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Black powder paper cartridges

5281 Views 3 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Gatofeo
I have read about making BP cartridges on many fourms. Many people
say cigarette papers work well since they are "NITRATED".
Nothing could be further from the truth. Rolling papers are meant to burn
slowly. If they were nitrated the paper would burn to your fingers so quickly the tobacco
would fall out unburned! Spectracide Stump Remover works well to nitrate papers.
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I make my own nitrated paper.
Dissolve a quarter cup of Saltpeter (potassium nitrate) in a quart of distilled water in a glass jar. When dissolved, pour the water into a shallow pan.
If I could find onionskin paper, once common in the days of typewriters, I'd use it. Used my last onionskin years ago, but now I use printer paper, as long as it's not heavy bond or thick.
Cut the 8-1/2 X 11 inch sheet into halves and soak in the solution a few minutes. Hang up with a clothespin to dry (over the sink or bathtub in rainy or cold weather).
Pour the solution back into the jar and screw the lid down tight. The solution is reuseable many times.
The next day, you'll have nitrated paper hanging from clothespins.
I don't often make paper cartridges, but they work fine in my cap and ball revolvers and .50-caliber CVA Mountain Rifle.
Remember, the paper cartridge has to be smaller than the bore! A common mistake is to roll the paper around a 1/2 inch waxed dowel. Wrong! Use a dowel 7/16ths or so, for the .50-caliber.
For the .44 and .45 revolvers, use the same 7/16ths dowel. For the .36, you may have to sand down a 3/8 inch dowel a bit so it produces a paper cartridge slightly smaller than the chamber it slips into.
Paper cartrides would be good for hunting, for carrying pre-measured charges, but I don't hunt. I've made them for experimentation but use a flask at the range.
If I needed a quick reload, however, I'd go with paper cartridges.
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