Help with Bulnderbuss ID and RUST!

Discussion in 'Smoothbore' started by Kevin Brewer, Oct 7, 2019.

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  1. Oct 7, 2019 #1

    Kevin Brewer

    Kevin Brewer

    Kevin Brewer

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    Hi All, this is my First post so I apologize for any Faux-pas I may be committing!
    I picked up this brass Blunderbuss a while ago and well, it was a purchase I kinda regretted on the drive home, but what can you do..
    It is stamped 1873, mechanism works. It has the Name LOTT on the side of the lock. Question one - is is it original / of value, and should I try to clean it up..

    Unfortunately the gun is covered in a varnish of some kind, wood/steel and brass, and even some paint like (fake tarnish) on the barrel. Rust has started to appear under the varnish and on unvarnished spots. For the record, I have swords and bayonets and Medals etc, all in the same room and location and they have no rust - I don't know why this fella decided that oxidation was the way to go?

    For the surface rust I was thinking a light brush with a brass / copper brush just to remove the rust. What about the rust under varnish - should I remove the varnish chemically and then brush? Any Ideas / suggestions?


    with Thanks

    Kevin

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  2. Oct 7, 2019 #2

    ppg1949

    ppg1949

    ppg1949

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    KB, welcome to the forum. I can not help you but I do think it looks cool. You may want to try and measure the bore. While I can't help you, there are many many knowledgeable people on this forum willing to help. So be patient someone will answer you.
     
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  3. Oct 8, 2019 #3

    DaveC

    DaveC

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    Is the "LOTT" marked lock plate manufactured by D. Pedersoli, I wonder?
     
  4. Oct 8, 2019 #4

    springfield art

    springfield art

    springfield art

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    Looks like a replica; could just strip it and remove the rust. Would have to see if the barrel is an actual shooter, though. Will be fun to see what other guys post about it. Neat project gun!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 8, 2019
  5. Oct 8, 2019 #5

    springfield art

    springfield art

    springfield art

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    The 'engraving' on the lock plate appears to be "cast in", like a replica. I've not seen this one before, nice find! Post us if it's an actual shooter or just a decorator.
     
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  6. Oct 8, 2019 #6

    TFoley

    TFoley

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    Frawk. It's a wall-hanger, I'd bet my remaining pension. The wood is far to coarse for any genuine firearm - believe it or not, only prime quality wood was used in the making of the stocks of guns in the Western World. The bevelled-edge lock is interesting, but the Brown Bess-like butt-end of the stock and poor-grade carving around the lock, especially at the back end, is not typical of the real thing.

    Just my $0.02.
     
  7. Oct 8, 2019 #7

    cositrike

    cositrike

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    I believe it’s a repro, but looks like it was designed to be a shooter. I’d check that it’s not loaded first. Then strip all the crap off. Oil the wood. Take the lock out and clean/ oil it. Get the lacquer off the brass. Maybe take the barrel out. Should have a screwed in steel Breech plug. See if it has any identifying marks on the barrel. See where you go from there
     
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  8. Oct 8, 2019 #8

    Eric Krewson

    Eric Krewson

    Eric Krewson

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    I would give the lock a soak in Evaporust to clean it up.
     
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  9. Oct 8, 2019 #9

    curator

    curator

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    +1 on Evaporust treatment for the lock. This may be an Indian-made replica judging from the wood. There should be markings on the underside of the barrel. Regardless, check for a load and consider unscrewing the breech plug once you are sure it is not loaded. These brass-barreled guns usually have a steel breech plug and with black powder fouling there can be 'galvanic corrosion" with the internal threads. If they are on good shape, clean them thoroughly and coat them with a good anti-seize compound before re-installing the plug. Though not particularly useful these days, a Blunderbus can be a hoot to shoot. It was the premiere personal protection firearm 200 years ago.
     
  10. Oct 8, 2019 #10

    ppg1949

    ppg1949

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    Keep in mind that EvapoRust will take it down to bare metal so you may want to blue it afterwards. If it's going to be a wall hanger, I would just leave it as bare metal.
     
  11. Oct 9, 2019 #11

    Kevin Brewer

    Kevin Brewer

    Kevin Brewer

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    Thanks everyone for the replies, from what everyone has said and upon reflection - I think it is a replica too. My spidey sense went off when I bought it, but chose to ignore it. Another life lesson under the belt! Now it's a take apart and clean it up project, always a sliver lining. Nothing in the barrel I can see light through the firehole, so won't take my head off .
     
  12. Oct 14, 2019 #12

    rickystl

    rickystl

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    Hi Kevin. Welcome to the Forum.

    The replica blunderbuss you have is actually a pretty rare item today. It's either Italian or Spanish made and was marketed by Navy Arms back in the 1970's, and listed in their catalog. Dixie Gun Works also carried them for a while as well as spare parts. One of these was actually briefly used in one of the mountain man movies back in the 1970's. The name escapes me at the moment, but included actors Brian Keith and Charlton Heston. The gun was in fact made to shoot. For some reason, the gun was only made for 2-3 years I think (?) Which would account for it's rarity today. So, I would say you have a nice find and well worth cleaning, inspecting, etc. to bring her back to shooting condition. As Curator mentions, there is not a lot of usefulness with a blunderbuss today. But they are sure fun to shoot. Congratulations on a nice find.

    Rick
     
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  13. Oct 14, 2019 #13

    shortstart

    shortstart

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    Actually, the Lott lock I have is on a Miroku Bess. Japanese repto
     
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  14. Oct 15, 2019 #14

    Kevin Brewer

    Kevin Brewer

    Kevin Brewer

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    Yup stamped "made in Italy" on backside of Lock. I'll take the silver lining that it's rare for a circa 1970's replica - bastards even stamped the top of barrel at the plug with 1873. Lesson learned! Anyone have any idea what a price this guy would be worth?


    fool and his money are easy parted....
     
  15. Oct 15, 2019 #15

    SDSmlf

    SDSmlf

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    Here are a couple of photos out of the 1990 Dixie catalog with a few dimensions and descriptions you may be able to match up with your gun.
    upload_2019-10-15_17-57-32.jpeg
    upload_2019-10-15_17-58-7.jpeg
     
  16. Oct 15, 2019 #16

    springfield art

    springfield art

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    Probably not a whole lot; about $150? Let's see what the other guys say?
     
  17. Oct 15, 2019 #17

    Boatncamp

    Boatncamp

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    Oh, I bet you could get between $300 and $400 as is and closer to $500 if it was cleaned up a bit.
    They go pretty quick on the auction sites.

    Woody
     
  18. Oct 17, 2019 #18

    springfield art

    springfield art

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    Interesting! Thanks. I'd never seen one or even noticed them in the Dixie catalog even thought I've been getting it for many years. Good to know!
     
  19. Oct 17, 2019 #19

    Artificer

    Artificer

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    Hi Kevin and Welcome to the Forum,

    Unless those black streaks on the barrel are paint, they are probably caked on black powder residue. I might imagine inside the bore is the same? The good news is that if it is black powder residue and since the barrel is bronze/brass, it will come off by scrubbing with a Bronze Brush and using hot/soapy water. Been there, done that, got the T Shirt quite a few times. :D

    As to the "Crusty Rust" on the lock, it certainly is best to begin with the Evaporust (SP?) others have mentioned earlier to stop the rusting/oxidation. Then you have to make a decision on whether you wish to file/sand/polish the lock to make it look better, though you probably won't be able to completely rid the lock of some of the pitting.

    Unfortunately I have to sheepishly admit I had to do that as well on my old Brown Bess Carbine I shattered the wrist on and then didn't fix it or even clean it properly for almost 20 years - until I "got back in reenacting the 18th century." At that point I was so embarrassed I had not already cleaned and fixed it, I decided to do so even though the number of hours I put into it was not economically viable. I figured I owed it to the Bess, as it had served me well in Northwest Trade Gun competition back in the mid/late 1970's and putting a British Black Watch Uniform was already enough of a cash outlay at the time. No one would have believed how it looked before I fixed and sanded/polished it, when they saw it after it was done.

    If you think you might like to make the lock look better, I'm sure myself and others can give you tips on how to do it.

    Gus
     
  20. Nov 5, 2019 #20

    ghunter

    ghunter

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    Try electrolysis to gently remove the rust and then fine sandpaper in the 5000 range.
     

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