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proper worm and ball puller for M1861 contract muskets

Discussion in 'Civil War Weapons and Ammunition' started by 63springfield, Mar 1, 2015.

  1. 63springfield

    63springfield Private

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    Hello again , Pics are from epay and are any proper for M1861 muskets ? First worm is listed as surplus 1855 . Second is listed as surplus 1863 and third looks like second with no real description . Ball puller is listed as just ,58 cal . Thanks Dave 55 worm.jpg 63 worm.jpg worm 1.jpg puller 1.jpg puller 2.jpg
     

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  3. Jobe Holiday

    Jobe Holiday First Sergeant

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    The 2 photos of the ball screw, with the rounded shoulders, show the 1855/1861 model ball screw. The previous photos are properly identified, as I recall without digging out the books!
    J.
     
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  4. FrankN

    FrankN Private

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    image.jpg Here's the combo tool and worm I got for my Bridesburg. I got them from S&S firearms. Lodgewood, Shilorelics, Civil War Relic Man and mid Tennessee relics are good sources. Here's a link to a page with a list of reputable CW dealers.
    http://www.civilwardealers.com

    Frank
     
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  5. Patrick H

    Patrick H Captain

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    Please allow me to post a related question to your thread. Would using a ball puller be considered a safe way to unload an old firearm today? Some of you (Jobe in particular) know that I have an 1842 Harper's Ferry which I believe to be loaded. All I know for certain is that a rod, inserted at the muzzle, stops about 1.5 or 2" short of the nipple. The breech plug is completely frozen in place and so is the nipple. I've known about ball pullers for a long time and I believe replicas are made. Now....I'm not going to try it. But I might look for a muzzle loading enthusiast who would try it for me...unless it's too risky a thing to ask of anyone.
     
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  6. 63springfield

    63springfield Private

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    Jobe , Thanks again for the good info . FrankN Thanks and I have bought stuff from S&S and was very happy with them . They have a good selection of different size , weight and style of Minnie bullets and I intend to deer hunt with the shortened 63 type 1 so bullet experimentation is in order . I went with the second worm pictured above or 63 type as my gun is 63-64 dated . Like the looks of it and he took my $30 offer . Important part is knowing what ones to look for . Patrick H I asked a gunsmith buddy about your issue and he said they made a puller out of plumbing pipe using a cap with a bolt welded to it as a handle and a large sheet metal screw welded into the hole on the inner end . Make it long enough and use another piece of pipe over the main one and you have a hillbilly slide hammer . Guess it works well . He didn't think you would have any issues with doing the removal . Pour a little oil in the bore to insure there are no sparks .
     
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  7. Patrick H

    Patrick H Captain

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    Thanks for checking on this and responding!
     
  8. rob63

    rob63 Sergeant

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    FWIW, I have had several muskets that had the exact same issue and I successfully used ball pullers and worms to get them "unloaded." In each case, my fears ended up being unfounded, they were not loaded, just full of debris. One of them had a chewing gum wrapper mixed in with the dirt! Another had an insect nest.
     
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  9. Patrick H

    Patrick H Captain

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    Rob, I've been told that by others, too. I know it could be something harmless in there. I just think it's best to ASSUME it's loaded until finding out otherwise, and I know you agree about being cautious. Many thanks for your response.
     
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  10. frankconrad

    frankconrad Sergeant

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    When I was Gunsmithing in he sixtys I removed loads, Screendoor springs Ball bearings paper, unknown things.
     
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  11. Patrick H

    Patrick H Captain

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    I apologize for continually getting this thread off track. I just thought I'd tell everyone that I have been cleaning the Harpers Ferry musket mentioned above. I reassembled it late this afternoon. As a final check, I wrapped a little painter's tape around the ram rod tip to prevent a spark, and then slid it down the barrel. It went in all the way to the breech plug! It has stopped short by nearly two inches for as long as I can remember, but it went all the way in today. No load in there. I must have been hitting some rust or dirt or other crud on the inside of the barrel wall previously. I can't explain it, but at least I know there's no ball and powder in there. Thanks to all for the encouragement. Now....back to your regularly scheduled programming.....
     

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