J. P. Beck Lebanon, Pennsylvania longrifle,
.50 caliber, 44" Rice swamped barrel,
curly maple, sliding wood patchbox, brass trim,
new, unfired, by J. E. Brown
Part Number: AAR-575
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This nice replica of a John Philip Beck - Lebanon township, Lancaster County Pennsylvania longrifle is as new, unsparked, unmarked. Lebanon township is located just to the north of Lancaster County. John Philip Beck was the preeminent gunsmith in this region from the late 1770's until his death in 1811. Dr. George Shumway suggests that J.P. Beck's unique style of rifle architecture changed little over this period, unlike many other gunsmiths, during the golden age of the American longrifle.

The rifle was constructed by contemporary gunmaker J.E. Brown and is signed on the top flat of the barrel. Stocked in curly maple with narrow bands of figure, the stock is stained to a reddish brown with golden undertones. Neatly fitted with excellent metal to wood fit the brass furniture is polished bright. The Rice swamped barrel, double set trigger, and Jim Chamber's Deluxe Siler flint lock are finished to a dark brown. Weighing in at 8.2 pounds the rifle has a trigger reach of 13-1/2", resulting in a antique appearance and length that will suit today's average sized shooter.

The .50 caliber swamped octagon Rice barrel has a 44" length. The swamped octagon barrel is thickest at the breech, tapers to a narrow waist, and flares slightly at the muzzle. Cut rifled the bore has seven lands and radius grooves with a 1 in 66" twist for a tightly patched round ball. The bore is bright in as-new condition. The flat top rear sight is dovetailed 11-1/2" ahead of the breech. A nickel silver blade front sight is dovetailed behind the muzzle.

Rice Muzzle Loading Rifle Barrels are set between centers and milled octagonal, insuring a centered bore, concentric with the exterior, with no "run-out". Each barrel is stress relieved in an atmosphere controlled electric furnace, to eliminate work hardening or barrel warp, and to dampen harmonic vibrations or barrel whip. After the rifling has been cut, each bore is "ball burnished". A carbide bore-sizing die is pulled through the barrel, to insure bore dimension uniformity, eliminating any tight or loose spots inside the barrel. This critical procedure leaves the top of the lands smooth and polished, equaling the traditional lead lapping procedure. Rice barrels are Match grade quality, with bench rest capability. Rice barrels do not require lapping or extensive shooting to break-in.

The stock is a hard, dense piece of maple with narrow bands of figure. The stock is stained to a deep reddish brown to highlight the figure. Installed in the butt of the rifle the sliding wooden patchbox is shaped in the style of an original J.P. Beck rifle. The patchbox is easily opened by applying pressure to the rear latch, allowing the cover to slide off and on the gun and gives access to the cavity below. This is a nice addition to the rifle and creates a nice storage area for your extra shooting supplies. A raised molding extends from the toe to the rear of the triggerguard bow. The lock panels are shaped with a raised border with a large oval beaver tail on the wrist. A raised molding extends the length of the forearm. A brass muzzlecap secured the correct style copper rivets is fitted to the rifle to protect the end grain of the stock.

The tapered comb of the buttplate is finished with three flats and a wedding band border at the front. The cheek is angled to the rear, to recoil away from your face, an ingenious feature found on better rifles. The wrist moves into the flared tang of the 44" swamped octagon barrel. The lock panels gently taper widest at the rear in early longrifle fashion. The thumbnail shaped tang is surrounded by very shallow antique style raised carving. The toe is fitted with a long brass toeplate patterned from an antique rifle by J.P. Beck. The toeplate is fitted with four blued steel screws, the slots are neatly aligned. Forward of the toe the triggerguard has been pinned to the stock as is traditional on early longrifles.

Well ahead of the triggerguard the ramrod is held in place by two forward pipes and one entry pipe. The 3/8" diameter ramrod is finished to a dark brown and is fitted with a 10-32 threaded brass tip. The brass sideplate of the rifle is shaped in the style of J.P. Beck with the small flats on the front extension. The domed head lock bolts pass through the stock and engage the lock on the opposite side. The stock is shaped with raised carving ahead of the square cheek. The cheek is shaped with a molded edge and fitted with a hand engraved hunter's star. Raised carved scrolls decorate the stock behind the cheek and this carving is very well executed with smooth clean backgrounds, the work of skilled hand and sharp tools.

Ignition for the rifle is provided by this Jim Chamber's Deluxe Siler flintlock. Notice the tall cock, top jaw and jaw screw, which sweep the frizzen from a higher point with more velocity, for better sparking. This lock has a good strong mainspring and should send a shower of sparks flying when the flint and frizzen connect. We recommend our #FLINT-ENG-6 for best performance in this rifle. The lock is finished to a smooth dark brown.

A stainless steel vent liner is drilled in the side flat of the barrel. The vent is well positioned both horizontally and vertically on the pan. If your flint longrifle suffers from that infamous slow whoosh-bang ignition delay, study the work of today's best gun makers, and position your vent well centered on the pan, high above the bottom, to serve as a window on the center of the flash.

The double lever double set triggers are properly tuned to fire from either the set or unset position. Adjust the screw between the two triggers, inboard to reduce set trigger release pressure, our outboard to require a stronger pressure. When screwed fully inboard, the adjustment screw disables the rear trigger, so the rifle must be fired from the front trigger, which requires about a four pound pull for release. It is wise to disable the rear trigger, when hunting in very cold weather. But the set trigger can provide very light release, perhaps an ounce or two, for accurate aimed shooting during pleasant weather.

If you desire a attractive Revolutionary War period longrifle, then consider this fine piece. In as new condition, the rifle has a bright bore and none of the handling marks commonly associated with normal use. A wonderful piece for display the rifle should also be an excellent shooter, add it to your black powder collection today!

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