make you a barrel any size you want. I have purchased several over the years and while it may take up to a year they are exactly as ordered.
 

Treestalker

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Here's mine, 50 cal cut own rifle barrel, 15 inches long, 1 in 48 twist. This is a one hole gun at 25 yards. I built mine in a Trapper style, ordered the stock blank from Pecatonica River with the barrel inleted, I did the rest. I made the trigger guard, ram rod pipe and side plate. Poured pewter nose cap. Lock is a Traditions, bought off of Fleabay for cheap. With 45 grains of black powder it's shooting around 1425View attachment 51532. I built this gun with low expectations because of the 1 in 48 twist, had I known it was going to be such a tack driver I would have spent more time on it. I will be in my bow blind with it tomorrow.
Just looked at this picture again; two perfect shots in the squirrels' necks, saving the brains! I lived in SE and East Texas for my first 38 years, and hunted the limb-rat forever. I can vouch to the un-initiated that your long barreled pistol is a neccessity in those woods; it can be 100 yards to the first limb of those pine trees. Used to take a 20 mule team just to walk those logs out. Old timers said they had to salt their bullets to keep the squirrels' meat from becoming blinky just waiting on them to hit the ground. Flying squirrels used to get vertigo and crash from lack of atmospheric oxygen at such altitudes.
 

Treestalker

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Here's one I just finished with a 11 1/2 inch smooth bore in .50 caliber. I had an old lock from a 60's Japanese flintlock pistol kit sitting around which I turned into a cap lock and the barrel was turned out of 7/8 inch stainless round stock. It shoots just fine but I need to work out a better rear sight, already have installed a bead front sight on it which helps. The skull on the grip was just one of those things I felt like doing since the pistol isn't very PC and it seemed like a good idea at the time. LOL
I made all the brass work except for the trigger guard, fabricated a new hammer for the lock and made the trigger assembly.
The Jolly Roger makes it the ultimate pirate pistol, and stainless helps the barrel stay rust free in the salty spray! Well done!
 

1950DAVE

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Just looked at this picture again; two perfect shots in the squirrels' necks, saving the brains! I lived in SE and East Texas for my first 38 years, and hunted the limb-rat forever. I can vouch to the un-initiated that your long barreled pistol is a neccessity in those woods; it can be 100 yards to the first limb of those pine trees. Used to take a 20 mule team just to walk those logs out. Old timers said they had to salt their bullets to keep the squirrels' meat from becoming blinky just waiting on them to hit the ground. Flying squirrels used to get vertigo and crash from lack of atmospheric oxygen at such altitudes.
Treestalker, I don't know where you are now but with that bit of zaduation you are still in Texas , regardless your physical place of abode. For those who can't figger it out, zaduation was used by old timers around these parts to describe an outlandish overstatement of fact.
Dave
 

Notchy Bob

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I know this post is a little dusty but thought I would share a photo of an original I recently found. Barrel seems to be from of a .58 caliber rifle.View attachment 66742
Now, that's an interesting pistol! Thanks for showing it! I'm intrigued by that knob on the underside of the fore stock... It must be a "palm rest," for lack of a better term, to allow two-handed shooting.

More details, measurements, more photos, and any history you can provide on this piece would be appreciated. I'm guessing it's probably a "parts gun," possibly using a salvaged rifle-musket barrel and band. Hard to say for sure. I'm not sure what is shadow versus substance up near the muzzle. Does this pistol carry a ramrod?

Thanks!

Notchy Bob
 
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