Item number : UK HAW BC AA70H-2
Origin : United Kingdom
Style : English Style
Gauge : 12
Suitable for pinfire : Yes
Stabilizer : Yes
Cartridge pusher : Yes but fails
Maker : G. & J.W. HAWKSLEY Ltd, Carver Street, Sheffield
Markings : “G. & J.W. HAWKSLEY’S .” and “12” on press lever
Biggest length : 270 mm
Weight : 416 grams
Length of shell tube : 44 mm.
Suspension of press lever : Single
Press handle : Steel lever with horn handle.
Turning handle : Steel patented lever with horn handle
Closing cup : Brass
Materials body : Cast Iron
Paint : Retains almost all of the original red paint
Table clamp : Top oval with little handmade pins. Like Dixon does. (After 1947?)
Screw top round without pins.
Condition : Good although cartridge pusher fails
Repairs : None
The only written information available is from the (Cornell Publications) reprint of the Hawksley catalogue from 1889. This catalogue is not complete. There are tools that are not mentioned in this catalogue.
Unlike Dixon, Hawksley does not list the catalogue numbers on the tools themselves. It is therefore often a matter of guessing what the catalogue number of a tool is. I have done my very best to achieve some ranking.
Most of the Hawksley bench rest closers – apart from the A50 and (A)A44 models – have numbers with an (A)A70 in the number. Actually, the only exception is the A31C. That the tool with the Dixon no.5 press lever.
The best quality Hawksley tools have horn handles. The 2nd and 3rd quality tools have ebony handles. Quite often it is very difficult to tell the difference between ebony and horn. The kind of horn (buffalo?) Hawksley used is very dark; black. Just as ebony. If you have both materials in a pure form you can heat them and smell the difference. The handles of loading tools however are always a bit greasy. That means that you always get the same scent.
The 1889 catalogue describes the AA70H as follows:
“Short barrel Turnover, japanned, case hardened lever, pusher out, horn handles.
Difference between this one and AA70H is the top of the table clamp and the shape of the press lever. This press lever is genuinely Hawksley‘s.