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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-04-2019, 03:17 PM Thread Starter
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I recently bought a ThunderHawk .50 carbine and added a 24 inch .50 cal Firehawk too.
These really are superb rifles! Accurate, durable, good looking ( especially the Firehawk) and easy to clean despite the lack of a removable breech plug.
The Firehawk was a rescue attempt. Put up uncleaned and heavily fouled with Triple 7. Got her for $100. After initial cleaning I thought the bore was good. But after shooting and cleaning a couple times, the gunk came out to reveal pitting. I spotted a stainless barrel on eBay for a " Buy it now" of $150.
Got it. After some parts swapping, I have a stainless/ walnut Firehawk that shoots superbly.
Both the Thunderhawk and Firehawk share the 1-38 twist, which I've come to really appreciate. It shoots my favorite bullet, the 45 cal 250 gr XTP noticeably better than my 1-28 rifle, and using Greenhill's formula, will stabilize a 300 grain too. Neither barrel has a QLA.
I'm a high volume shooter and have found removable plugs to be more trouble than they're worth. Every rifle I've had with them, developed breech sealing issues at around 1600 shots. I don't fire heavy loads and am religious about cleaning. A fixed plug seals front and rear so no gas cutting of sealing surfaces. And honestly it takes me less time to clean these 2 fixed plugs than it does to clean my Black Diamonds. For the cupped plug I use a patch on a bore brush. Clean as a whistle.
Neither rifle had a long production run, which is a pity. These both were the first of their models I'd seen and didn't require any thought to give them a good home.
If you have a chance to get either rifle, you'd miss out on a good thing by not picking it up.

The LORD bless and keep you.The LORD make his face to shine apon you and be gracious to you.The LORD look apon you with favor and bring you peace
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-10-2019, 03:11 PM
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Have you ever fired any patched round balls with those rifles and if so, what did the loads consist of and how was the accuracy?

Last edited by arcticap; 05-10-2019 at 03:13 PM.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 11:48 AM Thread Starter
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No patched balls. Might try them at some point, but due to the shallow rifling( compared to a true ball barrel) I suspect loads would be kept light.
I have shot balls in sabots in other rifles and they work very well. You lose a lot of caliber though.Nice for plinking and perhaps turkey ( where permitted).

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 12:40 PM
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I have a blued/walnut ThunderHawk in 50 cal. It is as new. I converted mine from the number 11 caps to 209 primers. I too shot the 250 grain XTP with 100 grains of Pyrodex Select. The wood is so pretty that I have a hard time hunting with it. It was my brothers gun and he killed an elk with it in Colorado(iron sights only). He got crippled up in a freak accident so the gun is now mine.

I just bought a CVA Accura MR and a 3x9 Nikon to mount on it but sure do like the Thunder Chicken(as my brother calls it.)

The 1 in 38 twist will stabilize a round ball but it needs to be tight patched....like an Ox Yoke .20 Wonder Patch. I used 80 grains of Pyrodex with the round ball. You will for sure need a ball starter and want to swab the bore between ever few rounds. The Wonder patch does lesson the fouling as compared to a spit patch etc..

Great finds there Muddly!
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 02:59 PM
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Moved a $75 Thunderhawk into my muzzleloader lineup a couple years ago. Light, easy to clean and very, very accurate. Came with a low end Simmons 3-9 scope that I probably should replace, but it shoots one ragged hole at 50 yards. It ain't broke and I aint fixing it.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 03:05 PM
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Originally Posted by neckisred View Post
Moved a $75 Thunderhawk into my muzzleloader lineup a couple years ago. Light, easy to clean and very, very accurate. Came with a low end Simmons 3-9 scope that I probably should replace, but it shoots one ragged hole at 50 yards. It ain't broke and I aint fixing it.
There ya go. I am not a high dollar scope snob by any means. My first Ruger 243 wore a Tasco 4X scope. That was back in the 70s. I don't know how many scopes have come and gone since then but I still have that 4X scope and it's on my grandsons 22. He kilt his first squirrel with that old beater scope in place.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 03:22 PM
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Originally Posted by gpa&hisguns View Post
There ya go. I am not a high dollar scope snob by any means. My first Ruger 243 wore a Tasco 4X scope. That was back in the 70s. I don't know how many scopes have come and gone since then but I still have that 4X scope and it's on my grandsons 22. He kilt his first squirrel with that old beater scope in place.
After posting I realized I may have paid $100 for that Thunderhawk, either way its one heck of a gun for the money.


I have a Remington 700ML that I bought when they first came out. Money was a little tight then and I had good eyesight. Hunted with it a couple years with open sights till I scraped up an extra $60 for a used 4x Tasco with a used Leupold mount and rings. Gun still has the same $60 set up and has killed more deer than I can honestly guess.


My eyesight requires me to be a little scope snobby these days, but I always think about that 4x Tasco on that muzzy.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-11-2019, 12:37 PM Thread Starter
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My Firehawk reigns supreme.
As we've gotten to know one another, she has been giving more than a few inch or less 3 rounders at 100 yards. The best so far was a 7/16ths jaw dropper. This with an aperture sight.
I only shoot 10 shots per range trip. Most of the time, the 10 shots are under 2 3/4 inches. I have a few 2 inch 10 rounders.
I've shot 230, 250 and 300 grain 45 cal. XTP's and she likes them all. Same 70 grain 3f Swiss charge, 1636, 1575 and 1500 fps respectively. 24 inch barrel btw.
She puts them on the same vertical line. The zero is with the 250's. The 230's hit + 2 1/2 and the 300's - 1 1/2 at 100.
I am in a VERY happy place.
Can't wait for our October muzzleloader antlerless deer and bear season!

The LORD bless and keep you.The LORD make his face to shine apon you and be gracious to you.The LORD look apon you with favor and bring you peace
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 09-12-2019, 01:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muddly View Post
My Firehawk reigns supreme.
As we've gotten to know one another, she has been giving more than a few inch or less 3 rounders at 100 yards. The best so far was a 7/16ths jaw dropper.
7/16" = .4375" 45 cal XTP's are .452".
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