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Blackhorn 209

40503 Views 34 Replies 18 Participants Last post by  James Gates
Supposedly its non-corrosive. Which is why I'm real interested. Has anyone tried it?
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I have shot a lot of Blackhorn 209. First off.. it is POWERFUL. When you shoot it, you know. So if your shooting 100 grains of black powder, then you need to reduce that to 80 grains of Black Horn 209. Because of the way it ignites, you should use a good 209 primer. I was using Winchester W209 and never had a problem with making it go off. But they tell you not to use the low powder primers made to reduce crud rings in muzzleloaders. Just not enough flame. Also not all inlines will shoot BH209. Certain shapes of the breech plug will give you ignition problems. If your shooting an open breech rifle like a CVA Staghorn, or T/C Black Diamond.. while it will go off, it might blow the primer back in your face. So I suggest only a closed breech system like the Omega, Triumph, Accura, etc.

Also you can not use water to clean the rifle. Solvent must be used. This stuff does not like water at all. Hoppes, or other quality solvents will take the fouling right out of the barrel. Also you do not have to swab between shots. You just keep shooting.

Accuracy with this powder is excellent. It must be compressed very tightly. And also a tight fitting sabot makes better accuracy then a loose. In fact too loose and you do not get the power out of the powder. But if your find the right charge, and the right projectile. This will seem like the greatest thing you ever shot.

Personally I have seen the price drop on this powder which is a good thing. If it were sold locally near me I would shoot a lot more of it, but I can get the same accuracy and power with other powders.
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The Winchester W209 primers worked fine for me. There are others out there that also work. But primers like the Remington Kleenbore and the Winchester Triple Seven primers should be avoided because they are made to not produce as much flame.
I honestly do not think there is any powder that is "non corrosive." After reading that article Ralph posted, it makes sense why when I was emailing back and fourth with with Don at Western Powder about BlackHorn 209 he pointed out several times that no water was needed to clean it, and no water should be used to swab it. Makes sense now. Thank you Ralph.

If you remember a few things about the powder, remember this; the hotter the 209 primer the better, be careful of the breech design, the breech plug, and compress that load in a good tight setting... this stuff is the real deal. It will really shoot. One other thing I forgot to mention. When I was testing it, the first couple shots out of the barrel were not as accurate as say... shots 3-10. That is were they really got accurate for me. Maybe the barrel needed to foul out a little.
Has anyone used this powder in a cva optima? I bought some and I'm having ignition trouble, I get hangfires and no fires. Sometimes the second primer will set it off, but once I had to pull the breech plug and empty the bore. That time I had to pull the breech plug I found the bullet and powder charge had been pushed up the bore about 2 inches but no boom, yes the load was seated in the first place. 100gr of BH209 and a hornady sabot, cci standard 209 primers, flash hole was clear every time. Do I need a magnum primer or to alter my breech plug? At this point I sure wouldn't trust it to hunt with, I'm using triple 7 for now, never had a bit of trouble with that. Thanks

On some other forums I frequent, a similar problem was mentioned by an Optima shooter. What they discovered is the design of the breech plug was not conducive to the ignition of the powder. There was even a person well skilled/trained in metal fabrication that was making breech plugs that would insure that when used with BlackHorn 209 and a HOT 209 primer, you got instant ignition. The breech plug design and the type of primer is critical to the consistent ignition of this powder. Also a tight fitting projectile is needed and the powder must be compressed tightly. I would guess your problem lies somewhere in this area.

Some BlackHorn shooters have even made hand drills by gluing a #64 drill bit (I believe it was) into a wooden dowel. Then before shooting they use that as basically a nipple pick. They clean the fire channel of the breech plug. Blackhorn in some rifles have been depositing a carbon like substance in the breech plug, there by reducing the amount of fire from the primer to the powder and hence creating hang fires or misfires.

When I tested BlackHorn I noted that the Knight Disc rifle I was using had a very hard, almost impossible to clean breech plug. As much as I liked the powder, after two pounds of BlackHorn, I threw the breech plug away. Although in all fairness to the powder, the plug was very old, and worn before the first charge of blackhorn ever went into the rifle.
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I currently use 777 FFg in my .54 cal lyman deerstalker flintlock, and use FFFFg goex to kickstart it per Hodgdon's instructions. It fires reliably. I may switch to BH 209. I chose to use 777 since it yields better velocities in my shorter deerstalker barrel than straight BP, and also stretches my Goex further since I have to drive a ways to buy it. Looking at Blackhorn's website, I didn't see any load data or information suggesting use in a flintlock. Perhaps that may come in time? I'd be leary of trying it without it having been proven by the manufacturer though, but think it should be quite doable.
I personally would not do it. BlackHorn 209 is not made for flintlocks, cap locks, even some inlines with the wrong kind of breech plugs. It might work for you but BlackHorn from all the shooting of it I have done, likes a good tight well compressed load. That is not the case when you have a touch hole on the side. In a flintlock, all I ever use is pure black powder.
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