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Thread: Cleaning after the day's shooting

  1. #1
    Boolit Master

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    Cleaning after the day's shooting

    My cervical spinal fusions have finally healed enough that I can begin to begin shooting again. During that process a question occurred that pertains only to cap lock Sharps reproductions, not 1874 cartridge rifles: How often do you remove your rifle's wood from barreled receiver when cleaning the rifle after a day's shooting?

    Shiloh actions are significantly simplified compared with Italian reproductions, plus they have closer tolerances where breech block meets receiver. These Shiloh features should translate to easier, perhaps less complex cleaning procedure.
    Itís so simple to be wise. Just think of something stupid to say and then donít say it. Sam Levinson

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    I most never remove the barrel from the stock. I remove the falling block & clean it, remove the nipple &
    clean the barrel. But do all the cleaning with in on the stock.

    Fly

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
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    About the only time I remove metal from wood is the once per year full detail cleaning, or after a hunting trip of several days. Clean out all the crud, any accumulated moisture, apply a coat of Johnsons Paste Wax to the metal for moisture protection.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master


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    for me ...

    with full stock trad ml's, the barrel might get pulled for inspection once a year at best.

    with half stock trad ml's, a hooked tang breech barrel w/barrel wedge(s) gets pulled for every cleaning 'cause it's easy to pull and makes cleaning easier.

    no matter what, the lock *always* gets pulled and soaked in water while the barrel gets patch/jag cleaned with ... plain tepid water.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfd View Post
    for me ...

    with full stock trad ml's, the barrel might get pulled for inspection once a year at best.

    with half stock trad ml's, a hooked tang breech barrel w/barrel wedge(s) gets pulled for every cleaning 'cause it's easy to pull and makes cleaning easier.

    no matter what, the lock *always* gets pulled and soaked in water while the barrel gets patch/jag cleaned with ... plain tepid water.
    It's a Sharps.
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!


  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    I had a pair of cartridge Sharps and I'd recommend that you clean yours the same way I did mine even though a percussion. First thing I would do is wipe with several wet Ballistol patches from the breech area out the muzzle and then a couple dry ones. This was done at the range before I left. When I got home I'd rest a bit then use my 3 part cleaner through the barrel again until the patches came out clean. I would drop the block put before I did this and clean the block and any other parts that come in contact with black powder. Once clean I'd oil it and put it away standing in the safe on the muzzle to drain.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

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    Theres several reasons on the percussion sharps to clean the barrel forearm area that don't happen with the cartridge versions. I would clean every time or every other just to be safe. Not a big deal fit a screw driver and keep it with the rifle.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    I know a civil war cavalry reenactor who was very active years ago. He used to pack the inside of the forearm on his percussion Sharps with grease in order to prevent the dreaded Sharps forend explosion. I don't suppose all that grease did the wood any good, but I don't think he ever blew out a forend.

    Uncle R.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by waksupi View Post
    It's a Sharps.
    but it is a sharps muzzleloader caplock, not a cartridge breeched action? or is it me that's in the wrong forum?

    if the fore end is easy to remove for barrel cleaning, i'd do it. if not, don't do it. it's the tube, chamber, bolster, nipple, that are most important - and the lock - that are most important for removing bp residue. no big deal.
    Last edited by rfd; 03-17-2017 at 06:32 AM.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master

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    Another way would be to seal the forearm area with silicone sealant Wax barrel heavy 2-3 coats and fill gaps working forward with the silicone and assemble then let cure. Remove excess as it cures.

  11. #11
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    i wick in water thin CYA to the fore stock barrel channel - seals, protects and hardens the wood. i do this to all trad muzzleloaders, after staining and before applying a finish.

  12. #12
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    My used Pedersoli Berdan Sharps had a layer of soot on the lower barrel ahead of the action when I took the forend off. I wiped it down with Ballistol/water and Ballistol, and found the bluing untouched and no trace of rust.

    I've taken the lockplate off a time or two while cleaning and found very little evidence of fouling getting in there. Never have taken the buttstock off.

    So my cleaning regime is to take the block/lever assembly completely apart, (including the gas check plate), clean the parts with Ballistol/water, wipe or spray with Ballistol and reassemble. The outside of the action and barrel are treated the same, and the bore is patched with Ballistol/water until the gas sealing tube comes loose, and then it is patched with Ballistol. A spray of Ballistol into the various crevices and I'm done.

    I can do this at the range, so as not to have to take a dirty gun home. Maybe once a year, I'll take the forend and lockplate off to wipe the Ballistol stabilized goo out of the crannies. The only other reason to take the forend off would be to tighten the lever spring screw, which occasionally loosens.

    Sort of like my cap and ball revolver cleaning regime, where the barrel and cylinder are disassembled and cleaned while the outside is wiped and the internal lock work is sprayed with Ballistol. Once a year, the whole thing comes apart and I dredge the black mud out of the frame, note the lack of any corrosion, put it back together and back to the fray.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master

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    Bottom line is I'm glad I asked. Before my body went on strike, I had been removing butt stock all too often. When I thought about it - I had nothing else to do for a L O N G time - I felt I was ruining the butt stock fit to receiver just so I could dunk the barreled receiver into a bucket of water while I cleaned the barrel much like one cleans a muzzleloader.
    ***
    Regarding proper sub-forum into which I placed this query, the mechanism is hybrid - not exactly a muzzleloader, not a cartridge gun. Perhaps the query should have been placed into both sub-forums?
    Itís so simple to be wise. Just think of something stupid to say and then donít say it. Sam Levinson

  14. #14
    Boolit Master

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    Actually it is a cartridge gun. Its just not a brass cartridge but it is a paper cartridge. But in reality it could have went here, Black powder cartridges and possibly even BP paper patched. Sometimes its tough to figure out just where. These are interesting rifles and a real fun project to work with. Some seat a bullet and pour loose powder in behind the bullet others roll a paper cartridge from paper sometimes nitrited and load as a cartridge

  15. #15
    Boolit Master


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    i venture that if it requires loading down the muzzle, it's a muzzleloader and this'd be the correct forum.

    paper "cartridges" have been around for hundreds of years with muzzleloaders and were staples during the colonial conflict era.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master JHeath's Avatar
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    I've had a question about a Ferguson rifle that's been waiting for years because it's neither a muzzle loader nor a black powder cartridge rifle. Maybe it's a "factory rifle" since they were made in the hundreds? Or does the trigger guard opening handle make it a "lever rifle"?

  17. #17
    Boolit Master

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    What does it matter so much, Ask the question and see if you get the information you need. That's the important thing the help and information you need.

  18. #18
    Boolit Master

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    Technically, it's a "capping breech-loader," and you might have gotten a few more responses in the Single Shot section. That's where I generally post my percussion Sharps stuff. But I imagine most black powder enthusiasts monitor both sections.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check