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Allen & Wheelock Lip Fire Navy - 8 - VERY FINE

Allen & Wheelock Lip Fire Navy - 8 - VERY FINE

  • Product Code: FHG-1366-SOLD
  • Availability: Out Of Stock
  • $1.00

This is one of the rarer Civil War era Secondary Martial Revolvers that was made in small enough quantities that many advanced Civil War handgun collections do not have one in it. The Allen & Wheelock Center Hammer Lipfire Navy revolver,3rd Model Lipfire or (Flayderman 5A-067) was a .36 caliber single-action revolver that fired a proprietary self-contained Lipfire cartridge. It is estimated that approximately 500 of these revolvers were produced during the early 1860’s. The revolver had a six shot cylinder and was manufactured with a variety of barrel lengths, including 4”, 5”, & 6” with longest 8” barrels being the most desirable and least often encountered. These guns used a unique cam-action trigger guard to actuate the ejector, which removed the spent cases from the cylinder. In the later percussion version of the gun, this same action would be used to actuate the loading lever. The serial number 350 is visible on the inside front face of the loading gate, and on the rear face of the cylinder, on the top of the pin and on the right side of the frame under the grips. Both grips are also stamped 350 on the inside surfaces. The left side of the octagon to round barrel is very clearly stamped with the typical Allen & Wheelock markings & patent information in two lines:
ALLEN’s PAT’s SEPT. 7, NOV 9, 1858

The markings are much better than are typically encountered on Allen & Wheelock revolvers, although the very end of the die stamp apparently did not strike, as on the first line the “S’ in “MS’ is light and the “US’ is not visible, and on the second line the year is missing the 58. Were it not for the fact that the gun violated Smith & Wesson’s patent on the bored-through cylinder, it no doubt would have continued in production and been quite successful. As a result of losing the patent infringement battle, the gun was subsequently redesigned as a percussion revolver.

This example is in VERY FINE condition overall. The 8” octagon barrel retains some nice traces of the original blued finish, mixed with a smooth pewter gray patina. The barrel retains nice, sharp edges over its entire length. The metal is almost entirely smooth and crisp, with only some light scattered peppering present on the barrel. The frame retains about 10%-20% of the original deep blue finish, mostly in protected areas. The balance of the frame has the same pewter gray patina as the barrel. Much like Starr revolvers, the finish on Allen & Wheelock guns tended to flake, and Allen’s are rarely encountered with any blue at all. The cylinder retains about 30%-40% of its original blued finish, mixed with a smooth plum-brown patina. The hammer retains some about 20%-30% of the original case coloring, fading into a silvery pewter color with some very nice vividly colored highlights. Some of the small parts in protected areas still retain light traces of blue as well. The two-piece grips are in NEAR FINE condition overall showing the normal light wear that is expected from handling and use. There are a couple of minor old chips along the bottom edge of the right grip panel that does not detract from display. The grips retain about 80%+ of their original varnish and are solid, with no cracks or repairs. The gun still functions very crisply and works exactly as it should. The times and locks up as tightly as the day it was manufactured. The bore is in FINE condition and is bright and shiny with very crisp rifling. Were ammunition to be available for the gun, there is no doubt that it would work very well and shoot accurately. The original pinched brass front site is also present on the end of the muzzle and is in fine condition. Unlike most Lipfire revolvers encountered today, the gun is still an unaltered Lipfire pistol and has not been modified to rimfire, as the majority of these pistols have been. The triggerguard actuated ejector works perfectly and very smoothly, functioning exactly as it should.

This is simply a fantastic looking example of a relatively rare Civil War era revolver. These are rarely found available for sale in this level of condition, especially with the 8” barrel. This one displays wonderfully, is very well marked, and would simply be a wonderful addition to you Civil War revolver collection.


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Tags: Allen, Wheelock, Lip, Fire, Navy, 8, VERY, FINE