Single Shot Rifle Picures - Page 2 - Graybeard Outdoors
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post #11 of 206 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 11:17 AM
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Default Re: Single Shot Rifle Picures

Thanks Woodbutcher.

Quote:
That little lathe is the greatest!!!
You bet! Don's quite an innovator. He actually first made this for me with a .45 collet for my .45-70 bullets.

Quote:
why not a 50/70?
Two reasons:

1) I could not find brass for the .50-70 easier/cheaper than this. The .348 brass cost me $0.50 each and the Cream of Wheat, primer and powder cost another $0.03, and

2) The primary purpose for getting and building this rifle was to shoot buffalo. In Alaska, the main free-ranging herd is the "Delta Herd", located in and around the barley fields near Delta Junction.

These buffalo are fairly spooky, and when hunting the wide open barley fields, the only available shot can sometimes approach 300 yards. I 'like' to shoot a 500-grain bullet from both my .45-70 and this rifle. At 1650 f/s, the trajectory of the .50 Alaskan (essentially a .50-90) sighted in for a 12" target, is such that I wouldn't have to aim "off hair" on a bull at 300 yds. It was my initial intent to use black powder, but I couldn't pack enough black powder in this case, let alone the .50-70, to get that 500-grain bullet up to 1650 f/s.

The 435-grain cast bullet shown in the above pictures has a fairly low BC, about .215. A custom made jacketed bullet (500-grains), made by Northwest Custom Projectiles has a BC of about .500. At 1650 f/s and sighted in for a 12" target, the 500-grain bullet is 34" low at 300 yds. I did push the muzzle velocity up to 1850 f/s where the drop at 300 reduces to 24", but the 9.5 lb rifle becomes too unpleasant to shoot. The 1650 f/s MV gives me all the terminal energy I need, and the probability of a 300 yd shot, while real, is relatively low. Nonetheless, I am considering having Bob make some 405-grainers for me to run up to about 2000 f/s, which drops to only 16" low at 300 yds.

Oh yeah, I forgot... Although the Martini-Enfield action can handle higher pressures, I am restricting chamber pressure to a max of 25,000 PSI because of some barrel issues.

Paul
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post #12 of 206 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 04:48 PM
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Default Re: Single Shot Rifle Picures

Dear Gitano: Thanks for your response. Very clear!
A few years ago, at a gun show, I purchased 3 cartridges, for my little collection. I still have them, a 45/70, a 38/55, and a 50/70. Got rifles for the first two, and am very happy with them,... still looking at that third cartridge.
I couldn't answer why I would need anything like that, but that big "pumpkin" is just fascinating. You might understand. And there just ain't many places to try to learn about such matters as this so thanks again.
I sincerely hope you get your Buff.
Woodbutcher

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post #13 of 206 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 06:34 PM
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Default Re: Single Shot Rifle Picures

Loading for my .50-140 is a pain, especially making the bullets. Here is my lead melter with an adjustable gang mold to cast cylinders to pound into bullets.
[img]
Here is the gang mold in an open position along side a conventional mold.

Here are some lead cylinders, 580 grains.
[img]
Here's the hammer die, body, plunger and nose forming end.
[img]
About 40 hard wacks with a big hammer and the bullet is formed.
[img]
A raw cylinder and a formed bullet, both of pure lead.
[img]
Then there is the job of cutting paper, wetting it, wrapping the bullet and cutting of the twisty.
[img]
Here is a loaded .50-140 cartridge along side a .45-70. Velocity is 1,600 fps. It is possible to get over 1,900 fps but recoil is high.
[img]
Another load is three .500 balls (187-grains) at 1,200 fps. They pattern in about 6 inches at 50 yards. I think the balls stay fairly round with the Poly-Patches between them. I also think it would be a good close range deer load.
[img]
Here's the gun they get shot out of, a Thompson-Center TCR-87 with a fiberglass stock I made. Recoil split the factory wood stock.
[img]
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post #14 of 206 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 07:41 PM
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Default Re: Single Shot Rifle Picures

IOWA DON, is that bullet making set manufactured nowadays? Or is that a custom made item?
Boy, this thread is gettin better and better!!
Woodbutcher
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post #15 of 206 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 08:35 PM
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Default Re: Single Shot Rifle Picures

Quote:
You might understand.
I do indeed. Be careful... It appears to me that the "bug has already bitten".

Iowa Don - I'll second Woodbutcher's question asking about the availability of those "hammer swages". If they're still in production, who's makin' 'em?

Paul
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post #16 of 206 (permalink) Old 09-02-2007, 12:12 PM
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Default Re: Single Shot Rifle Picures

My hammer dies came from RCE Co., I think in the summer of 2003. I did a Google search and RCE appears to still be in business. The web site is www.rceco.com. The telephone number is 541/512-0440. The guy I talked with a few years ago was named Richard, and I think his last name is Corbon, and I think he is related to the other bullet swaging die makers. If I recall correctly his hammer dies are more or less custom. That is, he makes whatever diameter the customer asks for. Also, in regard to paper-patched bullets he will offer advice in regard to proper diameter. He also made the gang mold. And the website indicates he sells paper for paper patching. Also, here are some sizes in regard to my .50-140. Barrel groove diameter is 0.507 and barrel land diameter is 0.491. Lead cylinders coming out of the gang mold have a diameter of 0.471. Lead slugs coming out of the hammer die are bumped up to a diameter of 0.494. After wrapping with two wraps of 24-pound paper or three wraps of 16-pond paper the total diameter of the bullets are 0.507. My 24-pound paper is Eaton 25% cotton and my 16-pound paper is Alvin 100% cotton vellum. The twistys seem fragile with the 25% cotton paper and sort of want to break off when putting on the paper. The 100% paper seems to be much tougher and more flexible so the twistys are not a problem. I did a Google seach and it appears the Alvin 100% cotton vellum paper is still sold. I did not mention it, but I apply some soft lubricant to the paper-patched bullets (with fingers) and then some powdered graphite (with fingers). Also, between making bullets and loading them into cases I figure it takes 15 hours to load up 50 cartridges. However, with the recoil they produce one probably does not want to shoot more than five rounds in one day. I hope to shoot a deer with it this winter, both with the paper-patched bullets and with the multiple-ball loads.
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post #17 of 206 (permalink) Old 09-02-2007, 12:16 PM
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Default Re: Single Shot Rifle Picures

Correction -- After wrapping with paper, the total bullet diameter is 0.509, not 0.507.
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post #18 of 206 (permalink) Old 09-02-2007, 07:18 PM
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Default Re: Single Shot Rifle Picures

Let's see now, 40 hits per bullet, for 50 bullets, and you realize..."it aint the hit, it's the lift"!!!
Yeah, I'll bet it kicks! But still, them big bores are special! Thank you! Woodbutcher
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post #19 of 206 (permalink) Old 09-03-2007, 10:56 AM
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Default Re: Single Shot Rifle Picures

Thanks Iowa Don. I've been talking with Richard Corbin lately. He is indeed the brother of Dave Corbin. They used to be "in the business" together, but had some differences of opinion on which way "things should go", so Richard decided to start his own business. I'll have to ask him about the hammer dies.

I've never shot paper-patched bullets , but I have heard that they are a challenge to get much accuracy out of. What's your experience been?

Paul
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post #20 of 206 (permalink) Old 09-03-2007, 11:51 AM
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Default Re: Single Shot Rifle Picures

Quote:
When the case gets too hot to hold onto, I drop it. I used to drop it in water, but it seems to me that that might just harden it a bit. I've been told by an internet metalurgist that brass does not "temper quench" like iron/steel does. Still... I'm certain it doesn't harden with air cooling.
Nice picts and story..... BUT, the reason you drop the heated cases into water is.... One, they will not harden by doing so, and Two, when you air cool the brass, the heat creeps down and also softens the "head of the case"!!! This is VERY dangerous on a high pressure round!!!

You may not get into trouble with the 50 Alaskan, but someone with a modern magnum will!!! So, i hope no one decides to use your method on a high pressure round...

BTW, i believe the 50 Alaskan was first made by Bill Fuller in Cooper Landing Alaska, and Bill was a friend of mine.... It was always fun driveing over his way for a day of conversation and BS stories.. He was quite a character!

DM

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