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Hi indian made guns (again) and gunsmithing

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by Bobsen, Jan 24, 2013.

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  1. Bobsen

    Bobsen Member

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    Hi All
    My Name is as you can guess Bob, and I love all things to do with black powder which is a bit of a problem here in UK as the gun laws are draconian to say the least.
    I've seen on the forum a lot of talk about Indian made muskets, so I thought I would put my penny worth in for those interested.
    I travel quit a bit and have seen for myself some of the Indian makers which is an eye opener to say the least. If theses guys had half the equipment sitting in my shop they would be able to make the finest guns, "you bet"
    I was interested in what steel they used in the barrels and have come to the conclusion it is second-hand hydraulic lines made from cold drawn steel tubing from the many ships being broken up in Bangladesh?? often described by them as (old oil cans).
    They cut this to length and forge it by swaging it to swell the breach end and muzzle if needed. They drive a mandrill into the bore to approximate the bore size then with a simple reamer on a long stem fitted to a electric drill ream the bore.
    Primitive yes but given the skill they get the result, the wood used is teak in the most part and pot luck to how good it might be, to see a guy checker this wood with a sharpened old broken file in a few minutes is all most beyond belief.
    Locks and other parts are hand forged and filed to size, no two parts are identical and all are fitted by hand to one gun.
    Anyone interested in these guns and with the right skill level, could take over were they leave off and finish the parts to a much higher level and produce a good looking weapon.
    now the interesting bit I was offered as many as I wanted for $250 each from a one off or a hundred, posted to UK/USA $50 each.
    I watched as the guy loaded a gun (he asked me to pick any gun stacked against a wall which with a hand drill he drilled the vent hole there and then) with a handful of black powder and two lead balls walked out side and holding it to his shoulder let her go!!! big bang lot of grinning faces and all looked ok ( have to say I kept well out of the way)
    to say the least I was impressed.
    So much so that I paid for a baker rifle there and then this was just before Christmas and the gun will be posted this week
    It is my intention to send the barrel to Birmingham proof house to get it tested and refinish the gun completely, file and finish the brass work to military bright, brown the barrel with artificial twist finish, case harden the standing breach, case harden the tumbler and sear, polish the springs, and internal lock plate, rifle the barrel with seven groves 1/4 turn in 30 inches and re-stain the wood and oil finish.
    mark the gun with all original marks to wood and metal (the only thing it will have other than the original marks will be the modern proof marks)
    Sure looking forward to this project but would like to hear some advice on tuning the flint lock as this is not something I've done before so any help would be appreciated?
    Many thanks and may you all have many years enjoying you hobby
    Bob
    Bobsen is online now Report Post
     
  2. Dave Markowitz

    Dave Markowitz Member

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    Welcome to THR.

    I'm looking forward to a report one you get your gun, and hopefully some pictures.
     
  3. robert garner

    robert garner Member

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    Mad dogs and Englishmen, keeps the world interesting.
    You've set yourself a long and hopefully rewarding task.
    I wish you well,pictures for this type of thread are de rigueur.
    I would save you some time,but hardly any expense and offer
    you a .54 cal. American Long Rifle(semi custom) and all you'd
    have to do to it would be a good cleaning after use, for the low
    low cost of shanghaiing one Piers Morgan, giving him a tee shirt
    "I went to Mexico, and all I got was this T-shirt" (or equivalent)
    and leaving him shoeless on a moor,in a bog or other suitably
    remote venue,sound sporting? lets negotiate.
    robert
     
  4. Bobsen

    Bobsen Member

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    Thanks
    Can't promise anything but If Morgan comes calling Ill keep your suggestions in mind.
    Not sure how to upload pics yet but will sort out when gun arrives.
    And I thought Yanks were mad but your right its mad dogs and Englishman for sure.
    Keep looking
    Bob
     
  5. Bobsen

    Bobsen Member

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    Baker Rifle photo

    This is a photo of the baker rifle from the Indian company as ready to post so at least you get an idea of it
    I hope this works?
     

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  6. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    There are many posts on the India-made guns. Interestingly they may be far closer to the originals than anything out of the US or Italy. That's not always a good thing, but given the primitive tech and the reliance on hand-fitting, the production process is almost pre-industrial and would be very close to how it was done in the 18th century.

    It is possible to blow them up, but it's also possible to blow up Pedersoli guns that cost five times more. I think it comes down to the intended use.
     
  7. Bobsen

    Bobsen Member

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    From what I saw the only thing they have in common is hand made look at a government contract Brown Bess lock from 1790 and you would be forgiven for thinking it had been made on some sort of machine.
    If you look at the photo I've had this built as a commission and paid a lot more for the pleasure.
    But my goal is to create a gun very similar to the contract gun of the 18th century
    As far as I'm concerned this is a set of inexpensive parts compared to custom made parts or guns that will require many hrs of work to bring them up to par and satisfy my requirements.
    I wish to prove that better quality Indian made guns are not that bad if your careful about your choice.
    From what has been said although I was not intending to do so I,will post photos and build stages on this thread from time to time to show how its going
    All comments and helpful advice especially on working on the lock are welcome
    May your flint always spark and your shot hit the spot.
    Thanks for the encouragement and keep it coming
    Bob
     
  8. Steel Horse Rider

    Steel Horse Rider Member

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    If the barrel was made from steel tubing used for high pressure hydraulic lines as you surmised it is probably a lot better quality than the originals and maybe even the modern copies. As someone who was trained as a Tool and Die Maker I am always impressed at the ingenuity of emerging cultures. Reminds me of how this country got its start.....
     
  9. Bobsen

    Bobsen Member

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    Baker Rifle

    There is a video of the Indian factory making guns if I can find the link I will post it here
     
  10. Bobsen

    Bobsen Member

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    http://www.narayansports.com/
    go to the site and then click on face book and look at the videos
    well worth a look and very similar to the place I visited
     
  11. volleyfire

    volleyfire Member

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    As if I don't have enough ways to spend my meager allowance. I have always been lusting after a Baker Rifle thanks to my 'Sharpe's' addiction. Really looking forward to your updates. BTW Bobsen I'm a former student of Hinchingbrooke House.
     
  12. hawkeye74

    hawkeye74 Member

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    These guns have been discussed before. I will repeat what I have said before:

    "BUYER BEWARE

    THEY ARE DANGEROUS. THEY BLOW UP. THEY HAVE HURT PEOPLE. THEY ARE NOT IMPORTED TO BE SHOT BUT ARE DECORATIONS.

    WARN OTHERS THAT YOU ARE SHOOTING A DECORATION SO THEY CAN MOVE AWAY!
     
  13. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Oh let's not start all this again. There are about 25 threads on the topic. We can trade pictures of blown up Pedersolis and blown up India guns all day long. The fact is even a fancy government proof is not a magical ward against kabooms if you do something stupid. The India guns are affordable for most folk, the Italian ones are not. The US made custom ones are even more expensive.
     
  14. hawkeye74

    hawkeye74 Member

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    Right now, gun rights are being attacked due to the fact that mentally ill individuals committed horrible crimes with firearms.

    Lawful users of firearms know the problem is not the gun but a mental health issue.

    You people that persist in using unsafe decorations as firearms will bring the wrong type of attention to the antique weapons we cherish. This will bring unwanted regulation, taxes, etc. Leave these things on the wall where they were meant to be used.

    Cost is not an excuse to put you, your friends and others at risk. Cheap safe firearms can be found if you look. I have bought dozens of USED Italian made firearms for under $400. Then re-sold them to newbies.

    Yes the firearms made to shoot will blow up if improperly loaded or not properly maintained. We are all burdened with living with fools. Do you really want to prove yourself to be one of the fools?
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  15. Bobsen

    Bobsen Member

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    Fools

    You know I always envied yanks free country carry guns etc
    But having read most of what is said about Indian guns. It's always good old USA the spouts the most crap.
    If anŷone can show me the guy who suffered a blow out with a well maintained ,clean,Single loaded,proofed Indian musket I will take it all back put my baker in the metal chomper (when it arrives) and join a monastery for the rest of my life.
    I never heard so much crap from know it alls in my life, if it is proofed by a licenced proof house ( Oh sorry USA don't have one) then it's as safe as any gun ever made and after all there's plenty of well made expensive shotguns burst over the years and some were made in London by the best makers.
    So pull your head out of your butt and make sensible remarks about responsible gun use where ever it's made :banghead:
    Keep up the intelligence I love it
    Bob
     
  16. Bobsen

    Bobsen Member

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    Volleyfire

    Hi vollyfire
    Good to hear from you I will send updates as and when but to dam cold to go outside at the mo hoping by the time the gun arrives here in UK it will be a bit warmer how long ago were you in school here?
    Are you in the UK now
    Bob
     
  17. hawkeye74

    hawkeye74 Member

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    Bobsen:

    You have an advantage we don't with your national proof house. If your Baker passes a British proof house test great!! :D You don't have to do penance in a monastary.:)

    The Indian made pieces in the USA are shipped here as decorations.

    I don't give a damn about where a gun is made. My college room mate for 2 years was Indian from India. What I don't want is to be on a firing line and have a pipe bomb go off near me.

    I would love to buy less expensive GUNS from India. But I don't want them to be decorations, I want a functioning, safe gun.

    The link you posted to narayansports.com is a company (I am told) that will ship their guns direct to the USA as a gun. I will check them out further and might buy from them
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  18. Bobsen

    Bobsen Member

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    Baker rifle

    I will keep everyone informed as we go, even if you don't have a proof house
    You can remove the barrel put twice the recommended charge and two lead balls well seated put it on the ground in an old tyre pointing down range or in an old quarry somewhere safe and with a bit of fuse let it go bang bounce around bit and then check it out if all is sound and not bent or blown it should be fine
    I would not wish anyone to own a pipe bomb if this is a bit worrying
    You could buy the gun from India less the barrel and get new barrel from track the Wolf for 175 bucks it will just drop in wa-la all done and safe
    Nice cheap baker
    Keep it coming don't yer just love it
    God I'm jealous of you guys land of the free and nutty as hell
    Bob
     
  19. robert garner

    robert garner Member

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    Bobsen;
    Get you a ticket to Mex City,head North,if ya tell'em at the border you want to be a Democrat,Bob's your Uncle, you're in.
    robert
     
  20. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Show me the Italian proofed flintlock musket or rifle on the market for under $400. I got a bargain on one for $750 the other day. Standard list price was nearly a grand and it's just an Armi not a Pedersoli. You can find cap and ball revolvers for pretty cheap still, but not Italian flintlocks. And there are many models no Italian firm even makes. Yes they need to be de-farbed but so do the Italians. The US made custom pieces and kits are astronomically expensive these days, so there's not much help there.

    So long as the piece is checked over well and the loads kept sane with black powder only, there should be no problem. The same goes for all of them.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  21. hawkeye74

    hawkeye74 Member

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    Pardon me for omitting the word "Used."
     
  22. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Or used for that matter. Maybe you haven't noticed what the spike in the Euro did to Italian replica prices in the last decade. Please find me some Italian proofed flintlock replicas for under $400 on gunbroker. Let alone a Baker replica. Even a Middlesex India made runs over $500
    http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.aspx?Item=323925773
     
  23. philuk44

    philuk44 Member

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    Hi Bob

    Good to see another crazy Brit on here :)
    Looks like an interesting project you've got going - I'll be interested to see how it turns out.

    Good shooting!

    Phil
     
  24. Bobsen

    Bobsen Member

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    Hi Phill

    Phill
    Yep mads right, but not as mad as our cousins over the pond love em.
    Ill keep putting it on here, stirring it as much as I can
    Im Cambridgeshire?? Anywhere near yourself?
    As you say good shooting
    Bob
     
  25. philuk44

    philuk44 Member

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    Hi Bob

    Bit further north than you - near Newcastle.
    Don't shoot a lot of black powder - got a Ruger Old Army and a Uberti Rogers & Spencer - but it's always fun!

    I'm an ex pistol shooter and shoot mainly Gallery Rifle and historic these days. Get to quite a few competitions and get down to Bisley a few times each year. Maybe see you on the ranges one day ;)

    Phil
     
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