Making a hammer & tumbler for a Model 1817 Common Rifle

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dd832

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I bought this antique rifle more than a decade ago. The hammer was missing from the rifle and I suspected the tumbler was damaged too. When I got it I saw the tumbler was broken off and that's when I put it I put it into a longrifle sock and into the corner it sat. This is what it looked like when I received it:
IMG_0134.JPG

this is the inside view of the lock area:
IMG_0137a.jpg
You can see that this rifle was never a flintlock because there is no touch hole in the side of the barrel, but was made originally as a percussion gun. On converted guns there is a brass pan that is cut off and a brass insert put into the pan trough. This gun has no markings on the plate and there is no filled in brass pan on the lock plate. The barrel tang is stamped 1844.

About a month ago I decided to make a new tumbler for the lock and a new hammer for it too. I turned a new tumbler and over about 2 weeks made a suitable replacement. Then I printed out a lock on my printer and reduced it to size. I cut a piece of steel about 5" x 2-1/2" x 1-1/2" and transferred the design on to it. I've been cutting, shaping and welding on this piece and have wound up with this:
IMG_0131a.jpg
IMG_0129a.jpg

later, Mike
 
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dd832

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This is what it looks like now:
IMG_0121a.jpg
IMG_0123a.jpg

I bought a nice ramrod from Butch's Antique Gun Parts for it since the original was long gone.

Apparently I made the hammer slightly too short when I reduced the original print and had to weld metal onto the nose.
IMG_0126a.jpg

But here is an original conversion with a similar look -
DSC00334a.jpg

later, Mike
 

dd832

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"I see a business opportunity in your future......"

I don't think so. I've looked for years for a replacement hammer with no luck, you'd think they would show up on ebay because almost all the flintlock 1817's for sale are re-converted to flintlocks from percussion. So I made a percussion one from scratch and it was a bugger to do.

Mike
 

dd832

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I do plan on shooting the rifle. I believe the hammer snapped the end of the tumbler off fairly early on in its career. It has very little wear and the muzzle shows a good bore (lite rust) with 7 grooves. I have to unbreech it and see what it looks like first though.
 

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