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Thread: First Carbine Purchase

  1. #1
    Rmccuin is offline
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    First Carbine Purchase

    Hello,

    I am a former member who spent one year shooting borrowed guns thanks to the generosity of team members. I never equipped myself for skirmishing because my wife is active duty military and I figured we would not make many shoots after moving out of Virginia. We have made many more shoots than I would have ever anticipated since leaving Virginia, and I am beyond ready to be back on the line. I have been talking with my father in law and friends of mine regarding buying my first carbine. Admittedly, the only carbine I have actually fired is a musketoon, so I am unfamiliar with the breechloading carbines that are so prevalent. I came into my conversations fairly convinced I wanted a Maynard after seeing other teams shoot them. The fact that I have seen some of the best teams I've had the opportunity to watch shoot at regional events utilize the Maynard heavily as well as having a unique look to it are the only real reasons I have for leaning that direction. The advice I have received so far indicates that the light weight of the Maynard and the proximity of the rear sight to the hammer can be a turn off for some shooters, but are non issues for others. The Smith carbine has been recommended to me during this process as well. The info I have received regarding the Sharps indicates it is a great gun, but can be quite a bit more work to clean and the ammunition is a little more involved than the ammo for the Maynard and the Smith. For those reasons, I am prone to avoid the Sharps.

    I am hoping to hear from other skirmishers on what they recommend for a quality carbine that will give me a chance to perform well on the line as long as I do my job. Also if anyone is aware of a skirmish ready carbine that is available for sale I would greatly appreciate it if you could send me the info on it. We are currently stationed in Germany and I am hoping to be able to shoot at Fall Nationals since we will be back in Virginia. I am not opposed to buying a gun and having work done to it if it is the better option, but finding a skirmish ready gun would allow me to shoot this fall and there are obvious benefits to that. Thank you all in advance for any guidance and information you can provide.

    Sincerely,
    Ron McCuin

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Ron,

    Welcome back and I hope you do get back in time for the Fall Nat?l.

    My two cents:
    First and foremost you have to settle on a piece that suits YOU. Maynard?s are very good carbines. I started with a Model one. They are literal tack drivers when tuned up. However, I found mine to be a bit too finicky and temperamental. So I went to a Model 2 Maynard. Smaller, faster, FUN to shoot. Its sorta like comparing a luxury sedan to a sports coup, between the M1 and 2. The M1 is a TAD bit slower to load/handle with its longer barrel, but the LONG sight radius is very forgiving esp at 100 yards! The M2 is extremely easy to handle on the line!

    I also have a tuned Richmond Carbine. Lover her to death. Great piece for Individuals for example, but in an all out foot race such as a timed team event, she?s far to slow as a muzzle stuffer.

    More advice from others more knowledgeable than myself will be forth coming I?m sure. Take it all in, take some time to think and assess, but also be sure to listen to your gut!

    Happy hunting and I hope cross paths at the Fort.

    Semper Fi!
    Semper Fi,
    Rob Freeman
    WBR
    Col, USMC (Ret.) '87 - '19

    The quality of a person's life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor. - Vince Lombardi

  3. #3
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    The Sharps is fun as it uses combustible cartridges so there is nothing to extract. Also no rubber tubes to wear out.

    But, if you get a Sharps it will probably need an action job to stop their usually horrendous gas leaks. I had mine done by Larry Flees and it is fantastic. Gun shoots pretty much indefinitely without fouling problems. Since the gas is constrained entirely to the breech and barrel it make cleaning pretty easy. Pull the breech block and wash it in the sink, and wipe the bore and breech area down as usual.

    Steve

  4. #4
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    "Pull the breech block and wash it in the sink,"

    Had I done that with my Sharps I would have been sleeping out side with the dog.
    Ron S.
    Formerly 6587V
    NRA Benefactor-Life
    Of all the things that I have lost it's my mind I miss the most.
    Great Grandson of William Gibson ( Canal boat builder ) ( 1862 Militia South Mountain )
    ( Co. C 116 Infantry, 106th Pennsylvania Regiment, Gettysburg
    Rev.22:20 - 1 Thessalonians 4: 16-17 The Best Is yet To Come



  5. #5
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    Ron:

    First, I agree with the advice to find a gun that suits you. Not anyone else. Having said that, here are my thoughts:

    First Model Maynard: Expensive. Romano guns will need a trigger job. Accurate with the right load. Love mine.

    Second Model Maynard: Cheaper. Also accurate. Fast-loading. Popular.

    Smith: OK accuracy. Lower cost.

    Sharps: Can be very accurate. Loading is a PITA. Shiloh is preferred.
    Support the USIMLT! Help your fellow Skirmishers go for the gold! www.usimlt.com

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Which ever way you go Ron, be sure to consider my thread on "How to get rid of an irritating jerk."

  7. #7
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    Had I done that with my Sharps I would have been sleeping out side with the dog.


    Heh, I've got my own utility sink out in my shop.

    Steve

  8. #8
    Lou Lou Lou is online now
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    My advice is to try l three. Folks on your team or the N-SSA arevey helpful in that way.
    first, see which gun fits you best. My opinion doesn?t matter, it is how well you can shoot it
    Lou Lou Lou Ruggiero
    Tammany Regt-42nd NYVI

  9. #9
    PoorJack is offline
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    Lou gives sage advice here. Try all three, the ergonomics are very, very different. Sharps is probably the fastest on the line. Sharps and Smith shoulder and "hang" well. Maynard feels like a Red Ryder bb gun, but that's not to say it's not accurate. I just hate the way a Maynard feels.

    Then there's the also rans, Ghallagers, Starrs, Burnside etc. I wouldn't completely discount a musketoon. Yes they are slow, but they can also be about the most accurate thing going in carbines. You can't miss fast enough to hit anything. For a "first" carbine, a musketoon will fit in seamlessly with a musket if the bore is the same size so you don't have to learn a different manual of arms, nor load up completely frustrating fiddly ammo like a Sharps.

    Try as many as you can and get what you like.
    "A man can never have too much red wine, too many books, or too much ammunition"
    Rudyard Kipling

  10. #10
    Rmccuin is offline
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    Thank you all for taking the time to reply and for the guidance you provided. I have arranged to purchase a 2nd model Maynard and am looking forward to getting back to Fort Shenandoah so I can put some rounds through it. Thanks again for everything!

    Sincerely,
    Ron McCuin

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