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Flints

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Joined
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What is the best flint and where to get them for a Traditions Trapper flintlock pistol. I used to have a few but I got rid of them. Now all I have is what came with the pistol. They were just odds and ends that were given to me. Since I didn't have a flintlock anything at the time. So now I want to have some spares. Don't know anything about them. I can knap flint but don't know if this stuff we have around here is any good for that. Central Texas, Abilene area. Don't want to try it and wind up messing up the frizzen.
 
What is the best flint and where to get them for a Traditions Trapper flintlock pistol. I used to have a few but I got rid of them. Now all I have is what came with the pistol. They were just odds and ends that were given to me. Since I didn't have a flintlock anything at the time. So now I want to have some spares. Don't know anything about them. I can knap flint but don't know if this stuff we have around here is any good for that. Central Texas, Abilene area. Don't want to try it and wind up messing up the frizzen.
Give it a go and find out how it sparks. Your not going to mess up a decent frizzen with any chert and if it's George Towne which I'm told is native to Texas you may have some very good gun flint material.
 
I get my flints from Track of the Wolf. They have both English flints and French flints. I prefer the French. I don't think you're going to harm your frizzen with any DIY flints you can knap yourself, so long as it's got a nice straight and sharp edge. If it sparks, it should be good to go.
 
I get my flints from Track of the Wolf. They have both English flints and French flints. I prefer the French. I don't think you're going to harm your frizzen with any DIY flints you can knap yourself, so long as it's got a nice straight and sharp edge. If it sparks, it should be good to go.
That's what I was thinking of asking. I don't know the difference between English or French. Or whatever else is out there.
 
That's what I was thinking of asking. I don't know the difference between English or French. Or whatever else is out there.
Black English and French Amber flints are like Coke and Pepsi or Ford and Chevy. Some prefer English , some prefer French, both preform the same more or less.

In my limited experience and using CVA and Traditions guns, I prefer the English Black in size 5/8" x 3/4" from TOW.
 
What is the best flint and where to get them for a Traditions Trapper flintlock pistol. I used to have a few but I got rid of them. Now all I have is what came with the pistol. They were just odds and ends that were given to me. Since I didn't have a flintlock anything at the time. So now I want to have some spares. Don't know anything about them. I can knap flint but don't know if this stuff we have around here is any good for that. Central Texas, Abilene area. Don't want to try it and wind up messing up the frizzen.
Truth is I make better flint than I can buy and from left over flakes (debatage they call it ) from point making of heat treated chert. Flat flakes make far better gun flint than does the hump back jobs folks are forced to purchase.
I remember being told that heat treated chert would not make good gun flint but being of a curious bent I had to test this notion and it proved to be hog wash. Heat treated chert works as well or better than the black English I was buying from TOTW. I have found that Novaculite does not work as well though as it seems quite brittle in any I have tested. The Keokuk from Oklahoma seems to work fine along with George Town and several others I have tested that folks sent me sample of.
I always ground the hump off purchased flints on a green emery wheel that is used for sharpening carbide tools. Flat flints are far easier to secure in the cock jaws and eliminate the need for bevel up or bevel down hog wash.
The need of bevel up or down of the flint usually means the cock jaws need adjusting to the frizzen arch swing. A flat flint will now work perfectly and last longer. The periodic edge raising of when pressure flaking to sharpen will also keep the strike zone against the frizzen moving both upward and laterally as each new row of flakes presents new impact points in different positions. When the edge gets as high as it will go from pressure flaking , flip the flint and start over from the bottom until it is to short to use further.
Keep in mind that no matter what your method of flint edge sharpening it's only the high points that are cutting frizzen steel and generating sparks.
 
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Truth is I make better flint than I can buy and from left over flakes (debatage they call it ) from point making of heat treated chert. Flat flakes make far better gun flint than does the hump back jobs folks are forced to purchase.
I remember being told that heat treated chert would not make good gun flint but being of a curious bent I had to test this notion and it proved to be hog wash. Heat treated chert works as well or better than the black English I was buying from TOTW. I have found that Novaculite does not work as well though as it seems quite brittle in any I have tested. The Keokuk from Oklahoma seems to work fine along with George Town and several others I have tested that folks sent me sample of.
I always ground the hump off purchased flints on a green emery wheel that is used for sharpening carbide tools. Flat flints are far easier to secure in the cock jaws and eliminate the need for bevel up or bevel down hog wash.
We have at least 3 kinds here from hill outcroppings. One is black, (the ones picked up on surface have a white coating of something) and they are real hard. Ive had to cook those. Another is what I call medium, some are not so hard but cooking them won't hurt. One is really nice to work. And its mostly a whitish color.
All come from hill outcroppings. And there is evidence of many human use. Like quarries.
I just got through making one and it works great. So I guess I'm not needing any anymore. I'll just make my own.
 

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There you go, a man who will never be out of gun flints again and will be very popular with fellow flint gun shooters ! 😄
And most all are flat. Took me less than 5 minutes to work one. I haven't made any dart points or arrowheads in years. I found my stash this morning. Might just get back into it. There's some thick glass I'd forgotten I had also. I don't have any projectiles to show. I gave them all away to family and friends. Didn't keep a one.
It's a good pastime.
 
And most all are flat. Took me less than 5 minutes to work one. I haven't made any dart points or arrowheads in years. I found my stash this morning. Might just get back into it. There's some thick glass I'd forgotten I had also. I don't have any projectiles to show. I gave them all away to family and friends. Didn't keep a one.
It's a good pastime.
Yeah, being a glazier by trade I have a never ending supply of glass to knap but it makes lousy working points or gun flint. Sure makes beautiful points for looking at or giving away as presents though .
 
Yeah, being a glazier by trade I have a never ending supply of glass to knap but it makes lousy working points or gun flint. Sure makes beautiful points for looking at or giving away as presents though .
Yep, that they do. I got some black obsidian at a powwow once. Made a couple 8 inch spear points out of it. My son brought me some thick glass he found. Was kinda brittle but I managed to get a 6 inch point out of it. I used to frequent old dump grounds and old long gone houses and pick up colored glass. I have an old what I think beer bottle bottom. I'll check it out later and maybe get a pretty brown point out of it.
 
Any of the Balcones chert is suitable, I use everything from Georgetown flint to Pedernales rootbeer chert to Guadalupe and Llano river gravel cobbles, particularly amoebas. I use thin flakes from the rough bifacing operation or dedicated blade cores to strike off blades for making gunflints. Drive a stake in a stump and trim three sides of the flake into a gunflint with a chisel-edged hammer while the flake is upside down on the stake. Always orient around a flat, clean, naturally sharp flake edge for your striking edge since it will wear the best and it isn't practical to pressure flake an edge to such a thin angle. Flat bottom and single ridge near the back of the top is my preference.
 
all flint is chert but not all chert is flint
here is the way I tell people
1 does it scratch glass hardness 5 chert 7
2does it spark use the flat of a file
3 can you make gun flint size does it cleave into useable gun flints
4 with safety glasses on put in a lock and see if it shatters (do several times, some chert/flint is to brittle)
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The only difference between chert and flint is color, flint is black or nearly black and chert tends to be white, gray, or pink and can be either plain or banded. Quartz family.
I have found some black that is almost impossible to work. Its very hard "dense?". There's an area not far from me where it is found. I have "cooked" some and it came out good. I eventually went back to the white.
 
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