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My 1756 Long Land Pattern Kit - TRS

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Joined
Dec 5, 2023
Messages
17
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Location
Maryland
Hello,

This is my first post in these forums, and I am a novice with BB and flintlocks. I have always wanted to own a realistic reproduction and did some research. I ultimately decided to go with what I could understand being the most historically accurate kit out there which is the one from The Rifle Shop. I was lucky because they had the 1756 pattern in stock and received it in 2 weeks! Now that being said I have been spending much time reading, looking at videos and ordering tools! Again, I am a novice at this, and you may be wondering why did I purchase such a kit which seems a little more involved than other options? No worries I ask myself the same question! I must also add that I have purchased the entire set of Kit Ravenshear's books and the good old Brown Bess book for reference. I also bought the Ravenshear's Brown Bess plans which should be full size but did not validate that yet.
That being said, I am in no hurry and intend to take this build one step at the time and learn as I go along.
The major worry I had with this kit was the lock assembly and as you probably already know, TRS does not do assemblies at the moment. They did say that they could have heat treated the lock pieces for me and drill the lock plate for the correct geometry. That is a great help, but they also mentioned that I needed first to:
- Inlet the barrel
- Inlet the lock plate with screws including facing the lock.

Now at first, I thought "not too bad", but then I started to think about all of the things that need to be done in order to reach this point.
From what I can figure out I need to do the following more or less in order:
  1. Inlet the barrel without the breech plug. This is throwing me off a little because I would assume "facing the lock" would have an impact on the inletting of the barrel. So do I face the lock beforehand? Also do you straighten the barrel on both sides or just on the lock side. Looking at pictures of the originals it seems as if the barrel was faced on both sides (Or maybe my eyes are pulling a trick on me!).
  2. Install the breech plug. This seems simple but I yet have to run by a definitive answer about lubricating the plug. How do you install the breech plug? Do you use an anti-seize like blue. I saw a video of one guy building a rifle and used Copper grease so I bought that. But it would be great to know what you guys used on a Brown Bess kit to fix the plug.
  3. Inlet the barrel with the breech plug. Kind of straight forward if you can get it right. However, I do have a couple of questions:
    1. Is there any tapering (filing) that needs to be applied to the bolster or do I just leave it straight?
    2. Do you bend the tang do the curvature of the stock like I have seen done on rifles or do you keep it straight and then just file the excess at the end of the tang. The Brown Bess book seems to show fairly deeply filed tangs. Uncertain if they were bent.
  4. Face the lock. This one is tricky. do you start at the breech and straighten forward? Is there a measurement of how long the facing needs to be? Or is this just "enough" to allow for the pan to fit straight against the barrel?
  5. Drill the holes for the lock plate. This means through the plate, wood, and what I did not realize initially also through the breech plug bolster!!
  6. Solder the barrel lugs. Not sure this is necessary for the initial step but at some point I will need to solder the bottom lugs. Does anyone know at which distances from the breech for the 1756 pattern?
Guys I know this is a lot of details I am requesting but as you most certainly already know this is just a few steps in the beginning!
I would greatly appreciate it if you could provide me with any information that could help my journey. If this is productive I will update you on this thread as the project proceeds.

Thanks,
Patrick
 
When @patrickhatton installs the breech plug, the lubricant should be the never seize lubricant as eventually the breech plug may need to be pulled. @dave_person is offering some very good videos on building a Brown Bess. Once the lock plate and side plate are installed and holes drilled and tapped, it will be time to have the lock assembled by a skilled locksmith who can properly harden and temper the parts and stamp them for the proper markings. Take your time, Patrick, and you will have that realistic reproduction that you desire. There is one of the Rifle Shoppe Land Pattern Muskets in use by my unit and it is an excellent example of the Long Land Pattern Musket.
 
When @patrickhatton installs the breech plug, the lubricant should be the never seize lubricant as eventually the breech plug may need to be pulled. @dave_person is offering some very good videos on building a Brown Bess. Once the lock plate and side plate are installed and holes drilled and tapped, it will be time to have the lock assembled by a skilled locksmith who can properly harden and temper the parts and stamp them for the proper markings. Take your time, Patrick, and you will have that realistic reproduction that you desire. There is one of the Rifle Shoppe Land Pattern Muskets in use by my unit and it is an excellent example of the Long Land Pattern Musket.
Thanks! Yeah I will have TRS harden and temper the lock pieces and drill the plate. Then I will polish and assemble the lock. I have copper grease for the breech plug which is a high temperature anti seize lubricant. Do you have a specific product that is usually used?
 
Yes, take your time and study , study, and study how the parts interact with each other. Send the wife and kids out of town for the day and shut your phone off…..the less distractions the better.
 
The best advice I can give......

Find a builder to assemble your very expensive parts set.

Another option....

Put the TRS Bess away for now and build a simpler gun. Say a trade gun.
Clay Smith has Carolina kits.
There’s Jim Chambers’ offerings.
Another option.... maybe the best for you is to build a fowling or trade gun from a blank.
This will give the basic skills you need for this project.

A TRS Bess is not a starter kit.
It’s really easy to take $1.5K++ of parts and make a $250 gun.
 
Hi Patrick,
I am going to be starting the same part set in a couple of weeks, which I will post. I have to build the lock, which I prefer anyway and the project will focus on a long land musket actually used by the 63rd regiment possibly at Bunker Hill, Long Island, Brandywine, Germantown, Monmouth, and Forts Clinton and Montgomery.

dave
 
Thanks! Yeah I will have TRS harden and temper the lock pieces and drill the plate. Then I will polish and assemble the lock. I have copper grease for the breech plug which is a high temperature anti seize lubricant. Do you have a specific product that is usually used?
I wouldn't suggest this. You shouldn't harden any parts until the lock is fully 100% assembled, fit-up, adjusted, polished etc. Otherwise you won't be able to easily adjust parts to fit them. Hardening should be the last thing you do.
 
Hello,

This is my first post in these forums, and I am a novice with BB and flintlocks. I have always wanted to own a realistic reproduction and did some research. I ultimately decided to go with what I could understand being the most historically accurate kit out there which is the one from The Rifle Shop. I was lucky because they had the 1756 pattern in stock and received it in 2 weeks! Now that being said I have been spending much time reading, looking at videos and ordering tools! Again, I am a novice at this, and you may be wondering why did I purchase such a kit which seems a little more involved than other options? No worries I ask myself the same question! I must also add that I have purchased the entire set of Kit Ravenshear's books and the good old Brown Bess book for reference. I also bought the Ravenshear's Brown Bess plans which should be full size but did not validate that yet.
That being said, I am in no hurry and intend to take this build one step at the time and learn as I go along.
The major worry I had with this kit was the lock assembly and as you probably already know, TRS does not do assemblies at the moment. They did say that they could have heat treated the lock pieces for me and drill the lock plate for the correct geometry. That is a great help, but they also mentioned that I needed first to:
- Inlet the barrel
- Inlet the lock plate with screws including facing the lock.

Now at first, I thought "not too bad", but then I started to think about all of the things that need to be done in order to reach this point.
From what I can figure out I need to do the following more or less in order:
  1. Inlet the barrel without the breech plug. This is throwing me off a little because I would assume "facing the lock" would have an impact on the inletting of the barrel. So do I face the lock beforehand? Also do you straighten the barrel on both sides or just on the lock side. Looking at pictures of the originals it seems as if the barrel was faced on both sides (Or maybe my eyes are pulling a trick on me!).
  2. Install the breech plug. This seems simple but I yet have to run by a definitive answer about lubricating the plug. How do you install the breech plug? Do you use an anti-seize like blue. I saw a video of one guy building a rifle and used Copper grease so I bought that. But it would be great to know what you guys used on a Brown Bess kit to fix the plug.
  3. Inlet the barrel with the breech plug. Kind of straight forward if you can get it right. However, I do have a couple of questions:
    1. Is there any tapering (filing) that needs to be applied to the bolster or do I just leave it straight?
    2. Do you bend the tang do the curvature of the stock like I have seen done on rifles or do you keep it straight and then just file the excess at the end of the tang. The Brown Bess book seems to show fairly deeply filed tangs. Uncertain if they were bent.
  4. Face the lock. This one is tricky. do you start at the breech and straighten forward? Is there a measurement of how long the facing needs to be? Or is this just "enough" to allow for the pan to fit straight against the barrel?
  5. Drill the holes for the lock plate. This means through the plate, wood, and what I did not realize initially also through the breech plug bolster!!
  6. Solder the barrel lugs. Not sure this is necessary for the initial step but at some point I will need to solder the bottom lugs. Does anyone know at which distances from the breech for the 1756 pattern?
Guys I know this is a lot of details I am requesting but as you most certainly already know this is just a few steps in the beginning!
I would greatly appreciate it if you could provide me with any information that could help my journey. If this is productive I will update you on this thread as the project proceeds.

Thanks,
Patrick
1. Really this is above my pay grade.
I do believe that Besses have flats on both sides of the barrel. This helps with stock architecture.
If the barrel has no flats it must be faced for the lock. This is critical. Miss-filed .... it could be a disaster. The Bess has a large barrel with a larger face so it’s a little more forgiving but still, this is critical.
The barrel needs to be in final profile before any inlet is started.
2. You do not lube breech threads.
This is file and fit file and fit.....
This is covered in the “building books”.
3. Some builders inlet the plug and barrel together as a time saving measure.
I recommend that the barrel be “profiled” to final dimensions inlet, plug installed and the the plug cut in after the barrel is inlet.
1. Most plugs do have a taper wide at the tang, narrow at the bottom. If it’s perfectly straight, it’s a good idea to file a slight draft where it’s wider at the tang so as it goes down it fills the inlet.
2. It depends on how thick the plug is and the bend of the stock.
A thick plug can be left nearly straight and filed to shape.
Most will require a little bend and filing.
Some will thin a thick plug and bend it....
This gets into preference.
This is covered in the building books.
One trick is to take the curve out of the bolster under the tang. Make this a 90 degree. It aids in inleting and helps bending the tang.
4. Above my pay grade.....
The barrel needs to be in final profile before it’s inlet....
Same for the lock in my opinion.
This is critical.
5. This is a basic step in gun building.
There drill press jigs for this
There’s jigs available for hand drills
Some will eyeball it with a hand drill.
This is covered in the building books.
Yes, the rear lock bolt usually goes through the bolster. The bolster will need to be drilled through or notched.
This really is best done out of the stock. The bolster can be “marked” in the stock, then drilled through or notched out of the stock.
6. Personally I put my lugs in well into the build after the barrel, lock and triggers....
You’ll need to find the info on spacing by study....
 
Hi Patrick,
I am going to be starting the same part set in a couple of weeks, which I will post. I have to build the lock, which I prefer anyway and the project will focus on a long land musket actually used by the 63rd regiment possibly at Bunker Hill, Long Island, Brandywine, Germantown, Monmouth, and Forts Clinton and Montgomery.

dave
That is great news! I will be following you very closely!
 
I wouldn't suggest this. You shouldn't harden any parts until the lock is fully 100% assembled, fit-up, adjusted, polished etc. Otherwise you won't be able to easily adjust parts to fit them. Hardening should be the last thing you do.
Hi Jim thanks for your suggestion it makes a lot of sense. The reason I would have TRS harden is because they would also drill all plate holes (except for the lock bolts) in the right position as they have a gig for that. I may either attempt to find the geometry following Ravenshear’s texts or outsource it. But Dave said he would be building a lock soon and post it so that is tempting!
 
Regarding filing a small tapered flat on the barrel on the lock side so the bolster seats against the barrel properly: the stock has a rough inlet for the barrel and the lock. In such a case the lock location is fixed; cannot be altered. Locate the front of the breechplug and mark this in the lock side of the barrel. Now you can figure out if the barrel needs to be set back a small amount to place the touch hole just in front of the breechplug. And you know how much and where the barrel needs to be filed to fit the bolster.
 
First of all, thanks to all for your comments and insights. Greatly appreciated.
Ok. So I believe pictures can explain better than a thousand words so here I go. Please ignore the barrel not being clean yet at the time of these pictures. I had to remove the tape adhesive. Also you may see some chalk residue that I was using before receiving the Prussian blue.
So to start, I believe that the barrel and breach plug are in very good condition. Not sure where TRS gets them but the fit looks really good and no adjustment needed as to the plug length or breach. The angle under the tang is already at 90 degrees and I don't see no adjustment there:

breachplugside.jpg


I have also noticed that the tang already has a taper almost mid section towards the back, so maybe in the end there will be no bending required but just some filing towards the back and overall.

breachplugtop.jpg


The back of the breach bolster is straight. I am good with that, but I did see on some rifle building videos that sometimes it is tapered inwards towards the bottom. This complicates inletting but was wondering if it is necessary or historically correct. I do not want to cause me additional work for nothing. I'm glad to keep it straight if there isn't a real benefit in tampering it; even because that feels like a complicated filing operation.

breachplugback.jpg


The plug screws in very nicely and tight. In the pictures I have just slightly tighten them by hand to see the fit.
The funny part is that this thread has already confirmed my reading experience around breach plug installation and lubrification. I have one response saying that you need anti-seize lub like Copper grease, and another saying that no lub is used (1-1) it's a tie. I am willing to use the lub as long as it does not impede performance or powder igniting towards the breach face. Funny how you find multiple posts on how to remove a breach plug but not on how to install it! Including if to set hand tight or use major torque.
breachplugbarrelside.jpg

breachplugbarreltop.jpg

breachplugbarrelback.jpg


Of course the barrel needs inletting. Out of the box it looks like this.
barrelinletBack.jpg

barrelinletSide.jpg


Now my question about the facing of the barrel to accommodate the lock pan was if I needed to face even the opposite side. From pictures of originals it is not clear. However looking at how the barrel fits tight on the other side I am not sure the stock will support facing the other side and besides doesn't seem useful as it would apparently serve no purpose at least one I would not know.
barrelinletTop.jpg


Of course the first step is to inlet the barrel but if I had to face the other side I would have to do it previously to follow the barrel profile. I may be hitting a dead horse here as an argument. However, of course the breach plug needs complete inletting.

And finally a question about the lock plate. I think it needs straightening. Is it normal that it bends out slightly? It does tend to rock back and forth when inletting. I put the back side of the plate against a file to try to show how strait it is. If I do need to straighten this do I do it cold or does it need heating of some time?

lockplatestraight.jpg


I am taking this slow and pondering decisions based on the info that I can collect from you guys. Also, I am waiting on a few other tools to come in so I use the right tool for the job!

Thanks to all for your precious insights!
 
Regarding filing a small tapered flat on the barrel on the lock side so the bolster seats against the barrel properly: the stock has a rough inlet for the barrel and the lock. In such a case the lock location is fixed; cannot be altered. Locate the front of the breechplug and mark this in the lock side of the barrel. Now you can figure out if the barrel needs to be set back a small amount to place the touch hole just in front of the breechplug. And you know how much and where the barrel needs to be filed to fit the bolster.
Thanks! That makes a lot of sense. Will keep in mind when locating that facing. The question is about inletting. It seems from some pictures of the originals, that also the other side (opposite the lock) had a file facing. Again I may be wrong but if this is the case I would have to face the sides before inletting as it would impact the stock profile on the side plate side. Again, maybe it is me over thinking things.
 

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