16th CENTURY JAPANESE FLINTLOCK PISTOL by RELICART
Essentially Oriental, this small stocked flintlock action pistol was however Birmingham proof house stamped and manufactured in England. A wonderful conversation piece this beauty features an exotically carved hexagonal dragons mouth barrel. The barrel and trigger guard are beautifully finished in antiqued silver tone with contrasting blackened flint mechanism and trigger for a stunning visual appeal. The highly ornate appearance of this pistol is typical of the period when many weapons were decorated with mythical and spiritual figures, often in the form of dragons or serpents. Highly sought after, possession of exotic designed weapons were often considered a measure of elite status. Such items became a rare item for fair trade and commerce, or lucky prize in forced seizure by a Pirate. Even today, this unusual replica makes for a mysteriously beautiful old world conversation piece, and is a prized collectable.
Note: You must 18 years of age or older to purchase this pistol. These handsome collector model guns are made of antique finished zinc cast metal alloys and polished hardwood. The screw heads are molded into the metal and cannot be removed. These models cannot withstand misuse or excessive dry-firing. Cannot be made to fire real ammunition.
FLINTLOCK PISTOLS - A PIRATE'S COMPANION
Unlike the rifle, pistols seemed to be a pirate's best friend. In most pictures of pirates, it is clear that a number of pistols were carried by each pirate. In most pictures of BlackBeard, at least a half dozen pistols, assumed loaded and ready, can be seen in his sash. Pistols came in in a variety of shapes and styles, from long to short barrel versions, approx 9 inches and 12 inches long, with a bore of about 0.56 inches. The butt had a rounded and sometimes metal base (known as a skull crusher butt cap) so the pistol could be used as a club once fired. Issued either singularly or in pairs, most sea pistols had an effective range of only 3 or 4 yards. Moreover, pistols being what they were and boarding attacks being virtual mob assaults, one did not need to be much of a marksman. An enemy was usually only a few feet away if that far. Anyone armed with a musket would have found it far more hindrance than help.
Flintlock pistols were so called because the lock uses a flint to strike sparks into the priming pan when the trigger is pulled. A small amount of gunpowder in this pan is ignited, which in turn ignites the main gunpowder charge in the barrel, firing the lead ball. Both the main charge and the ball were loaded from the front, or muzzle, of the barrel, after which the priming charge was poured into the pan – all very time consuming! Often the priming charge would burn but fail to ignite the main charge – whence the expression flash in the pan! Though oriental in design, the original of this particular flintlock pistol was made in England. This non-firing version is accurately detailed - a great costume or conversation piece.