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Teddydog

32 Cal.
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Mar 4, 2013
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Just received this today and I'd like to get some overall opinions. I don't think there is any doubt about it being real, but I am wondering if any experts see things that have been "messed with" over the past 161 years.

Springfield Model 1861 Rifle (or Rifle Musket), dated 1862.

The rear of the barrel has the V P "Eagle" viewing mark and very faint "62" on top. The "18" that should be there just isn't visible with the "6" being almost gone and the "2" easily seen. Thus it appears the barrel and lock match.

The stock is solid and I have not seen any cracks. However, it may have been sanded long ago as there are no signs of cartouches on the left flat or behind the trigger guard. Both sides of the butt have some "custom initials" carved, also apparently long ago. I say the stock may have been altered long ago because it has that very "old finish" vibe of US military weapons.

The lock is very strong in both half- and full-cock. The nipple cone is broken off flush with the square section and as is usual there is quite a bit of old pitting around the nipple, bolster and rear of the barrel from corrosive residue.

The bore is mostly an unknown as of now, though it is rusty at the bore and swallows a Minie ball. My drop-light batteries are dead, but replacements are due today.

Anything helpful would be, um, helpful? Also a referral to any other sites with lots of knowledge about these old Civil War guns would be appreciated.

Here are the pics I could get tonight... The light in my office sucks except with full sunlight to bounce off the blinds.

1861Spring_right_full.jpg


1861Spring_lock.jpg


1861Spring_left_flat.jpg


1861Spring_bolster.jpg


1861Spring_muzzle.jpg



Thanks for looking!

rob
 
I agree with Trot. In addition, I'm suspicious of at least the nipple bolster, which appears to have a very different finish. I suspect a change in parts at some point. Lack of a cartouche is concerning but the sanding may be the cause.

May I suggest that you post it on civilwartalk.com. It's easy and free to register and has some very qualified people who will analyze it accurately. You will want better photos.
 
Try the N-SSA website bulletin board, www.n-ssa.net. Tons of of info there. Fill the barrel with Evapo Rust and let it sit for a few days before you attack the barrel and nipple. If it's in bad shape you can send the barrel to Bobby Hoyt to be relined. You won't be sorry. 717-642-6696. If your primary focus is having a shooter, I wouldn't be concerned about the stock being sanded.
 
I agree with Trot. In addition, I'm suspicious of at least the nipple bolster, which appears to have a very different finish. I suspect a change in parts at some point. Lack of a cartouche is concerning but the sanding may be the cause.

May I suggest that you post it on civilwartalk.com. It's easy and free to register and has some very qualified people who will analyze it accurately. You will want better photos.
The bolster is an integral part of the forged barrel.
 
The bolster finish matches the barrel perfectly, as one might expect. Looking at it closely by the lock plate, it seems that the lock was maybe cleaned more than the barrel and bolster.

I did buy this to shoot so I'm hoping the bore is decent without relining, but will go that route if necessary.

I signed up for CivilWarTalk last night, but am still waiting for administrative approval to post.

Thanks so far.

rob
 
These muskets were very well made. A reline and cleanup by the right person will ADD value to your gun. I’m jealous!!!
 
If it were mine (wish it were) I would first take it down. Before tackling the bore scrubbing give the stock a wipe down with boiled linseed oil on a cloth and set aside to soak in a bit and then wipe off the excess and let dry. Now you can focus on the bore while the stock pretties up. If the barrel is sent away for reline use that time to repeat the boiled linseed oil process so your stock's wood is nicely oiled when you get the barrel back. The BLO will help negate some of the previous cleaning. Just give it time and multiple treatments. A spot where I removed a painted rack number on a GI stock and did the BLO treatment only 37 years ago can't be told from the original WW2 finish now 😅 Good luck and nice rifle by the way.
 
I fail to see anything that would indicate it was built of parts. Everything looks correct to me.

The inspector's marks can be difficult to see on an original stock and I suspect they were removed when the stock was sanded.

The muzzle is battered and that can be repaired by chucking it in a lathe and removing about 1/8th. inch. After that I would clean the rust from the bore (Evaporust for me), replace the nipple and go shooting. You might be surprised by the results. If I were going to skirmish with it and I would if it were mine, the barrel would go directly to Hoyt for a reline without ever touching it.
 
Looking at the area behind the nipple, the metal is corroded away, wood is not, wood would be burned away with that much corrosion of the metal.
Corrosion of the bolster area does not match that of the lock.
wear on the lock does not match the hammer, and nothing matches the conditon of the barrel.
Screw heads are all buggerd up to differant degrees but none are buggered the same. (people useually dont use differant screw drivers for each screw, they just use the wrong screw driver on all the screws)

So all these things scream differant parts from differant firearms.
Building guns from original parts is very common in the N-SSA and was also common in Bannermans.
 
The bolster finish matches the barrel perfectly, as one might expect. Looking at it closely by the lock plate, it seems that the lock was maybe cleaned more than the barrel and bolster.

I did buy this to shoot so I'm hoping the bore is decent without relining, but will go that route if necessary.

I signed up for CivilWarTalk last night, but am still waiting for administrative approval to post.

Thanks so far.

rob
I would remove the barrel, keep the lock and stock, and buy a new barrel for it. Those old locks are far superior to the replica locks. I would then use the musket for everything, from reenacting, to hunting, then when it becomes time to hang it up on the wall, I would reinstall the original barrel.
 
I would remove the barrel, keep the lock and stock, and buy a new barrel for it. Those old locks are far superior to the replica locks. I would then use the musket for everything, from reenacting, to hunting, then when it becomes time to hang it up on the wall, I would reinstall the original barrel.
He’d be looking at around $600.00 plus shipping, start to finish for a new barrel. A reline by Hoyt would run around $225.00 plus shipping and shoot like a dream.
 
He’d be looking at around $600.00 plus shipping, start to finish for a new barrel. A reline by Hoyt would run around $225.00 plus shipping and shoot like a dream.
But that is what I would do, we are not talking about economics here, we are talking about saving the original barrel for posterity untouched. I once had the chance to buy a original charliville musket at a very reasonable price, but I did not do it. If I had, I would have given it the same treatment I had described for this gentleman's Springfield.
 
1700834203242.png

If the entire barrel is not replaced, the wood behind the breach/bloster will just wear away from the spark of the caps. Which is just one reason I say its a parts gun. With that amount of corroded metal at the breach/bolster there is no way the wood would still be there, it would have just burned from the sparks, flame and heat of the caps going off.

Have Dan Whittacre make you a whole new barrel for it, he makes the correct barrel with the correct 3 land and groove progressive depth rifleing.
His barrels are very know in the N-SSA.
 
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I got new batteries for my drop-in bore light and it looks really good! It is hard to get good bore pics, but here is one showing a section in focus. The entire bore looks like this with just a couple of places like shown with some roughness, but overall looking quite good I think.

1861Spring_bore.jpg


Looks shootable to me!

Rob
 

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