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Tingle drum

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by Flintshooter, Jul 31, 2020.

  1. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    Shortly after I bought it I found out that one of the two Tingle halfstock rifles I have has a problem. The drum isn’t tight enough. When I cleaned it after the first range session I could see black water coming from between the barrel and the drum. It wasn’t a lot, it probably wouldn’t have been noticeable it the breech hadn’t been in a bucket of clear water, but it was there. After cleaning and oiling the rifle I stuck it in the safe and pretty much forgot about it until last night.
    I was thinking about just getting a new drum not drilled for the nipple so everything could be snugged up tight so I removed the drum to check the threads. They proved to be 7/16/14 which seems a little coarse but the drum is original to the rifle (Bob Tingle put numbers on just about every part) so it isn’t something a shadetree gunsmith did after the rifle left Tingle’s hands.
    I have already decided that the fix will be done by a pro nearby who specializes in muzzleloaders. I am mainly posting this as kind of food for thought on how the problem came to be in the first place. My guess is that a previous owner felt it necessary to remove the drum on a regular basis. As it is, it doesn’t snug up against the barrel until the nipple is at the 12:00 position. I very much doubt that it left the shop in Shelbyville in that condition.
     
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  2. arcticap

    arcticap Member

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    Teflon tape a.k.a. thread seal tape should work.
    Many inline shooters wrap their breech plug threads with it to seal them from residue and to help make it easier to remove.
    There are different colors and thicknesses for different purposes. --->>> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thread_seal_tape#Types

    I don't know how much space is left to get it to snug up but maybe a shim could be installed.
    Perhaps Tingle left it that way so that it wouldn't gall and would be easier to remove.
    Is there any noticeable wear on the drum or on the barrel where it would make contact?
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2020
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  3. Frulk

    Frulk Member

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    I didn’t know the drums on Tingles could be backed out. Thought they were tack welded in place. Will have to go out and look at mine for SA.

    Yup...appears to be set up to have a wrench put on it:

    JVV60Bl.jpg

    hgJKZQS.jpg
     
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  4. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    Most drums can be backed out, an exception being some CVA rifles. And even they CAN be backed out, it just isn’t a good idea because they are screwed into the breechplug itself.
     
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  5. arcticap

    arcticap Member

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    There's two different types of drums, those that are already drilled & tapped for a nipple and those that aren't.
    Those that are already D&T require some adjustment to get them to snug up to the satisfaction of the builder.
    I suppose that Tingle machined his own drums?

    What's nice about Teflon tape is that it's temporary and can be undone if needed.
    And it's a very cheap standard fix that's used in industry.
    Once the threads are loose, they're loose.

    An O-ring could be a shim or would that be way too thick?
     
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  6. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    Under most circumstances there is NO, ZERO, reason to remove a drum. As such, there is no reason to install it loose so it’s easier to remove.
    Whoever the previous owner was tried the thread tape route, as I found out when I removed the drum last night. The removal by the way was accomplished while sitting in an office chair with a wrench but without a vise. That’s way too loose.
    In order to make it tight and have the nipple line up the drum will have to make almost one complete turn. The only way to accomplish this is by careful removal of metal on the shoulder of the drum. That is if the existing drum is usable. There is a possibility that a new drum with slightly oversized threads will have to be made.
    I did consider a shim, and it’s a trick I’ve seen on more than one rifle, but I would rather just have a properly installed drum.
    Flintlocks are so much simpler.
     
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  7. Frulk

    Frulk Member

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    Flint...couple of pics of those rifles would be nice. Not a lot of Tingles show up around here or anywhere else for that matter.
     
  8. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    Try to do a group photo later. I have two of the halfstock rifles and one of the target pistols.
    The rifle I’ve had the longest I’ve owned twice. Bought it around 94 or 95, never got around to shooting it, and sold it after a devastating burglary took me out of the shooting game for almost ten years. When the guy I sold it to passed away I went to the estate auction and bought it back. He had another Tingle rifle that was left handed (I’ve seen two counting that one) and two of the single shot pistols, one of which was still in the box it was shipped in.
    Shelbyville is only two counties away so in their day Tingle guns were fairly common around here.
     
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  9. arcticap

    arcticap Member

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    The drum probably wouldn't have ever leaked if it weren't removed, or perhaps it did leak but it wasn't a concern at the time because it was built to be sold.
    Whatever the case.
    The fact that the nipple "doesn't line up" doesn't have a reason that can be blamed on the original owner using Telflon tape unless there is some kind of visible wear or a fitment problem besides the fact that it's not lining up snug.
    Removing a drum doesn't necessarily cause it to not line up snug ever again to a such a significant extent.
    That's why I asked if there was any visible wear where the drum contacts the barrel.

    It's hard to understand why tape won't seal it.
    Perhaps more tape or a thicker tape needs to be used along with some grease.
    Guys use several different colors of Teflon tape on factory breech plugs which are intended to be removed over and over again.
    Of course they are usxually greased with anti-seize even when tape is used.
    I understand that you want a new drum and a perfect fit.
    But perhaps the original drum was never a perfect fit to begin with.
    That would at least seem to be a possibility in theory.
    You know the old saying that human beings aren't perfect, maybe even Mr. Tingle.
    Or maybe the threads were cut into softer steel than the drum.
     
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  10. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    I doubt the drum leaked when it was new. But if it was removed every time the gun was cleaned the threads would have gotten loose over a period of time. It happens, that’s why they make oversized nipples.
    I’m not a machinist so I don’t know what acceptable tolerances are. The crest of the threads that screw into the barrel are .003 under 7/16.
    Like I said in the original post, the purpose of the thread is to give people who think that it might be necessary to remove drums for any reason than no other choice pause to reflect.
    Ultimately it will be up to the full time specializing in muzzleloaders gunsmith I take the rifle to to decide on the best permanent fix.
    It isn’t just a matter of stopping leakage of the drum threads and the barrel. It’s making as sure as possible that the drum doesn’t embed itself in a shooter to my right some day. And Teflon tape won’t do the job.
     
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  11. Frulk

    Frulk Member

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    Hopefully the Smith will be able to salvage the original drum as I noted when taking the pic of mine it was stamp numbered to match the number on the barrel. Interesting that Tingle would go to that level of detail.
     
  12. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    My hope as well.
    I haven’t had the lock out of either of mine for a while but if I remember correctly even the individual parts on the lock have the same numbers as the rest of the rifle
    This particular rifle has a rear sight that was installed kind of sloppy by a previous owner. A brand new drum would just be an obvious repair that is part of the rifle’s history.
    This would be the second cap gun I’ve owned that needed a new drum. The other was an original chunk gun that had a scary loose drum. It also had thick enough barrel walls that making a new drum was a little easier.
     
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  13. arcticap

    arcticap Member

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    I understand, you make it sound worse that I thought.
    Maybe unrelated, but for some reason it reminds me of the heli-coil recall that Greem Mountain barrels had at one time.
    GM used heli-coils to repair nipple threads and then recalled the barrels to install new breech plugs because folks complained about the use of heli-coils.

    GM has also had other recalls from when the factory installed nipples didn't match the factory threads, possibly damaging them. --->>> https://www.muzzleloadingforum.com/threads/green-mt-barrel-recall.95571/

    Maybe your threads were somehow damaged by the incorrect removal or re-insertion of the drum by the previous owner.
    Whatever happened, I'm sorry to hear about the damage.
     
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  14. Bfh_auto

    Bfh_auto Member

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    The easiest fix other than a couple wraps of yellow Teflon would be solder. If a person is careful with the flux application it isn't visible.
     
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  15. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    That would be the last thing I’d do.
    For about five years I was a Maintenance Director at a large nursing home that included a 12 unit senior apartment unit. One day it became neccessary to do some kind of fix on a shower mixer in one of the apartments. That was when I discovered that all of the threaded water line connections were soldered in place instead of using thread compound or Teflon tape. The same contractor saved a little money by gluing PVC 90s together for sink traps instead of using regular traps that could be taken apart to clear clogs. The names I called the original installers everytime I had to work in that building should have resulted in a lightning strike.
     
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  16. Bfh_auto

    Bfh_auto Member

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    Solder is easily reversed with a little heat.
    I learned use heat to weaken pipe dope, rust, and solder before unthreading things.
    90s for scent traps is uncalled for.
     
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  17. SC45-70

    SC45-70 Member

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    If the drum is fit the same way as the one pictured here, there is a chance that shooting the gun has worn the threads on the drum or barrel or both.

    The drum is supposed to fit tight in the recess in the lock plate to support it!

    The constant "hammering" caused by the hammer on the unsupported drum can cause the drum to snap off the barrel in time.

    If the gun has a gap between the drum and the lock plate you will have to install an oversize drum and fit it to the lock plate or weld up the recess in the lock plate and re fit it to the drum.

    SC45-70
     
  18. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    I agree with what you say about the drum/lockplate fit, but to one degree or another that’s the way all of them were made.
     
  19. The Old Redneck

    The Old Redneck Member

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    May not be something you want to use, but a crush washer can be easy to make from lead or brass. I refer brass, and adjust thickness so it reaches desired location when tight.
     
  20. SC45-70

    SC45-70 Member

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    Just because they were all made that way doesn't mean that they are done right!

    SC45-70
     
  21. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    Once again, agree, but the newest Tingle out there is probably 77 or earlier because Bob died in January of 78. They have shot tons of round balls and won lots of matches. If the lack of support under the drum was a major problem the rifles wouldn’t still be in use. The smith who has mine now makes high end off hand rifles, but even he has a Tingle that he says he shoots often. The same problem exists in a lot, if not most, of the old originals that were converted to percussion from flint.
    TC cut a slot in the bolster so it can fit over a lockplate without having to fit the bolster to a cutout in the top of the lockplate. This leaves about 1/16 of an inch of steel where pressures are the highest. Of the two bad ways of approaching the same problem, I prefer Tingle’s.
     
  22. SC45-70

    SC45-70 Member

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    I stand by my statement!
    I've been doing machine work for 30+ years and know for a fact that threaded "fixtures" can not survive side impact shock stresses without failing.
    They may last decades or more but they will eventually fail.
    I'm sure Tingle rifles are fine rifles that shoot great but fact is, if there is a gap between the drum and the lockplate it is a poor design that has the potential to fail.

    You asked for a reason that your drum is loose and I gave you a possible reason.

    SC45-70
     
  23. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    Actually, I didn’t ask for a reason. No matter how correct you may be, IN THIS PARTICULAR CASE, I believe the problem is/was caused by the drum being removed on a regular or semi-regular basis for cleaning. Tightening and loosening things will wear the threads out as well and probably faster.
    I have been in the muzzleloading game for a little over a half-century. One of the things I learned very early is that nipple seats will eventually become worn enough from removing and replacing nipples that a .250x28
    nipple will become loose and need to be replaced with a .255x28. It is an unavoidable situation with a nipple, but it is very avoidable with a drum. Simply leave it there and do not remove it unless it is absolutely neccessary.
     
  24. SC45-70

    SC45-70 Member

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    Your words not mine

    SC45-70
     
  25. Flintshooter

    Flintshooter Member

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    K
    There is a bit of difference between saying “ I am mainly posting this as kind of food for thought on how the problem came to be in the first place.” and saying “ does anybody have any ideas how the drum got that way?” The rest of that paragraph,which you left off, is “My guess is that a previous owner felt it necessary to remove the drum on a regular basis.”
    Perhaps my phrasing could have been better, but the food for thought was not “why did this happen” but instead, “don’t remove the drum from a percussion rifle unless you absolutely have to.
     
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