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Thread: Little Guns

  1. #1

    Default Little Guns

    Anyone else using a "sub-caliber" muzzleloader smaller than 32 or 36 caliber? I've had my years with 32's and 36's, but recently started working the kinks out of a 30 caliber flinter (.290" ball). It's a hoot to shoot and snakebite accurate with 10 grains of 3f powder. Can't wait to get going on snowshoe hare with it. I keep reading about guys using 25 caliber muzzleloaders for squirrels in other states.

    I ask all this because when you drop below 32 caliber you move out of the realm of factory components. No such thing as buying jags and ramrods off the shelf, much less ball molds or even precast balls. Seems like a good idea to share sources for such stuff if anyone has them.

    Or am I the only oddball in the state?

  2. #2
    Member akgun&ammo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    North Pole


    BrownBear, I Don't think your an oddball. But you sure know how to up the fun factor sometimes! I look forward to more posts on your new walking about gun.


  3. #3


    For small game hunting the 32 cal. is a fun gun to shoot. It produces basically the same power as a 22 lr. A 40 grn prb @ about 1400 fps. Haven't hunted with anything smaller , but all muzzleloaders are fun to shoot.
    " Americans will never need the 2nd Amendment, until the government tries to take it away."

    On the road of life..... Pot holes keep things interesting !

  4. #4


    The little .290 balls weigh right around 33 grains, and my 10 grain charge is hitting around 1250fps MV from its 42" barrel. I think of it in terms of an SV 22LR.

    Perhaps due to the Ed Rayle barrel, it's one of my most accurate guns, no matter which end it's loaded from. I've shot 25 yard groups that were about the same size as my little fingernail. At 50 yards it's capable of breaking 1/2" groups when I do my part and the wind is calm. Due to the tuned flint lock, it seems as fast or faster than a cap gun so it's really easy to shoot well. Even with the fairly slim fullstock and 13/16" barrel, it's decidedly nose-heavy, which makes it really easy to shoot well offhand.

    But the smallest standard hickory ramrods you can get are 5/16", so I have to scrape them smaller. I came up with a .290 jag by turning down a 32 cal.

  5. #5


    I hunted squirrels with a 32 Cherokee TC for several years back when I was in my 30's. I really wish I had that gun back.

    I remember seeing a 22 caliber pellet firing muzzleloader at the DesMoines gunshow several years ago. If my memory is right the pellets were powered by a musket cap and nothing else(I could be wrong on that but don't think so). The dealer selling that gun said that it would kill squirrels on par with a 22 RWS pellet gun. It had a pretty lofty price tag on it to as I recall.

  6. #6
    Member Rick P's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Palmer Alaska


    One of my hunting pards has a 32 flintlock, major fun to hunt with!
    BHA Member
    Bowyer to the forces of light in the land of the midnight sun.
    The 3 fold way: Every step we take as we walk through life effects, our family, our comunity and ourselves. One should walk thoughtfuly.

  7. #7


    Quote Originally Posted by Rick P View Post
    One of my hunting pards has a 32 flintlock, major fun to hunt with!

    Habit forming, too!


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