Author Topic: Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel  (Read 1485 times)

Offline BigSkyRambler

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Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel
« on: May 25, 2022, 03:51:26 PM »
Looking for information on a builder.  A bit of an oldie from the 50s. Rifle is a nice left-handed KY/PA style. Item description said  "Top flat is engraved "19 GMH 55" (G Howe?). Top left flat is stamped "W. M. L. for G. H." (William Large?)." I added the question marks.

Anyone familiar with a "G. Howe?"  And did William Large ever mark his barrels this way?  Thanks.





« Last Edit: May 29, 2022, 06:24:42 PM by BigSkyRambler »

Offline Mike Brooks

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Re: Builder G Howe
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2022, 04:48:32 PM »
I'd say the barrel is older than the rest of the gun
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Offline BigSkyRambler

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Re: Builder G Howe
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2022, 06:25:54 PM »
I'd say the barrel is older than the rest of the gun
Could be.  Will know more when it is in hand.  Maybe addl. info. under barrel.  Thanks.

Offline BigSkyRambler

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Re: Builder G Howe
« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2022, 05:48:22 PM »
Here is the stamping.  Could this be an earlier version of the William Large stamp, considering it was stamped TO someone?  Incidentally, the rifle is gorgeous and likely unfired. :)


Offline BigSkyRambler

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Re: Builder G Howe
« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2022, 06:06:48 PM »
Here is stamp on muzzle that I just noticed.


Offline Bob Roller

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Re: Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2022, 05:05:13 PM »
In 1955 Bill Large was not MAKING barrels and did NOT make any from start to finish until his shop was finished in 1958.He gave me the first big bore barrel,a 1"x33" and 58 caliber and it was a match winner from the first shot in a completed rifle.
Before the shop was finished Bill bought rifled round blanks from John Buehmiller who I think may have been in Montana and he would alter
the rifling to suit his ideas and the plane them to octagon and install a breech plug. The W.M.L. is one of Bill's signatures and the number on the muzzle was PROBABLY from Buehmiller and the "L" indicated Bill had altered it.There were a few other makers that used those barrel blanks.
Bill was rerifling old barrels for years and his shop was in a small building where a carport is now.He had a Clausing lathe,a G.A.Fray vertical mill and a Grey bull gear drive planer with a 6 foot stroke.That mill was an oddity.The head moved around with hand wheels and the bed was stationary.I never used it but did use the lathe a few times for tumblers and then got a 12" Atlas I still have   but haven't used for over 2 years.
    I would say this is one of the first reproduction long rifles and that lock may be an antique possibly from the left side of a nice Henry Nock
shotgun.I had the moulds for the right side of a Nock flintlock and made a number of locks for the German market from them and few were ever sold in the USA.Any flintlock  rifle made in that time frame would be a real rarity and few if any wanted one to shoot.Whoever the maker was he had a good skill level in recreating an old rifle.

Bob Roller
« Last Edit: June 04, 2022, 05:38:30 PM by Bob Roller »

Offline Daryl

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Re: Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2022, 06:49:47 PM »
"Old John B. had his shop in Kalispel, Montana. I spoke with John on the phone, in 1975 after my drive to Kalispel to visit Les Bauska.
John had fallen and was ill and not "receiving" visitors.
Daryl

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Offline Majorjoel

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Re: Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2022, 07:29:51 PM »
Just my educated guess on the 19 GMH 55 would be that the builder of the rifle surrounded his initials with the year of his birth.  1955
Joel Hall

Online Eric Kettenburg

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Re: Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel
« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2022, 08:38:20 PM »
I'd second Mike - I don't think in any way that's a 1955 rifle.  I think someone recycled an older Bill Large marked barrel that had been on another rifle made in 1955.  I feel pretty positive that's an L&R Manton lock, and if it had been an original left lock off a double, it almost surely would have a countersink for a cross bolt head on the left side rather than just an exposed thread end; most of the doubles I've seen - the primary historical use for a left hand lock - ran the bolster lock bolt through from the left side and so on the left side there will be a countersink for the head, not simply threads exposed.  An original flint lock like this in left hand, in that condition, with no bolt head countersink, would probably be worth more than the entire rifle.

Also the proper wood removal around the breech area (slabbed off straight between breech and lock panels) does not look 1955; almost all those pre-Kindig and Shumway guns were overly chunky with far too much wood left over in that area in particular, rounded and humped.

Please don't take this as overly critical because I think it's probably a 1970s or 1980s rifle, and it's pretty darn nice with pleasing architecture.
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Offline BigSkyRambler

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Re: Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel
« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2022, 07:03:05 PM »
I appreciate all of the input.  Mr. Roller has helped set the barrel as one reworked by Mr. Large.  Other posts accurately peg the rifle as much later vintage with repurposed barrel. No offense taken, as that is why I came here looking for information.  The lock is an L&R Manton of obvious much more recent vintage. I like to accurately portray rifles and their pedigrees, so this information is extremely valuable.


Offline bones92

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Re: Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel
« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2022, 07:05:58 PM »
Still a neat rifle with a cool history.    Years ago I bought a flintlock rifle locally.  It was a very mediocre rifle as far as the stock and lock went, but whoever built it had obtained a Bill Large barrel for it (.40 caliber).   The stock and lock are gone, but I have the barrel set aside (and a Roller set trigger) for that day (that I hope comes eventually) when I can build it into a rifle.   Hope springs eternal!
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Offline Rod Man

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Re: Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel
« Reply #11 on: August 01, 2022, 11:38:33 PM »
Figured Y'all would like to know what happened to this Rifle.  I am the guy that bought it.  I bought it so my Grandson can shoot flintlocks with me.  Its a little ...OK a "Lot" heavy for him now but he'll grow into to it.  Shoots great!!! We just need more trigger time.  He's 12 years old, and what really just floats my boat!!!  He is into HISTORY!!!  Just means I have to buy 2 of almost everything now and that is OK.

RM




Offline BigSkyRambler

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Re: Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel
« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2022, 05:02:05 PM »
Outstanding!  I knew it was in good hands.

Offline Fisherking

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Re: Builder G Howe w/W.M.L. Barrel
« Reply #13 on: August 09, 2022, 08:52:05 PM »


Can f someone hasnít already suggested it- could it be a Griffon and Howe barrel?

https://griffinhowe.com/history