No.46 - October 2009

Monday Themes

For the last two meetings of the year the following themes are announced –

  • 26th October – Edged weapons, e.g. swords, bayonets, knives, spears etc.
  • 30th November – Combined Vintagers/Guild Display Night.

    This is our annual combined night with the Vintagers. This year the theme the Vintagers have chosen for their members is “The Australian Tradition”. The Guild’s suggested theme for the night for displays by its own members is “Pistols”, but this is only a suggestion and members are encouraged to display under either theme, or as they chose, provided only that the display complies with the law. As with previous Combined Vintagers Display Nights a supper will provided. These are very popular nights with lots of good displays so come along and, if you can, do put on a display from your collection.

    As usual, there will be no December Meeting because of the holidays.

    Monday Night Displays

    We encourage those members who are individually named in the Guild’s Current Display Permit (24th July 2009 to 17th July 2014) (or who hold their own applicable display permit) to take the opportunity to make use of it. It covers all the firearms held on the Collectors Licence(s) the member listed. We set out the Guild’s Display Permit conditions below.

    Members who have items registered to an Antique Handgun Collectors Licence do not need a permit to display these, so to increase the variety at our Monday nights why not bring some of them along.

    Collectors Display Permits do not apply to items held under A & B licences. However, such items must not be possessed, carried or used other than in accordance with any licence conditions and the Firearms Act.

    Display Permits are not required for displays of Exempt Firearms, such as pre 1900 manufactured single barrelled muzzle-loading pistols, or pre 1900 manufactured longarms (which are either muzzle-loading or take ammunition which is no longer commercially available).

    Of course, Guild Displays are not limited to firearms. There is always a lot of interest in displays of militaria, edged weapons, items relating to wars or battles involving Australians and other historical matters of interest to members.

    The following are the conditions of the Guild's current club display permit: (permit only applies to those listed in it, all of whom have been notified individually by the Guild)

  • 1. This permit remains valid for the period specified whilst the Club remains an Approved Firearms Collectors Club approved by the Chief Commissioner under section 123H of the Firearms Act 1996.
  • 2. Each firearms collectors licence holder listed in this permit must be the holder of a current firearms collectors licence on any date on which such licence holder displays his or her firearms and/or ammunition pursuant to this permit.
  • 3. The club must produce this permit on demand by member of the Police Force at the relevant permit site during the display.
  • 4. The firearms collectors licence holders listed in this permit must ensure that: all firearms and/or ammunition is under the immediate supervision and control of the collector at all times whilst the display is open to the public; and all firearms and/or ammunition is secured in a manner which would prevent removal by any person other than the collector.
  • 5. The Club must take reasonable steps during the relevant display to ensure that the firearm collectors licence holders listed in this permit comply with condition 4 above.

    Licence Renewals and Permits To Acquire

    Just a reminder that all you need to do to have the Guild sign them as the Act requires, is send them with the information required by Registry to the Guild at PO Box 2976, Cheltenham, 3192. Enclose a stamped addressed envelope to Registry and we will sign it and send it on for you.

    Guild Annual General Meeting

    At the Annual General Meeting held on the 27th of July the committee was re-elected.

    President, Ian Turner, Vice-President, Noel Hall, Secretary, Dr Malcolm McKay, Asst. Secretary, Steve Tuck; Treasurer, Tim Parker; Editor, Barry Thomas; Media Officer; Ben Thomas; Committee Members; Chris Cosopodiotis, Graham Waddingham, John Fay, Winston Chandler, and Adrian Roads.

    Historic Arms Collectors Council of Australasia, Ltd (HACCA)

    The Annual General Meeting of HACCA was held in Melbourne on Saturday the 3rd of October. HACCA is our national peak body which has affiliates from all states and was created to give us a means of dealing with the federal government on matters that affect collectors and also to exchange information between collecting clubs throughout Australia. The executive for 2009 – 2010 was elected and consists of President, Dr Malcolm McKay (Vic.); Vice Presidents, Brian Dudley (NT) and Bob Courtney (ACT); Secretary, Steve Playford (SA) and Treasurer, John Burke (Vic.). Midlands Military Meet and Rendezvous (Tas.) – 28th and 29th of November 2009

    The annual Midlands Military Meet and Rendezvous will be held at Campbell Town in Tasmania on the weekend of the 28th and 29th of November. There will be displays of vehicles, reenactors, and all sorts of militaria and collectables. For further details go to HYPERLINK "http://www.mmmr.com.au" www.mmmr.com.au

    64th Melbourne Arms & Militaria Fair

    This will be held at the Melbourne Showgrounds on the weekend of the 24th and 25th of October.

    Weapons Amnesty

    The Police declared a weapons amnesty for the month of October covering weapons and firearms and allowing for surrender at police stations. Further details/ answers to questions are available from Senior Sergeant Tocock at Registry.

    Caps & Flints

    As ever your magazine is in need of articles and notes on things of interest to arms collectors – if you feel a rush of authorship coming on contact our editor Barry Thomas via the Guild Office on 9584 2907.

    Hall Set Up

    We thank all the people who help set up the tables and chairs before each meeting, and who help with packing them away after. But we can always do with a few more willing helpers to do this necessary job.

    Assistant Editor of Caps & Flints Needed

    The editorship of our magazine Caps & Flints is, like all other Guild activities, carried out by volunteers and if someone leaves or for various reasons is unable to continue in the role then sometimes finding a replacement takes time and delays can occur. In the case of our magazine this delay can mean many months often years between issues. To avoid such an occurrence the Guild is looking for a volunteer or volunteers to take on the role of Assistant Editor and work with the current Editor.

    As a modern organization we value our capacity to continue important functions of which the Editor's job is one, so it is imperative that we have a plan in place to ensure the continuity of our magazine.

    The committee therefore invites any member with an interest in desktop publishing as an adjunct to their antique arms collecting and study interests to take on the role of Assistant Editor. More than one would be ideal to more broadly distribute the considerable expertise necessary to produce Caps & Flints. The Guild will provide industry compatible software and "startup" guidance for interested members. Please give this request your earnest consideration.

    Book Review - Australian Heritage Colt Percussion Firearms

    Reviewed by John Fay

    A draft copy of John McLean’s book was previewed by Neil Speed in “Caps and Flints” (Volume 20, No. 6, January 2009). The preview included the sample descriptions of two Victorian Government 1851 Colt Navy percussion revolvers, one with an accompanying holster. Colour photographs of one of the guns, relevant markings and the holster were included.

    Neil Speed’s review was based “on the promise of the finished book, and it is looking good”. The promise is fulfilled and the book is magnificent. It is an ambitious work that attempts to record Colt percussion firearms having known and possible Australian heritage. It includes those firearms known to exist in Australia and overseas, and those identified in various historical and other records.

    The work is the result of a lifetime of assembling descriptions, photographs, serial numbers, references and extracts from various historical records. It is the result of an Australia wide survey of collectors, museums, and government departments conducted over a four year period.

    Essentially the book is a “data base” of those firearms having known or probable Australian provenance. The author has omitted firearms where it is likely or known that they have been acquired from overseas in recent times (post 1960). Many firearms are included with the comment “further details not available” but serial numbers often give a clue to possible Australian heritage. It is unfortunate that so many antique firearms in Australia today have little or no recorded provenance. In this book the provenance of each gun is recorded and, where known, the heritage details provided.

    The work assumes that readers are versed in the history and development of Colt percussion firearms and only a ‘basic production outline” of each model is included. Firearms are presented in serial number sequence, cross-referenced to Government listings where necessary. The format is in three parts, Civilian firearms, Government Firearms, and an entertaining Related Events, 1851 to 1881. A selected Bibliography, Index, Reference Map, circa 1880, and beautiful S.T. Gill illustrations are included.

    Five hundred and thirty one photographs, mostly colour, are excellent. Any inconsistency of quality is explained by the fact that they were not taken by the author or that they were taken under extremely difficult conditions. The book is a limited edition of two hundred copies and there is a hint that there may be a small companion Supplement produced in the future.

    This beautiful book is highly recommended for the Colt percussion enthusiast and the lover of Australian Colonial heritage. This is the book that we have been waiting for and John Mclean has done it.

    Hard cover; A4 size; 140 gsm paper; section binding; weight 3.3 KG; wholly Australian produced and published by the author; 671pages including comprehensive index; 592 colour photographs. Limited Edition of 200. Price AUD $195. Pack & Post within Australia $25.00. Contact: John R. McLean, PO Box 3071, Murrumbeena, VIC 3163.

  • © Copyright 2005 The Antique and Historical Arms Collectors Guild of Victoria. All rights reserved.