View Full Version : Spencer repeater help requested

Short round
October 10, 2009, 06:16 AM
Spencer SN 13XXX.
32" barrel, caliber 56/46 (SWAG), ~452" bore, 6 groove rifling, chamber is for a bottleneck type rimfire cartridge. fixed sights. Under the barrel is what looks like a cleaning rod holder without the thimbles to hold the rod. It runs full length of the barrel. No sign of ever having a cleaning rod.
The stock is of the carbine style. However,there is no end cap on the forearm. The butt stock has what appears to be a saddle ring mount but no saddle ring.
The rifle has been well used but taken care of. The buttstock is cracked and has been repaired with brass pins. Gouges in the wood indicate a blunt instrument impact, large and heavy knife or simliar. A brass plate on the buttstock, used as part of the crack repair, has a name crudely scratched on it.
Thanks in advance for any info.

Shortround out

October 10, 2009, 08:20 AM
The cartridge is most likely the 56-46 show in picture 15 here (http://members.shaw.ca/cartridge-corner/idpics2.htm).

James K
October 10, 2009, 08:00 PM
A picture would help, but here is some info about additions to the Spencer.

In 1871, Springfield Armory converted 1109 Spencer carbines to a two-band rifle-musket configuration including a cleaning rod; the regular Spencer rifle had no cleaning rod and had three barrel bands. Caliber was .56-50. They had 32 1/2" barrels.

After the Civil War, the government sold off Spencers for as little as $1.65, and veterans were allowed to buy them for $10 (rifle-muskets, revolvers and other carbines were only $6, showing the high regard with which the Spencer was held by the men who used it in combat). So there were a lot around and gunsmiths did all kinds of custom jobs including adding a shotgun barrel (often percussion) under the original barrel. Others, including the famed Hawken company, added thimbles and a cleaning rod and altered the foreend accordingly.

Some collectors call such alterations "foragers" and imply that they were army issue, but that is not the case.