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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I got my Needle rifle in the mail today. What a Stunner! I have no idea if the needle is original or not so I don't want to fire it with what's in the gun now. And they only last from 60 to 200 shots so will need to have a few on hand. Where can I get,

1. Needles

2. Bullet mold. Would like the proper bullet mold. I understand some guys just use plain ball ammo but not interested in that.

3. What best percussion caps are best for this? Same stuff you use for a muzzle loading musket?

Photos of gun

A video will be up by 12:30 PM today.

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About 15 years ago I paid for the custom cherry that Bernie with Old West Bullet Molds uses to cut his molds. AFAIK he is the only person in the US to offer a Dreyse mold. I think I remember using a drawing of the n/A bullet for the mold. EDIT: It was the 1855 bullet. It's available here.

Heinrich Hensel with Hensel bullet molds also offers one here: Langblei
I just purchased a different mold from him a month ago and couldn't be more pleased with the quality. It will take a bit, as you'll have to complete an international wire transfer and wait for the mold to be shipped over. Overall time from the transfer being initiated to receiving the mold was about a month.

Stephan Joan with antiquefirearms.com offered reproduction needles at one time, but has since sold out. You might contact him and see where he had them made.

Where'd you find your needle rifle?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
About 15 years ago I paid for the custom cherry that Bernie with Old West Bullet Molds uses to cut his molds. AFAIK he is the only person in the US to offer a Dreyse mold. I think I remember using a drawing of the n/A bullet for the mold. It's available here.

Heinrich Hensel with Hensel bullet molds also offers one here: Langblei
I just purchased a different mold from him a month ago and couldn't be more pleased with the quality. It will take a bit, as you'll have to complete an international wire transfer and wait for the mold to be shipped over. Overall time from the transfer being initiated to receiving the mold was about a month.

Stephan Joan with antiquefirearms.com offered reproduction needles at one time, but has since sold out. You might contact him and see where he had them made.

Where'd you find your needle rifle?
Simpsons LTD. Their thank you for your order is held up before I get into the bubble rap in the video. I have seen them sell for less but also seen them sell for more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
What type of Lead Smelter do I need? Anything special? I saw one at the pawn store last time I was there. I just ordered the bullet moud. :)
 

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Good Evening,

Have owned several Dreyse rifles and now shooting a '41 long rifle. Good source of needles w/holders are the West brothers out of the United Kingdom. They are the authors of several books on Dreyse, Chassepot, and more. The brothers are very knowledgeable and always helpful:

[email protected]

Simply use 4-wing musket caps and you can also find the bullet mold at Accurate Molds.

I also use homemade wooden sabots.

Randy
 

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BTW, your Dreyse should be marked with a LA (lange) or a KA (kurz) on the buttstock. These were made with two lengths of butt-stocks to fit the two standard sizes of German at the time. Lange Deutscher and Kurz Deutscher. :LOL:

You can check if your needle is worn by comparing it to a vertical hash mark on the right side receiver rail just behind the chamber.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Good Evening,

Have owned several Dreyse rifles and now shooting a '41 long rifle. Good source of needles w/holders are the West brothers out of the United Kingdom. They are the authors of several books on Dreyse, Chassepot, and more. The brothers are very knowledgeable and always helpful:

[email protected]

Simply use 4-wing musket caps and you can also find the bullet mold at Accurate Molds.

I also use homemade wooden sabots.

Randy
Can you put up a photo of the sabot?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·

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Good Morning,

No video on my sabots. Here is what I can give you:

A. Mini-lathe a must!!!
B. Sabot used is for the egg-shaped bullet

1. Dreyse Wooden Sabots with some info I put online
2. Sabot length is 1"
3. Sabot Diameter 5/8"
4. Birch wood (must use a soft wood)
5. I did have a custom drill bit made to hollow out and create the hole for the bullet and for the 4-wing cap

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6. Hole for cap is .25" wide x 12mm long (short part of bit) and the diameter of the bit is 14mm
7. Cut 1" blanks
8. Make one pass with the bit to a length of 29mm into the blanks

Hope That Helps,
Randy
 

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I highly recommend this book. There is a chapter on how to make the cartridges.

Green Wood Font Rectangle Triangle


Product Font Cosmetics Line Material property


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Here is an original unfired sabot and outer wrapping. The paper is .004" thick.


The four cuts that help release the bullet can be seen at the top.


The base of the sabot showing the rings left from winding the sabot and the unfired priming compound is also visible in it's pocket. There's more priming compound than in a modern musket cap. Wirtgen barely mentions manufacturing of the ammunition in his book (at least from what I can find). The most I've been able to find in the book is his mentioning that Dreyse simply had machines special made to manufacture the sabots. Real detailed. I think these were wound together and then fed into a press that compressed them in dies, possibly heated. It almost has the feel of a piece of Masonite, which conicidentally is also formed using steam heat and pressure.


Diameter of the sabot is .627" or 15.93mm.


Length is .777"
 

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The base of the sabot showing the rings left from winding the sabot

I am really confused about the material of which the sabot was made. Some authors state formed/pressed papier-mache, some state coiled paper. I see the rings on your photo (not very well), but they could be from the process of cutting/facing the bottom of the sabot. What say you - really coiled paper? Guy and Leonard, extremely knowledgeable on the subject say coiled paper that "unfurls" in shooting. But the contemporary accounts state that the sabots didn't disintegrate/unfurl and could hurt the troops nearby if hit. Hence my confusion...:rolleyes:
 
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