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Joined: 10/23/2004
Posts: 3
trouble keeping sights acurate

i recently purchased a t/c firestorm flintlock. got i sighted in around 40-50 yds thought everything was good then went out for the first day and missed 2 deer??? so when the day was done shot the gun to unload it at a tree and was hitting about 2- 2.5 feet low left right was good was dead center .but why would it be so far off up and down. everything was consitant as far as amount of powder and such and the sights were untouched from the weekend before when initally sighted in. any info or thoughts would be graetly appreciated

thanks juble

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Location: Florida,USA
Joined: 08/21/2003
Posts: 1566
trouble keeping sights acurate

Welcome to the forum Juble.

I have a T/C New Englander that had a similar problem.
At first it would start shooting low but dead on left to right. Then it would just get wild, shooting everywhere. It would be fine after I would break it down and soak it in the tub until I had 4 or 5 shots thru it. It was during one of these break downs that I noticed the fore stock pin was extra loose. It fit tightly on reassembly so I paid no mind to it until I shot at a pig about 20 yards away and missed him, then about 2 hours later another pig work his way into range and I shot at and missed him at about 50 yards. He just stood there as I reloaded and thats when I heard the metalic "clink" and saw my fore stock pin bounce off the stand platform and land in the pinestraw below.
It took every ounce of self control in my body to keep from hurlling it into the swamp behind me and I climbed down and went home, put the pin into my vise and whacked it a couple of times with a big ball peen hammer. Problem solved. Been dead on ever since.

One more thing to check.......How old is your Powder? Keeping it dry? Storing it tightly closed? Incomplete ignition of the powder charge could cause it to shoot low, although you would alomost certainly notice an incomplete ignition.

Well I hope this helps. Good luck.

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Joined: 10/23/2004
Posts: 3
trouble keeping sights acurate

i appreciate that info i tthought asking that question was kinda silly but at least i'm not the only one who had a similar problem. the powder is only at most 3-4 months old. never been wet . is this too old for powder?? i'm new to this but didn't expect the the gun to possibaly be the problem . is this a noted problem with t/c fire arms?? i'll check the sights here in a little bit let you know what i find .

thanks again
juble sacket

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Joined: 10/23/2004
Posts: 3
trouble keeping sights acurate

ok the wedge was tight going in and coming out i don't think that there is a problem there what about different size patches ???? i currently am using a .490 ball with a .010 patch would a .015 patch make things more accurate . when i baught the gun a oldtimmer said to use the .010 patches to not make it any hader than neede to load. any info or experiances would be appreciated .

thanks juble

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Location: Southeast Washington State
Joined: 09/28/2004
Posts: 117
trouble keeping sights acurate

What's the rate of twist on the barrel? Usually T/C makes their traditional muzzleloaders with a 1:48" twist rate, and patched round balls like it more around a 1:66" rate. You should still be able to get halfway decent accuracy with a 1:48" twist, better than what you are saying. If the twist rate is less than 1:48", you might be spinning the ball too fast, which will spiral it out of the barrel.

You might also be seating the ball in the patch unevenly. Muzzleloaders aren't as sensitive to crown conformity as high power rifles, but if the ball and patch aren't leaving the barrel truly perpendicular to the crown, you can get a little deflection from that as well. Make sure you have that ball and patch well centered and lubed up enough when you are starting that load down the bore.

I don't think patch thickness is gonna make much difference, provided that when you go to start the bullet down the barrel it is snug enough to offer a little resistance. You might try shooting some small conicals to see what the results are without the patch. If you are shooting a 50 cal you can get 250 grain maxi ball bullets that should do okay for the rate of twist I assume your rifle has.

If your shots are hitting consistently low (precision), but not to the point of aim (accuracy), then it sounds like you have a problem with your sights moving since the last time you sighted in. It happens. If the shots are just going wild, then I'd guess it is the load and not the sights that is the problem. I hope you are using a good rest to test fire from, and not offhand, or you may be introducing a human factor into the equation.

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Joined: 10/30/2004
Posts: 117
trouble keeping sights acurate

I have a 48 twist mz. I used to shoot balls in it till I found they are not the most efficient killers.

That aside, patch thickness used to have lots to do with accuracy in my TC. Off by .005 and accuracy could get way better or worse.

I did find that I had better accuracy with conicals and killed more efficiently.

I suspect that for accuracy to go from sighted in and decent to way off, there has to be some other factor. Something with the gun or the ignition would be my best guess. Try a hotter cap if you can. And check to make sure EVERYTHING is tight.

Good luck, Jeff

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