Sunday, June 30, 2013

Items in the Williamsburg Dewitt Museum

England, ca. 1650

A new form of flintlock was developed early in the seventeenth century. In this design, the steel and the pan cover were combined into one piece. Many variations in the mechanical details of these locks occurred over the next half-century in an ongoing effort to make them stronger, faster, safer, more convenient, and less expensive. While the snaphaunce form of lock continued to be favored by Spanish and Italian gunsmiths, Northern Europeans adopted this new lock type almost exclusively.

"Dog" refers to the small catch used to hold the cock in a safety position. In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, locks with this mechanism generally were called "ketch (catch) locks".

Could be made relatively weatherproof
Fast ignition
Relatively simple mechanism
Quick to cock

Photos supplied by Ken Gahagan.