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Thread: Gasser Model 1870 11mm revolver

  1. #1
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    Default Gasser Model 1870 11mm revolver

    I've attached several photos of my Gasser Model 1870 11mm revolver and would like any comments on the various markings on the pistol, especially the two markings on the cylinder and right side of barrel just forward of the cylinder. Left side of pistol has legends L Gasser patent Wien Ottakring 157732 Gussstahl. Below cylinder L.G. Hanging apple pierced by arrow, Schutzmarke. All numbers match. Also, does anybody known of a source for a some ammo for this pistol? Thanks, George
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  2. #2
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    George
    I know nothing about these pistols, however I found a little information in Adameks' Pistols of World War I.
    This is the Gasser Model 1870 that was adapted by the Austro-Hungarian Cavalry. Its caliber is 11 mm Gasser, about 200,000 were manufactured and only 25,000 were procured by the military.
    The LG apple on the lower left frame is the Gasser trademark.
    Jan
    Jan C Still
    Site Owner - Operator

  3. #3
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    George,

    I would be careful making cartridges for this pistol since Gussstahl means CAST steel!!.
    I don't know the dimensions of your cylinder, but if it is like the Montenegrin revolver, I understand cases can be made out of modified 45 - 70 brass using a .445 dia. lead bullet of 282 - 313 grains. You should slug the barrel to come up with a bore diameter. If a true 11mm, You could use .429 dia lead bullets and possibly shorter 44 mag cases. Black powder would be the choice!! Cartridges are in the collector realm, so you should be prepared to experiment!! Hope this helps a little.

    Dave

  4. #4
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    George,
    your revolver is the model 1870/74 indicated by the word "Gussstahl". The previous
    model 1870 was made from cast iron and this material was too weak and was the reason
    to change the material.
    Though this revolver was the improved type, please use, as Dave already mentioned, only
    blck powder.
    Heinrich

  5. #5
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    Default Gasser 11mm revolver

    Hello George,
    Your Gasser revolver with 240mm barrel (instead of 184mm) marked with crowned NI (Nikola I, ruler of Montenegro 1860-1918) is obviously not a common M1870/74 army type revolver but rather the famous Gasser's Montenegrin pattern. This was originaly introduced in the early 1870s but your specimen was made circa 1900. Special markings on cylinder and barrel are supposed to be Turkish property marks.
    Cases can be easily made by reworking 7.62x54R Russian brass. Original lead bullets were 11.3mm diameter - .445 (according to an old Austrian Army manual), but a barrel I measured was 11.4mm groove diameter - .449, in which case I would be inclined to try a .451-452 lead bullet intended for .45 Colt.
    Kind regards,
    Jani

  6. #6
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    Default 11mm Gasser revolver

    Thanks to Jan, Dave, Heinrich and Jani for the replies. I'm pleased to find that the revolver is the Montenegran pattern with Turkish acceptance marks. I'll try to get 20 or so rounds from one of the vintage cartridge dealers but would appreciate anyone having a lead on anyone having the right cartridges available. Thanks

  7. #7
    Thalis Guest

    Thumbs up 11.3mm GASSER 1870 "Montenegrino" revolver

    G e n t l e m e n,

    I have really enjoyed your fascinating and based on solid technical and historical knolwedge discussion on www.gunboards.com concerning the antique and massive 11mm Gasser Montenegrin revolver. As I'm also a great fun of this awkward, huge and "ugly" (according to "Guns & Ammo") - yet technically innovative for its time and 100% solid - antique revolver, I hereby attach some photos of my recently aquired antique 11.3mm GASSER Mod. 1870 "Montenegrino" (or Montenegrin) revolver. It has been produced by cast steel (so-called: "GUSS STAHL") in 1870 by "Leupold Gasser Waffenfabrik" in Wien (then capital of the Austrohungarian Empire) and bears a very low S/N (i.e. #175#) which indicates early 1870 production. Its barrel's diameter measures 11mm and it bears a 23cm barrel and a 6 chambers' revolving turret, suitable for the 11.3mm x 51Rmm (Long) Montenegrin B.P. ammo, having a rim diameter of 11.5mm. As the 11mm GASSER Montenegrin revolver was invented by Leupold Gasser, whom was also granted the related patent in 1870, its main manufacturer has been the "Leupold Gasser Waffenfanrik" which was later transformed to "Rust & Gasser Waffenfabrik" (i.e. the company that produced later the better known antique 8mm Rust Gasser Mod. 1898 8 chambers' revolver up to the end of WW I). Due to huge orders for the 11mm Gasser Montenegrin revolver issued to "Leupold Gasser Waffenfabrik" not only by the civilians and Armed Forces of Montenegro (King Nikolai of Montenegro was one of the main stockholders in "Leupold Gasser Waffenfabrik" and is well known for issuing a one-of-a-kind legislative decret according to which each adult male citizen of Montenegro was obliged to bear at least 1 Montenegrin revolver with him anytime!!!), but also by the rest of the Balkan (Serbian, Greek, Bulgarian, Ottoman and Austrohungarian) Armies of the pre-WW I era, Gasser was unable to undertake all orders for Montenegrin revolvers and thus has been obliged to allow the production of Montenegrin revolvers to various well known and unknown Belgian and French gunmakers like Francotte, Lefacheux etc. This awkward situation has led to a total poduction of more than 200.000 - 220.000 (based on mere estimations) 11mm GASSER Mod. 1870/1874 "Montenegrino" revolvers by Leupold Gasser, Rust & Gasser, Lefacheux, Farncotte and many more small and unknown Belgian gunmakers for both civilian and army use up to the end of WW I. Under these production circumstances it can be easily understood why the 11mm Montenegrin ammo can only be typified under one of the following ammo categories: a) 11.2mm x 29.5mm, b) 11.3mm x 51Rmm, c) 11.3mm x 36Rmm, d) 11.75mm x 36mm "Short Montenegrin" and e) 11.75mm x 51mm "Long Montenegrin". The 11mm GASSER Mod. 1870/1874 "Montenegrino" revolver saw extensive military action during WW I mainly by the Autrohungarian Armed Forces (it has been issued as standard sidearm to the cavalry troopers) and it's also well known for being used not only by the mexican rebels under Pancho Villa's guidance during the US/Mexican war of 1916 (Pancho Villa bought by a famous american firearms' dealer of the early 20th century a confiscated by the US Governement firerams' load of more than 5.000 11mm Montenegrin revolvers that was going to be delivered in South America by sea and which had been previously modified in .44 S&W Russian CAL.), but also for the assassination of the King George I of Greece by a mad man firing 3 shots against the King in October 1912, a few days after Thessaloniki's liberation by the Greek Army during the 1st Balkan War. The 11.75mm x 51Rmm Montenegrin round is loaded with B.P. ONLY (always remember that the frames and barrels of the 11mm GASSER Mod. 1870/1874 "Montenegrino" revolvers are made of cast steel - the so-called: "GUSS STAHL" - based on obsolete late 19th century production methods) and is able to deliver a 312 grain lead bullet through its 23 - 24cm long rifled barrel to long distanced targets with excellent accuracy and slightly lower stopping power in comparaison to the .45 Long Colt. Shortened and trimmed .45-70 brass hulls seem to be the ideal base for producing handloaded 11.3mm Montenegrin B.P. ammo, but .44 S&W Russian and .44 S&W Special along with .45-50 Peabody brass is also a good base for reloading experimentation. Ready to fire 11mm Montenegrin B.P. ammo can be ordered by "STARS AND STRIPES AMMO" but is also occasionally available on firerams' auctions. Upon request I could post some very interesting links on this intriguing large bore and massive antique revolver, also to give you some tips on reloading the various configurations of the 11mm GASSER Montenegrin round which has been declared as obsolete ammo in US since 1986 according to the 2nd Amendement. I'll be glad and anxious to read your future comments on my posting...
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  8. #8
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    Thalis,

    Very nice write up and history lesson!!

    Dave

  9. #9
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    Gentlemen,

    I also am fascinatd by your very serious and intensive discussion on the Gasser M70. But the most impotant thing was not mentioned:

    Indroduced in the Austro-Hungarian Armed Forces (Army and Navy) in 1870, it was the most advanced and modern ordnance revolver of the period:

    Double Action and
    Center Fire

    Which country had this too in 1870? I do not know one.......

    A few corrections:

    Leopold Gasser instead of Leupold
    Rast & Gasser instead of Rust

    "Guss-Stahl" is the Austrian term for Bessemer steel, the most advanced steel production method of the second half of the 19th century. So the Guss-Stahl was not a inferior quality - on the contrary! This kind of steel was not the same as cast iron in steel.

    Barrel, cylinder and frame of the M70 were of iron, the main parts of the M70/47 was of this steel to prevent damages by too high pressure of the ammunition. The reason was simple: In the Austrian cavalry the Werndl carbine was chambered for the same round (11.2 x 36 R), but the charge was about the double amount. The carbine rounds had a gilding metal case and the revolver cartridges a brass case to prevent mix ups. Of course mix ups happened. This was the reason to introduce a steel frame. The second step was to introduce a shortened case in 1882 (11.2 x 29 R) to have a visual difference between the two ammo types in the cavalry. The load (and ballistics) of the revolver round remained the same, only the wad between charge and bullet (spacer) was rejected.

    That's it, fellow collectors! And do not forget: I am not an English native speaker!

    As ever
    George Roth alias Josef Moetz, author of the Austrian pistol book
    JM

  10. #10
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    Thalis, thanks for your very imformative presentation on your 11mm Gasser. I enjoyed comparing it to my Austrian-made 11mm revolver. Please do post the links for more information on these very interesting revolvers and ammo hints. I'm looking forward to getting some ammunition so I can fire mine a few times. I'd also be interested in any information about the Turkish markings on my revolver. George

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