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 Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion

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FrontierGander
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PostSubject: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   September 6th 2016, 10:42 pm


The Traditions® Mountain Rifle is a high-quality modern muzzleloader with an old-school flare. The Mountain Rifle maintains the classic styling and handling of time-honored Sidelock rifles, while offering great performance and affordability.

Weight: 8lbs 3oz
Overall Length:  48 3/4"
Hooked Breech
Flintlock & Percussion
.50 Caliber with 1:48 twist
Traditional Sights
Lifetime Warranty

The double set triggers I judge to be set to around 3lbs with a little over travel in them. I have not taken the triggers out of the rifle yet to grease them properly and once I do that, I am sure any creep I feel now, will disappear.

The triggers also seem to be inletted properly, depth wise. On the original Mountain Rifle, the previous makers had some trouble inletting the triggers to deep and so you had problems when you went to full cock, the lock wouldn't always catch that mark because the trigger was rubbing up against the sear, preventing the sear to engage the tumbler. Shimming under the front of the trigger to lift it up out of the way a bit was needed to fix this issue. So far, I have NOT experience this episode on the Traditions Mountain Rifle.


The Mountain Rifle features a double set trigger in an oversized glove-fitting, trigger-guard.

The trigger guard leaves a good deal of room to shoot with a gloved hand! I personally wear glove mitts where I can pull back the fingers cover and expose my fingertips. I feel more in control of the trigger when I can FEEL it with my bare finger.


The Mountain Rifle sports a .50 caliber ,32" Barrel with a 1:48 Twist & Browned Cerakote Finish to ensure a rust free hunt.




Fully adjustable Traditional rear sight and German Silver Front sight makes for precision aiming.


A great looking addition is the Hexagon ramrod thimbles! These are a really great way to dress up a barrel and make its appearance stand out in a crowd! Rifle also features a wooden ramrod, not the plastic stuff other models come with.

Note: Ramrod is NOT made of Hickory and is flexy. Shooter should be careful while loading as a flexy ramrod can easily break.

All trim & the barrel on the rifle has been rust proofed by using Cerakote.

Cerakote is a ceramic based finish that can be applied to metals, plastics, polymers and wood. The unique formulation used for Cerakote ceramic coating enhances a number of physical performance properties including abrasion/wear resistance, corrosion resistance, chemical resistance, impact strength, and hardness.

I must admit that when I shot and cleaned these rifles for the first time, It was a very disturbing feeling to not oil the barrel afterwards! Now that is the EXTERNAL barrel! Be sure you oil the BORE after cleaning as it is not protected by Cerakote.

When I first cleaned the percussion model I used hot soapy water and my jaw hit the floor when I put the breech end of the barrel into the water and saw all the cap residue FALL RIGHT OFF without scrubbing it! I still used a plastic tooth brush however and scrubbed the mating area between the barrel and drum to ensure all fouling was removed.


Overall inletting on the Mountain Rifle is great! The buttplate and patch box look amazing, especially in the upper corners where most mistakes are often made.

The Toe Plate is also another great add on to keep the bottom of the stock safe from dirt/rocks/ hard hits while in the field.


The patch box is made of what appears German Silver. With a little custom ingraving, this patch box could have some real neat personalization added to it.


Overall Inletting
on a scale of 1 to 10, I'd give a solid 9 on this rifle. The inletting around the butt plate and toe plate are outstanding considering they are rounded corners. I attempted this on another Hawken of mine and my skills lacked greatly in this area. The only real flaw to hurt the inletting rank is the cheek piece.

 At the beginning it got a little out of round and some edges we left. Also a little dipping in the wood where the butt plate wood is thinned down and then meets up with the cheek piece, they did not remove enough wood and can be felt ( a round bump) by the hand and the eye can pick up scratches that were not feathered out enough. This certainly does not hurt its ability to shoot or take down game, but I know how pesky some folks can be by wanting top notch finishes on lower priced rifles.


The Mountain Rifle has excellent balance and feel in your hands. The balance point is directly between both wedge keys. I am 6'2 170lbs and its not one of those rifles that tips up and down when you shoulder it. Some have asked if its a cheek slapper because the sights are so low.

No, it is not a cheek slapper and the sights are so low when you get the rifle, because they need adjusting at both the rear sight adjustment screw, as well as filing the front sight down. There is a ton of front sight to work with but always remove a little at a time, shoot, and remove a  little more if needed.

You can always remove material, but putting it back is mighty impossible!

My rear sight adjustment is maxed out but I still am hitting low on the target at 100 yards. I just removed a nickels thickness worth of front sight with multiple files and now I should have a great deal of adjustment available with the rear sight adjustment screw.

The lock is heavy duty and does take some thumb muscle to pull it back. Even with a worn out nipple, I highly doubt the shooter would ever experience hammer blow back simply due to that heavy duty main spring. The lock is bridled to prevent warping if someone mistakenly over tightens the lock screws.

On this Percussion model, I did run into a small issue of the rear lock screw sticking out a little to far and rubbing up against the hammer. When this happened, the lock plate moved outward a bit and after checking for inletting rub marks, it was a head slapping moment when I noticed the lock screw pushing up into the hammer. After a couple trimmings on the jewlers grinders, the screw was sized down properly and could be tightened out without running into the hammer. This is a very common occurrence you can run into from time to time.

On the Range I used what I call my standard Percussion Load in everything from a .50 on up to a .58 caliber shooting patched round ball.

This standard load consists of 80 grains Jim Shockeys Gold ( Triple 7 - Pyrodex RS - Select or Goex ) a home cast .490" round ball and .015" patches lubed lightly with Frontier's Anti-Rust & Patch lube. I firmly seat the ball on top of the powder until I feel the powder compress.

Knowing that I would hit low, I went and took a few shots to get the feel of the rifle and see how smooth and consistent the barrel was.

At 50 yards using the load provided above, I took a couple shots, adjusted the sights up a bit, took a couple more and finally ended up maxing out my rear sight adjustment. The front sight will need to be filed down about a nickel thickness worth so I can use that rear sight correctly.

The rifle grouped TIGHT at 50 yards and reloaded easily considering I was not cleaning between shots.

Now that I knew where I was with my sights, I took my time and settled in to take 3 more accuracy shots. Those Three shots just put a smile on my face that a Mack truck couldn't wipe off!


Using 6 O'clock hold on the bull eye, I was dead on, but I still needed to get a little higher. Grabbing a micro screwdriver I was able to get a couple more turns out of that rear sight adjustment screw and got it perfectly 3" high at 50 yards.

Next I loaded up and moved out to 75 yards, my max range for bear hunting this year. Using the ATV seat as a rest ( Kind of mimmicks a log ) I took my first shot, Smiled from ear to ear, took another, kept calm, reloaded another round and took my final shot at 75 yards. For size comparison, that orange bulls eye is 3" diameter.

The rifle was then ready to go hunting with!

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Last edited by FrontierGander on July 9th 2017, 9:45 pm; edited 10 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   September 7th 2016, 9:52 pm

A little info and pictures. As I shoot and work more with the rifle, I'll be able to give a full detailed review about the rifle and the loads that it likes.
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   September 8th 2016, 6:48 am

Not sure what guns Traditions thinks come with plastic ramrods? All the guns competing in this class come with hickory ramrods. Tradition shouldn't even mention the ramrod in the description.

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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   September 8th 2016, 12:28 pm

I think it's a fine looking rifle.
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   September 8th 2016, 4:43 pm

Awesome rifle Exclamation When you gonna sell it Question 

Ray............

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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   December 30th 2016, 7:57 am

I bought one and returned it shortly after.  The gun looked nice, as you would expect, but the barrel was trash.  Uneven rifling, really sharp lands and as rough as pavement.  (bore scoped).  Not all traditions barrels are like this, but I feel I received a factory defect. That is ok I thought, this gun has a factory warranty.  I called traditions and I was told this barrel condition is normal and any problems I am experiencing are my fault.  I am sure most of their rifles are fine guns, but my experience with a clear factory defect and the pitiful customer support soured me on the brand forever.
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   December 30th 2016, 5:38 pm

I will 2nd their pitiful customer support. Just plain awful. As a result, I haven't recommended a Traditions ML in over 14 years.

The one John has pictured here is splendid / superb. Nice job putting those customized touches to it. That's the nicest Traditions Mountain Rifle I've ever seen.
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   December 30th 2016, 5:41 pm

I'd like to see some pics of that BORE. I've got 5 traditions on the wall and all bored look perfect.
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   December 30th 2016, 7:00 pm

It isn't my intention to bash an entire brand or seem rude. I am sure the vast majority of traditions rifles are top notch. 1 bad barrel doesn't ruin a company, but in my opinion, poor customer service does.  Years ago, I bought a new Remington 700.  There was a bad streak in the barrel.  I called the company and sent in the gun for a new barrel.  That is customer service.  I am sorry to see a company will not see a factory default barrel as warrentable- its like its taken personally to say 1 out of who knows many barrels is a lemon.
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   January 1st 2017, 4:12 pm

Midway Has these Mountain rifles in kit on clearance for 252.75 not a bad price at all . I almost bought  one but Ive got 2 CVA Mountain rifles already a 50 and a 58 .But Ive been wanting a 32 for years and they also had Traditions Crockett 32 kit on special that ended last night . I got one coming should be here in 3 or 4 days . Just hope I don't have any problems with it like I did with my Lyman Plains kit I got last year came with unfinished barrel and missing parts took forever to get another barrel and missing part but it came out great after I got it all finished.

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CVA 50 cal Mountain Rifle         Pedersoli Quigley 45/70          Pedratti  45/90  sharps                             
CVA 50 cal Mountain Pistol        Pedersoli Quigley 45/120        Lyman Great Plains 54 cal Flintlock
2 CVA 45 cal  Kentucky Rifles    Pedersoli Kodiak Safari 72 cal  Pietta 1858 Remington New Army 44 cal
Cabelas 58 cal Hawken             Colt Navy 36 cal                     Pietta 1863 Remington pocket rev 31 cal
Pedersoli Kodiak 58 cal             CVA 58 Cal. Mountain Rifle      Classic Arms Co 44 Cal New Orleans Ace
CVA 45 Cal Derringer               TC Renegade 54cal                 Navy Arms Co. Pietta 12 gauge double
Pedersoli 12 gauge double        Traditions Crockett 32 cal        2 Traditions Mountain Rifles 50 cal
Pietta 1851 Conf Navy 44
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   January 4th 2017, 7:30 pm

The more I thought about the Mountain rifle kit the more that price just kept calling me. I usually try to build at least 1 kit in the winter to keep busy . I decided to go ahead and get one to build after I get done with the 32 I just ordered .My wife told me if they are that cheap just get 2 and try to sell one after its built so just couldn't help myself I ordered 2 now Ive got 3 kits to build should fill my free time for quite awhile.

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CVA 50 cal Mountain Rifle         Pedersoli Quigley 45/70          Pedratti  45/90  sharps                             
CVA 50 cal Mountain Pistol        Pedersoli Quigley 45/120        Lyman Great Plains 54 cal Flintlock
2 CVA 45 cal  Kentucky Rifles    Pedersoli Kodiak Safari 72 cal  Pietta 1858 Remington New Army 44 cal
Cabelas 58 cal Hawken             Colt Navy 36 cal                     Pietta 1863 Remington pocket rev 31 cal
Pedersoli Kodiak 58 cal             CVA 58 Cal. Mountain Rifle      Classic Arms Co 44 Cal New Orleans Ace
CVA 45 Cal Derringer               TC Renegade 54cal                 Navy Arms Co. Pietta 12 gauge double
Pedersoli 12 gauge double        Traditions Crockett 32 cal        2 Traditions Mountain Rifles 50 cal
Pietta 1851 Conf Navy 44
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   January 4th 2017, 7:32 pm

:rtup  you'll enjoy them. They are a lot of fun to build and better yet, now that you are building the kit, you can make it a whole lot more beautiful than the factory can.
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   January 4th 2017, 7:39 pm

Ive built over 20 kits in the last 30 years or so. I never get tired of building them several Ive built for kin and some for friends , sold a few. Hopefully I can still manage to build several more before I get too old .

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CVA 50 cal Mountain Rifle         Pedersoli Quigley 45/70          Pedratti  45/90  sharps                             
CVA 50 cal Mountain Pistol        Pedersoli Quigley 45/120        Lyman Great Plains 54 cal Flintlock
2 CVA 45 cal  Kentucky Rifles    Pedersoli Kodiak Safari 72 cal  Pietta 1858 Remington New Army 44 cal
Cabelas 58 cal Hawken             Colt Navy 36 cal                     Pietta 1863 Remington pocket rev 31 cal
Pedersoli Kodiak 58 cal             CVA 58 Cal. Mountain Rifle      Classic Arms Co 44 Cal New Orleans Ace
CVA 45 Cal Derringer               TC Renegade 54cal                 Navy Arms Co. Pietta 12 gauge double
Pedersoli 12 gauge double        Traditions Crockett 32 cal        2 Traditions Mountain Rifles 50 cal
Pietta 1851 Conf Navy 44
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   January 8th 2017, 6:04 am

Got a question a little off topic but...I have an older CVA MR in 50 cal in need of a new stock, would everything basically drop-in to one of these new stocks?
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   January 8th 2017, 6:20 am

@mark1945 wrote:
Midway Has these Mountain rifles in kit on clearance for 252.75 not a bad price at all . 
Dang it...I just jumped over to Midway and was going to buy one when I read this but they are back to 489.99. Oh well.
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   January 8th 2017, 10:39 am

They went kind of fast I got mine ordered and by the next day they were out at that price ,sale didn't last long. I checked my CVA Mountian rifle and see no way it would be able to swap out stocks without some serious wood work and lots of filler.

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CVA 50 cal Mountain Rifle         Pedersoli Quigley 45/70          Pedratti  45/90  sharps                             
CVA 50 cal Mountain Pistol        Pedersoli Quigley 45/120        Lyman Great Plains 54 cal Flintlock
2 CVA 45 cal  Kentucky Rifles    Pedersoli Kodiak Safari 72 cal  Pietta 1858 Remington New Army 44 cal
Cabelas 58 cal Hawken             Colt Navy 36 cal                     Pietta 1863 Remington pocket rev 31 cal
Pedersoli Kodiak 58 cal             CVA 58 Cal. Mountain Rifle      Classic Arms Co 44 Cal New Orleans Ace
CVA 45 Cal Derringer               TC Renegade 54cal                 Navy Arms Co. Pietta 12 gauge double
Pedersoli 12 gauge double        Traditions Crockett 32 cal        2 Traditions Mountain Rifles 50 cal
Pietta 1851 Conf Navy 44
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   April 26th 2017, 3:11 pm

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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   April 26th 2017, 5:01 pm

Quote :
Lifetime Warranty

Sounds like they must have learned their lesson.

I bought (and loved!) one of their Crockett 32 caliber rifles about a dozen years back. A year and a month later the lock blew its cookies and I sent it back.  They said it was a month out of warranty and wanted to sell me a replacement lock for about half the price of the original rifle.

I was so leaked off I stood the Crockett in the corner and it remains there today.  I'm still waiting for a replacement lock, AFTER which I'll start buying their products again.
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PostSubject: Re: Review: Traditions Mountain Rifle - Percussion   April 29th 2017, 7:16 pm

I liked the review, very professional!

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