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Login Name Post: Two Groove Rifling/Belted Balls        (Topic#255261)
Marc Adamchek 
54 Cal.
Posts: 1590
02-24-11 01:46 AM - Post#963354    


I have an opportunity to buy an old percussion rifle with 2 grrove rifling. Barrels with this were intended to be loaded with a Belted Ball to fit ini the grooves for better contact and accuracy.

Can regular round balls (without the "belt") be shot in these rifles with any degree of accuracy?

 
tac 
62 Cal.
Posts: 2783
02-24-11 03:35 AM - Post#963361    

    In response to Marc Adamchek

  • Marc Adamchek Said:
I have an opportunity to buy an old percussion rifle with 2 grrove rifling. Barrels with this were intended to be loaded with a Belted Ball to fit ini the grooves for better contact and accuracy.

Can regular round balls (without the "belt") be shot in these rifles with any degree of accuracy?




Yes indeed.

If you call 'none' a degree, that is.

You did say 'any'.

tac
Supporter of the Cape Meares Lighthouse Restoration Fund

 
dyemaker 
50 Cal.
Posts: 1260
02-24-11 05:02 AM - Post#963364    

    In response to Marc Adamchek

As I recall James Purdey made some rifles with a winged projectile and two grooves. I have no clue about the accuracy of this. The Brunswick rifle was one that used belted balls. I think this replaced the Baker rifle. Again I don't know about the accuracy but I doubt it was very good at all. On this page are examples of the belted Brunswick balls. The author is mistaken about them being for the Baker rifle. The unbelted .60 caliber roundball neatly wrapped in leather is for the Baker rifle. Sorry, I did not answer your question.

Link

 
dyemaker 
50 Cal.
Posts: 1260
02-24-11 06:04 AM - Post#963370    

    In response to dyemaker

Sorry, misread the question. I doubt it because of the poor seal and the friction involved. Then again, i'm not qualified to answer anyways. Someone please stop me.

 
Dan Phariss 
70 Cal.
Posts: 4622
Dan Phariss
02-24-11 08:25 AM - Post#963404    

    In response to Marc Adamchek

  • Marc Adamchek Said:
I have an opportunity to buy an old percussion rifle with 2 grrove rifling. Barrels with this were intended to be loaded with a Belted Ball to fit ini the grooves for better contact and accuracy.

Can regular round balls (without the "belt") be shot in these rifles with any degree of accuracy?



There is a good chance the twist is too fast for a conventional patched ball.
Jeff Tanner makes belted ball moulds. He provides fast service and the moulds are good. You will need to send a cast of the bore for a belted mould.
http://www.jt-bullet-moulds.co.uk/moulds.htm
The rifle should be properly proved before being put into service.
Dan

 
Marc Adamchek 
54 Cal.
Posts: 1590
02-24-11 09:03 AM - Post#963415    

    In response to Dan Phariss

Thanks to all. Yeah, I read W.Greener last night, the section on belted balls and 2 groove rifling. Basically you've gotta have the belted balls, ones that fit exactly, to get good accuracy. Regular round balls just fly off into space.

And yes, the Brunswick rifle was mentioned, as well as the Baker.

Depressing..........

 
Josh Smith 
45 Cal.
Posts: 906
02-24-11 10:24 AM - Post#963437    

    In response to Marc Adamchek

The Russians thought this was a good idea, but poorly implemented.

They took the rifle, but left the ball.

They then came up with a conical projectile for it. If you are familiar with wire splices and wing nut connectors, well, it looked a lot like one of those.

All accounts had it as very accurate.

As memory serves, this rifle immediately predated the Berdan and Berdan II rifles, which were the first breechloaders adopted by the Czar's army.

I am in the process of trying to find a picture of one of these leaden winged projectiles for your viewing pleasure.

Josh

 
tac 
62 Cal.
Posts: 2783
02-24-11 10:39 AM - Post#963448    

    In response to Marc Adamchek

  • Marc Adamchek Said:
Regular round balls just fly off into space.

Depressing..........




Told ya so.

But hey, whaddo I know, eh?

tac
Supporter of the Cape Meares Lighthouse Restoration Fund

 
RedFeather 
50 Cal.
Posts: 1226
02-24-11 04:50 PM - Post#963623    

    In response to Marc Adamchek

Years ago, and elderly gentleman used to bring some old muzzle loaders to the local small gun show. One, which I wish I had then had enough money ($800) to buy was a belted ball rifle of about .38. What set it apart was it used a loading tap near the breech. Open the tap, insert ball, roll closed. Might have had a powder chamber in it, as well. Was a very nice piece.

 
Dan Phariss 
70 Cal.
Posts: 4622
Dan Phariss
02-24-11 08:32 PM - Post#963732    

    In response to Marc Adamchek

  • Marc Adamchek Said:
Thanks to all. Yeah, I read W.Greener last night, the section on belted balls and 2 groove rifling. Basically you've gotta have the belted balls, ones that fit exactly, to get good accuracy. Regular round balls just fly off into space.

And yes, the Brunswick rifle was mentioned, as well as the Baker.

Depressing..........



Aside from a few, most British makers were extremely rifle challenged by 1840 or so.
Even after making the Baker rifle with its slow twist and the testing that went into it many convinced themselves that the bigger the ball the faster the twist had to be.
The reverse is true of course.
This lead to stripping and poor accuracy with anything but light to extremely light loads.
Thus to overcome the self-inflicted problem someone invented the belted ball.
Americans never bought into this foolishness. And some British makers still made usable rifles. But most while nicely accurate were so deficient in velocity unless using the belted ball that many hunters in Africa used smoothbore for really heavy/dangerous game since the ranges were generally pretty short anyway.
See "The Sporting Rifle and its Projectiles" by James Forsythe, its downloadable from google books or some such. There are a few print versions available from John Baird's reprint as well but I don't know how pricey they are. I got mine when they were printed.

Dan

 
Marc Adamchek 
54 Cal.
Posts: 1590
02-25-11 06:14 PM - Post#964131    

    In response to Josh Smith

Josh - no need, I've seen them. In fact, if I buy this rifle I'll get about 10 of them. They look like little rocket ships from 50's movies!

 
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