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Range Report - Pedersoli Sharpes

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by mbott, Aug 11, 2003.

  1. mbott

    mbott Member

    Dec 25, 2002
    Central, OH
    Range Report - Pedersoli Sharps

    At last years Midwest Cruffler Get Together (a Ohio gathering of crufflers), I had voiced the hope that by this years, I'd have one of the Ohio Ordnance's 1918A3 SLR. Towards year end, I realized it just wasn't going to happen. So, surveying the landscape, I tried to decide what would be the next addition to my collection.

    Then, on 2 Feb of this year, Mr. Greg Topp yammered about the Sharps he bought with his "government savings account" and the fire was lit again. Took me 'til late May to scratch up the necessary funds and then it was off to Dundee, MI and Cabela's.

    They had a Davide Pedersoli "1874 Sharps Heavy Target Model Rifle" in .45-70 that had my name all over it. 1/3 octagon, 2/3 round 34" barrel with vernier tang sight and globe front sight with interchangeable inserts. 13 pounds heavy but balanced.

    Ordered bullets (the wrong ones), brass and various other items and threw together my first black powder loads. Off to the range I go when disaster struck. After the first two shots, I couldn't hit the water if I'd fallen out of a boat. Took me forever just to clean the fouling out of that 34" tube, and I still hadn't been able to sight it in.

    Now, it's two months later and the time was right to try again. This time, I got the basic sighting in accomplished with some factory .45-70 loads from PMC. Started at 25 yards and got it hitting consistently 1 inch high. Took the target out to 100 yards and fine tuned the sights to just over a 5 1/2" group. Not bad for me and my eyes.

    The moment of truth: time for my black powder loads. .After two months of reading everything I could find on black powder cartridge reloading, here's what I was using:

    Meister Bullets (SPG-45-4053) 405 gr. .458 w/3 lube groove. prelubed with SPG
    60 Gr Elephant FFG from a 24" drop tube, then compressed .2"
    Starline cases
    .030 milk carton wad
    Magnum LR primers

    Loaded the first one, sighted, set the trigger, then touched the trigger and BOOM! (Safety note repeated here: "Got to be careful with the double set trigger---as in don't touch the damn thing until you have the sight picture!")

    9 ring, just a bit low. (Outers Score Keeper 100 Smallbore Rifle target). Two huffs with the blow tube and reload. 8 ring at 2 o'clock. 2 huffs again. 11 more rounds down range, all after two huffs with the blow tube. Final score is 1 dead center 10, 2-10's, 4-9's, 6-8's and a "flyer" (he claims it cut the edge!!) in the 7 ring.

    Fouling was almost non-existant. Cleaned up in less than 1/4 of the time as the first attempt. A good time was had by all :)


    (edited for spelling)
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2003
  2. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 19, 2002
    Thank you for that report on your modern gun. When I first saw the thread title, I immediately thought of Berdan's Sharpshooters and their Sharps rifle.
  3. BigG

    BigG Mentor

    Dec 24, 2002
    Thanks for the report. Sounds like one fine shootin' arn! :D

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