Gun show find - Jezail?

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TC

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Ok fellows. Bought this curiosity today. Looks to possibly be a jezail. Looking for opinions and knowledge on this gun type. It is rifled. No ramrod .It is missing the snaphuance lock or matchlock? Its broken into 4 pieces. At the wrist where the tang bolt goes through and in front of the lock and lastly at the stock. There is a ball stuck 2/3 the way down the barrel. Barrel end is flared. Touch hole is damaged/ repaired.
 

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TC

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Barrel is 35” .oal is 50”. It has a small brass front sight. But behind that is a shallow dovetail.
 

TC

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This photo shows where the rear sight may have been?
 

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ajbennettnc

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TC,
That's a cool find! I'm no expert in anything, but that stock shape and rifled barrel make this a Jezail, which is native to Afghanistan and maybe bordering countries. I'd reckon that the missing lock was a repurposed British musket lock or something similar. Snaphaunces are more typically found on North African guns. Aside from coming from Islamic cultures, lots of stock decorations, and being muzzleloaders, the commonalities between Jezails and other so-called "Camel guns" end, as it seems based on my sources (youtube, posts in this forum, and some internet articles) that Jezails were the only Middle Eastern civilian arms tending to be rifled.
There were also matchlock jezails, but that would have the type of matchlock commonly found in India, where the serpentine mechanism is completely within in the stock.
These were used extensively throughout the 19th century by Afghans fighting British troops, and to useful effect. There have been analogies between the Jezail and the American longrifle, since they are both long, muzzleloading rifles.
There's a good Forgotten Weapons video about one of these on YouTube.
There are other members of this forum who are much more knowledgeable than I about these sort of things. I'm sure one will add to this thread soon.
Best regards,
A.J.
 
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TC

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Thanks Aj! I did see that video last night and a few others to try to learn more about it. The ball in the barrel was not a ball but a hard impacted dirt that went all the way to the breach plug. Took a-lot of effort to clean it all out. Most jezails i have seen so far have been longer barreled. This one was not cut down due to the existing flair at the muzzle. Looks to be about 54 cal. Another question is should i get the 4 pieces glued back together and make it whole again? I would like to display it with my martini henrys.
 
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Well TC you have the real Macoy it looks dead right & yes a Govt or East India company Musket lock might well drop in close enough & they turn up often enough If perchance its the 1818 Bakers series E I Co lock these too turn up .Would I say restore it ? Yes . .Why not if carefully & in keeping . There are lots of dodged up ones about but yours look right to me . Ide restore it in a heart beat .but then I have uncommon tastes , Aji is learning fast good on him !. I wonder what RicK has to say.
Regards . Rudyard
 

TC

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Thanks Rudyard. Next month i am attending the Victorian rifleman shoot and they will be going to international military antiques also known as IMA. The warehouse is open to our group. I may bring this down with me and see if some of the locks fit. What were the chances that jezails were ever fitted with a percussion lock? Have you ever seen this? Here is a lock and a musket listed for sale from ima.
 

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TC

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I have several thoughts/options on what to do with this they are:
1 puzzle the parts together ,wire to a nice board and hang on the wall for display
2 glue the parts back together in the best manner possible and hang on the wall or rack as is.
3 do a finer job repairing and restoring the gun back together find an appropriate lock non working and display
4 restore ,find a working lock. Have the touch hole repaired and barrel relined and shoot it!!
As you can see the lock in the above post was not not cheap. Opinions are welcome. I especially would like your thoughts on what methods /techniques/ materials you would use to join the parts back together. If i were to do that i would of course want it to be strong enough to be functional.
 
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Hi TC

As Rudyard mentions, you have the remains of a genuine Afghan Jazail rifle. The lock and lock plate screws are missing for the likely reason it was canalized for use with another gun, or sold separately for the value of the lock only.
In your case, I would think somewhere between options 1 through 3 might make the most sense. IMHO the rifle is too far gone to be considered a candidate for restoration for a shooter. You can buy a plain, basically complete Jazail for display only for about the same price that IMA wants just for a lock. They show up in auctions all the time.
That said, I've learned that most anything can be done for restoration given enough time, effort, and money being no objects.

The lock mortise on your gun appears to have accommodated more than one lock during it's lifetime (not unusual with these guns). That would also be the likely reason for the different touch hole locations and repairs. The barrel itself could have also been converted to percussion at some point, with the drum/bolster later removed for re-use with a flintlock. LOL The tribes in this region would use and reuse, mix/match all manner of gun parts to make anything that would shoot. Percussion lock Jazails being less common due to the lack and cost of percussion caps tn the region.

Unlike Western styles, gunsmiths in the Middle/Eastern markets would tend to locate their rear sights to the far rear of the breach, and the front sight to the far end of the muzzle. My theory being that many considered their shoulder guns for long range shooting from a stand versus quick point aim. But just a theory.

I'll add some more detail and photos on my next post later today.

Rick
 
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Here are a couple pics of the various British, East India Company locks often found on these guns. Just as often the guns can be found with locally made copies of these British locks, often with crude, spurious marks on the lock plates.

Rick
DSC00370 (Medium).JPG
006 (Medium).JPG
 
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Rick has it covered Getting it shootable would be a very secondary aim but putting it presentable should be the desirum. It's 'Right" so warrants the effort . The shorter than expected aspect is probably down to customer preference that deep a rifleing might just be in escapabley useable not that you'd seek that . Good luck in finding a lock the side nails & Tang nail are readily made to match. . Regards Rudyard
 

TC

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Rickystl, thanks! That was a very informative response. I would like to find a lock for it even if it was non functional just to complete it. I will take your advice not go all out to make this one shoot again. I have had interests in matchlocks flintlocks wheellocks and have never looked twice at jezails, indian, persian arab firearms before now. I would like to learn more and just reviewed the other posts on the forum.
 
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I have several thoughts/options on what to do with this they are:
1 puzzle the parts together ,wire to a nice board and hang on the wall for display
2 glue the parts back together in the best manner possible and hang on the wall or rack as is.
3 do a finer job repairing and restoring the gun back together find an appropriate lock non working and display
4 restore ,find a working lock. Have the touch hole repaired and barrel relined and shoot it!!
As you can see the lock in the above post was not not cheap. Opinions are welcome. I especially would like your thoughts on what methods /techniques/ materials you would use to join the parts back together. If i were to do that i would of course want it to be strong enough to be functional.
Without examining it Ide say go for option 3&1'2 he bore could hardly be worn out freshing might be enough say hello for me at IMA I've not ben there but Ime Rudyard on that Forum too . could have Seen a cap lock hard to say but maybe
Regards Rudyard
 

TC

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Thanks to you too Rudyard. You are a wealth of information.
 
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Happy to oblige, MLF has So much TC & Traditions ect stuff I know absolutely nothing about if hesitate to be rude. But your into my sort of stuff . Maybe its me out of step?( Don't feel too guilty if so)
. Regards Rudyard
 

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Not at all. Im fascinated with all older weapons technology. The function and development of these guns, stock shapes, the reasoning behind their design are intriguing. For me experiencing how they function and shoot draw me in. For example those big fishtail matchlocks can be surprisingly comfortable to fire. My son and i have done experiments firing muskets to see the effects of buck and ball at different ranges. I just watched a neat video of a fellow walking in the mountains with a Jezail discussing its use and tactics.
 
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Not at all. Im fascinated with all older weapons technology. The function and development of these guns, stock shapes, the reasoning behind their design are intriguing. For me experiencing how they function and shoot draw me in. For example those big fishtail matchlocks can be surprisingly comfortable to fire. My son and i have done experiments firing muskets to see the effects of buck and ball at different ranges. I just watched a neat video of a fellow walking in the mountains with a Jezail discussing its use and tactics.
The video sounds interesting I hunted with my Fishtail stocked Kabyle didn't notice it particularly awkward . National views vary but people are mostly about the same design choose where they are. If I must say the Petronel recently made is giveing me fits I think its just too smaller size for me. I gave up the chest idea & am useing it like a Jap matchlock, it is matchlock. With the cheek stock Wheellocks' I grasp the forend and take the recoil like that if a limited thrust is against the cheek & finger gripped guard..All horribly awkward to modern tastes but after a few days hunting it seems perfectly normal as it must have originally . I once had a 10 day hunt in the local ranges & got 7 ferrol goats .walked off two maps as the Crow flies only they don,t bother with mountains .& rivers. .Did a lot of such trips when single & fitter .
Regards Rudyard
 

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Real world testing. Nothing beats that. I may try hunting with my matchlock. It must be enlightening to work with the accouterments that go with these arms. The middle eastern guns and guns of Afghanistan have very different powder flasks and accessories. How are they in use? Anything about them that is an advantage to our muskets and long rifle accouterments ?
 
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Real world testing. Nothing beats that. I may try hunting with my matchlock. It must be enlightening to work with the accouterments that go with these arms. The middle eastern guns and guns of Afghanistan have very different powder flasks and accessories. How are they in use? Anything about them that is an advantage to our muskets and long rifle accouterments ?
I made a stag flask to throw 3 drams suitably carved (Mostly in Alice Springs where I had time ) or used a Simler variant . The 'Scots' got heat flatted cow horns in their taste inc a butt plug of it that had an iron extension plate with the square hole suffice to tighten the jaws of the Cock it being the earlier sort . Most all my pieces have provision for the basic Jag .Ball drawer. spare flints & a vent pick. & all ' Hunting pieces' had holes for quills '. Patch boxes' so called but I call them the tool box's they are & any Snap matchlock got a hole for a wire brush jag, & one deep enough the stub out the glowing cord that And rag suitable. seems all I needed, Did make a wooden Patron for some beyound a small primeing flask . I noted in Cabool a small steelyards type ballance to measure the powder perhaps for cart guns or MLs plus a stone mould offerered .So seems they took some care in loading, I think Rick shows accessories well in his recent posts .
Cheers Rudyard
 
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