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The Springfield Trapdoor Mod.1873


The following information is taken from: Desription and Rules for the Management of the Springfield Rifle, Carbine and Army Revolver, 1874.
During the year 1873, the Board of Officers appointed in pursuance of the "Act of Congress, - approved June 6, 1872 - for the purpose of selecting a breech system for the military service of the United States," reported in favor of the "Springfield" system. The minor details as to the caliber, form of chamber, ammunition, etc., were also determined by a Board of Ordnance Officers convened for that purpose. In the following pages will be found a full description of this system in all its details, as adopted by the War Department. The Springfield Rifle, Carbine .45", is essentually similar to the "Springfield Musket, Model 1870," which for some time past has been in the hands of troops for trial. The following changes have been made:
1st. The barrel has been made of low steel instead of iron, and the caliber has been reduced from .50" to .45". The rifling consists of three plain concentric grooves equal in width to the lands, .005" deep, with a uniform twist of one turn in twenty-two inches.
2nd. The lock plate has been reduced in thickness, and has no bevel on the edge.
3rd. A rounder shape has been given to the hammer.
4th. The heads of the tang screw, tumbler screw and side screws have been rounded off, and the side screws have been slightly shortened.
5th. A screw has been substituted for the rivet of the guard bow swivel.
6th. The shape of the rear sight has been changed, and it has been set further forward on the barrel.
7th. The metal parts of the rifle have been browned or blackened.
8th. The stock has been rounded off near the lock plate, and on its upper edges, as far forward as the lower band.
9th. A number of cannelures have been cut near the small end of the ramrod, in order to give a better grip to the fingers in using it.
10th. The shape of the upper band and of the gun sling swivel have been changed, and an open or stacking swivel has been added for the purpose of stacking arms without using the bayonet.