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Webley MK VI (1915) Any information about markings


Manxman3

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Dear Sirs,

I have recently purchased this Webley MK VI (1915) after finding out that my Grandad carried a Webley MK VI revolver from the same year in WW1. I would very much appreciate any information anyone can give me regarding the history of this particular gun and its markings. I hope I will be able to post the photos I have attempted to upload with this post. I have attached photos of nearly all the markings

Pictures

Thankyou in advance for any help and advice you may be able to offer me. If you scroll down the page the photos are now clearly viewable.

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is it finger trouble here at my end or is anyone having trouble opening or extracting these pics.john

It's not just you John; I can't open them either

Andy

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They download fine when I click on them

It may be that the links refer to shortcuts on your computer which is why you can open them???

Andy

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Yes Andy you are right I think. I had to compress them and save them on Desktop as it wouldn't upload the original. Its late here, but will try to get it done tomorrow if I can figure out how to do it. Sorry

post-78534-0-19806700-1321667240.jpg

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The first photo has the date of '15, then a (Crown / GR / crossed flags) Proof, then the WD 'broad arrow' and a Sparkbrook (Crown / B / E3) inspection mark.

post-52604-0-91644400-1321673365.jpg

The other photos #4,5,7 show some later inspection marks that were applied by various BSA (Birmingham Small Arms) inspectors (ie. Crown / 24 / 13 )

Photo #6 is another Proof mark while photo #2 is a civilian commercial proof that was done much later in the post-WW2 period IIRC - I'm not totally sure.?

Cheers, S>S

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Thanks for that SS. Any other info anyone can give me would be much appreciated.

I also now have another issue with the gun. Up until this morning it was in perfect 'dry firing' operational order. However for some reason this morning, if I pull the trigger back with my thumb to cock it for some reason it's not cocking. It will still dry fire using the trigger but I liked doing it with my thumb :blink: There's no apparent reason why it has stopped doing this since last night other than it didn't like having its photo taken. Any ideas?

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Thanks for that SS. Any other info anyone can give me would be much appreciated.

I also now have another issue with the gun. Up until this morning it was in perfect 'dry firing' operational order. However for some reason this morning, if I pull the trigger back with my thumb to cock it for some reason it's not cocking. It will still dry fire using the trigger but I liked doing it with my thumb :blink: There's no apparent reason why it has stopped doing this since last night other than it didn't like having its photo taken. Any ideas?

I think it's pretty certain you'll damage the hammer or recoil plate - if you haven't already - if you keep dry firing without a snap-cap or fired case to absorb the impact. I don't think many people would recommend the practice - it's meant to be done with rounds in it!

Cocking in single-action (thumb cocking) is controlled by a bent (notch) on the toe of the hammer engaging with the 'nose' on the rear of the trigger which acts as a sear in that mode. If the nose had broken, double-action wouldn't work either, so I'm wondering about your trigger spring, or whether some crud has got in to prevent full movement?

Regards,

MikB

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Thanks MikB. Its deactivated so that no rounds can be put in the chamber. I didn't realise you shouldn't 'dry fire'. I like doing it when politicians come on TV etc. Its half the reason I bought it! Would any gunsmith be able to fix it or am I going to have to take it to a specialist?. I'm in Hertfordshire.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Most of the stamps on your pistol have already been explained, but I will attempt to expand on the comments made.

The first "'15" is of course the date that the pistol was accepted for service, and the crossed pennants show that it passed military proof. The Broad Arrow is the government ownership mark and the "Crown B E5" is the stamp of the inspector who accepted it. The block capital "B" shows that the inspector was based at Birmingham and his number was E5.

".455 .760 6 Tons..." is the commercial proof applied at the Birmingham Proof House when the pistol entered the civilian market, and the "NP" means "Nitro Proof". "6 Tons" is the proof pressure the gun withstood. The crossed swords with ? at 9 o'clock, B at 3 o'clock and 11 at 6 o'clock are part of the Birmingham commercial proof. "11" is the inspector's number and if I could read the left hand letter it would give the year of proof.

The other inspection marks with a script "B" were applied subsequently by an Inspector based at Sparkbrook, probably when the pistol was repaired or refurbished. Sparkbrook was a Royal Ordnance Factory from 1886 until 1906 when it was purchased by BSA.

That is about it, pretty much all the stamps one would expect to find with nothing unusual.

Regards

TonyE

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I am absolutely sure that it saw service in WWI. Webley could never make enough Mark VI or S.L. pistols during the war and there is some quite acrimonious correspondence between the Ministry of Munitions, Admiralty and Webley about delays etc.

It was because of this that we purchased so many pistols from abroad, not just the Colt and S & Ws, but also the Spanish Old Pattern revolvers.

I cannot imagine that a Mark VI accepted into the service in 1915 was not issued!

Regards

TonyE

Edit: I should have added in my previous post that the ".760" in the commercial proof is the case length in inches.

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  • 9 years later...

What a beautiful revolver.

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