Like many, my eye are not what they used to be, so I take opportunities to mount scopes on many of my rifles. I do not purchase high end scopes unless the rifle had some real plans of use. Normally I do target shooting with most of my rifles. So on them I mount a simple 4x32mm scope. I got kind of hooked on a $39.95 Simmons Pro Diamond Shotgun/muzzleloader scope from Natches.Com. For their cost, they are just exceptional.
These scopes have great glass, and clarity is excellent. Eye relief is four inches or better so they are not coming back and pounding your hat. I mount them on my Renegades with Traditions Quick Release mounts and just have fun. Well today was unlike most days in Northern Wisconsin, sunny little wind, and actually not snowing. My target was only at 30 yards as I can not move the stands as they are frozen to the ground. Next year I am going to put a target stand on a tobaggon so I can slide it back and fourth over the snow to different distances. But this year I am kind of sunk.
I have just started to seriously shoot my .45 caliber stainless steel Green Mountain Barrel. It is mounted in a Renegade Stock and is percussion cap. I use CCI Magnum caps and they work great. Although today (my fault) I did have a hangfire. So I put on my snow boots and wandered out to the target stand.
With the target in place, I proceeded to shoot. I swabbed the barrel with alcohol and then dry patched it. I also popped about three caps through it to clean it all out. I decided to start the day with 85 grains of Triple Seven 3f powder and some 180 grain Speer Gold Dot hollow points in light blue Harvester Crushed Rib sabots. I did swab between shots. I wanted to see if the scope came back to where it should be after having been taken off to clean the rifle last time.
I fired five times. I think that bottom plug has three hits. I can not think that I missed the target at that range. I like groups like that. Even if it is 30 yards. My average shot around here is under 50 yards.
I then cleaned the rifle with some Simple Green. I wanted to kick up the charge to see how the bullets behaved. Here was where I made the mistake of not making sure the barrel was bone dry.
I loaded 100 grains of the Triple Seven 3f and my first shot was a tickkkk... boom! Hangfire!! but I held it pretty close. I then decided to shoot a couple more without swabbing to make sure the barrel was good, clear and dry. Those were the two hits at the top of the bull. So I went back to my swabbing with alcohol and dry patching between shots and fired three more. They were stringing, so I will have to play with some charges it pull that string in.
Overall, 85 grains of powder and that bullet should make a good deer load at the distances I hunt. Accuracy wise, it is a good shooting load with little to no recoil. Also this stainless steel barrel when I shoot Triple Seven is a real joy to clean. I took the scope off, pulled the barrel from the stock (as usual) and gave it a water bath. Two patches and they were coming out clean already... You can't ask for more then that...