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Old March 9, 2019, 10:41 PM   #1
M88
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Shiloh 1874 Sharps, anything I should NOT do first?

Not sure if this post should be here or down in Black Powder and Cowboy... so redirect if so.
Just yesterday my Shiloh 1874 Sharps, their Sporter #1 with the 30 inch heavy octagonal barrel in 45-70 arrived. Although I'm sure there are plenty of folks here that have paid much more for a gun, for ME this is the most I've ever spent on any single one. After the added tang sight/ front sight, 2d day air shipping, tax and FFL, was $3400. I think it's a work of art looking at it, but I'm biased having just bought it! The fit and finish seems top notch. This thing weighs a full 12 lbs. A Garand and a half, but not planning on hunting with it, so not going to be carrying this rifle farther than from the safe to the car to the rifle range and setting it on bags full or rice on a bench. Being this is the finest firearm I currently own, I want to take extra care of it. So... first thing is to clean the film of oil in the barrel that it was shipped with, drop the block and clean the apparent heavy coat of oil from that and the firing pin. At some point I do plan on casting my own bullets, reloading with gunpowder and paper patching, the whole nine yards. That will be months down the road. In the meantime, I'm going to put some factory 45-70 rounds through it (smokeless powder).
My question to you folks is... is there anything I maybe should, or should NOT do with this rifle as I take it to the range for the first time? I'm basically saying... I don't want to screw this one up by doing anything stupid!





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Old March 9, 2019, 10:43 PM   #2
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...few more Sharps





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Old March 9, 2019, 11:04 PM   #3
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yea, do not shoot copper jacketed bullets in it and do not use a bronze brush in it. jmho. bob
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Old March 9, 2019, 11:10 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobn
yea, do not shoot copper jacketed bullets in it and do not use a bronze brush in it. jmho. bob
Already was told be somebody not to use a bronze brush... haven't heard not to use copper jacketed bullets. What is the reason behind not using copper? Curious.
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Old March 9, 2019, 11:13 PM   #5
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Vast experience on Shiloh board.
https://shilohrifle.com/forums/

I buy most of my cast .38-55 and .40-65 bullets from Montana Bullet Works.
https://www.montanabulletworks.com

Get dies and load your own, even with nitro.

ETA. Jacketed bullets won't hurt the barrel, it will just be a cleaning chore to get the copper out for best accuracy from cast. Badger recommended break in with jacketed.
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Old March 9, 2019, 11:34 PM   #6
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Bore Tech eliminator would get any copper out.

Drizzle on a nylon brush from an eye dropper, run through, drizzle again with it sticking out the end, - in and out 4-6 times, one more drizzle out of the bore, pull back through, run a patch through. Its a good carbon cleaner as well.

Repeat until no more copper showing.

For cat and just carbon get the Carbon Killer 2000 and do the same process, it help with a warm barrel while shooting. You can cut your clean cycles in half.

Stone cold its more like 10 cycles. Not a black powder shooter so no idea how that build up would clean out. My methods results are on smokeless.

Nice Gun! My wife would shoot one if we had the bucks (did many years ago)
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Last edited by RC20; March 10, 2019 at 03:40 PM.
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Old March 9, 2019, 11:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RC20
Bore Tech eliminaot would get anyu copper out.
So... jumped on Amazon, Bore Tech Eliminator 16oz $28... but then there is Bore Tech Cu+2 Copper Remover 16oz $26... do you by any chance know the difference between the two? I want to get sum!
Quote:
Originally Posted by RC20
Nice Gun! My wife would shoot one if we had the bucks (did many years ago)
Well... jump in your jeep and drive down to Pennsylvania... our wives can shoot the Sharps together, we'll shoot up some 30-06 in the Garands!
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Old March 9, 2019, 11:58 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Watson
Vast experience on Shiloh board.
Thanks Jim... I should join that forum and pick their brains concerning my new toy over there also. Good idea
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Old March 10, 2019, 12:03 AM   #9
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What not to do:
Don't dry fire by full cocking the hammer.
Dry fire by having the hammer fully down and just fire the set triggers.
Don't waste a lot of time and money shooting smokeless. Get to the black powder and soft alloy bullets for real results.
Use proper lube. ( I like SPG)
Be prepared to dazzle people with small groups at two hundred yards and more with iron sights and black powder!
all 903 by Oliver Sudden, on Flickr
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Old March 10, 2019, 01:37 AM   #10
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Don't drop the lever with the hammer down. It has to go on half cock first or you'll damage the firing pin. Surprised no one mentioned that yet. Copper jacketed bullets will do no harm to your gun. The barrel is a high quality barrel and since jacketed bullets don't hurt any other gun, they won't hurt yours. Nothing wrong with cast bullets, but if you're not a purist it makes no difference what you shoot. I've owned several Sharps rifles and jacketed bullets shot great out of all of them. I quit black powder after using it for years and just enjoyed the simplicity of smokeless and either jacketed or cast bullets. My Sharps would shoot moa on the days I was up to the task. Have fun and enjoy your new gun.
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Old March 10, 2019, 08:24 AM   #11
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Can’t wait to see all the buffalos you’ll be bagging! Lol. But congrats on your purchase. That’s a beautiful rifle.
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Old March 10, 2019, 11:30 AM   #12
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I am a has been from when copper solvents really didn't work. so shooting copper jacketed and lead in the same bore was guaranteed to make a mess. glad you guys have found different. bob
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Old March 10, 2019, 12:25 PM   #13
Oliver Sudden
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Quarter cocking the hammer is a habitual thing for me but in fact the Shiloh and original Sharps have a camming feature on the firing pin that allines with a notch in the action and lifts the firing pin the moment the breech begins to move down. My experience is based on working on Shilohs and handling original Sharps starting in 1979 but have to agree lift the hammer befor opening the action.
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Old March 10, 2019, 03:37 PM   #14
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Every Sharps shooter I have watched would half cock the hammer before swinging the lever. Except Kirk Bryan. He just pulls it open. But then he owns the factory and if he breaks a firing pin, can probably get one quick.
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Old March 10, 2019, 03:46 PM   #15
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Quote:
So... jumped on Amazon, Bore Tech Eliminator 16oz $28... but then there is Bore Tech Cu+2 Copper Remover 16oz $26... do you by any chance know the difference between the two? I want to get sum!
Unclenick on the reloading forum might. The one I went with as tested was just Bore Tech Eliminator. Very good on copper and good on carbon. I think I remember a comment the CU2 was not as effective but that is from memory.

For day in day out I used the Carbon Killer 2000 (CK2k) that is really good on just carbon.


Quote:
Well... jump in your jeep and drive down to Pennsylvania... our wives can shoot the Sharps together, we'll shoot up some 30-06 in the Garands!
That would be a heck of a road trip. 2500 miles to the states then only another 3000 over toe Pennsylvania. Passat would be better, 42 mpg vs 14 for the pickup!
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Old March 10, 2019, 04:27 PM   #16
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Very nice rifle. More pics and results!
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Old March 10, 2019, 05:17 PM   #17
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On further considerations, I think you should PM me, I will send you my FFL and then you just send the gun to me!

That way you will never be disappointed, I am willing to throw myself on the sword and do that grenade for you.
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Old March 10, 2019, 05:58 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RC20
On further considerations...I will send you my FFL and then you just send the gun to me!... I am willing to throw myself on the sword and do that grenade for you.
WHAT a guy, what a pal... I'd share a foxhole with you any day
OK well... lemme shoot this thing a bit before I send it up north!

Yes... after digging further online, seems like the standard Bore Tech Eliminator is the way to go. Also found that many agree that the Carbon Killer 2000 does a super job on carbon buildup. THAT said... one thing is obvious in the "gun" world, and that is that everybody has a favorite gun cleaner, lube etc. One they swear by as vehemently as the next guy that swears by his (or hers). I'm sure some are better than others for SOME tasks, and probably none are be-all jack of all trades super great at ALL tasks be it carbon, copper or gunpowder residue. I started years ago with good 'ol Hoppes 9 and Ballastol, and still use both, but am always looking for something a bit better at specific tasks, and ALWAYS willing to try something new to give it a shot at becoming part of my cleaning bench.

My Sharps... at some point when I start getting serious about making my own bullets, and loading 45-70 black powder paper patched rounds, which really does dirty that rifle in only a few shots, after every session I will probably at least start cleaning the Sharps with soapy warm water, something like Dawn dish washing liquid. Then rinse, dry and finish off with a good gun oil before putting it back together.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver Sudden
...but in fact the Shiloh and original Sharps have a camming feature on the firing pin that allines with a notch in the action and lifts the firing pin the moment the breech begins to move down.
I've talked to another Sharps guy who concurs this. Apparently you don't absolutely HAVE to quarter cock before dropping that block. That said, it's a good habit to get into.
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Old March 10, 2019, 07:13 PM   #19
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M88: I had an issue with my Hoppes 9 making myu wife sic,, ergh. My shop is atahced to the house (acualy a former small gage converted by the former owner, more better as I need a shop and I cna live wihtout a garage - hot happily but the house was right as was the price and .....)

Anywya, what took me to the side of LIGHT was the work a guy did with a Hawkeye borsocpe (My lyman is fine but a Hakwye is THE DELUXE we all would love to have0

He did the research of a lot of them and it came down to

1. Those two were by far the most effective (and Unclenick agrees and if that is not a good gun keeping stamp of approval.......)

2. They are NON HAX and they are NO or LOW ODOR!!!!! (see wife issue)

Yes I would go with a black powder experts take on dealing with cleaning that (I tried BP in a 6 gun years back and it was, if this is nostalgia I am an idiot and never looked back but I do understand it appeal to a lot) - clearly I was not meant to be alive 1400 to 1880 or so.

The only thing I have changed is I do my cleaning at the range (if its at home it does not get done and I get in a hurry and........)

So not only do they get cleaned (I tend to 8 hour range sessions so time is not an issue) and the warmer barrel assists the process.

Nylon brush does not get the copper thing on the Bore Tech going and both hold in the bristles better that the copper brisstles - the eye dropper just worked for a way to apply a stream and monitor it was not wasting too much.

I have taken ugly 1917s bore to where they look like they came out of the factory a week ago.

note: If you get a boroscope they will look ugly cracks and gouges etc, but that is the cut rifling not how they shoot.
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Old March 10, 2019, 07:14 PM   #20
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You did leave yourself wide open on What Should I do First.

Dang, much like my wife, I tell her and then I get the spin. Drats. I will never succeed, PT Barnum where are you when I need you.
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Old March 10, 2019, 11:38 PM   #21
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Paper patching is a game all its own.
Buffalo Arms sells the supplies, including a couple of books on the subject. Shiloh has the books, I don't know about paper and templates.

Montana Bullet Works sells pre-patched bullets and you may even have a choice of .451" bore diameter or .458" groove diameter. Expensive, though.

Buffalo Arms sells swaged smooth sided bullets for you to patch until you get mold and pot.
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Old March 11, 2019, 01:57 AM   #22
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Quote:
This thing weighs a full 12 lbs. A Garand and a half,
An M1 Garand weighs 9.5lbs (then load it, ) so not a Garand and a half, more like a Garand and a third, though not quite.

The advice against jacketed bullets comes from the accelerated barrel wear shooting them in the ORIGINAL rifles with their softer barrel steel. A new made gun to an old pattern won't have this issue, the steel used is not the same used 100+ years ago.

A got to play with a couple of Sharps that belonged to a friend some time back, cool guns. DO be aware that SOME Sharps will let you get a round in them with the rim ahead of the extractor. Take care NOT to do that.

have fun!

And don't worry about a few boxes of R-P or WW factory jacketed ammo harming your rifle, it won't. Probably won't shoot as good groups as tuned black powder loads in your gun, but they won't hurt anything.
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Old March 11, 2019, 09:09 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 44 AMP
...so not a Garand and a half, more like a Garand and a third, though not quite.
OK 44, so I had to check it out for myself, being ME . Took one of my Garands, put a full 8 rnd clip in it, and put it on the scale... 9.7 lbs! That figure will presumably go up or down half a pound or so depending on the density of the Black Walnut on that particular Garand. That puts it at about 80% of my 12 lb Sharps. Only 2.3 lbs lighter than my Sharps... or about 20% lighter. SO... should have said 1 and 1/5 Garands! I stand corrected

OK then... I knew a modern fmj bullet would not hurt my Shiloh Sharps barrel, but was curious where that "advice" I'd heard came from. Thank you. Another curiosity was, in the "How to clean" paper that came with the rifle from Shiloh, they state that the first round or two after cleaning is often a "flyer". Why would the first round out of a clean barrel not be as accurate as ones following it? Like lots of things in life, this one seems backwards!
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Old March 11, 2019, 09:21 AM   #24
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After cleaning any rifle barrel, Sharps or otherwise, a bit of cleaning residue is left in the barrel and this allows a velocity difference between the first shot and subsequent shots being fired. Being somewhat "lubed" by this residue, the first bullet doesn't hit the same POI as following shots being fired out of a "fouled" barrel. Depending on how well the gun was cleaned, how much cleaning residue was left in the barrel, and the type of bullet being used, variation can, and usually does occur. Some guns are worse than others. Some don't exhibit this hardly at all.
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Old March 11, 2019, 09:26 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Watson
Paper patching is a game all its own.
My brother in law is into paper patching big time, and yes it's a whole other world. What kind of paper, how to cut the trapazoid out of the paper to exactly wrap around that lead, what to put ON that paper before wrapping, like egg whites or thinned Elmers paper glue... many make their own "thin watered down glue" from scratch...on and on... those guys make it an art. Not sure I'll have the time to get that far into it right now, but it does seem like something I could get anal about at some point. Interesting "hobby"!

"Do you have any hobbies?"
"Sure... I specialize in paper patching lead I pour myself from wheel weights"
"?????"
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