New BP shooter just got a .50cal T/C Hawken and wants to remove breech plug.


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Joebklyn
April 2, 2011, 01:06 AM
I've never shot black powder before. I just got the above mentioned rifle and would like to thoroughly clean it. It's in NRA Excellent condition but has not seen daylight for 27 years. I see from the paper work that came with it that the breech plug 15/16" can screw into the back of the barrell. I'd like to remove this plug so to clean the barrell etc. Is this ok to do?

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rdstrain49
April 2, 2011, 02:34 AM
DON"T. Your Hawken can be properly cleaned without removing the breech plug. If you try to remove it, you will likely 1) screw up the barrel and or plug 2) likely not be able to properly line up the barrel and plug upon reassembly

There is absolutely no reason to remove the breech plug.

To clean my Hawken I take the barrel out of the stock, remove the nipple, place the breech end of the barrel in a bucket of hot soapy water, use a tight fitting patch and swab the barrel, repeat with clean water, wipe dry with clean patch, finish drying with compressed air, Bore Butter the inside and outside and your done. Takes less time than cleaning a centerfire.

There are almost as many ways to properly clean a side lock as there folks who shoot them. Just leave the breech plug alone.

This is also a great place to get information. Lots of very knowledgeable folks. Some internet crap, but mostly very good information. Now get off the computer and go make some smoke and have a blast:)

arcticap
April 2, 2011, 02:55 AM
I'd like to remove this plug so to clean the barrell etc. Is this ok to do?

Never try to remove it.
rdstrain49 gave you great advice.
Removing a TC breech plug requires a special jig.
Since TC rifles have a lifetime warranty, it's best to only let the TC repair dept. remove it. Otherwise you could lose your warranty protection.

rdstrain49
April 2, 2011, 10:32 AM
Arcticap brought up a very good point that I had forgotten, TCs warranty is as good as they get. Don't risk it.

Joebklyn
April 2, 2011, 12:19 PM
A giant THANK YOU!!! I knew I was in the right place.

Chawbaccer
April 2, 2011, 01:22 PM
Arcticap brought up a very good point that I had forgotten, TCs warranty is as good as they get. Don't risk it.

Their warranty doesn't cover kit guns, these have a "K" prefix in the sn.
TC did, maybe still does, sell a special wrench to remove the plug, but as is said in all posts above, don't remove it.

Zeke/PA
April 2, 2011, 01:24 PM
Years ago I purchased a T/C plug removing tool that fit closely around the breech plug as an aide to removing the plug with a large wrench.
Of course, a heavy duty vise equipped with soft jaws is a must.
A day or two soak with penetrating oil is a good idea.
For merely a good cleaning,rdstrain49's method is best, saving plug removal for emergencies such as broken ramrods.
It's NOT a good idea to routinely remove the breech plug as doing so will eventually "stretch" the threads to the point of the "flats" on the plug not lining up with those on the barrel.
If you do remove the plug, coat the threads with "never seez" before re-insertation.
Religious use of a "short starter" is a GIANT step in preventing ramrod breakage.

tazbigdog
April 3, 2011, 11:10 AM
DON'T. Your Hawken can be properly cleaned without removing the breech plug. If you try to remove it, you will likely 1) screw up the barrel and or plug 2) likely not be able to properly line up the barrel and plug upon reassembly

There is absolutely no reason to remove the breech plug.

To clean my Hawken I take the barrel out of the stock, remove the nipple, place the breech end of the barrel in a bucket of hot soapy water, use a tight fitting patch and swab the barrel, repeat with clean water, wipe dry with clean patch, finish drying with compressed air, Bore Butter the inside and outside and your done.

Great advice for the OP. I had a T/C .50 Hawken that I built from the kit. I always used the bucket method. Cleans fast and never had an issue with the bore.

On a side note, I am building a fusil de chasse flintlock. I had to screw in the breech plug and barrel. Lucky I had a master gunsmith with me that day. I WOULD NOT RECOMMEND REMOVING THE PLUG TO CLEAN THE BARREL!;)

ontarget
April 3, 2011, 10:05 PM
Tried to remove plug from a CVA plainshunter sidelock and damaged barrel and plug. I don't recommend it.

kwhi43@kc.rr.com
April 4, 2011, 11:05 AM
I made up two small 15/16 wrenches one for the barrel, one for the breach
plug. I would change plugs, percussion to flint at the range all the time. This
is how I would change my T/C from percussion to flint and back. Change
breach plugs and locks. Worked like a champ. To each his own.

Joebklyn
April 4, 2011, 11:59 AM
I will not remove the plug. Thanks again for the advice. now when I use the hot water and dishsoap method of cleaning do you remove the nipple?

arcticap
April 4, 2011, 01:06 PM
Yes. Remove the nipple and get all of the threading as clean as possible.

PapaG
April 8, 2011, 12:31 PM
TC made a special "wrench" that fit over the breech plug and bolster. You put the barrel in a vise, slide the wrench over the plug and using a LARGE crescent or pipe wrench on the TC wrench, turn the plug out. Unless you are going to try lapping the bore, or are going to rebarrel and want to use the original plug, there is absolutely no reason to take it out, however.

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