Westley Richards .500 Nitro Express

Discussion in 'Double Rifles' started by redriverjake, Nov 14, 2018.

  1. Pondoro

    Pondoro AH Fanatic

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  2. Russ-F

    Russ-F AH Senior Member

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    There’s no spelling mistake as regards ‘TONS’ (TCNS). It’s a single multi-letter stamp which can become a bit worn or chipped in places & that’s what’s happened here with the O looking like a C.
     

  3. Russ-F

    Russ-F AH Senior Member

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    There’s nothing to suggest it’s anything other than a normal 3” chambered .500 NE

    The pressure displayed is the service pressure - not the pressure the proof rounds produced. It’s correct for the normal .500 x 3” NE load.

    After 1954 proof marks normally displayed just the service pressure which a firearm was proofed for rather than the shot charge or bullet weight/powder charge. Plus of course nominal bore size & chamber length.

    Here’s one example cribbed from the Lewis Drake website showing post 1954 marks on a .375 H&H

    0BD30277-0951-476E-AADB-52213D5BFA77.jpeg
     
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  4. Thomas Rutledge

    Thomas Rutledge AH Member

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  5. Russ-F

    Russ-F AH Senior Member

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    Thomas,
    Your gun was reproved in 1994 under different rules of proof to the Westley Richards .500 which this thread relates to.

    The British proof regulations started to change from 1984 to allow the use of metric units & proof marking conventions - one aspect of which was the adoption of the actual ‘proof pressure’ being marked on the barrels rather than the ‘service pressure’. However guns could still be optionally proofed until 1989 using the imperial measures including the ‘service pressure’. For example a shotgun of mine was made in 1986 & was marked with the service pressure in tons.

    In general terms if a Birmingham or London proofed / reproofed gun has imperial measure marks (i.e. Tons) then the indicated pressure will be the ‘service’ pressure (i.e. the working pressure). If the gun was proofed or reproofed after 1989 & the pressure markings are in metric units then it will be the actual ‘proof pressure’ that’s indicated.

    This does not in itself change the allowable ammunition of course - it’s just different ways of marking the proof procedure.

    Frankly the vast majority of double rifles were made & proofed using the imperial measures & thus marked with the service pressure. This of course includes the .500 x 3” NE rifle featured in this thread.

    So to simplify even more: ‘Tons’ = service/working pressure.
     
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  6. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    So to answer the riddle, the proof mark of the script for 2840 bar is the crossed swords, V-2-C. That is the 1994 Birmingham proof marks.

    According to @Russ-F , in 1994 they were using Proof pressure. The 2840 bar translates to 41480.79 PSI.

    The Kynoch 1902-1903 Original Ballistics for the 577 x 3 inch Nitro Express using 100gr of Cordite and a 750 grain bullet out of a 30" proof barrel at an observed 2100fps was at 15.0 tons per square inch. That would translate to 33,600psi.

    So if my math and assumptions, coupled with @Russ-F 's claims, the PSI of 41,480 Proof Pressure would greatly exceed the service pressure of PSI 33,600 meaning it if in good working order, the gun is able to handle a full 577 NE load.

    *Always check your sources yourself, do not rely on my statements.
     

  7. Thomas Rutledge

    Thomas Rutledge AH Member

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    Really an academic question. I would never shoot a full nitro load in my 10.5 lb rifle. I would consider spicing up the load a bit to improve my regulated load but I am pretty close now.

    Thanks, Tom
     

  8. rookhawk

    rookhawk AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    You didn’t say it was your 10.5lb .577 black powder express rifle in the picture. No, you wouldn’t want to shoot a .577 NE load out of a 10.5 lb gun made in the black powder era.

    :)
     
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  9. 450/400

    450/400 AH Member

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    This is a photo of my 1955 Westley Richards ‘White Hunter’ proof and re-proof marks. IMG_2492.JPG
     
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  10. Thomas Rutledge

    Thomas Rutledge AH Member

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    Great looking ride! More pictures for us to drool over?

    Tom
     

  11. 450/400

    450/400 AH Member

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    Just a few quick photos. Don’t want to hijack someone else’s thread. IMG_2941.JPG IMG_2942.JPG IMG_2943.JPG
     

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