.41 Rimfire
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Single shot Pistols and Derringers

Many Derringers have more than one barrel, but their use aligns with single shot pistols and concealment weapons, so I include them here.

Henry Deringer was a Philadelphia based gunmaker whose bread and butter work was Kentucky type rifles and duelling pistols, his workmanship was first class and sought after by gentlemen, hunters and frontiersmen alike. The Deringer name is most closely associated with a small, percussion, single shot pistol in .41 calibre that he designed in the 1840's, which was made famous by the assassination of President Lincoln in 1865.

The Deringer design was widely copied and Deringer became a generic term for a small handgun of this type. Derringer is often spelled with two r's and the variants are interchangeable. When cartridge firing handguns were developed, any small pistol was referred to as a Derringer.

Reid 'My Friend' Knuckle Duster Revolver James Reid 'My Friend' Knuckle Duster Pocket Revolver .22 rimfire 7 shot. Silver plated brass frame with brightly blued cylinder, the hammer was also blued, but in this example it is somewhat rusty. The weapon depicted is lightly engraved, but others can be found with extensive and deep engraving. The 'My Friend' was also available in 5 shot .32 short rimfire cal or 5 shot .41 short rimfire. An example exists that has a 1 7/8" round barrel added to the frame, which makes it look more like a conventional revolver than a pepperbox, another description lists an optional 48 mm barrel. The weapon was produced between 1868 & 1882 by James Reid in the upstate New York factory in the Catskill Mountains. Engraving normally consists of scrolls on either side of the frame, a checkered shield pattern on the back of the frame with scrolls on the back of the frame and border engraving on the top. The top strap is stamped on the left side above the cylinder with the words... MY FRIEND PAT'D DEC. 26, 1865.

Remington double barrelled Derringer Remington Arms Double Derringer... This was the most popular breech loading Derringer (about 150,000 were made, plus many copies) and was the favourite of riverboat gamblers. Deadly at up to 50 ft, the Model 1866 'over and under' was chambered for two .41 rimfire rounds. The superposed double was widely used in Wild West times by gamblers, saloon girls and ladies and has become the 'most recognisable' Derringer.

The .41 rimfire cartridge was created for used in small Derringer type pistols. The .41 rimfire round was very slow, 13 grains of black powder propelling a 130 grain lead bullet at 425 feet per second, yielding a muzzle energy of 52 ft lb.

The forerunner of the Remington Double Derringer was designed and patented in late 1865 by Dr. William Elliott, in 1866 this design was adopted and manufactured by Remington and had a 71 year production run from 1866 to 1937.

The Remington Double Derringer Operation

The weapon is single action, with the hammer mounted firing pin set to fire the upper and lower barrels in an alternating sequence. The alternating cam and firing pin (along with it's spring) fit into recesses on the right hand side of the hammer. The star shaped cam has teeth of deep or shallow cut in order that the two barrels are properly served.

Loading or Unloading is achieved by swinging forward the barrel release latch on the right hand side of the frame, situated just above the trigger (which remains shrouded while the hammer is uncocked). Releasing this locking cam allows the barrels to hinge upward, exposing the chambers. A sliding manual extractor on the left hand side, in a groove between the two barrels can be moved rearward to eject the spent cartridge cases.

The right hand side grip has a threaded bush, while the left hand grip has a bush that is recessed to take the head of the grip fixing screw.

The simple and robust design can be easily worked on with hand tools and is likely to give many years of reliable service with minimal maintenance.

Item Description
1Monoblock Barrels
2Barrel Locking Cam
4Pivoted Firing Pin
5Firing Pin Spring
6Fire Alternating Cam
7Alternating Cam Spring
8Hammer Spring
10Ejector Retaining Screw
11Sliding Ejector
13Trigger Spring
14Barrel Hinge Fulcrum
15Locking Cam Retaining Screw  
16Trigger Pivot Pin
17Hammer Pivot Pin
18Firing Pin Cam Spring Screw
19Hammer Spring Screw
20Grip Fixing Screw
21Grip (L & R pair)

 Originated... 05 December 2002, New Domain... 25 November 2003, Upgraded... 25 January 2007, Further Upgraded... 06, 07, June 2007, Code Altered... 18 May 2008,
Source Code last updated...
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