Lock Bolts

Muzzleloading Forum

Help Support Muzzleloading Forum:

Sidney Smith

54 Cal.
Joined
Feb 17, 2019
Messages
1,770
Reaction score
1,619
The second lock bolt is not necessary but does complete the look of a lock. My TVM Lancaster has a fake front lock bolt that only goes into the stock about 3/8ths of an inch. It was in their instruction sheet to do it that way.

Now my squirrel rifle has an actual front lock bolt, and I had some clearance issues with the ramrod, so depending upon the stock thickness, you may or may not have clearance problems.
 
Joined
Oct 10, 2004
Messages
4,130
Reaction score
4,935
Location
Florence Alabama
I have one lock bolt on all my southern flint rifles, it is uncommon to find two on the originals. My Lancaster style rifle have two, it was uncommon to find one on the originals.

One will work just fine if your lock inletting is tight, I don't think a wood screw in the place of the front bolt is all that uncommon.
 

LRB

75 Cal.
Joined
Aug 25, 2003
Messages
6,134
Reaction score
734
Most percussion locks seem to have but one cross bolt. Oddly, most flintlocks commonly have two. Common percussion locks cause a scissor like squeeze pressure shock to the wood in front of the bolster and above the forward lock plate, and many antique percussion rifles are missing this piece of wood, or have repairs in that zone, so one would think that a percussion lock would need a second bolt more than a flintlock. A well tuned flintlock with balanced springs cause little to no pressure in that vulnerable area of the stock. Such a lock will barely shift if tripped off being hand held, whereas a percussion lock will be much more noticed. Just my opinion, a common flintlock only needs one bolt to retain it, but a wood screw faked bolt for the front will help secure the side plate more. One common, and not invalid argument would be two bolts, because that's the way most flintlock rifles were made. As far as strength, the second cross bolt is not necessary in a common FL hunting rifle.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jul 6, 2021
Messages
16
Reaction score
54
Location
Miller County, Arkansas
Alrighty, thank you so much guys. I most likely will not be putting it in then. I’m already feeling insecure and self conscious about the entire build. The last thing I need right now is to screw that up
 

Flintandsteel

40 Cal.
Joined
Jan 12, 2005
Messages
853
Reaction score
820
My question would be, what are you using for a side plate? What style of rifle are you building?
Early Penn/Ky rifles nearly always had a front bolt. Later Southern rifles seldom did.

If your side plate has two holes….. you get the idea.
 

RomeldonUno

32 Cal
Joined
Jul 20, 2022
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Location
Canada
The second locking bolt is not as important as the first, but if you can, it is best to buy a second bolt.
 

Vaino

Cannon
Joined
Jan 21, 2006
Messages
8,259
Reaction score
436
I've always used 2 lock bolts on PA LRs.....the rear is an #8-32 and the front is a #6-32. As an aside. the tang bolt is also an #8-32. Larger sized bolts aren't necessary.

When building Bucks County LRs, the web at the breech was 1/16" and at the muzzle was 5/32". Because of the 1/16" web, very accurate drilling of the front lock bolt was necessary so the bolt didn't interfere w/ the RR. Also a shallow groove had to be filed in the bbl.......Fred
 
Joined
Nov 26, 2005
Messages
4,375
Reaction score
6,295
Hi,
It probably would have had a late English style flintlock to begin with using one bolt and not a Germanic lock like a Siler. However, if it is a flintlock, using a single bolt means you must inlet the lock precisely so it snugs against the barrel with no gaps near the vent hole. On many or most good quality English locks, there was a lug or hook in the nose of the lock that hooks on the head of a screw inserted in the lock mortise. However, on southern mountain rifles I don't think they bothered much with that. With a TVM kit, I suspect you would not have any issues with clearance of the ramrod and forward lock bolt. They usually leave a thick web of wood between the barrel and ramrod hole.

dave
 

Col. Batguano

69 Cal.
Joined
Feb 10, 2011
Messages
4,696
Reaction score
933
The second (forward) bolt would add strength to a weak area of the stock (the whole breech / lock / wrist interface area), but the tang and rear bolts are of greater importance that way.
 

RomeldonUno

32 Cal
Joined
Jul 20, 2022
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Location
Canada
The second locking bolt is not as important as the first, but if you can, it is best to buy a second bolt.
It pisses me off when you buy something, and the manufacturer doesn't put everything you need in the kit. Last year I was renovating my garage; I bought some new furniture. I couldn't put some of the furniture together because there were not enough fasteners, so I bought extra parts here Scrooz Fasteners | Screws, Fasteners, Nuts and Bolts | Biggest Online Hardware Suppliers Australia. These parts were better than the ones that came in the kit.
 
Joined
Jan 26, 2022
Messages
467
Reaction score
811
With a TVM kit, I suspect you would not have any issues with clearance of the ramrod and forward lock bolt. They usually leave a thick web of wood between the barrel and ramrod hole.

dave

No, they rout out a square bottom slot about 8 inches long and .400" inches wide. I filled the slot in on my TVM Tennessee with a piece of hickory, and drilled out the ramrod hole.

There is however plenty of room between the barrel and ramrod for an 8-32 front cross bolt IF you're spot on with your drilling.
 
Joined
Oct 10, 2004
Messages
4,130
Reaction score
4,935
Location
Florence Alabama
Being a Tennessee rifle two lock bolts would be one too many, my Tn rifle has just one lock bolt and tight inletting, I have a Bogle with one and just sold a Kibler SMR with one lock bolt.

The Tn rifle I built, I made up the side plate design just to be different.

squirrel 40.JPG


I built a couple of Landcasters, both of which have two lock bolts.

haines trigger guard.JPG
 
Top