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Old December 12, 2012, 12:23 AM   #26
arcticap
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OvertheHill
Now y'all need to start sending me some suggestions for a name for her.
Congratulations on finding the good 'ole gal "Becky" for a soul mate.
She says that her formal name is Rebecca, but to just call her Becky for short.
And that if you call her by her formal name then she'll think that you're getting curt with her!
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Old December 12, 2012, 12:49 AM   #27
arcticap
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chickenmcnasty
I also saw that bass pro is offering a traditions springfield hawken for around $320. How does this compare? Their 6 pay offer is tempting, but the other rifles seem much nicer.
Also, can you elaborate more on barrel twist and uses? I'm also wanting to get into one and am very confused.
Is there any good sites that have a breakdown of some of this info? I would also love to know more about .50 cal vs. .54 cal
The Springfield Hawken is a lot like the laminated Traditions Hawken Woodsman except that it has a single trigger and a wood stock. They can sometimes be found used for under $200 which means that they lose value quickly after their initial purchase because they've been made in one form or another for the last 20 years or more.

The 1 in 28" to 1 in 38" fast twist barrels are primarily for shooting bore size conical bullets or saboted bullets.

The 1 in 48" medium twist barrels can shoot both round balls, conicals and saboted bullets accurately anywhere from 60 - 100 yards with a heavy hunting load.
One fellow who built a .54 Traditions Deer hunter from a kit put a scope on it and found that it really liked shooting conicals and sabots way better than it would shoot patched round balls. So some 1 in 48" barrels will shoot conicals really great while conversely others will only prefer round balls. You never know which projectiles a medium twist will shoot better with the heavy powder charges that are used for hunting.

The 1 in 59" to 1 in 72" slow twist barrels are primarily for shooting patched round balls out to about 100 yards. But they usually require heavier powder charges for best accuracy, especially at longer range.
They can sometimes shoot only the shortest and lightest lead conical bullets at a limited range of 60 -70 yards at the most, which are the Buffalo Ball-et conicals or Hornady PA conicals. Some slow twist barrels will shoot these short light weight bullets and others simply won't.

One needs to experiment to find out what their rifle likes and there are always exceptions to the basic rules about barrel twist rates and which projectiles that they will shoot accurately and out to what distance.
Target loads have light powder charges which can be more accurate, while hunting loads need to have more powder for better penetration on deer size animals. So the amount of powder and type of projectile definitely affects accuracy.

Last edited by arcticap; December 12, 2012 at 08:20 PM.
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Old December 12, 2012, 01:04 AM   #28
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I was going to advise you get a .50 cal, as the .54 boolits are right spendy ..... .50 conicals are bad enough! I oughta start castin' at the price Cabela's and the LGS's are askin'!!!!!! ...... but you already went with the .54......
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Old December 12, 2012, 01:42 PM   #29
OvertheHill
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Some responses

JimBob...I went with the 54 on purpose. I live reasonably close to the LBJ National Grasslands (30-40 minute drive) run by the US Forest Service(most years the place is teeming with deer and wild turkey, plus lots of cottontail and squirrel, quail, dove, etc.) Folks can hunt there with a Texas Hunting License during the regular seasons (with local County limits, if any...in this County its 2 bucks plus 2 anterless deer in total, all categories/seasons combined; archery, gun, special spike/anterless week after regular gun season ends) established by Texas Parks and Wildlife, with the limitation that it is shotgun or muzzleloader only (plus archery, of course) and you hafta wear all that purdy bright orange stuff that ain't required on private land ('course early in the season, I don't go there...too many Elmer Fudds hootin' and hollerin' around; late in the season it gets real cold, for Texas, and they stay home). No centerfire/rimfire. Since its in the "Cross Timbers" region of Texas, you have some rolling plains, creek bottoms, hardwood stands, thickets, etc. So typical ranges for shots at deer, for instance, could range from close enough to almost touch 'em out to way over 100 yards (not that I'd be likely to take such long shots...I figure up to 75-100 yards depending on all the factors would be my likely limit). The wise and kind folks on this site (and a couple others) have "informed" me through their posts that the 54 would get me a better spread of ranges where I could be effective (assuming I do the stuff I'm supposed to right). Also, I'll likely end up casting my own round balls...down the road a short ways.

Arcticap...thanks for the suggestion...think I'll think 'bout it a little longer...after I shoot 'er a bit, before I name her. Might wind up having to call her sumpin' I can't put in here, if you get my drift....

DD4life...I was in the USAF Security Police in Thailand (Takh-li and Korat) in '73-'74...we were the "zoomies" infantry... securing the airfield perimeters, etc...
and I know whereof you speak 'bout the "House Mouse" and duties...knew before I bought one I'd be the one doin' all the pot-scrubbin'. hahahaa...been there before...

To all: Thank you all very much for the warm and helpful welcome. Hope I can get pretty good at this and maybe "pass it along" some day...
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Old December 12, 2012, 02:47 PM   #30
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Quote:
thanks for the suggestion...think I'll think 'bout it a little longer...after I shoot 'er a bit, before I name her. Might wind up having to call her sumpin' I can't put in here, if you get my drift....
You do your part and I'd almost guarantee you, you'll name her somethin as sweet as candy. Just remember, findin out what she likes is half the fun.

Go huntin and do somethin like let her powder get damp, when that trophy buck walks by and you hear nothin but your primer goin off...well...you'll name her all kind of baaaaddd things. It just won't be her fault.

Speakin of which, after she lets you know what load she likes and you and her are on a date at your fav. deer stand, if it's raining, a piece of tape or a balloon over the muzzle works wonders at helping to keep moisture out of the bbl.
Too, I don't like taking my bp rifle or powder in the house every night during our bp deer hunting season. It's usually cold here and bringing it in a warm house is a sure way to create condensation. Once I take her out, she stays in the garage till close of season. I load my speed loaders and they stay outside as well.

Also remember, if your rifle is cold and you throw it in a heated car/behind seat of truck for the trip home...more condensation. Either put it in trunk or in bed of truck.

If I'm hunting in rainy damp weather, the load comes out every evening ( via air blown through nipple from air compressor...bullet blown into rag box in garage so it doesn't get deformed) the bore is swabbed with a dry patch and left in garage. The next morning, another swabbing with a dry patch, she's loaded and I'm off.

One more thing, check your laws as to what your state considers to be a loaded bp rifle.

In this state, I can load my bp rifle and as long as it's uncapped(no primer on nipple) I can transport rifle in vehicle, ATV etc.

Last edited by shortwave; December 12, 2012 at 03:19 PM.
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Old December 12, 2012, 11:40 PM   #31
OvertheHill
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Sorta like that, or maybe sumpin' similar down the road...

Shortwave, I kinda like that "Candy"...or maybe sumpin' similar...we'll see, but gives me an idee beyond just girls names, anyhow....

Naah, I know when to cuss the right party to blame for not thinkin'. Rifles don't think, they just do exactly what you tell 'em to, if'n you use their right language...if'n you don't...that's your fault.

Here in Texas, muzzleloaders are considered "not loaded" 'til they're primed. By Parks and Wildlife game wardens, anyhow...what some other Police/Deputy/Trooper might think 'bout that is a different story maybe. And every shootin' range has a different idea from any of those likely as not, tho' I haven't seen them x-ray anybody's gun going in yet....

And I like to still hunt, tho as I get older and the arthritis gets worse in my hips and legs and back, its slower and I pick my way different than I used to do. Still, I'm not above taking a spot on the ground and "stand" hunting , if I see the right set of "indicators"....heavily used trail, freshscrapes and rubs...good feed and water close plus some thick cover for bedding down....yep...I'll stand there a while, right time of day....

Your procedures are nearly same as I already do with my CF rifles on hunting trips...if I'm going back out next day, they stay in the cold. Though they are unloaded completely while transporting...but the ammo also stays in the cold as well...don't mess with Mother Nature...warming up cold guns and ammo causes the possibility of condensation, even if temporary....best not to....thanks for the advice....
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Old December 12, 2012, 11:41 PM   #32
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OTH/shortwave

Wow OTH.. excellent post! I loved,
Quote:
"Liberty must at all hazards be supported. We have a right to it, derived from our Maker. But if we had not, our fathers have earned and bought it for us, at the expense of their ease, their estates, their pleasure, and their blood.--John Adams
shortwave, your advice is outstanding. Been doin' this a while eh?

B
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Old December 12, 2012, 11:49 PM   #33
OvertheHill
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Thanks Birch

But Mr. Adams gets all the credit for that oratory. You can find a bunch of other of Our Founding Father's statements/theories/philosophies here:

http://patriotpost.us/quotes

Very enlightening place, that one...and shortwave has been helpful...as have many others...

I'm very grateful...and can't think of any way to "pa it back" except "pay it forward" as I gain in knowledge and experience in this "new-to-me" sport.
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Old December 13, 2012, 12:12 AM   #34
BirchOrr
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Indeed, our founding fathers had wisdom far beyond what is common knowledge with most people today. I'm very familiar with most of their quotes/thoughts/ideas and am a life-long student of it.

Glad you've "found a home" here, and like you, I look forward to seeing what other members have to say on this forum. Glad you are with us.

Best part is... you're on a journey that will never end. Embrace it and enjoy friend!

B
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Old December 13, 2012, 05:01 PM   #35
shortwave
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Quote:
shortwave, your advice is outstanding. Been doin' this a while eh?
Hey...even a blind squirrel finds a nut now and again.

Thanks for the nice compliment. Been shooting bp for about 43yrs. But I can tell you that there are much more knowledgeable people here then I.

I don't think there is a bp question out there that somebody here doesn't have a great answer to. What tops that off is they will freely share their thoughts with you.

Welcome to the madness!
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Old December 13, 2012, 05:40 PM   #36
BirchOrr
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Quote:
What tops that off is they will freely share their thoughts with you.
Yes indeed... right or wrong!!!

Quote:
Welcome to the madness!
Madness indeed... LOL!!!!

B
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Old December 13, 2012, 06:41 PM   #37
Hawg
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Quote:
Yes indeed... right or wrong!!!
Wrong is relative. There's a lot of different right ways to do muzzle loading.
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Old December 13, 2012, 07:21 PM   #38
shortwave
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Wrong is relative. There's a lot of different right ways to do muzzle loading.
AMEN to that Hawg.
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Old December 14, 2012, 04:05 PM   #39
BirchOrr
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I stand corrected!

Hawg & SW are correct. I should have been more careful in selecting my words.

Guilty as charged.

B
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Old December 21, 2012, 12:38 PM   #40
OvertheHill
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She's here....

She came in the mail 2 days ago....got her unpacked...This is a fine rifle....better than the pictures.
The seller told me he had bought her from one of the on-line shops (don't know if I'm allowed to name them? so I won't)...anyhow the first rifle that came with his order didn't pass muster, so he sent it back...talked to someone there on the phone. Somehow he got the guy interested in doing some real "customer service". Guy calls him back later..says he went through all of them they had in stock (over a dozen) and hand-selected one he thought would do. Sent the replacement.
And that's what I just got. Excellent fit and finish, beautiful, nicely grained dark-colored stock...very, very nice looking rifle for a mass-produced gun. She's in perfect shape, obviously well-maintained, and almost broke-in with about 100 rounds through her. Doesn't look like it was shot hardly at all. And just one flaw. The original ramrod has a corroded spot on the "ram" end. Seller told me he didn't use the original ramrod, but had used a "replacement" synthetic rod. The original sat in the box and got that spot on it. Other than that, this rifle doesn't have a fingerprint, nick, smudge, scratch or ding anywhere.
And she took a nice big Ohio buck last year, so she's already "blooded". He used .530 round ball and .018 pillow-ticking lubed patch over 85 gr. of Pyrodex RS and shot sub-2" groups at 100 yards with her.

I've been doing some "shopping" around and got me a couple lists of "accoutrements" going...but most will have to wait a few weeks while my wallet recovers a bit. Still, I got her for just a few dollars more than what I was thinking of paying for that new Traditions originally...Y'all's advice turned out really, really well. And I thank all of you for it.

Cain't hardly wait to get the stuff so I can shoot her...and I can do that in my back-yard once I have some "holy black" and the stuff to clean her with.
Wooo-hoooo....
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Old December 21, 2012, 01:28 PM   #41
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Hey Congrats to ya!

Have fun and come back and give us a range report...maybe some pics.
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Old December 24, 2012, 11:23 AM   #42
OvertheHill
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Got all my accoutrements ordered...

Got all my "accoutrements" ordered. Now just have to wait on it to come in. The way the mail has been running because of the holidays, it might be 10 days to get it all in.
Then got a fun surprise last night. Friend of a friend swapped off his only muzzle-loader recently and is getting out of the black powder and shooting in general...having health problems, unfortunately. But he had 2 pounds of 777 ffg still in the original containers he didn't need any more. Gave it to me, over a nip of his favorite beverage (which I keep on hand all the time, ennyhoo, 'cause its also my favorite).
I know, I've heard already that 777 is "stinky" and "un-holy".....but it shoots in black powder guns...and it was free. hahahaa
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Old December 24, 2012, 12:10 PM   #43
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777 is good powder.... it's just expensive powder.
Free powder of any kind is also good powder.
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Old December 24, 2012, 03:48 PM   #44
shortwave
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Just remember, as far as 777 powder goes, if you are used to shooting say 100grns. of say Pyrodex you will only want to use 85grns. of 777. Shooting 100grns. of 777 is the same as shooting 115grns. of other standard powders.

In other words, you want to reduce measured 777 by 15% compared to other standard powders.
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Old December 24, 2012, 08:38 PM   #45
OvertheHill
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Yup

Absolutely, the very best powder May be free powder. If you can trust what it is, where it came from, etc, etc....this stuff is in the original 1-pound containers with original labels, etc.

I had planned on starting at 55 grains 777 ffg, .530 round ball, .018 pillow-ticking lubed patch and work up by 5 grain increments to no more than 80-85 grains until I find the "sweet spot"...

I aren't real edumacated, so I learned to make sure I know what I am doing before I do too much of anything....hard knocks been teaching me that for a looonng time.

I been reading a bunch on several different muzzle-loading forums and some other resources, both on-line and books. So I am aware of the "difference" and to allow for it with the 777 when compared to recommended charges of "holy black".

Appreciate the heads-up for sure. Always good to know 'bout stuff...before it bites ya.

Thanks guys.
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