Flintlock Hawken Squirrel Rifle?

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Peregrine

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After reading the post by @markh about his squirrel rifle build, I started thinking about a halfstock lightweight barrel .36 caliber flintlock 'Hawken' squirrel rifle. Does anyone know of someone building something like that? I know their are some people making percussions. That might be a future build!
 

Pietro

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Hawken-pattern rifles are usually cal .45/over, and most .36's appear to be either percussion, or non-Hawken style.

If you can't or don't want to make your own .36 flintlock Hawken from the various required parts, I would opine that there are a few custom makers who will make whatever you want, that's in their wheelhouse.
 

markh

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I'm sure there are good builders out there who would take that on. One issue may be the hooked breech with a flint lock. I know there are several original hooked breech flintlock guns, but I wonder how far the breech plug is threaded into the barrel on them and if the touch hole is angled to accommodate the plug.
 

Sidney Smith

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Traditions flintlocks have hooked breaches. At least the one my grandson has does.
 

plmeek

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One issue may be the hooked breech with a flint lock. I know there are several original hooked breech flintlock guns, but I wonder how far the breech plug is threaded into the barrel on them and if the touch hole is angled to accommodate the plug.
Actually, most original Hawken squirrel rifles aka sporting rifles in percussion had fixed patent breeches. Also, most original Hawken full stock rifles, even in large calibers, also had fixed patent breeches.

I don't see any reason the OP needs to be fixated on a hooked breech for his flintlock. It would actually simplify a lot of things, including locating parts, if he goes with a simple Kentucky style breech for his flintlock.
 

markh

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Actually, most original Hawken squirrel rifles aka sporting rifles in percussion had fixed patent breeches. Also, most original Hawken full stock rifles, even in large calibers, also had fixed patent breeches.

I don't see any reason the OP needs to be fixated on a hooked breech for his flintlock. It would actually simplify a lot of things, including locating parts, if he goes with a simple Kentucky style breech for his flintlock.
Yes, I mentioned the hooked breech because the OP originally referenced the gun I had built and shared on another thread. I used a hooked breech on my percussion rifle. I did so because I wanted it to be easier to clean, particularly after use by my 4H club.

When I was installing the hooked breech on my gun I often wondered about how they worked on flintlocks. I have to wonder if the threads of the plug are no deeper than 1/2" into the barrel to allow for a properly located touch hole.
 

R.J.Bruce

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Yes, I mentioned the hooked breech because the OP originally referenced the gun I had built and shared on another thread. I used a hooked breech on my percussion rifle. I did so because I wanted it to be easier to clean, particularly after use by my 4H club.

When I was installing the hooked breech on my gun I often wondered about how they worked on flintlocks. I have to wonder if the threads of the plug are no deeper than 1/2" into the barrel to allow for a properly located touch hole.
According to several engineers that I have spoken to, it ONLY REQUIRES 3 full threads of engagement to reach maximum strength between a male bolt and a female threaded hole. Assuming that the threads are properly machined to the required tolerances on both the male & female surfaces.

Rice only drills and taps it's barrels 1/2" deep for corresponding flint breech plugs that are supplied by an outside machine shop.

The only need for deeper threads is to accommodate the powder chamber in the various snail drum percussion hooked breech plugs that came into existence after Henry, Manton, Nock, and others invented the powder chamber for flint breech plugs so as to try & speed up the ignition of a flintlock so it could try and compete with a percussion lock.
 
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If you will read through the online Association of Ohio Longrifle Collectors newsletters you will find articles on Hawken rifles that are squirrel-rifle-like flintlocks.
 

plmeek

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When I was installing the hooked breech on my gun I often wondered about how they worked on flintlocks. I have to wonder if the threads of the plug are no deeper than 1/2" into the barrel to allow for a properly located touch hole.
The threaded plugs don't need to be deeper than 1/2".

There are two basic styles of hooked breech systems for flintlocks. Both probably originated in England, but could have also come from France or Germany originally.

The simplest has the hook on the the back of the threaded plug.

These were common on English and better American fowlers but can be adapted to rifles, too.

plug-ef-17-3_1.jpg


This one has a long tang suitable for a Hawken.
plug-fhg-16-3_1.jpg


The actual threaded part of the plug is no different than that of a fixed flint plug and only needs to be about 1/2" long. The vent is drilled as a normal flint setup just in front of the face of the plug.

The other style is an overly simplified version of a Nock's Patent breech which excludes the anti-chamber that Nock developed. They have a deep powder chamber drilled in the face of the plug and into the "false" breech, as the English called them, or the patent breech as they are normally referred to today. The vent is drilled into the patent breech to intersect the powder chamber.

plug-fh-16-3_1.jpg


This is the same as above, just with a slant face where the patent breech joins the standing breech.
plug-lrf-16-3_1.jpg


One of the problems with the patent breech style is that the powder chamber as made is often rather small in diameter and after a few shots, the fouling can build up enough for the powder to bridge off and not fill the powder chamber. If the barrel diameter and thread size is selected correctly, the diameter of the powder chamber can be opened up to just under the bore of the rifle, thus eliminating the powder bridging problem.
 

R.J.Bruce

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The threaded plugs don't need to be deeper than 1/2".

There are two basic styles of hooked breech systems for flintlocks. Both probably originated in England, but could have also come from France or Germany originally.

The simplest has the hook on the the back of the threaded plug.

These were common on English and better American fowlers but can be adapted to rifles, too.

View attachment 86830

This one has a long tang suitable for a Hawken.
View attachment 86831

The actual threaded part of the plug is no different than that of a fixed flint plug and only needs to be about 1/2" long. The vent is drilled as a normal flint setup just in front of the face of the plug.

The other style is an overly simplified version of a Nock's Patent breech which excludes the anti-chamber that Nock developed. They have a deep powder chamber drilled in the face of the plug and into the "false" breech, as the English called them, or the patent breech as they are normally referred to today. The vent is drilled into the patent breech to intersect the powder chamber.

View attachment 86832

This is the same as above, just with a slant face where the patent breech joins the standing breech.
View attachment 86833

One of the problems with the patent breech style is that the powder chamber as made is often rather small in diameter and after a few shots, the fouling can build up enough for the powder to bridge off and not fill the powder chamber. If the barrel diameter and thread size is selected correctly, the diameter of the powder chamber can be opened up to just under the bore of the rifle, thus eliminating the powder bridging problem.
I was mentioning this in another forum recently that the Manton/Nock powder chambers need to be tailored individually to each specific bore so as to match the groove diameter. When the powder chamber is opened up and beveled so that the groove diameter matches the bevel leading into the chamber, most of those clogging problems are solved.

The custom Nock flint breech plug on my faux Hawken .62 caliber longrifle with its Siler lock never got clogged up, and I could shoot all day without having to wipe the bore between shots.
 

Prairieofthedog

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Look up Don Stith,he has Hawken small caliber rifle kits. The Hawken boy's did make these rifles in their time.
 

Prairieofthedog

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Sorry, I see Don Stith mentioned in the other thread about small Hawkens. If you are having problems contacting him,be patient, he is is going thru a pretty bad health problem right now.
 

Flintandsteel

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Here’s the thing…. If you want it, you’ll probably have to build it, or have it built. BUT, it will in no way be a Hawken rifle.
True, squirrel, turkey, and Missouri rifles were made by the Hawken shop in the day. But, they were half stock and percussion.
With all the other styles of rifles that would fill your need, why insist on building a rifle that didn’t exist?
If authenticity doesn’t matter, build what you want, but good luck finding parts.
 
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