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Anders Lindkvist




Location: Sweden
Joined: 11 Aug 2004

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PostPosted: Mon 08 Sep, 2008 2:31 pm    Post subject: What to do with a Percussionmodified Brown Bess musket?         Reply with quote

Some time ago I bought a musket just for the fun of it, later after some research it turned out to be a english Brown bess that has been modified from flintlock to percussion. The swedish armies was supplied with english rifles in the late 1700, early 1800. Some of the were converted later on, this could be one of those. My examples i one of the late versions of the Brown bess, second part of the 18th C. Its missing its original ramrod and a screw for the barreltang. Otherwise the condition is ok.

But, my question is, should I convert it back to flintlock? Perhaps look for a original look to replace the current one? Should I avoid a reproductionlock? It would be somewhat interesting to make it more original. Changing locks is not a permanent operation, its possible to switch back.

Im no real expert on this so please give me your thoughts.


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M. Eversberg II




Location: California, Maryland, USA
Joined: 07 Sep 2006
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PostPosted: Mon 08 Sep, 2008 2:43 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You *could* give it to me Happy.

But in seriousness, I'd keep it as-is. It represents a particular piece in history, and to me is more valuable that way.

M.

This space for rent or lease.
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Tue 09 Sep, 2008 7:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Is BB hardware interchangeable? I assumed they were still using individual craftsmen for the final fitting of each part due to a lack of mechanized production. Could be that a replacement flint lock would be a near-fit but would still need some filing or removal of wood. That could cause you some grief. The drum could be another potential problem. Do those screw into the vent hole of the BB? If so, you'd need more than just the lock--you'd need the proper vent liner for flint--possibly harder to find. If the flint was originally just bored straight into the barrel I assume the percussion conversion required re-boring that hole to a larger diameter. I don't know, though. This could be more than a matter of removing a few screws.

EDIT: Just found this bit of info on the site of a BB reproduction maker:

"Typically only the better quality London made guns were factory fitted with vent liners, but nearly all flint guns were later fitted with vent liners, after the vent hole in the barrel became worn from flash erosion, corrosion, or the aggressive use of a vent pick."

-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Lin Robinson




Location: NC
Joined: 15 Jun 2006
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PostPosted: Tue 09 Sep, 2008 5:31 pm    Post subject: Re: What to do with a Percussionmodified Brown Bess musket?         Reply with quote

Anders Lindkvist wrote:
Some time ago I bought a musket just for the fun of it, later after some research it turned out to be a english Brown bess that has been modified from flintlock to percussion. The swedish armies was supplied with english rifles in the late 1700, early 1800. Some of the were converted later on, this could be one of those. My examples i one of the late versions of the Brown bess, second part of the 18th C. Its missing its original ramrod and a screw for the barreltang. Otherwise the condition is ok.

But, my question is, should I convert it back to flintlock? Perhaps look for a original look to replace the current one? Should I avoid a reproductionlock? It would be somewhat interesting to make it more original. Changing locks is not a permanent operation, its possible to switch back.

Im no real expert on this so please give me your thoughts.



Don't do anything to it. You mentioned that these guns were bought by the Swedish armies and modified to percussion, so that is the correct configuration for this gun. From the shape of the lock plate and wood around the lock, I suspect this is an India pattern Brown Bess, made some time around 1800. It will be quite difficult to reconvert this one to flint because of the bolster for the nipple, which has been sweated onto the barrel. Finding an original replacement lock will also be difficult and if one is located it is likely to cost more than the gun is worth.

Guns that have been coverted from one ignition system to another, IMHO, should be left alone. The conversion is nearly always a part of the gun's history and reconverting amounts to falsifying of its history, no matter how innocently done. You have an interesting piece there and the best thing to do is clean it, very lightly with an oily cloth, removing only surface dirt, then hang it on the wall.

Lin Robinson

"The best thing in life is to crush your enemies, see them driven before you and hear the lamentation of their women." Conan the Barbarian, 1982
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