circa 1880s revolvers (remakes & props)
Hi. My grandfather packed up and sent me a couple of old prop pistols about a year ago. I have no idea why and he didn't say anything, just sent them. It's not possible to ask him about them. I am trying to find out more about them and I don't know where to go. I was hoping someone might have seen something like these so I can know where to look further. I don't know if they are movie props, some type of well made cap gun, or if even toys in the 1950s were made this lifelike. I kind of doubt the latter. These 'guns' are solid metal and very heavy, probably too heavy for a child. A couple of people more familiar with guns than I have looked at them a little bit and couldn't tell me if they were real or not. They certainly are not, neither of the barrels is hollow all the way through. But they have features that an unknowing person would think would make them seem real. What are these things used for? I can take pictures of these if anyone has heard of anything like them and might know something, but I didn't want to take up the space on your forum with something that technically shouldn't be here.
One of them has a barrel that is roughly 4.5 inches long, but is plugged 4 inches into it (toward the handle end). It has a smaller chamber that is almost as long as the barrel, offset and under the barrel. This chamber houses a spring (the thing that gives this one away as not being from the era it looks) that pushes a small rod through the chamber that has just been 'fired', presumable to remove a bullet. It seems strange to me to add this piece, especially since it is functioning, to a prop that doesn't actually have something to remove. Furthermore, on the back of the gun, behind the round thing that the bullets goes in (sorry for my ignorance), below the hammer, is a metal piece that moves to allow the bullet to be pushed out. Again, needlessly added unless there was something to be pushed out. It looks like this is the only place you could load it as well. The chambers in that round thing have a lip on them that might hold what I'm going to pretend is called the cartridge as the projectile leaves, if there were one. The round thing, the trigger and the hammer are all mechanically tied together like they should be and the gun half-cocks for loading and removing the spent whatever.
The other one is different. It has a longer barrel and the smaller, offset thing under the barrel is a rod that unlatches and pushes a connected rod into the chambers on the round bullet holding part. This one isn't to push something out though, it's much bigger, almost as large as the hole, and could only be used to tamp gunpowder and a miniball or whatever into the hole. The holes on this one are not open all the way through in the same way as the other. On the other side of them is a nipple of some sort that looks like a type of cap could cover. They have a tiny hole. I don't know anything about guns, but it seems like this is maybe how a cap and ball gun could work, with the cap sparking the tamped powder inside the chamber and sending the projectile, however, this barrel is plugged too and it looks like part of the gun. This one half-cocks too. It also has the only marking of the pair, a squashed diamond dissected with a line. 'BKA' is written above it, and '98' below. All in all they really seem to have a lot of effort put into them to not do something, unfortunately that thing is not to shoot things out of it.
Does anyone have any clue what these are for or where I can learn more about them? They very likely weren't made in the time period they project, but they aren't new by any means. My unlearned guess is that they are from the 1950s. I appreciate any help and I'll be ok if someone needs to remove this thread because they aren't actually guns, they sure don't go on a toy forum and I couldn't think of anything else.