Sabots in a side lock gun?
I am currently in the middle of Iowa's early muzzleloader season. I killed a large buck with a weird rack(growing into the side of his head...twas a mercy killing) the second morning. I shot this buck in the neck at 15 yards with a 50 cal Lee Real Bullet and he turned off like a switch....obviously. That night I shot a doe standing broadside at 25 yards. She slapped her tail tight to her butt and trotted down a big hill and up the next and out of sight. I found two drops of blood where she jumped over a log. These spots were on opposite sides of the trail indicating a complete pass through. That was it, not another drop of blood to be found. That deer got into a 20 acre tangle that you would need a good blood trail to find her. I lost that one and I hate it. Then yesterday morning I shot a big doe at 40 yards and again offering me a perfect broadside shot. I put the front sight just behind the point in her elbow and squeezed it off. Again no blood trail. I went to the last place I saw her as she jumped the fence exiting the timber and entering a standing corn field. Three hours later I found her dead in a water way. She had a 50 cal entrance hole and a 50 cal exit hole and lost very little blood to the outside world. Infact it looked like those bullet holes had clotted off.
I have shot 240 grain XTPs through 44s long enough to know that large, short blood trails are always the case if hit where these two deer were hit. The velocity of of a XTP out of my 44 Marlin and out of a sabot in a 50 cal muzzleloader are about the same.
I put a tight patch on the jag and pushed it down the barrel on my White Mountain Carbine and the result was the ramrond rotated exactly one turn in the length of the short 21 inch barrel. I would think that would stabalize a sabot.
Have any of you guys shot sabotted projectiles out of a sidelock gun? Is it worth trying? BrownBear can you help me out? I am liking carrying the sidelock gun like the days of old so going back to one of my inlines will be a last resort!
They work great with a faster twist- in my experience with 50 cal, that's anything 1:48 or faster. They've been fine in my TCs @ 1:48 and my Lyman Great Plains Hunter @ 1:32 twist. My hunting pard traveled to Missouri a few years back and shot his very large whitetail (largest weighed in the county that year, but I don't remember the #'s) with his TC Hawken using a 240 XTP in a sabot.
As big an issue as twist rate is depth of rifling. Really deep rifling like on the premium round ball guns can result in a lot of plastic fouling, I think due to some gas blow-by happening. I'm betting your White Mountain Carbine has shallow rifling since it's got such a fast twist. Good deal. I know powder pellets don't work worth a hoot in sidelocks, but no sweat otherwise.
One thing I will say, I have always been a little leery of the REAL for game because it's got no "meplat." A hunting pard uses the 395 grain Lyman Plains Bullet for impressive quick kills and exits.
I've been shooting my deer with pure lead round balls, and I get quick kills and great blood trails. I've only recovered one from a deer, a .530 that finished life under the hide on the far side and just barely shy of an inch wide while retaining close to 90% of its weight. Kinda explains the large exit holes I've been seeing, doesn't it! The one I shot last year with a 50 cal RB at around 50 yards dropped flat at the shot, staggered up and took about three steps and collapsed for good. That was a fairly stout load of 90 grains of 3f Goex. You could drop a golf ball into the exit.
Since my last post I went digging through stuff from yester year...for crying out loud, I have probably 500 Hornady .490 round balls and almost that many Oxyoke patches still in the bag. I'm laughing at myself as I type this....I found two unopened cans of Pyrodex RS with a price of $9.19 per can. How long ago do you suppose thats been. I'm headed to the range (only 4 miles) to do some playing!
Kinda funny how an old guys mind works. All those fancy shooting sticks don't do anything for me anymore. Sidelock muzzleloaders, leverguns and I just recently bought my first longbow( I ain't worth shucks with it yet though).
I'll let you know how it goes!
I dont think your twist or anything has to do with it. Comes down to poor bullet performance in this case I think. But sounds like you got it figured out now with those roundballs. At those distances you have been shooting at, I dont think youll need to worry about tracking. Now where are the pictures of this hunt?
One thing to watch with that fast twist, shallow rifling and patched round balls- As the powder charge and velocity go up, so should the tightness of the patch/ball combo. A loose fit appears to start "slipping" past the rifling a little and accuracy starts to suffer at some point.
I've never had it happen in 1:48 and slower, but in my 1:32 GPR groups started to open as I went above 60 grains of 3f Goex with .490 and .015- on the order of 2-3" at 50 yards by the time I got to 80 grains. Still huntable, but not great. Switching up to .490 and .018 helped, but .020 really helped- on the order of 1" at 50 with 80 grains of 3f. Of course, I had to really whack the short starter to get that combo into the bore, but once started, it seated easy enough with the rod. I had similar experiences with a 1:24 54 caliber, ultimately going from .530/.015 to .535/.018. If you have trouble finding thicker patching, you could go to a .495 with your current patches, I bet.
Great to meet you yesterday Matt! And speaking of pics, I hope you can connect with Ron P. and share pics of the results. Of course, seeing the completed rifle first hand on a hunt with me would be even better!
Just got back from shooting a few roundballs. I shot a couple, cranked the sight down a bit shot a couple more, then down two clicks and the next one went in the black. I was shooting 80 grains of Pyrodex RS and the patches are .015.
After the initial short sight in I swabbed the bore and shot three more round balls. The first(a fouling shot of sorts) was on the edge of the black at 12 o'clock the next two were touching and in the middle of the target.....and I smiled! The target was a b3 rimfire target and the distance today was but 40 yards. However the wind right now is strong out of the west and there is a very heavy draw the deer like to use going south to north when the wind is like it is today. I have a stand on the east side of this draw and it puts me in bow range so the round baller hitting at 40 yards will be way good enough!
I'll take the camera and get some pictures. If the moderators don't mind(this is an Alaskan forum) I'll post a few.
Sounds like a perfect setup to me!
Hopefully you're as pleased with RBs on game as I have been. It's enough to make me suspect ALL of the hype for modern alternatives in muzzleloaders. Rainbow trajectories yes, but poor killers within their range? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!
It was nice to meet you to. I appologize we couldnt have visited some more. That kid is a handful. I already called Ron. I didnt get a hold of him though. But Ill try him again tonight
Don't know about a sidelock, but my inline (NEF SIDEKICK) hates sabot bullets. Works OK with POWERBELTS. Best bullet I have found (ie shoots best w/ great accuracy) is a bullet called THOR. It is a solid copper full bore- no sabot or plastic skirt. They have to be sized to your particular rifle, but the company will send you a size kit (contains 4 differant diameter bullets) FREE. You then try each bullet to find the correct fit. Right now they only have .50 cal bullets in either 250 or 300gr (I shoot 300gr). There are plans for .45 cal in the future.
I buy them in a package of 15 for about $20.00 with shipping.
Interested in trying out the Thor bullet? Simply email or call Thor bullets and Request a Free Sizing sample.
All it takes is a Phone call or an Email.
Phone: (660) 244-5251
MODERATORS: If inapprop to list contact info- feel free to delete that part.
Here's the buck that I weeded out of the gene pool and the doe I got tonight with a roundball.
Here's a few shots of the timber.
Looks like your hunt planning paid off. I sure like the looks of that country!
What's your early impression from using round balls?
She was under my stand at an angle so i was shooting down at her. The ball hit her high in the rib cage went through her heart and exited in the middle of her brisket. She was out of blood in 30 yards. Thats about as good as it gets!
Originally Posted by BrownBear
I hunted some when I was young with a Springfield Hawkens and shot round balls in it. I was a kid then and didn't pay much attention to detail. I also got one of the White Mountain Carbines when they first came out but never shot anything but conicals in it as I recall. I still have that gun but it was kid sized for my son when he was young. He shot a couple of deer with it using Real bullets and they didn't go far but one was spined and the other through both front shoulders.
I shot the White Mountain that I now use a little more this afternoon before heading for the stand. One thing I noticed is that when using the tight Oxyoke patches you are almost cleaning as you shoot. That tight,lubed patch is cleaning as the ball is seated. I shot 10 rounds without cleaning between shots and the last round landed as true as the first.
I don't know guys but that doe I shot tonight seemed just a little more special because of what I shot her with. I've got three inlines and tomorrow two of them are going on the rack at the store and when they sell I think I'll buy another side hammer gun or maybe a Patriot pistol.
The buck I shot was killed on sunday. He was a typical 5 on one side and had that goofy ingrown horn on the other side. The rut is just around the corner and I decided to cull him from the herd before he bred any does. The blood on his head isn't from the horn but rather because he was very close so I shot him in the ear hole!
Are you having fun, or what?
Oh yeah! I live for this time of year. I'm headed to the back yard to pratize with my bow...it's up next!
Originally Posted by BrownBear