Converting a Kibler SMR kit to percussion

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rangerzdral

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Has anyone ever converted a Kibler kit to percussion. I know a few of the challenges. 1. It’s rough to go from flint to percussion. 2. Kibler uses a white lightning liner and threads are different. 3. I’d have to find the exact lock to fit since it already inletted or modify the existing lock, or by the universal square lock and have my cousin the machinist cut the back to match the Kibler lock. Hoping someone has done this before and can tell me if it’s worth trying to do it for the guy. He’s a fellow Veteran buddy of mine and got this gun in a benefit event and dislikes flintlocks and he either wants it converted or sell it and get have percussion made.
 
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Anything is possible, BUT:

2. Chambers uses 1/4 x 32 or 5/16 x 32 for the larger barrels in his liners. The 1/4" size is too small for a drum. You'll have to make a drum or drill out the hole to a larger thread.. Most of the drums are 5/16 x 24 or larger.
3. Kibler makes his own locks. So, there may not be a direct replacement. You may end up converting one of his flintlocks, filing the new lockplate to fit, or changing the lock inlet size up or down.

I have converted a couple of non-KIbler rifles. I used the existing plate and cut off the pan to fit the new drum and hammer. The plate is supposed to support the drum with a close fit to avoid fatiguing the drum threads. It isn't that hard, but it is more than changing out the parts.
 

rangerzdral

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Anything is possible, BUT:

2. Chambers uses 1/4 x 32 or 5/16 x 32 for the larger barrels in his liners. The 1/4" size is too small for a drum. You'll have to make a drum or drill out the hole to a larger thread.. Most of the drums are 5/16 x 24 or larger.
3. Kibler makes his own locks. You may end up converting one of his flintlocks, filing the new lockplate to fit, or changing the lock inlet size up or down.

I have converted a couple of non-KIbler rifles. I used the existing plate and cut off the pan to fit the new drum and hammer. The plate is supposed to support the drum with a close fit to avoid fatiguing the drum threads. It isn't that hard, but it is more than changing out the parts.
Yes sir, my cousin own his own machine shop and can modify the existing lock to whatever I need - this is likely the way I’d do it.
 

stikshooter

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Has anyone ever converted a Kibler kit to percussion. I know a few of the challenges. 1. It’s rough to go from flint to percussion. 2. Kibler uses a white lightning liner and threads are different. 3. I’d have to find the exact lock to fit since it already inletted or modify the existing lock, or by the universal square lock and have my cousin the machinist cut the back to match the Kibler lock. Hoping someone has done this before and can tell me if it’s worth trying to do it for the guy. He’s a fellow Veteran buddy of mine and got this gun in a benefit event and dislikes flintlocks and he either wants it converted or sell it and get have percussion made.
Tell him sell it ,going backwards on locks costly with no advantage and near impossible for the average (home gun smith)
 
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I have planned this out. First, the kibler lock is a piece of art. It would be a pitty to cut it up, into a caplock.

I did this exact conversion to a TC a long time ago. The TC flintlock was junks so it made sense back then.

I would not make permanent alterations to the Kibler rifle. You will not find any lock that fits the mortice. I would make a lock from scratch. I might be a side slapper. The liner is 5/16 x 32 tpi. A nipple bushing would need to be made. If a drum and conventional lock was used then it would need to be a drum with 5/16 x 32 threads.

IN the end, the Kibler flintlocks are as good as a flintlock gets. The flints last forever. The reliability is as good or better than a caplock. The lock time is comparable to caplock. Caps are hard to find right now. I have not converted one. I talked myself out of it.
 
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They converted flintlocks to percussion back in the 1830's lol, just do what they did
If you really want it to be percussion.

Saw the pan off the lock
Make a drum that fits the threads for the vent so it is supported by the lock plate.
Install a nipple
Either make a new hammer, or modify the flint cock to be a hammer... look up the thread "crude conversions" here on the forum.

And bam, converted percussion gun. Also, don't forget tube-locks, those conversions can be done in a way that you can convert it back and forth fairly easily, since it uses most of the flint hardware.
 
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If it's an earlier Kibler, it's got a Chambers Golden Age lock. The Golden Age is also available in percussion. The two lock plates are the same and will fit the lock mortice. The touch hole liner is 1/4 inch, so easy to drill out to receive a 5/16 drum. Very doable by a competent machinist.
If it is one of Jim's fine locks your only option is to cut the pan off, replace the hammer and modify it to accept a drum, also very doable by said competent machinist. Ether way this can be done without devaluing the rifle and most folks would never know it wasn't always a cap gun.
 

rangerzdral

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I appreciate the input guys. I am not the gun owner (yet) if he decided to sell it I will be. I'm just the guy he asked if it can be done and how much. But how he got the gun is the sentimental part that he's not wanting to sell. I keep telling him shooting a rocklock takes time to adjust and get the hang of it. But too many years of shooting modern Cf's has him thinking it's the gun and not him. Cheers Gents
 
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Yes sir, my cousin own his own machine shop and can modify the existing lock to whatever I need - this is likely the way I’d do it.
You’re going to have to come up with a proper hammer also. One more thing - depending on the barrel diameter and caliber, there may not be enough barrel wall to support a drum. I would sell it and buy or build a proper percussion rifle.
good luck
Kevin
 
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If it's an earlier Kibler, it's got a Chambers Golden Age lock. The Golden Age is also available in percussion. The two lock plates are the same and will fit the lock mortice...
Neither one of Kibler’s kits came with a Chambers flintlock that was also available in percussion. The round faced lock and the late Ketland are only available as flintlocks.
Kevin
 

Siringo

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Neither one of Kibler’s kits came with a Chambers flintlock that was also available in percussion. The round faced lock and the late Ketland are only available as flintlocks.
Kevin
You are correct Kevin. I spoke with Jim about this a couple of years ago when I bought my first SMR. There are NO equivalent Chambers Locks to switch back and forth.
 
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