Author Topic: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?  (Read 8099 times)

m1garand_man

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Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« on: March 12, 2018, 11:13:50 PM »
First off, hello, I'm new here and while I'm not new to black powder I am new to flintlocks. I definitely look forward to learningas much as possible from all of you.

I took my virginia flintlock rifle out again today and while shooting noticed that it was shooting five inches high at 100y. Two weeks ago it was dead on the bull at 100 and a week before that it was two inches high. My barrel is pinned into the stock and while the stok is very thin and easily flexible in the forend when the barrel is dismounted I'm starting to think that the shift I'm experiencing is due to himidity.

On a given day it will shoot in the same spot for the entire day but when I bring it out on a different day it will be in a different spot.

This time of year humidity fluctuates wildly. I have seen fluctuations between 35 and 85%

I have a hard time accepting that my stock is warping enough to flex the barrel like this but it is the only thing I can think of.

What have you guys noticed with your full stocked rifles?

Is this issue normal?

How can I correct it?

Online Stoner creek

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2018, 11:23:02 PM »
Itís more likely that the light conditions were different on the days that you shot. Itís possible that the wood could move the barrel. You would need a really skinny barrel and a pretty chunky piece of wood.
Try to make a mental note of light conditions and itís affect on your shot placement. 5 inches isnít  too terribly bad at 100 yards with open sights. Is your gun printing groups?
« Last Edit: March 12, 2018, 11:29:02 PM by Stoner creek »
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Offline rich pierce

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2018, 11:23:37 PM »
We just have to mention these things.....
Youíre sure you have been resting the gun the same way each time?
Are your underlugs slotted to allow movement with swelling and shrinkage?
What is the barrel weight or width and caliber?
Andover, Vermont

Offline Mauser06

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2018, 12:12:40 AM »
I've found resting a longrifle forend differently can throw the shot. I try to keep my shooting sticks or sand bags behind the entry pipe.


5" high with open sights isn't terrible..like was said, light conditions can play a role in sight picture. Especially with brass/silver/copper sights that are reflective.


Offline smylee grouch

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2018, 01:27:59 AM »
It happens to almost every one. On some of those days the sun will be brighter or from a slightly different angle and you could be shooting in to the sun as they say. Real bright days makes me take more front  sight and then I will shoot a little higher or towards the sun. A shadder might help solving the problem. You can make one just by wrapping some card stock around the sights for experiment purpose,s .

Offline hanshi

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2018, 01:49:24 AM »
My first thought would be the barrel lugs not being slotted enough.
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Offline Curt Lyles

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2018, 04:37:49 AM »
m1 garand man    Start off with a new can of powder you might have too many fines,try resting the barrel real close to the muzzle,pull all of your barrel pins and wrap the pin locations with masking tape,weigh your round balls and mike them also,read your patches, apply the lube different,switch lubes,pull the barrel and see how the stock reacts with no barrel in it ,if it twists a little that could be it ,wipe the bore after every third shot for a more co nsistent bore.One of these might be it.Curt
« Last Edit: March 13, 2018, 04:41:56 AM by Curt Lyles »

m1garand_man

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2018, 05:51:52 AM »
Itís more likely that the light conditions were different on the days that you shot. Itís possible that the wood could move the barrel. You would need a really skinny barrel and a pretty chunky piece of wood.
Try to make a mental note of light conditions and itís affect on your shot placement. 5 inches isnít  too terribly bad at 100 yards with open sights. Is your gun printing groups?

Irregardless of where it is shooting on a given day it always groups the same.

m1garand_man

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2018, 05:54:57 AM »
We just have to mention these things.....
Youíre sure you have been resting the gun the same way each time?
Are your underlugs slotted to allow movement with swelling and shrinkage?
What is the barrel weight or width and caliber?

I have been taking proper care to rest in the same spot everytime since I expected that to be important for accuracy.

I'm not sure what you mean about the under lugs being slotted. The stock has slots for them of course but beyond that I'm not sure what you mean.


m1garand_man

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2018, 05:59:07 AM »
m1 garand man    Start off with a new can of powder you might have too many fines,try resting the barrel real close to the muzzle,pull all of your barrel pins and wrap the pin locations with masking tape,weigh your round balls and mike them also,read your patches, apply the lube different,switch lubes,pull the barrel and see how the stock reacts with no barrel in it ,if it twists a little that could be it ,wipe the bore after every third shot for a more co nsistent bore.One of these might be it.Curt

I'll check out my powder. I forgot about that issue with fines.

I'm not sure what you mean by wrapping the pin locations. Are you talking about the barrel or the stock? I know what the pins are just not this wrapping technique.

Turtle

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2018, 11:57:01 AM »
 all good ideas. When I have had inconsistent results I have suspected that the powder in my horn sucked moisture. I now(usually) empty my horn back in the can after shooting. Anybody ever do experiments on powder moisture content and burning rate?

Offline Curt Lyles

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2018, 02:46:25 PM »
Here's a picture of what I was meaning about taping the barrel where the pins are.  All you are doing is holding the barrel to the stock while the pins are out.  If the stock is changing or binding in any way, your accuracy could suffer.

Turtle: I wouldn't transfer my powder back and forth from the can to the horn.  This could be where the fines are created in your powder, or if you are using 2F and 3F you could get things mixed up.  (I know I could anyway - I keep my horns marked with what's in them.)  This is all just my opinion, though. 



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Offline rich pierce

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2018, 03:30:35 PM »
We just have to mention these things.....
Youíre sure you have been resting the gun the same way each time?
Are your underlugs slotted to allow movement with swelling and shrinkage?
What is the barrel weight or width and caliber?

I have been taking proper care to rest in the same spot everytime since I expected that to be important for accuracy.

I'm not sure what you mean about the under lugs being slotted. The stock has slots for them of course but beyond that I'm not sure what you mean.

The hole in an underlug is often extended fore and aft by filing until it is oblong in shape. Then if the stock swells or shrinks lengthwise the pin does not exert excess pressure on the lug and therefore, the barrel.
Andover, Vermont

Offline WKevinD

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2018, 03:42:19 PM »
If your underlugs are slotted and your rest/ hold is consistent the patch and ball and seating pressure are also consistent your  humidity variable may be your powders moisture absorption.
I am mainly a hunter and casual, social target shooter so when I hear your accuracy results I'd brag and not change a thing.
The only other thing I wonder about is why you would remove the barrel from the stock? I know some here do it for cleaning but their guns are typically set up for that with barrel keys and hook breaches.

Kevin
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m1garand_man

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2018, 09:10:08 PM »
Here's a picture of what I was meaning about taping the barrel where the pins are.  All you are doing is holding the barrel to the stock while the pins are out.  If the stock is changing or binding in any way, your accuracy could suffer.

Turtle: I wouldn't transfer my powder back and forth from the can to the horn.  This could be where the fines are created in your powder, or if you are using 2F and 3F you could get things mixed up.  (I know I could anyway - I keep my horns marked with what's in them.)  This is all just my opinion, though. 



upload album

Would the purpose of doing this taping be to a certain whether or not theirs an issue during firing with the pins out?

m1garand_man

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2018, 09:11:51 PM »
If your underlugs are slotted and your rest/ hold is consistent the patch and ball and seating pressure are also consistent your  humidity variable may be your powders moisture absorption.
I am mainly a hunter and casual, social target shooter so when I hear your accuracy results I'd brag and not change a thing.
The only other thing I wonder about is why you would remove the barrel from the stock? I know some here do it for cleaning but their guns are typically set up for that with barrel keys and hook breaches.

Kevin

I have been dismounting my barrel to more easily do a quick and through clean. If I shouldn't be doing this what then is the best method to throughly clean the bore with the barrel still mounted?

m1garand_man

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #16 on: March 13, 2018, 09:14:02 PM »
Also on this slotting, how long should I make the slots? Obviously I'm not trying to go overboard and make more problems. I'm pretty experienced with files so I'm sure I can do it. I've just never worked on a gun like this. It has been mainly things like fitting hands and cylinder locks in revolvers which can be challenging enough.

Offline WKevinD

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #17 on: March 13, 2018, 09:48:34 PM »
PEACE is that glorious moment in history when everyone stands around reloading.  Thomas Jefferson

Offline hanshi

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #18 on: March 13, 2018, 10:52:42 PM »
Not that much.  I used one of those "wire saws" which are cheap, can be found at WalMart and will cut steel.  Just turn the round holes in the lugs into ovals.  Doesn't take much.  Most all of mine came with the lugs already slotted but a couple did need a bit of work.
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Offline Curt Lyles

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #19 on: March 14, 2018, 04:27:19 AM »
  Mi
     The purpose of the tape is to hold the barrel to the stock while you test fire the rifle.If its shooting like it should with out the pins then you know where your problem is.I would not be taking the barrel out when I clean my guns but if you see a reason for it that s fine.
     To clean a rifle plug the vent with a damp round toothpick ,fill the barrel with your favorite stuff (h2o),set butt of gun on padded bench with the barrel level and run the rod patch  and jag thru after you pull the toothpick out .continue till its clean then WD40 it after its dry then oil it up real good .this method is so easy i can clean 2 as quick as 1 rifle .Curt

Turtle

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #20 on: March 15, 2018, 04:15:21 AM »
 Ken Brasien (sp?) the famous barrel maker once shot a friends barrel for group without the stock because it wouldn't group in the gun. It still didn't group. He told him it had internal stresses.

m1garand_man

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #21 on: March 15, 2018, 04:32:31 PM »
The underlugs weren't slotted. They are now. That plus the new sights I'm ordering will be part of my next test range session.

I still have yet to find a cleaning method I really like that doesn't involve dismounting the barrel

Offline Dave Marsh

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #22 on: March 15, 2018, 05:20:59 PM »
I switched to this as I got tired of leaky toothpicks.  http://americanlongrifles.org/forum/index.php?topic=45793.0

Dave

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Offline Daryl

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #23 on: March 15, 2018, 08:12:10 PM »
I agree with not changing powder back and forth. Use specific powder in each horn.  I got by for years with just a flask and used nothing but 2F. Now

I have horns for each specific powder - 3F in a pair of them, one black, the other white and double in my flask and also the big horn I bought at Dixon's.

I also have two priming horns with 4F.

Dixon's 2F horn holds 1 1/2 pounds.  Perfect for a long trail walk with a big bore.


« Last Edit: March 15, 2018, 08:15:20 PM by Daryl »
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m1garand_man

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Re: Virginia rifle poi shift due to humidity?
« Reply #24 on: March 27, 2018, 08:40:02 PM »
I shot with a new sight last weekend. It is brass and twice as thick as the old one and flat faced. I did have to darken the blade in with a sharpie but it shoots exactly where I want it to fairly consistently and the sight picture is easy to see now! Thanks for the help everyone.

I do need to stop dismounting the barrel from the stock though. I'm starting to have concerns about the pin holes loosening up. I suppose I could find a way to renew their "friction" in the holes with out going up a size but still I need to find some of those magnets or something and start cleaning the way you guys all do with the barrel mounted in the stock.