RotoMetals2Lee PrecisionBallisti-CastInline Fabrication
MidSouth Shooters SupplyStainLess Steel MediaGraf & SonsTitan Reloading
Results 1 to 14 of 14

Thread: Kentucky Rifle and Minie bullets?

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    On the beach
    Posts
    18

    Kentucky Rifle and Minie bullets?

    I'm thinking about getting a Tradition's Kentucky Rifle kit. However, the company selling it claims that it should only be used with a ball bullet. Is this true or can I use a Minie bullet?

    -Pat

  2. #2
    Boolit Master oldhickory's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Enders Pa.
    Posts
    2,339
    Traditionaly Pennsylvania/Kentucky rifles have very deep rifling with slow twists, I think you would find that a Minie bullet would not form a gas seal destroying accuracy. In short, a Minie depends on shallow rifling to form a good gas seal. With the deep rifling traditional with the Pa/Ky long rifles, you're best served with a properly patched round ball.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master Baron von Trollwhack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Northern Kentucky
    Posts
    2,003
    I shoot a trade gun in 58 caliber, 1/56 twist, deep, patch gun rifling. For me it shoots the RCBS 58 minie' as well as RB ,except with a much lower point of impact at 50 yards. I use 3f for the RB, and for the minie'. In consideration of the thin barrel, the minie' gets a lighter charge.. Different charges too. Both good deer loads.

    The minie' is the one I shoot in my custom Hoyt barreled 2 band Enfield with a much heavier barrel, 40 grains of 3f @ 840 fps. Same as the trade gun. My Hoyt gun is rifled 1/56, 7 groove shallow for the minie. Even 40 grains puts the minie' base into fully expanded contact with bore & groove in the patch gun.

    My own belief is that the manufacturers of some guns tell you RB only, and to use sometimes anemic charges because of ther cheap metal, crummy breeching, and crappy workmanship.

    BvT
    Last edited by Baron von Trollwhack; 12-29-2008 at 12:36 PM. Reason: to clarify
    The soviet communists drugged their populations with alcohol from post WW II until 1991 to control them.
    American progressives, liberals, socialists and now, visible communists and all shades of democrats and rinos have worked hard since WW II to drug Americans with sex, dope, porn, gay rights, abortion, and green/global phantasies in order to control them.

    BvT

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    N. Las Vegas, NV
    Posts
    5,105
    It isn't the deep rifling that destroys accuracy for minies , it's the slow rate of twist. They usually have a 1-66 twist which does not stablize a maxie or minie very well. You can sometimes get them in a 1-48 twist which will stablize it better. You might try another company if you really want to shoot other than RBs if you need to to get a tighter twist. Sometimes you can get the Lee REALs that are the shorter(they have 2 different sizes in most calibers) to shoot reasonably well but not as good as the RBs in the slower twists.
    Aim small, miss small!

  5. #5
    Boolit Master oldhickory's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Enders Pa.
    Posts
    2,339
    I have to disagree, the 1855-64 Springfields had a twist rate of 1:72 and shot the .58 Minie just fine while the P53 Enfields had a twist rate of 1:78 and did as well.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master northmn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Northern MN
    Posts
    1,579
    Rate of twist is also somewhat dependent upon caliber as it is the angle of twist that makes the difference not the length. A 58 with a 1-56 has a sharper angle of twist than a 50 with a 1-56 and essentially a faster twist. As I understand it the military muskets had the 1-70 or so twists as they did not them to foul as much for multiple loading. They also used undersized minnies to maintain continued loading (I think also that the bores likely varied somewhat in those times). The standard powder charges were also 60-70 grains. All that being said, you can get a somewhat accurate load with minnies in other calibers, and designs but they may not be very satisfactory depending on your use and likely would be a light charge. There selection of minnies is limited for other calibers and fairly broad for the 58 which makes it a good choice for minnies. As to RB only use, in this day of liabilities and powders like 777, they may be concerned about excessive pressures. RB guns are designed to use RB's. Use the correct tool for the job.

    Northmn

  7. #7
    Boolit Master




    Boz330's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Central Kentucky
    Posts
    4,299
    I have a 58cal Sharon barreled Hawken and I tried both the REAL and a Minie bullet in it and got minute of deer accuracy at a 100yd. The Sharon barrel has very deep rifling. The normal ball is almost 300gr so no real need to go to one of the bullets but I was just curious. I did have to clean some lead out though. If I was going after something like elk, I wouldn't hesitate to use one though.

    Bob
    GUNFIRE! The sound of Freedom!

  8. #8
    Boolit Master northmn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Northern MN
    Posts
    1,579
    BOZ One of the things about a 58 with a Hawkin buttplate is that I bet the REALS and Minnies got your attention whrn you touched them off. Even a RB in a Hawken style can be a little punishing depending on the loads. I had one that loked about 120 grains before it shot real well. At iron sight and blackpowder ranges a 58 RB is pretty fair on about any deer I have seen.

    Northmn

  9. #9
    Boolit Master




    Boz330's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Central Kentucky
    Posts
    4,299
    I haven't really up loaded it yet, 100gr works just fine for the shots I will need to take. The stock actually gets my cheek worse than my shoulder. That and I haven't really gone for a marathon shooting session with it either. This is primarily a hunting rifle, for lots of shooting I have a 40cal Ohio squirrel rifle that I can shoot all day on a handful of powder and lead and no pain.

    Bob
    GUNFIRE! The sound of Freedom!

  10. #10
    Boolit Master northmn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Northern MN
    Posts
    1,579
    40's are great for lots of shooting. As I have mellowed over time I have found that shooting most game requires so much but not so much as some think. I do not like real small bores for deer, but you do not have to hurt yourself to get them. A 58 loaded reasonably is very good. As are 50's and 54's. I have the parts to build a 58 for a winter project. English style to spread recoil and utilize a shorter barrel in MN tree stands, but have no plans for loads much more than you are using. 58's carry a little better at 100 yards or so. RB's are plenty in a 58.

    Northmn

  11. #11
    Boolit Master




    Boz330's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Central Kentucky
    Posts
    4,299
    I've taken 1 deer with the 40 at 90 yds, won't do it again. Even a 50 at a 100 is starting to lose a lot of it's energy with a RB. The 58 though is still carrying quite a bit of energy out there. With that Sharon barrel, I'm sure I can go to 130gr of powder or maybe more but it isn't needed for deer size game.
    For elk I would probably go with the REAL and 130gr, that would surely have a nice kick.

    Bob
    GUNFIRE! The sound of Freedom!

  12. #12
    Boolit Master

    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    N. Las Vegas, NV
    Posts
    5,105
    If you're not stuck on the Kentucky Traditions also has a St. Louis Hawkin kit with a 50 cal 1/48 twist. It should do fine for both RB's and conicals.
    Aim small, miss small!

  13. #13
    Boolit Master


    Wayne Smith's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Hampton Roads, Virginia
    Posts
    6,871
    Lyman Great Plains Rifle - you can get either a 1-48 or a 1-66 barrel or both. One of the better of the production replicas.
    Wayne the Shrink

    There is no 'right' that requires me to work for you or you to work for me!

  14. #14
    Boolit Master northmn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Northern MN
    Posts
    1,579
    The Lyman GP comes in the round ball model at 1-66 and the "Hunter" with 1-32 I think. Its faster than 1-48 and shallower grooved for slugs. Original Hawkens were sometimes made for slugs in later years. Those slugs were not however Maxi Ball or the newer stuff but pretty heavy round nose bullets. When you look at "replacement" barrels for tradional guns like the TC Hawken or their clones you also see a slower twist and deeper rifling. Their has been a recognized difference in purpose between barrel designs.

    Noerthmn

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
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