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Old 17th December 2018, 08:49 PM   #1
Montagnard
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Question Old Indian Toradar/Identification???

Dear all,

Eventually I joined this exciting forum in order to learn more about my exemplar, after I found here some very interesting threads with respect to old matchlocks.

I acquired a very old (damaged) matchlock gun on a jumble sale and wonder what it actually is?

I assume that my gun is actually an old Indian Toradar?

The shaft might be bamboo? It comes with rattan barrel bands and brass side plates. The muzzle shows ornaments (meaning?), however it has no inscription or hard stamping.

Please note:
There is an indention at the underside of the shaft. Maybe this is a hint that it was used as defensive weapon in a fortress?

Overall length: 150 cm / 4.5 feet
Barrel: 100 cm / 3 feet
caliber: 22 mm / 0.87

Any comments would be highly welcome

Cheers,
Montagnard
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Old 18th December 2018, 09:04 AM   #2
kahnjar1
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Default Afghani???

Hi Montagnard,
Interesting old matchlock but I am not sure about calling it a Torador. The stock shape is not quite right for Indian Toradors but more IMHO resembles a matchlock from Afghanistan. The dent underneath could be to attach or house a folding bipod sometimes found on these guns, and there appears (from your pic reproduced below) to be a hole just forward of the dent which could hold the "swivel" (or maybe a sling ring).
The stock is IMHO unlikely to be bamboo but rather some local wood. Rattan barrel bands are often seen on guns from this region, and also on Toradors from India. Stocks are often made in more than one part as yours would appear to be by the "dovetailed" joint you show in your pics, and these joints are usually hidden by a wide brass or iron band. A combination of barrel band material is not uncommon either. Could be a mix of iron, brass,rattan or just wire, on one gun.
As you say the condition is not the best but as far as I can see it would restore well with a bit of TLC and patience.
If you have any specific questions you could PM me, or email bevnstu99@gmail.com
Stu
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Last edited by kahnjar1; 18th December 2018 at 07:01 PM.
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Old 19th December 2018, 06:16 PM   #3
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Question Indian Toradar or Afghani???

Hi Stu,

Thx a lot for your sharp observations and conclusions. Any guess how old it could be?

By now, I brought it to a skilled carpenter for restoration.

It is interesting, many discussions on those matchlocks end often up in either south-indian or afghani origin.

Maybe the ornaments at the muzzle could give a hint to where the gun actually came from?

Cheers,
Montagnard
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Old 19th December 2018, 08:27 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Montagnard
Hi Stu,

Thx a lot for your sharp observations and conclusions. Any guess how old it could be?

By now, I brought it to a skilled carpenter for restoration.

It is interesting, many discussions on those matchlocks end often up in either south-indian or afghani origin.

Maybe the ornaments at the muzzle could give a hint to where the gun actually came from?

Cheers,
Montagnard
Hi Montagnard,
Pleased that you have the stock restoration underway. Please post pics of the finished job when done. Hopefully you will also have the metalwork cleaned up and rust removed/stabilised, and replacement bands made where necessary.
I have always looked at the stock/butt shape to try and arrive at origin point, as indeed have others here. If you have Tirri's book, check out his pics of the Afghani Matchlocks.
The Indian Torador style (usually) has a pronounced notch behind the match cock. The muzzle (barrel) on yours could be Persian or Indian or indeed from anywhere....it must be remembered that these guns were "locally" made so any useful or available bit was used in their construction.
Age would be a pure guess as matchlocks were made up to a much later time than in the "west". My guess on your gun would be 19th century up to (maybe) the early 20th century.
I have attached some pics showing matchlock stock styles of various regions.
In order they are: Omani, Indo-Persian, North Indian. There are of course others but these are the ones I have in my collection. Also attached a pic of a typical Torador taken from the 'Net. Note the long thin butt....
Stu
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Old 21st December 2018, 05:58 PM   #5
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Default Found a very similar matchlock!

Hi Stu,

nice collection!

http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?p=232581

"On the one hand we see a gun often encountered in South India with rattan bindings that are also abundant there...
On the other hand such stock pattern might have been potentially seen in Afghanistan ( but the evidence is extremely weak) and rattan bindings were seen on a single specimen ( jezail)."
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Old 22nd December 2018, 01:19 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Montagnard
Hi Stu,

nice collection!

http://www.vikingsword.com/vb/showthread.php?p=232581

"On the one hand we see a gun often encountered in South India with rattan bindings that are also abundant there...
On the other hand such stock pattern might have been potentially seen in Afghanistan ( but the evidence is extremely weak) and rattan bindings were seen on a single specimen ( jezail)."
Hi Montagnard,
Thank you for the kind comments.
As you will see from the thread you link to, opinions do differ but also remember that India and Afghanistan are very close geographicaly and there would be cross border "trade" going on, so parts would very likely have been combined to create a gun.
I still lean towards Afghanistan for your matchlock based on the stock shape, and I note that the same conclusion was reached in the linked thread.
Either way it can reasonably be said that your gun could be called "Indo Afghani"
Stu
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Old 22nd December 2018, 09:56 AM   #7
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D' Accord!
Indo-Afghani sounds good to me.
Happy holidays!
Montagnard
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Old 22nd December 2018, 03:25 PM   #8
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Hi Montagnard. And welcome to the Forum.

That's an interesting matchlock. I agree with Stu's observations.

The barrel looks typical of what you would see from Northern India with the swelled breech and plain, notched rear sight. Also the swell and tulip type decoration at the muzzle end.

Along with Stu's comments on the stock, a couple other observations: The top wood section covering the serpentine being a seperate piece with two wood pegs (or possibly nails in this case) and the flats filed at the wrist area are both typical of Indian construction. It's only the butt stock design that is more typical of Afghani guns.

As Stu mentions, the barrel bands used on these guns can be rattan, leather, brass, iron, or silver. The intentional notch seems too far rearward for the use of a bi-pod. So I'm thinking it may have been done to accomodate the rear portion of a simple tie-on type sling.

Overall, the gun looks to have been made by an Indian craftsman for possibly an Afghan customer at low cost using a recycled barrel from a Torador musket, and whatever other material was locally available.

If you plan on restoring the gun, replacing the barrel bands with dark brown leather might look good in this case if rattan not available.

Rick
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