wisdom vs. experience... or, today I learned...

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new2bp

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"The difference between wisdom and experience is that with experience, you learn from your mistakes. With wisdom, you learn from the mistakes of others."

So... I've been doing an experiment. Since I have a princely $120 invested in my .54 rifle and since I've shot it with nothing but real black, I figured I'd see just how long before a cleaning really was needed or Bad Stuff happens. After all I figure folks weren't spending a hour plus cleaning their rifle every few days after shooting a deer etc 150 years ago.

Been shooting loads of 50-100gr 3Fg Schutzen under PRBs lubed with bore butter on the patch or Maxis lubed with a 50/50 beeswax/crisco mix. Between two and 12 shots per session, no swabbing betewen shots or after session, just shoot it and stick it in the soft case, at least one session per week for the past 5 weeks, total of about 50 rounds down the tube. Had a failure to fire yesterday (still no obvious signs of rust etc). Cap went pop. So did the next two but no kaboom. I know I didn't dry ball it - was only gonna shoot one four shot group to counterbalance the mag dumps from the FA Uzi my buddy brought out, so I had 4 canisters of powder set up, etc. had already shot the first 3, and #4 was in the gun.

Removed nipple, dribbled some water into the hole, stirred it around with a straightened out staple. Best I can figure as to root cause is an unburnt/unburnable chunk-o-something got between the flash channel and the powder charge, blocking access. Think it was due to excessive lube, etc - the crisco/wax mix just gets globbed onto a maxi and spread around and into the grooves, then the whole mess gets shoved down the tube, I could easily see a piece of it picking up powder residue and other crud and eventually causing an issue.

Learning continued - a ball puller really sucks for trying to dig into a maxi. Got it started and started pulling, ripped out a hunk of lead surrounding the threads on the puller, but couldn't get it re-sunk in to give a second try. (fwiw my only other dry ball experience is on my revolver - a 3" drywall screw works great!)

Then I discovered that the breech plugs on CVA non-inlines are basically not removable - so much for just driving the whole thing out one end or the other with my range rod...

Then I had my a-ha! moment, and remembered reading something about being in such a situation without a ball puller and being able to dribble a grain or two of powder into the bolster underneath the nipple. Got a better pick, rooted it around to clear a path as best possible, blew things out with compressed air, dribbled some 3Fg in there, whacked the side of the rifle to settle it, saw there was room for more and did it again, then put nipple on and stepped in back yard and got enough of a pop to drive the maxi out and get lost at the base of the tree I was shooting at (there is a big dirt mound surrounding it, safest place for discharging a gun without going thru a lot of hassle)

The final lesson of the day is "hey, dummy, you don't have all your BP rifle cleaning stuff at home". When I got my rifle 2 months ago, I was at the very beginning of a big house renovation. Which should be finished this week, but I finally have a kitchen again. Of course, my "gun stuff" oven mitt, pot for water boiling, and bucket for sticking the barrel in while I pour and swab and pump are over at my mom's house.... and no, I dare not use the wife's stuff - she's a red headed Puerto Rican and I like waking up alive....

Anyway, deep cleaning will be done tomorrow and I'll update with information on rust and any other lessons learned from not cleaning a well used BP rifle for almost 6 weeks.
 
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"Wisdom" is actually,, the ability or result of an ability to think and act utilizing experience, knowledge, understanding and insight.
It's the capacity to make due use of, in an accumulated manner, all of the above.

Experience; I've seen nasty bore damaging rust develop overnight.
Knowledge; I've seen many rusted bore
Understanding; BP residue is corrosive
Insight; Don't do that to a gun.

Shared Wisdom; Don't worry your gun will still shoot, likely just fine, but you can say goodbye to any 10X in the future.
More Shared Wisdom; When ya do the deep cleaning, don't forget to clean and lubricate the lock and trigger(s)

p.s. they cleaned the gun.
 
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Ninering62

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"Wisdom" is actually,, the ability or result of an ability to think and act utilizing experience, knowledge, understanding and insight.
It's the capacity to make due use of, in an accumulated manner, all of the above.

Experience; I've seen nasty bore damaging rust develop overnight.
Knowledge; I've seen many rusted bore
Understanding; BP residue is corrosive
Insight; Don't do that to a gun.

Wisdom; Don't worry your gun will still shoot, likely just fine, but you can say goodbye to any 10X in the future.
More Wisdom; When ya do the deep cleaning, don't forget to clean and lubricate the lock and trigger(s)

p.s. they cleaned the gun.
Somebody else in the room has a big ole brain on them. Really good post.
 
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