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mbatten
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Reged: 15/08/19
Posts: 14
Loc: BC Canada
Mysterious English Rook rifle
      #360197 - 08/01/22 02:25 PM

Hello:

I'm attempting to find out more about who might have made this English 360 No. 5 rook rifle, as there's no maker's name engraved anywhere on the gun.

This rifle has a .366 groove diameter and will accept 38 Special cartridges. It has a nice piece of walnut with steel butt plate and horn forend tip.
There are London proof marks on the left side of the breech, but I donít know what the small scrolled ĎRí stamp means. Thereís a single standing and single folding leaf sight marked Ď50 YRDSí and Ď100 YRDSí. The muzzle has an unusual convex crown, with about 1/4Ē of unrifled and over-size bore inside the barrel.

I can shoot about a 4Ē group at 50 yards with hollow-based wad cutter 38 Special ammunition. I would like to try a larger heeled .366 bullet, but Iíll need a custom mould for that.

It may have been made by Webley, as it looks like many guns illustrated online and in "The Classic British Rook and Rabbit Rifle" book.

Please see pictures below. Your thoughts and comments are welcome, thank you!

https://imgur.com/gallery/T38R61r

mbatten


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lancaster
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Reged: 06/05/08
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Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: mbatten]
      #360202 - 08/01/22 05:11 PM

4" at 50 yards with a .358 bullet out of a .366 barrel is not bad

I would try 9mm Makarov bullets, they are .364

--------------------
Norwegian hunter misses moose, shoots man on toilet
.
bringing civilisation to the barbarians


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Daryl_S
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Reged: 10/08/05
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Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: lancaster]
      #360219 - 09/01/22 04:33 AM

4" @ 50yards, I am surprised.
The side lever and overall rifle, is really "NEAT"!
Bottom instead of left side extraction device, again "NEAT".

Buffalo arms might have a mould, in a heal bullet closer to the requisite calibre?
Other mould makers do produce custom moulds.

The old 158gr. HB round nose might be a better bullet, however you would need to find older CIL ammo, I suspect, or a mold to cast them.

A .38 Case, fired in my .357 Ruger, comes out at .378" diameter.
What diameter do the .38's fired in your rifle expand to?

--------------------
Daryl


"a gun without hammers is like a Spaniel without ears" King George V


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93x64mm
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Reged: 07/12/11
Posts: 2932
Loc: Nth QLD Australia
Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: Daryl_S]
      #360224 - 09/01/22 07:52 AM

A very nice piece of kit you have there indeed!
If you are unsure of the chamber than get a cast.
Bertram brass may have the correct size case for you.
As to getting 4" at 50 yards, that's bloody awesome with a rather undersized slug in the bore; with full sized projectiles.......a lot better for sure!


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Daryl_S
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Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: 93x64mm]
      #360227 - 09/01/22 10:22 AM

I just received this note from a friend, about your Rook Ctg.

:"360 No5 Rook, if he shoots 38 S&W it will be a lot better as slightly larger bullets & case, I have had several 360No 5 Express rifles & handguns , I shot light 38 Special loads & they work but 38 S&W is a much better fit & all factory loads are light !
So if you want you could advise/suggest that guy to try 38 S&W"

--------------------
Daryl


"a gun without hammers is like a Spaniel without ears" King George V


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TH44
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Reged: 21/02/09
Posts: 676
Loc: West UK
Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: Daryl_S]
      #360229 - 09/01/22 11:55 AM

All of these side lever rook rifles were made in the Birmingham trade and retailed by many makers, H&H, Purdey and all the top names
They varied in quality and fortunately yours is one of the better ones and in excellent condition
The .360 No.5 was a successor of the heeled bullet .380 "long" or "rifle" cartridge which had a .380 bore
The two cases are almost identical but if a standard (internal) bullet was used it would have to be a .360 bore which is what most makers went for
Most people as you have, now use the .38 special cartridges I do not know of a maker of .366 bullets although Lee used to make a .365 Makarov mould but it appears very short
Good luck with your endeavours
TH44


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mbatten
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Reged: 15/08/19
Posts: 14
Loc: BC Canada
Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: TH44]
      #360232 - 09/01/22 01:49 PM

Thanks for your comments, gentlemen!

Fired 38 special cases measure approximately .378" OD diameter after shooting, and a chamber cast would indicate this to be a .360 #5 Rook.

I've received two suggestions for bullets:

- 'bumping up' a .358 HBWC by squeezing longitudinally in a vice.

- trying a cast .36 conical bullet of .375 diameter that has a smaller diameter base (Lee Precision mould)

I may consider a custom mould if these suggestions are unsatisfactory.

I've ordered a copy of Winfer's BRITISH SINGLE SHOT RIFLES, VOLUME 7: ROOK, RABBIT & MINIATURE RIFLES; perhaps that will help in the search to discover the maker.

Cheers!

mbatten


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450_Ackley
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Reged: 06/02/03
Posts: 576
Loc: Darling Downs, Qld Australia
Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: mbatten]
      #360237 - 09/01/22 05:26 PM

CBE (Cast Bullet Engineering) makes a 365-150BB bullet mould specifically for this cartridge, and a few others. Itís under 9.3mm bullet moulds on the website.

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HuviusModerator
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Reged: 04/11/07
Posts: 3293
Loc: Colorado
Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: 450_Ackley]
      #360248 - 10/01/22 02:15 AM

I've been please with paper patched .358" projectiles in my 360 No.5.
A bit fiddly to patch if you aren't familiar with the process but makes for a nice cartridge.
You may find some bullets for the 9.3X72R which may also work although probably a bit heavy for a rook rifle.

--------------------
He who lives in the past is doomed to enjoy it.


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lancaster
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Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: Huvius]
      #360289 - 11/01/22 05:58 AM

I told d you so - 9 mak bullets

--------------------
Norwegian hunter misses moose, shoots man on toilet
.
bringing civilisation to the barbarians


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Wayne59
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Reged: 20/06/15
Posts: 1213
Loc: Lagrange Ga. USA
Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: lancaster]
      #360304 - 12/01/22 02:35 AM

What is the twist in your rifle. I own two of these rifles. They are both Holland & Holland rifles. Both have different twist. one is 1/25 and the second is 1/50.

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mbatten
.224 member


Reged: 15/08/19
Posts: 14
Loc: BC Canada
Re: Mysterious English Rook rifle [Re: Wayne59]
      #360326 - 12/01/22 03:03 PM

This one appears to have 1 in 22" twist.

Preliminary shooting with a Lee Precision .36 conical bullet of 130 grains is looking quite promising, too!

Are your H&H rifles similar to this one?


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