Gevelot 11mm Sliding-Chamber Pinfire Rifle


This rifle design was developed by the Gevelot cartridge company to compete with the Modele 1866 Chassepot for French military use, although it was not successful in that attempt. The weapon has an uncommon sliding chamber mechanism in which the cartridge does not move forward into the chamber, but rather stays fixed in place while a cylindrical chamber slides over it when the action is closed. The cartridge itself is a modified type of pinfire with the pin located in the center of the cartridge case head, in line with the barrel and cartridge (as opposed to being offset 90 degrees like typical pinfire revolver ammunition).

Thanks to the Institute of Military Technology for allowing me to have access to this rifle so I can bring it to you!


  1. Thanks for posting this!
    Has this chamber design been used in anything else? i could see this as a 40mm Grenade Launcher design.

  2. I think I can see why it was designed this way. The problem with a needle gun is that the needle is in the middle of every detonation, which tends to be hard on it. Conventional pinfires have the pin sticking out, which always presents a danger of accidental detonation.

    Having a pin on the axis makes that kind of accident less likely, but means that pushing a cartridge into the chamber by its base has its own dangers, especially if the chamber is fouled and a firm push is needed. This design avoids that danger, at the cost of more machining.

  3. Hmm… a single-shot/lever-action hammer-fired rifle with a cardboard cartridge which supposedly loads faster than a Martini-Henry. Had this been given a more conventional sliding bolt, a Winchester-styled operating lever, a metallic cartridge, and a box magazine, how would things have played out?

      • Oops, I forgot to check. But hypothetically one could try .50-70, if that had been exported to France later. I wasn’t referring to any cartridge in particular earlier.

        • It is cardinal error to assume that technical progress is uniform for all places in world.
          Maybe it would be blatant example, but consider:

          which are currently most probably in prehistoric era or maybe ancient era.
          For them, probably even cross-bow would be advanced technology of war and they would consider Renault FT to be stronger that God Of War (assuming they have it), despite being outdated by French standards.

          • Seeing their intent to be cutoff from the world, its a good question would it really impress them.

            Like, they dont care about it at all, I don’t think showing them any technology would produce indian shiny pearls or cargo cults effect.

  4. Not related to the video at all (though it was pretty good), more like a request:

    Every time I ask people if they knew about the Remington Model 81, people look at me and just kind of raise their eyebrows and start asking if I’m talking about the Model 1897 Trench Gun. Could you enlighten our folks at home about this forgotten FBI classic? I know that, operationally it’s pretty much the same of the Chauchat (another one of my favorites), but my grandfather who served as a State Trooper in New york still remembers the rifle fondly.

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