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gfarrell80
Aug 31, 2006


Heya folks. So on an impulse last fall I bought myself a Traditions Kentucky Rifle kit. Oh baby. Took a while, but I finally got it out to the range today.
It's been a long but fun process. I'm a total newb myself with only very basic wood working skills, but I can say, if you want a fun project, a muzzle loader kit can be seriously fun and rewarding.

Basically, before you start any kind of finishing, you need to do a complete dry fit of the parts. You’ll need to drill the stock to fit some barrel tenon pins in, and do some shaping to make sure the trigger and guard assembly fits nicely. Bare minimum you need a vise, drill, dremel, and sanding paper and sanding blocks. The wood finishing is really the fun part once you start slathering on stain, sealer, and oil. Midway USA on youtube has some great stock finishing videos. I went with a stain/sealer mix (2 coats), followed by multiple coats of linseed/tru-oil finish, followed by a few rub-downs of rottenstone.

In parallel with the wood finishing, you can be finishing the metal. The barrel comes unfinished steel. Again, there are nice youtube vids showing browning/bluing methods. I went with about 4 browning applications, followed by about 6 bluing applications (with light rub-downs in between). You’ll need a punch and hammer to install the front sight.

Pics!

(Spanish steel... Much stronger than our native barrels)

It is a fun feeling taking a kit to the range, loading it, and pulling the trigger for the first time. Did not blow up in my face or fall apart! yehaaa! It was however in the 30's with windchill, so I only loaded and fired it twice before my fingers got a little numb. Once it is warmer out I'll dial it in and see if I can shoot a group.

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Looks like it turned out pretty well.

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