Author Topic: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates  (Read 9783 times)

Iktomi

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$@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« on: May 09, 2018, 07:24:24 PM »
I recently worked over my GPR .54 w/PRB barrel. Stripped the browning off and did a scrubbed back oxpho blue finish on the barrel and furniture. I have not shot the rifle much the last couple years, took it to the range Sunday afternoon to re-zero after removing and then reinstalling sights during the refinishing. I'm not particularly recoil sensitive, but shooting this from the bench just walloped the $#*! out of me. So much so that after 30 rounds or so I was noticeably flinching. It hurt, and I wasn't shooting monster loads either, just my two pet loads for this rifle, 85 of 3F and 105 of 2F. My shoulder has significant bruising, and I had plans to go shoot again this Friday but I'm not sure my shoulder is up to it. I have to attribute this to the narrow, deep curved and pointy butt on this and other Hawken-type rifles. Never really bothered me in the past, but I sure am not liking that butt design now. Miserable design IMO.

Offline rich pierce

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #1 on: May 09, 2018, 07:29:36 PM »
Rick, youíre not alone.  Iíve heard and tried the upper arm hold and everything else and have never found a narrow, deeply curved buttplate comfortable with moderate recoil.
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Iktomi

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2018, 08:06:04 PM »

Iktomi

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2018, 08:19:18 PM »
 The only variable that was different with this session was the bench shooting. This was my first trip to this range in a long long time. They do *not* allow offhand on the rifle range, all shooting MUST be from the bench, and they weren't particularly well fitting benches for me. I kinda had to crawl forward over the table to get set up. I'm more accustomed to shooting in a more natural fashion....offhand, sitting, shooting sticks or resting up against a tree or the like. I was sort of forced in to using this range though, for years I would shoot at a friend's rural property north of town. Great place, safe and with distances up to 450 yards. However, there is a winery across the road, and new owners have a new tasting room and host a bunch of events for the whine and cheeserat crowd. They complained, even though our shooting is perfectly legal and safe, and they basically threatened to make life miserable for my friend if we didn't stop.

Offline Darkhorse

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2018, 08:53:22 PM »
I've shot several hundred rounds through my old GPR with the same results. Then an old timer told me I should be shooting with the butt plate on the bicep, not the shoulder. All I can say is it worked for me. The hardest part was training myself to place it in the right spot every time.
Looking at your photo I was placing my butt plate 3 to 4 inches to the right of your location right on the bicep. Another thing for off the bench, or X sticks is I always place at least a finger, or a 2 finger hold right at the forward support position to keep barrel rise to the minimum. And help insure the recoil is straight back.
I was a doubter  but tried it anyway. Was glad I did. Try it yourself and see. It can't hurt anything.
I'd also drop the powder charge until the problem is worked out. 85 grains of 3f is a snappy load and 105 grains of 2f can hurt, I know from experience.
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Iktomi

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2018, 09:07:17 PM »
I've shot several hundred rounds through my old GPR with the same results. Then an old timer told me I should be shooting with the butt plate on the bicep, not the shoulder. All I can say is it worked for me. The hardest part was training myself to place it in the right spot every time.
Looking at your photo I was placing my butt plate 3 to 4 inches to the right of your location right on the bicep. Another thing for off the bench, or X sticks is I always place at least a finger, or a 2 finger hold right at the forward support position to keep barrel rise to the minimum. And help insure the recoil is straight back.
I was a doubter  but tried it anyway. Was glad I did. Try it yourself and see. It can't hurt anything.
I'd also drop the powder charge until the problem is worked out. 85 grains of 3f is a snappy load and 105 grains of 2f can hurt, I know from experience.


 That'll take some getting used to but I'll give it a try. Rather reluctant to drop charge, these are both very accurate, they shoot better than anything else I've worked up in this rifle and they are intended for elk which is my primary use for this gun. Guess I'll have to work up a lighter plinking load for the time being. I've shot these loads all day long offhand and on sticks etc and didn't have this problem. Heck, I have an 8 1/2 lb. 338. Win mag that doesn't smack me around like this did the other day  :o

 Thanks for the tips!

Offline stubshaft

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2018, 10:25:19 PM »
The upper arm hold may feel odd at first and does take some getting used to.  The first time I tried it I thought it would never work for me but after a couple of range sessions it was second nature.
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Offline Joe S.

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2018, 10:29:51 PM »
Ouch,ain't made hamburger out of my shoulder like that in a long,long time and that was with some modern tyranasauraus rifles.Try the different hold,no fun coming home from the range like that.You also don't want that flinch your already talking about setting in to deep along with that butt plate.

Offline smylee grouch

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2018, 11:07:37 PM »
I hold all my heavy hitters in-between the bicep and shoulder and it seems to help me. Your mileage may vary.

Offline Sharpsman

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #9 on: May 09, 2018, 11:32:06 PM »
Get a PAST recoil pad.....and solve the problem!! :o
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Offline WadePatton

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2018, 01:53:52 AM »
Bench or Prone shooting are the worst for recoil. 

To reduce it at the bench I made a drag bag many many moons ago before special holding fixtures and PAST padding and alla that stuff.  That was the most useful bag of shot I ever owned. (I used to shoot Loudus MagnaBoomers mostly.)

BUT then I thought about how recoil is rarely an issue standing up--so I make my shooting position (don't have fixed setup presently) for testing as TALL as I can make it to give me the stability and support of a bench and being seated, but to keep from hunkering down all behind the gun trapping it against all the upper body mass.  With the upper body more vertical, it can sway with the recoil much easier. 

Over-explained?    Anyhoo, that's what works for me, ergonomic dynamicals.  Try it sometime.   ;)
« Last Edit: May 10, 2018, 01:55:50 AM by WadePatton »
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Iktomi

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2018, 02:12:58 AM »
Bench or Prone shooting are the worst for recoil. 

To reduce it at the bench I made a drag bag many many moons ago before special holding fixtures and PAST padding and alla that stuff.  That was the most useful bag of shot I ever owned. (I used to shoot Loudus MagnaBoomers mostly.)

BUT then I thought about how recoil is rarely an issue standing up--so I make my shooting position (don't have fixed setup presently) for testing as TALL as I can make it to give me the stability and support of a bench and being seated, but to keep from hunkering down all behind the gun trapping it against all the upper body mass.  With the upper body more vertical, it can sway with the recoil much easier. 

Over-explained?    Anyhoo, that's what works for me, ergonomic dynamicals.  Try it sometime.   ;)

 I agree that offhand is much more tolerable for the reasons you mentioned. The fact the bench was ill-fitting for me only made things worse.If I use those benches again I'll be better equipped to get myself more vertical behind the rifle. That should help quite a bit. Did some trials with shouldering the rifle a few minutes ago. Moving it out just inside my bicep doesn't feel as odd as I thought it would, but d@#!, my shoulder is a wee sore, don't think I'll shoot Friday  :P
« Last Edit: May 10, 2018, 02:14:55 AM by Iktomi »

Offline Elnathan

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2018, 04:47:27 AM »
This was my first trip to this range in a long long time. They do *not* allow offhand on the rifle range, all shooting MUST be from the bench, and they weren't particularly well fitting benches for me. I kinda had to crawl forward over the table to get set up. I'm more accustomed to shooting in a more natural fashion....offhand, sitting, shooting sticks or resting up against a tree or the like.

Could you make a set of sticks  from which to shoot off the bench? Technically you'd still be shooting from the bench, but you could make them high enough so you could sit up straight... :P

I have a different but similar problem. The public range closest to me installed these big metal boxes with some sort of insulation in front of the benches. Apparently some folks from California decided to move to the Blue Ridge right next to a game land and shooting range, and were appalled to discover that we shoot guns around here. They complained to the State loudly and long enough that the authorities installed these monstrosities in an effort to dampen the noise. Personally, I think they make the noise worse, and require a lot of contortion to shoot through. Since the pistol stalls are right on the same range I just shoot offhand over there and no one has objected yet, though.
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Iktomi

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #13 on: May 10, 2018, 05:14:37 AM »
This was my first trip to this range in a long long time. They do *not* allow offhand on the rifle range, all shooting MUST be from the bench, and they weren't particularly well fitting benches for me. I kinda had to crawl forward over the table to get set up. I'm more accustomed to shooting in a more natural fashion....offhand, sitting, shooting sticks or resting up against a tree or the like.

Could you make a set of sticks  from which to shoot off the bench? Technically you'd still be shooting from the bench, but you could make them high enough so you could sit up straight... :P

I have a different but similar problem. The public range closest to me installed these big metal boxes with some sort of insulation in front of the benches. Apparently some folks from California decided to move to the Blue Ridge right next to a game land and shooting range, and were appalled to discover that we shoot guns around here. They complained to the State loudly and long enough that the authorities installed these monstrosities in an effort to dampen the noise. Personally, I think they make the noise worse, and require a lot of contortion to shoot through. Since the pistol stalls are right on the same range I just shoot offhand over there and no one has objected yet, though.

 I was just out back down in the creek scouting out some sticks to make a shorty set for the bench  ;)

 ETA: I can shoot offhand on the pistol range, but it is only 25 yards.
« Last Edit: May 10, 2018, 05:15:51 AM by Iktomi »

Offline rollingb

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #14 on: May 10, 2018, 05:56:26 AM »
I've shot several hundred rounds through my old GPR with the same results. Then an old timer told me I should be shooting with the butt plate on the bicep, not the shoulder. All I can say is it worked for me. The hardest part was training myself to place it in the right spot every time.
Looking at your photo I was placing my butt plate 3 to 4 inches to the right of your location right on the bicep. Another thing for off the bench, or X sticks is I always place at least a finger, or a 2 finger hold right at the forward support position to keep barrel rise to the minimum. And help insure the recoil is straight back.
I was a doubter  but tried it anyway. Was glad I did. Try it yourself and see. It can't hurt anything.
I'd also drop the powder charge until the problem is worked out. 85 grains of 3f is a snappy load and 105 grains of 2f can hurt, I know from experience.


 That'll take some getting used to but I'll give it a try. Rather reluctant to drop charge, these are both very accurate, they shoot better than anything else I've worked up in this rifle and they are intended for elk which is my primary use for this gun. Guess I'll have to work up a lighter plinking load for the time being. I've shot these loads all day long offhand and on sticks etc and didn't have this problem. Heck, I have an 8 1/2 lb. 338. Win mag that doesn't smack me around like this did the other day  :o

 Thanks for the tips!
Are you shooting round balls, or conicals?

During the 70's and 80's, I shot literally thousands of roundball loads (enough to go through 20-25 lbs. of powder per year), I shot that rifle at least several times a week, and used it for competition, and hunting throughout the year.
My .54 GPR loved 90 grs. of Goex 2F behind a patched .530 round ball, and was my "go to" gun for EVERYTHING (elk, caribou, deer, coyotes, bear, and antelope).

20+ years of shooting a Lyman GPR, and I never once noticed any recoil.  :o

When I lived in Alaska, I owned, both, a .338 WM and a .375 HH, now those things had some recoil but we don't talk about those types of guns here.
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Iktomi

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #15 on: May 10, 2018, 07:27:50 AM »

Are you shooting round balls, or conicals?

During the 70's and 80's, I shot literally thousands of roundball loads (enough to go through 20-25 lbs. of powder per year), I shot that rifle at least several times a week, and used it for competition, and hunting throughout the year.
My .54 GPR loved 90 grs. of Goex 2F behind a patched .530 round ball, and was my "go to" gun for EVERYTHING (elk, caribou, deer, coyotes, bear, and antelope).

20+ years of shooting a Lyman GPR, and I never once noticed any recoil.  :o

When I lived in Alaska, I owned, both, a .338 WM and a .375 HH, now those things had some recoil but we don't talk about those types of guns here.

 Shooting PRB. I have at least 1500 shots through this rifle over the last several years, and I';ve never had a problem. I put it down to the screwed up position I was forced to use the other day coupled with that narrow, curved and pointy buttplate. I've never had my shoulder bruised up by any firearm until now and a .54 round ball rifle is modest in recoil compared to a couple of the modern rifles I own and shoot.

Offline rollingb

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #16 on: May 10, 2018, 07:43:53 AM »

Are you shooting round balls, or conicals?

During the 70's and 80's, I shot literally thousands of roundball loads (enough to go through 20-25 lbs. of powder per year), I shot that rifle at least several times a week, and used it for competition, and hunting throughout the year.
My .54 GPR loved 90 grs. of Goex 2F behind a patched .530 round ball, and was my "go to" gun for EVERYTHING (elk, caribou, deer, coyotes, bear, and antelope).

20+ years of shooting a Lyman GPR, and I never once noticed any recoil.  :o

When I lived in Alaska, I owned, both, a .338 WM and a .375 HH, now those things had some recoil but we don't talk about those types of guns here.

 Shooting PRB. I have at least 1500 shots through this rifle over the last several years, and I';ve never had a problem. I put it down to the screwed up position I was forced to use the other day coupled with that narrow, curved and pointy buttplate. I've never had my shoulder bruised up by any firearm until now and a .54 round ball rifle is modest in recoil compared to a couple of the modern rifles I own and shoot.
Are you allowed to bring your own rest, or sand bags, to use on their bench?
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Offline PPatch

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #17 on: May 10, 2018, 03:16:51 PM »
I shoot all of the deeply curved style with the buttplate held between the shoulder and bicep.  Never on the shoulder and never on the bicep. Between. The felt recoil is minimal and I have never experienced bruising even with 120 grain loads.

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Iktomi

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #18 on: May 10, 2018, 04:40:07 PM »

Are you allowed to bring your own rest, or sand bags, to use on their bench?

 Yeah, I am. I wasn't aware of the procedures at this range and wasn't well prepared. I was using my small range box as a rest but it wasn't near tall enough. I'll be better situated next time I go out there.

Offline hudson

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #19 on: May 10, 2018, 04:44:29 PM »
I had a similar problem with Lymanís version of the Hawkens, still have a tattoo from that rifle. I am not normally recoil sensitive but that little but plate was a problem. Moved it off the shoulder no more problem, that rifle did find a new home even though accuracy was good.

Leantoo54

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #20 on: May 10, 2018, 05:57:25 PM »
One thing you can do is bring a soft knee pad like you use for gardening.  Kneel down behind the shooting bench.  This allows you to maintain an upright shooting posture close to the same position as standing and allows your body to recoil back with the shot.  You can also buy a strap on recoil pad.  I use one for black powder cartridge.  Launching 535 grain lead bullets all day from a 45-70 can get tiring to the shoulder even with a heavy rifle.  The pad changes your LOP a little but is worth it for saving wear and tear on the shoulder. 

Iktomi

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #21 on: May 10, 2018, 05:57:46 PM »
I had a similar problem with Lymanís version of the Hawkens, still have a tattoo from that rifle. I am not normally recoil sensitive but that little but plate was a problem. Moved it off the shoulder no more problem, that rifle did find a new home even though accuracy was good.

 Yeah, my GPR is quite accurate, no complaints there.

Offline Bob Roller

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #22 on: May 10, 2018, 07:22:45 PM »
For a number of years I shot crescent butt plate rifles but NEVER from prone
and always between the shoulder and bicep.There is a reason the Brits made shotgun
style rifle stocks and it's called COMMON SENSE.Easy to manage even with heavy loads and
way better looking. The last crescent butt plate gun I made was a breech loader made to
look like a Carlos Gove which was styled like a muzzle loader.40-90-420 Ballard.

Bob Roller

Offline Daryl

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #23 on: May 10, 2018, 07:24:11 PM »
There is a reason the Brits made shotgun
style rifle stocks and it's called COMMON SENSE.Easy to manage even with heavy loads and
way better looking.
Bob Roller


Spot-on, old chap.
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Offline Sharpsman

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Re: $@#! Hawkens and their %$@! butt plates
« Reply #24 on: May 10, 2018, 07:36:01 PM »
I love 'em...and wouldn't trade for a blue-nosed mule!!

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