West Sea Company

6. Hardware

Prices in U.S. Dollars are in GREEN




5.83/6.50   WWII U.S.N. FLARE PISTOL.  Authentic signaling pistol made for the U.S. Navy by the R. F. Sedgley Co. as marked on the top of the barrel "SIGNAL PISTOL MK 5 R. F. SEDGLEY INC. 1942."  It is further marked with an impressed "S" along with the serial number just forward of the trigger.  The blackened tapered steel barrel tilts forward from the body to receive the canister charge, locked into place by a spring-loaded button underneath.  Both sides of the Bakelite pistol grip handle have non-slip checkered patterns engraved with a diamond shape and a circle in the middle reading "USN."  It is equipped with a pivoting lanyard ring on the butt.  This 10 gauge flare gun measures 11 inches long, 5 ½ inches top to bottom and 1 ½ inches thick.  Virtually mint condition in all respects.  The action is tight and functional.  295

This compact and relatively light weight flare gun was the obvious choice of Navy fliers early in the War.


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6.52  PUMP FOG WHISTLE.  Charming late 19th century fog whistle made of solid brass.  This unusual navigational warning device has a brass plunger with wooden handle which activates the leather-lined piston within creating pressure to blow the attached whistle.  The whistle is of classic form with a decorative acorn finial.  It has three chambers in its cylindrical brass body mounted to the hemispherical bell.  A sharp stroke on the plunger activates the whistle which emits a pleasing high pitched blast.  The main body of the instrument is mounted on 3 brass feet to a sculpted square base of solid maple.  This unique maritime device measures 16 inches tall by 4 ½ inches in diameter.  The base is 7 inches square and the plunger extends to an overall height of 25 ½ inches.  Outstanding original condition.  A novel maritime relic with incredible appeal which elicits a grin from all who witness it in action!  895


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6.51 FLARE PISTOL.  Massive World War II flare gun with a very heavy solid bronze chamber and grip.  This authentic signaling device is embossed on the handle "INTERNATIONAL FLARE SIGNAL CO. TIPPECANOE CITY OHIO."   The body is stamped "PT DEC `43."  The handle is cross hatched on both sides to assure a firm grip.  The large trigger is protected by its bronze guard and there is a suspension loop on the butt for attachment to a lanyard.  The barrel tips forward for breech loading by means of a spring-loaded lever just forward of the hammer.  The steel barrel has a bore of 1 3/8 inches.  The action is tight and smooth.  Approximately 11 ½ inches long by 8 ½ inches high.  Excellent original condition. 395



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6.47  LIFE SAVING CANNON.   Very impressive World War II vintage or earlier cannon used by the Coast Guard (and previously the U.S. Lifesaving Service) to rescue crewmen on vessels stranded on inaccessible shores.  Also known as a line throwing cannon, this apparatus was made by the “SCULLER Safety Corp. No. 1561, 122 Broad Street New York” as stamped on the oval brass maker’s plate on top of the breach.  This muzzle loader has a solid steel barrel 28 inches long with a barrel diameter of 3 5/8 inches and a bore of 2 ½ inches.  The end of the muzzle is stamped with the matching serial number “1561” and the safety inspector’s initials “J.R.H.”  The barrel is encased by a thick bronze sleeve surrounding the midsection.  It rests on its original cast iron carriage 26 inches long by 12 ½ inches wide.  The entire assembly measures 32 inches long and weighs 180 pounds.  The breech end of the cannon is attached to the carriage by a thick, round fulcrum which pivots between two brass trunnions.   For elevation the carriage is equipped with a “T” bar which fits into any of 3 successively higher holes.  The cannon is complete with its rarely found percussion firing system marked, “COSTON SUPPLY CO NEW YORK.”  It takes a .32 caliber blank activated by a lanyard which releases a spring-loaded firing pin.  Included in this offering is the original wooden ram rod 32 inches long and an authentic lifesaving projectile embossed “CROSBY-LAUGHLIN” and stamped “U.S.L.S.S.” which is 28 inches long and weighs 18 pounds.  This cannon is in outstanding, near pristine condition, fully complete and functional* as it was made over 80 years ago. Price Request Special PackagingBack to Top

Ex. Collection Contra Costa Historical Society, Antioch, California.

In his landmark book entitled “The Lifesaving Guns of David Lyle,” J.P. Barnett, 1974, South Bend Replicas, Inc., the author discusses the firing mechanism on pages 64-66.  The “marine type” was developed in 1936 and became the standard throughout the Coast Guard.  Its use was widespread prior to World War II and became required of all guns manufactured after April 1944.  A similar projectile is shown on page 68.  A similar gun is shown on page 70.  On page 73 the results of firing such a cannon using 3 ounces of black powder at elevations of 20 – 30 degrees are shown.  Ranges from 800 to 924 feet were recorded.

*  IMPORTANT!  West Sea Company disavows any responsibility for the results of attempting to fire this cannon.   Please see the CAUTION disclaimer.


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6.43 EARLY “AIR WHISTLE.” Heavy solid bronze ship’s horn bearing the oval maker’s label “CUNNINGHAM 2AS 40 140.” This is the Cunningham, Seattle Model 2AS which operated on air or steam with a pressure range of 40 to 140 psi. According to Cunningham’s specifications it had a frequency of 467 cycles/second at 116 decibels and could be heard for 1 ¾ miles! The mechanism to achieve this is a silver metal diaphragm in the rear measuring 3 ¾ inches in diameter. There is a small adjusting screw in the diaphragm housing for adjusting the tone. This hefty horn weighs 5 pounds. It measures 8 inches long by 6 1/4 inches high and 6 inches wide on the mounting brackets. Complete with small flange for attachment of an input line. It still works, producing a clear deafening tone. Great old greenish patina acquired from years at sea. 295

The Cunningham Company is still in business today producing similar air horns. But this original old sea dog dates to the 1930’s or earlier. A similar but smaller horn dated “1900-1930’s” was offered on “Go Antiques.” Another horn was removed from an identified tug boat dating from 1914.



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6.41  LIFEBOAT WATER CASK.  Early form water cask of the type found on World War I or earlier Navy life boats.  This stout barrel was hand-made by a master copper using solid oak staves and galvanized barrel hoops.  It has two pivoting bail handles with wooden grips and retains both its brass bung on retaining chain and functional spigot.  The inner bands are riveted in such a manner to provide 4 supporting “feet.”  22 inches long overall (including the spigot), 12 inches high (with handles folded) and 11 inches in diameter.  Excellent original condition with very desirable surfaces.  A real classic with a  great old look.  395 Special Packaging



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6.40  SALUTING CANNON.   Highly desirable American yacht cannon from the second half of the 19th century.  This extraordinary piece of American history was made by the Strong Manufacturing Company, New Haven, Connecticut circa 1880.  It features a solid bronze barrel with a 1 1/16th inch “Number 4” bore, and a heavy pivoting breech block with percussion firing pin, spring-loaded closure, and shell extractor.  The breech, with an outside diameter of 4 ¼ inches, will accommodate a 10 gauge shogun shell and is complete with its original and functional spring-loaded shell extractor.  This unusually large version of yachting cannons measures 24 inches long on the barrel and 28 inches long overall.  The ebonized hardwood carriage measures 17 ¼ inches long by 8 inches wide and 13 inches high overall.   The total width at the wheels is 13 inches.  Mounted within the carriage is the original rotating brass jack screw for precise elevation of the barrel by means of the 4-pronged lift screw.  The top of the breech is faintly marked (some illegible):


MAN’F’D
THE STRONG FIREARMS
-CO-
(Eagle mark)
NEW HAVEN, CONN.
U.S.A.
SOLD BY
 HENRY C. SQUIRES
 NEW YORK.”

The entire assembly weighs an impressive 72 pounds.   Complete with several blank shotgun shells.  A most handsome, fully functional American cannon approximately 135 years old. Price Request Special Packaging


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6.33  EXCEPTIONAL YACHT CANNON.  “THE” most highly sought after 19th century American yacht signaling cannon “MADE BY H. BROWN & CO. NEW HAVEN CT U.S.A.  LAVIGNE’S  PAT. JULY 31-86” as marked on the top of the breech.  This incredible cannon is unusually large for yachting.  The length of the barrel itself is a full 2 feet with a bore of just under 1 ½ inches!  It is made of solid gun metal bronze and the breech is fitted with a unique closure incorporating a lanyard-fired percussion system.  The cannon is supported in its heavy brass trunnion mounts which allow elevation through a wide range.   The original wooden carriage is made of dense mahogany with brass fittings including 4 rings for securing and numerous acorn nuts.  There are two small wooden wheels for ease of moving this heavy assembly weighing over 100 pounds!   The patented breech block operates smoothly with a tight fit.  The spring-loaded firing pin is released by pulling the remotely-operated hand lanyard which has a stout brass pull ring.  Once fired, the expended shell is removed by the finger shell extractor.  As an added bonus this cannon comes with a custom-made knurled aluminum insert which allows the cannon to be fired with a much smaller 10 gauge shotgun shell.  The barrel is 27 ¼ inches long inclusive of the breech. The whole unit is 30 inches overall from the muzzle to the rear of the carriage.  It stands 11 inches high.  Excellent original condition in all respects.  The cannon and its fittings have acquired a lovely statuary bronze age patina.Price Request Special Packaging

The R. H. Brown Company began business in New Haven, Connecticut in 1888 manufacturing yachting and signaling cannons.   After a relatively brief but illustrious career, the company closed its operations in 1912, the same year as the infamous TITANIC disaster. 

The unique lanyard percussion firing system offered here was the invention of J.P. Lavigne, who was awarded a U.S. Patent for his design in 1886.  The cannon is fired by pulling a lanyard, which releases the spring-loaded firing pin into the charge.  This design eliminated the need for cocking prior to firing.  Another innovative aspect was the swivel breech block which allowed simple closure of the breech without locking as required by other cannons of the period.  Both of these features combined to allow rapidity of firing as well as providing an additional measure of safety for the cannoneer.


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6.28  EXTRA NICE PORTHOLE.  Unusually fine, heavy solid brass ship’s 3-dog porthole.  This genuine relic from the days of steam measures a full 22 ½ inches in diameter overall.  The flawless crystal clear, thick glass port measures a full 18 inches across.  The overall depth of this porthole is 5 ½ inches, having a flange thickness of 5/8ths inches, weighing an impressive 62 pounds!  Condition is exceptional with a high luster polish preserved with a professional quality coating.  We have not encountered a more pristine example in all our 40 years in this business. Request Price Special Packaging



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