Traditions .50 ?


July 16, 2008, 10:50 AM
SPortsman's Guide catalog came in yesterday and he had a Traditions .50 for sale for more maney than I thought anyone would suggest on those things.

They are short "long rifles" that dispite being stocked to the muzzle actually have a two piece stock. The two pieces have brass ends that but together just behind the rear sight and that is a giveaway. The rather thin fore stock actuall is attached to the barrel by short screws.

Seven years ago this month I was at a yard sale and there was a sad looking little smoke pole among the debris in the yard. I ask about it and was told it was a kit gun, .45 caliber, terribly inaccurate, but had managed to take four deer in two years at forty yards or so.

Well a couple of twenties changed hands and I was given a partial box of Buffalo Bullet conicals in .45 caliber.

The stock seemed to have had some sort of furnature finish on it and the barrel was sloppily cold blued. Over the next month or so I piddled with it an hour here or there and stripped it all down, did some polishing of the barrel and breech plug, did a cold "plum Brown" finish on them, did a little sanding and a treenie weenie reshaping on the wood, stained it with a home made pecan stain, rubbed beeswax into the wood, put it all together and called in Macaronii. I had thought the suede cuff with the white tail teeth on it was tacky, but it looked better on the refinished gun than it had and hey, it covers up that brass joint.

Oh course I found the source of its inaccuracy during the rebuild, a loose nut behind the butt plate. Yep, the previous owner had just decided it was a .45 when it was in fact a .50. I am amazed those conicals even hit a deer at 40 yards. Believe it or not I have only fired one round from the gun since the rebuild. It has done yoman duty over the fire place and now over the TV/electronics hutch and under a Friends of the NRA sponsor painting of some big horns. It hangs on some horse shoes I bought from our farrier and bent 90 degres, wrapped in leather and nailed to the wall.

Hope the photo looks as good as I think.

-Bob Hollingsworth

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July 16, 2008, 11:03 AM
Good job of breathing life into someone else's failure.
Keep it up!

July 16, 2008, 11:05 AM
Nice job ..I passed on a chance to buy one for 100 bucks from a friend last year ...It was just a tad light weighted for my likeing but I knew it was a shooter .....oh well hind sight is always 50/50 ...If ya ever want your 20 `s back

July 16, 2008, 11:36 AM
Two piece stocks are a drawback. I got a rifle like yours made in Spain for Connecticut Valley Arms a lot of years ago. It came as a kit and I decorated it up a little with a patch box and inlays.

When I shoot it, and it is a good shooter by the way, the stock opens a gap where the two pieces meet after a few shots. I just tap the rifle butt on a sand bag to get it back tight and continue. But it is a big negative caused by probably keeping costs down in making the rifle stock.

July 16, 2008, 12:16 PM

Here's my gunshow find. It's an older Dixie .45 Plainsman with a Douglas slow twist barrel. The previous owner put a micrometer rear peep sight on and it shoots surprisingly well. It also has a large American style drum installed and what looks to be an ampco nipple. The stock has a cherry like stain and the wood is really hard too, but I don't know what kind it is. To add some character, they installed a fore end cap which is a nice touch even though it's only a grayish metallic color. The hammer and sideplate are different colors too, but so what?
It's my first & only sidelock that shoots well enough to even hit a 100 yard target with some regularity.
And because I ended up buying 2 guns from the vendor at the same time, this one only cost $75.
When it comes to used guns, you win some & you lose some. :)

July 16, 2008, 12:17 PM
Be very careful with those traditions kentucky rifles, they are sadly accurate!
My load is 110g fffg goex, .018 pillow ticking and a .490 ball

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