Dutch Beaumont-Viteli M1871/78 Rifle

Created on January 3rd 2017

In really fine condition a Dutch Beaumont-Vitali Bolt Action Rifle

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This interesting well preserved rifle is chambered in 11.3 x 51R.  It is a conversion from the single shot, Dutch, bolt action Beaumont rifle to a magazine fed rifle.  The magazine holds four rounds.  Overall this rifle is  46″ in length, having been shortened at some stage of its early life.  However, the job has been done in an extremely professional manner, with fine crowning and therefore, presumed to be of the period.  It would be a terribly costly exercise to completely reject a rifle with minor damage and a decision has obviously been taken for remedial work to be applied to save the balance of the weapon.

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The barrel is  26.3/4″ long and the trigger pull is  13.5/8″ to center.  The majority of the rifle is “in the white” with only the later addition of the magazine to apparently show any browning normally associated with an original blued finish.  The barrel is secured by two barrel bands, beyond these is the nose cap which has a hole for the cleaning rod, in position.  The mid band is secured by a spring.  The barrel starts in form as a hexagon (behind the rear sights) the balance is round.  The bore is in extremely fine condition with superb, sharply edged lands.  There is only a minimal degree of very shallow corrosion visible to the eye.  The rear sights are graduated to 1800 meters but only have elevation adjustment.  The sight picture is an open V, the front being an inverted V on a block.

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There are multiple markings upon the rifle at many points.  This indicates the varied history that the rifle has been through.  Visible are proof and view markings for both its life as a single shot and then as a magazine feeder.  The main marking upon the breech is as follows “P.STEVENS/MASSTRICHT”.  The numerals “386″ show up on many of the main working parts of the bolt assembly and action, this is either an assembly number or a batch number.  One of the more interesting design features of the Beaumont bolt is the main spring that acts upon the firing pin is actually housed within the two part bolt handle!  needless to say all the machined parts are excellent fit and finish.  There are two gas escape holes in the breech ring which are drilled at such an angle to direct any gas blast forwards, away from the shooters face and eyes.

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There is a magazine cut-off switch to the rear LHS of the action but no safety catch.  The hexagonal portion of the barrel displays many more numbers and inspection marks including a very clear “1875″ and the numerals “3788″ the later being repeated on the upper tang of the butt-plate.  Also on the tang the number 1889 is visible. The rear of the trigger guard has a feature often associated with items from the Netherlands, that is the concave sweep to the rear of the guard.  The plumb brown magazine is also built in a spectacularly sculptural maner.

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The rifle is fully stocked in a European walnut which has survived the trials of military life admirably. On the LHS of the butt is a fine cartouche dated 1875 with a large central “W”.  The balance of the stocks surface has a very pleasing patina to it only achievable through the passage of time.  The rifle has two sling swivels.  An excellent rifle in equally great condition which would grace any long gun collection.

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£ 650.

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