New Guy with a New gun, HELP!

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heavydutyco2

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Hi all from western MD! i have recently gotten lucky enough to win a Pedersoli 1862 CS Richmond .58 cal Rifle Musket she is quite the beaut!! I am familiar with new age muzzle loading but not older black powder i want to reenact and hunt/shoot with this rifle so i have a few questions.
-Is it better to make my own Minie balls or purchase, if so where?
-Black powder,What is ok to use in this reproduction?
-Best place to find a bayonet
-any other tips and tricks for the novice?
I look forward to hear from the many experts on this site thanks in advance!!!!
 
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poorjack

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Hi all from western MD! i have recently gotten lucky enough to win a Pedersoli 1862 CS Richmond .58 cal Rifle Musket she is quite the beaut!! I am familiar with new age muzzle loading but not older black powder i want to reenact and hunt/shoot with this rifle so i have a few questions.
-Is it better to make my own Minie balls or purchase, if so where?
-Black powder,What is ok to use in this reproduction?
-Best place to find a bayonet
-any other tips and tricks for the novice?
I look forward to hear from the many experts on this site thanks in advance!!!!
I shoot muskets in competition with the North South Skirmish Association (see the STICKY!)
1) YES, best to make your own.
First, confirm what your bore size is, and that means measure it not what's marked on the barrel. Second, get a mold that drops right at that figure. Third, get sizing die to put it right on that figure. You'll also need to lube the minie, dip lubing is fine on the grooves. I use beeswax/lard 60/40 and both my Colt and Parker Hales are 2moa shooters.
2) BLACK POWDER ONLY. There isn't a single substitute I'd even think of using due to characteristics of the fouling. Pyrodex actually has a chemical in it that is non toxic until you shoot it. Then it turns to cyanide gas. Just a whiff or two in the open won't cause a problem, but spend an extended time shooting..........
3) Bayonet- gooogle for Civil War Sutler Reenactor and you'll get tons of hits.

Just a few comments from a former reenactor- IF you plan on shooting this gun live and want accuracy, get another gun for reenacting. Let it take the abuse that will inevitably come about reenacting. Some reenactors will disagree but from the perspective of a competitive shooter with Civil War guns, I have yet to see any gun that has been reenacted with perform to the levels of a gun that has spent it's life on the target range. Sorry, but them's the facts, any reenactor cares to disagree, let's both put a 20 on the table and I'll bring my Parker Hale and take both 20s home with me. That's not to say you can't do it, just that reenacting is hard on a gun that will be used for target/competition work.

Minie Balls, not all are created equal. Due to differing twist rates, manufacturers, etc, you will have to experiment. I suggest getting samples from CWBulletman. He has a page on the Lodgewood website. Know your barrel measurement and get samples to try. In both my Colts and Parker Hales, the RCBS Hogdon is a laser. The Rapine Trashcan also shoots well in the Colts out to 50yds, from there it starts to get unstable and the group goes from 1 big hole at 50yd to 8in at 100. The Lee version does that as well, it's just a fact of the design. The Hogdon doesn't suffer from that issue. Others get great results from the Lyman 575213 or the RCBS version. Again, experiment.

Lube is CRITICAL. You will have to experiment some (but that's part of the fun!) ask 5 different Skirmishers in the NSSA, get 15 different answers. I'm sold on the beeswax/lard from direct experimentation in my guns. No amount of Crisco in my guns will get anywhere near the lard. This last summer with the Scouts shooting some Zouave muskets we brought, on 3 successive open shoots, we ran one musket straight for 48 shots, then 53+ shots and then 43 shots, all without wiping the bore or a fall off in accuracy. Get the load balanced as Minie designed and the gun will run and run and run till you get tired of shooting or run out of ammo.

Molds- just cause a mold is marked at a certain diameter, doesn't mean it actually casts at it and that goes even for high dollar ones. Lee molds in general are only adequate. The only Lee mold I like and use is the "Target Minie" and it's out of production in 58cal. You'll see them on Ebay from time to time. No gun that I own nor any of my fellow competitors will shoot the Lee "Improved Minie". Probably your best starting point is the Lyman 575213 style, RCBS Hogdon or a similar "Old Style" minie.

Welcome to the addiction. I'd encourage you to come over to a North South Skirmish Association match or "skirmish" and see how accurate these guns can be. While I used to be a reenactor, I found shooting live rounds was much much more fun.
 
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James N.

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Welcome to the forums from the host of the Stonewall Jackson Forum and another firearms enthusiast!
 
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poorjack

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One other "reenactorism", watch some Utubes of reenactors "demonstrating" how to shoot live ammo. I've seen several where the guy gets the minie down a little ways then proceeds to use the ramrod like a pile driver pounding home a railroad spike as he beats the minie down the bore. So many things wrong here.

Your load should NEVER be that hard to get down. They didn't have time to pile drive minies home, that's why they were a tad undersized and lubed with natural substances. If you have to pound the minie, then the nose gets deformed and you can kiss accuracy goodbye. The minie is made from soft lead and the ramrod is hard steel. I'm quite sure that type of load would have been avoided during the War. Do NOT mix any type of petroleum based lube with real black powder, the fouling will get hard like cement. Do NOT fill the base of the minie with lube, if you have to do that, your lube isn't in balance with the powder charge/barrel length. I've dug a number out of the backstop with the base still full of crisco.

In the load we used in the Scout project Zouaves. The minie was a RCBS Hogdon sized to .579 as the bores were all right at 580 on the muskets we were using. Powder charge was 45g 3f Schutzen with Schutzen caps. Lube was my 60/40 beeswax/lard mix. The loading process- pour powder, insert minie, 1 swift stroke with the ramrod with a light wrist snap at the end of the stroke, cap, aim, fire. I ran that Zouave on three successive sessions for 48, 53, and 43 shots without wiping. Again, get the system in balance as Minie designed, and it will run for as long as you care to shoot. Accuracy was still good as I had a kid that was purposely shooting the chains on the gongs at 50yds and yeah, he was hitting them.
 
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captaindrew

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Welcome from South Florida and the Reenactors Forum. Looks like you got your live firing questions answered. Try Regimental Quartermaster for a bayonet. For reenacting purposes I like using 60 grains 3F black powder. Make sure you give that Richmond a light coat of oil regularly, the bright finish rusts if you just look at it funny.
 
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WJC

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Welcome! Ya' gotta' love how quickly and thoroughly questions get answered here! We all learn from such questions! I look forward to your perspective in our discussions! Enjoy!
 
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heavydutyco2

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One other "reenactorism", watch some Utubes of reenactors "demonstrating" how to shoot live ammo. I've seen several where the guy gets the minie down a little ways then proceeds to use the ramrod like a pile driver pounding home a railroad spike as he beats the minie down the bore. So many things wrong here.

Your load should NEVER be that hard to get down. They didn't have time to pile drive minies home, that's why they were a tad undersized and lubed with natural substances. If you have to pound the minie, then the nose gets deformed and you can kiss accuracy goodbye. The minie is made from soft lead and the ramrod is hard steel. I'm quite sure that type of load would have been avoided during the War. Do NOT mix any type of petroleum based lube with real black powder, the fouling will get hard like cement. Do NOT fill the base of the minie with lube, if you have to do that, your lube isn't in balance with the powder charge/barrel length. I've dug a number out of the backstop with the base still full of crisco.

In the load we used in the Scout project Zouaves. The minie was a RCBS Hogdon sized to .579 as the bores were all right at 580 on the muskets we were using. Powder charge was 45g 3f Schutzen with Schutzen caps. Lube was my 60/40 beeswax/lard mix. The loading process- pour powder, insert minie, 1 swift stroke with the ramrod with a light wrist snap at the end of the stroke, cap, aim, fire. I ran that Zouave on three successive sessions for 48, 53, and 43 shots without wiping. Again, get the system in balance as Minie designed, and it will run for as long as you care to shoot. Accuracy was still good as I had a kid that was purposely shooting the chains on the gongs at 50yds and yeah, he was hitting them.
Wow thank you so much for this wealth of knowledge I will start researching more once I figure my bore size on what tools and stuff I may need and will most certainly keep you in mind for any more questions thank you so much!
 

heavydutyco2

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Welcome from South Florida and the Reenactors Forum. Looks like you got your live firing questions answered. Try Regimental Quartermaster for a bayonet. For reenacting purposes I like using 60 grains 3F black powder. Make sure you give that Richmond a light coat of oil regularly, the bright finish rusts if you just look at it funny.
Is there any oil yould recommend I appreciate your input!
 
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heavydutyco2

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Thank you all for the warm greetings I'm loving this page already and all the wonderful knowledge it helps alot with not having many people to assist locally even though where I live is quite a ACW history rich place!
 
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