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Old November 8, 2005, 06:42 PM   #1
injun
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CVA - Traditions - Etc. (What can we do about it?)

Been Muzzleloading for over 20 years now. Since high school. Built my first which was a TC Hawken and bought an inline a couple of years ago, a Traditions rifle. I had been shooting 100 gr 777 loads in the gun since. All the while not knowing that I was risking my life. I never used a 150 grain load, thank goodness, or i may have been severely injured or killed. After much of the reading i recently have done on the internet, much of which was written by Randy Wakeman, I have decided to retire my Traditions rifle for hunting. Indeed, I don't feel comfortable with more than a 50 gr load in this gun allowing for the barrel's stamped pressure rating. I feel ripped off, but mostly relieved that I have been informed before I injured myself or someone else.

Recently, I went to the Wal-Mart that I purchased the gun from. I brought pages printed from the internet documenting the safety deficiencies of the Spanish-made guns they carried. I did not talk to the idiots in sporting goods, but had them summon the manager. When he arrived I went into my request that he not stock the guns any longer and to forward the gravity of this through the proper channels. The answer I got from him was, "they are all manufactured according to industry standard". Of course, I disagreed and asked him to just read what I brought to him. Before leaving, I told him that if anyone locally was injured by one of these guns purchased after my notification, i would inform the victim that I personally informed Walmart and him of the danger of these muzzleloaders, and that I would consider not only the manufacturer, but also Walmart and the Manager liable.

My sense is that Walmart, Cabelas, and so on who market these weapons are now liable for injuries. It seems implausible, by now, that retailers do not already know the weapons are not rated for their stated purpose. Something tells me that if these retailers stopped purchasing these weapons until their quality met a certified standard, one of two things would happen. The imports would be improved or they would cease importing them.

I urge everyone to voice your concerns to your local retailers. There is not enough press on this problem reaching consumers and people are largely in the dark about it (as I was). If it is possible, maybe we can cause the retailers react for the benefit and safety of all who may muzzleload now and in the future.

Regards to all
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Old November 8, 2005, 08:47 PM   #2
mtnbkr
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Got a link to any articles about this problem?

For what it's worth, talking to a store manager won't do jack in any company. You need to get in touch with a district manager or higher. If Wal-Mart is like most retail companies today, all merchandising decisions are centralized and out of the local manager's control.

Chris
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Old November 9, 2005, 02:49 AM   #3
Low Key
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FWIW, it's been my experience that wal-mart doesn't give a crap about people unless it affects their bottom line. If you can affect their profits they will listen to every word you say and if you can't affect their profit margin, you might as well just bang your head against the wall. You could go high up on the corporate ladder with your concerns and if you can, get the consumer product safety commision involved. You can also tell everyone you know who muzzleloads not to use these guns.
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Old November 9, 2005, 04:19 PM   #4
20cows
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Souces?

Are we sure this isn't another "in an inteview with Merv Griffin so-and-so admitted his soap company was raising money for Satin and the public doesn't care."

I'd be careful about wisdom found on the internet.
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Old November 10, 2005, 01:16 PM   #5
injun
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It's clear to me.

If one's barrel is stamped with a pressure rating which translates to approximately 10,000 psi, then I think it prudent to limit the gun to charges which produce pressure less than this amount. If a 150 gr charge can produce pressures of 27,000 psi and muzzle energies of 2500 ft-lbs, then a 50 gr charge will be safe in the gun taking the barrel to 90% of the rating (more or less). Unfortunately, the muzzle energy of less 1000 ft-lbs is not interesting to a hunter who wishes to deliver killing energy to big game.

A link for mtnbkr

http://www.chuckhawks.com/dangerous_muzzleloaders.htm

Let us be clear. The manual for my Pursuit states the gun is rated to 150 gr. of pyrodex pellets. Mr. Wakeman references an engineer's discussions with CVA where CVA tells him that the stamped rating of the barrel is a "minimum specification". I also have a degree in engineering. The minimum is specification is a minimum required MAXIMUM pressure rating. In other words, the barrels MUST AT LEAST withstand the repeated application of pressures for which the barrels are stamped. To operate the the gun above this rating is to operate the weapon within the area designed as a safety factor.

Why a safety factor? Well, for one, because there can be imperfections in the metal which become exacerbated by use. For another, it is possible to double load. And there are other possible scenarios where the safety factor would be needed.

If you put a 150 gr load in your spanish made barrel stamped for the pressures of what seems to be approximately 50 grains, and happen to kill or maim yourself, then don't you think the manufacturer of the barrel is going to just say, "Aren't you an idiot? Read the stamp, we are not liable for your stupidity".

This, particularly, is Mr. Wakeman's legitimate complaint. The distributors of weapons made from these barrels are misrepresenting the loads these guns are capable of handling safely. Indeed, it would seem that referring to the stamped rating as a "minimum specification" that CVA is suggesting that the gun should operate, at the very least, at that pressure. Of course that's CRAZY. One should always operate pressure rated equipment BELOW the pressure rating, ALWAYS. And they just couldn't mean that by "minimum specification" could they? How could anyone suggest that one should always flirt with disaster operating equipment in the area designed as a safety measure?

I believe this to be a matter of serious concern.
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Old November 10, 2005, 01:54 PM   #6
20cows
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All the CVA guns I've dealt with were kits. I don't believe I have ever seen a proof mark on one.
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Old November 10, 2005, 02:03 PM   #7
injun
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Stamps

My Pursuit has a stamp. I can't speak for which guns are stamped and which are not. Mr. Wakeman points out that the source of the barrels is the same for several US distributors, to include CVA and Traditions. The stamping may only be of the inlines, I don't know. Maybe the barrel manufacturer wants to protect itself by stamping the barrels. Who knows?
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Old December 26, 2005, 10:15 AM   #8
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Winchesters Muzzleloader is also a Traditions made from what I have seen, if this is true do you think Winchester is going to take such a chance? Also Austin and Halleck is Spanish made. I also saw one of randy wakemens articles praising the Winchester which is just a repackaged Spanish made gun DUH!!!!!!!!! I have read a few of randy's other bashing articles and I feel he is looking for 15 minutes of internet fame. Where is the proof of all the dead and maimed CVA and Traditions owners?

I owned a TC Cherokee that couldn't get within 20% of max load without an over pressure problem. I have had more quality problems with T/C's muzzleloaders than any other gun and I live in N.H. where they are made. I mhave a friend who swears by TC, he says they are great. He owns 5 of them and had to send 3 back due to problems and since they fixed them without a hazzle he says they are great.

I owned a Black Diamond that had the scope mount screws drilled off center and the scope could not get zeroed on target at 100yds, also the false muzzle looked like it was made with a rat tail file. I took it too fox river outfitters which is T/C's N.H. warrenty station and the idiot cranked my windage so hard he broke my $400.00 scope. and claimed there was nothing wrong because he took a scope zero tool stuck it in the barrel and destroyed my scope to get it to center!!!

I went to T/C and they were not happy and replaced the barrel but not the scope and Burris would not repair it for free due to abuse by the A-HOLE at Fox Ridge! I shot the new barreled black diamond and the guns best group was 4 1/2 inches at 100 yards for 3 shots after 3 days of various bullets, sabots, and loads. When I called T/C and talked to tech support they said it meant thier accuracy standards, when I asked what the standard was they said it was not public information!

I went out and bought a Traditions 209 and it shoots 1 1/2 inches at 100yards and the trigger is actually better than the black diamond! I have owned the gun 4 years, it has always gone boom with 90 grains of 777. The Black Diamond I owned as far as I am concerned was not a diamond but a piece of charcoal.

I have found that if you want a GOOD American made muzzleloader go with Knight. I wish I could endorse T/C as they are made here at home but I have owned 3 and had problems with all 3.
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Old December 28, 2005, 02:03 AM   #9
injun
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A more moderate response

I don't think anyone said any of the Spanish made barrels are bad. The Spaniards I am sure make a good barrel. I like my 209 Pursuit. I like the sight, the trigger, it is an accurate gun. I just don't feel comfortable with a 100 gr. load of 777 with a 460 great plains conical. The question isn't whether an extruded barrel from Spain (or anywhere else for that matter) is safe. I think it is a valid question, though, to ask whether the barrels are safe for the 150 grain loads that we are encouraged to use them with.

In truth, I think it is a good question to ask about any barrel (spanish extruded or not). I recently purchased a SS Sidekick but I have already decided to limit the charge for the 460 conical to 90 gr. This being decided after I learned a little more about pressures in 50 cal. cartridge loads. In any event, I have never put three 50 gr. pellets in ANY muzzleloader and I am sure I never will.

Fact is, the muzzleloading industry is pretty lackadaisical about informing users of things like.

What maximum pressures should be.

What charges produce these pressures for specific bullets.

Magkor's site seems to suggest that 120 grain loads are great with 400+ grain conicals in 45 Cal. rifles. Should one do this? Of course not. I don't think anyone should feel comfortable making a 45-120 out of his .45 muzzleloader. I have no foggy notion what the actual pressure of such a load would be, but i do feel comfortable saying it exceeds 30,000 psi. I don't own a .45 and I am sure there aren't any bullet manufactures making 400+ bullets for use in muzzleloading in 45 cal. Even so, I would not feel comfortable loading a 325 gr bullet (which I know is made) in a .45 cal muzzleloader with 120 grain of BlackMag3.

I have to shoot a heavy conical for elk. And of course, when hunting, I would like to have as much energy as I can while still operating my muzzleloader safely. To the extent these extruded barrels have been involved in the accidents Randy noted, the stamped pressure rating, and the knowledge I have of the pressures I am generating with my heavy conical loads, I just can't bring myself to load my beloved Traditions Pursuit with these loads. Which, as I said before, makes me _feel_ ripped off.

As to Randy's intentions, let me say this. I do think he is sincere about wanting to inform people about the risks of using heavy loads in these barrels. I don't think there is anything to gain and probably much to lose in knocking heads with CVA, Traditions, and so on. As to whether Winchester would take a chance by licensing its name to a gun which may be unsafe for the 150 grain loads recommended for use with it? Why wouldn't they? If Winchester would like to provide everyone with the testing which supports a maximum operating pressure which is safe for the gun and pressure results from various loads using the 150 grain charge, THEN I am more than happy to agree with you that Winchester isn't taking chance with their name.


Best regards, Phil
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