Quantcast

Looking for a smoothbore barrel in Oz

Help Support Muzzle Loading Forum:

LawrenceA

40 Cal
MLF Supporter
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
Messages
345
Reaction score
247
Location
Gulf country, Australia
HI guys
I have the urge to build a matchlock.
Does anyone know where to get a reasonable smoothbore barrel on this side of the Pacific that would suit?
Thinking of waiting for a 16 or 20 gauge shotty barrel but they will be a bit short and may look odd on a matchlock.
 

Treestalker

45 Cal.
MLF Supporter
Joined
Mar 24, 2014
Messages
2,061
Reaction score
894
Location
Arkansas Ozarks
Just build what you want and enjoy it and them that don't like it can waltz Matilda in their own fashion. In fact I'd call it my 'Billabong' gun. I believe a 20 guage modern shotgun barrel would serve well and can be tapped for a plug with a standard SAE or metric tap; I did it years ago and it worked fine. Don't cut the chamber off if it has one, it will make a fine shotgun barrel. If you want to shoot round pumpkin balls you will need to cut off the chamber just behind the forcing cone. That way you have a straight bore. Also some early matchlocks had shorter barrels and some really weird stock shapes; you can get away with a lot and have a most useful piece. You can decorate it native style with lots of bone inlays, Dingo teeth, and kookaburra feathers and whatever pops up in your treks in the outback. There is no better gun for the trail than a smoothbore and it will be legal as poppies in China. (They are still legal, right?) Good luck and send us pictures of your creation and the trail! Thanks, George 1.
 
Last edited:

Zonie

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
MLF Supporter
Joined
Oct 4, 2003
Messages
31,211
Reaction score
4,049
Location
Phoenix, AZ
To create the breech plug for a 20 guage muzzleloader from a modern 20 guage shotgun, cut the breech end of the barrel where the shotshell goes off leaving about 3/4 inch (.750") of chamber before the start of the forcing cone.
The chamber diameter in the barrel has a diameter of .685". This is exactly the size of the minor diameter of an internal 3/4-16 UNF thread, (.682"-.696"). By threading the remaining chamber areas bore with a 3/4-16UNF tap you can screw a 3/4-16 UNF bolt into it for the breech plug.

This isn't ideal for a breech area because the best design has a square shoulder at the end of the bore for the breech plug to tighten against and all the altered shotgun will have is a forcing cone in that area.
This will cause a small amount of powder gas to blow back thru the threads when the gun is fired but it can be minimized by wrapping the breech plug threads with a few turns of teflon plumbing tape. The tape will seal off the leak.

Have fun. :thumb:
 

Heelerau

45 Cal.
Joined
Apr 26, 2013
Messages
825
Reaction score
165
I am also going to build a matchlock. You can get hollow bar from a steel mob in Melbourne that should do the trick. That is what I will use myself.

Cheers PM me if you like
 

LawrenceA

40 Cal
MLF Supporter
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
Messages
345
Reaction score
247
Location
Gulf country, Australia
HI mate
ended up getting a 20 gauge barrel. Have just abut finished the lock and am waiting on the wood from Vardy and a few bits from TOTW.
If you are interested, Rebel gun works has an old octagon to round single barrel shotty in16g and Cleaver has new Rossi 20 Gauge barrels.
Just finished cutting off the chamber and tapering the tiller.
Fashioned the mainspring out of a piece of ruler (now I can measure the trigger pull :) ).
Done more since this picture but:
P1070366.JPG
 

Rudyard

45 Cal.
Joined
Feb 28, 2019
Messages
758
Reaction score
463
I can see a great resurgence for matchlocks My motto has ever been "Build a better matchlock & the world will beat a path to your door " If hasnt worked but Ive made a .lot .
Regards Rudyard
 

Heelerau

45 Cal.
Joined
Apr 26, 2013
Messages
825
Reaction score
165
I have made a bit more progress, forged a pan out of a railway spike, pan cover and trigger from some scrap, pan is now silver soldered on, pan cover fitted, lock is now morticed in, (need more practise, not a great job) side nails drilled and tapped, so lock and trigger fitted. Trigger is nice and crisp and quite light, so should be good to handle. Still to finish off the stock shaping, drill the ram rod hole, under lugs for the barrel pins, fore end cap and ram rod pipe.
P1030564.jpeg
P1030558.jpeg
P1030562.jpeg
 

LawrenceA

40 Cal
MLF Supporter
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
Messages
345
Reaction score
247
Location
Gulf country, Australia
Doing well mate
I am still waiting for my barrel to get licensed and returned.
The fluting looks good and the buttplate blends well.
If you need slowmatch I have procured a few meters.
 

Heelerau

45 Cal.
Joined
Apr 26, 2013
Messages
825
Reaction score
165
I was going to get some sash cord from Bunnings and soak it in saltpetre. If I have no luck I will be in touch. Thanks
 

Rudyard

45 Cal.
Joined
Feb 28, 2019
Messages
758
Reaction score
463
See that the sash cord is all cotton most today have a core of plastic .Ive platted Macramé string for some guns goes oval but fine no plastic . Liscenced by who Qld gone mad like rest of this anti gun world.? Nice L:eek:ck Heelerau ! Cheers Rudyard
 

LawrenceA

40 Cal
MLF Supporter
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
Messages
345
Reaction score
247
Location
Gulf country, Australia
See that the sash cord is all cotton most today have a core of plastic .Ive platted Macramé string for some guns goes oval but fine no plastic . Liscenced by who Qld gone mad like rest of this anti gun world.? Nice L:eek:ck Heelerau ! Cheers Rudyard
Yes licensed by the Police Licensing branch.
I am not allowed to make a firearm. They are currently considering if those Gel Blasters are firearms so a Matchlock definitely is.
The gunsmith in Cairns (the closest to me at only 500 miles away) has had it for about 2 months. He insists on fitting the breechplug, drilling the touch hole and test firing.
Suppose I can't blame him. He is putting his reputation on the line.
 

Rudyard

45 Cal.
Joined
Feb 28, 2019
Messages
758
Reaction score
463
No proof laws in this hemisphear why do they make needless nonsence up ? .Some where up your way is a 40 cal flint Jager styled after Wm Grice Searles got it from Ross Simpson it was one I kept on the Station. Plugs just a WW bolt & I proofed it in UK beech stock wooden box ,brass moints & added check piece & dragon . Very good with a picket style bullet 1" oct blacked . has bears running up the breech end .First rifle I made. 'Uglee' but was fond of it ere QLD brought up silly laws so''s to be in fashion with the other states I suppose, Orig lock stamped LONDON typical New England militia lock worth more than I got for the gun . Rudyard
 

LawrenceA

40 Cal
MLF Supporter
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
Messages
345
Reaction score
247
Location
Gulf country, Australia
Right pain in the Khyber for sure.
Been keeping busy with other stuff. Now got a good supply of Minies and other such lead lumps.
Been doing about all I can on the Matchlock and spending more time thinking of what I can do next than actually doing.
On top of that going into what is believed to be a doozy of a wet season so expecting to be flooded in for weeks if not months.
Actually got to do a bit of hunting 😁!!! Got 4 boars weekend before last.
I can see the story now. "My 4 boar rifle! and one piglet".

In the process of getting a Chambers kit as well and talk about drawn out....
I think it will be a retirement project at this rate. Only 15 years to wait.:eek:
 

Heelerau

45 Cal.
Joined
Apr 26, 2013
Messages
825
Reaction score
165
A good mate gave me that lock !! a most generous Yorkshire soul.
 

Jay Templin

40 Cal
MLF Supporter
Joined
Apr 9, 2020
Messages
100
Reaction score
107
Location
Tidewater Virginia
I was going to get some sash cord from Bunnings and soak it in saltpetre. If I have no luck I will be in touch. Thanks
The period recipe we use for match is hemp cord boiled in a pot with vinegar, water, and powder. It seems to work better than the cotton in saltpetre mix I used to make up. Burns hotter and slower.
Jay
 

Rudyard

45 Cal.
Joined
Feb 28, 2019
Messages
758
Reaction score
463
Good on you Jay. And Lawrence I admire your patience its clearly a" Lets be as negative as we can "Govt bumph when QLD was so free .
" Where the creeks run dry ,"or ten foot high & its either drought or plenty " You will have to build a punt.
Cheers Rudyard
 

Jay Templin

40 Cal
MLF Supporter
Joined
Apr 9, 2020
Messages
100
Reaction score
107
Location
Tidewater Virginia
Jay, what are the proportions re your mix please?
Understand that I supervise James Fort at Jamestown Settlement - we fire matchlocks and artillery daily, so my batch size is larger than most folks will need.
12 fathoms of hemp cord (I think we’re using 8mm from Hemp Traders right now.)
1/2 - 3/4 pound black powder
1/2 gallon white vinegar
Water as needed.
Coil the hemp cord loosely and put it into your pot- we use a cast iron pot that holds about 3 gallons. A rock will help weight it down so it stays submerged. Pour in the powder, vinegar, and water, and pop it over the fire. Bring it to a boil, and keep it bubbling for a couple of hours, adding water as needed. Pull it off the fire, let it cool for a few hours, and hang it to dry. Pretty straightforward. It burns slowly (attached photo shows 45 minutes of burning) but exceedingly hot.
Jay
 

Attachments

Latest posts

Top