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dropping block plans/blueprints or patents (Read 3891 times)
bonny
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dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
May 21st, 2012 at 8:07pm
 
Hello , i am a new member. i have lurked here for a long time and finally decided to join. I have a general interest in old british victorian dropping block rifles such as the westley richards and webleys and of course the farquharson gibbs. I have worked in engineering for most of my adult life doing all types of small tool making , fitting , lathe and general machine work and also working in a marine engineers welding and fabricating. i recently acquired a very good quality british made horizontal and vertical milling machine, i already have a fairly large lathe and would love to attempt to build a dropping block action purely for the fun of it.
I know there are books of plans available such as the de hass etc , but to me they simply don't appeal , they just don't have the looks or class of the old british designs.   
Would anyone have a design or set of detailed drawings for any of the old rifles ? they are all over a hundred years old now so must be public domain , i have searched google patents etc but have not found anything.
I don't really intend to make an entire rifle as i would be breaking the law where i live.
thanks.
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james a pickup
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Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #1 - May 21st, 2012 at 9:09pm
 
I made drawings and prints for the Winchester High Wall, Remington Rolling Block, Ballard, Sharps Side hammer, and my Favorite,the Hepburn.I donated them to the ASSRA and the sets are available for $10 by the arciveist.These drawings have no tolerences, as none are needed for "Tool Room jobs".These were made to be sold with the castings(no longer available).
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SA Noel McC
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Calgary, Alberta, Alberta, Canada
Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #2 - May 21st, 2012 at 9:22pm
 
Hi There
I have a complete set of drawings for the 1885 Winchester High wall.
I can email you a set for $25 bucks if you like.
My email is sa_noelmcc@yahoo.ca
I have almost built one from these drawings and they have all the dimensions and have some of the early drawings and new auto cad ones as well.
Let me know
Noel
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noel.mcc930 sa_noelmcc@yahoo.ca  
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bonny
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Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #3 - May 26th, 2012 at 6:49pm
 
thanks for the offers guys, but i am really after an old british design , the main reason for this is the british makers made the rifles by hand where as the american makers tooled up and mass produced their rifles, so i reckon they would be harder to make. i have just bought a ruger no.1 rsi so i can play with this for a while anyway.
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Chuckster
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Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #4 - May 26th, 2012 at 11:27pm
 
Martini Belgium had web site which showed patents for Martini, Field, and Westley Richards among others, but I can't seem to make it work. http://www.Paginatitel.mht
Do have copies, E-Mail and I will send what I have. Think you will find British actions generally more complex than American.
Chuck
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harry_eales
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Aw heck, vegetable stew,
AGAIN.

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County Durham, Great Britain
Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #5 - May 27th, 2012 at 3:28am
 
Hello Bonny,

Nearly 50 years ago I decided I wanted a single shot sporting rifle based on a falling block action. I already had items like the .577/450 Martini-Henry Rifle in almost mint condition and a Snider Rifle as well as double barrelled .577 big game rifle by E.M Reilly and Co, but I wanted a Single Shot sporting rifle. Not being able to find anything in my pay grade I decided the next best thing was to build a copy of one myself. But where to get the plans. After a bit of digging I managed to get the addresses of all the British based gunmakers still in business, and wrote to them all asking for plans or photocopies. Those that wrote back all said the same thing, 'We don't have plans'.

Today I know why, most of them bought in actions from other makers and very few made the whole rifle from scratch. In many cases parts were bought in and merely polished and assembled, admittedly to high standards. The great majority of British Single Shot sporting rifle actions were made in either Birmingham or in Belgium. See Wal Winfers 6 volumes on these rifles.

Patent Drawings are not reliable they are not necessarily to scale and may differ considerably from the production model. All they do is give you an idea of the mechanism. I have never seen one of these drawings with a dimension on them. The best method is to find someone who owns such a rifle, strip it down and make your own plans. It's the hard way to do it, but it's the only way it can be done. Sorry.

I gave up on trying eventually and settled for an American Single Shot that is well on the way to being finished. You may well have to make some of your own tooling and devise methods for making some machining cuts as the original machines that may have been specially made to do a operation, are no longer to be found.

Try this URL for MartiniBelgiums website :-
http://users.telenet.be/Gert.Claes1/index.html
Look at the bottom of the pages to find the 'Main Index' page and enjoy.

Harry
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« Last Edit: May 27th, 2012 at 3:37am by harry_eales »  
 
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QuestionableMaynard8130
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Berrien Springs, MI, USA
Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #6 - May 29th, 2012 at 7:17am
 
At Etna Green this past weekend, Steve Earle had the beginnings of a new Brit action he is working up; but I disremember which one. Steve creates his own patterns by studying originals and developing his CAD and CNC programming from them.  At least that is how he did the Frank Wesson long range and Mid-range actions.  If I recall past conversations with him correctly he wound up "averaging" some of the specs because the originals were far from exact duplicates.
I believe that he said he would possibly be back for the Summer shoot.  If so, and if you can make it to EG that weekend, some time spent talking with him might be well spent.

Glen Fewless was also there with 3 or 4 Brit single shot actions in a case.  He is hoping to be able to build custom rifles on them
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Old-Win
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Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #7 - May 29th, 2012 at 8:39am
 
Last fall, when I saw Glenn, he mentioned that Steve was in the process of reverse engineering one of Glenn's Fraser actions. DWS, that may be the one you saw. Most of those European falling block actions were jig filed and all fitting done by hand. Many of them were made by Francotte in Belgium and sold to the Irish and Britts. Westley Richards and Jeffreys were a couple that come to mind.
Bonny, by the way, lives in Ireland.
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QuestionableMaynard8130
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Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #8 - May 29th, 2012 at 5:52pm
 
duh!!!!   doubt we'll be seeing him in  North Central Indiana any time soon. Grin  even though I usuall take a bottle of Irish "holy water" with me to the matches.
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bonny
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Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #9 - May 29th, 2012 at 9:21pm
 
Old-Win wrote on May 29th, 2012 at 8:39am:
Last fall, when I saw Glenn, he mentioned that Steve was in the process of reverse engineering one of Glenn's Fraser actions. DWS, that may be the one you saw. Most of those European falling block actions were jig filed and all fitting done by hand. Many of them were made by Francotte in Belgium and sold to the Irish and Britts. Westley Richards and Jeffreys were a couple that come to mind.
Bonny, by the way, lives in Ireland.


The fact that british or european actions were hand filed is one of the main reasons why i wanted to make one, less tooling and setting up. Yes i am based in ireland , dublin to be precise , so i suppose as rigby gunmakers (now in california) was started here i should looking for rigby action plans.
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Chris B
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Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #10 - Jun 28th, 2012 at 5:02pm
 
Hello Bonny,
I have made Gibbs,Jeffery and Westley Richards actions,also have originals,they are time consuming and in parts complicated,(special fixtures needed) but wellworth the effort,as compared to the machine/mass produced rifles they have much more "class" .There were action investment castings available until recently,and I have made some by this method,but,having your own Mill and Lathe is the way to go,just contact me for more information.
Chris B.
France.
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Rock6.3
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Re: dropping block plans/blueprints or patents
Reply #11 - Sep 7th, 2012 at 6:23pm
 
Where were the castings acquired from?

Is it possible that they might become available again?

james a pickup wrote on May 21st, 2012 at 9:09pm:
I made drawings and prints for the Winchester High Wall, Remington Rolling Block, Ballard, Sharps Side hammer, and my Favorite,the Hepburn.I donated them to the ASSRA and the sets are available for $10 by the arciveist.These drawings have no tolerences, as none are needed for "Tool Room jobs".These were made to be sold with the castings(no longer available).

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