Wild Boys

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Wild Boys (2011)

Wild Boys was a short-lived Australian series about bushranging in colonial Australia. It was cancelled for good reason, but the armoury of the show is quite respectable.

The following weapons were used in the television series Wild Boys:

Contents


Handguns

Allen & Thurber Pepperbox

Early in the show, Jack Keenan (Daniel MacPherson) uses a Allen & Thurber Pepperbox alongside his Tower Percussion Pistol. A more compact example is seen on the dealer's table, and in use later.

Allen & Thurber Pepperbox revolver.
Jack primes the pepperbox at camp before the bail-up, a strong opening for a disappointing show
Jack bails up the mail coach with his pepperbox and pistol
Another pepperbox in a different length on the far right of the table in Ep. 4
Another pepperbox

Colt 1860 Army

Daniel Sinclair (Michael Dorman) has a Colt 1860 Army with a short barrel in the opening sequence of Ep. 1. Captain Gunpowder (David Field) also shows the boys an 1860 in his collection at the hut. To have a Colt in 1860s Australia usually meant to have a Navy.

Colt 1860 Army - .44 caliber
Captain apparently keeps his Colt locked up in a box, loaded...
...And primed.
Jack reloads his 1860 in a lengthy and authentic reloading sequence during his shootout with Butler in episode 3

Whitney Revolver

The Whitney Revolver makes an appearance first as Hogan's (Simon Lyndon) revolver. During a police ambush he drops it and it falls into posession of the superintendent Francis Fuller (Jeremy Sims), who returns it to Hogan later, before shooting him dead outside the hotel.
The Whitney would easilly be mistaken for a Remington at a distance. Note the smaller overall size and "Colt-style" ball-rammer. The Whitney revolver was issued to the South Australia police for a period. The one used in the series is probably an original.

Whitney Second Model Navy Revolver - .36 caliber.
Hogan threatens Francis with the Whitney
Another view, showing the shape of the frame and ball-rammer
In profile

Tranter Third Model

Superintendent Francis Fuller (Jeremy Sims) uses a Tranter Third Model revolver with a double trigger.

Tranter 54-bore self-cocking revolver
Francis aiming the tranter
Note the position of Francis' middle finger on the second trigger, and the lack of hammer spur. The Tranter was cocked with the second trigger underneath the trigger guard, which was a popular feature in colonial Australia. This shot seems to indicate the thing is in working order, which is cool to see
All you can really say at this point is lol. how did this shot get past the advisors/armourers?
Awesome detail of the double trigger in action, Ep. 4
From the same sequence, demonstrating the "self-cocking" feature (and the lack of primers)

Colt 1851 Navy

The Colt 1851 Navy appears throughout the series as a "generic" police arm. The brass-coloured frame is probably not correct for an issued revolver as the police in colonial Australia would most likely be using Colts made in London, which were all-steel framed.

Colt 1851 Navy - .36 caliber
Jack Keenan (Daniel MacPherson) pulls the 1851 Navy from the holster mounted on the seat of the armoured transport
Jack fires the 'Navy at the wagon's tongue
The sergeant Mick Scanlon (Nathaniel Dean) aims a loaded Navy at Butler in Ep. 2

Remington 1858

Captain Gunpowder (David Field) (undoubtedly a reference to the other "captains" of bushranging history) gives the trio a Remington 1858 among some other firearms when they visit his hut.

Remington 1858 New Army - .44 caliber
Daniel Sinclair (Michael Dorman) ogling one of Captain's Remingtons

Tower Percussion Pistol

Charlie the tracker (Heath Bergersen) carries what appears to be a Tower Percussion Pistol with a belt hook. The lack of standardisation and multitude of manufacturers makes it difficult to identify the origin. "Bushie" the old man who steals the boys' horses points what appears to be the same pistol at the boys.

Tower Percussion Pistol - .68 caliber
The pistol, or a nearly identical one, first appears at the camp in the opening of episode 1 alongside some cool period shooting trinkets
Charlie at Gunpowder's hut with his pistol
Charlie threatens Jack with his uncocked, un-primed pistol
A clearer view of the muzzle and captive ramrod if anybody wants to take another guess

Colt 1862 Police

During the home invasion in Ep. 3, Conrad Fischer (Alexander England) has what looks like a Colt 1862 Police revolver. The revolver used in the show seems to be mocked up with a bored-through cylinder from some other revolver, either to imitate the 1862 Police, or just to personalise Conrad's piece for characterisation. From closeups the revolver looks a little too large for an 1862 and the frame is probably just an 1860 repro.

Colt 1862 police (Uperti reproduction) - .36 caliber
Conrad with his colt
A view showing the lack of percussion nipples

LeMat Revolver

Captain has his LeMat Revolver (which up until this point hadn't been seen) confiscated by police in Ep. 3. Another strange pick for an Australian setting. An episode or two later Captain has either a new Le Mat or has managed to secure his old one somehow.

LeMat 1861 current reproduction (Cavalry version) - .44 caliber
Le Mat being confiscated by police
Closer view from 3/4 behind, as Captain puts his Le Mat at Prescott's head

Boxlock pistol

These were relatively cheap, single shot percussion pistols for personal defense at close range. There were many makers but a large volume of affordable ones in Australia would have come out of Belgium.

Absolute furthest right on the table is a small boxlock pistol.

Colt Walker

Another repro Colt, Colt Walker would have been relatively rare in this period and location.

Colt Walker 1847 .44 caliber.
A woman is threatened in a dispute over a pair of fine pistols in Ep. 4.

IXL Pocket Model

Herman Prescott (Josef Ber) is armed with an exceptional example of a IXL Pocket Model in Ep. 4. This revolver can be mistakened for a pocket Tranter but the ball-rammer gave it away.

IXL Pocket Model - .31 caliber double-action
Prescott aims the IXL at Jack in episode 4
Prescott with IXL in the left hand in episode 4

Rogers & Spencer Army

Captain Moonlite (Aaron Jeffery) carries a Rogers & Spencer Revolver in his first appearance. More distinctly American firearms which would not have made their way to the colonies in any great numbers. The R&S is a solid frame design much like a Remington or Whitney - Its distinguishing feature is the smooth curve on the rear of the frame, where most contemporary revolvers would be scalloped.

Rogers & Spencer Army model - .44
Moonlite bails up a bail up at the start of Ep. 5, Rogers & Spencer in the left hand, Whitney in the right

Spur trigger "Suicide special"

Rupert Wentworth (Charlie Garber) tries to attack Moonlite with it in the opening of Ep. 5, but suffers a chain fire and burns his arm (adopting the shooting position from the superintendent in the previous episode - perhaps someone pointed it out in production)

Wentworth pulls the revolver
Wentworth adopts a firing stance you'd only ever need to use once

Colt 1849 Pocket

In Ep. 7 a couple of Colt Pockets appear and continue to make appearances as the series goes on. They start off as Jessie West's pair, but Jack is seen using one later as well.

Colt 1849 Pocket - .31 caliber.
Jessie bails up the boys with her Colts
Jack threatens Francis with one of the pockets - Francis' Tranter in the foreground, commandeered by Jessie

Back-action pistol

For one shot in the series an extra is seen using a back-action single shot "travelling pistol" as they would have been known in the day. These would have been relatively common and had a multitude of makers, very little standardisation. Nock produced a bunch of them, among other English makers, and many would have also been put out by the nameless Belgian makers. The back-action placed all the lockwork behind the hammer (in the pistol's case, inside the grip) instead of underneath/beside the barrel. This made for a more slender piece.

A similar example. Note the lockplate extends to the rear
Good frame of the extra's back-action
Probably the same pistol to the left of the Colt being handled in this shot

Longarms

Hawken

Captain sticks the boys up with a Hawken Rifle when they appear at his hut. This is probably not accurate as the Hawken was never popular in colonial Australia, usually rather the Enfield or, for the more discerning shooter, the Whitworth.

Hawken Rifle - .50 caliber
Captain has the boys "covered" with the Hawken

Sharps Carbine

Captain demonstrates a Sharps Carbine in "54 calibre" to the boys in the hut. The Sharps didn't have a strong following in Australia (but rather the Snider conversions in Victoria, Alex Henry rifle in NSW, and a few Braendlin-Albini in South Australia) Furthermore, the Sharps was not available in "54 Calibre." Common parlance at this time would most likely have referred to projectile measurements in "bore." 54 bore was a common projectile weight in Australia and the British Empire for revolvers at the time, and is equal to about 442/100ths. Certainly no police force in Australia was ever equipped with the Sharps. The bandit Joey Butler (Diarmid Heidenreich) also has a Sharps in addition to his Whitney revolver.

Sharps 1874 Cavalry Carbine - .45-70 caliber
Trooper moving into position to ambush with a Sharps
Jack Keenan (Daniel MacPherson) takes a look down the sights of Captain's Sharps
Joey Butler trains his sharps on Jack after finding his campsite
The Sharps is apparently standard police issue in Wild Boys' vision of colonial Australia.

Pattern 1853 Enfield

Captain also has in his armoury, what would have been the more common Enfield Pattern 1853. He names it in "fifty-seven calibre" which, like his description of the Sharps, sounds awkward for the era.

Pattern 1853 Enfield - .577 caliber
Captain shows Daniel the Enfield
The business-end of an Enfield used by Francis. As the series goes on, more Enfields start showing up in police hands - a good thing. They still have no shortage of Sharps though.
Trap with an Enfield
More delicious Enfields in the police armoury

Percussion shotgun

A couple of double-barrel percussion guns appear in the show. It's unclear whether this is the same prop used over, or multiple. It is probably a genuine example as they are not hard to source in Australia.

Double Barreled Percussion Shotgun - 10 Gauge
A coach driver pulls a shottie on the boys in one of the early bail-ups
Mary Barrett (Zoe Ventoura) with the hotel shotgun (seen in other shots behind the bar)
Mary cocks the gun)



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