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Colt Burgess & Lightning Rifle Reloading Tool in 44-40 by Ideal

These little tools are pretty tough to come by with markings for both Colt and Winchester repeating rifles.  This is a combination loading tool and bullet mold...all in one tool! Usually, the just say 44 WCF...which stands for Caliber 44 Winchester Center Fire aka 44-40.  After all, it was Winchester's baby and the world's first reloadable cartridge.  The 44 WCF finally made having a repeating rifle out on the American Frontier actually practical!  This one however is marked "44 C.M.R. & W.C.F.".  That little "CMR" marking stands for COLT MAGAZINE RIFLE which is usually associated with their pump action Lightning model rifle but would also apply to the short-lived Lever action Burgess rifle.  The Lightning rifle came in 3 sizes, small, medium, and large frames.  The Medium frames were built in 32-20, 38-40, and of course, 44-40.  Manufacture lasted from around 1884 to just after the turn of the 20th Century.  Every once in a while, you'll see a very late production Medium frame Lightning rifle in 44-40 with San Francisco Police markings.  The 44-40 Lightnings were  also quite popular in Great Britain as well as British Colonies.  Their were even a few export models termed "The Magic Rifle".  We've only heard about them but would love to find one someday.  The Burgess Rifle lived a rather short life during the 1880's with just under 7000 being produced.  Since it was a lever action, Winchester felt threatened by Colt's competition so they began to design revolvers and weren't too quiet about their intentions.  I think they even sent Colt some drawings as a friendly reminder that Winchester could play the same game.  The result was a truce...Colt discontinued the the lever action Burgess rifle and Winchester never made their revolver.  At any rate, its not very often we find the tools for these tools marked for both Winchester and Colt rifles. 

Overall, the condition of the tool is in NRA Antique Fine condition with 70% original nickel plating with the balance flaked to a light grey to brown patina.  Very good markings including the 1884 patent dates on the back of the tool.  The mold cavity is in very nice shape showing no signs of corrosion.  The little stop pin on the sprue cutter is bent over a little bit...that's the only flaw I see and its a minor one at that!  This tool still works as good as when it was new.

Item# 0527

$225.00 SOLD



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