50 caliber stainless Thunderhawk

Discussion in 'Inline Muzzleloading' started by Confederate rifleman, Jan 9, 2019.

  1. Jan 9, 2019 #1

    Confederate rifleman

    Confederate rifleman

    Confederate rifleman

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    Just got one for $150 worth of trade goods. Sweet handling little booger! Can't wait to try it out. No QLA on this one. A little short on barrel for my taste, but I could swing it in a closet. Feels like a .22. Recoil should be interesting...
    I'm suddenly liking a non removable breechplug. Less complicated and ( hopefully) no breech plug surface issues in years to come.
    First load will be my standby in my Black Diamond. 250 grain .45 XTP in a Harvester crush rib and 70 grains of 3f Swiss. 1600 in my .50 XR. This one has a 22 inch barrel. Curious to see how the velocity holds up.
     
  2. Jan 9, 2019 #2

    dbowling

    dbowling

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    just make sure when you clean it to put some alcohol, wd 40 or something that displaces water as they tend to rust right up against the nipple in the barrel, other then that I think they are easier to clean then the removable breech plugs or at least less steps involved.
    Ive got the same gun in T/H stock, mine seems like its going to be decently accurate no more then Ive shot it, it has a tiny rough spot right at edge of crown I need to smooth out not sure if its effecting anything or not but wont hurt to fix it.
    Recoil on mine isn't bad with 80 gr pyrodex p.





     
  3. Jan 9, 2019 #3

    ported45

    ported45

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    First time I have heard of a Thunderhawk without the QLA.
     
  4. Jan 9, 2019 #4

    Confederate rifleman

    Confederate rifleman

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    Serial # 1416x and a Bold trigger. Weird scope mount set up though. Only 2 holes. I think this would be a good rifle for an extended eye relief scope out on the barrel.
    I pulled the TC stainless nipple and put in an Ampco #11. I really like those. They don't beat up the striker, are long lived ( I generally get 400 shots on them before groups start to open up) and surprisingly don't peen easily.
    There does seem to be a wee bit of crud around the edge of the breech face. No rust showing on a patch. Hope it isn't pyrodex residue, stainless or not. Hate that stuff...
    Have to say, its a well built rifle. Nary a tool mark to be seen and a very smooth bore. With the 1-38 twist, it should handle loads I like easily.
    Here's to hoping!
     
  5. Jan 9, 2019 #5

    ported45

    ported45

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    Thunderhawks came in 22" carbine and 24" rifle lengths with either Bold or Timney triggers (no rhyme or reason on which trigger you would get). They have a curved breech, so if you can find a round brass breech scraper you could clean the whole of the barrel. Sadly, the stainless content must have been very low on them as they would rust inside and out without regular maintenance. The single-screw bases never did give me any issues.

    I still have my 24" Thunderhawk.

    Good luck with yours!!
     
  6. Jan 9, 2019 #6

    dbowling

    dbowling

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    mine does not have the QLA either the earliest ones did not.
    Mine also has the Timney trigger.
     
  7. Jan 9, 2019 #7

    Confederate rifleman

    Confederate rifleman

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    I have a stainless 45 Black Diamond and I noticed that it will " tarnish" if left wet. Stainless at best is rust resistant, not rust proof. The matte finish doesn't help matters.
    Think I'll put some JB on a patch over a bore brush and try to polish the breech a bit.
    When I took her to pieces, I noticed a quality if fit and finish I haven't seen in a long time. Even better than my Black Diamonds, which is saying something.
    Will be looking for walnut soon.
     
  8. Jan 9, 2019 #8

    dbowling

    dbowling

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    T/C guns back when the early in lines were being made just had a better feel to them, more solid feeling.
    But I have to say the Omega was a quality gun even in their budget models.



     
  9. Jan 9, 2019 #9

    Confederate rifleman

    Confederate rifleman

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    The JB on a patch cleaned up the breech nicely. No obvious gremlins. Whoohoo!
    So far, I'm liking what I see. I will replace the rammer though. An aluminum one like the Black Diamonds have would be best.
    I'm off Friday and assuming its not pouring or windy enough to blow bullets into another zip code, she's gonna make smoke.
    Got a feeling, this is gonna be good.
     
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  10. Jan 9, 2019 #10

    dbowling

    dbowling

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    Good deal, you might look into having Spin Jag make you a rod with the spin jag on the end, very nice rods and worth the money I think.



     
  11. Jan 10, 2019 at 1:39 AM #11

    Pymahunter1

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    I have and hunt with the same gun. No QLA on mine either, has a Timney trigger. I’ve tried a few bullets out and found best accuracy with a 230 grain lehigh CF in a crush rib sabot pushed by 95 grains (V) of 2f 777. I’ve taken 3 deer with that combo last couple years and none went further than 30 yards. Good luck!
     
  12. Jan 10, 2019 at 3:00 AM #12

    Confederate rifleman

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    Thanks! I hope she shoots as good as she looks. Her bore is remarkable in that I can't see a single tool mark. Almost looks lapped. I'm hopeful she'll handle a.modest variety of loads. Maybe even lead...
    Friday can not get here soon enough!
     
  13. Jan 10, 2019 at 3:34 AM #13

    dbowling

    dbowling

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    I shot 1 460 gr conical from mine after I was done shooting and it shot dead center above target dot but 6 inches high so if it does that every time it will be a conical shooter for sure.




     
  14. Jan 11, 2019 at 12:47 PM #14

    Okie Hog

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    The Thunder Hawk is a nice gun. You got a deal on that one.


    Few years ago i picked up a TC Fire Hawk at a Lawton pawnshop for $100. The stock has some dings but i don't think the gun had ever been fired. Mine has the Timney trigger. Killed a lot of hogs with that gun, some with patched round balls.
     
  15. Jan 11, 2019 at 5:10 PM #15

    Confederate rifleman

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    Gonna bust caps today. Fingers crossed. Its funny though. I'm a long barrel guy, for sight radius and better ballistics ( however slight at times). But I can't get over how much I like the way this little one handles!
    So far, the only complaint is TC threaded the breech all the way through. They did that with the plugs on the Blach Diamonds too. Unnessary! Makes them harder to clean. Other than that, she's a good little booger.
    It seems that those who have Thunder/Fire Hawks REALLY like them. Haven't read much against them.
    Like me, I think there's a growing number of folk who appreciate uncomplicated rifles. This 209 or that? Headspacing or O rings? Crud rings or perchlorates? Do what with a drill bit?!
    Aw check! Gimme a pound of Holy black a tin of #11s and things that fly ( bullet, ball or sabot) and I can't stop grinning...
     
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  16. Jan 11, 2019 at 7:43 PM #16

    ported45

    ported45

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    I will have to say that short of my smokeless muzzleloaders, my Thunderhawk has beaten the rest for accuracy (Renegade, Scout, Black Diamond XR, and Omega).
     
  17. Jan 11, 2019 at 8:54 PM #17

    GM54-120

    GM54-120

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    My GMB 54-120 will out shoot my old Thunderhawk 54cal like night and day difference. The old 1-38twist is just soooooo slow for bullets longer than a 250gr XTP.

    [​IMG]
     
  18. Jan 12, 2019 at 9:04 PM #18

    Confederate rifleman

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  19. Jan 12, 2019 at 9:11 PM #19

    GM54-120

    GM54-120

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    That load combo is a total fluke too. By rights it should not shoot very well but it does. I even got a deer with that load and it was a perfect heart shot at close to the max range i would shoot with that rifle. Its a Barnes 458SOCOM TTSX bullet in a Harvester 54x45 sabot. Its super tight to load but it will load.

    Normally all i shoot in that rifle is 54x50.
     
  20. Jan 13, 2019 at 6:31 PM #20

    Confederate rifleman

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    Funny how things that , in theory, shouldn't work but often do...
    I'm wishing Harvester would make crush rib 357/45 sabots. My 1-20 Super 45XR would really be fun with the 158 and 180 gr XTP's. Conventional wisdom says too big a difference. Yet a lot of 50's shoot the 200 grain SST's very well indeed.Same .010 difference in caliber...
     

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