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This is a Hawken Hunter Carbine from Cabela's, no longer marketed. It's built by Investarms of Italy which I understand builds Lyman black powder rifles. It has a very fast twist designed to shoot heavy Minies and saboted pistol bullets. It does really well at 100 yards with a 385 grain Hornady Great Plains and a 240 grain .44 sabot.

I bought a 360 grain 50 caliber Lee Minie mold, the heaviest they made when I bought it. I've not played with it for a while, haven't had any pure lead. It demands pure lead soft enough to expand on firing into the riflings. For those who don't know, Minies are designed with a hollow base to facilitate this expansion.

Well, at 40 yards it made one hole, so I got all excited. Set up for 100 yards on my 100 yard range and it put 'em 8" left or right, all over the place. I've come to the conclusion that the rifling on that rifle is just too fast for this shorter bullet. It needs that Great Plains which is longer and heavier. So, I guess I'll plink at short range with the 360 grain bullet, but use the Great Plains (still) for hunting. I seem to recall my CVA Wolf shooting this bullet rather well, it having a slower 1:32 twist. I'm going to play with that rifle, an inline 209 gun with a scope, next to see what it'll do with the 360 grain Minie. This gun also shoots the 385 grain Great Plains quite well and I've taken a buck with it in the past. It's a cool rifle, like a .50-90 Sharps without the brass to mess with. It hits HARD, too, using 777.
 

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I have a Hawken I built from a Kit, its a full size, 27" barrel I think. I have only shot ball through her, but I have thought about Minie balls.

Even though the 360 Gr bullet didnt work, its still a fun day when you can get out and shoot!
 
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It was a pretty bad day to be shooting, in the end got rained out, but hey, I couldn't wait any longer and, well, it's about 30 yards from my back porch to my 100 yard range. :D
 
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I think you’re right on target about the rifling rate. My understanding has been that less rifling is better for heavier projectiles - in a given caliber, of course. Seems that I read somewhere that a company tried to launch a new caliber (241?) which rendered an improvement in the properties they were looking to utilize for the newer caliber but that they “overtwisted” the rifling leading to a commercial failure of both the rifle and the caliber.
 

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I have a double barrel 54 cal CVA Express rifle, it doesn't like the mini balls either. The Remington gold round balls with a patch shoot great but I keep saying I'm going to try saboted rounds one day but I never have. 54 cal stuff is hard to find locally and I have a pile of the round balls that I like.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, my theory is shot on the CVA Wolf. It didn't shoot worth a toot with the 360 grain bullet, all over the backstop. Loaded a 385 grain Great Plains and, as always, and it being sighted in for that bullet, it drilled the bull at 100 yards. Good 'nuf, don't change what ain't broke. :D I was just wanting that mold to work.

Well, I haven't tried it in my 1:48 twist rifle. I'll keep that on the agenda, try 'em in the Plainsman.
 

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Sorry, I just had to drop by and see where you put your mini balls. :D :D :D

Carry on.
 

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Sorry, I just had to drop by and see where you put your mini balls. :D :D :D

Carry on.
he-he-he.
Yea I thought about responding to this post several times but figured it was a set up by the Moderators to get me banned for life!!---------:D
 
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