Pedersoli Lock Tuning

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fishmusic

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I have a Pedersoli Kentucky with a flint lock, It is .45 cal that I built from a kit. I have never been satisfied with the lock. The frizzen spring was too stiff so it ate flints for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I did some grinding on the frizzen spring to lighten it and that, for now, has solved the flint issue.

The lock is incredibly slow and the trigger has a very firm pull (not a set trigger but that is for another post) I measured the touch hole at .063” and from other posts it seems that this is good enough. I have never been able to remove the liner to see what the other side looks like. That puppy is in there tight.

Any suggestions on how to lighten up the trigger pull? I haven’t measured it (don’t have that tool) but it is pretty stiff. Once it snaps it is crisp with no creep but getting it snap when I want it to is the issue.

I am open to all suggestions on how to tune a lock to make it more reliable and faster.
 

EC121

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Remove the mainspring. Set the hammer to full cock. Point the lock nose down. Slowly press the sear bar. You can also check the sear spring tension whole doing this. The hammer shouldn't move backward before it drops(freely with no bind). If it does, the full cock notch angle is wrong.
Polish the sear nose, frizzen spring, mainspring nose, tumbler horn, and frizzen foot to a shiny finish. Grease it all while assembling. I use lithium grease and a pipe cleaner or toothpick every time I clean the rifle, but about grease any will work. Grease doesn't run off into the wood like oil will.
 
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Fly103

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On my pefersoli pennsylvania (same lock), i reshaped and polished the frizzen foot to get the frizzen to open with less force.

You have got to get the flash hole liner out, the kentucky has a patent breech and the only good way to get the fouling out of it is thru the flash hole channel with a pipe cleaner. The breech on my pennsylvania gets fouled to the point that after a dozen shots the powder doesnt even enter it when loading.

As for the trigger, examine the engagement of the sear spring and sear, also make sure the sides of the trigger are polished smooth and not binding on the trigger housing or lockplate. I had to address both of those items on my harpers ferry kit.

Chris
 

EC121

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The frizzen should snap open just as the flint reaches the bottom or slightly before. The degrees vary with the lock. If it doesn't, I stone an angle on the foot so it will. Most decent locks will do it, but it only takes seconds to check it.
 

hanshi

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I once had a Pedersoli .50 Cub that was accurate, killed lots of deer (took one at 100+ yards) and was a joy to use. However, the flint lock was garbage and I had to get a percussion lock for reliability. But I still killed quite a few deer with the flint lock - also lost a few when the lock refused to work - and even more with the cap lock. Finally sold it. Sad since it was such a nice little rifle.
 

fishmusic

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Well All,

I couldn't wait until the weekend to do the polishing so I "dismantled" the lock this evening. You notice the word dismantled is in quotations. I managed to get the frizzen off and polished the foot with jeweler's rouge to a nice shiny finish. I could not get the frizzen spring off. My spring vise was too big and interfered with getting at the screw. I could not get the tension off of that spring to save my soul (many dollars in the swear jar). So I couldn't polish that part of the spring.

The main spring was another issue. Easy enough to get off but royal PITA to compress and get back on. I had to pre-compress it in my hobby vise (smooth faces on that) then put the spring vise on and transfer it to the lock. I didn't polish any of the tumbler parts but did clean them and grease them up and grease the other moving parts and mating surfaces.

To my surprise I tried a few dry fires and the lock seems looser and without as much pull tension on it. I will credit the lube. I used what was available, Gorilla Grease, that I use for nipples. Over the weekend I will pick up some lithium grease 'cause I think that is more durable.

I could go on and on but if I don't hear from y'all before the weekend Happy Independence Day!
 

ord sgt

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The main spring was another issue. Easy enough to get off but royal PITA to compress and get back on. I had to pre-compress it in my hobby vise (smooth faces on that) then put the spring vise on and transfer it to the lock. I didn't polish any of the tumbler parts but did clean them and grease them up and grease the other moving parts and mating surfaces.
You would do well to buy a mainspring vice. It can be used for both springs, one at a time though. Disassembling the lock is needed at times, depending on the amount of shooting that you do. I live in a colder climate than you, so after what I consider the last shots before winter, I will completely tear down the lock for a deep cleaning before storing the flintlocks away for winter. I actually have two mainspring vices and a frizzen spring compressor.
 

fishmusic

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You would do well to buy a mainspring vice. It can be used for both springs, one at a time though. Disassembling the lock is needed at times, depending on the amount of shooting that you do. I live in a colder climate than you, so after what I consider the last shots before winter, I will completely tear down the lock for a deep cleaning before storing the flintlocks away for winter. I actually have two mainspring vices and a frizzen spring compressor.
I do have a mainspring vise. My attempts to remove the frizzen spring with it was my issue. I did get it compressed enough to try to take the screw out but it interfered with my screw driver and I buggered up the screw slot and could not remove it. You say you have a frizzen spring vise. Where did you get it and what does it look like? It sounds like a good investment.
 

ord sgt

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I have used a spring vise to remove the frizzen spring. My spring compressor is home made. I just used some round stock and heated it with a propane torch.
IMG_1476.jpg
 

fishmusic

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I have used a spring vise to remove the frizzen spring. My spring compressor is home made. I just used some round stock and heated it with a propane torch.View attachment 83472
Ord Sgt, that is the same vise I have. I have used it successfully to disassemble my Large Siler lock and my CVA Mountain Rifle lock. This Pedersoli is just plain stubborn. How do you use the spring compressor? Do you manually force the spring in and then transfer it to the vise?
 

fishmusic

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Well, Brad Emig called me this morning and told me what he did to clean up this lock. I can't wait to get it back. Brad was a pleasure to talk to. He got my lock yesterday and had a break in his usual tasks and was able to get to my lock immediately. He cleaned it up and reduced the friction points, polished up the frizzen spring and a myriad of other details. I'm dying to loose a few balls down range and get this rifle to where it should be.
 

TerryK

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Curious if you could say the turn around time from Brad on your lock?
I have a new Pedersoli Jaeger and I think it has the most powerful mainspring I pulled back. I did not shoot it yet but I bet it tears up flints. Looked like the sparks went forward of the pan.
 

fishmusic

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Curious if you could say the turn around time from Brad on your lock?
I have a new Pedersoli Jaeger and I think it has the most powerful mainspring I pulled back. I did not shoot it yet but I bet it tears up flints. Looked like the sparks went forward of the pan.
TerryK,
I just got my lock back today. When I spoke to Brad on the phone I found that I got it there between jobs and he got to it right away. He said his usual turn around was two to three weeks from time of receipt. How far are you from York? His shop is located just outside in Hellam. I sent mine from Texas and it got there in less than a week. My total turnaround was two weeks.

Brad adjusted the cock so that the geometry angle was better, repaired my damaged screws, adjusted the frizzen spring tension and polished it up and finally reworked the frizzen foot for better function. The difference is night and day. I did a few dry fires and the trigger pull feels so much lighter. Taking it to a match this Saturday to see what happens.
 

DrLaw

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The late Paul Vallandingham wrote about the Pedersoli lock and it being a rock breaker. His solution was to grind down the mainspring little by little and keeping water nearby to cool it down. I did this with my Jaeger and it does not wear out flints anymore.
 
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