1863 .58 Zouave

OP
RVTECH

RVTECH

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Those are a good looking and hard hitting rifle for sure.
Yep - and this one has scored two deer over the years!

Yea for an 'econo' repro I was quite impressed when I first got it. Pretty nice wood, good bluing and all parts fit well and tightly fitted.

When I first got it I had a dovetail cut in the rear and with the help of a machinist friend we machined a dovetail adaptor for the front so I could put 'real' sights on it as opposed to the correct for the rifle (but terrible for any accuracy) sights that came with it. I knew i would be hunting with it and wanted the best accuracy I could get and it has never failed and shoots very accurately with either round balls or hollow base conicals.

For many years it has had a simple marble's flip up on the rear which worked very well, but I am now thinking of some sort of barrel mount aperture sight.

I would never do anything like this on any original or a higher end reproduction but in this case it was an 'economy' rifle with no intrinsic or collector value and the modification really 'pulled' the potential accuracy out of the rifle!

IMG_2411.JPG IMG_2409.JPG
 
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OP
RVTECH

RVTECH

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Glad you really like yours!
Yea at the time when I was looking for my next ML rifle I had long wanted an 1861 Springfield but after looking at one and realizing the barrel was 'in the white' I handled a 'Zouave' and it was a done deal.

The shorter, blued barrel, and the better balance appealed to me much more.
 
OP
RVTECH

RVTECH

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Took the Zouave out today to test it with the new peep sight installed I previously posted about and better than expected results!
The pic is of my first three shots at 50 yards kneeling - with no sight adjustments other than just estimated when I installed it!
The load was .570 RB, 60 grains 3F BP, .015 patches and canola/vegetable oil blend as lube - and I wish I had tried canola/vegetable oil as patch lube previously! It stays liquid in the cool weather (45 today) and does something to keep fouling down. I shot three shots, swabbed with 50/50 windex and Murphy's Oil Soap - then shot another seven rounds with essentially no difference in the 'feel' of the load resistance. It was snug, but smooth.

The patches all fell away about 30' from the muzzle in a nice, small group and upon inspection they showed no signs of blow by burn and were all in one piece as they should be. Also the barrel has considerably less fouling than I have ever experienced.

The rest of my shots were all consistent and tight as well.

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  • IMG_2427[1].JPG
 
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