Mortimer...

Discussion in 'Flintlock Rifles' started by mhb, May 20, 2019.

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  1. May 20, 2019 #1

    mhb

    mhb

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    At the gun show this weekend, I acquired a Pedersoli Mortimer flinter, complete and in fairly good condition - except: it is missing the barrel. It was cheap, though. So, my question: is there any hope of acquiring a factory barrel for it, or am I going to have to make one? Oh; and the previous owner had filled the butt with lead (!), which is going to be a pain to remove, but which WILL come out of there!
    Any guidance appreciated!

    mhb - MIke
     
  2. May 20, 2019 #2

    Eterry

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    I hope he used lead shot and didn't pour molten lead in it, like someone did to my Lefever double 12.
    It's still in there
     
  3. May 20, 2019 #3

    mhb

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    Well, that's what he did... It's actually better in some respects than using lead shot: shot eventually oxidizes and expands, and I've seen several stocks split in that way - most of them on trap guns.

    mhb - MIke
     
  4. May 20, 2019 #4

    curator

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    At one time there were 12 gauge shotgun barrels available as an accessory but I have not seen one for sale for a long time. You might check with the Flintlocksetc. people, John Beauchamp. IIRC. Another possibility is Lee Shaver (leeshavergunsmithing) who does Pedersoli's warranty work here stateside. It might be possible to order one from the factory. The Mortimer rifle barrel was .54 caliber and has a specially configured "English breech" so no one makes a drop-in replacement AFAIK. You might also search regularly on "evil-bay" or "gum-bonker" for someone parting out their Mortimer rifle to make big bucks. Who knows, you might find the one that was taken off your gun. Great gun, the Mortimer, I would not part with mine.
     
  5. May 20, 2019 #5

    Eterry

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    I have seen a gunsmith's attempt to remove the poured lead and drilled thru the side of the stock, not pretty. Thats why mine still has the lead in it.

    My dad would pour round shot, followed by a wad a paper to prevent rattle, in his model 37 every fall when hunting ducks/geese. Then remove it for quail.
     
  6. May 20, 2019 #6

    mhb

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    Curator:
    Appreciate the input. I'll check with Flintlocks, etc., and Lee Shaver.

    Eterry: Smart man, your dad. I did try to remove the lead at first by grabbing hold of the 'flange' left above the surface of the wood and twisting/pulling: the plug rotated a bit, but the flange broke off. I think my next try will be with a slide hammer dent puller - if I can get the screw deep enough into the plug, I think it may come out. Just as a bit of possibly useful information: I found it easier to drill lead if I coat the tip of the drill with ALOX bullet lube.

    mhb - MIke
     
  7. May 20, 2019 #7

    AlanG

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    Not sure why anyone would buy a gun such as that without knowing the price of a replacement barrel? You can buy replacements- but it's going to cost. My 10 plus year old parts list for the Frontier rifle is 400 plus for the barrel.
     
  8. May 20, 2019 #8

    mhb

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    Several factors at work here: I know that these are decent guns; I could make a replacement barrel, if that proves to be the only option; I am aware of the current prices for the Mortimers - and I paid $50.00 for it... If you know where I can get a replacement for it, please let me know about it!

    mhb - MIke
     
  9. May 20, 2019 #9

    AlanG

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    The sources in "curator's" post can get you one. If he is willing to do the work, sending what you have to Shaver would be worth doing so he could fit it for you.

    Curious to hear how it turns out for you.
     
  10. May 20, 2019 #10

    mhb

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    I've e-mailed Flintlocksetc. and am awaiting a response. I've also asked a friend of mine and of Lee Shaver to contact him about it, too. If a new (non factory original) barrel must be acquired and fitted, I can do that, myself. I'll keep you posted...

    mhb - MIke
     
  11. May 20, 2019 #11

    FishDFly

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    If those places do not work out, try VTI.
     
  12. May 21, 2019 #12

    mhb

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    Thanks for the tip, Fish.

    mhb - Mike
     
  13. May 21, 2019 #13

    FishDFly

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    Good luck, I always wanted a Mortimer, of any type.
     
  14. May 21, 2019 #14

    mhb

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    I received a very prompt reply to my inquiry from Richard Beauchamp (Flintlocks, etc.). He does have the barrel in stock, and it's only $895, plus shipping... I am leaning toward just making the replacement from a full-octagon blank (which I think looks better than the half octagon for a British sporting flint rifle of this vintage). I'll report whatever I decide to do.

    mhb - MIke
     
  15. May 21, 2019 #15

    FishDFly

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    Ouch, at least you found one.

    Richard is nice to do business with.
     
  16. May 22, 2019 #16

    AlanG

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    Curious- does the $895 include the under-rib, pipes etc?

    I would think a full length straight octagon barrel would make for a real heavy rifle no?

    Still, if you only paid $50, even with the factory barrel it would still be a good deal and they certainly are great guns!
     
  17. May 22, 2019 #17

    mhb

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    Since it is a factory replacement barrel, I'd certainly expect it to be complete - at that price, it should be! The factory barrel is apparently 1/2 octagon, with the breech octagon being 1" across the flats - if I make a full octagon barrel of the same length as the factory one (31"), or not more than a couple of inches longer, and in the same .54 caliber, I don't think weight will be excessive.
    At this point, it's still a potential project, and I'm not yet decided on how to proceed, but there is no rush, and I've got projects on my bench that have already been there for a LONG time...

    mhb - MIke
     
  18. May 22, 2019 #18

    mhb

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    Fish:

    VTI responded immediately - in the negative: they don't carry the barrel.

    mhb - MIke
     
  19. May 23, 2019 #19

    Eterry

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    A good friend traded for (stole is more like it) a Pedersoli Mortimer 14 Ga, complete with the half round, half octagon barrel, with the nicest brown job I've seen on a barrel, and the lock with the push bar safety. I've offered him 3xs what he paid... and he won't part with it... he knocked down several dove with it last year.

    Did i mention how much i hate my good friend??? Lol.

    An octagon barrel can be turned at halfway point by a good machinist or smith... or you if you have a good file and some spare time. It would look more "period " i think.

    Btw, I'll make you the same offer... three times what you paid for your Morty.:D
    Et
     
  20. May 23, 2019 #20

    mhb

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    Envy is a terrible thing, but not uncommon.
    When I mentioned the possible option of making a barrel, I was not speaking figuratively: I'm a retired barrel maker, but still have access to all the facilities required to make another one, and there are already .54 caliber reamers and a rifling head, because I made one. The half-octagon profile is not a problem, either - I could make it at the old shop, or in my own. In fact, I'd probably take the easier road and just order a 1" across the flats blank from one of the specialty makers and proceed from there, leaving it full octagon.
    Thanks for your generous offer! If this turns-out to be one of my long-term projects (and I've got stuff on my bench that's been there for at least 15 years, waiting for the spirit to move me), I might take you up on it...

    mhb - MIke
     

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