Old rimfire rounds found in my field

Foul Mike

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Apr 18, 2001
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I am not sure as to where I should post this. You guys in rimfire seem to me to be the more dedicated followers of helping people like me so I will put my post here. I do archaeological research in my local area and have in the past been more interested in lithic, {made from rocks or stone} depending on the regional terminologly. I, as well as my partner in crime, are amatuers, we do this for pleasure and not for money. Between us we have several degrees in Anthro and archaeology, yet we are farmers for our livings. Throughout our studies of our local area we have found lots of old brass, some rimfire and some centerfire and some old shotgun shell bases. Some of the rimfire brass seems to have been struck on both sides of the case rim as if it were a two piece firing pin. Is there a possibility of that, or were they turning the round over to take another whack at it? I don't have all the old brass with me right now but remember it at being .40 to .50 cal and a short case. If there is a refrence book out there about old brass I would like to buy it. If anyone is interested, I will pull the boxes and give detailed measurements as well as headstamps. This holds no value to me but if it does to some other person who is doing research in this area of cases, I would be very easy to get along with as far as transfering what we have to someone for research. If it were something other than research, like monetary gain, the person should know why I watch Snipershide and be very wary. Regards, FM
 

wilshire1412

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Re: Old rimfire rounds found in my field

In the mid 1800's the first among many now obsolete cartridge firearms were rimfire, with the Henry rifle in .44 RF being one example. The casing in your description sounds about right for a .44 rimfire which are a rather short casing. Not sure about the double strike though, I suppose there could have been a double pin striker incorporated to help insure ignition.
 

oldgrayone

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Re: Old rimfire rounds found in my field

There is a book called Cartridges of the World that has a lot of obsolete rimfire info in it.
 

clodhopper

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Re: Old rimfire rounds found in my field

I remeber reading but cannot remeber where that some old rimfires were built with a firing pin that struck the rim in two places 180 degrees apart to help insure ignition. Manafacturing processes back in the day were not as good as todays and getting the priming compound evenly distrubted was difficult.
Several older guns had a reversable fireing pin one way for rimfire and reversed for centerfire. This was most common in .32s There were rimfires and centerfires with the same case dimemsions.
 

MG-70

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Re: Old rimfire rounds found in my field

You mentioned multiple cases. Assuming they're the same type And that the distance between the firing pin strikes and the depth of the strikes are the same, I'd say it's a strong case for a weapon with double firing pins.

Is there a decent university or museum nearby that may have interest in your finds? The people who work at those places are usually very curious and helpful.

Sounds like an interesting hobby, thanks for the post.
 

Foul Mike

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Re: Old rimfire rounds found in my field

Thank you all for your input. Again, the rimfire section comes through. I have lots of work to do as to identifying all the old brass that we have gathered over the years. Finding good reference books isn't as easy as I thought it would be. I will follow through with all of your suggestions. If any of you have any more ideas as to good reference books, please pass them along. Again, thank you for your help. Regards, FM PS MG-70, I have looked up at Univ. of Wyo. They have a great Anthro Dept. They help all that they can. There used to be an Old Fart that hung around the Field School at Pine Bluffs, Wyo. years ago. He was a retired Marine ARTY, Chief of Smoke. He is who you went to with questions like this and got an answer. We all used him for these types of things. He had a plethora of knowledge on old firearms. Everyone kept telling him to,"Write it up, you won't be here forever." He would laugh and say,"I'll be here as long as you." Unfortunatly, that was not the case as the Old Gunny died unexpectedly of a Grabber. I hope this makes some of you Old Farts think about writing down your memoirs. Perhaps it would be a good thing to do here on the Hide. Write down what you remember and submit it. Just a thought. FM
 

polter71

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Re: Old rimfire rounds found in my field

Neat to see some photos of these old rimfire cases.
 

Foul Mike

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Apr 18, 2001
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Re: Old rimfire rounds found in my field

I will try to do that, however, my computer skills are limited at best and our active farming season is coming on. Therefore, I need to get one of my kids down here to help me do the photography and putting it in the right place. I am doing good to be able to post things, let alone send pictures. Hell, I can't even figure out how to make paragraphs. I will work on that as time and the tractor permit. I do realize that these faults are mine and I am the person that has to overcome them and I will start working on that now. I would love to be able to send out pictures of our finds as that is how you get input. The Old Dumby needs to learn a lot. I will start working on that but don't hold your breath unless you like yourself blue. I can give accurate dimensions and descriptions with words, I will work on the other things. I have a lot to learn about computer skills as well as rimfire cases, not to mention all the old centerfire cases I have found. Please bear with me as I look for answers. It doesn't help when I am at the farm for long periods and don't have internet access, it is very rural. I am working on that also but there are only so many hours in a day and I have to justify costs also. Thanks for your help, FM