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Vetterli Model 1870/87 Carbine Caliber 10.4x47mmR

Vetterli Model 1870/87 Carbine Caliber 10.4x47mmR

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Our Price: $349.99

Quantity in Stock:(Out of Stock)
Product Code: VETT0003

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


We just received a small quantity of Italian Vetterli Model 1870/87 factory carbines from Ethiopia. All carbines are chambered in the 10.4x47mmR cartridge. These carbines are very rare and have not been imported for decades. Don't miss this chance to get a unique carbine!

These Vetterlis are in good overall condition. You may see some small cracks in the stock and finish wear as they are over 130 years old and have endured a long service life. Hand select rifles are generally very good condition. These rifles have been in storage in Ethiopia for about century. Please note: there are 2 different types of rear sights found on these carbines, the one shown in the photos is the longer type, however we also have the shorter rear sight leaf type.

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

These rifles are ANTIQUES, NO FFL REQUIRED. Photo of Driver's License required. These rifles can be shipped directly to a business or home address.

After you place your order, please email a photo of your driver's license with your order number to ffl@rtifirearms.com. Thank you for your business!

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


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.


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The clip is pressed into the magazine, until the last round catches under the Cartridge retainer, and then the clip is withdrawn using the "pull string" in the top wooden frame of the clip.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.

Average Rating: Average Rating: 5 of 5 5 of 5 Total Reviews: 2 Write a review »

  1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
5 of 5 Excellent buy! rare AOI 1875 Glisendi. great bore! October 2, 2022
Reviewer: Dan M from Michigan  
Very happy with it. These are rare rifles. On top of that it was an even rarer AOI marked Glisendi 1875 carbine. They only made carbines and only in 1875. If it had Ethiopian script i would've been ecstatic because that would make it exceptionally rare. These Ethiopian marked rifles are extremely rare. It was in great condition with a really good bore. strong rifling extending to the muzzle crown with very little pitting. For a black powder gun of this age that is exceptional. I like that it had an early date. Overall it is in great shape. works as it should. correct bolt and stock. Correct sights. It hasn't been cut down or altered in any way. If it had a cleaning rod or had Ethiopian script i would have been ecstatic. But as is I'm very very pleased. I would buy again and probably will if they still have some left. Really great addition to my collection.

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  1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
5 of 5 Great rifle September 23, 2022
Reviewer: Shane from KS  
I ordered one of these and the first one I received was junk. Had a butchered for a cut down rifle stock. Barrel was horrible. Barrel was bulged and bent. And wasn’t even tight on the receiver and couldn’t have tightened it with out shimming it. I contacted RTI and they were Quick about making it right. I sent it back and the replacement I received was a beautiful rifle. Correct stock with no damage, most of the finish was still in tact, and the bore was beautiful. I definitely can not complain about the replacement one. This is a great company and easy to work with. I’ve bought 10 rifles from them and definitely planning to buy more.

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