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Traditional Rifles

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by AnthonyC., Jun 13, 2008.

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  1. AnthonyC.

    AnthonyC. Member

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    I have been looking around at different styles of black powder and like the Hawken, and those types of flint lock or cap rifles. What brands would you trust to make a nice BP rifle? I know T/C makes a hawken and Tradition's makes one aswell? What other brands are there that I should be looking at?

    Any other rifles besides the hawken that I should look at? Please no inline rifles, I want a traditional rifle.

    Thanks in advance....
     
  2. Omnivore

    Omnivore Member

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  3. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    I'm pretty new to BP but I've noticed Pedersoli has stronger parts and seems to be better put together. The very best would likely be a custom shop, though. There are some AMAZINGLY good custom smoke pole makers here and in Canada, running in price from a high end factory job to as much as a small house.
     
  4. scrat

    scrat Member

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    Thats the problem. The prices go way way up. Most of the kits some of the guys have build here look very good though. im thinking of going that way myself.
     
  5. RoaringBull

    RoaringBull Member

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    IMO, I would steer clear of the Traditions. My son has one and its been a might too troublesome for us. I shoot a Pedersoli Kentucky flinter that I love. Lyman also makes a good rifle, though I'm not sure that they make a Hawken. Try these sights, they have a lot of variety.

    Dixie Gun Works:
    http://www.dixiegunworks.com/default.php?cPath=22_92

    The Possible Shop
    http://www.possibleshop.com/

    Thunder Ridge
    http://www.thunder-ridge.com/

    There are also a few really good forums that deal exclusively with traditional black powder that I can give you on a PM. I'm not sure of the rules for posting other forums. Good luck
     
  6. Seafarer12

    Seafarer12 Member

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    I would buy a cheap Cabelas hawken, Made by the same people that make the Lymans, just a few hundred less. I have one in a 50 and a custom flinter in 45. To answer the op's question a traditional hawken will be a caplock.
     
  7. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

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    If you're just starting, try a Lyman Great Plains rifle kit. Now, if you want a longrifle, there are many great kits out there but I'm biased toward Marsh Jim (Jim Chambers of Siler Locks). While it's not relevant, the sweet feminine voice you'll hear on the phone is Marsh Jim's daughter, Barbie.
     
  8. ArmedBear

    ArmedBear Member

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    I have a T/C Hawken I built from a kit over 25 years ago. I stripped the barrel and browned it. Couldn't stand the blue barrel.:)

    That said, it IS a modern muzzleloader. It pre-dated the in-lines, but it has modern iron sights, dimensions that are not traditional, etc. Nothing wrong with that, and it's good quality without a doubt, but if you want some semblance of authenticity for the experience of it, the Lyman Great Plains is more like it. Cabela's sells some Pedersoli long rifles, lacking in adornment but not quality, for reasonable prices, too.
     
  9. arcticap

    arcticap Member

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    I wouldn't be too critical about Traditions percussion rifles. They are made by Ardesa, a very reputable long time Spanish maker. They make some very pricey items for sale in Europe that just aren't imported into the U.S. on a massive scale.
    Even their economy models are reliable, accurate and dependable guns that utilize a drum with a clean out screw rather than a patent breech. Each design has its advantages and disadvantages. Some of their models have been touted for having excellent accuracy. Maybe their flintlocks aren't considered to be the best, but they do usually function and at an affordable price.
    Many decades of satisfied customers will attest about how well their Traditions guns shoot, even in competition. The fact that they have outlasted CVA in the sidelock gun business should make that evident.
    They have the new Mountain & Frontier rifles in addition to their Kentucky and Pennsylvania rifles.
    As good as Lymans do shoot, their rifles are designed so that they can't be capped on half-cock because the hammer's just too low. That means that the hammer has to be manually de-cocked into the half-cock notch after it's capped. That's a sore spot in their design, probably because they tried to make an almost exact copy of the TC lock without having to actually design it from scratch themselves. :neener:
     
  10. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Cruising gunbroker is one way to find quality for a good price. Sometimes someone will put up their own iron for sale. I've got a bead on one myself over there now.
     
  11. RoaringBull

    RoaringBull Member

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    I like Traditions quality overall, I just think that maybe we got one made on a Friday or Monday. We are working with the company to get things straightened out. They are very customer friendly. I should have checked myself about them in the previous post.
     
  12. mykeal

    mykeal Member

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    For significantly more money.
    The Great Plains Rifle is a Hawken design. Lyman chose not to apply the name because, although it's closer to a real Hawken than others who do use the name (T/C, for instance) it's not an exact replica.
    Cabela's basic Hawken is $340; the Lyman Great Plains complete finished rifle is $410 at Midsouth Shooter's Supply. Not quite 'a few hundred less'.
    Weren't the T/C Hawken and Lyman Great Plains designed by the same person?
     
  13. AnthonyC.

    AnthonyC. Member

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    Hey RoaringBull, that would be great if you could pm me those forums.

    I really like the Traditions Kentucky rifle....I wish somplace around here would sell them so I could handle one....

    The closest gun store dosent sell any muzzleloaders, and the next closest store that sells muzzleloaders is GanderMtn but is is 1 hour away.:uhoh:
     
  14. RoaringBull

    RoaringBull Member

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  15. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Not if you cruise the used market.
     
  16. rdoggsilva

    rdoggsilva Member

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    I have the Lyman Great Plains Rifle in 54 caliber. I really like it and have harvested both mule deer and 2 elk with it. It is a little heavy at around 10lbs, the only problem I have with it.
     
  17. Rikeman

    Rikeman Member

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    I have a Traditions 54ca Hawken Woodsman and I love it! Excellent price!
     
  18. DonP

    DonP Member

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    FWIW, I picked up my first BP rifle week before last at a Bass Pro Shop of all places!

    It's a Traditions Kentucky Rifle kit, .50 cal. percussion, for only $199. The pieces look pretty well made, the wood is good, nicely straight grained and the brass is actually pretty nicely polished to start with.

    The box was on the bottom shelf and all dusty and the price tag was old but still valid. Lord knows how long it had been sitting around there. All the display guns were modern in-lines and like you, I wanted a traditional looking side lock. I had to spot the box myself and find a salesperson to pull it out for me.

    It turned out they had four or five different tradional looking gun kits there on the bottom shelf and none of the gun department staff knew they were down there. Too busy selling Glocks I guess?

    I'm sure I'll have to do some serious fitting and finishing work, but at that price, I couldn't pass it up as a rainy day project.

    The Traditions instructions leave a whole lot to be desired, in terms of detail and no illustrations. So if you choose a kit you better have some woodworking experience and a touch for the mechanical. But there are plenty of online and published guides to assembling a muzzleloader from a kit or even from scratch building.

    I'm thinking of a nice darker walnut stain and oil for the stock and the Birchwood-Casey cold blue kit for the barrel. That ought to set off the polished brass pretty nicely.
     
  19. BigG

    BigG Member

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    I would try http://www.Middlesexvillagetrading.com I haven't bought anything because I have too many guns right now but they are on the list for a nice reproduction muzzle loader. The guy running it really sounds knowledgeable and decent.
     
  20. RoaringBull

    RoaringBull Member

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  21. AnthonyC.

    AnthonyC. Member

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    So how much do these guns recoil? I have never shot a BP rifle before but I have heard that it is more of a push than a sharp kick.....am I right? What is the recoil differance between a traditional rifle and an in-line rifle?

    O and thanks for all of the answers and links!
     
  22. RoaringBull

    RoaringBull Member

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    recoil depends on the amountof powder you use as well as the type of projectile. The recoil is more of a push than a kick. I don't know the difference in the recoil from a traditional and an in-line because I have never used an in-line. I like my locks to hang off the side!!
     
  23. arcticap

    arcticap Member

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    The ability to control the amount of recoil is what's really great about shooting muzzle loaders. You can load as much or as little powder as you feel comfortable with.
    My oldest son started muzzle loading when he was about 10 or so with a .50 caliber carbine. We loaded up about 30 grains of Pistol (fffg) powder for shooting at 25 yards which proved to be the perfect amount of recoil for a youngster. Then we would load about 40 grains of powder for 50 yard shooting. It was accurate and just enough recoil for him to feel the power without any negatives at all.
    I tend to shoot 50 grains of powder at 50 yards out of a light 6 lb. rifle, which are target loads with very moderate recoil.
    If I want to shoot farther, I can load up appropriately for that distance and still not wince in pain whatsoever, and I consider myself recoil shy.
    High velocity hunting loads with heavier bullets will produce more recoil, and depending on the style of the buttplate or if shooting off of a bench, it can be felt. The amount of felt recoil depends on the bullet weight, powder charge, amount of shoulder padding worn as clothing or the buttplate style, weight of the gun and the toughness of the individual's shoulder.
    Some stout loads will be felt out of a lighter carbine but they generally won't hurt much if at all.
    I've found that shooting with 777 powder does produce not only higher velocity but a noticiably sharper kick as well. That's why I use it more in the smaller calibers rather than in a deer hunting load. It could be hurtful, but not if a jacket was being worn during the northern winter deer hunting season. But it could affect the amount of muzzle rise and therefore off hand shooting accuracy.
    The same goes with shooting bullets that weigh over ~250 grains with 90 or 100 grains of powder out of a .50 caliber carbine, for me anyway. At some point the heavier bullets start to produce more felt recoil than is desired, and that's determined by each individual shooter.
    I don't like shooting 300 grain bullets but others can shoot 400+ grain bullets without any felt recoil complaints. So, every person has a different threshold regarding the amount of felt recoil that they desire.
    More recoil is sometimes enjoyable for a few shots, but for some, too much recoil for too many shots becomes not pleasurable.
    Round balls generally don't produce too much felt recoil on the shoulder except sometimes with 100 grains as mentioned above. But it certainly wouldn't bruise or hurt very much, although it could be "felt".
    Nonetheless, many people do like to shoot maximum round ball loads anyway just because it is more tolerable than with the high power centerfire guns. :)
     
  24. AnthonyC.

    AnthonyC. Member

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    Thanks guys, I have always wondered what the smallest load you can shoot in a muzzleloader without getting the round stuck in the barrel. Also what kind of powder do you guys shoot in your guns? Is it differant for an in-line?
     
  25. BigG

    BigG Member

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    I don't know how you down load them. My side hammers have fixed sights that work pretty much with one and only one load. there is not much range of adjustment.

    Unless you are talking about an in-line with a scope?

    The 50 and 54 caliber RBs work with about 70 grains of powder very close to point of aim. If I lower the amount the ball strikes lower.
     
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