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Thread: How much powder?

  1. #1
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    Default How much powder?

    I have a ML Pistol, 50 Caliber, with a 9 inch barrel. It is a rather interesting gun, with a hooked breech and set triggers. (Traditions Trapper, Model)

    The manufacturer suggests 45 grains of 3F for a maximum charge, with a RB.

    This would be a LIGHT load for a 50 Cal. ML RIFLE.

    I want to use 250 grain Conical, (The Lee REAL) mold, for a most POWERFUL load.

    Iím assuming I would reach a point where the recoil would limit the charge.

    Also, a point where the short barrel would not burn all the powder.

    Possibly, the velocity would not stabilize the conical bullet, anyway. (I don't know the twist.)

    Iím not at all sure about these things.

    Iím of the mind to try up to 45 grains, and go from there.

    Are there any safety/pressure concerns with heavy, rifle charges in a pistol?

    Any thoughts, or experiences from others, especially regarding charges, would be appreciated.

    Thanks
    Smitty of the North
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  2. #2

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    I've never pushed loads any higher in my Lyman, and with conicals I bet you might not want to do it a second time. With the grip shape and all, they get pretty hard to hold onto as recoil goes up. I know a lot of guys exceed manufacturer reco's on charges and live, but it's not turf that I've turned. One thing to think about, with that much powder under a 250, recoil is going to be a fair bit higher than with a smokeless load pushing the same weight to the same velocity in a modern revolver. Powder weight is one of the factors in the recoil formula. And the handgun weighs a whole lot less than the rifle.

    I'm running 140 grains of 2f under a 340 grain round ball in one of my 62 cals for example, producing about 1550 MV. At the end of the recoil cycle my muzzle is pointing up at about 45 degrees. I tried 60 grains of 3f in a 62 cal handgun with the same ball, and the gun went well past 45 degrees and just about came out of my hand, if that's a comparison for you.

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    Smitty, my BIL has a T/C pistol but I couldn't get him on the phone. Here is a chart from T/C. Pretty big file but on page 68 it has a chart for the 50 cal loadings in their pistol. Hope it helps

    http://www.tcarms.com/assets/manuals...der_Manual.pdf

    Mark

  4. #4

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    I bet those charges really bellow out of a short barrel! Holy cow. I have one rifle with a 24" barrel, and any time I get over around 80 grains with it, it really flaps your pant legs.

    I'm leery of such big charges out of a traditions sidelock rather than the Encore, though, both for metallurgy and grip shape.

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    It does seem like a lot of powder out of a short barrel. I doubt all the powder would be burned in that length. Oh well, those are right from the manufacturer for the T/C encore pistol.

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    Thank guys, for the info and website:

    I reckon I'll go with my plan then. And, use my chrono along with it.

    Thanks again.

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
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  7. #7

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    Smitty, the mfg is recommending a certain charge and round ball for a reason. I'll break it down:
    There is a point where shooting black powder in any length or bore of a muzzle loader that you reach a point of diminishing returns. Your only going to reach a certain muzzle velocity with black powder, 45 gr of 3Fg out of a short barrel is probably that point. Above 45 gr charges your just blowing expensive powder out the bore and creating a bigger flash. The mfg is recommending 3Fg for a reason over say 2 Fg, it burns faster and achieves it's potential pressure curve within the shorter barrel. Were you shooting a rifle then they would recommend 2Fg.
    Now to address the projectile recommended by the mfg. They are recommending a patched round ball rather than the conical because of the rifling pitch or twist speed, this has to do with accuracy and nothing else. The barrel is probably a cut off rifle barrel with a 1:48 or 1:60 twist which will stabilize the round ball where as a true pistol barrel would have a faster twist rate say 1:20 or 1:32 which would stabilize the conicals or sabots.

    Bottom line, save yourself some $ shoot less powder per shot, plus round balls are cheaper than conicals or sabots and will be more accurate too. You will get more shots per pound of powder and pound of lead. Additionally, probably hit what your shooting at.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jmckenney View Post
    Smitty, the mfg is recommending a certain charge and round ball for a reason. I'll break it down:
    There is a point where shooting black powder in any length or bore of a muzzle loader that you reach a point of diminishing returns. Your only going to reach a certain muzzle velocity with black powder, 45 gr of 3Fg out of a short barrel is probably that point. Above 45 gr charges your just blowing expensive powder out the bore and creating a bigger flash. The mfg is recommending 3Fg for a reason over say 2 Fg, it burns faster and achieves it's potential pressure curve within the shorter barrel. Were you shooting a rifle then they would recommend 2Fg.
    Now to address the projectile recommended by the mfg. They are recommending a patched round ball rather than the conical because of the rifling pitch or twist speed, this has to do with accuracy and nothing else. The barrel is probably a cut off rifle barrel with a 1:48 or 1:60 twist which will stabilize the round ball where as a true pistol barrel would have a faster twist rate say 1:20 or 1:32 which would stabilize the conicals or sabots.

    Bottom line, save yourself some $ shoot less powder per shot, plus round balls are cheaper than conicals or sabots and will be more accurate too. You will get more shots per pound of powder and pound of lead. Additionally, probably hit what your shooting at.
    Thank You, Suh:

    I've been shooting RBs, with 25 to 35 grains of 3F.

    I just wanted a more powerful Carry Load, and I have the 250 grain Conicals on hand.

    The conicals are for my rifles. BTW, I've not found a good way to carry messy lubed conicals with me for easy loading.

    I'm thinking about putting them into a rolled tube of paper, and loading them holding the tube.

    Thanks
    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

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    Relatively new to hunting with my muzzleloader. ďNot tohuntingĒ Interesting comments about different loads in regards to muzzleloaderpistols. Looking at TCís charts, for anovice, makes judging heavier loads even more difficult.

    I have a Traditions Trappers Pistol, .50 cal. Tried using it this year during a muzzleloaderonly hunt.
    ďFor dispatching a downed animal onlyĒ
    After this yearsí experience, curious if thereís even enoughvelocity to justify using a muzzleloader pistol at point blank range on future hunts.
    Note: Iíve been in onover 50 moose kills so not new to dispatching animals in timely mater.

    Charge I used 47 grs. 3 f/fffg, .495 round ball with patch.
    Results: barely gotenough penetration to break through the hide. Ball lodged up against a rib. point blank range.
    Second round because of convenience used 50 gr. pellet sameround ball similar results.
    Long story short ended up dispatching animal with my CVA, .50Cal, Optima Pro. With almost instant results.

    Conclusion: Prior tousing my pistol in the field again for hunting purposes I plan to actual have atest done with chronographer. At whichtime will decide if pistol is worth taking on next trip.
    Has anyone out there had a more positive experience? Similar situation?
    Note: Exterior temp. atthe time around -16 which also played a factor Iím told.

  10. #10

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    For frame of reference, I've taken several dozen deer with the 45 colt and 44 special in revolvers launching 250 grain "conicals" at standard velocities of around 750 fps. All shots have been 60 yards or less, and I've never had to take a second shot, nor have I ever recovered a bullet. They were all pass throughs and quickly dead deer. I'd have complete confidence in your pistol for deer to at least 50 yards if you hit the 700-750 fps range, which I think is entirely do-able within factory load specs.

    My wife is shooting a 54 cal rifle rather than a 50, but she's accounted for who knows how many deer to 50 yards using only 60 grains of 3f under a round ball. And never recovered a single ball. They were all complete passthroughs.

  11. #11
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    OK, Yentlemen:

    Taday, I farred 3 shots with the 250 grain Conical in my Trapper.

    First, I tried 35 grains both hands, then 45 grains using one hand, then a nother 45 grains, using both hands.

    Recoil wasn't a problem. Accuracy at 7 yards/21 feet, was good.

    I guess, my next step is to Chrono some rounds at the range, then up the charge a bit to see if there is any increase in velocity, or unmanageable recoil.

    If I ever hunt deer with my ML rifle, I can carry this along for a fast 2nd shot, or a finisher.

    I have a holster for SS MLs that I got from Track of the Wolf.

    That's where I'm at, at this moment in time.

    Thanks for the Inputs.

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
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    ramdap:

    I dunno when I'll go to the range again. I'm waiting for my new glasses, following cataract surgery.

    When I do, I can get in touch with you, and we can use my Lil Chrony for some testing.

    I normally, shoot at Birchwood.

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

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    Smitty of the North:

    Yes, I would like that. Let me know when your eyes have had time to recover. Birchwood Range not that far from Wasillawhere I live.
    Do you know formula to convert weight X speed to Ft. poundsof energy?

    Differential to various loads in relation to:
    elevation
    temperature
    barometric pressure

    Cell: 775-0811
    Dave


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    ramdap:

    I can easily look up the formula, to determine the Ft Pounds of energy figure.

    BUT, I've trained myself to ignore it because, since it doesn't equate to Killing Power, it's useless to me.

    As to entering "elevation, temperature, and Barometric pressure, into the figure, NOPE.

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty of the North View Post
    The conicals are for my rifles. BTW, I've not found a good way to carry messy lubed conicals with me for easy loading.

    I'm thinking about putting them into a rolled tube of paper, and loading them holding the tube.
    I fergitted to address that point Smitty-

    Like you I had trouble carrying lubed bullets till I switched lubes. Now I double-coat with LEE's Liquid Alox. Just put the new bullets in a ziploc and pour a little over them and slosh. Pull them out and let them dry, then do it again. It's basically a dry lube and little prob to carry the bullets loose, while shooting better than other lubes I've tried on the REAL.

    Long as you have a little of that expensive Liquid Alox left in the ziploc, drop in a handful of felt wads to soak it up, then lay them out to dry. One of those between the powder and bullet completes the picture. Every gun I've ever owned shot the REALs better with that felt wad.

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    Thanks BB:

    That sounds good.

    I shall try that.

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Smitty of the North View Post
    Thank You, Suh:

    I've been shooting RBs, with 25 to 35 grains of 3F.

    I just wanted a more powerful Carry Load, and I have the 250 grain Conicals on hand.

    The conicals are for my rifles. BTW, I've not found a good way to carry messy lubed conicals with me for easy loading.

    I'm thinking about putting them into a rolled tube of paper, and loading them holding the tube.

    Thanks
    Smitty of the North

    Smitty, do like they did in the Civil War, wrap the lubed bullet in linen paper, similiar to paper patching. Or go a step further and make up some paper cartridges with the powder and bullet, then all you have to do is bite off the pig tail, dump the powder down the barrel followed with the bullet still in the paper wrap.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jmckenney View Post
    Smitty, do like they did in the Civil War, wrap the lubed bullet in linen paper, similiar to paper patching. Or go a step further and make up some paper cartridges with the powder and bullet, then all you have to do is bite off the pig tail, dump the powder down the barrel followed with the bullet still in the paper wrap.
    There's a idea, but I think I'll try the Lee Bullet Lube, as BB suggested.

    I even have some already.

    Thanks
    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

  19. #19
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    Smitty- To carry the conicals, try to find a PLASTIC test tube that is a little bigger in diameter than your conicals. Load three or four with the point to the closed end and get a rubber stopper to seal the end. Very ilttle mess that way. I have a set of three (sorry they're the only ones I've got) Butler Creek speedloaders- you seat the bullet in on endpoint in and pour your measured charge of powder in the other endthe close the cap which also has a holder for a #11 cap. http://www.theonlinegunshop.com/shop...R-ACCESSORIES/ if you check the website there are several different "speedloaders" listed there. Loading won't be completely grease free, but... Now If your interest is staying completely traditional- , I'd go with a paper cartridge setup like the soldiers used back then.

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