BUFFINGTON MAGAZINE GUN
This gun belongs to the system in which a fixed chamber is closed by a movable breech-block, sliding and rotating, and operated by a lever from below. The receiver, to which the barrel is attached in the usual way, has a vertical slot entirely through it for the reception of the breech-block, and two grooves, at right angles to each other, on the inner surface of each side. In these grooves the flattened ends of pivots passing through the breech-block slide. The various points of the breech-block not in the axes of the pivots, thus describe arcs of ellipses when the block is opened or closed. The block is hollowed out to receive the hammer, mainspring, etc. The hammer is slotted to receive one branch of the mainspring which abuts against a pin. The other branch bears against a similar pin through the breech-block. The piece is locked by lugs projecting from pieces screwed to the sides of the receiver, partly across its top and entering grooves on the hammer.
The firing-pin is retracted, when the block is unlocked or the hammer cocked, by a slot which receives the head of the pin. The extractor is a bent spring hook secured at its rear to the breech-block by a pin and supported at its front by a pivot. In order to open the block, it is necessary to draw back the hammer to a point a little beyond the full cock, and then control the motion by a lever. Should the hammer be let down while the block is open, it is cocked in the act of closing by the edges of a surface striking on projections on the inner rear surface of the receiver. The magazine is in the tip-stock. It is provided with two cartridge stop-springs. The carrier is made of sheet steel brought to a spring temper, and is secured to the breech-block by a pivot. When the breech-block is closed the carrier-block descends, its spring keeping it in contact with the breech-block, bears down on a stop-spring, and slides under the end of the magazine-tube. As it passes under the tube inclined planes raise the ends of a crosspiece riveted to the top-spring, when a cartridge is forced by the magazine-spring into the carrier. A cut-off enables the piece to be used as a single-loader. As a magazine gun, three motions are necessary to operate, viz., opened, closed, fired. As a single-loader, four motions are necessary, viz., open, loaded, "closed, fired. This gun carries six cartridges in the magazine and one in the chamber.
Farrow, Edward S. American Small Arms; a Veritable Encyclopedia of Knowledge for Sportsmen and Military Men. New York: Bradford, 1904. Print.
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