Model Positive Cam Rifle

Positive Cam Rifles

Fall 2013

Positive Cam
NRA Very Good = $8,000
NRA Excellent = $15,000

Positive Cam Rifles

The arms have their breech blocks stamped "Model 1888" rather than "Model 1884." About 100 positive cam rifles were built and sent to San Antonio Arsenal for testing. No reports of the trials have been found. However, today these guns are found in nearly perfect condition which implies that they were never tested.

Positive Cam rifles were built to see if they could solve one of the trapdoor's breech problems: sticking when excessively fired. The mechanism actually moves the locking arm laterally during the opening and closing process. To accomplish this, the shank of the thumb piece was made with coarse threads.

The second problem with the breech system which was not addressed by the change was firing pin failure along with the potential for the broken pin to ignite a cartridge during the closing process. A solution to this problem was proposed by Colonel Buffington and tested on another breech block design at about the same time as the positive cam system was being considered.

For additional photographs, descriptions and specifications see:
The .45-70 Springfield-Book I or The .45-70 Springfield-Book II-1865-1893.

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