Author Topic: Picked Up a Hawes .44 "Navy" With Questions  (Read 235 times)

Offline 103

  • Citizen
  • *
  • Posts: 7
Picked Up a Hawes .44 "Navy" With Questions
« on: December 12, 2019, 10:40:35 am »
So I know I do not post here a lot, but I have been playing with cap and ball revolvers for a few years. I worked for a gun store that had just a box full of parts that I would tinker with and build guns out of. I also do ACW reenacting and living history, so I have a couple of decent revolvers for the rare opportunity to use one in an impression.

Recently I traded for an unfired repro 1859 Sharps off an old friend. Well he had a bunch of random BP stuff that he wanted to unload and just give me. One of the things I ended up with was the Hawes .44 "Navy," brass frame. Lock up and timing seem perfect. Nipples appear to be aftermarket, and my Remington #10 caps will not fit (caps are too small). Other than that, the only real downside is that the sight bead is missing. It looks like someone tried to replace it at some point as there is old epoxy in and around the hole. I would have already replaced the bead, but it's hard to pay $10 shipping on a $4 part, so I'll just get a bead the next time I order more substantial parts or gear. My buddy said he paid $100 for it at a gas station (being sold by the gas station inside the store) in Montana maybe five years ago. Either way, I never complain about free (to me) guns.

I am trying to figure out who made it and when. It has no proof markings anywhere that I can see on the frame or the barrel. It is marked "Black Powder Only" on the bottom left flat of the barrel just above the reloading lever. It is marked "HAWES" on the right side of the frame near the front of the frame. Right side of the barrel is marked "CAL .44 NAVY MODEL - MADE IN ITALY." Stamped "COM" within a rectangular box on the underside of the barrel hidden by the loading lever. Serial number is on the frame and barrel and match: 2292.

I know these guns aren't worth much at all--I am just curious about who made it and when. If pictures would help, I can take some and attach them to this post. I appreciate any input.

ETA: And by "not post much," I clearly meant this is my first post! Ha--I did not realize I have never posted here before. I have been coming here for years to learn from you guys!
« Last Edit: December 12, 2019, 11:00:11 am by 103 »

Online Coffinmaker

  • Top Active Citizen
  • *
  • Posts: 5727
Re: Picked Up a Hawes .44 "Navy" With Questions
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2019, 11:23:49 am »

A .44 Navy is actually a "Never Never" historically.  Colt never made an 1851 in .44.  That little disclaimer out of the way, Hawes is/was a German outfit.  They imported the gun you now possess.  Imported to Germany then sent our way.

The Manufacturer is/was either Armi San Marco (now defunct) or Pietta.  With the barrel stamped "Black Powder Only" I would venture 95% it's a Pietta.  When??  Dunno.  Have to look for the proof marks.

Welcome aboard.  Fun place to hang out here.

Offline Major 2

  • "Still running against the wind"
  • Deputy Marshal
  • Top Active Citizen
  • *
  • Posts: 12115
  • Cracker Cow Cavalry
Re: Picked Up a Hawes .44 "Navy" With Questions
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2019, 11:38:33 am »
Date code may be under the TG ..... I think ( I'm at work with out my book ) COM was on Armi San Marco ( as Mike suggested )
I don't think it is Pietta which would be FAP 

My first WAG  is Armi San Marco
  2nd WAG is Armi San Polo   :-\  I think I'll lean toward ASM ...but  :-\

If I could examine closer , are some little tell tales

Ive seen COM on Excam & FIE imported Navy Revolvers .
when planets align...do the deal !

Offline 103

  • Citizen
  • *
  • Posts: 7
Re: Picked Up a Hawes .44 "Navy" With Questions
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2019, 12:29:22 pm »
Thanks, gentlemen!

Yes, I know a .44 "Navy" is not a replica of anything that Colt ever made. That's why I put "Navy" in quotes.  ;)

I checked over the entire gun pretty thoroughly. I can find no proof marks anywhere.

Offline AntiqueSledMan

  • Active citizen
  • *
  • Posts: 41
Re: Picked Up a Hawes .44 "Navy" With Questions
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2019, 04:51:33 am »
Hello 103,

"COM : Contrini Officine Meccaniche di Contrini Giovanni, Gardone VT, via XXIV aprile"

https://thefiringline.com/forums/showthread.php?t=399140

Hope this helps, AntiqueSledMan.

Offline Major 2

  • "Still running against the wind"
  • Deputy Marshal
  • Top Active Citizen
  • *
  • Posts: 12115
  • Cracker Cow Cavalry
Re: Picked Up a Hawes .44 "Navy" With Questions
« Reply #5 on: December 13, 2019, 08:19:24 am »
Gardone VT in particular Brescia is a hot bed of mechanical workshops of firearms.

There is litterly cabin shops on nearly evey street & alley ....the back door of one opens to the back of another.....

Many artisins smiths have either worked for or do work for the bigger companies .....some where absorbed by the bigger guys when the smith went to them.

Parts may come from many shops.....

Example ...Remember the Uberti/COLT Iver Johnson produced Black Powder Series Gen2s & Signature series Gen 3s  ....when the 3 Gens were discontenued the raw parts went to ASM....ASM proceded to produce a replicant with the COLT address stamp on the barrel ( as the BPS & Sig's  Colts had had )  they were forced to stop by COLT for infringment.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2019, 09:38:01 am by Major 2 »
when planets align...do the deal !

Online Baltimore Ed

  • Top Active Citizen
  • *
  • Posts: 1212
Re: Picked Up a Hawes .44 "Navy" With Questions
« Reply #6 on: December 13, 2019, 09:24:36 am »
I want to say that my first c&b revolver was a Hawes. I had ordered a Hawes Colt, probably the 1860 but for some reason it got changed into the Remington?58. I eventually bought a used ruger old army. Don?t have either anymore.
"Give'em hell, Pike"
 There is no horse so dead that you cannot continue to beat it.

 

Menu Editor Pro 1.0.2 | Copyright 2014, Matthew Kerle