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Flintlock Shooting Better


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#1 FC

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Posted 07 February 2017 - 12:03 PM

Remember me saying my Peter Berry flintlock had 12 inch groups, and it was driving me nuts? I bought .50 caliber minieballs from Track of the Wolf. They slid down pretty easily with a bit of coaxing. 5 inch group, so far. I'll take that. These are true Minieballs, not flat on the back. Now I have a spin to the bullet.

 

On the 1842 Springfield reproduction I'm not sure. Stupid Armi Italian thing has no breech plug! I broke the bolt for the rear sight trying to take out a breech plug it doesn't have. Amazing! How much trouble would they have had to go through to put in a breech plug? I thought it had one, but looking really closely I don't see a line at the breech. Now I get to tap a hole, that is, after ordering an M4-.70 tap set. The few minieballs, .69 caliber I shot were IMMENSE! They shot low. So I guess I have to up the powder load. I've read that you get leading if you overdo it, but they are about a foot low at 75 yards, compared to the balls. You can barely see any rifling, but it's there, vaguely. We'll see if they work. I took out the nipple, and will try trickling in powder, then blast out the ball and patches. I had to quadruple up patches because the bore is so big. That's how I got the rascal stuck. I unscrewed the cleaning rod, and, of course, the jag is still down there.



#2 Dr.Hess

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Posted 07 February 2017 - 12:50 PM

Now I know why I never got into black powder.



#3 brokengun

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Posted 07 February 2017 - 01:03 PM

Now I know why I never got into black powder.

 

I have neighbors that are into Black powder but I have never got the bug. That said its interesting that Black Powder is affected by bullet sellection just like everything else.

 

FC do you have an air compressor try blowing the patches out with air first. Maybe the ball will just roll out



#4 Dr.Hess

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Posted 07 February 2017 - 01:52 PM

From what I understand in talking with a guy I used to work with that was a Civil War reenacter, the Mini Ball was revolutionary when it came out.  Muskets were smooth bore because you could load a smooth bore bullet very fast, when compared to a rifled barrel that you had to push the ball down the rifling, forcing grooves in the ball.  That took a lot of time.  The smooth bore could be loaded in something like 30 seconds?  Anyway, the advantage was in faster shooting.  The disadvantage was in no rifling, BIG groups, reduced effective range.  The Mini Ball was more of what we would today consider bullet shaped, but the base was hollow with skirts.  Diameter was the ID size of the lands so they could be pushed down as fast as a smooth bore, but when fired, the skirt of the bullet expanded out to engage the grooves, imparting spin and giving better accuracy/range.



#5 FC

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Posted 07 February 2017 - 08:42 PM

Yup, that's what a minieball does. The BP guns are things of beauty though. I'll try the air thing. The CO2 blaster I have has a small needle, so that probably wouldn't work for this. One thing about flintlocks- a lot of things happen to get that bullet out of the rifle. The flint has to be sharp, it has to be snug in the jaws, then there's the odd spring-sort of sound of the flint hitting the frizzen, the fire in the pan, then the bullet going. Too easy to flinch, but you never really know if you are flinching because of the lag between pulling the trigger and the main powder igniting. It's click, flash, boom!



#6 karlunity

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Posted 11 February 2017 - 10:56 AM

I like BP. I have a couple of revolvers and a cap and ball CW reproduction a parent gave me as a gift : )

In fact the only problem with FL is that you have to drive a LONG way to an outdoor range.

Believe it or not Cali had more ranges. An ole guy i met said that it was the fault of the Yankees!

Seems 10 or 15 years ago they could go to the backyard and shoot so no one bothered to build ranges. Now He told me the yankees have all retired down here and the land is TOO expensive to waste on a range...

karl



#7 rdm1962

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Posted 12 February 2017 - 04:24 PM

I built a 54 cal. Hawken about 20 years ago. I get the best results with patched round ball and a mag load of pyrodex F. It's lots of fun. The 1 Doe I shot with it didn't take a single step after impact. Ralph

#8 FC

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Posted 17 February 2017 - 02:07 PM

Mine is just finicky. You read about how accurate the American flintlocks were, but I no longer believe it.






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