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Black powder shotshell questions


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To clarify for those new to BP please list if your powder charge is by actual weight or in BP grains which is rather arbitrary.

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Paper vs plastic and throwing donut holes.       

I just sat down after spending the last hour loading 8 boxes of BP shells on my MEC Grabber..... Yes, I load Real Black on a progressive MEC Grabber and have been for about 20 years.....  I

More details on my homemade priming tool.     I took a scrap of wood. Happened to be an oak survey stake. Installed a hinge. Closed it over and drilled a hole of the appropriate si

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I use 2 scoops of  Scheutzen 1F, 2 scoops of 7-12 shot, brass 3-1/2" shells, nitro, fiber and over shot Walters Wads and Duco Cement in my AyA 10 gauge double. My scoop size is confidential because of liability concerns. I use a similar loading in the 4" brass shells in my 8" gauge double.

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8 hours ago, Marshall Dillon said:

Did the line of elmers go away cleanly when shot?

Yes.  No sign of it.

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I've changed how I load BP plastic hulls from when I made this video.   I now use a MEC 600jr to size/deprime and seat new primer instead of Lee.  I just dip powder and shot. I've got a "kit" stored in a small plastic box.  I still roll crimp using the BPI roller.  

 

 

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@Marshall Dillon  Here are a couple things to keep in mind.  When you make up your SG rounds (whatever load you decide on) before you make a bunch take a few of the shells out and pattern them.  Shot shells are not like cartridges, change the amount of charge, change the amount of shot, change the column height and you’ll get different results.  When you pattern them you’re looking for a spread that is consistent, you don’t want to make a doughnut with a hole in the middle.  Using what’s considered a square load (for the distance we shoot) is usually good enough.  

 

Wads - two schools of thought here.  When loading brassies you can use either plastic or fiber wads.  The plastic wads are faster to load than fiber, but cleaning plastic out of the barrels takes longer than fiber.  Others will argue that cleaning after plastic is easy enough, you’ll have to see for yourself.  If you use plastic hulls you won’t have a choice you’ll have to use plastic wads.

 

BP in Plastic Hulls - BP and BP Subs are burn hotter than that heathen smokeless so you’re only going to get one maybe two reloads with plastic hulls before they become too brittle.  If you load brassies, as long as no one steps on them they’ll last a lifetime.

 

Thin wall vs. thick wall hulls - most brass hulls, like Magtech, are thin wall, you can still buy thick wall hulls but they are a lot more money.  The thin wall use a LPP while the thick wall use a 209 primer.  Also, the size of wad and overshot card will be different between thick and thin wall.

 

Roll crimping - if you’re using a SxS SG then brassies don’t need to be rolled, I can’t speak for the 97’s.  Roll crimps make putting in wads and cards a PIA not impossible but a little more challenging.  The roll crimp on brass shells won’t come out after shooting.  With plastic hulls roll crimping takes more time than star crimping but with the roll crimp you can get a better seal over the shot.  

 

I hope this helps, maybe a little to basic for your knowledge level, so please don’t be insulted.

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7 hours ago, Sedalia Dave said:

Use Cheddite primers in your hulls. They are about 0.0005" larger in diameter and shouldn't fall out. 

Have you been sneaking into my reloading room? You seem to know what is in there. I have a case of 5,000 cheddite primers that resides less then 1 ft from where that old roll crimper was laying. My “maybe take to the gun show someday and sell shelf”. I bought them and never used them shooting trap because i was warned (after i bought) that they would enlarge my primer holes in my hulls. I had forgotten that. Thanks!

 

5 hours ago, Mud Marine,SASS#54686 Life said:

 My scoop size is confidential because of liability concerns. I use a similar loading in the 4" brass shells in my 8" gauge double.

Hmmm.... you spelled shovel wrong. :)

 

22 minutes ago, Tequila Shooter said:

If you use plastic hulls you won’t have a choice you’ll have to use plastic wads.

 

 

  Clarify on this? I did a couple with fiber wads last night in plastic hulls. I have not shot them yet.

 

3 hours ago, Warden Callaway said:

I've changed how I load BP plastic hulls from when I made this video.   I now use a MEC 600jr to size/deprime and seat new primer instead of Lee.  I just dip powder and shot. I've got a "kit" stored in a small plastic box.  I still roll crimp using the BPI roller.  

I am sitting here this morning wondering where i will find the space to set up another reloading area for black powder shells. The simple “kit” style is looking attractive. I see no easy way to adapt my ponsness warren to this. 

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I use a square load of Goex 2f. A 1oz shot dipper of powder and 1oz of 71/2 shot. Powder then nitro card fiber wad then shot. I load thru my MEC jr. I like to roll crimp and use the old crimping tool but have been sort of lazy and use the roll crimper from Ballistic shooting products in my drill press. If I am feeling lazy then I use a plastic wad and star crimp.

 

 

Hochbauer

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Standard 2F Goex is what I use, but a "cleaner" option is Olde Eynsford (Goex). Plastics wads are no big deal. All comes out when cleaning the barrels under hot water.

 

GG ~ :FlagAm:

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58 minutes ago, Gunner Gatlin, SASS 10274L said:

Standard 2F Goex is what I use, but a "cleaner" option is Olde Eynsford (Goex). Plastics wads are no big deal. All comes out when cleaning the barrels under hot water.

 

GG ~ :FlagAm:

Does it throw good smoke? I like the big smoke,,,

 

i cannot remove the barrel on the lever gun to clean it under water. 

Edited by Marshall Dillon
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The plastic hulls will be the problem so far. After i trim the crimp from the fired hull, it is 2.187 long. Then after roll crimping, it is about 2.06 long. The lever shotgun did not really feed them good. On one i managed to get trimmed to about 2.36 and roll crimped,,,cycled considerably better. Trimming half of the 8 point star crimp and getting it to roll crimp does not look very hopeful to me so far. I threw away about 20 cases this morning trying. 

 

Brand new hulls 2.50 long are expensive i see, if they were available. 

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16 minutes ago, Marshall Dillon said:

Does it throw good smoke? I like the big smoke,,,

 

i cannot remove the barrel on the lever gun to clean it under water. 

Sure does...

 

 

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1 minute ago, Marshall Dillon said:

Was that film the goex or the Olde Eynsford ?

 Regular Goex - I used the Olde Eynsford a few times and it seems to make near the same amount of smoke - that was back in '17. Target gets obscured. I think you'd be good with either in the smoke department. As a powder they do look a little different - the OE being more consistent in granulation.

 

GG ~ :FlagAm:

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3 hours ago, Marshall Dillon said:

i cannot remove the barrel on the lever gun to clean it under water

 

Go to the hardware store and buy a rubber cork that will plug the muzzle end of the barrel. Stand the gun up so that the barrel is down and fill up to chamber level with hot water and a little ballistol. Let sit while you clean all your other firearms. The pull out the cork and drain the water. Starting at the breech end push a patch through he barrel. The plastic fouling with come right out.

 

BTW Be careful immersing SXS barrels in water. It can get into the space between the barrels and be very hard to remove. This can cause corrosion that you can't see until its too late.

Edited by Sedalia Dave
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3 hours ago, Marshall Dillon said:

The plastic hulls will be the problem so far. After i trim the crimp from the fired hull, it is 2.187 long. Then after roll crimping, it is about 2.06 long. The lever shotgun did not really feed them good. On one i managed to get trimmed to about 2.36 and roll crimped,,,cycled considerably better. Trimming half of the 8 point star crimp and getting it to roll crimp does not look very hopeful to me so far. I threw away about 20 cases this morning trying. 

 

Brand new hulls 2.50 long are expensive i see, if they were available. 

 

The price of brass hulls have gone up they were $25 a box.

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6 minutes ago, Tequila Shooter said:

 

The price of brass hulls have gone up they were $25 a box.

I paid $25.99/box when I ordered from BPI.

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3 minutes ago, Chief Rick said:

I paid $25.99/box when I ordered from BPI.

 

$33.99 now at BPI and they’re out of stock.  Who knows how much they’ll be when they get stock again.

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1 minute ago, Tequila Shooter said:

 

$33.99 now at BPI and they’re out of stock.  Who knows how much they’ll be when they get stock again.

Three boxes ought to last me for a while.:D

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18 hours ago, Frontier Lone Rider said:

They recommend not running black powder through regular powder drop measures...

Because their lawyers are fearful beings... not enough uncommon good sense to rely of factual data vs. rumors and "what-if" scenarios... 

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20 hours ago, Marshall Dillon said:

 Garrison joe, i went looking for those 12 ga rcbs dies. Midway says “discontinued”

still looking for a roll crimp tool for brass shells

Here:  https://www.huntingtons.com/store/product.php?productid=19678.  RCBS nor HDS (which is right next door), say "discontinued"... And if anyone would know, it'd be these two.

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18 hours ago, irish ike, SASS #43615 said:

To each his own. But there have been many posts and studies showing that static electricity isn't an issue with real BP. Not sure about subs. I load BP through my MEC 600 and my Dillon powder drops.

 

The idahoan show that did an experiment trying to make a muzzleloader with an improved arcing device as the ignition source.  here's a link for those interested in his results https://www.thereloadersnetwork.com/2020/12/04/electronic-muzzleloader-initial-scoping-test/?channel=theidahoanshow.

 

18 hours ago, Sedalia Dave said:

The issue with running real black powder has NOTHING to do with static electricity. The issue is that there could be a piece of foreign material in the powder that could get caught in the powder measure and cause a spark.

that makes sense based on the Idahoan's example he shows.

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22 hours ago, Marshall Dillon said:

Did the line of elmers go away cleanly when shot?

 

image.png.10afe7b0c352298d41c1a686b12d51b8.png

 

this one keeps coming back... sometimes he's cleaner than others...

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1 hour ago, Griff said:

Here:  https://www.huntingtons.com/store/product.php?productid=19678.  RCBS nor HDS (which is right next door), say "discontinued"... And if anyone would know, it'd be these two.

I ordered from them, but there is no way to pay on website. I called the phone number as instructed,,but they do not answer.

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RCBS still catalogs the 12 gauge dies.  See https://www.rcbs.com/dies-and-shell-holders/shotshell/cowboy-shotshell-die/16-99060.html.  They are backordered but you can be notified when the dies are back in stock.

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The RCBS shell holder is a useful tool.  There is no need for the die. It will only fit in press with the 1-1/4" x 12 thread anyway. 

 

I use this high-tech tool to knock primers out of Magtech brass. Just a Lee primer punch and a 12ga plastic wad with petals cut off.

 

5a8c7fc67371e_BrasshullprimerpunchFeb2018.jpg.97931ef71ad54ba17cc526aab7335c2f.jpg

 

Here is how I prime using the RCBS 12 guage shell holder. 

5a8c7fe27bb7e_Prime12gaugebrasshullsFeb2018.jpg.d4569f1d8625a86e8d8c6b1890b8e914.jpg

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I stopped at 4 gunshops and all i could find was pyrodex, so i bought the only two cans they had. As soon as i get home,,buffalo arms email says black powder in stock. I ordered 10 pounds. 

 

Should i sell the pyrodex at next gun show or load it?

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I'd go ahead and load it, BUT, and there are people who will argue this, I've found Pyrodex to be much more corrosive than anything else. When I have it, all I use it in is shotshells. After a match, clean the gun well, then check it the next day... and the next, til you're satisfied there is no rust spotting appearing.

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Just load the Pyrodex, but keep it dry.  Unlike real black powder it absorbs moisture from the air and ignition becomes unreliable.  You will shoot up two cans rather quickly.  I might shoot it at local matches and save the real black powder for major matches.  

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8 minutes ago, Three Foot Johnson said:

I'd go ahead and load it, BUT, and there are people who will argue this, I've found Pyrodex to be much more corrosive than anything else. When I have it, all I use it in is shotshells. After a match, clean the gun well, then check it the next day... and the next, til you're satisfied there is no rust spotting appearing.

Windex multi-surface cleaner with vinegar is a good cleaning solution for Pyrodex fouling.

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