View Full Version : Smallbore Schuetzen

09-13-2007, 11:01 AM
I am intrested in the merits of the 25-20SS vs. the 25-21 Stevens vs. the 25-25 Stevens .

I am also intrested in the 28-30 Stevens [smilie=1:

09-13-2007, 12:04 PM
Seems like I recall reading that the .25-25 was a bad barrel fouler with BP because it was so long compared to its diameter. The .25-20 SS was probably more common than all the rest put together. The main difference with smokeless in single shot guns would be case availability, I would think. Most of those are collector's items. As a kid, I was always fascinated by the .25-25 in my dad's collection.

09-13-2007, 02:10 PM
If I ever get off my butt and have a CPA built . I plan on having a 25 caliber barrel for it .

Bertram is making brass for all three of the 25's and the 28-30 as well .

In the past I had been more inclined to go with the 25-20SS , however recently I started reading more about the 25-21 Stevens and seem to like that one as well .

And then the 25-25 is pretty much the same as the 28-30 , both are pretty much perfectly straight cases .

As far as BP is concerned , it is not my intention to shoot BP in these small caliber cases .

09-13-2007, 02:14 PM
It is my hope to order a CPA in the next year with a 32-40 barrel in full schuetzen style . And possibly get a 28-30 barrel assembly at the same time .

Then later get a 25 caliber barrel as well as a 38-55 barrel .

But this could take a long time to accomplish , based on cost [smilie=1:

09-13-2007, 03:36 PM
Those CPAs are gorgeous rifles. I've always liked the 44 1/2 Stevens, and I guess a traditional cartridge would be the way to go, but it would be hard for me to ignore the practicality of the .25-20 repeater case.

09-13-2007, 04:50 PM
Those CPAs are gorgeous rifles. I've always liked the 44 1/2 Stevens, and I guess a traditional cartridge would be the way to go, but it would be hard for me to ignore the practicality of the .25-20 repeater case.

Never accuse me of being practical :drinks:

I am one of those that likes to try everything [smilie=1:

Also with these rifles as schuetzen rifles 20 cases will last you a long time !

09-13-2007, 07:34 PM
I have a friend that shoots regularly at Etna Green at the ASSRA Nationals. Either last fall or early this year he shot a perfect score at the bench (using smokeless powder and a plain base bullet of his own design in a bullet mould he made himself). That is a 250x250 with the .25 SS at 200 yards (the twenty five ring is 1.5 " in diameter). That is 10 straight "centers" at 200 yards during a registered match with a .25! His name is Wayne Vietz and a real gentleman. He was using smokeless powder.


09-13-2007, 07:36 PM

I have a NIB 32-40 CPA Mod 52 stock, spur lever, no.3 wt Douglas XX.

any interest? PM, and I'll send pictures

09-13-2007, 10:20 PM

I have a NIB 32-40 CPA Mod 52 stock, spur lever, no.3 wt Douglas XX.

any interest? PM, and I'll send pictures

4060 thanks for the offer !

But I better not take you up on it until I get my Shiloh 50-90 paid for :???:

Bent Ramrod
09-14-2007, 10:39 PM

I have a Low Wall in .25-20SS and another in .25-25 Stevens, a Stevens #47 with an extra .25-20SS barrel and a Stevens 44-1/2 with three barrels: .25-20 WCF, .25-20 SS and .25-21 Stevens. Also a Stevens 44 that has been set back and rechambered to .25-20 WCF. Like you, I like to try everything :mrgreen:.

I have not myself been able to discern any accuracy difference between the .25-20SS and the .25-21, although the old references made much of this. Perhaps (as was said) the straight case burned black powder better than the mild tapered case, but in the modern-day smokeless shooting of the Quarter Bore Corps I have noticed none of the supremacy of one over the other that I see with the 6mmPPC in benchrest. I have not been able to load the .25-21 with cast boolits with any more powder or to any higher velocities than the .25-20SS, either. It looks a little cooler, but the shells are more expensive than .25-20SS shells, also.

The .25-25 similarly seems to have about the same limit on velocity of loads with accuracy with lead boolits but I haven't exhausted all the attempts in this direction. There's got to be some medium-medium powder that will fill this case and give a constant shove all down the barrel; I just haven't found it yet! Where this caliber really comes into its own is with the 87 gr jacketed flat point. With 17 gr of VV N-133 it hits about 2000 ft/sec and most shots go into 1-1/4" at 100 yards, with me at the helm. This shell, by the way, is the only one where a switch to the Magnum Small Rifle Primer seems to consistently do some good. Sometimes it seems to help with the .25-21 and .25-20SS but as often again not. I seem to recall some good scores on the ASSRA lists with the .25-25, as well.

When Bertram cylindrical cases let go, they split most often in the middle of the side (even when annealed), which means you can't cut the broken .25-25's off to make .25-21's. Also they seem to be made to several different lengths, even in a given box of them and none of them seem to be the standard length of the old commercial shells from REM-UMC or others. They are also made in a number of different diameters, with a number of different rim widths, some of which are distinctly oval. So messing with these calibers is not for the fainthearted or frustratable or financially challenged. I use a set of CH 4-D dies in .25-21 for both shells, screwing out the decapping pin holder for full-length resizing of the .25-25. The set seems to work OK for both. Some shells have to be spun in a chuck and the rims rounded or trimmed down; some are almost too small to begin with. I haven't tried Rocky Mountain Cartridge Co's offerings of these, but their .22-15-60 shells are very good and very consistent, a good augury for the larger sizes.

The .25-20 SS seems to be maybe a little more robust, but I haven't started using my Bertram cases yet, and is a lot more versatile. Obviously, it is capable of fine accuracy with lead bullets, as witness the Quarter Bore Corps and other ASSRA scores with it. It is also capable of being loaded to pretty impressive ballistics, in a strong rifle with a bushed firing pin. They were doing this in the 1930's in the American Rifleman, and with 60-grain jacketed hollow points, they had a kind of scaled-up .22 Hornet. I've gotten up to 15.5 grains of 4227 behind the Hornady, Arizona Bullet Co and Winchester 60 grainers with no trouble with extraction or other pressure signs in the Low Wall. 15.0 grains clocked over 2600 ft/sec on my indispensable Shooting Chrony with these bullets. Alas, the Winchester 60 grain seems to do better in these loadings than the Hornady flatpoint, so I don't shoot this load a lot and am always on the lookout for partial boxes of this discontinued classic. I also load the 257420 solid or HP gascheck boolit with 15 gr of Reloder 7 for about 2000 ft/sec, although this is a 50-75 yd offhand plinking load rather than a longer range one.

In this versatility, the 25-20SS has an advantage over the .25-20 WCF, which cannot be loaded to this intensity, and as far as I know hasn't showed up in the target scores, although for day-in, day-out shooting, the Repeater cartridge is fine. The 25-20SS also does about everything the .25-21 can do, and covers most of the .25-25. The look of the .25-20SS is almost as aesthetic as the .25-21, also. So if you are going to break into this quarter-inch insanity, and want as much as you can get from one load, I would say the .25-20SS is the way to go ifor a first single-shot rifle. If enough people get into this, I would hope that Starline might make new cases for it, and for the 2R and 22-3000 Lovell shooters also.

09-15-2007, 05:38 AM
Bent Ramrod , thanks for the reply ! That was informative to say the least :-D

When I originally started thinking of a 25 caliber schuetzen it cam about thru an article I read in Handloader or Rifle quite a few years ago . The fellow that had written the article , had built a 25-20SS on a highwall (I believe) action .

And obviousely the 25-20SS was my original caliber of choice . Then I started reading about the 25-21 and 25-25 .

There is an older gentleman in my area who's two calibers of choice are the 22 Hornat and the R2 Lovell . This fellow has 6 or 7 rifles for the R2 Lovell . He has one nice old 03 Springfield in a R2 that was built by Sedgley . Been trying to buy this one from him with no luck . He also has one or two on 1878 Sharps actions .

09-15-2007, 08:29 AM
Dang you guys! I'm drooling all over the keyboard!!! Those CPA's are a dream for me.
For good dope on the 25's read Ned Roberts "The Breech Loading Single Shot Rifle". I do about once a year and pick up something new every time.

My own Stevens 44 has a shot out 32-20 barrel and I've often thought about a 25 cal barrel. I think if I did it I would stick with something other than 25-20 Win as I have 3 of those and would be tempted to use ammo hotter than the 44 might like.

09-15-2007, 09:44 AM
Dang you guys! I'm drooling all over the keyboard!!!

Doncha wear a bib when ya visit here? :-D I had to start when the single shot section opened up. Those CPA's are super nice and so are the Meechums.


09-15-2007, 09:06 PM
Those CPA's are super nice and so are the Meechums.


Thats kinda my problem [smilie=1:

I'm hung up on Marlin's , really really like Sharps and CPA's or original 44 1/2's . And I am getting partial to the Lone Star rollingblocks and the Ballards :???:

One can never have to much money when it comes to guns [smilie=1:

Bent Ramrod
09-15-2007, 10:54 PM

I've fired a couple boxes of factory .25-20R in my Stevens 44 with no bad results. This was the 86-grain lead bullet load which (I think) is about all that is still offered. The 60-gr High Speed with the hollow point is obsolete and not often found except at collectors' prices. That loading I definitely wouldn't shoot in a 44.

09-16-2007, 09:26 AM
What I'd like is to have the original 32-20 barrel relined and have a 25 cal barrel made up in the same half octagon style. Maybe a 28-30 barrel too. Only time and money, well mainly money, keep me from doing it. And in truth I WANT a CPA 44 1/2 in the Shuetzen style. Not that I'm any great off hand shot, but I love the style.

Cimarron Red
09-16-2007, 04:09 PM
I just want to second Bret4207's recommendation of Ned Roberts' "The Breech Loading Single Shot Rifle." I keep my copy on my night stand and read him several times a week. I would also recommend Charlie Dell's book on the schuetzen rifle.

Several of the guys I shoot BPCR silhouettes with use CPA rifles, and they shoot them well. I really prefer the design of the Winchester Single Shot although I don't own an original, just Browning/Winchester reproductions. That said, I've never seen a classic American single shot rifle I didn't like.

09-16-2007, 08:14 PM
I sort of grew up using a Stevens Favorite, a Savage actually, and a 44 in 22 mag my Dad made up. I wish I still had that 22 mag. What a shooter! Young eyes helped I'm sure, but I couldn't miss with that one. Winnies are nice, but jeeze, Harry Pope loved Stevens!

09-16-2007, 09:27 PM
Not to be argumentative, but Harry Pope HATED Stevens. He had nothing good to say about them after his five years working for them. It seems to have been a case of two entirely divergent work attitudes. Stevens was all about "production" and Harry was all about "Perfect" and he wouldn't compromise. The only time Harry made any money was when he worked for Stevens. Kind of a sad state of affairs. I don't think either Stevens OR Harry Pope were bad guys, it just wasn't a good fit.


Cimarron Red
09-16-2007, 10:26 PM

I remember reading a quote from Pope where he referred to his time with Stevens as that period when he was "...compelled to use their junk!" But I felt it a little indelicate to lay that one on Bret. But now you've given me leave. Sorry, Bret ;>)

BTW, thanks very much, Dale, for your Browning trigger fix. I've been using it since your article appeared in the Single-Shot Exchange in, I think, 2000. And I've applied it to 9 guns so far.

09-17-2007, 12:19 AM
Cimarron Red;
Thanks for the kind words ( I have three of the "new" Winchesters and Brownings with the "McGee Trigger Fix). it is good to hear that at least ONE person read my article[smilie=1: . Actually, I am being a bit disingenuous - I've had responses all the way from as far away as Iceland and New Zealand on that one." Fairly warms the cockles of my heart, it does ".

On topic:
I have a Stevens 44 that I built up as a .22 rimfire silhouette rifle (understudy to my BPCR Silhouette Rifle) and a CPA Stevens-Pope in .32/40. The design is excellent but the execution of the original 44's and 44's were somewhat less than CPA's efforts, in my opinion. However, I still like them A BUNCH!


09-17-2007, 12:26 AM
Sorry, a double post. It's past my bed time[smilie=1:


09-17-2007, 07:18 AM
True guys. I forgot about Harry getting the shaft from Stevens. How about I rephrase it to "Harry Pope made beautiful shooting Stevens rifles!"

Dale- I've never acutally seen a CPA. They're nicer than the originals? Wow, now I'm really drooling.

09-17-2007, 08:49 AM
They are awfully nice looking rifles. One of the guys I shoot BPCRS with has one in 40-65 with an extra 45-90 barrel.


Cimarron Red
09-17-2007, 10:27 AM
CPA's are great rifles. As I mentioned eqarlier several of the guys I shoot sihouettes with use them. In fact at last Saturday's match my spotter shot one in .40-65. They have the big advantage of being a switch-barrel rifle. There is a caveat here, though. The barrels thread into the receiver in the usual way, but they are kept tight by a single set screw accessible through the bottom of the forearm. On two occasions I've seen shooters at matches complaining that their normally accurate rifles couldn't hit anything. Of course, the culprit was a loose barrel caused by the set screw backing out. Check it often, or if you have only one barrel, Lok-Tite it in place.

Cimarron Red
09-17-2007, 10:31 AM

OT -- I've heard it rumored that MVA is considering offering a single-set trigger for the Browning/Winchester 1885? Know anything?

09-17-2007, 11:00 AM
Cimmaron Red;
So far, it is just a rumor. I have not talked to MVA directly, tho'.

Regarding the barrel retaining screw coming loose. I, too, have had that problem. You MUST be careful ot tightening that screw too tight also. You could crack the frame. The answer, I believe is to put shellac on the screw threads (threads must be cleaned of all oil). The shellac will set up and keep the screw tight but the screw will remain easy to remove (unlike some versions of Loc-Tite).



09-18-2007, 06:28 PM
Went thrumy stack of "Handloader" magazines and found the edition with the article on the 25 cal schuetzen rifles .

It is the Dec/Jan 1999 edition ( or #196) . The article is on page 44 and is titled "25-20 Single Shot" by C. Brockway .

Its a fairly informative article , and had quite enough to get me intrested . Although for me most of the time it doesn't take much [smilie=1:

Brockway built a Winchester Highwall in 25-20SS , it has a Douglas barrel and Shuttleworth (CPA) wood . He also had a couple moulds made that look pretty sporty to me [smilie=1:

09-28-2007, 05:18 PM
I have one of those moulds that Brockway made for that article. 100gr, spitzer.
Shoots like a house afire through my CPA, 25-20 SS