The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The North Corral > Black Powder and Cowboy Action Shooting

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old November 19, 2005, 02:47 PM   #1
Low Key
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 4, 2005
Location: In the woods of TN
Posts: 298
Black Powder Ramblings

A man wakes up at 5am and rolls out of a warm bed. It’s chilly in the house so he pulls his clothes on to go out to the wood pile to bring in some firewood. Over his clothes he puts on his gun belt, and in his holster goes the 1858 new model army revolver.
The dog wakes up as he walks out the door towards the wood pile. She runs circles around him, jumping up and down and wagging her tail, she just happy to be anywhere, dogs are like that. She’s no help with the wood but she gets tickled on the ears anyway.
Everything is quiet outside the house and the air is cold. A few minutes later, the dog is asleep again, a fire is roaring in the fire place and the man sits in front of the fire with a cup of hot coffee in hand and the 58 Remington pistol on the table beside him.
He looks at the pistol and wonders how many men before him have gone through the same routine before daylight in the morning. He wonders how many men might have had to draw their 58 in defense of life and family while they were just going out to bring in some wood to warm the house on a cold morning. Stray thoughts in front of the fire early in the morning.
Are you thinking this is a story from the 1860’s? Well it isn’t, the man is me and this is how I started my day today. This is a well worn routine from times past that thousands of people have been through. Just because we have central heat and air is no reason not to burn a fire in the morning if you like that sort of thing. But in this age of newer and better and faster, the old routines get left by the wayside.
It’s the same with guns. Everybody wants the newest auto loader that holds 25 rounds in the mag plus one in the pipe and the frame is some sort of graphite composite that will still be around 500 years from now. Everyone wants the newest big bang, break my wrist, yikes that made be sh** my pants load that came out just last week. And that’s fine, it’s the way things work.
But there’s a certain charm in the old BP revolver. Instead of spray and pray, you take aim and make the shot count. The old BP revolver reminds us of times past and a different way of doing things. There are some of us out there that like to look back at the past when men acted like men. Don’t get me wrong I like my modern conveniences, but there’s nothing wrong with knowing how to heat with real wood or how to hunt and fish. There’s nothing wrong with knowing how to do things the old fashioned way…..if you want to.
__________________
Low Key is offline  
Old November 19, 2005, 03:05 PM   #2
Remington kid
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 15, 2005
Location: South Central West Virginia
Posts: 612
Low Key , Very nicely said and you should be a writer. I felt like I was having coffee with you this morning and sitting there in front of the fire with you and your dog. Guess it's because I have been there before and still love getting up early before the phone or the TV comes on with all the bad news of the day. Just watch the sun come up and enjoy the piece and quiet the way it should be and the way it was back then.
Every time I take my .40 in the woods and walk these mountains I have to wonder how many solders or settlers did the same thing long before me. Before my wife and I moved to this part of WV we lived up by the Ohio river in a two story hand hewed log house that was built in 1868. I could and did burn 4' logs in that fire place and we cooked on it many times . It had an iron post that would swing out to hang a cast iron pot on to cook stew in over the fire. Made all kinds of fixens on it. I really miss that place.
Thanks again for sharing your thoughts.
Remington kid is offline  
Old November 19, 2005, 03:26 PM   #3
Low Key
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 4, 2005
Location: In the woods of TN
Posts: 298
Thanks Mike! That sounds like a great place you used to have and I know you like the place you have now.
If you have never read "A Sand County Almanac" by Aldo Leopold I highly recommend it. Now there is a writer, he could paint a picture with words that would make you feel just like you were sitting in a marsh beside him with a shotgun across your lap waiting for the ducks to fly in.

I'm an early bird and like to get up before the sun on the weekends when I have time to just sit and think, watch the sun rise, and listen to the world wake up around me. I get nostalgic and wonder about things that I don't have time to think about through the week. Mostly life moves at too fast a pace, and I have to slow down and enjoy it sometimes.

I know all you guys have stories to tell. What do you think about early in the morning? What do you miss from times past? Pull up a chair and ramble on with the rest of us....
__________________

Last edited by Low Key; November 19, 2005 at 04:16 PM.
Low Key is offline  
Old November 19, 2005, 06:03 PM   #4
Old Dragoon
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 31, 2005
Location: The Republic of Californi
Posts: 581
OK! Now You've Done It!

That and a couple other happenings today. I was just fine (almost) until I read these.
I went to shoot my '58 for the first time today. They didn't want me to shoot BP until I was alone on the indoor range. I commenced to fire my 44 Rem. Colts. i
It appears to shoot a might high and to the left at their max range of 15 Yards. The left thing may be me.
Well I learned a lot today. the Unique 5 Grns is too much powder as I peppered the target with the residueand unspent powder. I shot 50 Rds and my best group sitting elbows on my breifcase/rest were about 3" at 15 yards. I haven't shot for a couple years so I mainly worked on groups. Luckily all shots were on the paper.

The two Police Officers were intrigued with "that Great Old Gun"? I told thme the truth. They really liked it then. Anyway I was fine and I need to work a load up in BP. I think I'll pull the remaining 50 with the Unigue and try BP. When the officers left I had a full cylinder to unload of 40 grns. BP. I lubed with SPG took my rest and shot all six......Thats 1 Thing.

I hadn't shot a BP weapon in about 30 years and while the conversion is nice and it will shoot in as soon as it teaches me where and how to hold,

This is the 2nd thing.
The BP was a serious HOOT!. This thing shoots point of aim (almost)(bull resting on the front sight) with 40 grn.s BP. and a better group and in the black too.
That the 3rd thing. I'm afraid I'm hooked all over again. HOLLY Shoot! Batman What a rush to cut loose with that loading. I can't wait to go back during the weedays so i can work on where it shoots with BP.

Then I come home to read these posts. Look out Mike I may have to come and camp out in your shed.

I now think I'll just antique the new '58 coming Monday or Tuesday. and shoot it with 40 grns. Elephant 2Fg. I had forgotten what a rush booming away with a Large Caliber BP handgun.

My 1997 Elephant Black Powder is good to go.
When I was done I went upstairs into the shop and the pistol was the talk of the shop. They don't sell Rem. Caps at all so I bought # 10 CCI the #11 I have shot flawlessly for 6 shots but I had to pinch them.
Boy am I jazzed about this gun now. Now out to find my bullet puller. I had 27 BP cartridges (44 Rem Mag rim trimmed, with 37 grns BP, but I forgot i had them until i was on my way home.
The officers were impressed how easily the pistol changes from/to BP/cartridge.

Thanks for all the tips I have gotten on this site in the last few weeks I have done nearly all of them to this rig and ...Color Me Happy as a pig in the mudhole.
Old Dragoon is offline  
Old November 20, 2005, 01:56 AM   #5
MPP1423
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 10, 2005
Location: GOODLETTSVILLE,TN
Posts: 298
low key,as mike said,well said! that sounds like my kinda thing.im from the counrty and i know no other way.although my crazy hours put me getting home at 2am and in bed by 5am i still try to find the peace of morning on my fridays like tonight.but,guess what ,i have an extra job at 8am-4pm tomorrow.gotta love it.lol.when i was growing up a fire place and wood burning stove is all we had to heat and that was just the way it was.my dad would buy a load of logs in the sping time and when i got home from school everyday i had to cut and split wood,and i dont mean with a splitter!! all by hand and never complained about it mainly cause if i did my dad would kick my ass.lol.things are way too fast now days! hell sometimes i dont know if im coming or going.and low key,you are so damn right about the high cap guns today! you should see some of the guys at work shoot! my goosh,they suck! they need all 16 rounds just to hit once!lol.i never minded the 6 shooters and i love my 58's!

mike,sounds like you had a very nice pad! i'd love to have a log home and maybe someday i will but i just dont have the cash right now.
MPP1423 is offline  
Old November 20, 2005, 07:31 AM   #6
Low Key
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 4, 2005
Location: In the woods of TN
Posts: 298
When I was growing up we had a wood stove upstairs in the living room and down in the basement we had a coal stove. After school every evening, my brothers and I were responsible for bringing in coal for the night and next day and stacking a small pile of wood on the back porch for the wood burner.
That was before I was big enough to swing an axe. When I got strong enough to actually split a piece of wood, that became my job in addition to whacking the large chunks of coal into manageable pieces. I didn't so much mind the wood splitting, a good swing, a solid whack, and two pieces of wood fall where there was only one before! But cracking up the coal was another story, you had to chip at it rather than take a big swing and the little pieces would fly up in your eyes and down your coat collar. We didn't know about safety glasses back then, so there was more than one occasion where dad had to wash coal dust out of my eyes for me.

I still don't mind splitting wood. It's good exercise, and I remember working up the wood pile as a kid with my dad watching me out the window and pretending he wasn't watching.

Dragoon, I mostly shoot in my own back yard but sometimes I go to the local range with a couple of buddies. I like to take my 58 with me for a hoot and I wear my holster rig while at the range. I've found that most people are seriously curious about BP pistols, especially if they have never been around them before. I've heard more than once, "What the hell is that you are shooting?!" LOL! Most people around here know about the BP rifles, but cap n ball pistols are another story. Some people will come out and ask questions and others will kind of stare at your rig out of the corner of their eye while trying to look like they're not staring at you!
__________________
Low Key is offline  
Old November 20, 2005, 04:11 PM   #7
Dwight55
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 18, 2004
Location: Central Ohio
Posts: 2,563
Good story, Low Key, . . . mine doesn't have the dog (he got into some anti freeze and of course that finished him), . . . and my walk to the outdoors has one of them new fangled 1911 pistols, . . . plus I had to go down and let the chickens out too, up until about a month ago.

But all in all, . . . it is great to be able to fire up the old wood stove, . . . sit and listen to it crackle, . . . get a whiff of hickory or oak smoke, . . . and sometimes I just turn all the lights off and sit and enjoy.

May God bless,
Dwight
__________________
www.dwightsgunleather.com
If you can breathe, . . . thank God!
If you can read, . . . thank a teacher!
If you are reading this in English, . . . thank a Veteran!
Dwight55 is offline  
Old November 20, 2005, 09:30 PM   #8
Ken O
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 2, 2005
Location: Half way between Grayling and Cadillac, Michigan
Posts: 353
I still heat with wood, and due to windstorms the last couple years, I have enough wood cut right now for about five years (I am surrounded by state forest). I made a cart that hold a few days worth that I wheel in next to the stove, so I dont have to go out at night to get it, which is good, we had a foot of snow the other day. I do have all the other ammenities now, even electricity (got to have the computer). I did keep quite a few gas lights hooked up which come in handy because I loose electricity quite often. I apprecaite the quiet, I guess I'm a hermit. I made up a website, the winter pages are my favorite: Home
Ken O is offline  
Old November 21, 2005, 02:29 AM   #9
gmatov
Junior member
 
Join Date: September 20, 2005
Posts: 346
As a 5 or 6 or 10 year old, I never had to strap on a pistol to walk the 70 feet to the coal shanty to get the coal for the morning fire.

'Course I lived in a village. Heated with coal and wood till 1962, Heatrola in the dining room, in the cellar, and a Kalamazoo in the kitchen.

Hadda take a kettle of hot water to thaw the old pump for the morning water, too. Lucky it was only 40 foot deep. My old man dug it by hand. He'da been 121 years old this year.

Brag like we might, we ain't no way near as tough as our predecessors were. To him, it had to be done. To me, where can I get a backhoe operator, or a well driller?

My kids have spent about 10 grand for the digger they have had over the last couple months.

Cheers,

George
gmatov is offline  
Old November 21, 2005, 09:10 AM   #10
Old Dragoon
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 31, 2005
Location: The Republic of Californi
Posts: 581
I remember when we moved to town in Indiana from a farm in Ohio in 1950. We bought my Granpa's house. At the time and for a couple years, we had a coal/wood shed right beside the old two holer. I can remember walking out to the two holer in the mornings on a crisp autumn day. Smelling the wood and coal smoke and dreading the cold seat that awaited. My chore was to bring in a bucket of coal. we had a Warm Morning in the living room and a coal/wood Cook stove in the kitchen. Don't remember the name but it was Green and White. My dad built us an indoor bathroom and put in a gas heater and upgraded the cook stove and heating stove to gas the first year. We had no basement and no foundation, the foundation was built the second year. They jacked the whole house up about 4 feet, cut holes in the floor near the supports and dug the footer and set us on 3 blocks high foundation. I remember one night a stray cat came in one of the holes in the floor.
Boy do I remember and miss those crisp mornings of yesteryear.
Also while we're remembering, how about the smell of a hardwood forest in the spring, the hickory and such. being away from it i miss the heck out that smell.

I yearn for the morning that I can strap on the '58 and stroll to the woodpile with my dog.

Maybe I can talk my nephew's gramps into renting me their WV Cabin...LOL
I gotta find out where it is in WV.
Old Dragoon is offline  
Old November 21, 2005, 10:08 AM   #11
Low Key
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 4, 2005
Location: In the woods of TN
Posts: 298
Tough men...

The men and women of 100 years ago and longer were tougher than we modern folk ever thought about being. What they did as a matter of routine everyday survival would cause us modern wimps to moan and groan and gripe till it was finished. I'd wager that if most modern people were left with the technology of 150 years ago, they wouldn't survive a week. Wood heat, water well, grow most of your own food and cook it too, homemade biscuits, kill your own pig or cow, do your own laundry by hand on a wash board (if you're lucky enough to have one) or beat it on a rock by the creek. Most of us don't know what that's like. Sure we like to camp out for a few days and do it the old fashioned way, but thats never for an extended period of time. Would we willingly go back to doing it that way all the time? Probably not.

I like the electric coffee pot and central heat and air, I like the pump that sends the water up out of the well and I don't have to haul the bucket up and down. But I also like to use the fireplace, and grow my own tomatos, I like knowing how to take and clean game, and I like knowing that if I had to I could get by without the modern conveniences.

I like the freedom we have out here in TN. I can strap on my 58 and walk my 10 acres of woods whenever I want, shoot pine cones if I take a notion to do so and the sherriff doesn't show up asking what I'm doing shooting a gun. Dragoon, I hope you get to leave CA behind and move out east where we still have most of the freedoms that our veterans have fought and died for.

Bring your dog...there's plenty of room.
__________________
Low Key is offline  
Old November 21, 2005, 12:26 PM   #12
Cap n ball
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 17, 2000
Posts: 247
My Grandpa owned about 40 acres of strip pit land. Not farmable at all but loaded with game of all sorts. That was where my cousin and I went to hunt and fish. The biggest pit is a good half a mile long, 100 yards wide and around 350 ft deep. Clear cold water. He had it stocked with lake trout as well as blue gill and bass. Pulled some huge fish out of there. My Grandpa left the acerage to my cousin and he left it to me when he didn't come back from Vietnam. I fish and hunt there every chance I get. The only other person that I allow to hunt or fish on the place is Ben the farmer next door who takes care of the fences and cuts the brush around the gates. Hes about my age, (56) and has a pretty wife Annie. Their kids are all gone to the city to live. Ben always looks like hes just heard a good joke and he usually has a couple of hounds snuffling around his feet. A good guy. Likes to rib me by calling me 'city boy' even though he knows I grew up not more than three miles from his house.

Two years ago in August I decided to have a day of fishing so I drove down there from Kansas City where I live. I thought that rather than use the pontoon boat I'd just flip my old aluminum boat over and use it. When I did the rabbits and mice scattered everywhere. Slid the boat down the bank put my gear in and shipped a couple of oars in. The morning fog was just lifting off the water. I grabbed my terrier dog 'Pete' and put him in then got in myself and began to row to a spot that I knew was the hangout of a certain old female bass I nicknamed 'Suzi'. I've caught her a dozen times and can tell her by the scars and marks on her head. She always fights like hell and I always let her go. Half way there Pete starts barking like crazy. Up under the bow I see an old gunny sack that I must have stuck there years ago and its moving. A huge snake slides out from there and before I even think about what I'm doing I pull my 1858 out and while I'm trying to hold Pete back by his collar I unload it at the snake. Completely missing it but putting six holes in the bottom of my boat. I decide to abandon ship and along with Pete I jump and swim to the bow and grab onto the tow rope and start swimming back to shore. The water is freezing cold in those pits even in Summer. The snake has the same idea and I spot it swiming about twenty feet away from me in the same general direction. My boat is rapidly getting heavy but with extra effort I make it to shore and pull it up far enough so that it won't go to the bottom along with my stuff. Then I hear whistling and laughter and theres Ben, red faced almost bent double laughing so hard. He says, "You need to practice more at the range city boy! Not that it would make any difference to your boat even if you'ld hit the snake." and then he says, "You might want to toss that dog of yours back in for a bath." I see Pete has discovered the delights of rolling in a fresh cow pattie while waiting for me to get to shore. That ride back to town with a stinking dog on a hot August day was one of the worst.

Some things are hard to live down.
Cap n ball is offline  
Old November 21, 2005, 01:46 PM   #13
Old Dragoon
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 31, 2005
Location: The Republic of Californi
Posts: 581
Cap and Ball,
Ever make the KC gunshows?
I use to live Close by in Mo. and made most of those shows.

Glad you still have your Grandpa's land, hate the way yougot it, it is tough to loose family in war.
I too have a canoe, young dog and pond story.

I raised a couple English Setters, of the hunting type, and I had a 3/4 acre pond....I decided to put my 5 -6 month ol Setter (read 45 lbs) in the canoe and paddle about in the pond...Luckily my Nephew was there that day. Cause...about half way across the pond the dog decide to jump out, put two paws on the gunnle and jumped....canoe went bottom side up and deposited me into the cold water, I'm treading water trying to get me and the canoe to shore and not making any head way at all and my nephew was rolling on the ground laughing so hard he was crying. He didn't know it but I was beginning to get into trouble, boots full of water and all the weeds in the pond and such. Finally I holler at him that I just might be inb trouble here and he threw me a rope and I got me and the canoe out before we both went down. Then we all layed on the ground and laughed so hard we cried.
Old Dragoon is offline  
Old November 21, 2005, 01:57 PM   #14
Cap n ball
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 17, 2000
Posts: 247
I go to the shows fairly regularly, especialy if I'm looking for parts.

Yeah, it was really tough to lose him. He was the closest to a brother I ever had. Thanks for responding.
Cap n ball is offline  
Old November 21, 2005, 02:11 PM   #15
Old Dragoon
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 31, 2005
Location: The Republic of Californi
Posts: 581
Well I suspect you have seen me there. I used to set up with the Gun Leather guy from Grain Valley. I was the short fat guy in the Cowboy clothes carrying a nice old Original Smith 44 or something like it..
Old Dragoon is offline  
Old November 22, 2005, 08:14 AM   #16
Low Key
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 4, 2005
Location: In the woods of TN
Posts: 298
I think everyone has a story that involves boats and snakes, or dogs that decide not to be in the boat anymore! lol! When I used to go frog hunting with some of my buddies I carried a .22 pistol just for the snakes that hang around the edge of the pond at night. There have been several copperheads that swam out towards our spotlight and tried to get in the boat with us. I learned that you have to get your shot in before they get within 5 feet of the boat, and before the 280 lb guy in the back who is afraid of copperheads decides he is going to abandon ship and to hell with anyone who is still in the boat! He nearly killed us all one night trying to dive out of the boat and swing an oar at the snake at the same time! We did manage to get rid of the snake and keep big Tim and the rest of us in the boat, but I learned to shoot at the snake a little sooner even if it did take 4 or 5 shots to hit the thing. It was a better option than drowning!
__________________
Low Key is offline  
Old November 23, 2005, 08:59 AM   #17
Low Key
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 4, 2005
Location: In the woods of TN
Posts: 298
Lessons...

I was at the local range with a couple of buddies a few months back. They were sighting in their smokepoles for deer season, they don't regularly shoot their bp rifles...just in the fall before the season opens. I had shot about 5 or 6 shots from my rifle, (still right on target at 50 yards), and had moved on to shooting a few shots from the 58 at 15 yards. I had fired out a cylinder and all of us were standing and talking while one guy was reloading his rifle for his next shot.

None of us noticed at first that he dumped in a charge, seated his sabot in the barrel and then stopped to join in the conversation for a minute, then he dumped in another charge and seated a second sabot in the barrel. When he rammed the sabot down as far as he could get it, he got this funny look on his face...his ramrod was marked with a line that should sit even with the muzzle when the rifle is loaded...it was sitting a lot higher above the muzzle than it should have! He just dropped his head and I heard him mumble "Oh Sh**!!" Of course, all conversation stopped at that very moment and we had a good laugh at his expense!

What? You have never double loaded a BP rifle? Would you admit to it if you had? Most of us won't admit to lapses like that, , unless there are witnesses!

It was a good thing my buddy had a bullet puller with him that day. He pulled the bullet and sabot out of the barrell and we poked as much of the charge loose as we could and dumped it back out of the barrel. He didn't want to have to soak the remaining charge and pull the breechplug out and get into all of that mess so he decided to shoot out the load that was left, against our advice! I've never accused him of having all his marbles.

So he capped up and took aim downrange and the rest of us went under the shooting bench...just in case. I was envisioning a BIG blast of fire out the end of the barrel and maybe a good bulge in it after the shot, but it went off just like a normal shot and no barrel bulge from overpressure. The gas seal from the first charge prevented the remaining powder from the second charge from igniting and just blew it out the end of the barrel. I don't recommend this method of unloading however.

What did I learn? Don't talk and load at the same time, marking your ramrod to show the depth it should sit on a full charge is a good idea, and some people have more balls and less patience than they have good sense.
__________________
Low Key is offline  
Old November 23, 2005, 06:14 PM   #18
MPP1423
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 10, 2005
Location: GOODLETTSVILLE,TN
Posts: 298
low key,thats pretty funny!lol.
MPP1423 is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:52 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2014 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.10639 seconds with 9 queries