T/C Hawken Breech Plug Screw/Cleaning

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Howdy,

My new to me T/C Hawken arrived last Saturday. I figured my first task is to give it a good cleaning since I don't know the history on how it has been maintained. It has some surface rust on the barrel but overall exterior looks pretty good. I had been thinking of removing the breech plug so that I could run the bore brushes straight through, plus I have the No Excuses bullets sampler pack to push down the bore to get a size fit and it seemed to me it would be easier to push them straight through. Then I read the threads on how hard it is to remove the breech plug and pretty much gave up on that idea! However, the section in the T/C Hawken owner's manual entitled "Through Cleaning" states "Next in the cleaning process; fill a pan with hot soapy water. Submerge the muzzle end of the barrel in the water and push wet patch down the barrel (from the breech end) on the end of your ramrod with a jag installed." There was no prior step that instructed removal of the breech plug, but later in the process the instructions state "With the barrel completely dry, lightly lubricate the bore with a quality gun lubricant. Re-install the breech plug, making sure that you have lubricated all of the threads with an anti-seize lubricant like T/C's Super Lube". So, back to the drawing board on trying to remove the breech plug or not...

But, to the point - the attached photo shows the screw on the side of the breech plug under the nipple. The slot in the screw is worn to the point that my screwdriver blade won't gain purchase enough to remove it. I tried using a screw slot file to deepen the slot but the material is pretty hard. I've noticed the later T/C Hawkens don't even have this screw installed. Question is should I fuss with this screw until I get it out, or just leave it alone, since it doesn't appear to figure into the cleaning process. I'll confess that my OCD for everything to work as it should will bother me if I can't remove/reinstall that screw!

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and thanks in advance for the responses.

v/r,
Joe B
 

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Howdy,

My new to me T/C Hawken arrived last Saturday. I figured my first task is to give it a good cleaning since I don't know the history on how it has been maintained. It has some surface rust on the barrel but overall exterior looks pretty good. I had been thinking of removing the breech plug so that I could run the bore brushes straight through, plus I have the No Excuses bullets sampler pack to push down the bore to get a size fit and it seemed to me it would be easier to push them straight through. Then I read the threads on how hard it is to remove the breech plug and pretty much gave up on that idea! However, the section in the T/C Hawken owner's manual entitled "Through Cleaning" states "Next in the cleaning process; fill a pan with hot soapy water. Submerge the muzzle end of the barrel in the water and push wet patch down the barrel (from the breech end) on the end of your ramrod with a jag installed." There was no prior step that instructed removal of the breech plug, but later in the process the instructions state "With the barrel completely dry, lightly lubricate the bore with a quality gun lubricant. Re-install the breech plug, making sure that you have lubricated all of the threads with an anti-seize lubricant like T/C's Super Lube". So, back to the drawing board on trying to remove the breech plug or not...

But, to the point - the attached photo shows the screw on the side of the breech plug under the nipple. The slot in the screw is worn to the point that my screwdriver blade won't gain purchase enough to remove it. I tried using a screw slot file to deepen the slot but the material is pretty hard. I've noticed the later T/C Hawkens don't even have this screw installed. Question is should I fuss with this screw until I get it out, or just leave it alone, since it doesn't appear to figure into the cleaning process. I'll confess that my OCD for everything to work as it should will bother me if I can't remove/reinstall that screw!

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and thanks in advance for the responses.

v/r,
Joe B
T/C Inline instructions for breech plug removal for a rifle with a TC speed breach plug.
 
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let it be. it was not meant to be removed. no need. there are a ' million' threads on this. it was for the manufacturing process .smooth it up and cold blue it. best thing is to get yourself a t/c breech cleaning tool too clean the breech plug from inside. 5 or 6 bucks.
Yes sir, I did read some of those threads. I have the breech cleaning scraper tool on order already from October Country. I'll leave it be but now I just have to deal with my OCD, thanks!
 
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:thumb: than you are good to go. just be carefull with bronze brushes.make sure you get the good ones or they tend to separate leaving you with another problem on which there are many threads also..
 
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Thanks for the advice. The Safety & Instruction Manual I downloaded from the T/C site says for T/C Hawken Muzzleloading Rifle, but it has 2010 copyright, so some of the in-line cleaning steps may have cross-pollinated: highly likely since there was no earlier step to remove the plug. Good to know about the burr messing up the bullets pushed through. No Excuses says either shoot them out or use ball puller, so I guess I'll get to try out my new ball puller :).
Thanks for the sage advice.
 

ord sgt

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The small screw that you refer to is probably already rusted in place. That would be the reason the screw slot is already boogered from previous attempts to remove it.
I have a T/C with that screw. But I have had the rifle since it was new. I did replace the slotted screw with a set screw, just to improve the view of the snail. I did put antiseize grease on the set screw in case I should ever want to remove it in the future. The screw is 8x32, in case you were wondering.
 
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Thanks for the advice. The Safety & Instruction Manual I downloaded from the T/C site says for T/C Hawken Muzzleloading Rifle, but it has 2010 copyright, so some of the in-line cleaning steps may have cross-pollinated: highly likely since there was no earlier step to remove the plug. Good to know about the burr messing up the bullets pushed through. No Excuses says either shoot them out or use ball puller, so I guess I'll get to try out my new ball puller :).
Thanks for the sage advice.
Blow them out with compressed air. Much easier.

Place a blanket hanging over the back of a couple of chairs and blow it into the blanket.

Easy recovery and quick and easy.

Just one example below:

 

SwanShot

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All this "bucket of hot soapy water" stuff - color me skeptical. I have cleaned my rifles for 40 years with a cleaning rod and patches wet with tap water, followed by dry patches, followed by patches wet with oil. Bores are as good as the day I got the rifle.
It's an easy way of doing it. Call me lazy if you like. It works.
 
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I remove the barrel from the stock. Put the breech end into a bucket of hot soapy water or moose milk. Using a patched jag I run it up and down in the bore. This pumps water through the bore and the nipple. Then when the water comes out clear I run dry patches. Stand it up muzzle down to drain. Finish with a lightly oiled patch and store muzzle down.
As fas as the clean out screw, I have replaced it with a 10-32 thumb screw making it easy to remove. Occasionally I remove it and run a pipe cleaner in.
Works for me. I’m obsessed with clean.
 

FishDFly

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All this "bucket of hot soapy water" stuff - color me skeptical. I have cleaned my rifles for 40 years with a cleaning rod and patches wet with tap water, followed by dry patches, followed by patches wet with oil. Bores are as good as the day I got the rifle.
You are right.
 
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Blow them out with compressed air. Much easier.

Place a blanket hanging over the back of a couple of chairs and blow it into the blanket.

Easy recovery and quick and easy.

Just one example below:

Now that's pretty slick! Is there a difference in "refrigerant grade" CO2 and regular pellet rifle CO2? :)
We have a big air compressor at work... I'll try that first.
 
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Now that's pretty slick! Is there a difference in "refrigerant grade" CO2 and regular pellet rifle CO2? :)
We have a big air compressor at work... I'll try that first.
no difference. I just posted that because of the nozzle. with the pointed one, you don't even have to pull the nipple if you are using musket nipple.

Get the compressor up to fully charged. I use the other for in the field.
 

bubba.50

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All this "bucket of hot soapy water" stuff - color me skeptical. I have cleaned my rifles for 40 years with a cleaning rod and patches wet with tap water, followed by dry patches, followed by patches wet with oil. Bores are as good as the day I got the rifle.

Be skeptical all you want. Even be snide & derisive with it. But, I was taught to use a bucket of hot water with a few drops of Dawn in it and it has worked well for me for over 50 years & none of my guns have suffered any ill from it. Stand it in the rack & let the heat from the hot water dry it out, run an alcohol patch or two to make sure all the water is out, then a patch with Barricade or some other protectant. And as you say. 'my barrels are as good as the day I bought them'.
 
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Be skeptical all you want. Even be snide & derisive with it. But, I was taught to use a bucket of hot water with a few drops of Dawn in it and it has worked well for me for over 50 years & none of my guns have suffered any ill from it. Stand it in the rack & let the heat from the hot water dry it out, run an alcohol patch or two to make sure all the water is out, then a patch with Barricade or some other protectant. And as you say. 'my barrels are as good as the day I bought them'.
Lol, dawn came out 49 year's ago 😆😆
 

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