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Velo-dog info/history??

Discussion in 'Firearms Research' started by TdocZ, Jan 10, 2010.

  1. TdocZ

    TdocZ Member

    Would anyone know of a good source(s) for information regarding 1890's velo-dog revolvers? I have an old Belgian model that I would like to learn more about. Thanks.
  2. Oyeboten

    Oyeboten Well-Known Member


    But, start a "Velo-Dog" appreciation Thread once you get some research done.

    I really like 'em, ( though many knock offs or variations and makes of them out there, ) though never owned or shot one, but they are totally cool interesting little Revolvers, and, a cool name, too.

    I believe their intent was for Bicyclists to rebuke aggressive Dogs....

    Usually chambering Shot Shells....some were Center Fire, and or used proprietary Cartridges anyway.
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2010
  3. SDC

    SDC Well-Known Member

    These were produced in a number of centre-fire and rim-fire chamberings, but all fairly small-calibre/low power, and were named "velo-dog" by combining the "velo" of "velocipede" (the French name for "bicycle") with the name of their intended targets, aggressive dogs that tried to attack bicyclists. You can find variations produced in Belgium, France, Spain, Germany, England, Italy, and others, but the primary producer was Belgium. For books, A.B. Zhuk's "Illustrated Encyclopedia of Handguns" is pretty good, as it includes line drawings of an incredible variety of them, and for web research, a good place to start is www.littlegun.be ; this website shows manufacturer markings and company histories for the majority of manufacturers, and specializes in Belgian guns; the company that manufactured your revolver will almost certainly be on this list ( http://www.littlegun.be/arme belge/a a artisans identifies gb.htm ), but it may take a while to track it down. If you can post pictures here, you'll probably also get some good leads. Hope this helps.
  4. Ron James

    Ron James Well-Known Member

    Tdocz, really need pictures. The problem arises in the fact that almost all short barreled { and even long barreled ) Belgium guns are called Velo-Dogs. That is akin to calling all single action revolvers Colts. As stated above the Velo-Dog was chambered in 5.5 MM. A very low pressure cartridge { only slightly more power than a CCI CB Long.}. The purpose was to convince an aggressive dog that they should be somewhere else rather than chewing on your ankle. Those guns chambered in .22, .25ACP and .32 were in fact small personal defence guns. Remember the purpose of the Velo-Dog pistol was not to kill the dog, Belgium farmers owned shotguns, and if you shot their dog and killed it, well a shotgun blast would be following you. BTW 5.5 MM Velo-Dog ammo is still available. J&G out of Prescott, AZ. is one who had it in stock.
  5. Jim K

    Jim K Well-Known Member

    White & Munhall say the 5.6mm Velo-Dog fired a 41-45 grain bullet at a MV of 660 fps out of a 2" barrel (actual test). That puts it in the .22 Long category, not a super-power stomper, but nothing to stand in front of and a performance that would definitely result in the demise of a dog hit in the right (or wrong) place. So it was not intended just to sting Rover, but to do him serious harm.

    But it is correct that a Velo-Dog revolver is one chambered for the Velo-Dog cartridge, not just any small European revolver of the late 18th or early 19th century. The true Velo-Dog revolver is distinguished by its long cylinder, necessitated by the long Velo-Dog cartridge, whose case was 1.141-1.182", longer than the .22 WMR.

  6. Ron James

    Ron James Well-Known Member

    You may very well be right in reference to the 5.5 ( or 5.75) Velo Dog being very close to the performance of the 22 Long . The factory specs of the 5.5, 650 FPS with a 45 FMJ. However, the CCI CB Long also pushes out a 29 grain projectile at 786 { CCI ] while the 29r. grain CCI Long from 6 " barrel is rated at 1031 FPS. Now the argument can be that the mass is greater in the 5.5 and henceforth closer to the .22 Long that the CB Long ( which BTW will also drop a dog if the shot is positioned well ) but my personal experience with the 5.5, from 25 feet against a 1/4 sheet of plywood, almost every shot "stuck" and did not penetrate the wood fully. This was a number of years ago and unfortunately I no longer have the little gun but the memory sticks . I think this is a case ( as with how powerful the 41 rim fire is ) that a statement was made, repeated over and over until it became fact, with out any serious research done. It would be interesting if someone had the firearms , ammo, time and inclination to do some factual testing . I would be very interested in the results. Is the 5.5 closely compatible to the 22 Long , Long Rifle , or the CB Long. Don't know, been wrong before and I know I'll be wrong again in the future. :D
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2010
  7. TdocZ

    TdocZ Member

    These pics aren't the best quality but they do show the "crown" RO stamp between the side barrel and cylinder... Thanks for the feedback guys!

    Attached Files:

  8. Ron James

    Ron James Well-Known Member

    It is impossible to tell the caliber from pictures, but if I were to take a WAG, based on the perceived size of the barrel and cylinders, instead of a Velo-Dog you have a small folding trigger Belgium self defence revolver. Made by the boat load for sale in Europe by any number of small cottage type industries. Most of these are unsigned by the makers.
  9. TdocZ

    TdocZ Member

    Here are some comparison pics, with a Beretta 21-A. The "velo-dog" in question is about the same size as than the Bobcat but the land-width is about 7.6mm. Caliber is smaller than .32 acp (maybe closer to .30") but definitely not velo-dog caliber either :(. If it's not a velo-dog, I don't know how to date it...

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jan 13, 2010
  10. Jim K

    Jim K Well-Known Member

    None of the revolvers pictured have cylinders long enough to be true "Velo-Dog" revolvers. They are probably chambered for one of several cartridges in vogue in that period, including .32 ACP and .25 ACP. Without chamber measurements, it would be guesswork.

    Some of you might remember the story of how the late Charles Askins, Sr., figured out a way to enter center fire matches with a Colt Woodsman. He had the gun altered to center fire, then cut 5.6 Velo-Dog cartridges down to .22 LR length and loaded lead bullets. When the NRA officials (trying to keep revolvers competitive) ruled that the rear sight had to be ahead of the hammer, he moved the sight and soldered it on. IIRC, he won one match, then they ruled center fire matches had to use at least .32 calliber.

    Too bad in a way, but then his goal was to scam the system, not to compete fairly in shooting ability.

    Here is a pic of the gun:



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