SOLD FOR: $3,358.33
Make: Adams’s Small Arms Co.
Model: Mark III, Model of 1872
Serial Number: 7025
Year of Manufacture: Ca. 1873
Caliber: .450 Adams
Action Type: 6-Shot Single/Double Action Cartridge Revolver
Barrel Length: 6″, Octagonal
Sights/ Optics: The front sight is a quarter-round blade integral to a base that is dovetailed into the barrel. The rear sight is a “V”-notch integral to a rise in the top-strap.
Stock Configuration & Condition/ Grip: The grip is one-piece checkered walnut. There are a few little dings and scrapes. There are some little scratches and some compressions. The defects have darkened with age. There are areas of rub wear that have caused smooth spots to the checkering, but the checkering is mostly strong. Overall, the grip is in Fine condition as Antique.
Type of Finish: Blue
Finish Originality: Original
Bore Condition: The bore is semi-bright and the rifling is strong where not interrupted by erosion. There are a few small spots of pitting and erosion. In my opinion, the bore rates 6 out of 10.
Most antique firearms have bores that will show erosion. This is not only due to age but to the use of black powder. When fired, black powder reacts corrosively. NRA Antique Firearm Conditions Standards are quite lenient for bores. In some cases the NRA standards disregarded the bore’s condition for collectors firearms.
Overall Condition: The revolver retains about 65% of its metal finish. The grip portion of the frame, barrel portion of the frame, cylinder, cylinder pin, and trigger guard are serial matching. There are some scattered nicks, dings, and scratches in the metal. There is finish wear on the edges. There are scattered areas of mottled patina, thinning, finish loss, and oxidation. There are some scattered spots of oxidation, light scabbing, and erosion. There is finish wear on the edges. There are some scattered light holding marks. There is operational wear. The screw heads range from sharp to tool marked with strong slots. The markings are clear. Overall, this revolver is in Very Good condition as Antique.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The cylinder locks up with very light side-to-side play when the trigger is depressed. We have not fired this revolver. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance requirements.
Box Paperwork and Accessories: None.
Our Assessment: The first centerfire cartridge service revolver officially adopted by the British War Department was the Adams Mark I, a conversion of the percussion Adams-Beaumont revolver devised by John Adams, brother of Robert Adams who had helped design the original revolver. The Mark I was chambered in .450 Adams, a black powder cartridge not dissimilar to the later .455 Webley. The later Mark II was a purpose-built cartridge revolver that borrowed heavily from the percussion design and finally the Mark III was devloped which incorporated a new ejector rod housed in the cylinder pin which could be swiveled out to punch out spent casings. This is one such Mark III revolver and it looks great! It has a lot of finish left, nice grips, and good mechanics. The bore is punching above its weight class for a gun of this age that was used with black powder, it is in surprisingly good shape. The British military designated these the Adams Model / 1872, Mk III Service Revolver. During the period 1872-1880 Army Officers were required to purchase their own arms, and this was the Standard British Army Revolver for the Ashanti and Zulu Wars, replaced in 1881. This will be a great addition to any antique or British martial arms collection. Please see our photos and good luck!
Some are hot, some are not, but thankfully most can be shot!