I SERIOUSLY underestimated sidelocks

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Confederate rifleman

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Feb 21, 2008
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Now 2 range trips do not necessarily a trend make, but my Hawken is showing signs of being an exceptionally accurate rifle. In fact, nearly as accurate as my Firehawk when she was open sighted.
Largest group today was 1 3/8ths for 3 at 50. Smallest was 5/16ths.
My usually ( inline) load. 45 cal 250 gr Hornady xtp, Harvester crush rib and 70 gr of 3f Swiss. Next time will chrono it, but I'm guessing 1700 fps.
This is a new barrel ( today makes 50 rounds down bore) so she isn't close to broken in yet. Btw, she's an M stamp barrel.
I have to get an aperture sight on this one licketisplit! I expect groups will tighten up a wee bit more.
I've never got accuracy like this from a sidelock before. She's also very consistent in point of impact. Groups overlap well and she hits the same spot day after day. That is a most important trait in any rifle.
I have another factory barrel to try. It too is unfired, and I hope, just as accurate.
IdahoLewis is right. Do not discount a good sidelock.
 

Rlsmith

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Nov 17, 2015
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173
Now 2 range trips do not necessarily a trend make, but my Hawken is showing signs of being an exceptionally accurate rifle. In fact, nearly as accurate as my Firehawk when she was open sighted.
Largest group today was 1 3/8ths for 3 at 50. Smallest was 5/16ths.
My usually ( inline) load. 45 cal 250 gr Hornady xtp, Harvester crush rib and 70 gr of 3f Swiss. Next time will chrono it, but I'm guessing 1700 fps.
This is a new barrel ( today makes 50 rounds down bore) so she isn't close to broken in yet. Btw, she's an M stamp barrel.
I have to get an aperture sight on this one licketisplit! I expect groups will tighten up a wee bit more.
I've never got accuracy like this from a sidelock before. She's also very consistent in point of impact. Groups overlap well and she hits the same spot day after day. That is a most important trait in any rifle.
I have another factory barrel to try. It too is unfired, and I hope, just as accurate.
IdahoLewis is right. Do not discount a good sidelock.
What load are you using powder/bullet
 

edmehlig

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May 19, 2005
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I got to agree IdahoLewis knows what to do to get those sidekicks to shoot accurately! Not to mention he shoots a lot more than most of us do and knows how to shoot.
 

Sideshow

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Oct 14, 2019
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A good barrel shows itself no matter what its in . A good job done with 0000 steel wool then some bore polish makes em even better !!! Now thats a break in !!!!
 

Confederate rifleman

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Feb 21, 2008
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The load was a .45 caliber 250 grain XTP in a Harvester crush rib sabot over 70 grains of 3f Swiss.
The neat thing is that other than cleaning her and replacing the nipple and ( bent) wedge, I've done nothing to this rifle.
Once she's proper sighted, I can't wait to see what she can really do.
 

snapbang

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Mar 9, 2019
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I replaced barrels on two different guns with Green Mountain barrels. They are 1 in 66 twist and very long. I only shot round balls out of them but neither was fussy about the amount of powder or patch. I recall shooting between 70 and 100 g(V) of powder and all powder charges shot to the same point of impact. I loved them and killed 1 - 2 deer yearly for 30 years with them. Id still be using them but my eyes dont see the sights as well as I need to for responsible shooting. I enjoy my Wolf but the Hawken leaned in the corner of the deer blind for the entire season. Couldn't leave an old friend at home for deer season.
 

Willfish4fud

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Sep 28, 2018
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Couldn’t agree more. You may be even more surprised what it will do with .50 full bore conicals (no sabot etc.) Mines just as accurate As with sabot loads and the critter taking ability is crazy. I shot a bull elk at 90 yds broadside this year. Went 30 yards n died. Was looking forward to extracting the bullet to see how it performed. 400 gr pure lead conical with 70 gr of 777 blew right through him
 

snapbang

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Mar 9, 2019
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For the 30 years I hunted with a sidelock I never felt under gunned. Back then I didn't understand the poor BC of the round ball and minimum foot pounds of energy. I just knew that if I did my part I could kill deer at 100 yards . I never recovered a ball because they always went through. Deer were devastated when hit. These guns help me to realize the bravery and courage of our forefathers who stood toe to toe in lines on the battle field and shot into each others ranks. They were bad ass. God Bless our soldiers.
 

Dave951

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Jun 27, 2019
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Modern gun guys get wrapped up in the KE factor of bullets but they just don't look at momentum. A huge chunk of lead going at moderate velocity is going to get the job done. We shoot 58s in competition in the N-SSA and lots of guys use the same gun and ammo they compete with to hunt. So we have a 58cal minie ball going at about 1k fps, weighing in at 400+gr of soft lead. Expansion? Who needs it (although it's going to happen) as the bullet starts at 58cal. Weight, how's 400+gr? Compare that to say a 44Mag and it's an eyeopener. Even the mighty 454 Casull in it's heaviest bullet at 400gr is only moving at barely 1400fps and all it takes to kick a minie up to that range is up the powder charge from 40ish to the service charge of 60gr.

All a modern gun does is allow a larger margin of error for a poor shot.
 

snapbang

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Mar 9, 2019
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Your comment about expansion not being to critical for a large caliber gun. I always thought the same way. If a 50 caliber round ball doesn't leave a big enough hole then your hunting one very large critter. And if the bullet passes completely through now you have a long wound channel and two holes to leak out of. But expansion does have a tendency to drop them on the spot. I do like that. I'm thinking it wont be long before they come out with larger caliber Inlines. Something you can watch go through the air after you pull the trigger.
 

ronlaughlin

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Dec 29, 2007
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......Expansion? Who needs it......
Certainly makes sense to most forum members; a 58 caliber hole all the way through an animal will make it sick.



There is another way to look at expansion.........

The force to expand/deform the bullet comes from the flesh of the animal. Exerting this force on the bullet damages the flesh. An expanding/deforming bullet leads to more damage to the animal, because the work done by the flesh on the bullet tears the flesh. The flesh damaging the bullet makes for a bigger mess to the innards.

Nothing wrong with a 58 caliber hole all the way through innards however a bullet that deforms inside, leaves behind more of a mess.

The energy to expand the bullet, and tear the flesh comes from the powder; the force to deform/expand the bullet comes from the flesh. Momentum carries the bullet through, and out. The force the flesh exerts on the bullet makes a mess of the flesh.

Does this make sense?
 

Confederate rifleman

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Feb 21, 2008
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I believe the " force" is the velocity given by the powder. Its the resistance of the flesh, and fluids, in the unfortunate critter that causes expansion/ deformation.
The projectile causes a shock wave , the displaced tissue and fluids moving ahead of the projectile. The faster the projectile, the greater the effect. Also the displaced materials can't get out of the way fast enough and disperses to the sides causing a greater temporary cavity.
Expansion isn't only the nose of the projectile flattening out. Its also a function of the law of motion. Just as when fired, a minie gets shorter, because the base begins moving before the nose ( I once recovered a fired, but undeformed Lyman 575213OS, that was about an eigth inch shorter than unfired), a projectile expands not only from frontal resistance, but also because as the frontal surface expands and slows, the rear is still pushing forward. Caught between 2 forces, so to speak.
 

wildcat2

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Jan 15, 2015
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Yes can't agree more, my farther used 45 cal double barrel that has been in the family for years,and killed a loooot of deer with it. I am in the process of selling my last in line I own and only shoot and and hunt with the English sidelocks I build now. Yes I now understand my father that is long gone for using that when he owned many rifles. I got that gun out last Memorial day and shot it at our muzzleloader club rendezvous to honor him.sidelocks forever for me, wish I got into them 50 years ago. Can't thank this site for what I have learned from it.
 

Dave951

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Jun 27, 2019
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63
While high velocity and light weight will do the deed on game, it's easy to lose penetration. Think of a high velocity BB against a low velocity brick. They're both effective.

All a modern rifle does is allow the shooter of moderate skill to shoot further distances and still be successful. It doesn't make him a better shot. It's a case of using technology to cover up for shortcomings in technique.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, get good with a muzzleloader offhand and you'll be a rock star with a modern gun. Old school muzzleloaders are very unforgiving in errors of technique. The guys going for tons of velocity etc with the inlines are just proving my point. They want the "user friendliness" of a modern gun in a muzzleloader. Learn to shoot properly.
 

Sideshow

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Oct 14, 2019
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While high velocity and light weight will do the deed on game, it's easy to lose penetration. Think of a high velocity BB against a low velocity brick. They're both effective.

All a modern rifle does is allow the shooter of moderate skill to shoot further distances and still be successful. It doesn't make him a better shot. It's a case of using technology to cover up for shortcomings in technique.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, get good with a muzzleloader offhand and you'll be a rock star with a modern gun. Old school muzzleloaders are very unforgiving in errors of technique. The guys going for tons of velocity etc with the inlines are just proving my point. They want the "user friendliness" of a modern gun in a muzzleloader. Learn to shoot properly.
Your eyeballs are floating
 

Dave951

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Jun 27, 2019
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Your eyeballs are floating
How exactly? If you can't shoot and hit your target, it doesn't matter if you have the latest Buck Rogers Atomic Whizzbang Deer Slayer. You still can't shoot for shinola.

Learn to shoot properly. Get some training at Appleseed. But then again, what do I know, I'm just an Instructor with years and years of shooting and competition. The worst offenders I see on a regular basis are men. They refuse to admit they can improve and it's beneath them to accept advice. Women are much easier to work with. Best shot I've worked with recently was a 12yo girl. She went from barely hitting the backstop to cutting the wires holding up the targets at 25yds. She started that after the clothespins got to be too easy. Yeah, she was shooting my White Mt Carbine in 50cal and went to an 1863 Remington with minies.
 

dbowling

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Nov 5, 2005
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Learn how to shoot a magnum springer air rifle offhand at golfball size target at 30-40 yds and you can shoot anything better be it sidelock or centerfire..To shoot any gun sidelock or modern muzzleloader takes proper form/trigger control, one isn't better then the other..see the same attitudes develop with traditional archers/compound shooters and all it does it ruin the sport bad mouthing each other, I like both and do both same as with muzzleloaders.
They all kill equally with well placed shots and kept within their usability parameters.
 

Sideshow

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Oct 14, 2019
Messages
2,010
Learn how to shoot a magnum springer air rifle offhand at golfball size target at 30-40 yds and you can shoot anything better be it sidelock or centerfire..To shoot any gun sidelock or modern muzzleloader takes proper form/trigger control, one isn't better then the other..see the same attitudes develop with traditional archers/compound shooters and all it does it ruin the sport bad mouthing each other, I like both and do both same as with muzzleloaders.
They all kill equally with well placed shots and kept within their usability parameters.
I agree completely BUT im also tired of hearing this kind of crap from these guys....i dont have a reverse gear in this trans for bs .
You see who ran their pie hole a couple of times before i enlightened him .CONSTANTLY some sprue this insultive barf. How much we supposed to listen to ??????????????????.
 
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dbowling

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Nov 5, 2005
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I agree completely BUT im also tired of hearing this kind of crap from these guys....i dont have a reverse gear in this trans for bs .
You see who ran their pie hole a couple of times before i enlightened him .CONSTANTLY some sprue this insultive barf. How much we supposed to listen to ??????????????????.
my comment wasn't directed at you.
 

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