- Feb 13, 2021
- Reaction score
- Johnstown Colorado
I bought my Brown Bess Carbine, maybe 15 to 20 years ago as a kit from Dixie Gunworks for $200.00, on close-out. I put the kit together and have used it ever since.I see a lot of you folks use Brown Bess's , nothing wrong with that ,They are fine Muskets. The question is why ? I know the Bess was used in by some American troops in the Revolution .
The Charleville's are more authentically American as they were used by the French allies and are the firearm which was copied/ evolved into US 1816 flintlock musket and on to the the Springfield smoothbore and rifle muskets . Surely the Committee of Safety musket would be more HC for Revolutionary war or 1812 war reenactors . I have sold 2 different COS muskets , both were well made, both were different enough to be easily differentiated from a Bess . Me? I'll keep shooting my 1777 Charleville . Just wondering .View attachment 121124
For most of the time that I've used my Bess, it’s been treated as an 11 gauge shotgun. Lots of small game hunting and clay pigeon shooting.
I've taken two deer, many many geese, pheasants, doves and gobs of rabbits and squirrels with this little pot-bellied Bess. Prior to my Brown Bess purchase, I was strictly a percussion muzzleloader. I started shooting blackpowder back in the mid-70’s, with a .50 calibre CVA Mountain Rifle that I bought from a pawnshop when I was 12 or 13…learning how to properly use a RockLock, has been a wonderful experience. My flintlock collection has blossomed and my Bess Carbine is still one of my most treasured firearms.
I would say that if you truly want to learn how to shoot and operate a flintlock, a smoothbore musket is a great beginners gun. As long as the frizzen is properly hardened, that big rock in that big lock is going to teach you so much about maintaining your flint, properly filling your pan, ignition, touch-hole maintenance, different tricks for different weather conditions. Flintlocks are a level beyond percussion, all learned over years of experience and application.
Success breeds success. The larger lock on my Bess is so much easier to use than the smaller and finickier locks on some of my other flinters. I learned the fundamentals with my Bess. So yeah, the Brown Bess, or any well made large calibre musket is a great way to understand and appreciate the mystic of the RockLock.