Flint leather or lead

Discussion in 'Flintlock Rifles' started by Kilted Cowboy, Apr 1, 2019.

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  1. Apr 2, 2019 #21

    Kansas Jake

    Kansas Jake

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    I like the old leather jacket idea. Often at some thrift stores they can be bought for around $5. Then you have some larger pieces for other projects such as a bullet bag etc.
     
  2. Jul 7, 2019 #22

    Scoper05

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    Ive never had any luck with lead.
     
  3. Jul 8, 2019 #23

    kkmemmott

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    I have found premade lead from October Country for flintlocks. It's worked real good for me. However, in reading some of the other comments here, it sounds like leather will do just as good.
     
  4. Jul 8, 2019 #24

    sawyer04

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    Yep, especially the tongue leather for flints.
     
  5. Jul 8, 2019 #25

    hanshi

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    I've used leather from old shoes, pocketbooks and even buckskin. Mostly, though, I've a small supply of scrap leather I bought years ago and use that. Got it from an individual who works leather.
     
  6. Jul 9, 2019 #26

    Howard Pippin

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    I was also curious about using lead, so after pouring some round balls, I just took a small dipper full and poured it across the top of my welding table where it instantly Look like an oblong pancake. I took a pair of scissors, and cut it into strips and it worked reasonably well for holding flints. I couldn't tell much difference, but I didn't have to tighten it as often when I was shooting, once it had settled in. If You were in a pinch, it would be better than cutting up the shoes you were wearing.
    Squint
     
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  7. Jul 10, 2019 #27

    Griz44Mag

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    Just to try the lead, I took a 75 cal round ball and hammered it until it was flat and big enough to use, trimmed it and it seem to work just fine.
     
  8. Jul 10, 2019 #28

    Artificer

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    Larry,

    Thank you for posting your article, which I read with great interest.

    I have a lot more experience with greater numbers of rounds fired with musket locks than civilian style locks, though I have owned and shoot both. Since reenactors often/usually shoot more to much more often with blank rounds than some/many others shoot with live rounds (with perhaps the exceptions of some dedicated target shooters), I thought this information may be interesting.

    My own (non scientific) experience with Pedersoli and Miroku Brown Bess locks have shown that once the combination of proper size flint and proper thickness leather or lead wrapping is found, there is little to no notable difference between the two types of flint wraps. However, it is really important that I mentioned once the proper thickness of leather or lead wrapping is found.

    As the Unit Artificer/Armorer for an AWI reenactment group, I found some to perhaps a simple majority of our members did not really understand this. Further they did not understand how to find the proper length/type of flint and how different thicknesses of leather or flint wraps affect where the flint sits in relationship to the frizzen, which definitely affects how well the lock sparks.

    Since I am also an amateur leather worker and have all kinds/thicknesses of scrap leather, I would try different types of leather with different flint sizes, to see what combination worked best in each lock a member brought to me. Once I found the best combination, I would give some leather wraps to the individual and inform him/her what size flint to use. After a while, I went so far as to cut a small piece of the leather I had used and attach it to a note card that recorded the flint size for each member's musket, in case they later forgot the information.

    Gus
     
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  9. Jul 10, 2019 #29

    Artificer

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    I am not trying to speak for Jim Chambers and don't know him personally. I do know he voids any warranty on his locks when a person uses lead to wraps for their flints.

    I believe Jim does this because the added weight to the Cock when using a lead wrap over a leather wrap, causes more and faster damage to the "stop" on the side of the Cock and where the tumbler hits the bridle inside the lock. This is not as noticeable with the large size Military Locks as it is on the smaller civilian locks, which are most of the locks Jim Chambers sells. Also, if the lead wrap is thick enough, it can/will slow down the lock time on a civilian flint lock enough to be noticeably slower. So I don't use lead flint wraps in "civilian size" locks.

    Gus
     
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  10. Jul 10, 2019 #30

    Eterry

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    My dad never let a pair of old leather shoes leave the house without cutting out the tongue. He used it for packing material in hand pumps, and anything else that needed thin leather. Comes from growing up in the depression.

    A friend used cowboy boot tops to make bullet pouches; cut one ear off, fold over the other, stitch the bottom.

    Last month I found some used leather at the local Goodwill store in the form of old belts. They were 4 for a dollar.

    A friend uses a Chamois cloth to wrap his flints, but i think that's a little expensive. He was kind enough to cut off a nice sized piece and gave to me. I cut a small piece off and my flint is currently residing there.
     
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  11. Jul 10, 2019 #31

    NorthFork

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    Any of the regular suppliers carry the leather and lead wraps. Possibles Shop, Log Cabin Shop, Dixie Gun Works, October Country, Track of the Wolf, etc. However it's easy to make your own from a lead ball or leather scraps. I use lead in all of my working flintlocks. It's what they came with from the factory and is what the factory recommends. The one Chambers lock I own (and it's not installed currently in a rifle) would use leather as Mr. Chambers does not recommend the use of lead. You should check with the manufacturer of your lock first as to what they recommend as they may not like the use of one or the other. I have tried leather in my flintlocks and stopped using it as lead seemed to work better for me.
     
  12. Jul 10, 2019 #32

    Nyckname

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    It's probably cheaper from https://www.rotometals.com

    Yet even less expensive, some plumbers still use sheet lead for various applications. They'll sell you the scraps for pennies, if they don't just give it to you.
     
  13. Jul 11, 2019 #33

    GREENSWLDE

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    Lead or Leather ?? Lt. Colonel Peter Hawker,in his 6th Edition of Instructions TYSmen 1830 covers Flint Guns and Detinators.(Percussion guns as we know them). He recomends that flints are mounted in Leather .Do not use lead as it is too rigid and adds weight which can cause slowness and possible breakage of the cock by being stopped too sharply on the top of the lock plate.Somewhere he also suggests "cutting a small "V" in the leather where it is folded at the back of the flint to let it bear against the Cock screw to save any softness in the strike.He also says the flint should be mounted Flat Side Up..He must have known his Flinters pretty well as he spent most of his life using them as there was little else reliable until about 1825.
    These are All Hawker's thoughts not mine.I have only followed his advise since 1963.
     
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  14. Jul 11, 2019 #34

    GREENSWLDE

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    Interesting to see the engraving of the Gunners setting out in the frontice piece of the 10 edition of Hawker.This doesn't appear in either the 6th or 7th edition where this is a plate shewing Hawker with Joe Manton,Spinney the Rat catcher (on a Donkey) together with other Guns and mounted markers.

    OLD DOG..
     
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  15. Jul 11, 2019 #35

    Sparkitoff

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    I spoke to L&R Locks just a few days ago about this very thing. Mine is an RPL lock. They stated they prefer leather (and flint with bevel up). They did say to try lead (and bevel down) and if it happened to create obviously more sparks it would be okay to use lead or bevel down or both. When asked if there was any practical or scientific reason for their recommendations, they said in their long term experience the combo of leather and bevel up produced more sparks more often with their locks. They said the percentage of getting most efficiency is greatest with that combo but not to totally rule out other configurations and even encouraged trying them to make my own determination. No warranty issues either way.
     
  16. Jul 11, 2019 #36

    1911tex

    1911tex

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    Lead sheet...go to the flint lock department at Home Depot; that's the shingle roofing section, you can find lead roof chimney flashing used to duct air from bathrooms, etc. One cheap unit will supply lead for a 1000 flints......
     
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  17. Jul 13, 2019 #37

    Olde Goat

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    I've used both. Prefer leather. I think of it as a spring lock washer. The leather seems to have more flex holding the flint. It "springs back". Lead does not. So I find it lets the flint move after a few uses. Seems to take less torque on the jaws to hold the flint.

    Had not heard of the "v" at the back of the flint! Have to try that.
     
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  18. Jul 15, 2019 at 3:29 PM #38

    GREENSWLDE

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    Re-reading Artificer's Post No.28. I go along with his suggestion that many flint shooters have no idea of the accurate geonemetery that had taken generations to develope the lock of the 1750's to the lock we shoot to-day. Hawker preffered his late flint guns by the Mantons to early cap guns.
    A long time ago I was given a hand full of flints from a calico bag in a gun room with several flint guns in the racks. I shot 2 of them(both of them John Mantons)in company with the Gaffer, His keeper,Chalky and another MLAGB friend. We hedge-rowed several hundered acres for grey partridges only for a double Click-Click at the last covey of the day.
    From that hand full and Hawker I learned enough to build locks for me and many others that have won a number of World medals. My own in 1947. The first modern Worlds in
    Germany.
     
  19. Jul 19, 2019 at 5:31 AM #39

    MSW

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    Pletch, your study is still up (I checked the link) I did one (although much less comprehensive, and without your most excellent photography) and came to essentially the same conclusion. If you weigh a leather flint wrap and take the difference in comparison to lead, it's really not that much. I was testing with (if I remember correctly) a Thompson Center Renegade lock. On one occasion, going from one flint to a different one was more than the difference in weight from lead to leather.

    I use the remnants of an old handbag which I bought at the local 'thrift store' for about three bucks. The clerk gave me the fisheye (what's a sixty odd year old white conservative guy doing buying a handbag - especially a cheap one?) so without prompting him I told him it was for a flintlock.

    blank look … he asked 'do you want paper or plastic?

    "you mean, do I want to put the bag into another bag?"

    yessir


    "both. I wanna waste some oil and kill some trees all at the same time."


    huh?


    never mind, i'll just put the bag under my arm and cruise out of here as though it was a completely normal thing ...
     
  20. Jul 19, 2019 at 6:54 AM #40

    Blogman

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    Hahahaha, I would seriously do that very same thing. :D:rolleyes:
     

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