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i've shot a cva hawken for years now and have taken a few deer with it. now the accuracy bug has bitten and i'm trying to wring smaller and smaller groups out of it. it's very frustrating!
i feel like i'm chasing my tail with all the factors that seem to matter. i think that about 75 gr ff pyrodex seems best, moderate pressure down on the ball onto the powder - don't want to crush the powder grains much. at best, i'm getting about 3 to 4 inches at 50 yds. sometimes i get crazy vertical strings - the rifle has a mind of it's own!! what are you experienced guys getting with round balls? i'm sure it's much better. any guidance out there?
 

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Next time out, try kicking that charge to 85 grains. A lot of Hawkin rifles like powder. I have a CVA St Louis Hawkins (nothing fancy) and it likes 90 grains of powder and a .490 ball and patch. Another thing you can try is adding a wad. Sometimes it helps sometimes it does not. All you can do is try.
 

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Also make sure your tang screw is tight.

In our 50 cva hawken its old load was between 80-90gr Pyrodex RS .015 patch and .490 round ball.

Its NEW load as of earlier last week is 90gr American Pioneer 2f, .018 pillow ticking patch and .490 round ball. I fired 2 shots that day @100 yards and they were 1" apart.

Whats your current load that you are shooting now? Are your sights the original or replacements?
 

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These guy have given good advice

Experimenting with different powder charges may help. My muzzleloaders have strong preferences for different patch thicknesses. I vary between .010" and .015" patches and it does make a difference. Your rifle will let you know what it prefers. Take care...
Oberndorf
 

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Accuracy



Lyman Great Plains Rifle - Flintlock.
90 grs. Goex FFg
0.030 fiber wad
.490 LRB
0.010" patch
The group is at 100 yards benched. I don't normally shoot at 100 yards; this was for a contest.
Pete
 

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I put a Green Mountain bbl on my Hawken, and the first range session used .490 RB with .015" patch, got 4-5" groups, very disappointing. I shoot only black powder in this bbl. Green Mountain recommended .495 RB and .018" patch, wow, what a difference. I now regularly use the 495 ball, powder charge has stayed the same and I have varied patch thickness and lube to fine tune the load. Hope this helps.(PS you do have to wipe the bbl more often to get this load seated at longer range sessions)
 

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Every element of the load - ball size, patch material and thickness, type and amount of lube, type and amount of powder, brand of cap, loading pressure - can be varied and, one at a time, varying them is what needs to be done. Try, and try again. Three to four inches at 50 yards is a start -- but your rifle will do better.
 

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i've shot a cva hawken for years now and have taken a few deer with it. now the accuracy bug has bitten and i'm trying to wring smaller and smaller groups out of it. it's very frustrating!
i feel like i'm chasing my tail with all the factors that seem to matter. i think that about 75 gr ff pyrodex seems best, moderate pressure down on the ball onto the powder - don't want to crush the powder grains much. at best, i'm getting about 3 to 4 inches at 50 yds. sometimes i get crazy vertical strings - the rifle has a mind of it's own!! what are you experienced guys getting with round balls? i'm sure it's much better. any guidance out there?
Vertical stringing is normaly attributed to changes in velocity, which could be due to the charge be insufficient, or the charge not being ignited properly every time. I would try first different primers then increase the charge by 5 grains and test fire for accuracy, and keep increasing till uit gets better.

There is one more thing that can cause vertical stringing and that is shooting in head wind or tail winds. Try any kind of a wind flag and watch to shoot each shot at the same wind velocity. A simply wind flag is to tie a piece of the yellow or orange caution tape to a stick planted in the ground. Stick should be at least 2 1/2 feet above ground and tape about 1 1/2 to 2 feet. Put the wind flag in line with your shooting target, if you're right eyed just left of you line of vision, if left eyed to your right. This will always help you to shoot better groups. Competition shooters wouln't dream of shooting without wind flags. :)
 
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