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Help with flintlock hammer

 
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dinorocks
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Joined: 07 Mar 2013
Posts: 13
Location: Buffalo, NY
Real Name: Dino Zack

PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2017 7:37 am    Post subject: Help with flintlock hammer Reply with quote

Thanks for reading! My background is primitive archery ("bowyer") which evolved to attending rendezvous (I received incredible support from folks on this forum) and now "shooting" flintlock. I started with a TC Hawken percussion cap and bought a TC Hawken flintlock the other year...I didn't want to spend big bucks right out of the gate. I love "shooting" the rifle but need to put the word shoot in parentheses as I'm not very successful getting the rifle to fire. I joined some clubs, read what ever I could get my hands on, and attend some shoots...I did learned lots...one thing I learned is you get what you paid for...which is fine.

I had a different frizzen put on my rifle as the frizzen I had was very soft... I'm still having issues getting a spark. Now that I read more about the various issues with getting the rifle to fire I see that my flint is only striking about 1/4 of my frizzen (at the bottom). I heard about heating and bending my hammer but also heard that if I do that, the angle will not be proper when the flint hits the frizzen. Maybe worth a try?

Does anyone have any suggestions short of buying a new lock assembly for $150...I only spent a couple hundred bucks on the gun and think I would rather put the cost of a new lock toward a new flintlock down the road. Does anyone know if there is an aftermarket hammer I could buy that fixes the TC Hawken issue? ...I heard that this issue is common with this type of gun.

Again, please forgive my lack of knowledge...I understand it may be hard to help much without having the rifle in hand. At this point I'm just reaching as I really want to have some reliability with the gun when I take it out into the woods.

Thank you very much!!!

Dino

dinorocks@gmail.com
716-866-8222 - cell
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Don Abbott
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Joined: 17 May 2007
Posts: 113
Location: East Tennessee
Real Name: Don Abbott

PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2017 7:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Howdy Dino... been a while!

I hope you get an informed answer soon, but traffic has been a little low here since Facebook started killing off all of our forums.

You might want to try over here:

http://www.muzzleloadingforum.com/

A lot of good stuff on there.

Good luck,

Don
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dinorocks
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Joined: 07 Mar 2013
Posts: 13
Location: Buffalo, NY
Real Name: Dino Zack

PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2017 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Don! Yes, all is well...hope you had a nice summer and getting ready for fall! Colton and I are still making lots of sparks with your striker!

Take care,
Dino
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Sanscoeur
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Joined: 16 May 2007
Posts: 93
Location: Tulsa, OK
Real Name: Mike Piper

PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2017 10:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Although I own a few of them, and have been fooling with them for over 20 years, I don't have any special expertise in the use of flintlocks. But it seems to me that there are a hundred different ways to vary the pitch and angle of a flint within the cock before you start heating up iron and bending things that may make you sorry later. There is to be a lot latitude of adjustment in the top jaw that should allow you to elevate the flint.

I don't claim to know the answer to your problem, especially without actually seeing the subject lock, but I would advise against bending the cock until a REAL professional recommends that as a cure to your rifle's ill.

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dinorocks
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Joined: 07 Mar 2013
Posts: 13
Location: Buffalo, NY
Real Name: Dino Zack

PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2017 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your response! I have been doing a little research since posting my question and plan to take a closer look at the flint/frizzen contact angles and how I can make adjustments (without heating/bending my hammer (cock)). I also learned TC changed the cocks on their newer rifles...the old style was not providing much flint contact with the frizzen(?). I have picts of both so I can see which one I have.
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Shaun
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Joined: 10 Jul 2007
Posts: 63

Real Name: Shaun Riedell

PostPosted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 12:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What way are you putting your flint in the jaws of the cock? If you go bevel down you can gain a little on where the flint strikes the frizzen. With clever leather padding on your flint you might be able to raise it more. Good luck!
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Paul C. Daiute
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Joined: 02 Mar 2010
Posts: 151
Location: Fort Western, On the Kennebec in Mayne 1740s-1760
Real Name: Paul C. Daiute

PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 5:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can also lengthen the flint that is exposed beyond the tip of the jaws of the cock. It's difficult to know how to help you without seeing the lock set up. Very frustrating for you and for those of us who want to help you.
Regards, Paul

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Last edited by Paul C. Daiute on Fri Sep 29, 2017 2:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
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bob miller
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Joined: 28 Jan 2009
Posts: 132
Location: Sharbot Lake,Ontario
Real Name: Bob Miller

PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 6:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heating and bending the frizzen will affect the hardness, and unless you are knowledgable in hardening/tempering , you will be dealing with a soft frizzen again. I have worked on a number of those locks, and they can be tempermental. Is your flint sharp ? Are you using the packaged sawn/cut flints ? They don't work very well in my experience. A nicely knapped english or french flint works much better. If the shape of the flint doesn't allow proper positioning in the jaws, you can alter the shape with a build up of epoxy.
Don't let the frustration of working with less than optimum equipment ruin your enthusiasm . A good quality flintlock/firelock is extremely reliable if properly maintained. I recommend Chamber's or R.E. Davis locks. Please let us know how you make out.
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Fitzhugh Williams
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Joined: 15 May 2007
Posts: 384
Location: Greenville, SC
Real Name: Fitzhugh Williams

PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 7:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You might try the L&R replacement locks. I had good luck with one on a Traditions gun some years ago.

http://www.lr-rpl.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=74:tc-lock&catid=36:cva-small&Itemid=62
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dinorocks
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Joined: 07 Mar 2013
Posts: 13
Location: Buffalo, NY
Real Name: Dino Zack

PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 8:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for all the replies!!

I have used multiple types of flints (cut and knapped) and I have flipped them 180 degrees in an attempt to get them to strike higher on the frizzen. I read that I could try to shim the flint so it strikes higher on the frizzen…I plan to give that at try.

I do not want to heat my hammer (cock) as I don't want to mess up the geometry...and, at this point, I don't know how to properly heat treat my frizzen or face hardening it.

A friend replaced my frizzen with one that was supposedly harder...

Below are some picts (hopefully the links work)…note the flint was sharp and it was centered more that it is now.






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dinorocks
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Joined: 07 Mar 2013
Posts: 13
Location: Buffalo, NY
Real Name: Dino Zack

PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 8:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dang...I guess the links to the photos didn't work. If someone can help me with posting the picts I would be very grateful!

Thanks[/url]
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dinorocks
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Joined: 07 Mar 2013
Posts: 13
Location: Buffalo, NY
Real Name: Dino Zack

PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 8:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

https://imgur.com/YgRrRJs

https://imgur.com/SeKZbOG

https://imgur.com/0WahkXX
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Fitzhugh Williams
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Joined: 15 May 2007
Posts: 384
Location: Greenville, SC
Real Name: Fitzhugh Williams

PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2017 7:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I notice that you are using sawed flints. You might try knapped flints instead. And get someone to re-sole the frizzen.
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bob miller
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Joined: 28 Jan 2009
Posts: 132
Location: Sharbot Lake,Ontario
Real Name: Bob Miller

PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2017 7:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like the back of the flint to be firmly set against the jaw screw. I think it helps , and have at times notched the flint leather to accommodate a larger flint. I position the flint in the jaws so that it is 1/8th to 1/4 inch from the frizzen face when at 1/2 cock [ depending on the lock size] The flint strikes the frizzen approx 2/3 to 3/4 up . If I recall correctly, the main springs are rather weak on those locks, which doesn't help
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