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Poorly Assembled Brown Bess Lock

Muzzleloading Forum

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Nov 1, 2018
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It’s been a few years since I’ve started assembling locks from castings set, I’ve moved forward with advice and guidance from other gunmakers and have started forging my own springs and scratching making parts and have been assembling and fixing locks for folks.

I’ve assembled and repaired many brown bess locks, Rifle shoppe, Indian, Pedersoli’s, miroku etc.

Brown Bess locks in my opinion, are of the easier locks to assemble with the 1728 being the hardest due to the single bridle pan.

This 1724 Brown Bess Lock was sent to me recently and was assembled very poorly, so poor that the lock does not hold on halfcock.

Interesting Enough the Tumbler’s halfcock notch was ground away and the full cock notch replaced it with a new full cock notch about 2mm absolve it, i can only assume this was done to increase the lock’s energy due to a lame mainspring that was over stoned.

The frizzen is located and drilled very poorly.

The Bridle wasn’t located correctly, an attempt was made to try to offset the screw holes with need files, not a good idea, best to weld up the holes are start over.

The sear screw was grilled about 3mm too high, which is a head scratcher for me because it the easiest screw to locate in the project, it’s marked by the engravings…. It goes here !

The tumbler arbor as also over filed making the flintcock very unstable, an attempt was made by peening the edges for a tighter fit. Best fix is to drop a small bead or two in the flintcock and start over from scratch and refit.

Sear spring was located too high by about 2mm.

Frizzen screw was not shouldered to the plate leaving a significant gap between the frizzen cover and pan (also not shimmed before drilling the tap).

Oddly the pan and bolster has a weld around it, so I’m assuming the person who assembled the lock has the ability to weld, but chose to not correct significant mistakes.

Lots of welding repairs and new casting parts needed.


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