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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  The Darksider's Den (Moderator: Cuts Crooked)  |  Topic: 12 shot Walch Navy Revolver 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: 12 shot Walch Navy Revolver  (Read 4482 times)
Henry4440
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« on: September 09, 2011, 02:00:19 pm »


Just read Louis L'Amour's novel 'Lando', where he wrote about a Walch Navy cal.36 Revolver, 12 shot!?. Never heard of this gun before, so i googled it.
And here is what i found:




......Although it looks very much like a 6 shot revolver, and it only has 6 chambers, the gun is actually able to fire 12 rounds before reloading!The secret to the extra firepower is what is known as “superimposed loads”.  Basically, the chambers are loaded with a powder charge with a bullet sitting on top, as is normal.  Then another powder charge and bullet is loaded on top of the first.
The reason this doesn’t lead to an exploded gun and missing fingers is due to the unique ignition system.  There are two percussion caps for every cylinder.
The gun is equipped with two hammers, and two triggers.  Both hammers are cocked at the same time, but only the right-handed trigger is squeezed to set off the first shot.  Then the left-hand trigger is squeezed, the left-hand hammer drops, and the second bullet goes flying.  Cocking the hammers again will cause the cylinder to revolve as per normal.
Percussion caps are supposed to create a spark to set off the powder.  Notice the ring of nipples to the outside of the cylinder?  Those are the caps that are set off by the right-hand hammer, the hammer you are supposed to squeeze first.  They don’t have a hole which goes directly into the back of the chamber, but instead channels the spark down a little tunnel.  After about an inch, the tunnel makes a left hand turn and finally emerges into the chamber.
The hope is that the extra inch traveled will mean that the spark from the right-hand trigger will set off the powder charge in front, which will send the first bullet flying down the barrel while leaving the second bullet and powder charge untouched.  The left-hand trigger will cause the left-hand hammer to drop, which will impact on the inner percussion cap, and hopefully cause the second charge to ignite.
What happens if you squeeze the left-hand trigger first, setting off the powder charge in back even though the bullet in front is still waiting to be fired?  Then you get a broken gun and fewer fingers!  Better get it right every time, because you won’t get another chance if you screw it up....

 Wink
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« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2011, 05:41:38 am »

There were lots of strange adaptations of Mr. Colts design ( ie revolver ) in production back then.  Most didn't do well commercialy and fell by the wayside as Colt, Remington, Smith & Wesson, and a few others became the standards of the day  . . . .
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« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2011, 12:54:27 pm »

Thanks LH fer postin, I really Really Like the mechanics of that pistola!  Grin

Just shows how ingenious some people are at addressing the eternal problem of... MORE FIREPOWER!!
It musta sounded like ya were double tappin!!

Wonder what the powder charge was, `spect it could not have been much more than `bout 12-15gns


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« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2011, 03:22:58 pm »

I think one would have to be careful with the length of the load column also. Shocked

Actually, while this is pure speculation, I'd bet a dollar to a donut that the cylinder could withstand a double charge.  We're probably only talking about 15 to 20 grains of powder under each bullet.  If the bottom charge fired first, it would just push the top charge and bullet out the cylinder and down the barrel.  Again, pure speculation.
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« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2011, 05:20:51 pm »

I remember reading the same book.  Never looked into how the gun worked.  If I remeber the book, this wasn't his everyday carry gun but He did take it along when he was 'spectin' trouble.
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« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2011, 06:00:23 pm »

The Walch 12-shot also figures in greatly in Louis L'Amour's SHOWDOWN AT YELLOW BUTTE.  The "good guy" Tom Kendrick, uses one at the end to kill the bad guy, Alton Burwick, after Burwick believes he has fired the last round out of his S&W Russian revolver.  Good book and well worth the read!  Imagine, a main character who's not carrying the "usual" Colt SAA!  This guy carries S&W Russians and Walch's!  Cool stuff!

The double charges in the chambers of the Walch were loaded with wax "plugs" in between the charges to keep the front charge from discharging the rear one when fired.  It had two, side-by-side hammers, one for each set of nipples.

Jake
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« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2011, 10:48:01 pm »

that's the one I was remembering.  reread it more recently.  I'll have to go back and read the other one again.
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« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2011, 01:13:05 am »

They were also made in both steel and brass frames, the brass ones were ususally engraved.
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« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2011, 07:06:43 am »

Cool bananas!
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