Horst Held * Antique Handguns
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Josef Schulhof (1824 - 1890) was a farmer who, in 1870, threw up his farming career and moved to Wien (Vienna) to become a gun maker. In 1882 he produced a repeating rifle. The rifle butt was hollow and contained three compartments into which cartridges could be dropped.
In 1884 he developed a mechanical repeating pistol which was used much as the same sort of system, a magazine in the grip feeding up to a reciprocating bolt operated by a finger loop. This pistol was also turned down by the military, but a small number have been sold on the commercial market. Hogg, Illustrated Encyclopedia of Firearms, page 277. Several years ago I owned numbers 3, 10 and  36, which German collectors call the lowest and highest  surviving numbers.

important book by Josef Motz & Joschi Schuy, Vom Ursprung der Selbstladepistole "from the beginning to the selfloadingpistol"


Pat. Schulhof

grip open for loading

two triggers, cocked

firing pin cocked

serial # 15

dovetail front sight, rifling 

EXTREMELY RARE EARLY DEVELOPMENTAL SCHULHOF REPEATING PISTOL Model 1884. serial # 15. caliber 10.6mm. Repeaters were the immediate predecessors to semiautomatic arms. All required a manual movement, usually of the trigger, to chamber and discharge the cartridge. Sometimes both actions were performed sequentially, the firing pin falling as the action finally closed. In most cases, upon manual release, a loading bar or trigger lever would spring back to its original position. Schulhof was credited with having developed several types of repeating pistols in about 1884. This version has a 6" barrel with a dovetail front sight. A finger loop lever under the receiver was used to close the bolt. Having traveled to its final position, the trigger protruded into the finger loop and could be pulled to fire. A small nudge released the finger loop, allowing it to spring forward. Loading was accomplished through the left grip that is retained by a tensioned latch. It is estimated Schulhof made fewer than 50 of these repeaters. Though cumbersome by today's standards, repeater pistols were an important development and provided the foundation for more modern semiautomatics. Prevenance: Dr. Geoffrey Sturgess Collection, "Vom Ursprung der Selbstladepistole" pages  36 and 37. CONDITION: The pistol retains about 80% of its original nickel finish. Areas of loss have largely drifted to patina. Excellent grips with sharp bordered checkering. Bright bore with sharp rifling and only minimal etching. Mechanically perfect. One of only four pistols I have seen in 50 years, and certainly much rarer than a Colt Paterson. Therefore I guess the word "scarce" is no exaggeration.     $18,000.  


SCHULHOF'S PATENT inscribed pistol on top of the action, according to Motz & Schuy one if the variations built in 1887 - 1888. 

Josef Schulhof (1824 - 1890) moved to Vienna in 1870 to work as a gun maker and patented a repeating rifle in 1882 and a manually operated repeating pistol in 1884. Only a small number of Schulhof's rifles and pistols were manufactured and sold on the commercial market. The highest known serial number on the pistols is 36 (see Ian Hogg's "Illustrated Encyclopedia of Firearms" on page 277). Schulhof's repeating pistols vary, sometimes significantly, from piece to piece. The current pistol has a Krag-Jorgensen style round box magazine with door on the right below the ejection port. The caliber is 7.62mm and the octagonal barrel length 5 ΒΌ". Pulling the ring trigger back pushes the bolt forward. A second trigger mechanism drops the firing pin. You can cock the pistol and wait to fire by pulling back on the cocking ring with your finger on the outside. The ring will lock back, and the bolt will be closed. The ring is angled and knurled to facilitate this better when shooting right handed. You can then pull the actual trigger when you are ready to fire. Alternatively, you can fire very rapidly by pulling the ring with your finger inside repeatedly. The firing pin automatically recocks each time the ring trigger returns forward which requires only slight pressure, and firing requires less effort than with the traditional double action revolvers from the same era.   With 80% plus original nickel plating gray patina on the balance, light scratches. The grips are  very fine and have crisp checkering, smooth oiled finish, and light pressure marks and scratches. Mechanically excellent. Certainly an unique pistol!     $12,500.   



























Schulhof 1884, serial# 3 and 36, cal. 10.6mm Schulhof.
not for sale


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