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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

I've been hunting since I legally could (12). In SEPA we have late season antlerless with our slug guns, so I typically have always just grabbed my slug gun when heading out during late season. However, getting older I have a desire to hunt more north and in different areas. Also, I want to try new things (new to me). So this past Spring I picked up a great deal on a very well kept Lyman Deerstalker. It looks like a great no frills 50cal flinter. The person who sold it to me also gave me a powder horn, powder measure, ball starter, primer, powder, etc. One thing that is nice is all the tools are brass. Any who with being new to flintlocks I was hoping I could just use powerbelts and not patch and ball. At least to start. I understand I did purchase a good quality flintlock (or at think I think I did). So, if patch and ball will get me the most out of this rifle then I'll try it, but I'm sure we have other Lyman Deerstalker users out there.
What have you had success with?
Certain loads with certain rounds?
It's an older lyman so no fiberoptic sights. Are they needed. I was told the older iron sights can be a pain sometimes in darker situations.

Any advice is appreciated!
 

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I use powerbelts and they tend to fragment but I like them in black powder guns because they are easy to load. Sights are personal preference. I don't really like fiber optic sights and tend to shoot better with regular ones. Shoot your gun some. Adjust loads down for more accuracy (I use 80 of 2f).
 

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What you shoot is 1000% upto YOU...but as a rule of thumb roundballs like a slower rate of twist...the longer the projectile the faster the rate of twist needed to stabilize it typically...


The deerstalker has a 1:48" twist I believe...

Those are odd balls...some like power belts or even sabots...some like roundballs...

You can try whatever you'd like to shoot and see if they shoot accurately...

Id suggest starting with short Conicals...240gr Hornady PA conical, a 295gr (or so) power belt, etc...the 1:48 likely won't stabilize a long (heavier) conical or sabot...but you never know...with the shorter barrel I doubt it...but you don't know till you shoot...guns break "rules" all the time...they are merely guides to start with...



As far as sights....that's completely upto you as well..if you're comfortable with them use them...if not look into fiber optics or other sight alternatives...



Good luck! Feel free to ask questions...it's the only way to learn...and there's plenty to learn about flintlocking...


Also...be warned...black powder smoke can be more addictive than any drug on the street!
 

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1:48 is a compromise twist meant to "do all". The end result is usually acceptable accuracy with a range of projectiles, but rarely "tack driver" capability with any projectile.

I have a TC Renegade with a 48 twist. Many TC's do.

I've killed deer with it with round balls and sabots. It shot both about the same....nothing to go bragging on, but it'll kill deer. I got my longest flintlock kill to date with that rifle-- 90 paces, offhand.

Usually with the shorter guns like that, 70-90gr of 3F is the sweet spot. You can try 2F, but the shorter guns do better with 3F.

As mauser said, sights are all preference. Use what you got for now, and if you don't like it, have 'em changed. It's a little bit of a ride, but you could take it to Dixon's in Kempton for that work. Everyone has their favorite types of sights, so don't let anyone tell you that you need one or the other. Figure out what your eyes like.


You will get very good service from your flintlock with some attention to proper care and use. It's not rocket science, but it does have a little bit of a learning curve. And you will learn some lessons the hard way. That's the process. Ask any flintlock hunter for some of his stories, and I guarantee you'll hear some that cause chuckles now, but caused some serious cussing at the time!


Another option, too, is a maxiball, which will likely shoot fairly well in that rifle.
 

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I've had Lyman's Deer Stalker in .50, and now the Trade Gun in .54. Both basically the same barrel. I've shot PRB's and Maxi Balls out of both and either are more accurate than I am capable of at 50 yards. I now just shoot PRB's because they work fine and are cheaper.

I can see where fiber optics would be desirable in low light situations, but I like the traditional Buckhorn sights.

Like was mentioned above try different things and do it the way you like. The best thing you can do is shoot until the sequence you settle on is almost done in the sub-conscious.
 

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And don't do what I did....I used cut agate flints for a long, long, long time. I finally....FINALLY....went to knapped English flints when I got my long rifle, and what a difference.

Several good sources for them without breaking the bank, too.

I would get 6-12 shots from an agate flint on my TC.

On my long rifle, I have lost count of shots on a flint. I know I've shot over 40 shots at the range in a single session without doing anything more than wiping the fouling off the flint and frizzen.
 

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Not to hijack but s we are giving advice and discussing stuff...


The normal agate flints from TC or whoever in blister packs never worked well for me...


But the German Agate...that's. Different animal...mine are a white/clear color... expensive but they are 2 sided...can't really be knapped but they spark a very long time...in my updated TC lock and L&R replacement lock they spark the best...


Need to find a source for them..the guy I bought them from closed shop..


Funny how identical guns can like different flints, loads, powders, projectiles etc...but that's half the fun for me..a good reason to make smoke with flint n steel...


My biggest tip to becoming good with the flintlock is practice...a lot...i struggled a bit when I first started...i burnt several pounds of powder one summer...i learned my rifle and how to shoot it and keep it happy...
 

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Dixon's has the cut agate flints, mauser. If you get jammed up for them and can't make it to the gunmaker's fair, let me know and I can get you some and send them out there.

They spark really strong for 6-12 snaps for me and then they have to be flipped. Then repeat.

When they stop, they STOP. Like, strong spark on one snap, NOTHING on the next.

You can "knap" them. I've used the shaft of a screwdriver I don't care about and you can tap them gently and get an edge back for a few more shots. Not like the English flints, but it can be done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
This is great stuff! Thanks guys!

I believe what I have on the rifle now is a white agate. Should I pick up some English Knapped flints? The only one I have is what's on the rifle.
I kinda figured 3F would be best. The 2 cans of goex I recieved with the rifle were 3F and 4f. No telling what he was shooting before. I purchase the rifle from the original owners son. His father passed and he inherited the lyman. He doesn't like to hunt with a flintlock so he sold it to me. Otherwise I'd love to know what he previously put down the pipe.
Anybody have luck with 295gr tipped PB?
 

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3f for main charge and 4f to prime. Don't load with 4f.

Make CERTAIN the rifle is not already loaded, too. Sometimes charges are left in guns and it's better to be safe than sorry.
 

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tdd said:
3f for main charge and 4f to prime. Don't load with 4f.

Make CERTAIN the rifle is not already loaded, too. Sometimes charges are left in guns and it's better to be safe than sorry.
Yea, what he said. Put the ramrod down the barrel as far as it will go and mark it. Make sure it goes down the barrel on the outside past the touch hole. And/or point a flash light down the bore and look in touch hole liner. Hopefully you see light.
 

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the T/C flints work for T/C....
 

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Both my son and have shot Deerstalkers for several years. Both use standard iron sight which have accounted for quite a few deer. 3F down the tube and 4F in the pan. 80-90 grain loads. We both started out with patched round balls and switched to PowerBelts. The round balls with proper thickness patches shoot every bit as accurately as the PB's in our Lyman's and they are easy to pull when needed if you don't want to discharge the gun. So we've gone back to round balls.
 

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You can use 3fg as the main charge and as a priming charge. Don't let anyone tell you it can't be done. I know a few guys who shoot larger caliber flinters who use 2fg in pan and bore. Again it works well.

As to projectiles, I used to use T/C Maxi balls alot back when all I owned was the Renegade. It has a 1/48 twist, and I was getting 3 shot groups inside of 3 inches at 100 yards. This was a percussion gun mind you, but regardless, Maxi's are great projectiles. I have the mold and made my own for years. Once I bought my Great Plains rifle (flint) with its 1/60 twist, I switched to round balls and never went back.
 

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I shoot a Lyman trade with 70 gr and 240 gr Pa conicals. It's the first load I tried and I didn't have to try anything else. Pick one and go from there. Start around 70 gr of powder and work up to about 90 and see where her sweet spot is. As far as sights I put a v peep on mine last year and it was like night and day for ME. It made it so much easier for me.
 

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K. Gus said:
you have me curious what your V peep is, can you describe it
RMC makes them for flintlocks. On my rifle my front sight is a fiber optic and the rear is the v peep. It's just a notch like a rounded u actually and you just set the front sight in the u and line it up. For me it's easier to focus. The peep is not fiber optic. For me it was hard to focus lining up all the fiber optics. With this it's a lot easier for me.
 
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