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Old March 26, 2011, 06:25 PM   #1
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squirrels with a 45cal?

New to muzzleloading and I have been looking over gun racks for a used 32 caliber now for quite a while (on line opportunities are less interesting to me so I have only a couple of shops that I can check) as my first ML - a practical idea since I do not typically punch paper, nor am I a deer hunter. While I typically see loads of 50 cal and 54 cal guns, today I ran across a TC Hawken percussion in 45 cal. So is this just too large for squirrel and is it best if I just continue to wait for a 32 caliber gun to show up?
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Old March 26, 2011, 06:33 PM   #2
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You'll be happier with the .32.

A .40 maybe, but not a .45. Wait for the .32.
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Old March 26, 2011, 06:33 PM   #3
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Hello, longfellow. Years ago, I used a .45 flinter to take a nice fat fox squirrel. took head shot. It is a little large though.
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Old March 26, 2011, 06:53 PM   #4
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I like the way you think !!!

I too started out with a .50, TC-Hawken, then was lucky enough to get a Cherokee. Did not quite work out like I thought it would. Now I use my .36 Seneca and life is good. I also use my .45 Seneca but still prefer the .36. The .45, TC-Hawkens are fine but keeping the outside dementions, they are heavier than the .50's One nice thing about the .45, is that you can use it on squireels to work out the hunting bugs and then use it on deer later in the season. As you have found out, some of these are hard to come by and way over-priced. ......

I do have a TC Sytem-1, in .32 but it's one of those dreaded In-Lines. Well made and great shooter. Let me know if you are interested. .....

Be Safe !!!
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Old March 26, 2011, 07:13 PM   #5
Join Date: November 22, 2010
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Check out this link. They have .45 calibre sabot rounds utilizing a .355 or .357 bullet. That might be the answer to your problem.

"Don't under estimate us old people. We can't run, but a lot of us know how to REALLY ruin your day!"
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Old March 26, 2011, 10:09 PM   #6
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A ,32 is a nice "squirrel rifle" - I had a CVA .32 squirrel rifle for a while and it was a nice shooting rifle - large enough to take a squirrel - small enough to not "clean" it at the same time. In my "downsizing", I sold it. I still have my .36 underhammer H & A though and it also does a nice job on squirrels - simple rifle and fun to shoot. A good caliber for most things small whether it be squirrels, rabbits or even a woodchuck. Fun to plink with as well and doesn't require a lot of lead/powder. Good luck in your search and I hope you find a rifle that is right for you.
If a pair of '51 Navies were good enough for Billy Hickok, then a single Navy on my right hip is good enough for me . . . besides . . . I'm probably only half as good as he was anyways. Hiram's Rangers Badge #63
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Old March 27, 2011, 06:15 PM   #7
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Just something I seen as a kid

We were down on the farm one day, one of the guys in the family was shooting a 45 colt winchester rifle from off the back porch, not black powder. We kids, always thought he was crazy anyway, don't remmber how many rounds was fired, after the shooting had stoped, we went out where he was, he had about one squirrel for every shot fired. Believe those rifles hold about ten rounds, anyway needless to say he was gut shooting them, they had a big .45 cal hole right through the gut. I guess thats ok, they never knew what hit them, thats what matters to me the most, is a clean kill when hunting anyway. all he had to do was skin them. I guess a head shot is good, but then you have to gut them. I know this is for black powder, but a .45 on a squirrel, is a .45 on a squirrel. Just for the sake of what your wanting to do, I'd wait for the .32 or .36 cal. I believe the old timers would have had a .32 cal. I want a kentucky long rifle myself in .50 or .54, just can't spend the cash right now. Sorry Longfellow, just seeing the post about you wanting a .45 for squirrel shooten brought this memory back from my childhood.
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Old March 27, 2011, 08:30 PM   #8
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also check the legality of the firearms for small game hunting, her in pa no larger than .32 for blackpowder is legal on small game.
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Old March 28, 2011, 01:52 AM   #9
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This is a bit off topic but read Mark Twain's Hunting the Deceitful Turkey. In this delightful story at one point he talks about squirrel hunting with a muzzle loading rifle...

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