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Old October 22, 2014, 01:56 AM   #1
Join Date: August 12, 2014
Posts: 1
.50 wesson rifle

anybody got any loading data for this muzzleloader.thanks
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Old October 22, 2014, 07:30 PM   #2
D. Buck Stopshere
Join Date: October 11, 2014
Location: South Central NC
Posts: 8
I sold a few over the past 40 years. They were made by Palmetto Armory and sold mostly by Dixie Gun Works. Parts are probably still available from VTI (www.vtigunparts.com). They weren't real popular in numbers.

I looked in all my Black Powder Digest & Lyman Muzzleloading books and it didn't show up. Neither did it appear in the Dixie Gun Works catalogs I have back to 1979. However, I found it in an old 1983 Track of The Wolf catalog, Page 52, with all the specs.

The 28" 1 & 1/8" A-T-F .50 caliber cut-rifled barrel has a 1:72" twist and as TOTW states, "This twist is for heavy loads of FFG and tight patched balls..."

The rifle pictured in the catalog is fitted with a false muzzle. guide starter, and loading rod with bore protector. It also indicates that the gun weighs in at 9-1/2 lbs. I would classify this today as a light-bench rifle by NMLRA standards.

The 1984 Gun Digest, page 401, also lists the "Dixie Wesson Rifle" with the same configuration. Next to it is a "Richland Percussion Wesson Rifle" with the same configuration. It was introduced in 1977 to the American market.

I seem to remember that some of the Wesson rifles I sold, weighed less than that, like 5 to 7 lbs.

I'd start at 40 grains of GOEX FFG, and shoot 3 or 5 shot groups at a target at 25 yards, and shooting from a solid bench-supported position. Increase charge in either 5 grain or 10 grain increments. Do the barrel swabbing in consistent intervals.

It just depends on whether yours is the 5 to 7 lb model or the 9-1/2 lb "baby". The heavier & thicker the barrel, the lighter the recoil, and the more stable the projectile. I figure 100 grains will be the maximum load if yours doesn't weigh in at 9-1/2 lbs. Your shoulder will let you know.

Sorry it took so long to answer, I had a devil of a time locating the Wesson Rifle.

Does your Wesson rifle have a 1 & 1/8" barrel A-T-F (across-the flats), 28" long, and total weight of 9-1/2" lbs?

Hope this helps,
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Old October 23, 2014, 07:57 AM   #3
Join Date: January 28, 2007
Location: NE Ohio
Posts: 3,034
I believe there were at least two variations of the Wesson Rifle. A heavy one with the false muzzle and a lighter version minus the muzzle. replica Arms (Marietta, Oh) imported a lighter version but I do not recall who made it. Other companies also had there import marks stamped on them.
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Old October 23, 2014, 12:16 PM   #4
D. Buck Stopshere
Join Date: October 11, 2014
Location: South Central NC
Posts: 8
Thanks for the confirmation. I always thought there were two different models by weight. The last couple I sold were the 6-7 lb models without the false muzzle.

I suspect "washbuster" has the lighter model. TOTW also listed on the facing page, a Wesson rifle in .32 caliber in both an adult size and a "boy's rifle" by Palmetto Armory.

I believe Palmetto Armory made all the different models discussed here, and the models were sold by the various importers like DGW.
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