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anyone know anything about boxlock pistols

Discussion in 'Firearms Research' started by paintballdude902, Jan 24, 2013.

  1. paintballdude902

    paintballdude902 Well-Known Member

    im pretty sure they are either belgian or french. beginning to lean towards french, partially because i dont see an ELG mark and also because they were purchased at the paris flee market(mid 50s). they are percussion cap, boxlock, octagon twist barrels. from what ive found they will date from the 1830s till the mid 1860s

    any info would be appreciated

    better pics, hopefully with markings, will be in tomorrow from my old man.

    Last edited: Jan 24, 2013
  2. SDC

    SDC Well-Known Member

    French or Belgian, they should be marked with proofs somewhere on the barrels; the two most common French proofs are a crown or crossed palm fronds.
  3. paintballdude902

    paintballdude902 Well-Known Member

    update with better pictures

    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  4. Legion489

    Legion489 member

    Off hand I would say British, a muff gun. A muff was a hand warmer and people carried small handguns in them to keep the scum at bay. Such as when you were attacked by a crackhead, it was considered a good thing to get rid of them, unlike now. I can't access your photos in your last post, but there seems to be a proof mark in front of the receiver in the first set of photos, but it is too grainy to see.
  5. paintballdude902

    paintballdude902 Well-Known Member

    ill upload them into another source. i just noticed how large they are without being resized anyways

    any advice to help preserve them. i dont have a ton a experience with guns older than 1900.

    i was thinking a light oiling on all the metal and some linseed or tung oil on the grips. value isnt an issue, once the old man passes they go to me and i wont be selling them. that and i know the value isnt huge
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  6. Jim K

    Jim K Well-Known Member

    Those grips are definitely French or at least in the French style. They are almost certainly not English. Proof was not mandatory in France until 1868, so the absence of proof (or the use of private proof marks) would be expected.

    Nice little guns.

  7. Bobsen

    Bobsen Well-Known Member

    Box lock pistols

    In my humble opinion these are typical of the type of pistol made in Belgium and sold by the thousands through out Europe from about 1840 to 1860.
    Described as a muff or waistcoat pistol they were often sold by a retailer who sometimes put his name on them? They look as if they were ordered from the retailer with a finer finish and better wood than factory finished ones.
    They could have been sold in the white to a Paris retailer hence the finer finish.
    If they had been sold in Great Britain they would have been proofed so my guess is they never passed through the English gun trade and always remained in Europe
    They are a very nice pair of the type and could have been sold as a pair and remained together ever since.
    Not much to offer but without handling them is is difficult to be certain
    Hope this is useful

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