Author Topic: False muzzle rifle  (Read 958 times)

Offline lexington1

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False muzzle rifle
« on: December 02, 2021, 06:25:16 PM »
I have a William Billinghurst rifle that I want to get into shooting condition. The bore is shot, so I am going to have it rebored. Right now it's a .421 across the lands. Does anyone have experience shooting these guns? What would be a good bore/ load combo with paper patched bullets? I'm thinking around .44-.45 size, but I can get it bored any size at this point. Also Albert my post was removed from this board last time, and I didn't save your information. If you could send me information concerning your rifle I might still be interested.


Offline smokinbuck

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #1 on: December 02, 2021, 06:33:35 PM »
Lex,
Looks to be an interesting project, Billinghurst created some of the best. I think that as to caliber and twist I would talk with Bob Hoyt or Ed Rayl, either of them could give you the proper advice or direct you to someone who could. Not sure if your. question regarding a rifle was directed to me or elsewhere. What rifle are you referring to having interest in?
Mark
Mark

Offline lexington1

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #2 on: December 02, 2021, 06:37:05 PM »
Albert mentioned that might have a rifle he was going to sell, but I didn't save his info before the post was removed. I will definately check out those two guys, Thanks!

Offline Scota4570

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #3 on: December 02, 2021, 07:52:32 PM »
That is a great find. 

The Muzzleloading Caplock Rifle by Ned Roberts has significant information on these rifles. 

The barrel will need to be rebored with the false muzzle in place.  The loading taper in the false muzzle needs to be done correctly.  It may have been made for paper cross patches or naked lead bullets.  Harry Pope made these barrels with a choke.  It will not be a $100 ream and rifle job that might be done on a patched ball or center fire barrel.  If it were mine I'd explore getting it rifle with Pope style rifling and having a custom mold made by Accurate Molds. 

Offline lexington1

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #4 on: December 02, 2021, 08:17:27 PM »
That is great advice. I would like to get this thing as true to original as I can. It's ashame that the bore has a few badly pitted spots becasue the rifling looked beautiful in this. It has very shallow grooves. The scope is original, I believe, but has been dropped or hit on something and the glass broken out on one end. I'm thinking of having MVA make a long scope for it.

Offline Daryl

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #5 on: December 02, 2021, 09:44:36 PM »
There are some 3' long scopes on the market, but nothing with this narrow a tube (slightly larger) with better optics. of course.

I'd go with a .450" bore & .456" groove - likely 18" twist, wide grooves, about 2x land width.

Reason is easier access to bullet mould size range that will work (after sizing), such as a .457/8" sized and lubed bullet, then sized in
standard .452" sizer die, or perhaps that die lapped out to .454". Lee will actually make you bullet sizing dies that fit standard presses.
A phone call is needed as this "custom" work is not listed on their web site.
If bullets are trued and lubed first, then can be quite reduced in size without ANY damage to their integrity, however the condensing of
the material will show on target as a plus.
Just a suggestion to promote discourse.
Daryl

"a gun without hammers is like a spaniel without ears" King George V

Offline lexington1

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2021, 10:29:44 PM »
Thanks Daryl. That is great information.  What type of bullets are you using for this load? Are they cut for lube, or are they just plain, like the paper patched bullets? Do you know if anyone makes a type of mount that attaches to the wrist area like this one would have had originally? The mount that is on this one is just to hold the scope in for display. It's not even close to fitting.

Offline Daryl

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #7 on: December 03, 2021, 08:05:39 AM »
With the 18" twist, I would look to a decently long bodied, grooved, like a Lovern design, short nose, 5 to 7 grooves.
For powder, likely 70 to 90gr., whatever the gun demanded.  At some point, the obturation of the bullet will be perfect
and the bullet will be accurate and shoot cleanly, without leading due to gas-cutting blow-by.
No, all the long scopes made for the long range shooters, are barrel mounted, seems to me.  You may have to make up
a mount that duplicates the one on your rifle.
NOE Bullet Moulds has some lighter weight .454" bullets, but most of those designs are not for black powder. Black Powder
grease grooves are usually larger and square in shape, as-with the Lyman #457125 mould, with 4 square grease grooves.
That is the round nose in this picture. The pointed bullet is the Schmitzer bullet, designed for silhouette shooting. It has 3
square grooves.
I've never cast these in a soft alloy, so I don't know the size they would cast with suitable alloy.
You can click on the picture a couple times to enlarge it.
Now, Lyman did make a .451" Lovern Design, short nose lots of square grooves for the Parker Hale Volunteer rifle, that might be a good one.
It would have to be bumped, maybe, but I don't know what size it actually cast.  It was labeled as Lyman #451112 (275gr. to 485gr.) or #451114
(450gr.), I think. Whether they are still made today, I don't know.  I would check NOE, Buffalo Arms, NEI and anyone else you can think of, even Lee,
except theirs have smokeless powder lube grooves. I think a long bearing surface bullet will be best, as nose riding designs are critical of nose diameter
in how well they shoot.


« Last Edit: December 03, 2021, 08:14:35 AM by Daryl »
Daryl

"a gun without hammers is like a spaniel without ears" King George V

Offline Daryl

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #8 on: December 03, 2021, 08:28:09 AM »
Here are what NOE offers in .459".
It comes in gas check and plain base of which they have 3 in stock.

https://noebulletmolds.com/site/product-category/458-460/459-500-rn-cb6/




Thus, in soft alloy, they will be closer to .457", thus sized and lubed in a .457" sizer, then reduced in a smaller die to about .002" to .003" larger than the bore diameter, I suspect.
Daryl

"a gun without hammers is like a spaniel without ears" King George V

Offline snapper

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #9 on: December 03, 2021, 04:01:40 PM »
Once it gets rifled you might have to go to a bigger or smaller dia. mold.   Custom mold makers can make you most anything you want, they are do it all the time.   I always recommend a bit larger mold and like Daryl is saying you can size the bullets down some.

For my .451 Alex Henry double rifle I am having to use a bullet that is a few thousands bigger then my buddy with the same rifle made years apart  I just borrowed his mold for a paper patch bullet and I dont have to size the bullets, however he does.

The bullets we are shooting our of these ML are fairly short when it comes to a .451 bullet.   My buddy fitted the mold with removable stem to make them hollow points.  He has two different stems that are used to change the bullet weights.   I am using the lighter bullet that checks in at 287 grains.   With 75 grains of 2f swiss they operate well.   These are more of a 100 yard or less rifles.

The 75 grains of powder and 287 grain bullets are much more friendly on my shoulder.

Good luck with your project it is a very nice rifle.

Fleener

My taste are simple:  I am easily satisfied with the best.  Winston Churchill

Offline lexington1

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #10 on: December 03, 2021, 06:33:53 PM »
Thank you so much. This is a a lot of great information and I really appreciate it. I will send the barrel off to have rebored today. I am having the scope built for it too. I probably will have to make a base mount for the rear of the scope.

I have been shooting round balls since the mid 70's, but this venture into slug shooting is completely foreign to me. It sounds like fun!

Now to find a mold or two and a sizer and start making slugs. I also need to read Ned Roberts book again.

Offline snapper

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #11 on: December 03, 2021, 07:23:27 PM »
Before you start buying molds and sizers that you might not ever use, you might want to try some various size bullets in it to see what fits.

I dont know what these rifles shot, are they shooting 500 + grain bullets?   Or shorter lighter bullets?   

I would be happy to send you some various sized bullets and you can at least see what might or might not fit in it if you like.

Fleener
My taste are simple:  I am easily satisfied with the best.  Winston Churchill

Offline lexington1

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #12 on: December 03, 2021, 08:29:09 PM »
Thanks Snapper. Let me see what I can dig up here first. I used to shoot Sharps cartridge rifles, so I probably have some misc. bullets and molds. I certainly appreciate the offer and I might take you up on it when I get to sorting this out.

Offline snapper

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #13 on: December 03, 2021, 08:51:37 PM »
Not a problem, happy to help.

Fleener
My taste are simple:  I am easily satisfied with the best.  Winston Churchill

Offline Hungry Horse

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #14 on: December 03, 2021, 09:59:21 PM »
 Be aware, some guns marked Billinghurst are manufacture in California and were gain twist guns. They were not built by Billinghurst but rather under license.

Hungry Horse

Offline Bob Roller

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #15 on: December 03, 2021, 11:04:43 PM »
I shot an Alex Henry barreled Whitworth semi military match rifle for 11 years and used Lyman mould 451112* and I THINK Lyman makes
one 451114 which is very similar. These are grooved bulles with a short,flat nose and I got MOA groups at 100 yards using 75 grains of DuPont or Curtis&Harvey 3fg.No disc or lubed wad.Sizers are no problem.Look in any good industrial supply catalog and there are reamers
of every diameter.I made one last week from brass for a .450.In the mid 1990's I designed a .458 for BPCR that was .458 with two front bands of .450 to center it on the lands.It can be sized to .450 if needed.Dixie Gun Works bought the design for it and a 40 caliber version.
  I agree 101% with Daryl on the Pope style rifling.It was a smaller bore 8 groove version of the 7 groove Alex Henry.It IS a very well proven design for lubricated bullets.
Keep us all in the loop on this interesting rifle.
*451112 now long discontinued but the later 451114 is very close.
Bob Roller


Offline Daryl

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Re: False muzzle rifle
« Reply #16 on: December 04, 2021, 02:48:07 AM »
Back in the mid 1070's, I made a trip to Kalispel Montana to visit with and buy some barrels from Les Bauska and to meet and chat with 'Old John" Buhimller.
I didn't get to visit John as he has just fallen down and was not well. I did get to speak to him on the phone, mostly about his long time friend and at that time,
mine,  Lester H. & Irene Hawkes of Wallcot road, B.C.
One of the barrels I bought from Les Bauska, was a .50, with about .006" rifling, but with a 36" ROT.  I made a lead lap and lapped that barrel a bit, filed the flats
more true (those octagonal Bauska barrels were pretty crude), breeched it up - perhaps with a TC breech plug (don't remember) bought an old adjustable Lyman
.510" HB mould that cast from 350 to 550gr. bullets.  At 400gr., they were shorter than the TC Maxiball by about .050". The maxiball shot into 2" at 100yards in that
barrel, so I figured the Lyman bullet might do as well.  I cut a piece of the barrel about 2 1/2" long & made a die (tapered mouth) that fit up against the inside top of
my Rockchucker press and with a plunger on the ram, I could shove these cast and hand-lubed(Crisco) bullets through the die to make them a mechanical fit to the
new barrel.  The flambeau loading trays had 2 sizes of ctg. holding pockets. I cut the bottom of the larger ones out to 7/16", so a lubed .50 cal bullet could be pushed
into the 'tray' and used as a loading block. I no longer remember the powder charge that worked best, but those bullet would stack 5 into an inch, centre to centre. As
I was using a 7/16" fiberglass rod for loading them, with no muzzle protection, I had to cut off 1/8" and re-crown the muzzle, every 200 or so shots, at the time the groups
opened up to 2". I had the TC Tang mounted aperture, with a Lyman aperture front sight.  I used an aperture in it for group shooting, but the post for turkey shoots. It
was a deadly rifle, with it's "mechanically" fitted bullets.
I've mentioned this story, only to show that with a bit of thinking & planning, things we never though possible are quite achievable.
« Last Edit: December 05, 2021, 01:10:30 AM by Daryl »
Daryl

"a gun without hammers is like a spaniel without ears" King George V