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Palehorse



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PostSubject: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 6:26 pm

I got this out of the safe this evening while I was putting away turkey season.


It was a Christmas gift from my wife in 2003, so there is no question that I will keep it.  However, it has a couple of nagging problems that have relegated it to the corner of the safe.

1.  The Lock

When new, at half cock would come to rest ~1/8 above the seated cap.  When tested tonight, it covered the nipple at half cock, barely enough room for a cap (I did not try to seat one.)  I am not inclined to make use of an obviously deteriorated lock.

Are there any repair or replacement options?

2.  Accuracy

I blame the bastard 1:48 twist.  It looks great at 50 yards, and at 100 practical accuracy is gone.  Not that the .535 RB has much KE left at that point for hunting, but my former 1:72 gun was giving me 2-3 groups at 100 yards, and the confidence to take a shot beyond at least beyond 50.

I think there used to be green mountain drop-in (maybe fitting at the patent breech hook) PRB barrels for the Investarms guns, but I did not find any doing a cursory search.  Have they stopped making them?
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Kentucky Colonel
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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 6:46 pm

Nice pic! 

I missed seeing the make and calibre? 
I assume the lock is original to the gun?

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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 6:52 pm

Well shoot, it looks like a good clean rifle to me.

Sounds like you need a TC style nipple thats shorter in length so you can keep the hammer on half cock while capped.

I'd take the lock out of the stock and give it a good scrubbing in hot soapy water with an old tooth brush, dry it and give it a light spray of gun oil, which ever you have on hand.

With that lock out of the stock, put it on half cock and reinstall it into the stock. Hammer still is the same position? Normally the hammer is concave and allows plenty of room to spare.

I'd suggest a .530" ball, 70-80-90gr 2fg Goex, .018"+ patch and swab between shots to remove the fouling.

My dad has a cabelas hawken which is basically the same model as yours and it has no problem with accuracy out to 100 yards.

KE is something centerfire/modern shooters worry about. With round ball its simple. Drill a big ass hole through the lungs and its not going far.

GM did indeed stop making barrels for these rifles, along with TC barrels.

I don't think anything is wrong with the barrel, just technique and sorting some issues out.

Check the tang screws, if they are loose, that are accuracy killers beyond believe.
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Palehorse



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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 7:13 pm

Kentucky Colonel:

Lyman Trade Rifle, 54 caliber.

All is original, except for the following:

- The nipple was replaced in 2010 with a nipple from Lyman.
- One of the screws in the underlug went missing, and Lyman send me a handful of replacements, of which one has been used. 
- The Lyman Receiver sight, and the rear sight dovetail blank were added about 4 years ago.

I used the rifle extensively, hunting with it annually to around 2007.  The lock was always irritating in that there was not enough clearance to cap/decap without full cocking or holding the hammer back.  I was told by Lyman CS at the time, that the ~1/8 clearance was acceptable.

Since 2007, it has been in the field 3 or 4 times, and to the range once or twice a year.

FrontierGander:

I have been shooting a 535 Hornady, a .018" pillow ticking spit patch (prelubed with homemade moosemilk and left out to dry), over 100 gr GOEX 2F.  Before that I was using 70 gr of Swiss 3F.

I sometime with I had asked for the Cabelas Hawken.  I liked the fact that it had the set trigger as I recall.

My shots are curving or knuckling, fading off to the left at 100 yards and off the target at 150, even though they are centered at 25-50.  Maybe the load is too hot for the faster twist?
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BigAl52
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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 7:15 pm

Lyman Trade Rifle. I have one in 54 caliber and I really like it. But Im told that they need about 150 to 200 rounds down the pipe before they perform like your expecting.  Mine seems to shoot well with 90 gr of 1f swiss. Im using that because I have about 8 lbs of it left over from shooting BPCR. Mine is 54 caliber. Al

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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 7:21 pm

I'd say its the patch lube. Moose Milk normally is a good wet lube but once it dries out, the patches just shred up or get blown out in the center. I had good luck with MM in the past, but it wanted a nice wet patch in order to be useful.

1/8" of clearance on half cock sounds about right, its probably more than that IMO.

Looks like .635" OAL of the nipple is about right.
https://www.trackofthewolf.com/List/Item.aspx/159/1/RLP-S

You can always put the nipple in a drill chuck and use a file while its spinning and remove some material until a percussion cap fits safely under the hammer at half cock.
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Palehorse



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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 7:42 pm

A picture is worth a thousand words.

1/8" clearance was new, and for some time after that.  Since 2014 it has steadily deteriorated now, at half cock, looks like this:
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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 8:32 pm

Yeah I'd be pulling that lock and taking a look at the sear or tumbler. Possibly a broken part.
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Palehorse



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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 8:48 pm

FrontierGander:

The tiniest bit of the end of the sear seems to have worn/broken. Sad
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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 9:12 pm

Ahhhh that explains it. Have you looked into an l&r replacement lock? Dixons muzzleloading I know used to handle lyman repairs/warranty.
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Palehorse



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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 23rd 2016, 9:32 pm

An L&R looks to be around $130+, and Lyman $125+.  Lyman shows the sear as an orderable part, but I do not really fancy taking the lock apart, much less putting back together and 'owning' the result.

I will try contacting Dixon's.

Thanks for all the ideas.
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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 24th 2016, 10:15 am

I bought an identical rifle in the late '80s. It shot great, but accuracy deteriorated after a few years and I sold it in the '90s. I tried different loads and bullets, but I don't remember checking the tang screw.
Bought it new for $149 and sold it for $75. Never owned another Lyman.
I can understand how the tang screw could have become loose. It kicked pretty severely with a 425gr bullet and 100gr of powder.

   -Joe
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Palehorse



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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 25th 2016, 11:40 am

Dixon told me to ship them the lock and they would replace the sear and make it sound.
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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 25th 2016, 12:16 pm

:rtup glad they are going to fix it!
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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 25th 2016, 1:39 pm

@Palehorse wrote:
Dixon told me to ship them the lock and they would replace the sear and make it sound.

That's great news! I love it when businesses take care of us customers like we meant 
something to them.

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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   April 25th 2016, 10:10 pm

Happy, you can get it fixed.
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Hanshi



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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   May 24th 2016, 3:26 pm

The only rifles I've seen that went sour after a couple-three years of steady shooting were rifles with shallow rifling.  There is nothing with a 1-48" twist that will prove inaccurate, as long as it has sufficiently deep rifling.  By "sufficiently deep" I'm referring to at least .006" deep or more.  And I also believe the lock has a wear or chip problem on the 1/2 cock notch.
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Palehorse



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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   May 25th 2016, 10:11 pm

Dixon's replaced the entire lock.
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Palehorse



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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   May 25th 2016, 10:24 pm

After

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Hanshi



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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   May 26th 2016, 2:03 pm

I really hate to retire any good gun.  I'll try to fix the problem; and if it can't be fixed it will become a wall hanger.  Otherwise it gets freshened up and gets used.
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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   May 26th 2016, 4:47 pm

Success? Or, still not happy?

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Palehorse



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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   May 26th 2016, 10:13 pm

Success!  And I am still not happy Wink
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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   May 27th 2016, 9:45 am

That's how my Lyman GPR caplock looks as well.  Sort of annoying that I have to go to full cock to cap it, then pull the trigger and ease it down to 1/2 cock for stalking or sitting etc.  I plan to upgrade my gun at some point to an L&R lock and be done with it.
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PostSubject: Re: Upgrade or retire it?   June 4th 2016, 6:45 am

@Palehorse wrote:
I do not really fancy taking the lock apart, much less putting back together and 'owning' the result.

Trust me, disassembly of a lock is not a difficult task.  Everyone who shoots a muzzleloading rifle should know how to disassemble their lock.  You will need two tools, a main spring clamp and a set of gun screwdrivers.  Someone may try to tell you to remove your main spring with a set of vise grips.  Don't, you can damage your main spring.  Don't use regular screw drivers to work on your gun.  Gun screws are different from regular screws in that they have parallel sides in the screw slots.  If you use regular screw drivers on your gun, you will booger up the screws.  Both tools are not all that expensive and you should have both on hand.  Here is a pretty good tutorial on how to disassemble your lock.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=di4VhHeUxgo  Besides, you live in Indiana which is one of the Meccas of muzzleloading.  There is bound to be a muzzleloading club in your area and those members will be glad to give you all the help you need.  I used to live in Seymour, IN and there were three muzzleloading clubs not far from there.  I am an Honorary Life Member of The Fish Creek Long Rifles muzzlerloading club in North Vernon, IN.

As far as getting better accuracy from your rifle, first I highly recommend getting a copy of Dutch Schoultz accuracy system.  Go to www.blackpowderrifleaccuracy.com and order as copy of his system.  It's only $20 and it will be the best $20 you will ever spend on your muzzleloading hobby.  Next, 1:48 is a traditional twist rate and has been in use for many years.  Many of the original Hawken rifles had the 1:48 twist rate.  You are likely over loading your rifle and causing the ball to travel through the bore too fast to properly grip the rifling.  This causes an odd spin to the ball resulting in poor accuracy.  You will find that a charge of 3f powder ranging anywhere from 50 to 80 grains will do all that you ask of it in a hunting situation out to 100 yards.  Use a good patch.  I have found that for most of my rifles a patch made of 100% cotton drill is perfect.  I buy my cotton drill from JoAnn's fabrics.  Ask them for 100% cotton drill that is used for making pockets.  It measures about .015 inches.  As for lube, you might try using something that is both cheap and very good and that is plain old olive oil.  Just moisten your patches with it, you don't want them too wet.  Read Dutch Schoults accuracy system concerning how to lube your patches.  I can't recommend his system too highly.  It is an excellent investment.
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