Author Topic: Muzzle decoration  (Read 993 times)

Offline Dutch Blacky

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Muzzle decoration
« on: January 10, 2022, 08:00:00 PM »
Regarding the picture of the muzzle of a Troutman rifle, I was asking myself, if the decorations (circles and holes/dots) had any practical meaning?




Have these markings been made only for decoration?
« Last Edit: January 10, 2022, 08:24:29 PM by Dutch Blacky »

Offline Avlrc

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2022, 08:21:01 PM »
 :o one time i look at these dots & they  looked raised , the next time I look at them they look recessed. 

IMO they were just for decoration.   I have at least half a dozen maybe more rifles with some kind of muzzle decor.  Mostly dots, but some circles. 

Offline Dutch Blacky

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2022, 08:34:59 PM »
I once read, that circles sometimes indicate, how often a barrel has been renewed. The Troutman rifle has a  .34 cal. and so I think the barrel has never been rifled for new.


Offline Angus

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2022, 09:12:34 PM »
Recessed. The shadow is cast into the depression the same as the ramrod shadow.

Offline Tanselman

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2022, 09:25:48 PM »
The circles seem to be more of a guide for the punched dots/small stars, so the maker can keep the punch marks "reasonably" spaced and organized. Several old "tales" float around about why the marks were used; one such story in Kentucky lore [from a county history, but NOT from the gunsmith himself] is that they identified a gunmaker's work. Perhaps that was a "little bit" true in a local market when a gunsmith did not sign a particular rifle, and only one or two gunsmiths were in the area, but muzzle designs are so similar and common it doesn't hold up well on a larger scale.

If we are going to have fun coming up with modern interpretations for why the old muzzle designs appear, one possibility is protecting the muzzle's integrity. It might be easier to detect the extent of damage on a dropped or "dinged" muzzle when it was decorated and the lines/dots got moved "out of kilter" a little, rather than looking at an unmarked muzzle surface. And then there could be the possibility that stamping the muzzle with evenly [well, almost] spaced rings of punch marks around the muzzle might slightly work-harden and stabilized the soft iron around the bore to better protect its integrity and accuracy. Or maybe it's just simple decoration that was easy to do and expected by the buyer. 

Shelby Gallien
« Last Edit: January 11, 2022, 12:13:32 AM by Tanselman »

Offline AZshot

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2022, 12:08:28 AM »
Tanselman, I wonder if any of your ideas are why, they are likely. 
« Last Edit: January 11, 2022, 03:18:50 PM by AZshot »

Offline Ky-Flinter

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2022, 04:16:55 AM »
:o one time i look at these dots & they  looked raised , the next time I look at them they look recessed.

Whew!  I'm glad it wasn't just me seeing that!

Ron
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Offline Dphariss

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #7 on: January 11, 2022, 09:27:46 AM »
:o one time i look at these dots & they  looked raised , the next time I look at them they look recessed. 

IMO they were just for decoration.   I have at least half a dozen maybe more rifles with some kind of muzzle decor.  Mostly dots, but some circles.
First time raised bumps. Next look I looked divots.
Crisis is the rallying cry of the tyrant”. James Madison

Offline Dutch Blacky

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #8 on: January 11, 2022, 12:24:27 PM »
One suggestion I heard: The dots might be the fixation points for the rifling draw bench.


Offline Robby

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #9 on: January 11, 2022, 04:52:56 PM »
:o one time i look at these dots & they  looked raised , the next time I look at them they look recessed. 

IMO they were just for decoration.   I have at least half a dozen maybe more rifles with some kind of muzzle decor.  Mostly dots, but some circles.

They were recessed till you mentioned that, now I'm crosseyed :oHAH!
Robby
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Offline heinz

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2022, 05:48:23 PM »
I think they serve the same purpose as carving behind the cheekpiece or chevrons on a nose cap. :-)
kind regards, heinz

Offline JPK

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #11 on: January 11, 2022, 08:46:38 PM »
The rings show me that the bore is off center, not an issue though.
A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.

Offline Daryl

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #12 on: January 11, 2022, 08:56:05 PM »
The dots are totally random as some line up with others while most do not. The rings, however appear to be quite evenly spaced
and it appears that JPK is correct.
Daryl

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Offline RobertS

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #13 on: January 12, 2022, 12:17:13 AM »
Hershel House recently posted this video to his facebook page, and suggests that one benefit is that the pattern breaks up the sometimes shiny muzzle to help avoid spooking game.  Also he shows how it's done: 

https://www.facebook.com/groups/304562264191306/permalink/624339488880247/


Offline spgordon

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #14 on: January 12, 2022, 01:04:09 AM »
Great video! Thanks for pointing to it.
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

Offline Tom Currie

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Re: Muzzle decoration
« Reply #15 on: January 12, 2022, 07:47:08 PM »
I enjoyed it also. Regarding the bullet mold with straight handles "I like this one, you could push a corncob on there so you don't burn your fingers"