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Thread: converting a 54cal Muzzle loader to a BPCR

  1. #1
    Member whateveri8's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Juneau - Auke Bay

    Default converting a 54cal Muzzle loader to a BPCR

    I live and hunt Southeast AK where it is wet and rains buckets of water as most of y'all know who live in 192" of rainfall a year.

    For you M/L hunters out there can attest to the thrill of a smoke stick taking down any game.

    I have not hunted smoke sticks in a very long time, but this year I've been considering getting out the ol' 54cal, but my friends laugh and say it's way too wet to field a smoke pole, so I thought about building a BPCR in a 54 cal. Using either a T/C encore or a Ruger #1 and then build a barrel for it. There has got to be a 54 cal BPCR wildcat out there somewhere. Any ideas on what it would be?
    God, Guns and Guts is what made America Great

  2. #2


    Whew. No clue, other than to say when you move over 50 caliber your choices in cases suitable for a BPCR round go down fast. Even my 450 Alaskan, based on the 348 case doesn't have much taper or neck left. I know they make a 50 on it, but 54 might well be over the edge. I've got a Sharpes 50-140, and that case may be a mile long, but it's straight as a ruler front to back. Looking at the possibilities in Donnelly's "Manual of Cartridge Conversions," about the only parent case that looks to have possibilities is the 577 Nitro Express from BELL. And I'm here to tell you that you're going to dump a bunchabux into a custom chamber reamer and gunsmithing services PLUS custom sizing dies. I've done that route with some of my own hairbrained wildcats, and it's pretty easy to dump $500 plus in reamer, gunsmith and dies, over and above the cost of the basic rifle.

    What make and model is your ML anyway? If you're really set on a BPCR, it might make more sense to peddle it and apply the money to a BPCR.

    I'm kinda wondering at your friends' push to convert it in the first place. We're "only" sporting 120" of rain here, but work-arounds for muzzleloaders are pretty straight up. I have three friends who have used nothing but flintlocks in this climate for the last 30 years, and with simple precautions honestly have little or no problem with misfires. I'm not there yet with my flinters, but my cappers are pretty much rainproof.

  3. #3
    Member rimfirematt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Eagle River


    Gotta agree with BrownBear on this one. Dont knock it till you try it. I have often tried to make my muzzleloaders not go boom, but they always do. Even my flintlocks. Ive dropped them in the snow, a quick wipe of the frizzen and they will go off.

    take the simple precautions like a calfs knee over a flintlock, tape over the muzzle, and I dont think youll have anything to worry about.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    East-central Alaska


    I lived in southeast Ak for 27 years and hunted with a flinter most of the time. Had more hang fires with my percussed rifles. As suggested use a calfs knee cover (can be oiled canvas, leather, etc.), also change the percussion cap out every half hour when hunting in wet conditions. If using a flinter, prime from your horn or flask with your main charge powder instead of using ffffg. ffg, fffg are graphite coated to reduce moisture absorbsion, ffffg is not coated and can become a mess in the pan real quick.


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