Early English 1740 Trade Gun

Rifled in .54 caliber


This is one of my stocks that Phil Lewis of N.C. assembled and finished out. It has a 42" oct-round Colerain barrel in .54 rifled. The muzzle is coned for ease of loading. The lock is by Davis. The wood is plain straight grain beech stained to a nice dark reddish brown. Phil told me there was a crack on the left side from the wrist forward into the sideplate. (Look closely at the picture of the sideplate.) Unfortunately beech is a very unstable wood when drying and is prone to checking. The check was probably in it after shaping but only became noticeable after it was stained. Phil said this one did not go deep and he filled it with epoxy. Since the wood is dryer now and a finish applied, there should not be any further problem with it expanding. Hardware is brass. All of the parts have been aged. I did the engraving on this one. This gun has a rear sight added that has a nice silver band inlayed on it. There is a little filler here and there to fill small gaps but overall the gun looks good. The gun is new and has not been fired.

(Original trade guns used beech because it was a cheap wood in the 18th century and only used on trade guns, never on higher quality weapons. It was widely used for woodworking planes as well since it is hard and dense. Finding some that is long enough for a gun stock is difficult. I have searched for more beech for stocks but no one will carry it due to the unstable nature when drying. Once dry the wood is very stable.)

Weight is 8 lbs. 8 ozs.  Length of pull is 13".




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