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Pedersoli 1853 3-band Enfield

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by desmobob, Oct 9, 2019.

  1. desmobob

    desmobob Member

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    I've struggled to find a Minie load that will stabilize in this rifle the few times I tried to shoot them. I started with two styles of Minies from the old and new style Lyman molds. My initial loads were with 65 grains of Pyrodex Select RS and Triple 7 in FFG and FFFG.

    I was getting keyholes when I was able to even hit the paper at 25 and 50 yards. Thinking the bullets were mistakenly cast with an alloy rather than pure lead and the skirts weren't expanding, I upped the charge gradually. Still, no luck. I eventually gave up.

    Today, at the advice of Ethan Ripplinger at Track of the Wolf (where I bought the Minies) I started with a much lower charge of 30 grains. He told me the larger charges were likely blowing out the skirt on the modern style Minies. The light charges of Pyrodex were not igniting well with RWS or CCI musket caps. More keyholes. I switched to the Triple 7 FFFG I had with me. 35 grains... more keyholes. 40 grains... BINGO! Round holes and groups on the paper!

    As is common with this rifle, the groups were almost 12" high (and a few inches left) but I can correct that with some sight work.

    I have the really nice bullet sizer and bullet greaser that Pedersoli offers. The rifle, and these tools, are of excellent quality. I'm glad I finally have them all working well together.

    The next range outing will be to fine-tune the load. I'd like to use this big rifle in the deer woods this fall. I have this thing about somehow justifying each rifle purchase by using them to kill a deer at least once. The Enfield is the only rifle in the house (other than rimfires) that hasn't put venison in the freezer...
     
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  2. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    I had the same rifle-musket for Civil War reenacting. Loved that thing. Sold it wieh I Moved to Alaska (No Civil War reenacting up here.) Wish I still had it..."just cuz."
     
  3. desmobob

    desmobob Member

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    Alaska didn't have any units in the Civil War? ;)

    The looks and quality of that rifle have me itching to buy other Pedersoli replicas. All I need is the money to do it, and I'll be all set! :)
     
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  4. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    What’s different about modern Minies? And what does blowing out the skirt mean? Does it separate?
     
  5. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Member

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    Also post a pic of your cool rifle
     
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  6. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    There is a group that does Mountain Man living history up here, but I've never had anything to do with them.

    Yup. They're good, but they're spendy. Lot of fun. I Haven't done any blackpowder anything since I sold it. (AK doesn't have a BP or primitive weapon hunting season, sadly.)
     
  7. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    Depends on the construction material. As with casting your own lead projectiles for modern metallic cartridges, you can change the malleability of the projectile by changing the mixture of tin and antimony as compared to the amount of lead used. A period correct minie ball would probably have been pure lead (at least as I understand it) and therefore very soft and malleable, which equates to the base of the projectile expanding and engaging the rifling properly, thereby creating the proper rotation to stabilize the projectile in flight, resulting in good accuracy. If, however, the projectile is too hard, it either won't expand to engage the rifling, or, if it is brittle, the hollow base will simply break apart under pressure. In either case, you have poor rotation of the projectile, which equates to poor stability, and, subsequently, poor accuracy and key-holing on the target.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2019
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  8. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    You know,@desmobob after writing my previous post, and thinking about your original post, I have to ask the question, what weight projectile, and, by extension, how long is the projectile, that you are using?

    As I recall, my 3 bander Enfield as a 1:60 twist. That's not a lot of rotation. If you're shooting a heavy minie ball, much of your problem may have been not enough rotation for the length of the projectile. I'm experiencing this with my 44 mag rifle, which has a 1:38 twist (carry over from the 44-40 BP days), and it won't stabilize 300 grn bullets very well, but 200 grn does okay.
     
  9. MEHavey

    MEHavey Member

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    The OP can't get real BP in his Georgia location ?
    (BTW, you'll be hard-pressed to blow out the thick(er) skirted Lyman OS with 60g of 2F or 3F/real BP)
     
  10. desmobob

    desmobob Member

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    My Enfield has a 1:78 twist, so it BARELY has enough twist to stabilize a Minie. It is historically accurate, and later versions of the Enfield had a faster twist rate.
    https://www.davide-pedersoli.com/sc...enfield-3-band-pattern-1853-rifle-musket.html

    I think the first edition of the Lyman blackpowder book had high-speed photos showing a Minie skirt over-expanding/blowing out due to a larger-than-necessary powder charge. Too small a charge and the skirt won't expand to grip the rifling and too large a charge will cause it to over-expand or split open. Both will obviously cause tumbling and inaccuracy.

    I tried using the Lyman 575-213 bulllets, both "old style" and new. The old style is 460gr. and shorter than the new version, which is 510 grains. With my rifle's slow twist rate, I'm guessing the shorter old style bullets are my best bet. Right now, all I have left are the new, longer and heavy ones, and I did manage to have success with them. I have a Minie ball mold that I haven't yet tried, but I can't remember off hand which one it is. I'll check when I'm in the basement.
     
  11. AlexanderA
    • Contributing Member

    AlexanderA Member

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    I have a Pedersoli 1861 Springfield repro. It's identical to my Euroarms 1861 from a few years ago. (Perhaps, even, the Pedersoli is not quite as well put together as the Euroarms.) Given that the tooling gets passed around from company to company within the Italian repro firearms industry, it's wise to assess each gun individually rather than going by the company's general reputation.

    As a side note, the best and most authentic 1861 replica was made by Miroku of Japan. The Euroarms/Pedersoli comes second, and the Armi Sport (Chiappa) a distant third. On the other hand, Chiappa makes an absolutely excellent 1842, rivaling even the originals.
     
  12. desmobob

    desmobob Member

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  13. Mike OTDP

    Mike OTDP Member

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    A few tips:
    1. Pure lead only. Minies are very, very sensitive to bullet hardness.
    2. Get real black powder if possible. 3F. 40-45 grains seems to be the sweet spot.
    3. Size bullets .001 below bore diameter. No more. The expansion on a Minie helps, but won't make up for an undersized bullet.
     
  14. TheOutlawKid

    TheOutlawKid Member

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    Them pedersoli enfields are really nice. Currently im working on getting me a pederaoli sharps. Mr. D.b. cooper....alaska doesnt have a primitive or muzzleloader season? Can you still hunt with a muzzleloader durring regular hunting season tho?
     
  15. desmobob

    desmobob Member

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    Thanks!

    1) I secured some pure lead to cast Minies with. I purchased some from RotoMetals and got some from a local roofer.
    2) I live in rural, upstate NY and I've never seen real BP in a shop. I'll be on the lookout, though!
    2) Check! My Pedersoli bullet sizer came with .576" and .575" inserts. My bore is .577" and I'm using the .576 sizer. The bullets I've purchased won't slide into the bore without sizing.

    Edit: I just examined my bullet sizer. The two sizing inserts are 14.64mm and 14.66mm, which equate to .577" and .576". I'm using the .577" insert.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2019
  16. TheOutlawKid

    TheOutlawKid Member

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    Mr.desmobob....it seems to me that you have developed the black powder addiction.....i have a feeling that like most of us ur going to end up making ur own black powder at some point. If u do...hit up the castboolits forum in the black powder section. They have a huge sticky on it.
     
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  17. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

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    Wow. That's a lot of work to get a minie gun to shoot. I never thought of the skirts blowing out, but then again, I have a Parker Hale mold and have always used FF (65 grains). Congratulations!
     
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  18. desmobob

    desmobob Member

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    I've had the addiction for years, but I'm one of those guys with too many hobbies. Interests come and go, but they always come back around at some point. I've had BP firearms since the 1980s. Every fall, when I get out the Hawken for hunting season, I get the bug. In the fall of 2016 I bought the Pedersoli 3-band Enfield. This fall, I bought the Uberti 1861 Navy. I have a feeling there will be a flintlock in my future in some upcoming fall...

    Thanks for the tip on the home-brew black powder.
     
  19. Mike OTDP

    Mike OTDP Member

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    The other piece of advice I'd give is going over to the North-South Skirmish Association's BB. They're the experts with the rifle-musket.
     
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  20. D.B. Cooper

    D.B. Cooper Member

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    Yeah. Has to be 50 cal or bigger. There is actually a muzzleloader hunter's ed course, although, I have no idea why. (Probably for use in other states, same as our CCW permit which isn't required.)
     
  21. desmobob

    desmobob Member

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    That's the first place I went after I first purchased the rifle. Nice bunch of folks over there....
     
  22. MEHavey

    MEHavey Member

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    Nicest, most helpful -- deplorables -- you'll ever encounter. :thumbup::rofl::D
     
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  23. dave951

    dave951 Member

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    Big +1 on that.

    I'm in the North South Skirmish Association and it never ceases to amaze me at the folks who just buy a musket and think any minie you buy is going to fit and shoot well. That's simply just not the case.

    The Cliff Notes version-
    Verify actual bore size by measuring!!!
    Size minie to .001 under that size.
    Use only real BP
    Use only good caps- CCI are garbage
    Use a natural lube, no petroleum products as they make fouling like concrete
    Seat minie with a firm push, no slapping and pounding with the ramrod.

    Get it right and here's what can happen- PH42gr.jpg
     
  24. dave951

    dave951 Member

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    If you're not a member, consider joining. It's the most fun you can have with a musket anywhere and we shoot artillery live too!!!
     
  25. dave951

    dave951 Member

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    Best source for pure lead other than Roto- local salvage yard. Look for "Xray room" lead. Xray rooms have lead shielding behind the drywall and it's about as pure as it comes short of Roto.

    In the NSSA- we have a number of "sutlers" who sell sizing dies all the way up to 584. I prefer the kind that have 7/8x14 threads which incidentally screw into most reloading presses.

    Real BP is around, it takes some looking to find it. Most of us get it from Back Creek Gunshop just outside our home range in Winchester, VA.

    Check out the NSSA, we are the best kept secret in shooting sports. Our range is the largest in the world controlled from a single tower (there are 2 supporting towers on the right and left ends of the line).

    Pretty good video-
     
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