Brunswick Rifle - Design and Features

Design and Features

The Brunswick had a two groove barrel designed to accept a "belted" round ball. Like all rifles of the period, the Brunswick rifle suffered from the problem of being difficult to load. Rounds for rifles were required to fit tightly into the barrel so that the round would grip the rifling as it traveled down the barrel, imparting a spin to the round and improving its stability. Even though the rib and groove design of the Brunswick allowed it to use rounds that did not fit quite as tightly, the black powder used during this period would quickly foul the barrel, making even the Brunswick's design more and more difficult to load as the rifle was used.

Since the Brunswick used a round that was specifically designed to be mated with the grooves in the rifle, it had to be oriented properly in order to be loaded. This made the rifle difficult to load at night, when the grooves could not be seen.

The lock was originally a back action design, with the mainspring located behind the hammer. This design proved to be unpopular, as it weakened the wrist of the stock. Later Brunswick rifles featured a more conventional side action lock.

The stock was made of walnut, and featured a straight wrist and a low comb butt. A patch box with a hinged brass lid was located on the right side of the butt. Originally, the Brunswick rifle used a single compartment patch box. Later rifles used a slightly larger patch box with two compartments.

The ramrod pipes, trigger guard, and butt plate were all made of polished brass.

The rifle was designed to accept a sword type bayonet which mounted by use of a bayonet bar, similar to the design of that used on the Baker rifle. The bayonet bar was relocated further back due to problems that had been experienced with the Baker rifle.

The Brunswick rifle used a block front sight and a two position folding leaf rear sight which could be set for either 200 or 300 yards.

The rifle weighed approximately 9 to 10 lbs (depending on the pattern) without the bayonet attached.

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