POTD: Rare Prussian Model 1857 Dreyse Needle-Fire Bolt Action Carbine

   09.15.22

POTD: Rare Prussian Model 1857 Dreyse Needle-Fire Bolt Action Carbine

Welcome to today’s Photo of the Day! Here we have a rifle that we had touched on briefly in the past. I should say we touched a little on the design in a previous Photo of the day article but that was on the literal rifle. This Model 1857 Dreyse Needle-Fire gun is a scarce carbine variant and the one pictured is serial number 3 nonetheless. The Dreyse needle-fire system was quite simple. It uses a paper cartridge that is inserted into the breech and when it is closed up and ready to go a literal needle acts as a firing pin and punctures into the cartridge, through the black powder, and into a primer. This sets off the cartridge and is a quick and efficient way of shooting. It was an engineering marvel at the time and a couple of countries adopted it on the spot. The downside? The needles tend to get burned up and brittle and break as a result.

“Crown/K” proofs are marked on several components. A “crown/A” proof is marked on the barrel, and a “crown/W” proof is marked on the buttplate tang. The number “3” is stamped on the bolt handle, bolt, receiver, barrel and trigger assembly. There are no other markings. The barrel is fitted with inverted “V” front and two leaf rear sights. The buttplate and trigger guard are brass. Saddle rings are mounted behind the trigger guard. The full length stock has a raised cheekpiece. The Prussian military adopted the Dreyse needle-gun, the first breech loading rifle to use a bolt to open and close the chamber, in 1841 as their main infantry weapon. The Model 1857 carbine is one of the rarer examples.”

1857 Dreyse Needle-Fire

Lot 218: Prussian Model 1857 Dreyse Needle-Fire Bolt Action Carbine – Rare Prussian Model 1857 Dreyse Needle-Fire Bolt Action Carbine Serial Number 3. (n.d.). Rock Island Auction Company. photograph. Retrieved September 14, 2022, from https://www.rockislandauction.com/detail/71/218/prussian-model-1857-dreyse-needlefire-bolt-action-carbine.

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Writer | TheFirearmBlog Writer | AllOutdoor.com Instagram | sfsgunsmith Old soul, certified gunsmith, published author, avid firearm history learner, and appreciator of old and unique guns.

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