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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I have hunted my whole life and I am very interested in hunting next year with a muzzle-loader.

I have NO experience with muzzle-loaders, and I am looking for club to help me out in my area, but I have a couple of questions I thought I would ask here.

- In Oregon I have to use a traditional muzzle-loader. I am looking at buying a T/C Hawken or a Lyman. Which one would you pick and why?

- If not T/C or Lyman what would you recommend?

- Would you choose a 50 or 54 if you were going to hunt bear, deer, and elk?

- What books or DVDs are out there that would help me starting out if I can not find help locally?

I guess that is enough for now:)

Paul
 

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T/C have always made good rifles as have Lyman. Between the two, I would choose the Lyman. What type of hunting do you plan on? What are some of the average distances you plan on shooting? For deer and larger game, a .50 caliber is about the minimum. Do you want percussion or flintlock?

If money is not so much a problem, you can find many well made rifles like at Track of the Wolf. Are you adept at working with wood? You can build your own.
 

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It is early in the morning and I did not fully absorb your post. If I were hunting game as large as bear, I would go for a .58. An elk running 200 yards after you shoot it is one thing, a bear running 200 is another, especially if it is in your direction!

I will look for some starter (beginners) material and get back.
 

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FWIW, I would pick Lyman if I wanted to shoot roundball and T/C Hawken if I wanted to do sabots or bullets, both are good rifles. For Elk/bear 54 is about minimum. Sights are important and sometimes dictated by the type of rifle your state allows. You really cannot go far wrong with a rifle from either of thise companies. I converted a T/C Hawken to RB with a Green Mtn bbl and I am very fond of it and hunt RB only now. Getting any muzzleloader hunting out past 100yds will take a little work with shooting, sights, and load development. Good luck, you're off on one of the best adventures I can think of!!
 

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The Lyman great plains hunter has a1-32 twist in 54 cal so you can throw some big old slugs and still be able to shoot Rb's. Mid south shooters has some good prices on them. I have one in 50 cal and with a 395gr slug and 100grs of Swiss 1.5 1500 fps and accurate. The down sides of it a little heavy side but on the up side of it if you tick that bear off, it would make one heck of a CLUB!!
 

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I have two .54 Lyman GPRs, one flint and one cap, and one .54 T/C Hawkens. I like my GPRs better than the T/C. The .54 T/C has a 1" barrel, which feels chunky and heavy. The GPR has a 15/16" barrel, which feels slimer, lighter (eventhough it's longer) and better ballanced. The GPR is a tack driver with round balls out to 100 yards. If you also want to shoot conicals, you can get a GPH barrel extra, and would still be cheaper that a T/C. Check out these prices on the Lyman: http://www.midsouthshooterssupply.com/department.asp?dept=%4D%55%5A%5A%4C%45%4C%4F%41%44%49%4E%47&dept2=%4D%55%5A%5A%4C%45%4C%4F%41%44%49%4E%47%20%52%49%46%4C%45%53&dept3=%35%34%20%43%41%4C&dept4=%4C%59%4D%41%4E%20%47%52%45%41%54%20%50%4C%41%49%4E%53 and http://www.dnrsports.com/acatalog/D___R_Catalog_Lyman_Muzzleloaders_649.html . I would suggest a .54, which T/C no longer make in their Hawkens. Also, check this place out: http://www.muzzleloadingforum.com/f...a7525654db83682e61d9f8695107a6d/fbb_uid/9617/ . Great place for information.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
FWIW, I would pick Lyman if I wanted to shoot roundball and T/C Hawken if I wanted to do sabots or bullets, both are good rifles. For Elk/bear 54 is about minimum. Sights are important and sometimes dictated by the type of rifle your state allows. You really cannot go far wrong with a rifle from either of thise companies. I converted a T/C Hawken to RB with a Green Mtn bbl and I am very fond of it and hunt RB only now. Getting any muzzleloader hunting out past 100yds will take a little work with shooting, sights, and load development. Good luck, you're off on one of the best adventures I can think of!
We can not use sabots or bullets in Oregon. I believe that only RB and conical(?) is legal. No optics only iron sights. I have used receiver sights for many years and I am very comfortable using them for hunting.
I am use to getting close with my longbow, and I thinking that 100 yards would be my up most limit with my muzzleloader.

It is early in the morning and I did not fully absorb your post. If I were hunting game as large as bear, I would go for a .58. An elk running 200 yards after you shoot it is one thing, a bear running 200 is another, especially if it is in your direction!

I will look for some starter (beginners) material and get back.


I plan on starting out this spring bear and turkey hunting. I have used my longbow on bear and elk before and it was quite exciting to say the least.
If I have to go bigger than .54 who would you recommend for a rifle. I really like the looks of the T/C and the Lyman, but they do not show a .58 in their models.
I appreciate you looking for starter material for me!

T/C have always made good rifles as have Lyman. Between the two, I would choose the Lyman. What type of hunting do you plan on? What are some of the average distances you plan on shooting? For deer and larger game, a .50 caliber is about the minimum. Do you want percussion or flintlock?

If money is not so much a problem, you can find many well made rifles like at Track of the Wolf. Are you adept at working with wood? You can build your own.


My type of hunting is usually spot and stalk with a lot of still hunting. I am looking at starting with a percussion rifle. The distances I am thinking is under 100 yards, with that being maximum.
I will check out Track of the Wolf. I have glassed bedded and finished many rifles in my journey. I do you have some money to spend, around $500.00 to $700.00, but I was hoping that this new endeavor would not be as expensive as some others.

I truly appreciate your response and input. I had to learn traditional archery by trial and error, and I was hoping to cut the learning curve this time.
 

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It depends

I have various T/C and Lyman muzzleloaders both flintlocks and percussion and like all of them. The very best in my opinion is the Lyman Trade Rifle, .50 or .54 flintlock. I got my last deer with the .50 and patched roundball. My .54 Trade Rifle is the most accurate muzzleloader I own. Shop around because there are so real bargains out there. I have found excellent used T/C and Lyman muzzleloaders for less than $200.00. Just be careful to examine the bores of used muzzleloaders because not all of them were cleaned properly.

It depends on what you prefer, handles well and you can afford.

All the best...
Gil
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I talked with a shop in Oregon that specializes in muzzle loading and black powder and they recommended the Lyman rifles with the 1-32 twist. They are a couple of hours away, but they invited me up to go over the basics and help me get started in this new endeavor.
They also gave me the name of the local club that is in my area , which I hope to make contact with this weekend.
Thanks again and I am sure that I will be back with more questions.
 

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I don't think you will go wrong with the Lyman. I have owned several and they were very dependable guns. Glad to see a state that still believes in PRIMITIVE black powder hunting.
 

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Because of what you want to hunt a .54 caliber is my recommendation. Bigger ball, more energy, and they are normally good shooters. If you want to shoot roundball there are a couple choices. My first would be get a .54 caliber T/C Hawkins. Then get a Green Mountain Barrel in .58 caliber. They have a 1-70 twist and with that big ball that would be a game stopper. The .54 caliber barrel on the T/C I would tune in to shooting Maxiball or a large Great Plains conical. That way you have the best of both worlds.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I called our local club, "Little Butte Mountain Men" and I hope to make it next month to their annual shoot.
I have also been tracking down Lyman Great Plains rifles on the net. I think I found one I am going to buy. I am also COMPLETELY confused on what accessories to start looking for, plus how to do load development.
I have hand loader most of my life, so I understand the principle of working up loads for a rifle. Is there a site that is helpful in doing this?
Thanks for all your help and replies. Once I get myself comfortable with all of this I plan on getting my boy set up.
 

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As far as working up loads, you just have to lay with it. Start out with a low load, and work up in 5 gr increments. Shoot at least five groups with each one. Wipe the bore between each shot. Even if you choose up to a .58, I would try 3Fg. I like 3Fg because it burns cleaner with less fouling and it works great in the pan too. After working up yhr load you like, I would maybe think about making a measure out of deer antler tip or the like. I use 90 gr. 3Fg in my .62 flinter, and hang the deer antler tip from a strap on my possible bag where it is real handy. I also have a small flat primer horn with a brass charger tip. (I make these).

As far as accesories, I would purchase a possible bag (I make these), English hand-knapped flints, a vent pick, some type of knapping hammer, very thin leather or lead sheet (Lead sheet works best) to clamp the flint, a pan charger that throws 3~4 gr,. I also keep a shop rag or a piece of pillow ticking to wipe out the pan between shots which is very helpful when it is humid or rainy, a frizzen sock, (make these too).

As you get to shooting and are more comfortable with your flinter, you may find other stuff you might think helpful.
 

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Either the TC or the Lyman will serve you well.

As to caliber, with muzzleloaders bigger is better. You're only going to get so much velocity, no matter how much powder you may be tempted to craam in. The only significant increase in power available is a bigger/heavier projectile.

Forget long-range shooting at game. I know there's all sorts of talk about long-shooting with modern inlines. Much of that is BS, but when it comes to traditional, traditionally-loaded muzzleloaders it is ALL BS. 100 yards is long range. The tool will do the job, but the key to success lies in the hunter, as always -- get close, place your shot well.
 

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I have looked in vein for the begginers book, but I can't seem to find it. I will be happy to answer what ever question you feel you do not know. I used .58 caliber as a personal choice. A .54 will work on bear, it's just that a bigger ball will maintain more energy over a greater distance. For a build your own Track of the Wolf had some kits for around the $600 range. Colerain barrels are the best, in my opinion and can be had in .54, .58 and .62. If a Lyman is what you want, and it's not a bad choice, I have never seen one bigger than .54.

Still looking for that darn book!
 

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I have a book called ... Muzzleloading - to begin with. Its written by Don Davis. Mr. Davis basically takes you into the sport of muzzleloading with a flintlock rifle. He covers not only all the basics but solutions for problems you might encounter. I got the book through the NMLRA many years ago when I was a member. Its been kind of my bible when things don't make sense. That is one of the few books out there I know of.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I have a book called ... Muzzleloading - to begin with. Its written by Don Davis. Mr. Davis basically takes you into the sport of muzzleloading with a flintlock rifle. He covers not only all the basics but solutions for problems you might encounter. I got the book through the NMLRA many years ago when I was a member. Its been kind of my bible when things don't make sense. That is one of the few books out there I know of.
That is exactly what I am looking for; I will try and find myself a copy ASAP!

I have been on the net reading up on blackpowder and muzzleloading, and I have a long way to go.
I will be honest with you I am a Little overwhelmed. I spent 3 hours last night just reading on the different methods people say that you should clean your muzzleloader.
I grew up shooting centerfires, and I am the guy that my friends come to with accuracy issues, repairs, stock bedding, and handloading information. I guess I am not used to being the new guy:confused:

Do you think $400.00 for n.i.b Lyman Great Plains rifle is a good deal?

Thanks again.
 

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In this day... that's a very good price. I can remember when they were cheaper but now most stores have the flintlock priced closer to $500.00 so that would be a good deal for a NIB.
 

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VP 46,

The NRA has a book out there.
Title: The Muzzleloading Rifle Handbook ( a publication of teh NRA) It is very good book for someone just starting out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
In this day... that's a very good price. I can remember when they were cheaper but now most stores have the flintlock priced closer to $500.00 so that would be a good deal for a NIB.
cayugad,

I sent you a pm with a question and a link to a rifle.
 
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