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Restore Stock, Is It A No-No?


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#1 Gasam

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 10:28 AM

Heyas,

 

Awaiting my first and in all likelyhood only (hoping not to discover yet *another* thing to collect) Japanese matchlock.

 

Nothing special (as far as I can tell anyways), few parts missing but seems simple and utilitarian, just the way I like stuff :-) Plus it was for cheaps.

 

Enclosing a picture for anyone interested. I was wondering if it would be considered a big no-no to sand and refinish the stock?

 

The iron parts I would just clean (scrape) with something harder than red rust but softer than patina. Inside barrel I would brush with brass gun cleaning brush I thought, provided bisen will come out. Brass parts just leave as is or polish gently with clean microfibre cloth. Or so I was planning anyways. Sounds good?

 

Thank you as always, and cheers,

 

 

 

 

 

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • matchlock.PNG

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#2 Brian

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 10:47 AM

Refinishing stock...HUGE no-no.
I don't see too much that needs much work aside from fabricating missing parts. Looks good...I like it. leave the wood alone though :)


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#3 Bugyotsuji

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 11:07 AM

A good-looking gun, if needing a little TLC. The Ryuha school of gunnery is easy to see. Agree with Brian, hold off on all the abrasive stuff until you are ready to go gently all round. Needing a new pan and ramrod. Nice, thanks for posting.


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#4 Gasam

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 11:22 AM

Hi again,

 

Invaluable advise as always :-) Thank you both for replying and the sound advise and also kind words about the gun.

 

Thought I would try to fabricate pan cover and in the forums I found an old post showing how to make front barrel retaining ring from brass.

 

Thank you again both !

 

Cheers,


Best regards,

G. Samsonsen

#5 Bugyotsuji

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 11:51 AM

(Ogino-Ryu).

 

Ramrods are fun to make from a dowelling rod, either with machinery to save time, or lovingly shaped by hand!


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#6 Gasam

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 12:57 PM

(Ogino-Ryu).

 

Ramrods are fun to make from a dowelling rod, either with machinery to save time, or lovingly shaped by hand!

 

It shall be done :-)

 

Cheers,


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G. Samsonsen

#7 estcrh

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Posted 03 June 2017 - 08:24 AM

Needing a new pan and ramrod. Nice, thanks for posting.

Piers, it looks like it is missing more than a pan and ramrod.....but still not bad looking at all.

#8 Bugyotsuji

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Posted 03 June 2017 - 10:24 AM

Pan and surrounding bits! :)
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#9 Gasam

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Posted 03 June 2017 - 06:56 PM

Piers, it looks like it is missing more than a pan and ramrod.....but still not bad looking at all.

 

heyas again,

 

I will study this gun and others like it to find out if I can make replacement parts. Or have someone make what I cant. I think it must have an internal spring due to the position of the hinge of the "hammer" (is this what is called a serpentine in english?). Does not seem to be room for external spring under it? Also I cannot see shadow or markings etc where external spring would have been.

 

The lock must be fastened through the "cheek piece" of the stock with some type of pegs or something, but some or most of them seems to be missing. (or so it seems because on pictures of others somewhat like this one they are easy to see on opposite side of lock).

 

Also there seems to have been a front barrel retaining ring as per markings on the fore-stock?

 

Have to say looking forward to receiving it. No measurements or weight given. haha, what if it turns out 15 cm long miniature toy :-) Or even better, a 15 kg giant gun. time will tell.

 

Are there any books on the Japanese tanegashima /teppo/ hinawa-ju that are currently available and any good?

 

Thanks again and cheers, and have a nice weekend,


Best regards,

G. Samsonsen

#10 Brian

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Posted 03 June 2017 - 10:22 PM

Check the FAQ, there is a decent small section on these.


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#11 IanB

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Posted 03 June 2017 - 10:24 PM

Mr.Samsonsen, Your gun will be fitted with a spiral mainspring of brass on the inside of the lock, together with a horizontal sliding sear that is also operated by a small spiral spring. Once you get it apart it will be obvious how it all works. The lock is indeed held into the stock by tapered brass pins that fit into the wood, its front end being trapped under the band around the barrel and stock. These pins can be tapped out (gently) with a pin-punch through the holes on the opposite face of the stock. Note that one hole will not contain a pin - its purpose is to allow you to push out the lock-plate once the pins are all out. Take care that you don't chip the edge of the lock cavity doing this - just take it all very gently and all will be well.

Ian Bottomley


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#12 estcrh

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Posted 03 June 2017 - 11:06 PM

heyas again,
 
I will study this gun and others like it to find out if I can make replacement parts. Or have someone make what I cant. I think it must have an internal spring due to the position of the hinge of the "hammer" (is this what is called a serpentine in english?). Does not seem to be room for external spring under it? Also I cannot see shadow or markings etc where external spring would have been.
 
The lock must be fastened through the "cheek piece" of the stock with some type of pegs or something, but some or most of them seems to be missing. (or so it seems because on pictures of others somewhat like this one they are easy to see on opposite side of lock).
 
Also there seems to have been a front barrel retaining ring as per markings on the fore-stock?
 
Have to say looking forward to receiving it. No measurements or weight given. haha, what if it turns out 15 cm long miniature toy :-) Or even better, a 15 kg giant gun. time will tell.
 
Are there any books on the Japanese tanegashima /teppo/ hinawa-ju that are currently available and any good?
 
Thanks again and cheers, and have a nice weekend,




Take a look at my Pinterest board on Japanese matchlocks, you should find images of all the individual parts of a Japanese matchlock.
https://www.pinteres...-samurai-era-t/

Japanese matchlock nomenclature. Detailed image showing the barrel protector (ama-ooi), barrel protector wedge (ama-ooi kusabi ) and removable barrel bolt (bisen).
8de38ae4c1619092a8aabd3986131c32.jpg


Japanese matchlock firing mechanism (karakuri), internal spring type.
fe4c4d315db55a05e600723e684bbccf.jpg
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#13 estcrh

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Posted 03 June 2017 - 11:10 PM

Are there any books on the Japanese tanegashima /teppo/ hinawa-ju that are currently available and any good?

Recommended reading material.

BOOKS IN ENGLISH.


Noel Perrin "Giving Up the Gun: Japan's Reversion to the Sword, 1543-1879".

Olof G. Lidin "Tanegashima-The Arrival of Europe in Japan"

Shigeo Sugawa "The Japanese Matchlock" (English version).

Rainer Daehnhardt "Espingarda feiticeira: A introdução da arma de fogo pelos portugueses no Extremo-Oriente = The bewitched gun : the introduction of the firearm in the far East by the Portuguese" (Portuguese and English in one book).


BOOKS IN Japanese.

Taira Sawada "Nihon no Furuju" (Japanese Antique Guns).

Shigeo Sugawa "The Japanese Matchlock I & II"
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#14 Bugyotsuji

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Posted 04 June 2017 - 01:30 AM

Note that the pan itself is not illustrated in Eric's excellent photographs above.

 

Also, a kemurigaeshi is not so commonly fitted, so omission of that would not be a serious problem. A luxury option?

 

Looking forward to a shot of the stamp forward of the trigger, and of the Mei if any.


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#15 estcrh

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Posted 04 June 2017 - 04:24 AM

Note that the pan itself is not illustrated in Eric's excellent photographs above.
 
Also, a kemurigaeshi is not so commonly fitted, so omission of that would not be a serious problem. A luxury option?
 
Looking forward to a shot of the stamp forward of the trigger, and of the Mei if any.


Piers, kemurigaeshi are not to common, I never really looked to closely at these, now I will have to take a closer look at the images I have to see how frequently they were used. Here is a more standard example with a pan cover.
e3d7bbc4269312545d667b9ded3e2d53.png

#16 Gasam

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Posted 04 June 2017 - 08:45 AM

Hi again.

Thank you all so much for replying and sharing your knowledge and advice! I will study all of this :-)

Yes I will post pictures, the ones in my first post are the only ones I have so far, but in about 14 days time it will arrive and will post some details then of course for those interested.

Thank you all again!

cheers,
Best regards,

G. Samsonsen

#17 Bugyotsuji

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Posted 04 June 2017 - 09:38 AM

First rule with a Tanegashima is not to lay it on a surface with the lockwork facing downwards. Many kemurigaeshi must have been lost this way. Among the many guns with no kemurigaeshi, you will sometimes see a space where one must have been at some time.
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#18 Gasam

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Posted 10 June 2017 - 08:03 PM

Hi again all,

 

The gun came today and once again I was able to relive the feeling of holding a piece of history!

 

Of course I broke the rule of getting something about which I had done no previous studies (books are on the way). But I kept my own rule number one, never buy anything you do not like. I really, really like this gun :-)

 

The barrel was not secured by mekugi, as it is missing (the mekugi, not the barrel!). Still it was firmly stuck, but came loose after some convincing. Pleased to find lots of ink kanji on inside of stock. Some corresponds with kanji on barrel. Have tried decifering some kanji, will proceed more with this. All inputs appreciated as always :-)

 

Gun total weight is close to 5 kg. calibre is 1.6 cm / 0.63 inches if my measurements hold water. So about 6 - 6,5 monme?

 

One thing: cannot find vent hole, but pan is a bit dirty. Maybe it is under that dirt. If not, is it it common that guns were undrilled? Seems strange.

 

Action works. Hammer falls a bit to side of where it should, but easy to see why, it was slightly bent at some point. Easy fix.

 

Took some pictures inside of bottom of barrel with snake cam. Maybe there is a vent hole there, but very, very uncertain.

 

Think I will clean this up a bit, attempt to unscrew bisen. Can I put WD-40 or similar down barrel, is that allowed? also around bisen on outside? Gently heating the "chamber" with heat gun? No?

 

Pictures to follow. Rather a few I am afraid.

 

Cheers, and have a splendid, terrific weekend :-) , I surely will studying this :)

Attached Thumbnails

  • Stock2.jpg
  • pan_no_vent_found.jpg
  • mon_or_armoury_mrk.jpg
  • Stock3.jpg
  • stock1.jpg
  • vent_maybe.jpg
  • Vent_possibly.jpg
  • bisen_inside.jpg
  • bisen.JPG
  • barrel1.jpg
  • barrel2.jpg
  • barrel3.jpg
  • brl_single_kanji.jpg

Best regards,

G. Samsonsen

#19 estcrh

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Posted 11 June 2017 - 05:20 AM

Hi again all,
 
The gun came today and once again I was able to relive the feeling of holding a piece of history!
 
Of course I broke the rule of getting something about which I had done no previous studies (books are on the way). But I kept my own rule number one, never buy anything you do not like. I really, really like this gun :-)
 
The barrel was not secured by mekugi, as it is missing (the mekugi, not the barrel!). Still it was firmly stuck, but came loose after some convincing. Pleased to find lots of ink kanji on inside of stock. Some corresponds with kanji on barrel. Have tried decifering some kanji, will proceed more with this. All inputs appreciated as always :-)
 
Gun total weight is close to 5 kg. calibre is 1.6 cm / 0.63 inches if my measurements hold water. So about 6 - 6,5 monme?
 
One thing: cannot find vent hole, but pan is a bit dirty. Maybe it is under that dirt. If not, is it it common that guns were undrilled? Seems strange.
 
Action works. Hammer falls a bit to side of where it should, but easy to see why, it was slightly bent at some point. Easy fix.
 
Took some pictures inside of bottom of barrel with snake cam. Maybe there is a vent hole there, but very, very uncertain.
 
Think I will clean this up a bit, attempt to unscrew bisen. Can I put WD-40 or similar down barrel, is that allowed? also around bisen on outside? Gently heating the "chamber" with heat gun? No?
 
Pictures to follow. Rather a few I am afraid.
 
Cheers, and have a splendid, terrific weekend :-) , I surely will studying this :)

Better images please (larger) if possible, the whole gun would be nice.
 
My advice on the bizen, clean around the area were the bizen and the barrel meet, you can use a very fine point like a needle to gently / carefully scrape rust from the joint, you can do the same thing on the vent depression, I would not put anything down the barrel, you should check to make sure there is not a load still in the barrel, then use some penetrating oil, not WD40 as penetrating oil is very thin, clean again, reapply etc.

 

Use some GENTLE pressure on the bizen each time, wrap the bizen with cloth or blue duct tape etc to avoid damage, try this a few times before using more drastic methods, be patient. Apply some penetrating oil to the vent depression, it appears to be clogged. You may find that some people may have other methods, in that case pick the one that seems best to you.

 

The red arrows on the images below indicate the areas to use clean and use penetrating oil.
 
 
655161f6316c1f466d14803ac7a17c15.jpg

256ed61a70d60df5a911a71265ef4535.jpg



#20 Brian

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Posted 11 June 2017 - 10:19 AM

99% certain there is a vent hole. Maybe it was plugged to "deactivate" it...but maybe it is just dirt and dust. You can use a pin or toothpick to see if the vent hole can be cleared. It goes down a little bit and then horizontally, or sometimes just diagonally down.
I'm in the unlucky camp of having had 3 guns...every one of them with a bisen that would NOT remove under any circumstances. In spite of having tried every method, and having a full gunsmith workshop at work..none of mine would free up. Even with heat/freezing. Anyways...if you are lucky, yours will come loose. Don't use too much force, as they can be snapped off. I have decided to leave mine. Not imperative that it is removed anyways.

Your gun looks good..well worth a sympathetic restoration.


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#21 Gasam

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Posted 11 June 2017 - 11:08 AM

A few more pictures of whole gun. One from side and one where barrel is bottom up and inside of stock can be seen.

 

Took one from directly back of barrel so you shape can be seen, half circle plus 5 flats, this shape continues to rear sight and becomes round over whole circumference of barrel save for top where it is flat to muzzle ornamentation..

 

Will be gentle with bisen, Would not want it to snap. Better to leave it in place if too stuck. Will check for vent. would be fun if could fire blank black powder charges without projectile.

 

I realise of course that there are stunning fantastic exemplars of Japanese guns out there, some I have seen recently on Pinterest look like they were almost made yesterday, and this one is not all that, missing parts and stuff :-) But guns are cool, and this one, ye I quite like :-)

 

will attempt light restoration.

 

Thanks again folks for helping and input :)

 

Cheers,

Attached Thumbnails

  • shape.JPG
  • inside_underside.jpg
  • side.JPG

Best regards,

G. Samsonsen

#22 Bugyotsuji

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Posted 11 June 2017 - 12:29 PM

With time, TLC and luck, yours might open eventually.

 

But, we just need to reiterate first,

 

a) some Bisen are stuck so fast they can break under huge pressure. The barrel can also scar horribly from the vice.

 

B) towards the end of Edo there seems to have been a fashion for Bisen that were deliberately fixed in place by the smith. My 30-Monme was like this, but it took my friendly Japanese gunsmith to discover this. No amount of anything will move such a Bisen.


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#23 Bugyotsuji

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Posted 11 June 2017 - 01:00 PM

The good news is that we can read the name of the Choshu smith, 玉井真吾直清 who worked for the Hagi Han, and the lockmaker 戸村重右衛門 who also worked there in Ansei 安政. These two bits of information tell you that it is most probably a Bakumatsu gun, in the style of Ogino-Ryu. Unfortunately this particular smith is not listed, but someone very close, such as his father,玉井甚吾直清 is. The name is only one character different. (Unless a mistake was made by the records office on the paperwork!)

Interestingly there was a smith with the same name as your lockmaker; they must be the same person. His son/disciple(?) was 信兼, and I suspect that extra name is what you are seeing in the stock.

 

The words Niju makibari 二重巻張 refer to the method of barrel manufacture. (I am not sure what the single Bu 武 character refers to.)


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#24 Viper6924

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Posted 11 June 2017 - 01:51 PM

Thanks for that detailed translation of the gunsmith, Piers.
So this is actually a Choshu-zutsu. Normally this style of matchlock is associated with those mostly small caliber long guns featuring a muzzle that extends a good bit out from the stock. But military-grade matchlocks from in and around of Hagi was apparently made to match the specific school that it belonged to. Interestingly enough the 6-monme caliber is specifically mentioned in connection to Choshu gunsmiths.
So congrats to a quite rare gun which we can trace back to Choshu. Being made during the final years of the shogunate and used by troops from Choshu, I think it is a good chance that this gun been fired under battle-conditions.

Jan
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#25 Gasam

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Posted 11 June 2017 - 04:40 PM

Hi again!

Dont know what to say except thanks a bundle, this board never seizes to amaze me in both its expertise and helpfulness.

Thanks again all!

Cheers
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Best regards,

G. Samsonsen

#26 Gasam

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Posted 11 June 2017 - 06:52 PM

hey,

Quick upate then I'll go quiet, I promise :-)

Vent hole was found, seems to go slightly sideways for several millimeters, then it must be starting to go horizontal now or it would miss the barrel. full of dry caked debris. will take to qualified gunsmith tomorrow and see what they think.

I will now commence with this restoration project, and you will hear from me again on this gun when it is in better shape :-)

cheers,
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#27 BulletSprinkler

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Posted 13 June 2017 - 04:36 AM

99% certain there is a vent hole. Maybe it was plugged to "deactivate" it...but maybe it is just dirt and dust. You can use a pin or toothpick to see if the vent hole can be cleared. It goes down a little bit and then horizontally, or sometimes just diagonally down.
I'm in the unlucky camp of having had 3 guns...every one of them with a bisen that would NOT remove under any circumstances. In spite of having tried every method, and having a full gunsmith workshop at work..none of mine would free up. Even with heat/freezing. Anyways...if you are lucky, yours will come loose. Don't use too much force, as they can be snapped off. I have decided to leave mine. Not imperative that it is removed anyways.

Your gun looks good..well worth a sympathetic restoration.

 

Are most antique matchlocks sold out of Japan de-milled? I would eventually like to add one to my collection but I would want a shooter.


Jay


#28 Bugyotsuji

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Posted 13 June 2017 - 10:58 AM

No, the deactivated guns are or were in the minority. It is possible though that more younger dealers are starting to plug the vents in order to avoid legal hassles with deregistration paperwork etc., but I have no information on that and I guess it would be hard to get accurate figures.
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#29 Gasam

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 07:58 PM

Hi all,

 

Summer time (well up here at least ) , and I just wanted to touch base with my tanegashima-project :-)

 

A detailed description of restoration project will be posted with an ample supply of photos when finished for those interested, here is a quick cellphone picture of the barrel protector and the barrel protector retainer. Shape (particularly of retainer) to be refined and micro scratching taken out, then patination.

 

Not too shabby :-)

 

Next is front mekugi for retaining barrel then pan cover and lastly the rod for compacting powder and ramming in bullet.

 

Have to do all of this in between everything from family obligations to work, so this will take some time, but will get there eventually.

 

Finding someone local willing to sell small amount of brass stock was hard, and when it arrived, the brass was pretty darn hard too! Expected it to be softer for some strange reason. So filing etc takes time. Anyhow it is progressing steadily.

 

Thanks for looking!

 

Cheers,

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • gun.jpg

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Best regards,

G. Samsonsen

#30 Bugyotsuji

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Posted 19 July 2017 - 11:16 PM

From what I can see, much better than expected! :thumbsup:


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