Mess Webley (or the mess I’m going to make of one)

IMHO the Mk VI in .455 is probably the "nicest" pistol I have ever had the pleasure to shoot - for recreational purposes.

Mechanically sound, extremely robust and represents the perfect balance between form and function.

The .455 round produces minimal recoil, trigger pull when firing double action can be a problem for some initially but hey ho -you can always shoot single action until you have mastered double action.

As for ammunition it's still available but you may have to ferret around a bit but in the interim you can always use factory .45 as a fun round.

Hand loading is always possible and not necessarily an expensive option.

I too share your dislike of the shaved Webleys that need/use the half-moon clips.


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I’m on the hunt for a Webley and as I live somewhere where that sort of thing is encouraged I was wondering if the hive mind might have some ideas about what to look out for.

Ideally I’d like it in .455 but I’d settle for a .38 S&W version. I’ve taken a set against the ‘shaved’ .45 ACP conversions because I’m a woman and that’s bloody that.

Any thoughts?


On. The. Webley.

Mother was all of five foot plus nothing, weighing some seven stone soaking wet but still managed to cart carry a 0.455, so go for it. It always seemed a more traditional calibre than the 0.38 arrangement.
As for ammunition it's still available but you may have to ferret around a bit but in the interim you can always use factory .45 as a fun round.
Err, yerwot?

Firstly, it doesn't fit unless you muck about with it. Secondly, its service pressure is above that of a a .455 proof round and tends to blow converted Mk.VI's up after too much use...
I would agree with M&2V regarding .455 - my lads used to shoot my Mk VI when they were teenagers with no problems.

Fiocchi still make the proper .455 ammo, however you need to be aware of a couple of issues if you reload.. The Webley chambers are slightly "choked" in that the exit diameter is slightly less than the barrel bore diameter. This is because the proper Webley bullets are hollow base, and the skirt is allowed to flare slightly as the bullet crosses the cylinder gap, reducing gas leaks and compensating for any cylinder misalignment. Some ignorant people (usually of 'Murican origin) don't understand this, and use flat based bullets wot don't work.. they then end up reaming out the choke in the cylinder, thus buggering the gun, so watch for this when you are looking for one. As others have said, also step away from any Wobbly that has had the rear end of the cylinder skimmed to take .45ACP in half moon clips.

I sold my stash of .455 bullets to M&2V for slotting piggies, but you can still get the proper moulds to cast the hollow based bullets. You need to use fairly soft lead and get it hot enough to fill the mould..
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Quite a few in SA dating back to the Boer war and subsequent world wars. Classic Arms in Witbank may be able to help you if you want to go thrugh all the hassle of bringing in stuff.


IMO it would be a good thing to export a lot of historic firearms right now before the idiot factor running the country get it into their heads to destroy them. Already lost a lot of good Enfields due to the penchant for 'sporterising' them a few years ago.
It’s a bit coals to Newcastle but might be worth it for the right one.

It breaks the brass and rubber mechanism that acts as my heart to see Enfields mutilated like that. Our Bubbas love their ‘sporterizing’ as well. Fcuking criminal.
Do you reload? I think new .455 ammunition might be difficult to get hold of, whereas the .38 versions might be easier to feed. I've no idea on prices where you are, but the .38 revolvers are also cheaper (and easier to find) than the .455 ones here.

I don't have a Webley myself, but an Enfield revolver .38, which I paid around £150 for a couple of years ago.
I don’t reload but I have a dwarfish chap in Baltimore that does my bidding in that line. .455 is currently USD$35.99 for 50 rounds but it is available. The trick seems to be finding one that hasn’t been trimmed down for .45ACP.

Absolutely agree with all points re: .38
Have a beady eye on Singapore Police job with the frame safety. I’ll let you know how I get on.

Many thanks to all of you. You can have a fondle (Of. The. Webley) if you’re ever in Virginia...*Sigh* The Commonwealth Of Virginia that is.

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