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Lloyd3 Offline OP
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What's the general opinion here of rebounding versus non-rebounding hammers?

I assume you just have-to get used to bringing the gun back to half-cock before opening? From a hunting perspective, I suppose it does slow one down a skosh when needing to reload, but...really, aren't we're talking relative speed in a low to no-speed situation? From my clearly-unfamiliar perspective (my last hammer was rebounding), I see non-rebounding hammers in about the same light that I see a Jones underlever. Both work just fine, but both require time and familiarity to become proficient, eh? On a trap range I'd guess it's really a non-issue, but on a dove field, how much is one giving up in reloading time over a rebounding-hammer equipped gun?

Next question: do non-rebounding hammers cock more easily (from half-cock) than rebounding hammers? Are you giving anything up by going with the rebounding option?

Last edited by Lloyd3; 05/06/22 03:49 PM.
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Originally Posted by Lloyd3
What's the general opinion here of rebounding versus non-rebounding hammers?

I assume you just have-to get used to bringing the gun back to half-cock before opening? From a hunting perspective, I suppose it does slow one down a skosh when needing to reload, but...really, aren't we're talking relative speed in a low to no-speed situation? From my clearly-unfamiliar perspective (my last hammer was rebounding), I see non-rebounding hammers in about the same light that I see a Jones underlever. Both work just fine, but both require time and familiarity to become proficient, eh? On a trap range I'd guess it's really a non-issue, but on a dove field, how much is one giving up in reloading time over a rebounding-hammer equipped gun?

Next question: do non-rebounding hammers cock more easily (from half-cock) than rebounding hammers? Are you giving anything up by going with the rebounding option?

I view re-bounding hammers as much safer. I may be mistaken, but non-rebounding hammers is much like an old Colt Single Action Army, if you carry a live round under the hammer you risk a sharp blow or dropping the gun causing the gun to fire.


I have become addicted to English hammered shotguns to the detriment of my wallet.
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Lloyd, received my Spring DGJ today and after scanning it I wanted to warn you that, in light of your current fever, you open it at your peril. 😉

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Lloyd3 Offline OP
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FallCreekFan: Great! Even more temptations.

Did up a list of my lesser (& less-used) ordinance and will start to unearth them shortly. The good news here is that back-up, wet-day, and even beginner/loaner guns all seem to have a little more value these days. The bigger problem is that several reside in a different time-zone (stashed at family & friend's houses over the years to facilitate hunting trips back to the ancestral home). This will take the time it takes, I suppose. The better part of that is re-discovering all the unique terminologies associated with the breed, such as "snail-type percussion fences w/coves", "nipples", "lever-releases", "cross-pin fasteners", & the "noses, ears, necks, breasts & stop pins" of the hammers themselves. I also have a secret weapon, that was purchased years ago for just such an occasion...

[Linked Image from i.imgur.com]

I have clearly been thinking about this for a while now.

url=https://imgur.com/nCNjd4q][Linked Image from i.imgur.com][/url]

It looks like Diggory might take umbrage with my earlier assertion.

Last edited by Lloyd3; 05/06/22 06:48 PM.
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Originally Posted by Chantry
Originally Posted by Lloyd3
What's the general opinion here of rebounding versus non-rebounding hammers?

I assume you just have-to get used to bringing the gun back to half-cock before opening? From a hunting perspective, I suppose it does slow one down a skosh when needing to reload, but...really, aren't we're talking relative speed in a low to no-speed situation? From my clearly-unfamiliar perspective (my last hammer was rebounding), I see non-rebounding hammers in about the same light that I see a Jones underlever. Both work just fine, but both require time and familiarity to become proficient, eh? On a trap range I'd guess it's really a non-issue, but on a dove field, how much is one giving up in reloading time over a rebounding-hammer equipped gun?

Next question: do non-rebounding hammers cock more easily (from half-cock) than rebounding hammers? Are you giving anything up by going with the rebounding option?

I view re-bounding hammers as much safer. I may be mistaken, but non-rebounding hammers is much like an old Colt Single Action Army, if you carry a live round under the hammer you risk a sharp blow or dropping the gun causing the gun to fire.

Both rebounding and non rebounding are equally safe IF used properly. Both have a half cock notch the sear settles into. Only difference is the rebounder automatically moves into the safe position. The non rebounder has to be pulled into the half cock notch. These notches also serve as intercepting Sears—if the hammers accidentally fall from full cock without the trigger being pulled then the sear will stop the hammer fall as the sear slides into the half cock notch.

The rebounder is much more convenient since the hammer automatically retract, allowing the barrels to be opened. The non retractor requires the shooter to first manually put the gun on half cock before opening. Forgetting to do that can result in a broken firing pin.

The non rebounder I own is much easier to cock from half cock than a non rebounder. Just like how a compound bow works, the tumblers have cammed over at half cock and there is little resistance remaining in the mainspring.

Bottom line: non rebounders, invented by Stanton in 1868, are much more convenient and faster than non rebounders. But I find both attractive. The non rebounder just continues the same mechanics that had been in use for several hundred years. I think they are sexy.


It ain't whether you hit a bird that matters, it's the fun you have even if you don't.
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Bravo. 😎

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Lloyd3 Offline OP
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Joe Wood: Thank you for that! I suspected that might be the case. So...non-rebounders set at half-cock might just be the ticket for the oft-encountered "snap-shots" seen in lots of upland hunting situations? And, much-like what you mentioned earlier here, when hunting alone and in a very gamey situation, my hammers used to be in the "hot" position as well. Sometimes that even worked.

Last edited by Lloyd3; 05/07/22 12:49 PM.
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There is little art more beautiful than a perfectly sculpted hammer. This one belongs to a Williams & Powell, Liverpool. Circa 1873.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]


……..unless it’s a perfectly sculpted action as on this Thomas Johnson, Swaffham, Norfolk. 1869? This gun is #3 of a garniture (set of three) and made by Joseph Brazier, Ashes and the only gun I have seen made by Brazier.

The really neat thing about hammer guns made up to the mid 1880’s is that you will never see an identical gun unless it was made as a set. The gun was rapidly evolving and also the individual artisans took great liberties in creating their work. Remember, every single piece was hand made and unique, there was no stock factory making interchangeable or cast parts.

Notice the very percussion cups on the head of the hammers. The cutout was for percussion caps—when fired any fragments from the cap were supposed to blow out through them. This design hung on for a few years into the breech loading era.


[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

Last edited by Joe Wood; 05/07/22 11:50 AM.

It ain't whether you hit a bird that matters, it's the fun you have even if you don't.
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Joe, you have the best hammers. They are gorgeous.


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I am not advocating walking about with a cocked hammer gun. The reasons are obvious and are the same reasons that indicate that walking about with a cocked hammerless gun with the safety on is just as dangerous and risky.

But when in an active hunting phase, such as standing at a spot when pass shooting or behind a dog on point or about to flush game, I think it is reasonably safe to cock the hammers. Naturally the hammers will be lowered and the gun opened when the active phase is over. And this brings us to actions that allow opening the gun when the hammers are cocked. Not all top lever hammer guns allow that. Side pedal and underlever actions do, as do very few top lever guns. It seems safer and wiser to lower the hammers on an open action.

Last edited by Shotgunlover; 05/07/22 05:00 AM.
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