Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by Darth-Vang, Jun 26, 2021.
I dismantle the gun and try to dry the wood thoroughly. Even to the point of laying the stock out and getting air flow to help dry it.
I use true oil finish and rub it in the barrel channel and under the lock plate etc to protect those hidden areas.
My old Hawken has been out in the woods on many a rainy day. It shows it too. I kinda like it. Character.
If you look closely at the lock screw. A nasty crack developed after a rainy-day hunt.
So my usual cleaning routine works whether the rifle got wet or stayed dry. Remove the barrel and lock from the stock and clean them with soapy water, finish with a scant wipe of CLP on the outside metal surface. Towel dry any moisture off the stock. If it looked like water soaked into the wood (it never has), I might wait until the next day for reassembly, but not longer than that.
However...after a hunt in the rain I might pull the barrel and lock off. What I like about my flintlocks is that there is no question if moisture has got into the flash hole and main charge. It's right there to see. It's much more difficult to remove the barrel as it is pinned to the stock, so my barrel channel is well sealed and the barrel greased, as I rarely remove the barrel from the stock. I will also put some wonder lube or some waxy lube along the barrel where it meets the stock. But we ain't talking about rock-locks.
If it's really raining hard, I'll take a tarp and sit under that all day, or stay in camp.
Now my cap-guns, I can usually be sure/make sure that the cap is well sealed to the nipple, so it's pretty safe. If I know it's going to be really wet when I go out, I can put a SMALL amount of bee's wax on the nipple to really seal it well. My cap guns are actually my rainy day guns, not because I can't keep my flintlocks running in the rain, but because I'm too lazy. And the percussion guns are easy to remove the barrels, being a 1861 Springfield and a TC Hawken. On the Springfield, I can get right to the main charge, poke it, and decide it is wet or dry. The TC has that weird flash channel, no good way to check the main charge that I know of. But having said that, I usually avoid firing the gun, cleaning, and reloading after a wet hunt, unless it was REALLY wet. Drying, cleaning the outside, removing the lock and barrel is normally as far as I would go. Oh and I will remove the nipple, make sure it's clear, and check the area under the nipple.
I like to use denatured alcohol, isopropyl can have a very high water content.
I 2nd the wax, although I use carnuba auto wax as that's what I had the 1st time I was taking my smoke pole out in bad weather, rubbed under barrel and lock and all over parts then reassembled and wiped off, been doing that ever since over 15 yrs and no rust or warping, I do dry carefully if they get soaked.
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