M1857 & M1857/59 carbine

The first kammerlader carbine was the M1857, 12,55 mm cavalry carbine as seen on the top in the picture. It is a fabulous little piece! Regretfully there was only produced a couple of hundred or so of them, so it is pretty difficult to find. In 1859 there was also a demand for carbines from the artillery. Some of the M1857’s were then converted, cutting off a little of the front end and adding a bayonet lug. The really sad thing is that most of these were stored at Paléet in Oslo Centre – and that was bombed by the Brits under WW2. The one I have comes from there. The iron is original, the rest is – eh – new.

This was to be the first small-bore long-gun in the Norwegian army. Norways union-partner Sweden had also started considering a small-bore, but the M1857 came just a bit too early and the 12,55 mm bore was not used on any other rifles. The picture shows the M1857 and a M1860 in 11,77 mm.

The M1857 also had a pretty short chamber compared to the later rifles and carbines. The picture compares a M1866 carbine (cartridge version) with the M1857. The later kammerlader models therefor carried a much harder punch. The M1857 & M1857/59 with the different ammunition and soft punch were taken out of use already in the 1860’s.