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Discussion Starter #1
Had a few questions about a 50 cal flint lock muzzle loaded rifle I just bought.

1. What's the difference between .480, .490. ect.?
2. Can i use Sabot rounds with my rifle?
3. How are the pellets used?

If you can put the number that correlates to the question above that would be helpful. Any experiences or questions would also be appreciated as well.
 

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rhales,

Welcome to the Forum; I see this is your first post. I like and shoot several flintlocks. If you bought your rifle new, it should have an instruction booklet that you need to read for a good background on muzzleloaders. I also suggest you buy and read the Lyman Black Powder Handbook. Here are my responses:

1. The difference between .480 and .490 is .010. Most .50 caliber arms accomodate a .490 Ball and a .010 patch. For a tighter fit you may be able to use a .015 patch.

2. Yes, you can probably use Saboted projectiles in your rifle. Again, I suggest you check with your rifle's manufacturer for specifics.

3. Generally, pellets are not suitable for flintlocks because the flame is not "Hot" enough.

I hope this helps. Again, welcome to this site.

Webley
 

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Webley gave you a pretty good answer. I'd only like to ad that there are sabots for round balls and sabots for pistol/rifle type bullets. I'd guess your gun is rifled for round ball shooting. You might want to investigate sabots some more before heading in that direction. Patched round balls are probably going to be your best course of direction with this gun.
 

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Re #3


I'd start with black powder in the barrel main charge and in the flash pan. BP used F as an indication of Fineness. FFFFG is a must for the flash pan...regardless of what you put in the main charge.

Lots of BP 'substitutes' made today. I'd not start with any substitutes , nor should you use any pellets (they are all BP substitutes); as Webley said The flash from the pan will NOT reliable light the main charge. FFG or FFFG are Ok; FFFG is probably a good place to start.

I have 4 flintlocks (3 rifles and one shotgun)...I think you will enjoy the flint experience.

All of my rifles shoot patched round ball the most accurate; rifling and bore dimention mean a lot.

follow the loading instructions that came with the rifle. If you didn't get any; then I'd suggest you buy a book on loading and load data. Lyman's Black Powder Handbook is a very good start.

good luck and enjoy.
 

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You did not mention what model flintlock rifle you purchased. If the rifle is going to shoot sabots, you look for a rifle with a twist of 1-48 or faster. For instance a T/C Hawken flintlock has a 1-48 twist and will shoot 240 grain XTPs pretty good. But a rifle with a slow twist like 1-66 is a roundball twist. And basically they are made to shoot roundball.

I also have flintlocks that have a 1-28 twist which is real fast. These shoot sabots real well, even conicals. So it depends on the twist of the rifle.

There are some flintlocks that claim they can shoot pellets. Normally you get best results if you duplex the pellet with some black powder. But in my experience, if you are shooting a flintlock, you get the best ignition and performance shooting real black powder in the main charge and the pan of course.

What model flintlock did you get?
 

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Had a few questions about a 50 cal flint lock muzzle loaded rifle I just bought.

1. What's the difference between .480, .490. ect.?
2. Can i use Sabot rounds with my rifle?
3. How are the pellets used?

If you can put the number that correlates to the question above that would be helpful. Any experiences or questions would also be appreciated as well.
1. They are different diameters, .490 being the larger. Either can be used in most .50 cal. rifles, depending on your patch thickness.

2. You might be able to use them, but they are not really meant for flintlocks and will not work well. Flintlock pretty much equals patched round balls.

3. They can't be. Loose powder only, and real black powder only. A flintlock simply will not reliably ignite black powder substitutes.
 

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.

FWIW, pellets are unsuitable for ANY sidehammer frontstuffer, beit a flint or a cap lock - because the accelerating/ignition "charge" is on one end of each pellet (the blacker area), where an inline frontstuffer's 209 primer flash will impinge it directly.

Most sidehammer's ignition flash usually hits the pellet somewhere in the side of the rearmost pell.

Use Holy Black.




.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Model

I bought it at a pawn shop and so i do not know who made it and the functions but as soon as i get it (tomorrow) I'll post up a picture and details. Thank you all so much for your help, i really appreciate it. The only problem I'm finding now is getting black powder.
 

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Black Powder because of regulations can be hard to obtain. Many store refuse to carry it due to license fees and insurance regulations. One place to look is at local shooting clubs. Many times you will run into a group of people that purchase it in bulk to kind of soften the shock of the haz mat fees. I purchase in bulk myself... its the only cost effective manner.

Some stores I use is Graf's & Sons. I have been shooting Schuetzen, which is the same as Wano. And equal in strength to Goex. Just a little more soot in it I feel. But a very good powder. I will be interested to see what kind of rifle you purchased. Good luck in your search for powder. And try and find a few new flints for the rifle. I like The Thomas Fuller Black English Flints or the French Amber Flints. But these agates they sell work very well also.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thank you for the advice about the powder. I was looking at bulk powder but that would freak my neighbors ha ha. And loading is just simply pouring the powder then ramming the ball down, placing the cap on the nipple? Or am i missing something?
 

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rhales,

HOW will you "place a cap on the nipple" of your FLINTLOCK?? I think you need to read Lyman's Black Powder Handbook BEFORE you go shooting.

Webley
 

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Thank you for the advice about the powder. I was looking at bulk powder but that would freak my neighbors ha ha. And loading is just simply pouring the powder then ramming the ball down, placing the cap on the nipple? Or am i missing something?

Man, you did buy a pig in a poke, didn't you. Do you even know what a flintlock is?
 

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This could be interesting to watch.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Made a mistake, not a flintlock but percussion. As i was. Thank you all for your help and your criticisms.
 

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At least, since it is a percussion cap model.. while black powder works excellent in them, you are not limited to the hard to find black powder. You can shoot most any of the sub powders other then BlackHorn 209. I would suggest and easy to find, use, measure, and consistent powder is called Pyrodex RS. Get a pound of that and a powder measure. Make sure you purchase a good quality #11 cap. I like the CCI Magnum, Winchester Magnum (made by CCI), RWS, and Remington. Stay away from the standard CCI caps. I have had some ignition problems with them and sub powders, while the magnums are much more reliable.

Good luck with your rifle. Post a picture of it if you have a digital camera. We'd love to see it.
 

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rhales, I apologize if I sounded a bit sarcastic. Such was not the intent at all. I will ask forgiveness and accept the responsibility. Problem is us old muzzleloader shooters of 40+ years find it incredible that a flintlock would be confused with a caplock. I suppose because it's been so long since we started with these wonderful firearms and we forget there was a time we didn't know the difference either.

You've received good advice but I'll throw in my two coppers anyway.

1. The .480-.490 should need no explanation.
2. You can shoot sabots in your rifle but I don't know why you would want to. PRB's are more than adequate and patching can be free. Sabots add another expense.
3. Being the curmudgeonly and contrary sort that I am Black Powder is all I use. None of my muzzleloaders have been fouled by a substitute except for one brief experimenting with Pyrodex in a double 12. Foul stuff. For your 50 cal. either Fffg or Ffg will work just fine. It's less expensive for me, I find it cleans easier, (I will admit, begrudgingly, that I have tried 777, Pyrodex and the old GOEX Clear Shot in BPC rifles) and I have had no better results with substitutes than I get with black.....and as I also shoot a lot of flintlocks whatever I have on hand will work.

As cayugad said, please post pictures!
 
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