First shots with my new to me TC Hawken and daughters TC New Englander

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Well I finally made some time to burn some powder today. Last spring I picked up a used TC Hawken at my LGS and about three weeks ago I won an auction for a used TC New Englander for my daughter. Both are 50 cal and percussion.

I'd say things went well for both but the Hawken was the star of the show today. My daughter had a horse show today so she wasn't able to make it to the range with me. But I needed to see how these rifles shoot as our muzzleloading season is fast approaching.

I set up my targets at 50yds and shot from a bench using my sand bags for a rest. Both rifles required pretty substantial adjustments to the sights as you will see in the pics of the targets. The New Englander only required elevation adjustment while the Hawken required both elevation and windage adjustment. But they walked in nicely.

The load used in both was 80gr of Scheutzen FFG pushing a 320gr TC Maxi-Ball. Overall I'm very pleased with how they grouped, especially the Hawken.

I did chronograph these loads and found it interesting that the longer barreled Hawken generally didn't send the rounds any appreciable amount faster than the New Englander. Also in general the rounds sped up as round count increased.
 

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Here are a couple pics of how the Hawken did.

Also, now that I've managed to get some genuine black powder, all shots went off with zero perceivable delay. 😁 I've had trouble with good ignition using substitutes in the past.

Also of note, this was my first experience firing anything with a double set trigger and holy cow does that take some getting used to!
 

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The go to load I've employed for decades is 65 grains of fffg, whether 355 grain T/C Maxihunters or PRB. This about equals 80 ffg. It surprised me that the velocity out of the short T/C White Mountain Hunter was right there with the 26" barrel Renegade using the conical.

You've a keeper load for the Hawkin. Enjoy a successful season. When younger I could coax that kind of group at 100 yards. These guns are certainly capable of fine accuracy.
 
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For years I stuck with the manufacturers recommended FFG in my 50s. Since joining this forum awhile back and learning from more experienced hands, I'm wanting to get some FFFg to try.
 
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The go to load I've employed for decades is 65 grains of fffg, whether 355 grain T/C Maxihunters or PRB. This about equals 80 ffg. It surprised me that the velocity out of the short T/C White Mountain Hunter was right there with the 26" barrel Renegade using the conical.

You've a keeper load for the Hawkin. Enjoy a successful season. When younger I could coax that kind of group at 100 yards. These guns are certainly capable of fine accuracy.
An old timer years ago said to use 1 1/2 times caliber of 2F with a pre cut patched round ball. This is for a T/C Hawken repro circa 1978. That's 67.5 gr so I shoot 70 gr. With a Lee Shaver mid range Soule vernier tang and a Hadley cup I get .75 inch groups at 25 yards and just under 1.4 inches at 50 yards. I ordered but have not yet installed a Lee Shaver globe front sight with a spirit level. With my 70+ eyes I hope to tighten those groups....She seems very happy with this load
 
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I was always a big fan of T/C New Englanders for hunting guns. That big triggerguard makes it much easier to use with gloves in cold weather deer hunts in Wisconsin.

I have since converted some of them into "Yellow Bird Guns". Named for a character in a series of novels/short stories I wrote. A "Yellow Bird Gun" is basically a short (12" - 9") barreled muzzle-loader. It can be a flintlock or caplock and should have a sling. You carry it slung muzzle down on the non-dominant shoulder with the gun behind you. It comes off and shoulders on the dominant shoulder quickly. Thirty grains of fffg with a round ball is the optimal load in .50 and .54. With the 12 gauge barrel I generally go to fifty grains fffg with either a patched round ball or a shot charge.... generally 6 to 9 .32 to .36 round balls. With such a short barrel, you don't need much powder. My YBG stock has an ebony cap on it as I have a special short starter that serves as a ramrod. Probably the best thing about it is that it is completely legal and requires no registration.

New Englanders are cheap and plentiful. They make good Yellow Bird Guns/Canoe Guns. I can hit empty milk jugs at fifty yards with some sight setups. My shotgun barrel isn't quite so accurate with PRB, but has no sights of any kind, not even a bead. Of course your mileage may vary.
 

OldSmoky1967

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Well I finally made some time to burn some powder today. Last spring I picked up a used TC Hawken at my LGS and about three weeks ago I won an auction for a used TC New Englander for my daughter. Both are 50 cal and percussion.

I'd say things went well for both but the Hawken was the star of the show today. My daughter had a horse show today so she wasn't able to make it to the range with me. But I needed to see how these rifles shoot as our muzzleloading season is fast approaching.

I set up my targets at 50yds and shot from a bench using my sand bags for a rest. Both rifles required pretty substantial adjustments to the sights as you will see in the pics of the targets. The New Englander only required elevation adjustment while the Hawken required both elevation and windage adjustment. But they walked in nicely.

The load used in both was 80gr of Scheutzen FFG pushing a 320gr TC Maxi-Ball. Overall I'm very pleased with how they grouped, especially the Hawken.

I did chronograph these loads and found it interesting that the longer barreled Hawken generally didn't send the rounds any appreciable amount faster than the New Englander. Also in general the rounds sped up as round count increased.
Fouling decreases the diameter of the bore, hence faster speeds compared to a clean v=barrel.
 
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