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Auction Date: April 24, 2015

Lot 265: Rare Cased Pinfire LeMat Grapeshot Revolver

Sold for Rare Cased Pinfire LeMat Grapeshot Revolver
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Rare Cased Pinfire LeMat Grapeshot Revolver
Estimated Price: $35,000 - $47,500
Item Views 520 Bid Activity Average
Serial #Rare Cased Pinfire LeMat Grapeshot Revolver ManufacturerBelgium ModelLeMat
TypeRevolver Gauge12 Mm PF Catalog Page80
Barrel6 1/2 Inch FinishBlue/casehardened GripWalnut
Stock ClassAntique RatingSee Condition
DescriptionPinfire LeMat revolver manufactured in Liege, Belgium, between 1863 and 1865. The revolver has an oak case with four compartments lined with green velvet. The revolver has a 6 1/2 inch octagon barrel and nine shot cylinder chambered for the 12 M/M Lefaucheux pinfire cartridge and fluted nine-shot cylinder along with the distinctive LeMat 4 1/2-inch 20 gauge smoothbore "grapeshot" barrel. The percussion grapeshot barrel is fired by a pivoting firing pin on the hammer. An ejector rod is mounted on the right side of the frame with two screws. The revolver has a side-swinging loading gate on the right side of the frame, round trigger guard with no spur and butt with integral lanyard loop. The right side of the barrel is marked "COL A. LEMAT BTE." behind the ejector rod. The encircled Liege "E/LG/*" proof mark is stamped on the front face of the cylinder. "Crown/EL" is stamped on the left side of the barrel, and small "Crown/V" inspection marks are stamped on the left side of both barrels and the frame. The serial number "3214" is stamped on the lower right side of the frame. The left side of the frame is stamped with the number "182225". The barrels and cylinder have a high polish blue finish. The frame and trigger guard are color casehardened, and the hammer has a straw colored finish. The revolver has nicely figured European walnut grips with fine checkering. The case contains: (1) two ebony cleaning rods with brass tips, (2) a 500 count tin of percussion caps embossed "ELEY BROTHERS/LONDON" on the lid, (3) bell-shaped pewter oil bottle stamped "I/1765" on the top, (4) brass double cavity bullet mold for round balls and three-piece segmented slugs, (5) modern bristle cleaning brush and (6) several cast 12 M/M round bass and segmented slugs. A small number of LeMat revolvers were chambered for the 12 M/M Lefaucheux pinfire cartridge adopted by the French military circa 1857.

ConditionVery fine. The revolver is all original and retains 50% plus of the high polish blue, straw colored, and color casehardened finish. The exposed portions of the 12 M/M barrel and shot barrel have a smooth gray-brown patina. Significant amounts of high polish blue finish are present in protected areas. The cylinder has most of the high polish blue intact. The frame retains at least 60% of the muted case colors in protected areas. The casehardened finish on the back strap, grip strap and butt has faded to a smooth gray patina. The hammer retains at least 80% of the straw colored finish. The grips are in very good condition with sharp checkering. The case and accessories are in good overall condition. The case exterior shows minimal handling and storage wear. The green velvet lining is in good overall condition with some minor compression marks. The accessories show moderate handling wear. This a fine example of a Liege Pinfire LeMat revolver. LeMat revolvers rarely have any of the original finish remaining and cased examples are particularly hard to find. It would be hard to improve on this fine cased LeMat pinfire revolver.
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