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Wily Willie

Are paper cartridges made with nitrocellulose paper [see note] and/or dipped in collodion banned under the rule against mixing BP and smokeless powder?

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These are both historical practices used by at least one significant civil-war era paper cartridge producer, Johnston and Dow. Neither involves smokeless powder (as such), and neither seems to have been motivated by a desire for increased power or more reliable ignition of the black powder (the two typical goals of BP+smokeless duplex loads); their patents indicate strength, water-proofing, and complete combustibility (i.e., not leaving smoldering bits of paper behind) as the goals. But they do both involve the use of (small quantities of) nitrocellulose, in one form or another.

 

Note: I know that the term "nitrated paper" is sometimes used by current black powder shooters to refer to paper impregnated with potassium nitrate, and I've seen claims that this is how the term was used at the time. That may well be the case. But Johnston and Dow's patent #34,061 specifically states: "Paper, cloth, or other fabric or textile material is first converted into gun-cotton, or its equivalent, in the usual manner, viz: by treatment with nitric acid (NO5) in combination with sulphuric acid, (SO3,) or with a nitrate—as nitrate of potash (KONO5)—and sulphuric acid in combination."

 

(And no, I don't know why both nitric acid and potassium nitrate have too much oxygen in their formulas; they're like that in the original.)

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I would suggest that the cartridge paper is NOT powder, and thus would be allowed to be used with BP without being considered a duplex load.

 

But I am surprised you were able to create such a lengthy title to a post.  :o:lol:

 

Good luck, GJ

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I agree with GJ. However I am curious why you would want to go to the trouble of creating paper cartridges in the first place?

Scout

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4 hours ago, Cowtown Scout, SASS #53540 L said:

I agree with GJ. However I am curious why you would want to go to the trouble of creating paper cartridges in the first place?

Scout

 

Then why shoot a cap gun in the first place? 

 

Looks to me that paper cartridges were used extensively through the War of Northern Agression and probably were made or bought until modern cartridge guns made them obsolete.  

 

We shot with a great cowboy weekend before last that had a new pair of 58s and completely new setup for loading paper cartridges made with conical bullets he'd cast.  Faster?  Batter?  I couldn't say.  The way it was done back then?  Very likely. 

 

 

Edited by Warden Callaway
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I've tried them and went back to loose powder.  They are great, but very tedious to make.  If you like to keep your hands busy while watching TV or just sitting around then go for it.  For me it was just to tedious.

The modern Colt replicas will require some extra work to use paper cartridges, there is not enough room between the cylinder mouth and frame to insert the cartridges.  I don't know if that is also true for Remington models.

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This is just my take on paper cartridges. It doesn't take much time to roll up enough to take to a match with you. They load into the gun very easy, they go bang when you pull the trigger, they make it so you're not fooling around with loose powder and ball at the range. They really do save time. 

 

Here's a short little video I made, on how I make the cartridges. There are many different ways to do it, this is just how I make them. It's very simple. As always, YMMV.

 

 

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I tried making paper cartridges for my Pietta 1860s. For me it is too much work and not worth grinding the barrel assembly for loading. I did not like the bits of paper remaining in the chambers after firing even when using potassium nitrated paper. I have been told that flash paper works much better but have not tried it. A powder flask and round ball with lube on top has never let me down.

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The rule was never intended to disallow paper cartridges due to the type paper used.

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Always thought the saying - "roll yer own" was cool :D 

 

GG ~ :FlagAm:

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