Volunteer Rifle bullet size?

Discussion in 'Percussion Rifles' started by Stantheman86, Feb 9, 2019.

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  1. Feb 9, 2019 #1

    Stantheman86

    Stantheman86

    Stantheman86

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    20190206_003524.jpg

    Just got a Parker-Hale .451 Volunteer rifle,beautiful rifle......I bought 40 bullets from Track of the Wolf but they are a very tight fit. I have a .449 push through sizer, and a .450 sizer on the way.

    I also have a source for .445 300 gr hollow base bullets.

    Some people say not to use undersize bullets in the .451 rifles because it might "shift forward", yet .575 Minies have been used in .58 bores since forever ago, I've fired thousands of .575 Minies in .58 rifles, and .533 Minies in my .54 Mississippi.....I can't see why a .445 in a .451 would be different.

    I'm going to just try different bullets and see what works, it's part of the fun.
     
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  2. Feb 9, 2019 #2

    Woodnbow

    Woodnbow

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    I use a slightly undersized bullet in a 45 caliber Seneca. And it seems to work pretty well. Very accurate, but I check regularly to see that the bullet has not shifted forward. It would be a real bummer to have that happen and blow the barrel up.
     
  3. Feb 9, 2019 #3

    52Bore

    52Bore

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    Lyman made the Volunteer bullet for that rifle 451114 is the old number, it's slightly different now. Mine shot better with a 530gr PP than the Lyman or any other grease groove I tried.
    Congrats and Enjoy!
     
  4. Feb 9, 2019 #4

    Badgerfarm

    Badgerfarm

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    You should be in the ball park with a .449 or .450 sizer as .001 under the bore size is usually optimal in a Volunteer. At least mine prefers it that way.
     
  5. Feb 10, 2019 #5

    Tobee

    Tobee

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    Have same; PH volunteer. Had to check, haha. Lyman 451114 cast, sized to .451 is a slip fit at the muzzle. After lubing, need to use firm thumb pressure to seat in the muzzle. Not going to shift, imho. Accuracy is good.
     
  6. Feb 10, 2019 #6

    Stantheman86

    Stantheman86

    Stantheman86

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    20190209_230424.jpg
    First .451 bullet, attempt to size to .449, tapped it through and the base swelled up, stopping it in the sizer. Had to use pliers to "squeeze" the base back down. Ugly bullet now :)

    I'll have to go to my local Harbor Freight and get a $60 1/2 ton press, to press them through using a wood dowel. Someone , I think on this forum , gave me that idea.
     
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  7. Feb 10, 2019 #7

    fleener

    fleener

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    when I first started shooting concials in my .45 rifle I only had bullet molds in .458 or .459. I sized them down, but did it in two steps.

    Now I have molds in the correct sizes.

    Fleener
     
  8. Feb 11, 2019 #8

    Tobee

    Tobee

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    Stan, The cast from TOW came pre-lubed or clean? Clean, what do they mic?
     
  9. Feb 11, 2019 #9

    Stantheman86

    Stantheman86

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    They come unlubed, the only access to a mic I have is at my Dad's house but as of now , they were difficult to get through the .449 push thru sizer. They seem oversized. They would not go into the muzzle of my rifle even with finger pressure, and the P-H's are said to be a consistent. 451 bore size.


    I'm also mildly annoyed by the front sight, the post is too close to the top of the round sight hood.....I may have to clip the top off and clean it up with a file.
     
  10. Feb 11, 2019 #10

    Tobee

    Tobee

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    You have a stand alone push through sizer, ya? I size .45 through a lee push through die or a size/lube die. Sizing down 2 thou isn't hard but then I have the leverage of a press. Did you lube the bullet when sizing? If not try. Should be easier to push and also keep the lube grooves intact. If that is still hard then I would size in the .450 die and then size in the .449; sizing in steps. Could be the TOW cast is on the large side of .451 and/or the .449 is on the smaller side. No worries, you'll sort it out.

    Maybe a pic of the front sight? Could it be aftermarket?
     
  11. Feb 11, 2019 #11

    pchwcf50110

    pchwcf50110

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    My PH Volunteer and my Euro Arms version both take .450" to slip fit down the bore. If you are trying to size bullets dry you will have a devil of a time. Fill the grooves with lube and push them base first through the die. Lubed bullets size easily.
     
  12. Feb 12, 2019 #12

    Stantheman86

    Stantheman86

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    I'll take a pic of the front sight when I get home, looks like its stock but someone added a longer post.

    I'm intrigued by the Beach Convertible sight, it just looks neat.

    I did try to size it dry, I size .54 minie balls lubed and it is easier plus I do like to lube and then size , so the bullet comes out with neatly filled grooves.

    I did break down and get a Pedersoli .450 sizer, I'll probably get a hand press at some point.
     
  13. Feb 13, 2019 #13

    Stantheman86

    Stantheman86

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    The front sight of the Volunteer. Looks like a past owner dropped it on the front sight.
     

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  14. Feb 13, 2019 #14

    Tobee

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    Honestly, Not sure why the post looks tall. I have an aftermarket front sight. Just a wide post. Top of barrel to top of the sight measures about .45", if that helps. I would try the sights at 100 yards. Imho, don't think it will hurt if you have to raise the rear sight a bit. See what happens. I wouldn't care so much what the hood looks like. Gun needs to shoot good first.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2019
  15. Feb 13, 2019 #15

    Stantheman86

    Stantheman86

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    Thank You for all the replies :) very helpful

    It's funny the small things that bug us, back when I was into surplus rifles the sight hood on K98's used to bug me the same way, it's too close to the top of the front sight. I'm gonna shoot this rifle hopefully Friday and see how it does with the 40 bullets I have.

    The rear sight has a windage adjustable leaf marked 200, I'm guessing there were different height leaves for the rear sight.
     
  16. Feb 16, 2019 #16

    nkbj

    nkbj

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    What Tobee said.

    If you have sticky lube on a long bullet it tries to stay where you last put it.
    Only down side to paper patched is the paper slowly decompressing over time if you make them up in advance and size real close to bore diameter.
     
  17. Feb 16, 2019 #17

    nkbj

    nkbj

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    By the way, I wanted more or less medium range in weight for an offhand hunting rifle so opted for .458" bore diameter instead of .451.
    That way I'm like a kid in a candy shop with all those 45-70 molds that have been made up over the last century and half.
    :)
     
  18. Feb 16, 2019 #18

    TFoley

    TFoley

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    That there is a very strange-looking foresight. The sight on the P-H Whitworth and three-band volunteer is a post and bead CENTERED in the circle formed by the 'hood'. I've never seen any like this one.
     
  19. Feb 17, 2019 at 6:11 AM #19

    Stantheman86

    Stantheman86

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    I would love a .458 bore target rifle :)

    It looks like someone put a new post in there, to make it higher? Why that person then left the 200 leaf on the rear sight is puzzling.

    There is no sign it ever had a tang sight mounted to it.

    Does the Birmingham produced Volunteer have a 3/8" front sight dovetail? Just curious

    What I plan to do is cut the top off the sight hood and clean up the cut. Making it a tight "U" shape.

    The post being so high in the hood makes an optical "mirage" making target shooting difficult.
     

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