---UNDERHAMMER THREAD---

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Rifleman1776

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The Col. Saunders (not the chicken guy) Gun Museum at Berryville, Arkansas, there are many underhammer pistols on display. In fact, they are so dominant in the collection one could get the impression that style was the primary ignition on ml pistols. (sadly, the museum is poorly curated and the displays are dismally lighted and yellowed from age and neglect.)
 

zimmerstutzen

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I had one of the most unusual underhammer pistols ever devised. It consisted of an in-line striker that slid back into a drum and nipple on the bottom flat of the barrel, with the nipple pointed forward. I'd like to post pictures, but photobucket is holding them hostage again.
 

Gene L

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I thought Photobucket had reversed their 3rd party sharing policy. I would post a picture of a ML rifle, or try to, but I don't have one.
 

Shedhunter

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Fun post and nice under hammers! I built this one in 99 after thinking about one for years. Don't shoot it much but do take it out once in awhile.
.38 cal. shoots paper patched bullets. Weight, 25 lbs.

 
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Metalshaper

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Skycheif,

My gun was stocked in a maple shotgun butt\fore end set from Tiger Hunt.with horn caps at both ends of the forearm ... wearing a .45 Cal 30"x 1" acf barrel .
The banded action was made in my bud Marlow's shop.. our version of an H&A? The works are in an insert I made in my shop. Double set triggers, internal mainspring, fly on the tumbler. Wooden rib under the barrel, fitted with Banded ramrod thimbles to try and match the frame.. rear sight I made, front one is from the box of parts I had..

Shoots really well!

In actuality, it cud be remade as a single trigger UH. The action is quick enough as a single. But I was once told it couldn't be done and better builders than I had tried and failed.. gauntlet thrown at my feet I guess.. oh n it all fits in 3.625" of length within the frame :grin:

Respect Always
Metalshaper/Jonathan
 

FishDFly

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Some say under hammers have no eye appeal, they need glasses.
 

zimmerstutzen

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unfortunately underhammer actions place the "works" out so far forward that pistols become front heavy. I thought up a design to try to resolve that problem with an underhammer reversed to point rearward.

 

Griz44Mag

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zimmerstutzen said:
unfortunately underhammer actions place the "works" out so far forward that pistols become front heavy. I thought up a design to try to resolve that problem with an underhammer reversed to point rearward.

That would be a real eyecatcher. (Literally!)
Looks like it would be hard on the space between the finger and thumb as well.....
 

zimmerstutzen

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no more than any side lock percussion pistol or revolver, and with a flash cup nearly fool proof. The grip would be channeled to permit the hammer to function between the two halves of the grip and the fingers are protected.
 

Gene L

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I took off my ramrod thimble on my Offhand and promptly lost the screw that holds it on. Does anyone know the specs on this screw?
 

FishDFly

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My Ingrham’s came with 2 piece wood grips. I hollowed out the base of each grip with a dremel tool and added lead fishing weights. After adding the lead to each grip I glued in the weights. Then I glued the grips together so the grip is one piece.

Using body putty (automotive) I started adding a palm swell. You mix the putty and about the time it starts to setup, you flex your hand around to get your hand out. You keep repeating this until your palm is totally supported. You work the palm swell around forward until you have a support for your pinky finger. After the palm swell was finished I did the same thing for a place to rest my thumb on and last I made slight hood over my thumb. When the grip was finished you could see my finger prints in the putty. With this design, you can only grip the pistol one way, it does improve accuracy And consistency in gripping the pistol.

The hammer and nipple is forward of the grip and the trigger finger is protected by the stock. I never have been hurt by cap fragments. With the design of his hammer, there is a shield to stop fragments also getting to your trigger finger.

To help balance the weight he used octagonal barrels.

I see and understand your concept. My only question would be, how would you protect your wrist from cap fragments? Totally enclosed cup on the hammer?

Would the grip need to be a plow handle to stop your hand from riding up the grip?

What about adding a trigger stop?
 

M. De Land

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I think I would modify your design a bit for a mules ear hammer and use windage correction to counter hammer torque.
This would keep the firing mechanism out of the all important gripping of the arm which is more important than the sights used.
 

J-team

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You would end up with a high bore line once you figured how to make clearance above the web of finger and thumb to clear the hammer. Besides, I've always felt that muzzle heavy pistols are better/easier to shoot accurately anyway.
 

azmntman

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Richard Eames said:
Some say under hammers have no eye appeal, they need glasses.
I personally dont like the looks at all. But I would own one if a shooter. And yes, I do need glasses. Bad. And quick (elk in a month).

Just a preferance I guess. Maybe after handling/firing one I would change my mind. Not ugly, just :idunno:
 

Colonial Boy

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That's it, the spring rotates to the side for capping and the trigger is entirely manual; the nose of the trigger is raised in the centre and fits a notch in the head of the hammer/spring.

No idea as to the trigger pull as it's a point and shoot pistol but it's not excessive and is smooth, I haven't fired it since 1986 when the laws were changed and as an antique it does not require registration UNLESS I want to fire it; being as it's no target pistol I avoided the hassle.

I have toyed with the idea of making a shotgun with this action and I guess that as there is really no need for a precise trigger on a field gun, and that one could become used to aiming and just pulling without knowing exactly when it would go bang.

Edit: Just thought that the pull was less than my M10 S&W on double action.
 

Colonial Boy

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[/quote]

I built a Kentucky style long rifle using this design back in around 1969, I used full wood though and consequently had a longer path from nipple to powder, but it didn't seem to make any difference as it went off instantly.
I modified the scear to a shorter set-up with the trigger bearing down on a short lever, pivoted a bit in front of its centre.
The barrel was an American made one (44 inch and .45 cal) that was imported, on spec, by a local gun shop and the wood was a nice piece of fiddleback Queensland maple; it's softer than your maple but is an excellent stock wood.
The wood was a left over piece from a local timber yard, but narrow and when I saw it, I thought "What a waste, that would have made a beautiful stock".

Then the light bulb lit and I 'saw' an underhammers and I went from there!!
 

hanshi

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I've owned an H&A Heritage model underhammer in .45 since the mid 1960s. It has been fired a lot and has killed deer, bobcats and squirrels. Plenty accurate, too. In Fact, the barrel is right up there with the best custom tubes. I like the way it "hangs" when shouldered; it just "feels" old.

A dead trigger guard/spring relegates it to the wall, as of the past few years. It's the only rifle that has ever started a fire in my lap. I love it, though.
 

nhmoose

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At an Auction house in Plainfield NH, Smiths, there are several Hillard under hammers on the block on Labor day.

Great pics but you have to go thru the pages to find them. Auction house is spitting distance from where they were made.

I have no connection to them but love Hillards!
 
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