Wanna Get Your Crank On? With a Gat? (ling?)

Sure, there’s always a couple of vendors trying to sell Colt’s new-edition 1875, 1877 or 1878 Gatling Guns for prices around $50-60k. (There were eleven of them on GunBroker when we put this story to bed last night). What about those of you who jones for a Gatling, but can’t afford the price of a luxo car or SUV for it, or can’t get a decent trade for your first-born child?

Fear not, the cheapskate New Englanders at WeaponsMan.com have your back. Mission: save you money on a Wild West icon, so you can go bankrupt buying blackpowder or Cowboy Action rounds and getting your crank on.

Fun fact about Gatlings: they had been so well employed by one American officer that the US Army’s machine gunners — who were, mostly, under his sway — clung to the Gatling into the 20th Century, long after the armies of Europe and the modern armies of Asia had chosen automatic machine guns.

Item 1: Museum Quality Gatling Gun w Carriage 45LC Mag

Price: Buy it now for $18k, or make an bid on the penny auction — against the unknown reserve. No bids yet.

Gatling Portland 01

Great looking Gat(ling).

Seller’s been trying to unload this gat since 2015, at least on GunBroker and at the Portland, OR gun show. Initially he wanted $30k, then $25, and now he’s down to $18k. Ground shipping to your FFL (it’s a Title 1 firearm) is $600.

$18k too high? Let’s move on.

Item 2: Replica Gatling Gun in 45 Black Powder

Price: No Reserve sale with minimum bid of $10k, or actually $5 under that number. No bids yet.

Gatling Tucson 02

This one’s not as impressive as the $18k gun; it has a homemade-y look. But it’s $10k plus actual shipping from a gun shop in Tucson. The seller says:

Up for auction is a Modern Replica of a Gatling Gun, built in the 1980’s by a machinist who was also a civil war re-enactor.

6 barrels. Working Black Powder Gatling Gun, designed to fire cap and ball blanks only but barrels are .45 caliber and rifled.

Perfect for Recreations, Movies or Stage Prop. The gun has been a fixture in the shop for years and gets a lot of attention but it is time for us to change some of our decor so it is reluctantly for sale.

Item 3: GATLING GUN FULLY- FUNCTIONAL LIVE-FIRE 45 L.C.

Price: No Reserve sale with minimum bid of $7k, or actually $5 under that number. No bids yet.

While this is the price leader of the authentic(ish) Gatlings, it seems to be a high-quality piece with a lot of brass. The seller complicated his sale by not taking a single good picture of the whole Gatling, but there are some character-rich detail shots. The business end:

Gatling OK 04

And here’s the rear half, left side:

Gatling OK 03

The rear half, right side:

Gatling OK 01

And the forward:

Gatling OK 02

Sure, it’s not for everybody. Some guys will complain about its lack of Picatinny rails and others will turn it down because there is no place to mount a bayonet. The magazine capacity probably makes it illegal in Massachusetts, Colorado, California, and North Korea.

But it would be worth the price of the ammo (and the target frames) to crank this puppy up from time to time… maybe on the anniversary of the Little Big Horn.

But there you go — three options for less than the somewhat stiff cost of entry to the Colt Repro Gatling Club. Just the thing for getting your crank on.

And on the other hand, if you feel diffident about saving money on a 19th Century classic firearm, there are eleven Colt replicas available for up to $60k.

But if you feel diffident about saving money on anything under the sun, we don’t know what you are but you are not a cheapskate New Englander.

32 thoughts on “Wanna Get Your Crank On? With a Gat? (ling?)

  1. LSWCHP

    Reading “Fear not, the cheapskate New Englanders at WeaponsMan.com etc” made me snort red wine all over my tablet. Keep up the good work Hognose!

  2. John McG

    The local gun club, where I help out instructing the youth shooting league, runs a youth day in the late summer each year. Free food and drink, archery, rifle shooting, etc.
    For the past few years, a gentleman has brought his Colt repro Gatling Gun and 1000 rounds of 45-70. Any kid, and a few adults, who wants to gets to crank out 20 rounds of hand cast lead fun.
    Very fun, but sobering to see what a Gatling on a tripod mount can do to pumpkins, water jugs, and 5 gallon buckets full of chalk. The MG42 of its time.

  3. James

    Hmmmm….New England cheapskate?As a fellow New Englander I take umbrage with that comment,we are frugal,not cheapskates!We look for the best deal but are more then willing to pay good money for a quality product/service,we reuse/repurpose items no longer good for their original mission,a great example is a t-shirt,first a shirt/then a oil rag,then washed and cut up for cleaning patches ect.This is why we have organized piles of lumber/metal/cans of nuts and bolts,stuff others will throw out,we will find a use for said stuff(just takes time!).Make no mistake,when I am in the market for a Gatling gun(?) quality will be the first thing I look for,then the best price.

    1. LSWCHP

      Damn James, I may have New England blood somewhere after all!! This very afternoon my youngest son handed me a too small t-shirt with the comment that now I could use it to clean my guns. And that’s exactly what I’ll do, first as an oil rag, and then cut into patches to go on the jag for mopping bores.

      I like your thinking, sir. Good quality products supplied at a keen but fair price that sustain a man in his business while providing satisfaction to the customer are the heart of our western system of enterprise.

      Most of my time in the USA has been spent in California and Texas. I think I may have to find the time soon to visit some of you Folks up in the North East to get some perspective on a part of America that I’m not yet familiar with.

      1. James

        LS,as with all the US New England has it’s good and bad.Some great hiking/hunting/fishing in the region along with some great coastline on some states/sking ect.The bad is the same as anywhere for most part,no need to waste time on it.

        The Appy trail ends in New England,or begins if that’s where you start,you have a lot of free time down the road a excellent adventure.That said,a visit to the mountains out west almost mandatory,great areas and some real good folks.

  4. staghounds

    It’s hard to tell with the bad pictures, but don’t #1 and #3 look like they came off the same production line?

    Different mounts of course. I think #3 is a bargain. One of these day’s I’ll weaken and buy a Furr.

  5. Toastrider

    You keep playing with your crank, you’re gonna go blind, y’know :)

    OK, jokes aside, these are pretty cool.

  6. Boat Guy

    So being a lazy kinda guy I spose adding the electric motor would ruin the collector value…

      1. James

        Trigger the firearms act?Need to add pun intended on that.In my earlier post ? me buying a Gatling gun,then,John kindly pointed out the damage one can do if things get froggy,those water jugs/pumpkins ect. get frisky good to know there is a way to keep em in line or at least at bay!

    1. Ti

      Gat(ling) to Minigun.

      I guess during the NY riots protesting the draft for the civil war, a NY newspaper (NYT ?) had Gats installed in the newspaper’s building to keep the crowd at bay.

  7. SPEMack

    Haha. CINC House caved to,my relentless pressure and we watched “The Rough Riders” of the course of the last three nights. Lt. “Gatling” Parker is my hero of the month.

    Alas none of these seem to be chambered in .30-40 Krag so I’ll have to pass.

  8. DSM

    I would learn to be a machinist for the sole purpose of building my own…with picatinny rails and bayonet lug(s). The Schlumpf drive on my recumbent and its planetary gears comes to mind for the crank because more revolutions per crank can’t be a bad thing.

    1. Claypigeonshooter

      There might be blueprints on weaponeer.net
      And if you thought guns were expensive wait till you see how much brand new machines and tooling costs.
      I would recommend getting used equipment that is in good shape. You can find good deals that way.

    2. Hognose Post author

      Well, more revolutions per crank might mean more effort to overcome inertia from rest. Slower first shots.

      There used to be a guy selling rough castings of Gatling components. Might be the source of some of these builds.

  9. looserounds.com

    New England guy talking about Civil war Gatling guns. Triggered!. Brings back faint thoughts of some yankee using one of those to shoot up some of my past family members.

    1. SPEMack

      Of course the Yankees would have something like that. That and those damnable carbines you could load on Sunday and shoot all week. They never could beat us force on force.

      I often joke that I’m thankful I commissioned before the last wear out date of the class a greens. I don’t think my Grandmother would have tolerated seeing me in yankee blue.

  10. raven

    steampunk it-
    How about a tractor seat, with backrest, pedals for cranking, elevation and windage controls hand operated, like a yoke?

    So what counts as NFA? Electric motors are out, obviously-
    what about a hand cranked flywheel with a clutch? Or a hand tensioned spring drive?

  11. Aesop

    When last I looked, they’re all CA-legal, as they are considered not only curios and relics, but single-shot rifles.
    Although with the latest tomfoolery here concerning high-cap mags and weapons in general, their current ctatus is anyone’s guess, but I know a number of folks, mostly SASS types, who possess and fire them from time to time here in Califrutopia.

    But hey, good news for your “When criminals can’t kill with guns” featurettes:
    The US Surgeon general has just admitted US doctors writing for prescription opiate pain medications kill more people annually than either firearms or automobile accidents, in a letter sent to every US physician chiding them to cut back on relieving pain so effectively OD’s on the meds are up 97%.

    No word (yet) on banning high-cap pill bottles or assault doctors, but it can’t be far behind.

  12. emdfl

    That one for $7K is cheaper than the cost of buying the plans and building the RG-58(?) .22 caliber version. I have a set of the plans and even got the Phlips at the shipyard shop in Saudi to fabricate the bull and drive gears, for me but never got any further along.
    Actually I had done a deal with the boys to build all the parts for me but then I got called back to the states three months sooner then I had planned.

    1. James B.

      Now that could be a heck of a toy… I envision a three barrel (3 surplus M16HB’s) gun feeding through a C-Mag on an upside down AR receiver… Perhaps using a AR/M16 bolt and carrier as well – I wonder if parts of the gearing could be either printed or repurposed from another machine? Basically just something that can turn “round and round”, into “back and forth”……..Gawds….. A barn-burner with a hand crank.
      One of our resident geniuses needs to make this happen.

  13. John M.

    (Getting this on the proper thread this time. Good grief.)

    What, pray tell, are “cap and ball blanks”? Wouldn’t that just be a cap? Or a cap and a powder charge held in with some wadding of some sort? And how does that interact with a crank gun? Load up six charges, one crank around for a bang-bang-bang-bang-bang-bang and then reload? Color me confused.

    Perhaps someone thinks that “black powder cartridges” and “cap and ball” mean the same thing?

    -John M.

    1. James B.

      You, sir, are a mind-reader.. What I read into the statement is, 6 rifled .45 barrels, but has only been used with BP blanks. Perhaps the barrels have a partial obstruction such as a pin, and wax or paper-wad blanks, rather than crimped 3-in-1 Hollywood Western BP blanks were used?

  14. John Distai

    The new indoor range has a new one of those. Very pretty. I’m sure they paid quite the premium for it. Perhaps they bought it with one of the loan draws they had when building the place.

  15. raven

    On some gun blog or another I saw a build thread of a guy who built a very nice .45 -? ACP? gatling, from scratch, using a car differential as the drive. Very interesting and done with pretty tools- lathe, mill, stick welder, etc. he built a full size carriage and all. Maybe it was a link on Practical Machinist or somewhere.

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