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Thread: BPCR - Black Powder Cartridge Reloading - tips invited

  1. #1
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    Default BPCR - Black Powder Cartridge Reloading - tips invited

    I reviewed the lat two years of headlines in the muzzleloader section. If they just beat this to death 25 months ago I am sorry I missed it.

    I have only done it once and it was a lot of fun. I figure if you are gonna do it you might as well load up 50 or 100 of them and have at it all at once, the gun won't be any harder to clean. By Gawd that was cool, enormous clouds of thick smoke, plumes of sulfurous solids coming out the just fired chamber throat - probably a good thing I had the range to myself that day.

    Well, sort of. Won't be harder to clean if you do 50 of them compared to 6, but boy howdy I had some crud in the barrel.

    I am going to try placing a lubed patch between my powder charge and my bullet this second time around- and maybe see if I can use a case mouth belling die to compress the powder a bit before I seat bullets.

    The stuff I did correctly last time was to trim all my brass the same length, standard primers worked fine for me. I measured the distance from the crimp groove on my bullet to the bullet base did a little math and trickled a charge into a primed case that would end up giving 5% compression on the powder charge with the bullet seated. I did that by using that tail piece on my micrometer dangling down from the case mouth... Then I poured that charge out of the case back into my powder measure so I could make more of the same.

    IIRC I came up right near 37.5gr for 45Colt with 255gr SWCs.

    Has anybody fooled with drop tubes or tampers to run their charge up a little?

    Better or worse lube/patch combinations? It reads like the thing to do is get a bunch of really soft lube in there to keep the fouling soft.

    Thanks, for me this right up with seeing a professional sporting event or major concert or Halley's comet and so on, a cylinder full of black powder .45 Colt.

  2. #2

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    Haven't done a lot of cartridge loading with BP, and that only large rifle cases (50-140, 50-70 and 45-90) and shotgun rather than small case pistol. So what I can tell you is pretty general and not really fine-tuning like you seem to be looking for.

    There's a real limit the amount of compressing you can do. You don't say which granulation you were using, but I'm assuming 3f Goex. Going to 4f is out of the question safety-wise, but all brands of black powder are not created equal. If you want to heat things up beyond Goex performance, look into the granulations available for Swiss. It's quite a bit hotter than Goex, even with the comparable granulations.

    As for lubes and lotsa shooting, I'd go to one of the BPCR sites or to Shiloh Sharpes for recommendations. There are some really good ones out there that don't take lots.

    Sounds like a really fun time you had there. I loaded a few 44 Specials with 3f and had fun, but got busy and never got back to it. You've talked me into it!

  3. #3

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    AS for a patch. There is a lubed fiber/felt over the powder wad that is used in C&B revolvers; These help emensely with BP fouling. A beesewax/lanoline bullet lube might help as well. Drop tubes work best with longer rifle type cases and very good on bottle necked BP rifle cases. Not sure what you are shooting or out of what but if you are shooting BP out of a smokeless gun try a finer grade of powder it may well foul less or a different brand of powder may improve your results. ENJOY !!
    " Americans will never need the 2nd Amendment, until the government tries to take it away."

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  4. #4
    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    Are you blowing down your barrel in between every shot? That will loosen up your powder remnants and increase your accuracy at the same time. Talk to folks that visit the BPCR forums online - they will have all kinds of advice - they like to bend ears now and again.

    drill the primer out of a blank case - braze on a tupe of coppper bent to allow easy injection and extraction into the barrel - blow on it two times while counting to 4....that'll help you out some.

    Here's a site of my father-in-laws for your perusal. Steve is a great guy and very sharp with rifles, pistols, and machining tools. brooksmoulds.com

  5. #5
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    I ran a chrono series with Hodgdon's 777 in the FFg size, .45Colt mixed brass, rem 2 1/2 primers, 230gr TC bullet, homemade white lube. Kept everything "cold" in my garage, max temp after loaded maybe +80dF. All powder measurements in grains volume, all loads features a lube cookie under the bullet about 010" thick.

    42.5gr 954, 992, 883, 889, average 929.5 fps muzzle- heavily compressed.

    40.0gr 798, 758, 795, 834, average 796 fps muzzle- compressed a little.

    35.0gr (with a felt wad) 882, 820, 763, 803, average 817fps muzzle.

    30.0gr (with a felt wad) 813, 833, 770, 827, average 811fps muzzle.

    25.0gr (with a felt wad and tapioca filler) 751, 740, 781, average 757fps muzzle.

    I think I am just going to stick with loading a snoot full. Recoil is manageable. I think the lurking variable here is variable compression. They all felt about the same compressed getting the bullets started in the brass, but looking at the chrono velocities I suspect I was "feeling" the bullet find the end of the bell in the brass, rather than feeling charge compression get started.

    OTOH for steel target I know I can load 30.0gr by volume and not fool with the tapioca filler to make energy.

    I expect to turn my attention to the 270SAA over BP and subs in the next few weeks.

  6. #6
    Member jdb3's Avatar
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    Go to http://www.shilohrifle.com/forums/index.php or http://www.bpcr.net/forum/index.php to get all the help you need. Use SPG lube, it will solve many of your problems. You will find out that 777 and the other substitute powders do not work well with cartridge guns. Stick with BP or go to 5744. Jim

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