View Full Version : Zoli Zouave Replica and Conicals

November 5, 2010, 11:49 PM
I just purchased (on an online auction) what I suspect to be a Zouave replica that's marked Antonio Zoli.

Has anyone here used maxiball in a Zouave (or similar)?

Also, I have a few maxiball from Navy Arms with bare lube grooves and weigh around 610 grains. Is there any issues with lubing the grooves with Crisco if only one or two shots will be fired? I plan on purchasing some .577 minie ball eventually for this replica but would like to put these maxiball to use if this rifle can handle them.

Thanks in advance!

November 6, 2010, 10:07 AM
I would try them. Use 85 gr Goex FF and they ought to shoot.

November 6, 2010, 12:12 PM
Crisco will be fine but minies will be easier to load.

November 6, 2010, 02:46 PM
Crisco is, in my experience, just the worst stuff in the world for any kind of ml lube.
But, you can try those maxis and see what happens. I would start with charges in the 50-60 grain range.
Expect it to be a bit of a shoulder thumper. And a genuine "ouch" at 85 grains.

November 6, 2010, 02:54 PM
Crisco is, in my experience, just the worst stuff in the world for any kind of ml lube.

It does get runny in summer heat but it does make a good lube. I've used it in my 3 band Enfield and never had to swab between shots or between strings of shots. As long as you don't mind the mess it's ok. I prefer to mix it with beeswax tho.

November 6, 2010, 06:21 PM
I bought a Zoli Zouave in the late 80s from DGW. When I got it it had a defect in the lock plate, it was slightly warped or something, and the hammer would only bust a cap about 1/3. Sent it back to them. Got it back and it fired 100% but for some reason the hollow based minis I fired out of it were hitting the target low and sideways in a shotgun pattern. With the recommended service load. Never did get that resolved, did not get around to experimenting alot with it as I was a bit disgusted. I was impressed by someone who had a Navy Arms version that was much older replica. I think the Navy looked better. The Zoli looked like some sort of cheap white wood stock, stained to look dark or something. I think the Navy had a real walnut stock. If yours works great more power to you. Italian guns vary over time.

November 6, 2010, 06:31 PM
for some reason the hollow based minis I fired out of it were hitting the target low and sideways in a shotgun pattern. With the recommended service load.

Were the skirts thin like these? .45 ACP was for size comparison on another thread. If so they should have been accurate with 60-70 grn charges.


November 7, 2010, 04:59 AM
If the minies were hitting sideways they were either too small or the lead was too hard. Minie rifles are pretty particular about the bullet. Zoli made zouaves with walnut and with the lighter colored stock, depending on the contract. I have one sold by Sears and roebuck, mine has the lighter colored stock. I suppose Sears wanted to be able to sell them as cheaply as they could. I believe Zoli was also the manufacturer of the Navy Arms Zouaves.

November 9, 2010, 03:40 AM
Those Maxiballs will most likely be a bit big to start & load easily in your Zouave. Also, l.cutler has it right when it comes to Minies.....for best accuracy the Minie needs to be no more than .002" smaller than the BORE (not groove) diameter of your rifle's barrel. A charge of somewhere around 50-60gns of either 2Fg or 3Fg should get you decent accuracy. My Zoli Zouave uses 55gns of GoEx 3Fg with a heavy (612gn) Minie, & often shoots 2-3MOA at 100 yards (13 shots) when fired prone, at 50yds from a rest it'll just punch a single ragged hole.

November 9, 2010, 05:54 AM
Out of my Zouave I've fired Patched Round Ball weren't as accurate, and Minie Balls ... I have had extreme accuracy out to 300 yards easily... and good accuracy to 500-600 yards(meaning I can hit a 2 foot gong) using the Minie Ball .575" 500gr and 60gr of ffg Black Powder.
Who needs a Maxi Ball? :cool:

November 12, 2010, 09:16 AM
I bought a new Antonio Zoli Zouave (Navy Arms) back in 1972 to use in compeition with North South Skirmish Association. It had a walnut stock and was well put together from quality parts. I used minie balls and got pretty good results with it right out of the box, how ever the team I belonged to (2nd. New Jersey Cavalry Co. K) were shooters, and took 1st in the National matches several times back then. They had a gunsmith on the team at that time and he worked my Zouave over (I helped,,, or got in his way LOL) we glass bedded the stock, relieved the barrel bands, changed the rear sight to a flip peep, re-crowned the muzzle, slicked up the lock and adjusted the trigger pull. I then spent lots of time at the range testing different minie styles and weights and when I found the most accurate minie and powder charge I redrilled the rear sight to that load. The end result was a rifle that had the capability to shoot way better than I could hold. I sold that rifle to a new team member when I left the team. Anyway I think the Zoli Zouave is a fine gun. Good luck with it.

November 12, 2010, 04:08 PM
Yep, I have won many a match with mine with 55 grs Goex FFF and a .575
round ball and either .015 patch or .020 patching. The most effect on accuracy with mine, was to replace the musket cap nipple with one for the
no. 11 cap.