Laidley Snapping Cartridge

These were produced as early firing dummys with blackened wooden bullets and gutta percha “primers” to protect the firing pin. My question is if there is any significance to the blackened base on the example on the left below? Simply the preference of different manufacturers? It’s black paint rather than staining.



My understanding is these were for the most part arsenal or armorer made which allows for lots of variation. Right one was once Bar primed

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Are there any references which tell how these were to be used?

There is a short mention in H., W., & S. Vol.1, pg 211.
There were a number of examples listed in the Butweiller sales as below - listed separately as Laidley or Hobbs although, as best I can tell there is no difference between them.

Latter image from V.10, 2
Hobbs held the patent:

Pete, the round on the left of your image looks like it has some residual black paint on the base and has the same slightly bottlenecked configuration as my black-based round. Is that just old/hopeful eyes or can you tell.

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Does anyone know why they are called “Laidley Snapping Cartridges”, since they were patented by Hobbs?

I need to look, I think I might have one.


Yes there may be some black residue, or just age?
The one on the right also has the blackened bullet, but I just didn’t happen show that side of it, It fain but done.

We sold two variations see .1-288 &, 3-510

Per H. W. & S.:
The earliest known loading of a dummy cartridge in this caliber (.45) was in 1881. This was the “Laidley Dummy Cartridge” invented by a Colonel Laidley of the Ordnance Corps…It was also called the “Laidley Snapping Cartridge.”

Probably not the first instance of the inventor not holding the patent.

Rich, much appreciated, thanks!