Alexander Henry Rook Rifle

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Alexander Henry Rook Rifle

TH
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 23 Feb 2009, 18:36

03 Jul 2017, 13:30 #1

I bought this at the recent Birmingham Arms Fair

I like hammer single shots with Jones' underlevers, and what's not to like about Alexander Henrys


Not in particularly good condition with some surface pitting. 25" barrel, probably .380 rifle with a slugged bore of .376" (larger than the .360 No.5 which the dealer said it was
However the case and rim diameters are larger than the standard .380, which drops right into the barrel.  Any ideas?


~original~original








This looks original





The action has a different serial number to the barrel and tigger guard (A/H usual S/No. site)


Who is J D & S - Bill?





When I took the lock out this morning this horror appeared, major bodging, grinding away metal and screws plus filler





I was hoping to see a lock maker but it is unmarked, with recent regrinding  GRRRRRRR!





I saw this at the time of purchase and thought it possibly a conversion of a boy's gun, well done but the plastic butt plate ugh!


So, guys, opinions please, is it a poor restock or worse?


TH
Last edited by TH on 24 Aug 2017, 22:44, edited 3 times in total.
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joelblack88
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 01 Feb 2006, 03:21

03 Jul 2017, 22:59 #2

Those side hammer rook rifles are very rare here in the US. Because rook rifles often had 14 1/2-15" pulls, it is not unusual to find them with shortened stocks or very nicely re-lengthened like yours. The easy solution for your plastic butplate is to find one from an early Browning shotgun. Many folks think they are gutta percha, but they are horn with designs pressed in. If you can't find one where you are, let me know and I'll find one for you here.
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Bill Curtisra
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 21 Aug 2005, 16:47

04 Jul 2017, 13:38 #3

John Deane & Son, gun-makers (successors to Deane, Adams & Deane) 1856-73.
W. S. Curtis, A.C.I.I.,
Vice President (Hon.), Crimean War Research Society,
HBSA (Hon. Life),
Assistant Curator, Museum of the National Rifle Association,
Whitworth Rifle Research Project, MLAGB
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joelblack88
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 01 Feb 2006, 03:21

04 Jul 2017, 21:45 #4

I should have added that polishing removes the embossing.
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TH
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 23 Feb 2009, 18:36

04 Jul 2017, 21:59 #5

Thank you Bill. I take it that John Deane & Son made at least the action,  AH the barrel and possibly stock, with the lock bought in, or more probably Deane made the whole rifle? 

Joel, Thank you for your kind offer,  I will try around here for a butt plate first but will PM you if nothing turns up


Tony
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Mike Rowe
O/R
Joined: 04 Jul 2017, 23:38

04 Jul 2017, 23:38 #6

I think the little rifle was built by Dickson's - that is their stamp and serial number on the action flat.

The records indicate a pin fire pea rifle delivered April 8th 1867.

Henry's probably converted it to center fire, and re engraved it then.

I have seen others done like that.
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TH
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 23 Feb 2009, 18:36

05 Jul 2017, 22:56 #7

Wow! Thank you Mike - that would certainly make sense.  I looked very closely at the recess for the firing pin and you can see that it has been cut through the pattern of the original engraving

The Dickson serial number of 2679 on the action flat is what you looked up, I take it. The Alexander Henry serial number on barrel and trigger guard extension is 5289


Do you have access or copies of Alexander Henry records that are/were held by John Dickson?  They were very helpful in the shop giving me details of my two Falling block rifles but I have been unable to contact them at their workshop address (I will keep trying)


If the serial numbers follow the years then from Wal's AH book the date is early1882 for the conversion


Thanking you again for your expertise and comment


Tony
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Mike Rowe
O/R
Joined: 04 Jul 2017, 23:38

05 Jul 2017, 23:54 #8

Tony - I don't have access to the Henry records. The JD&S stamp jumped right out at me, as I've had so many antique Dicksons to
pieces over the years.
I looked up the serial number in Dallas' Dickson book, which gives a few details. I'm hoping he has a similar list in the new Henry
book. I have reserved a copy.
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TH
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 23 Feb 2009, 18:36

08 Jul 2017, 21:16 #9

Mike et al

I have spoken to John Dickson & Co. A very nice man told me that Donald Dallas visits every week or so and deals with enquiries about older guns, both Dickson and Alexander Henry

I shall wait to see what information is forthcoming

Tony

PS Don't know what has happened to my pics from Photobucket
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Pukka Bundook
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 03 Mar 2004, 15:19

09 Jul 2017, 12:55 #10

Can anyone tell me why I get no pictures, but a "Please update your account to enable third party hosting" message?

I don't have a photo-bucket account to update.

Richard.
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3miles2Gburg
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 22 Sep 2009, 18:21

09 Jul 2017, 13:24 #11

Richard - Photobucket is attempting to force all users who put their pictures on the site and link to third party postings like this board to upgrade to their /500 service for $400.00 a year.

Years of archives and valuable information access has been wiped out overnight for any pictures here linked to Photobucket.

And worse...the pictures that are linked are now blocked from access at the Photobucket site by the owners who put them there.
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HistoricBore
O/R
Joined: 28 Feb 2013, 18:58

09 Jul 2017, 21:52 #12

Hi TH

Until recently I had an Alex. Henry single shot side hammer Jones underlever "rook" rifle, serial number 5289, which I sold at auction, and then saw again on a stand at Bisley at the end of May. Mine turned out to be an early deer rifle chambered in the .360 x 2.25" cartridge.

It also had a short cut-down stock which I had lengthed to about 14.5". It was very accurate. I also developed a neat Rook loading for it, using a cut-down 30-30 case with a 0.375" round ball thumb pressed into the mouth with about 4.0 grains of a fast powder. Have you ever seen the early coiled brass rook loadings for this calibre, with the ball deep down inside the case??

Have fun with it!

HB
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TH
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 23 Feb 2009, 18:36

09 Jul 2017, 23:02 #13

Hi HB  If your serial number was 5289 it is the same rifle.  I bought it from Bill Phelps at Welsh Arms at Birmingham but who also has a stand at Bisley

Looking and measuring (without a chamber cast) the .360 X 2.25" is very probably the calibre


The only rounds I have seen are in Hoyem Vol. 3. Do you have one (or any type) you could sell me?


It looks like I will have to follow the standard forum posting for pics (will try tomorrow) - a pity, it was so easy with Photobucket


Fortunately I think NitroExpress load pics into the site as mine are all still there, unlike here


Many thanks


Tony
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TH
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 23 Feb 2009, 18:36

09 Jul 2017, 23:35 #14

Practicing uploading  with Douglas' instructions



Not sure what happened here,  I will rotate pics before uploading








Jon Dickson & Son original action






Total bodge of inletting






Interior of lock






Extended stock


Hope this works


TH
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TH
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 23 Feb 2009, 18:36

09 Jul 2017, 23:53 #15

HB - I take it this was yours?





Sorry for the messing around, practicing new way for pics


Tony
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HistoricBore
O/R
Joined: 28 Feb 2013, 18:58

10 Jul 2017, 11:14 #16

Hi TonyYes, that was my rifle. The story is that I bought it, sight unseen, from Harry ? in Essex, in 2003 about the time my parents were dying. I asked him what calibre it was on the 'phone, and he said it was a ".360 Sort-of". So I said that's fine, what type of action has it got? He replied that it had a funny lever thing that rotated around through 90 degrees. I said I don't have one like that, so you had better send it, so he did. He forgot to mention that the stock had been cut short.... This is how I learned about the Jones underleverI got round to putting it on my FAC in 2009, and fired 71 rounds through it. The rear sight was missing, so my late gunsmith filed one up whilst he was lengthening the stock. I can let you have copies of my records and maybe some other bits and bobs. I only sold it because I now have a double hammer rifle in the same calibre :-).I have your e-mail address, so I will drop you a line directly.HB
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TH
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 23 Feb 2009, 18:36

21 Jul 2017, 18:08 #17

For interest, Allan (HistoricBore) has sent me some cases and inert cartridges

It is .360 x 2 1/4' which is a cut above the Rook Rifle calibre I thought it was






The lower one is an early coiled brass case with a small Round Ball, a welcome addition to my collection even without the rifle


The top one is a different beast Full Nitro, by the indentations holding the bullet probably the 300 grain bullet. You would certainly know about it in this little rifle at a touch under 5 lbs! (not really for the Black Powder proof!)


More likely for Allan's double (which we would of course appreciate pics!)


I also now have some history from Dickson's original pinfire pea rifle of 1867 to Alexander Henry's 1882 entry "new barrel to .360" for Mr McKenzie" (thanks to Donald Dallas)  100 + years later..................


HistoricBore buying and shooting at Bisley and elsewhere to the sale at auction I downloaded the auction details and know why the dealer dropped £200 on his asking price!!


Many thanks to Allan and everyone for their help with this interesting rifle


Tony
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Bill Curtisra
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 21 Aug 2005, 16:47

22 Jul 2017, 00:23 #18

The .360 x 2 1/4 used to be referred to as the smallest of the "Express Rifle" group.
W. S. Curtis, A.C.I.I.,
Vice President (Hon.), Crimean War Research Society,
HBSA (Hon. Life),
Assistant Curator, Museum of the National Rifle Association,
Whitworth Rifle Research Project, MLAGB
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HistoricBore
O/R
Joined: 28 Feb 2013, 18:58

22 Jul 2017, 14:16 #19

Hi  TH

When I posted those two brass thingies to you the round ball was recessed into the case about half a inch, so it looks as if it has come forward somewhat to where it can be seen. Perhaps if you gently tap it on a soft surface it will disappear back inside the case up against the pinch of powder that is in there (I think).

I'm glad the dealer did you a bit of a deal !!

HB
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TH
Veteran of the Regiment
Joined: 23 Feb 2009, 18:36

22 Jul 2017, 16:53 #20

AHHH all is explained - I am the culprit!  I thought the ball had fallen back into the case so tapped it forward in a bullet puller!

I did not see that there was anything in it as the primer was struck, I live and learn (slowly)


Bill - thanks for the information, in a nitro proof rifle it would certainly be a small Roe/Fallow deer park rifle


Tony
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