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BP Guys... Help a new guy get into the sport.

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by goon, Aug 5, 2003.

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  1. goon

    goon Member

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    I will start off by saying that I am not entirely a newbie. I did have a Lyman '58 Remington .36 Cal. I shot about 100 shots through it before returning it for a refund. The hole in the frame for the cylinder pin wasn't drilled properly and the gun would bind after about 20 shots.
    It broke my heart, but I was better off. It was not reparable as far as I or the gunsmith at the shop could tell.

    Anyhow, I now want another BP gun.
    I am thinking a flintlock rifle with at least a .45 cal bore. That is what I need to hunt with in PA. I don't plan to hunt with it immediately, but I will probably want to in the future.

    My choices are pretty much limited to the following:
    1.T/C PA hunter. I can get one at a local shop for $360.
    2. Lyman Great Plains Rifle. I can get my hands on one for about $400.
    3. A Pedersoli Kit gun from Dixie Gun Works. $312 and whatever else I end up putting into it.
    4. A Pedersoli Blue Ridge rifle from Cabela's. Around $425.
    5. The last option is something I just ran across the other night. The guns are kit guns from a place called Pecatonica River. Their kits are more expensive with the final cost ending up at around $400-$500. I would more than less need the gun ready to finish and put together. I just don't want to take the risk of screwing something up, so I would prefer something that requires minimal skill to complete. Here is a link.
    http://www.longrifles-pr.com/pr/long.htm

    I would like a PA rifle because they just look cool, and I am from PA. But a plains style rifle or T/C may be a better choice because they seem to be built to handle a little more rough use. I would like to know what your experiences tell you would be the best to start with. Also, if you have another option that I haven't considered yet, let me know.
    I have never fired a flintlock before, so it is possible that I may not know what I need.
     
  2. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

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    Do a search under http://www.msn.com for the "Traditional Muzzle Loader Message Hide" and look for the Traditional Muzzle Loader Trade Blanket. You'll find some good deals there. I just bought a double barrel .58 caliber Kodiak percussion rifle for less than $500. :D
     
  3. Majic

    Majic Member

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    Kit guns are fine if you take your time learning. Stock finishing is quite simple, but time consuming. You will quickly develop the touch to get a smooth finish with knowing just a few tricks. The metal work is where you are going to have to decide how much time you want to put in it. There are many options here. You can have a smooth finish (gloss)or a bead blasted finish (matte). The metal can be blued or browned with many different methods.
    The kits are fully inletted so you will have to do no cutting, but most require more than just putting parts together. You have to build it.
    If you go the route of a factory made rifle then the Lyman GPR is a very good choice.
     
  4. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

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    BTW, I like the Lyman too and want another. Got this long brass telescope just looking for a home. :) Death from Afar circa 1850.
     
  5. goon

    goon Member

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    4v50 Gary- I checked that site out a little. I am gonna look around there a little more before I buy locally. I might stumble on to a deal.

    Right now, the Lyman and the T/C are looking pretty good. I love the look of a PA rifle, but I just think that those two are better suited to what I want a flintlock for right now. They are sort of more modern, if you can call a flintlock that. I think that I will end up with one of those two first, then a PA rifle later.
    I have worked with wood before, so I know how to get a pretty good finish. I would want to brown the metal.
    But like I said, I think I will get a more modern gun first. That will give me time to research building a rifle before I buy a kit.
    Thanks for the input.
     
  6. goon

    goon Member

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    Maybe a Lyman Deerstalker?
    Short, relatively inexpensive, good name and it would fit my needs for the time being.
    Is a 1:48 twist slow enough to properly stabilize a roundball?
    Most of the other guns I have seen for roundballs are 1:60.
     
  7. Majic

    Majic Member

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    We call the 1:48" barrels "good enough" rifles. The twist is just slow enough to use rondballs and just fast enough to use conicals, but excell at neither. It gives you the ability to use either a ball or conical, where as a roundball rifle wont stabilize a conical.
    Another approach would be to purchase a 1:60" rifle of your choice then purchase a second quality 1:32" barrel to swap around for what type of shooting you are planning.
    The Deerstalker is a good rifle, but the Trades Rfle would have the extra flair and style associated with the time period you originaly posted.
     
  8. goon

    goon Member

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    I checked out a Lyman Deerstalker today, and I like it.
    I will admit that the GPR is still very cool and is on my want list, along with about half a dozen other BP guns, but I have to start somewhere.
    It would take a pretty good deal on something else to draw me away form that one at this point.
    I do love history, and that is what made me want a PA rifle in the first place.
    But I have to yield to practicality this time around.
     
  9. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

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    Nothing wrong with that.

    Good for starter and learn on it. Meet more BP enthusiasts and develop your skill and refine your tastes. One of these days, you'll get a long rifle and you'll be more discerning about which one.
     
  10. goon

    goon Member

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    One of these days, you'll get a long rifle and you'll be more discerning about which one.

    Exactly.
    I would like to learn more so I can get one that is historically correct.
    I plan to maybe get into F&I and Revolutionary War re-enacting some day, and I want a gun that will work for that.
    Hell, I just want one anyway.
    But for now, that sawed off little Lyman will do me just fine.
    I tell you the truth, the minute I pulled that hammer back and felt that thing lock up, I knew I wanted it. Hopefully next week it will come home with me.
    One thing I did notice was the flash hole. It seemed small.
    Would it be possible drill it out to a larger size or maybe just drill a little bit of it out to make the hole cone shaped?
    Does someone make a replacement plug that would have those characteristics?
     
  11. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

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    Goon, you can certainly drill out or replace the touch hole liner. Shoot it first though to see if that's even necessary. It'll probably ignite without being replaced and besides, you're going to have the get the hang of shooting a flintlock.

    BTW, larger touch hole means less pressure (dunno how much less) behind the ball as some gases vent out through the touch hole.
     
  12. goon

    goon Member

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    As for the 1:48 twist, what kind of results can I expect?
    What size groups can I expect at around 50-75 yards using roundballs?
    Thanks.
     
  13. Majic

    Majic Member

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    That's anybody's guess. The barrel will be the deciding factor on grouping. You will have to play with your load to find best groups. Powder granulation, charge weight, powder maker, powder compression when loading, patching material, and thickness all play a role in how your rifle will shoot.
    Take it out and shoot it first. Then determine what you should do to make it better for you. You need to establish a baseline first. If you have never shot a flint before, it may take a few shots just to get used to that.
     
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