.35-30 Maynard Model 1865

Saturday, February 29th, 2020

.35-30 Maynard Model 1865

Dr. Edward Maynard (1813-1891) was best known for the Maynard Tap Primer that he patented in 1845. His primer system was designed to eliminate the need to manually place a percussion cap on the nipple of a weapon everytime it was made ready to fire. When the hammer was cocked a paper roll carrying the priming compound was advanced over the nipple and primed the firearm. The government adapted this tape priming system in 1855 and it is found on all Model 1855 rifles, muskets, pistols manufactured at the two national armories between 1855 and 1861.

In 1851 Dr. Maynard was granted two patents, one for his breech loading carbine and the other for his metallic cartridge. The carbine patent covered the lowering of the trigger guard operating lever which is pressed down and forward. It drops the muzzle and raises the breech for inserting a cartridge. In 1856 Major William A. Bell held a test trail of the Maynard carbine with Lieutenant Benton firing the weapon. A .48 caliber Maynard was used in these trials and was fired forty times with only one misfire. Shots were fired at distances of 100, 200, 300, 400, and 500 yards. Major Bell concluded “I would respectfully state that this firearm is considered the best breechloader for military or civil purpose I have yet seem”.

The metallic cartridge used in the first carbine contained a 343 grain pointed bullet with a single grease groove and 40 grains of powder. The successful trials of 1856 lead to further cartridge improvements that were patented by Dr. Maynard and in April 1857 the Maynard Arms Company of Washington D.C was formed. In August 1857 they entered into an agreement with Massachusetts Arms Company of Chicopee Falls to manufacture 5,000 of the Maynard carbines in .35 and .50 calibers.

Further testing was scheduled for June 17th, 1857, but Dr. Maynard requested a delay so they could test his .50 caliber carbine. His request was granted and in August they began testing his .50 caliber carbine. During the first day of testing powder built up in the muzzle of the rifle. On the second day of testing a wad was used in the cartridge and the powder build up was eliminated. The .50 Maynard carbine was fire 40 times in three minutes and twenty seconds.

Dr. Maynard held 23 U.S. patents for various firearms related inventions. In 1841 he received an honorary degree of Doctor of Dental Surgery from Baltimore College and later became Chairman of Theory and Practice at the Baltimore Dental College. He held the same position at the National University in Washington, D.C. He was offered a job by Russian Czar Nicholas I with the rank of Major in the Russian Army, which he declined. He continued his dental practice until 1890. The .35-30 Maynard Model 1865 is capable of propelling a .36” dia. 250 grain bullet at 1,280 fps. with 909 ft.-lbs. of energy.

Roberson Cartridge Company is a custom manufacture of Vintage, Obsolete, Hard to Find and Wildcat calibers.

  • John D McAulay, Carbines of the Civil War 1861 – 1865, Union City: 1981

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