Jump to content

I need a hibasami...


Recommended Posts

               I write to request the help of this fine community. I am hoping that someone here can tell me how to find and acquire a HIBASAMI for a Japanese matchlock. I don’t count myself as a tanegashima collector, but these things happen. As the attached image shows, I have this shootin’ iron that has lost its wick-holder. I just have to assume that there is a source for such things somewhere in Japan.  Please, offer me advice - - or help. I am sure that I can manage adjusting a “generic” replacement…. Where to Japanese gun-slicks get their parts?

Hinawa3.jpg

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The large butt shape with a point, and the almost triangular trigger guard point me towards Higo guns. Hibasama come in many sizes and styles, and the way they anchor can be mechanically quite different.

 

There is a strict law against 改造 kaizō in Japan which is open to interpretation by the police, which in turn means that anyone working on ‘fixing’ guns for customers generally does not advertise the fact, in case they are accused openly or in secret of falling foul of said law. Accordingly there is this silly game of everyone pretending not to know anything.
 

Over the years I have had various odd lock parts which usually get passed on, in part thanks, to people who have done work for me.

 

All I can offer here is to keep my eyes and ears open, and grab a hibasami (and locking pin) if I see one. Please do not hold your breath. (As I recall Brian was at one time looking for bits of lockwork, as too some other members.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, I think just about everyone needs parts. Usually pan covers, trigger guards and what you need.
I think it would be easier for you to have a gunsmith make one. It's not too complicated. Can be patinated fairly easily.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you Piers and Brian.

I had very little contact with guns while knocking about Japan, but I can certainly believe that folks are "careful" with firearms.  But, I think that extra pieces must be available in Japan. I am quite sure that the extra tanegashima parts that were sold by Dixie Gun Works were made in Japan. The fact that those parts all sold out suggests that people DO need matchlock parts, and I have to wonder how many of those parts were sold back to Japan.

Piers, please let me know if more odds and ends turn up.

Peter

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

I've made a couple of hibasami in the past, some of which are really easy to make since they have a tab that fits into dovetail groove behing the pan, the other type is less so. The missing one illustrated by Peter is of the latter type but it isn't too bad. It is important to use a piece of brass that fits tightly into the notch at the front end of the pan. Cut it to length and round the front end. You then have to cut away some of the width so that it sits on the top of the pan fitting against the barrel with the back end buttiing against the breech band of the gun. It will now hold in place from side to side but can be lifted out of position. Looking at the breech end  of the barrel with the hibasami in place you will see a notch cut in the barrel just above the pan. Make a mark on the rear face of the hibasami at the position of this notch. If you own a milling machine the next bit is dead easy. Cut a long notch from the mark along the back of the hibasami the length of the notch in the barrel. If you haven't a milling machine you will need to make a small chisel to cut the notch. Most guns have the upper part of the pan cover that butts against the barrel when closed, thinned off. You need to file the bottom edge of the hibasami so that this thinned edge of the pan cover can slide under it. Finally fit the hibasami in place and drive a sliver of brass into the notches of barrel and hibsami to stop the latter lifting out of place and the job is done.

Ian Bottomley

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you very much, Ian. Indeed, I am  once again planning to work on this project so I appreciate this encouragement. It arrive at the right time. 

Malleable brass rod is a bit of challenge, but I have some that will respond so I'm looking forward to the work. I have no power equipment so I am expecting to "forge" the piece. Slow pounding and frequent annealing!

THANKS for your help!

Peter

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...