View Full Version : Old Rolling Block

November 15, 2001, 12:58 PM
My buddy has an old Rolling Block type rifle. He needs info on what it might be and caliber possiblities.

It's a rolling block type action. The muzzle diameter measures .5". He says the breech measures .586" and the rim diameter is .687". He says it has some Eqyptian or Arabic markings on it. It is a long heavy gun.

Thanks for the help.


James K
November 16, 2001, 05:56 PM
The rolling block was a Remington design but other companies and government arsenals made them. Millions were made and they are fairly common. With the Arabic markings, I suspect yours might be in what is called .43 Egyptian. Value, in very good condition (most are in very bad condition) would be $200 or so. I recommend it be retired to a wall hanger; if one wants to fire it, it should be checked out by a gunsmith first.

The only source of ammo I know of is Olde Western Scrounger (www.ows-ammo.com); the price is $42.50 for 20, plus s&h.


Steven Mace
November 16, 2001, 08:41 PM

I think Jim has hit the nail on the head. You can also visit http://www.pcisys.net/~peregrine/Egypt/EgyptRem.htm for more information on the Egyptian Remington Rolling Block rifle. I imagine you won't find .43 Egyptian (a.k.a. 11.43x50Rmm) ammunition on your local gunshops shelf. I'm sure the people at Old Western Scrounger will be happy to take an order. But Jim is right, take the rifle to your favorite gunsmith before attempting to fire it anymore. Hope this helps!

Steve Mace

James K
November 17, 2001, 09:29 PM
Between the Spanish and South American 7mm's and the .43 Egyptians coming in by the ton, often as ship ballast, the importers had RB's coming out their ears in the late 1950's. Most were junk, many missing stocks and internal parts. They had so many that when Potomac Arms in Alexandria put in a new parking lot, they put RB barrelled actions in the concrete - RB's (rolling blocks) were cheaper than RB's (reinforcing bars).


November 18, 2001, 01:53 PM
The bore is rotten, but the action looks good, and the extractor looks really similar to a .45-70 RB extractor. I'm having mine refinished and rebarreled to .45-70, as a long range Creedmoor for blackpowder cartridge use only. Something to think about if the action is deemed suitable by a gunsmith...

November 19, 2001, 09:36 AM
Thanks for the info. He traded traded it this weekend at the gun show for 2 .357 Ruger Blackhawks in their boxes.

James K
November 19, 2001, 08:41 PM
Well, he got one heckuva deal as far as I can see! Can I hang around him and see if some of it rubs off?

Conversion to .45-70 is entirely feasible, though some extractor work is required. That action, even given the materials of the time, is strong enough for some pretty hot loads, much more than the trapdoor will take. (Although the trapdoor is stronger than it looks; most people don't realize how it really works.)