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Posted: 9/3/2003 12:41:08 PM EDT
I need help selecting a muzzle loader for hunting in Oregon (that means no in-line rifles). Make, round ball vs. conical, caliber, barrel twist, etc...

I am thinking about one of the Civil War replicas like either the Remington 58 or a Springfield 58 caliber.


It needs to be big enough to kill an elk.

Thank you,

Karl
Link Posted: 9/3/2003 1:52:07 PM EDT
I wouldn't go with any of the military replicas you mentioned. They're heavy, there aren't very many really good projectiles available, you'll definitely have to cast your own, and they'll generate enough recoil to the point that they won't be comfortable to shoot during an extended range session.

For traditionally-styled muzzleloaders, T/C is king here. They've taken all of the best features of original guns and combined them with the best modern necessities.

Definitely go with a gun capable of shooting conicals. Roundballs are great at the range, but they don't deliver enough downrange energy to be consistently effective. I don't care what anyone says about roundballs, THEY SUCK ON DEER and I sure as hell wouldn't use one on elk.

T/C's Renegade hunter would be my choice. It features a 1 in 48" twist, making it suitable for round ball or conical, it has a recoil pad, and is compact and light enough to carry through the woods after deer. I have a similar rifle, a left-handed Fox Ridge Outfitters rifle, which is more or less a Renegade from T/C's custom shop.

The T/C Renegade Hunter:


.50 caliber conical guns offer a good choice of projectiles. You can cast or buy ready-made slugs just about anywhere (it's like having a .30-06).
Link Posted: 9/3/2003 2:08:58 PM EDT
I would suggest a minimum of .54 cal for Elk.

Armi Sport make a nice 1861 (.58) Springfield replica.

Most of the North-South skirmishers use this rifle. Well made, and it's price wont break the bank. It has a 1:66 twist which will stabilize both round and Minie balls. You will probably have to cast your own Minie balls, since each musket shows a distinct preference for weight and overall finished diameter. I cast my Minies .002 under bore diameter, which allows me to fire dozens of shots before swabbing. Five-shot groups at 100yds will do about 2-3".

Another choice would be a .58 Zouve.
Link Posted: 9/3/2003 4:24:49 PM EDT
I shoot a .45 European Armory Arms Hawken clone, paid less than $100 for it, is as accurate as anything else I shoot with iron sights up to 75 yds. Took a little experimenting to get the right powder/ball combination but I agree, its just like a 30.06.

rk
Link Posted: 9/3/2003 6:42:13 PM EDT
Jim Dandy is dead on.
A good hawken is a workhorse.
Link Posted: 9/4/2003 8:13:05 AM EDT
I was also considering a rifle like the Lyman with the double set triggers. Do you fellas like double set triggers?

Karl
Link Posted: 9/4/2003 8:46:41 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/4/2003 8:47:20 AM EDT by Sukebe]
I like the Lyman Plains Rifle. You can get it in kit form as well. I may pick up a .50 Cal. flintlock kit this winter just for fun. I like the double trigger.

When I'm not using my Knight D.I.S.C. in-line (your que JD), I shoot a Traditions Hawken Woodsman caplock in .54 Cal. Althought it's a budget rifle, it shoots dead on balls at 100 yards with conical bullets. The set trigger is crisp and has never failed me. It looks good too.
Link Posted: 9/4/2003 9:10:59 AM EDT

When I'm not using my Knight D.I.S.C. in-line (your que JD)

I'm retired from that discussion.



I was also considering a rifle like the Lyman with the double set triggers. Do you fellas like double set triggers?

Set triggers are fine, but they're a little unhandy in the woods. The Lyman Plains Rifle is one of the best looking traditional-style muzzleloaders, but you'll hate it if you shoot conicals with that crescent butt (trust me).
Link Posted: 9/4/2003 9:26:56 AM EDT

Another vote for the Lyman Great Plains rifle. I've got one in .50 caliber and it is deadly on whitetail. It has the double trigger, but I don't use the "set trigger" when hunting...only when doing long-range target shooting. I only shoot round balls out of it and it has never failed me.
Link Posted: 9/4/2003 3:09:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Jim_Dandy:

When I'm not using my Knight D.I.S.C. in-line (your que JD)

I'm retired from that discussion.



Here's to that.
Link Posted: 9/13/2003 2:47:39 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Jim_Dandy:

When I'm not using my Knight D.I.S.C. in-line (your que JD)

I'm retired from that discussion.



I was also considering a rifle like the Lyman with the double set triggers. Do you fellas like double set triggers?

Set triggers are fine, but they're a little unhandy in the woods. The Lyman Plains Rifle is one of the best looking traditional-style muzzleloaders, but you'll hate it if you shoot conicals with that crescent butt (trust me).




What he said about the conical and 100 grains BP,with the crescent brass buttplate!

Hard to hold a bead while anticipating the askicking you are about to partake in!

Bob
Link Posted: 9/13/2003 6:09:38 AM EDT
I second a shotgun buttplate - the traditional crescent only looks cool, but they kick hard.

I disagree about the 1:48 twist TC; it won't stabilize many conicals very well, you should either swap the barrel for one with a twist in the range of 1:28 to 1:32, or just buy the rifle out right with a tighter twist. The compromise twist (1:48) shoots round balls okay, and lightweight (i.e., short) conicals okay, but does nothing too well.

Double set triggers work just fine for hunting. Don't adjust the set so light that you lose the adjustment screw in the woods. The nice part of a set trigger is using the set when there is plenty of time to take a shot, or using the trigger normaly for a quck shot.
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