Pond .32 Rimfire Revolver

Lucius Pond was one of 4 major manufacturers successfully sued by Rollin White on behalf of Smith & Wesson, for infringing on White’s patent (exclusively licensed to S&W) of the bored-through cylinder. Pond had designed a hinged-frame .32 caliber rimfire revolver with some good and bad qualities, and made in excess of 5,000 of them. More than 4,000 of that number had to be turned over to S&W at wholesale cost, however, when he lost the patent suit in 1862. Those guns (including this particular example) were marked ”Manufactured for Smith & Wesson”, and resold for a nice markup by S&W.

Pond would go on to design a very jerry-rigged alternative design using removable chambers. This did avoid the Rollin White patent, but was quite awkward to use, and predictably failed to catch on commercially.

Hi guys thanks for tuning in to another Video on Forgotten weapons calm I mean I Am here today at the Rock Island auction House I’m taking a look at some of the Guns that they’re going to be selling in Their upcoming June of 2016 regional Auction and one that they have is this Very nice-looking Pond revolver Now the pond is one of the guns that was Involved in this deep and interesting Story of Rowling White’s patent so just The the quick details on the background Of this Rowling was a gun designer who Invented kind of a pretty mediocre lousy Revolver but in the process he managed To get a patent on the drilled through Cylinder the idea that you’d have a hole Going all the way through the cylinder From front to back now when he patented This the common guns at the time were Muzzle loaders and the drilled through Cylinder was not something anyone would Actually want however he ended up having That patent during the dawn of cartridge Revolvers he sold a license to it Uniquely to Smith & Wesson Smith & Wesson used this to great effect they Basically monopolized the cartridge Revolver market for the first number of Years of its life well just because Smith & Wesson had this licensed patent Doesn’t mean that everybody else was Just going to give up there were a wide Number of basically just patent

Infringement cases people who thought That this patent was ludicrous that There’s no way someone could patent a Feature like that or people that noted That this had already been patented a Long time ago in Europe and was now Expired and a lot of people didn’t like This idea so some of them just went Ahead and made their own revolvers now Smith & Wesson’s agreement with while Rowan white required that he follow up And file lawsuits against anybody who Infringed on their on the patent and he Did that ultimately by the way he spent Most of the royalty money he got having To defend patent infringement suits or Filed patent infringement suits and Ended up not not particularly well-off For this whole debacle anyway Lucius W Pond was one of these designers who Infringed on Ron white patent he Designed this six shot Tip up 32 caliber rimfire revolver Started making them in 1861 was promptly Sued by rollin white and Smith & Wesson In 1862 and lost the case you know on The merits of the case it’s pretty much An open-and-shut deal As a result pond had to turn over his Production of guns to Smith and Wesson So pond didn’t have to just give his Guns to Smith & Wesson he was able to Actually sell them to Smith & Wesson but At a reduced price Smith & Wesson bought

Just under 45 hundred of these guns for About seven dollars and 80 cents apiece Smith & Wesson then resold them Themselves they were remarked as being Manufactured for Smith & Wesson and they Were sold for 12 to 13 dollars depending On barrel lengths so ultimately you know Things could have been worse for pond he Presumably at least was able to make Back the money that he had spent Manufacturing these guns if not able to Make any profit on them now it’s Interesting there are a couple other Versions a couple other guns that pond Started making just before the patent Infringement suit he actually developed A version of this gun in the 44 Henry Rimfire cartridge which would have been A really interesting gun could have had Some actual some significant market Repercussions that would have been one Of the most powerful rimfire guns Rimfire revolvers on the market at the Time and it would been very interesting To have a revolver chambered for the Same ammunition that was able to be used In this new and very cutting-edge Henry Rifle he was able to reinforce his latch Mechanism such that apparently his 44 Caliber rimfire –hz were durable enough For sustained use however only a handful Of them were manufactured before this Patent infringement suit and because They worked the same way as this 32 that

Was cut off so instead in 1863 pond put Together one of the less successful Workaround type designs he developed a 32 caliber pistol that used removable Chamber sleeves and you’d pull the Sleeve out you put a cartridge in that And then you’d put that back Chamber it was really a pretty Jerry-rigged sort of system and it Didn’t do all that well although was Manufactured until 1870 so why don’t we Take a closer look at this guy because For all the interest of the other Versions that the subject of this video Is in fact the original 32 Pond so the Pond 32 is a tip-up design now you may Be thinking yourself didn’t Smith & Wesson do tip-up revolvers at first yes They did However the Smith & Wesson tip-up guns Had a hinge up here where pond put the Hinge back here and ponds version Actually worked a lot better the Smith’s This was one of the reasons that the Smith and Wesson revolvers were Restricted to fairly small cartridges Was because this wasn’t a very strong Hinge pond did it better Worked great in the 32 and reportedly Even worked in the 44 rimfire now to Open the gun we have a spring-loaded Button here which pushes out this catch Push that and then the barrel assembly Tips up that allows you to take your

Cartridge your empty cases out reload it Clean the gun whatever you need to do if You need to completely disassemble the Two you pull this screw out and that Separates the two halves completely now If we look at the mechanical functioning First off it’s interesting to note that We have this recessed shield that the Cylinder sits in this is going to help Protect the shooter in case you have a Ruptured cartridge this prevents the gas From coming back and acts as a shield For the hand that’s a nice safety Feature you’ll see coming up there Aren’t a whole lot of other safety Features on this gun which is something That pond probably could have done Better At any rate inside here we have our Firing pin These are rimfire pistols so you’ve got A big blade style firing pin there we Have a cylinder lock down here and a Hand that comes out of that little slot When you work the hammer so when I The hammer you can see the hand comes Out here that’s going to grab on the Ratchets of the cylinder to rotate it One position and then we also have Down here a cylinder locking catch right There that is going to lock into these Notches that prevents the cylinder from Rotating out of position and then when You pull the trigger the firing pin

Drops like that upon cocking it you can See that the cylinder lock goes down so That allows the cylinder to move while The hand is pushing on it just for Convenience sake the pond actually came With its own disassembly screwdriver Threaded into the base of the grip they Got that there nice little handy thing This would also work as an ejector rod If you had a sticky cartridge case that You had to push out of the cylinder you Could do it with that but you’d have to Remove the cylinder first now I Mentioned the lack of safeties the main One is that there’s no half notch On this hammer it’s either down or it’s All the way back and ready to fire and When it’s ready to fire it has this Sheath type trigger without a trigger Guard the second safety issue is that When this hammer is down it’s resting Directly on a cartridge so that is full Forward travel it doesn’t have any sort Of rebounding mechanism this is Definitely a gun if you are going to Carry it you would want to carry it on An empty chamber if you actually carried This with a hammer down on a live Cartridge the hammer would stick up Slightly because it be sitting on the Rim and a good blow to the back of the Hammer would fire it so not a good thing That’s something that’s utterly Unacceptable

Today in gun design and pun wasn’t ahead Of his time on this but that’s something That could have been improved you’ll Notice this does have a brass frame the Pend revolvers were made with both brass And steel frames now lastly we can take A look at the markings here on the top Of the barrel we have LW pend Worcester Massachusetts and his 1860 patent for The basic design of the gun and on the Side here we have the marking that was Added after the lawsuit manufacturers Manufactured for Smith & Wesson patent April 3rd 1855 Our serial number here is on the base of The grip this is number four four five Six there were a substantial number of These guns made more than 5000 of them You do have numbers on several of the Other parts as well the cylinder axis And the barrel both have matching Numbers there thanks for watching guys I Hope you enjoyed the video I really like Taking a look at all of these guns that Were wrapped up in this rollin white Patent debacle because there’s a ton of Creativity that came out of that Artificial restriction on people’s Ability to design guns so if you’d like To add this one to your own collection Take a look at the description text Below you’ll find a link there to rock Island’s catalog page on it you can take A look at their pictures and if you’d

Like to place a bid on it you can do so Right through their website thanks for Watching


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