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Italian Vetterli Model 1870/87/15 Caliber 6.5 Carcano

Italian Vetterli Model 1870/87/15 Caliber 6.5 Carcano


 
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Our Price: $299.99

Quantity in Stock:20
Product Code: VETT0001


OPTIONS:
Hand Select Overall Condition (+$100) [Add $100.00]

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Description
 

We just received a small quantity of original Italian Vetterli Model 1870/87/15. All rifles are converted for the Carcano 6.5 ammunition.

The condition is astonishingly fair to good overall condition. Regular condition guns might have a minor crack or might have some slight corrosion. They also do not come with a cleaning rod.
Hand select rifles are generally very good to excellent overall condition. May have a cleaning rod with H/S option. These rifles have been in storage in Ethiopia for a century.

We offer a hand select option for an additional $100.00.

These rifles are considered Antique and therefore do not require an FFL transfer. A government Photo ID like Drivers License or passport will be required to purchase these rifles. Please send your ID to sbarry@rtifirearms.com along with your order number. Thank you for your business!

ANTIQUE = NO FFL OR C&R REQUIRED.

Please note: please view our Terms and Conditions Section 9 in regards to the condition of these rifles. Thank you for your business.

History:

The M1870 Vetterli was the Italian service rifle from 1870-1887, when it was gradually replaced with the M1870/87 Italian Vetterli-Vitali variant. The M1870 was a single-shot bolt action rifle chambered for the 10.4mm Vetterli centrefire cartridge, at first loaded with black powder and later with smokeless powder. The M1870 was based upon the M1869 Swiss Vetterli but simplified for economy.

M1870/87

10.4mm Fucile di Fanteria, Modello 1870/87 Vetterli-Vitali

In 1887 (until 1896), the Italian Army began converting the M1870 to a four-shot repeating rifle, based on the system designed by Italian artillery captain, G. Vitali. This conversion added a box magazine fed from a Swiss-style fabricated steel and wood stripper clip holding four cartridges, in the same caliber (10.4x47R mm) as before. The clip is pressed into the magazine, until the last round catches under the Cartridge retainer, and then the clip is withdrawn using the "pull string" in the top wooden frame of the clip. Clips of cartridges were supplied in a soldered sheet steel box, holding six clips.

The conversion to the Vitali magazine was done on the long rifle, the TS (special troops musketoon) and possibly some of the Carabinieri carbines; No Vitali conversions were done to the Moschetto da Cavalleria for metropolitan Italian troops. In 1888, the Fondo Coloniale (Eritrea) requested 500 Vitali-converted Vetterli cavalry carbines for the Eritrean Native Cavalry ("spahi"—Swahili for "horse-soldier"). There are currently five known examples still in existence ( one in Australia, two in the US, two in Italy). Collectors refer to it as the M1870/88 V.V.Eritrean cav carbine. The Regio Esercito (Royal Army) Cavalry units maintained the M1870 single shot Moschetto da cavalleria until replaced by the M1891 Moschetto da cavalleria, in 1893.

The conversion is indicted by a cartouche "Artig. Fab. D'armi Terni 1888" (dates vary), on the butt stock. The center of the cartouche displays a Crest of Savoy and the word, Riparazione (Italian for repair) is directly below the cartouche. Shortages of small arms appeared from the very beginning of Italy’s entrance into World War I on the side of the Allies.

As more of the population mobilized for the first total war in European history, the supply of modern small arms fell short before the end of 1915 and a large number of obsolete Modello 1870/87 Vetterli-Vital were issued to newly formed regiments that were not expected to be in combat, however, troops carried these antiquated rifles into battle on several occasions.

As well, in 1916, Italy sent a large number of Vetterli-Vitali rifles to Russia; ammunition and components were contracted for by Britain to the Remington Armory. These "tsarist" rifles eventually ended up in Republican hands in the Spanish Civil War, as the Soviet Union emptied its depots of all the old black powder and early smokeless rifles it had inherited after the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917.

M1870/87/15

During World War I, many M1870/87 rifles were converted to share the same 6.5mm smokeless powder round instead of the inferior black powder rounds as the primary service rifle, the Carcano, by adding a 6.5mm barrel lining and a modified M91 Carcano magazine. The barrel sleeving was called the "Salerno method"; The bolt face was also machined to accept the smaller diameter 6.5 mm cartridge head, and the firing pin shortened. These conversions were used for rear echelon troops (guards, training, etc.) and were rarely, if at all, fired with standard 6.5 mm military ball ammunition. After WWI, many of these rifles were assigned to the colonies of Tripolitania, Fezzan and Cyrenaica (Libya) and also to Eritrea and Somalia, again, as rarely-fired training rifles. These rifles were used again in the Second Italo-Ethiopian War, mostly by native African soldiers.[1] During World War II, they were used only by fascist Blackshirts paramilitaries.[2]

It is considered by knowledgeable collectors[who?] that due to the rifle's age and general condition (manufactured in 1870-1890s) and converted twice (1887-90s and again 1915-16), that the black powder technology of the Vetterli design is not suitable for repeated use (i.e. intense combat use) with normal Italian ball ammunition of 6.5 mm, or its present-day commercial equivalent. Even back in the 1920s, anecdotal accounts of Salerno sleeves loosening under "hot" fire (they were soft-soldered in place) and subsequent "blow-by" experience since the 1950s appearance of these rifles as surplus has led to safety concerns.[3]


Average Rating: Average Rating: 4.5 of 5 4.5 of 5 Total Reviews: 12 Write a review »

  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
 
5 of 5 Very Satisfied April 21, 2022
Reviewer: Dan from South Carolina  
Rifle arrived only one week after ordering and was well-packed.  Rifle was expectedly dirty but was in excellent and complete (including cleaning rod) condition.  Another great rifle from RTI.

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  1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
 
5 of 5 Vetterli Carcano February 14, 2022
Reviewer: Eli H from Missouri  
Rifle arrived in great condition (especially for its age) with 80% or better finish remaining on the metal and a stock that had not been sanded or otherwise modified (minus the conversion from Vitali). Not a spec of rust anywhere and the bolt has no cracks or signs of failure. Only thing missing was the cleaning rod, which was a "may or may not be present" item anyway.

I did NOT choose "hand select"

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  1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
 
5 of 5 Awesome Rifle! February 5, 2022
Reviewer: Jeffrey H from Port Charlotte, FL United States  
Very happy with my purchase. The rifles bluing is in excellent condition, the numbers are matching, and the stock looks very nice! The stock also has a very bold "AOI" Italian East Africa stamp on the stock!

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  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
 
5 of 5 Great Rifle! December 15, 2021
Reviewer: Keith E. from Maryland  
I paid for the hand select and received a really nice gun, with cleaning rod and excellent bore! Needed a bit of cleaning, but that should be expected from a 132 year old gun. Customer service was outstanding!!

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  2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
 
4 of 5 Piece of history October 3, 2021
Reviewer: David from IL  
Customer service great, gun was in fair condition but after a lil ticketing fires like a champ. Thank you RTI.

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