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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again! (Read 1381 times)
Reverend Al
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Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
May 8th, 2019 at 2:02pm
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So if you already have WAY too many project guns that you still need to work up loads for, what do you do?  Why, buy another rifle of course!

This one is a Stevens 44 with a 26" half round / half octagon barrel in .25-20SS.  Very good bore with 6 o'clock extractor.  I suspect that it's a fairly late gun with a serial number in the high 61,000 range?  This rifle came with some more .25-20SS brass and a nice 3 die set of CH4D dies too, so between this rifle and the goodies I recently got for my 1882 Maynard chambered for the same calibre I should be OK to shoot them both for a little while.

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« Last Edit: May 8th, 2019 at 2:09pm by Reverend Al »  

I may have passed my "Best Before" date, but I haven't quite reached my "Expiry" date yet ...
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calledflyer
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #1 - May 8th, 2019 at 3:17pm
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I know little about Stevens rifles (and learning less every day here), but that sight alone makes this rifle a little gem. What'r you drinking? I need to get some of it. Vall, too, but he won't share the info. Anyhow, thanks for the looksee.
  

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Schuetzendave
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #2 - May 8th, 2019 at 4:39pm
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My Stevens 44 .25-20 SS - Do not think she made it outdoors much.
  
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Bill Lawrence
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #3 - May 8th, 2019 at 5:33pm
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All right, boys (and girls), especially those with Stroebel's book and/or early catalogs, who made the tang sight?  My own guess is that it could be one of those made by William Lyman himself before the 1879 patent.  In any case, I'd also guess that it's older than the gun it's now mounted on.

Bill Lawrence
  
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Schuetzendave
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #4 - May 8th, 2019 at 6:35pm
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If you purchased it through the 1908 Sears catalogue you could order it with a Lyman sight and the front was the Stevens # 203 Rocky Mountain blade sight.

« Last Edit: May 8th, 2019 at 6:50pm by Schuetzendave »  
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Schuetzendave
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #5 - May 8th, 2019 at 6:38pm
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Here is the listing for the Lyman and Stevens sights from Nick Stroebel: Old Gunsights & Rifle Scopes:


Lyman No. 1 Combination Tang First Variation: $300-$600
Lyman No. 1 Combination Tang Second Variation: $200-450
Lyman No. 1A Combination Tang Third Variation: $150-$350
Lyman No. 2 Combination Tang First Variation: $250-500
Lyman No. 2A Combination Tang Second Variation: $175-$375


The tang sight on Al's rifle does not appear to be a Lyman or Marbles or King or Stevens.
« Last Edit: May 8th, 2019 at 7:21pm by Schuetzendave »  
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GT
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #6 - May 8th, 2019 at 6:50pm
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Reverend,
I do like your new project and I especially like that sight, or should I say I like how it sits on that rifle.  I'm not generally that fond of the Lyman configuration of tang sights but something about this is different.  I have that same rifle, same caliber, close to the same serial number I picked up from a member here a couple years ago - may have to think about trying my hand at a sight like that for it.  I have a hundred JBA cases for it that I haven't even finished firing the first time so I know what you mean about time and projects... Please give me a hint what you find shoots best in it...   Wink  Nice Nab!

Bill, doing a quick stroll through Stroebels book I didn't see anything that resembled it.
Greg
  

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Reverend Al
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #7 - May 8th, 2019 at 6:51pm
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Does anyone have any way to contact Nick Stobel so that I could send him some photos of this tang sight and ask his opinion about it?
  

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Reverend Al
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #8 - May 8th, 2019 at 6:58pm
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GT wrote on May 8th, 2019 at 6:50pm:
Please give me a hint what you find shoots best in it...   Wink  Nice Nab!


I managed to scare up an original Winchester .25-20SS mould that throws a 77 grain plain base bullet and will try some of those first.  I have IMR4198, SR4759, IMR4227, and old Hercules 2400 that I can try initially and can dig deeper in my "stash" to see what other suitable powders I have.

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I'm just curious if anyone has tried loading .25-20SS with small pistol primers instead of small rifle primers?  After reading several articles on small pistol primers vs small rifle primers in the .22 Hornet I found in testing that the pistol primers did group better in those small capacity cases, so I'm wondering if it might do the same in these small volume .25-20SS cases too?
  

I may have passed my "Best Before" date, but I haven't quite reached my "Expiry" date yet ...
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Schuetzendave
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #9 - May 8th, 2019 at 7:15pm
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Small pistol primers seat a bit deeper in the primer pocket than the small rifle primers.

Somone who did this badly pitted out the face of his Miller's breech block because the primer slammed back against the face and pounded out the breech block around his firing pin hole.

Many others have said they have done it safely, so it may also depend on the amount of wear on the primer pocket and how old the cases are and whether you are careful not to fully seat the primers.
  
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #10 - May 8th, 2019 at 7:46pm
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Hey Al, You sure have singleshotitis in a bad way. Or should I say in a good way. Maybe when Tom Rowe's new book on gunsights get's shipped it will have some info on this sjght.  Dale.
  

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Reverend Al
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #11 - May 8th, 2019 at 7:51pm
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Yeah, I just can't help myself when another good single shot comes along ...

Roll Eyes
  

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GT
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #12 - May 8th, 2019 at 10:03pm
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Al,
In the past I was always referring to getting another single shot as a result of my addiction...  I was corrected the other day, it's only considered an addiction if one is trying to quit! 
You won't believe the burden that's been lifted from MY shoulders knowing this, how about you? 
BUT...
There's a quote I recall about addiction  -
"Addiction begins with the hope that something "out there" can instantly fill up the emptiness inside."   
Whether I had room in the safe or not I seem to feel this emptiness when I see a single shot I like...  Roll Eyes  Maybe I'm not out of the woods yet, I'll have to consult my support group in a couple of weeks.
Greg

  

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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #13 - May 9th, 2019 at 12:28pm
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The SR and the SP, primers and primer pockets, have the same dimensions.

The LR & LP have slightly different length & depth dimensions.

Frank
  

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Schuetzendave
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #14 - May 9th, 2019 at 1:22pm
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Frank:

That was what everyone believes.
I cannot find the chart but someone measured the cup height dimensions of both rifle and pistol small primers of all the manufacturers and came up with a difference of .004".

Yes large rifle versus large pistol primers have more of a difference of about .008" but there is a difference between  cup heights of  small rifle and pistol primers - basically due to the .005" difference in the thickness of the primer wall.

Does that matter.
It was John Hutchinson's rifle that was purchased by Dick Spencer that had it's breech block pounded out and is now owned by Rob Pipke.

Dave
« Last Edit: May 9th, 2019 at 1:29pm by Schuetzendave »  
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #15 - May 9th, 2019 at 3:20pm
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My Ballard shows no sign of primer pounding the breach block shooting 1000s of LR.  I did have the boyz at Cody make a new breech block but that was to have a quick change spare part in case of spring or firing pin problems during a match. Neither shows the problem.  Could it be a high pressure issue?
  

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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #16 - May 9th, 2019 at 4:15pm
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I do know that Kirk at Shiloh Sharps advises not to use pistol primers in the rifles he builds.  He's apparently had people bring in damaged breech blocks.

I have shot thousands of them in C. Sharps highwalls and hundreds in my CPA rifles with no ill effects, but I almost always shim the primers with 0.006" paper.  I don't know if that really helps, but it sounds good to me.

Chris.
  
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oneatatime
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #17 - May 9th, 2019 at 7:56pm
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Well, that was easy enough to check. I just checked Federal small pistol match and small rifle match. They both measured .1185 in height. Maybe CIL used to make some weird ones;-) I use the Federal small pistol match primers in my 25-20 SS, by the way, with 6.8 grains of H108 under Lyman 257420 GC bullets cast of 1 to 20.
« Last Edit: May 9th, 2019 at 8:02pm by oneatatime »  
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Schuetzendave
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #18 - May 9th, 2019 at 8:25pm
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Could it be a high pressure issue?

I believe it was.
John used a higher powder load so the slamming back of the pistol primer was related to his load being more of a rifle load as opposed to the pistol loads most Schuetzen shooters use.
  
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #19 - May 9th, 2019 at 9:47pm
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oneatatime wrote on May 9th, 2019 at 7:56pm:
Well, that was easy enough to check. I just checked Federal small pistol match and small rifle match. They both measured .1185 in height. Maybe CIL used to make some weird ones;-) I use the Federal small pistol match primers in my 25-20 SS, by the way, with 6.8 grains of H108 under Lyman 257420 GC bullets cast of 1 to 20.


My Ballard experience has been Fed 150 LP.  I have never measured them.
  

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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #20 - May 9th, 2019 at 10:44pm
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Schuetzenmiester wrote on May 9th, 2019 at 9:47pm:
oneatatime wrote on May 9th, 2019 at 7:56pm:
Well, that was easy enough to check. I just checked Federal small pistol match and small rifle match. They both measured .1185 in height. Maybe CIL used to make some weird ones;-) I use the Federal small pistol match primers in my 25-20 SS, by the way, with 6.8 grains of H108 under Lyman 257420 GC bullets cast of 1 to 20.


My Ballard experience has been Fed 150 LP.  I have never measured them.

The Small Rifle and Small Pistol primer pocket uniforming tool from Sinclair uses the same smaller diameter cutter and is set to the same pocket depth for both types of small primers.
The Large Rifle and Large Pistol primer pocket uniforming tools from Sinclair uses the same larger diameter cutter, but the Large Rifle primer pocket uniformer is set for a deeper pocket depth, while the Large Pistol primer pocket uniformer is set to a shallower pocket depth.
  

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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #21 - May 10th, 2019 at 3:07am
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Do we know yet the maker of that tang sight on Reverend Al's rifle?
  
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Reverend Al
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #22 - May 10th, 2019 at 2:26pm
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The sight mystery is solved!  I went to take some close ups of the sight today.  When I removed the sight disc and looked closer I saw that it was marked "Watson Reg'd" on it.  Nothing else on the base or mast.  OK, so next I had a closer look with a magnifying glass at the front globe sight with pinball post and very faintly (a bit tough to read with my terrible eyes) it says:  "Watson Pat'd Dec 12 05" and then under that "Niagara Falls Canada".  There is something more just behind the patent date, but I can't make it out.  Possibly another date?

So I went looking online (Google is your friend!) and low and behold I found a post about Mr. Watson and his sights!  Apparently he was a Canadian sight maker in Niagara Falls, Ontario which makes sense since this rifle came from Ontario.  Here is the info that was in that post.

I had the opportunity of examining an 1899 rifle on the weekend that had a Watson front globe sight. On the sight it stated "Watson, Niagara Falls, Canada, Sept 06".
This may help solve the mystery of who Watson, where and when he produced sights.


Does anyone have any further info on Watson sights?

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Bill Lawrence
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #23 - May 10th, 2019 at 3:45pm
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Good work, Reverend Al!  It appears to be a very well-made sight; and since Niagara Falls, Canada is literally just over the border, I'm surprised that we haven't seen more of them, especially on guns originally from the New York area around the falls.  In any case, it gives me something new to look for.

Bill Lawrence
  
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Re: Stevens 44 in .25-20SS ... did it again!
Reply #24 - May 10th, 2019 at 5:47pm
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That rings a bell. I had to look it up and when I saw the square shaft that cinched it. I have one at my smith that some day will end up on my H&A 1122 when it is lined.
  
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