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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-09-2018, 12:05 PM Thread Starter
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Advice/opinions

I have a T.C. Hawkens flintlock. After being fairly persistent in the late season thus far, even with the artic blast, I had my first shot opportunity this morning. Here's where my question comes in. I pulled the set trigger as she was standing underneath me and as she headed away I shouldered the rifle and tried to turn her broadside. I inadvertently pulled the hair trigger unknowingly (and before I ever wanted to shoot) and missed her cleanly. Scared me good to say the least! Should I not use the set trigger at all in a hunting situation? Should I adjust the hair trigger to have a heavier pull? It was a doe for goodness sakes, I can hardly fathom if I threw in a good dose of buck fever yet... I have video of the hunt I'll try to throw in here at some point tonight or tomorrow (not that it'll help, but at least you can laugh at me )

Here is a link to the video of the premature ejection of my round ball and patch.

******Have a good one!******

Last edited by huntforfood; 01-10-2018 at 05:06 AM. Reason: added link
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-09-2018, 12:27 PM
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Don't hit the set trigger until you are ready to fire. If the circumstances don't allow this then hit the set trigger and keep your finger on the trigger guard. My experiences with TC's are the main trigger is way too heavy to use that alone reliably.

Remember, shoot straight and shoot often.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-09-2018, 12:27 PM
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A lot of guys will say to not use the set trigger when hunting.

I have a Renegade sidelock cap gun that I've hunted with a lot and I've always used the set trigger because on my gun the pull without it is excessively heavy. Once or twice I've had the opposite problem than you had; I forgot to set it and I'm squeezing and squeezing and the darn sear won't break. Missed a real nice buck in Virginia one time due to that. Fortunately for me, he came back through several hours later and I nailed him.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-09-2018, 12:27 PM
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Where you wearing Gloves ?? Gloves and set Triggers don`t agree with each other !! I would say a heavier Trigger pull would help. But, I would practice a bit with the stiffer pull....
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-09-2018, 01:03 PM
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Some (most?) set trigger assemblies have the ability to lighten the load on the set trigger, if You are so inclined. Remove it from the gun, and see if there is a leaf spring behind the triggers, laying on the bar. It pushes down on the set trigger. If there is one, relieve the pressure on it a little bit by loosening the screw that holds it to the plate. The link below (#63) shows the assembly, and what spring I am talking about.

Just don't loosen it too much, or the trigger bar will not strike the sear hard enough to release the lock tumbler.

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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-09-2018, 01:09 PM
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Or just practice shooting it with out setting it.

Once you get a feel for it, you'll be able to use it "on the fly" if/when needed.

When I hunted with my TC Renegade, and with a Lyman GPR, I practiced with both without setting the trigger, even just dry firing with a wooden "flint", to get used to the pull without the set trigger being engaged. If you know what to expect, it helps a lot.

Funny story sort of related to this....

One of the guys (now passed on) who used to hunt in the group I hunted with was funny about his flintlock and the set triggers. He'd aim carefully, then squeeeeeeeze the set trigger. Then aim carefully, and yank/flinch like crazy on the main trigger and miss by a mile most of the time.

One time on a deer, when he was squeezing that set trigger, he mistakenly got the main trigger and to everyone's surprise (probably his most of all), he killed the deer clean.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-10-2018, 05:11 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the thoughts and input. I wasn't wearing a glove on my trigger hand, so it wasn't that. I'm going to look into adjusting the trigger pull. Funny it never gave me any trouble all summer off the bench. I edited my original post to include a link to the video if anyone cares to watch. Thanks again for the replies.

******Have a good one!******
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-10-2018, 07:01 AM
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I hunt with set trigger engaged and use a leather frizzen cover. I tie a piece of fishing line to it and the trigger guard. When a shot presents itself just flick off the cover and your ready to go.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-10-2018, 07:42 AM
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I watched your vid, I thought you might have spooked the deer with the click the set trigger makes, thats why i suggested the frizzen cover and having it ready to shoot.
Looks like you just never had a shot and got excited. Looks like you would of had a shot if you backed your stand off that trail 20 yards or so and had your stand perpendicular to it. Cool video and good luck with your flintlock. I'm still working on a chronic flinch with the wooden flint dry fires tdd mentioned.
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-10-2018, 01:03 PM
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Don't feel bad. You're not alone. I've done it a few times. You set the trigger then you're not properly lined up on the deer and Blam, the gun goes off, the deer laughs and trots slowly away. You stand there feeling stupid.....It happens...you just have to teach yourself to remain calm, and if you set the trigger just remember to A keep your finger away from the trigger until you're absolutely ready to fire, and B. don't wear gloves.

And to those who say not to use the set trigger at all, I say why? Some triggers are very heavy to use by themselves. Some are heavy enough that not using the set trigger might just create the same result, a clean miss. I say use the set trigger as long as you have the time to do so, but just be careful.
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