View Full Version : 1842 Springfield Musket Question
08-16-2010, 05:33 PM
I have the opportunity to buy this 1842 Springfield Rifled Musket, lock dated 1845. The barrel is 30" long. Am I correct in assuming that this musket has been sporterized and is not an as issued musket? Thanks in advance.
08-16-2010, 05:45 PM
Although it is "interesting" in that some one, some time, some place took some extra pains to make it look like the M1847 Artillery Musketoon but didn;t make it with the proper 26 inch barrel.
Often times, 'cut-downs' can be post War surplus "farmer's" or "poor man" shotguns sold commercially, or even individual guns sometimes very crudely "sporterized."
08-16-2010, 06:01 PM
It is NOT an "as issued" firearm.
It is cut down.
This maybe due to it having been damaged in some manner. This alteration may have been the most expedient way of making an otherwise unusable firearm serviceable.
Both Richmond and Macon Armories/Arsenals were known to do this to M-1842's in this barrel length.
Is the front band held in place with the barrel band spring? It is hard to tell in your photo.
Are you sure this firearm is rifled?
08-16-2010, 06:22 PM
It appears that the nose cap is just friction fitted. I will have a better idea of all it's foibles when it arrives. Here is a closer photo of the nose cap. Thanks
08-16-2010, 06:41 PM
I believe 1847 musketoons utilized M.1841 rifle-size locks, too.
Craig L Barry
08-16-2010, 10:43 PM
Still and all, it would not be that hard to replace the barrel and forestock and have a fine re-enactor piece.
08-17-2010, 07:58 AM
I have an original that is very similar to what you have. I was trying to sell it awhile back but I priced it too high. It is totally functional just needs a new nipple. I plan on using it eventually. Anyway here is the link to the original post so you can see some pictures...http://www.authentic-campaigner.com/forum/showthread.php?28899-Original-1851-dated-Springfield-Musketoon&highlight=Josh+Sawyer
09-02-2010, 03:05 AM
I have a bit of a dilemma, Should I replace the nose-cap band spring in it's present position or cut the barrel back to carbine length? I favour leaving the nose-cap where it is and NOT to cut the barrel. Any thoughts or opinions appreciated.
09-02-2010, 08:36 AM
The CS modification(s) to this barrel length and the shorter 26" barrel used a "pan head" iron/steel wood screw to hold the front band in place. The body of the screw should be small enough in dia. to fit the hole in the band which was meant for the band spring. This wood screw simply screws into the stock through that same hole. No other modifications are needed.
You may want to check under the front band to see if there is a hole in the stock for where a screw "may" have been.
Should the front band have a sling swivel added/reattached, it seems more common that front band spring would be inlet to hold the band in place and support the weight of the firearm from a sling.
If you have never inlet a band spring before, I would suggest avoiding the attempt.
Just some thoughts on my part,
09-02-2010, 04:34 PM
Thank you very much for the excellent suggestion. I have inlet a band spring before but your idea is less damaging.
09-02-2010, 05:46 PM
Decades ago I fabricated a sorta musketoon out of the parts, shortened barrels and stocks one was once able to acquire from the likes of Cecil Ennis, R.I.P. Had Robert Hoyt press a .69 calibre rifled liner into the barrel, fitted an M.1861 rear sight, had the muzzle turned and a stud affixed to mount an M.1835 bayonet. It looks swell, is great eyewash mounting interior guard with artillery impressions, but I can't hit a bull's butt at fifty feet with it.
09-18-2010, 05:12 PM
Sorry to bump but the musket arrived and I have another question. There appears to be no evidence that there was ever a rear sight. According to Wikipedia, I know not the best source, some 1842s were sent to be rifled, would they all have had rear sights added?
09-18-2010, 05:58 PM
There are two types, the smoothbore musket as originally made. Between 1856 and 1859, the two national armories "rifled and sighted" 14,182, and
just "rifled" 4,363..
09-19-2010, 05:40 PM
Archie R. Lib
10-25-2010, 04:30 PM
A little late to the discussion here, but I know that about 3,200 1842 Springfield rifled muskets were cut down at the Springfield Armory to 33 inch 2-bands specifically for Fremont's expedition at the end of the Mexican War. My understanding was that they were mainly lock dated 1847 and had a spring clip for the nose cone and a lug to accept the .69 bayonet. Otherwise they are very similar to the one you have here. Many times these "Fremont" rifles or "Pattern 1842 Short Rifled Muskets" are easily confused with artillery models. On a limb here, but maybe you have a "pilot" or test/evaluation model? Or maybe an early version that was further "modified" after production?
11-08-2010, 11:45 AM
Kevin, Just my opinion, but I personaly would avoid any mods to the weapon. I would never leave out the possibility of a repaired weapon coming from a CS Armory. There are very good records showing Richmond Armory reparing many old large cal. weapons. Because of failing barrel making extrusion machinery, the Armory was caused to shorten the standard 40 inch barrel length to 33 inches on their rifle musket model. This was being done by 1864. Also telling would be that barrel length modifactions could be possible on other models. Another twist here is that the musketoon for C.S. was mainly being asembled at the much over looked Fayeteville Armory. Interesting weapon...
11-08-2010, 07:10 PM
I have left the musket as I found it, minus the varnish. I had my gunsmith give it the "once over" and I plan to give a try, with light loads, at the range. I will post the results:-)
Edit: Not definitive proof but a reasonable assumption. While we had the musket apart it was evident that the nose cap/front band had been in-place almost as long as the rear band. That is to say that the barrel had been cut long ago and the brightness of the metal of the barrel under both bands were similar.
Thanks to all who took the time to answer my questions.
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