Equipment

Browning High-Wall firing from cross-sticks

 

EQUIPMENT >>

Buffalo rifle shooters use replicas of the guns used by the cowboys, frontiersmen, soldiers, settlers and buffalo hunters in the USA in the second half of the 19th century.

The rifles are made by US manufacturers such as Shiloh Sharps Rifle Manufacturing Company, C. Sharps Arms Company or Italian makers such as Pedersoli or Uberti.

Typically these guns cost in the region of $2,000 new and hold their value well for second hand sales if well looked after.

The majority of the rifles are Sharps 1874 replicas, known as Falling Block rifles, but others, such as Remington Rolling Block Rifles and Winchester 1885 High Walls, are also popular.

Sharps 1874 Rifle

 

Remington Rolling-Block Rifle

 

1885 High-Wall Rifle

 

Club rules require rifles to be single-shot, have an external hammer and designed before 1900. These rifles weigh from 10 pounds and have either  rifled or smooth-bore barrels, 30 to 34 inches in length.

 

The most popular calibre is 45/70 Government  (meaning: a 45 cal projectile propelled by a 70 gr charge of Black Powder). It was a cartridge developed by the U.S. Army‘s Springfield Armory for use in the Springfield Model 1873 rifle. This was the rifle used during the Battle of The Little Big Horn by Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer troops.

45-70 Blackpowder Cartridges in Bandolier.

 

The projectile weigh between 500 and 550 gr (grains) and when loaded are propelled by  up to 70 gr of Black Powder (also known as Gunpowder).

.45 cal Grease-grooved Lead Projectile

 

Modern Smokeless Powders (usually Nitrocellulose based) are not seen to be in the ‘Spirit of the Game‘.

Other popular calibres are 45/90 Sharps, 50/90 Sharps and 40/65 Winchester.

Targets are shot at distances of 200 to 1000 yards from low stools or sitting on the ground. Cross sticks are used to support the rifle while taking aim (except at shorter distances).

Typically, 10 shots are fired at each target with scores for hits or heart shots (bullseyes). The term heart shot comes from the shape of the target as most ranges use a steel cut out of a buffalo as their main target.

 

Bullet Seating Die Installation

        

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