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Seen a couple guys shooting their muzzle loaders with regular patched balls as normal.   Except that they folded up a piece of cloth about 2" square and put in down the barrel on top of the powder before they rammed down the patched ball.  When I asked about it they said it was good for accuracy.   Has anyone every heard of this or done it to improve accuracy?  By the way, these fellows were shooting Kentucky type rifles and were shooting OK.  
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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I have heard of using hornet nest material for the same purpose.  It is supposed to help protect the patch, not sure how that works exactly.

Having neither a muzzleloader nor the desire to mess with a hornet nest.... I have not tried this myself.  

Sounds like the same principle, though.
 

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Hi, HV:
Double patching is a well known trick. (It doesn't mean two patches around the ball.) Dry patches, lubed patches, Wonder Wads & hornet nest paper are used. Thin patches and big balls usually are more accurate than the opposite combination, but patch burn-through is a problem, so the patch on the powder protects the patch on the ball. As usual with round balls, a little experimenting may be necessary.

  BTW, this is the best time of year for collecting hornet nest paper. <!--emo&:)--><img src="http://beartoothbullets.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif" border="0" valign="absmiddle" alt=':)'><!--endemo-->

Bye
Jack
 

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The wasp nest material was used for high powder loads or to make up for a poor patch setup....Anybody using the extra patching under the ball is really setting up a mess, it expands your area behind the ball, could make for an inconsistant pressure on the load...

As for better accuracy I would like to hear why they think it works for them?...I would prefer a tight ball and patch with consistant pressure for repeatable accuracy...

Always check and read your patches while shooting to see if anything is changing with your combination...
 

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HV,

I do this, but onlf for a specific purpose.  So far as I have been able to tell, with a properly fitting ball/patch there is no difference in accuracy.  My purpose is while hunting, the folded patch is put down dry and serves as a barrier so the powder does not absorb the lubricant from the patch.  Again, so far as I can tell, it doesn't hurt anything, but it gives me more confidence in the consistency of the load where the rifle could be left loaded for several days.



(Edited by Alk8944 at 3:51 pm on Jan. 27, 2002)
 

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Well, I use a heavy lubed patch behind my patched ball and yes, it's more consistant in pressure and accuracy, very much more. Heres why I use this,

I built this Hawkin Fullstock 58cal Rocklock with a 38" barrel for elk hunting so my load was 160 grains of powder( 20gr 3F then 140gr By Volume pyrodex ) if you use only one patch around the ball with this load gas cutting and burning occures and you can't hit the broad side of the proverbial barn.

If you drop to a lower charge 100gr you can go back to a patched round ball with good accuracy.

Many years ago I was a frequent visitor to the NMLRA matchs in Friendship IN, and I have seen many matches won with this technic.

Also anytime you use a patch while hunting put a lubed patch in the freezer and see how it takes cold temps and please use a good lube that will not let your patch burn and smolder after the shot several times on the range I have seen patches smoldering, were I hunted in Colorado sometimes it was so dry it would'nt take much to cause a problem  ..................................................marko
 

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Like Alk8944, I too use a wad [ Bore Buttons] between the ball/patch, and powder to protect the powder from the lube. I find a little better groups when I use the buttons. I use a home made lube made from bees wax and olive oil, or moose milk and do not want it contaminating the powder. I have tried a lot of combinations and this is what works for me.
 

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The bore buttons made of felt have a good consistency in the load column, compressability is very little and I have seen them used for both bullet and ball with good success...

As with the thoughts about protecting the powder charge, I found several years back that I was using entirely too much lube and the amount of lube required  was really surprising...So I did some experimenting...My bore butter would leave a build up in the barrel after several shots and complicate the fouling when shooting long strings of shots...I cured this by melting some in a double boiler and then adding it to some patch material in a plastic bag, making sure that it covered completely...then I take and heat the patching up in a small over or microwave (Low Temperatures) and then pat it as dry as I could get it...It feels realitively dry until you apply pressure between your fingers...This is the same process that happens whenthe projectile is shot out of the barrel the lube comes out under presuure, just like wringing a rag out...

I have left my rifle loaded like this for as high as 4 days with no problems...The more, what I call Greasy Kids stuff you use the more fouling problems you have...Recently I have shot up to 70 times without cleaning with no problems, this is due to changing my lubes around and not using as much...

Cutting in the bore with large charges is really relative to bore condition and tightness of the gas seal, patch and ball combination...One of my 62 Cal Bullet rifles, I use 120 2F to drive a 900 grain bullet at about 1300 FPS...In my 58 Flinter the sweet load is between 100 and 140 grains of powder, due to the 1-72" twist, and unfortunately as the bore increases and twist slows down, charges go up accordingly to stabilize the ball or projectile

Well I end it there, sorry for being so long winded, Thanks for reading my thoughts and opinions...

Hilljack
 

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Hi, Guys:
   What do you rockstarter shooters use for lube? I'm almost out of Young Country 103.  My T/C Hawken flinter's barrel was almost plugged with bore butter when I bought it and I'd prefer a lube that doesn't condition the bore.

Bye
Jack
 

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What you are saying about cutting in the bore is true enough but 30 or so years ago a good patch lube that would withstand my 160 gr load was few and far between. Youngs 103 was as close to it back then as anything and sometimes the hot gases would still cut the patch real bad. Now it was an easy fix to ram a lubed patch on the powder first, also keep in mind that I never had a patch that was around the ball that was cut by rifling with double patches.
I think the hot gases really worked on them patches going down the Bore.
I always picked up my spent patches and reused the good ones ( relubed ) on top the powder.

What I do miss is Buffalo Bullets once upon a time made a .562 ball that I liked.....Marko
 

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If you are going to be shooting for the day Like at the range or if there are going to be a bunch of targets, as in varmints or squirrels I use a lighter lube (Lehigh Valley or Ol Griz), if I'm hunting deer or other critters where it could be loaded for a day or two I use the method described above...

You can use Moose Milk, which is water soluble oil in a 6 to 1 solution, you can apply it a drop at a time or dunk your patching material in and let dry, it feels wet but it is not...Murphy's Oil Soap and alcohol is another good product, it is also a great cleaner at the end of the day  (Cheap Too)...Take 1 quart of Murphy's Oil Soap, 1 quart of Isopropl Alcohol and mix it in with 2 quarts of distilled water...Remember don't soak your patches until they are dripping, only a few drops are needed, whether you cut at the muzzle or use pre cuts... and if you are going to swab your barrel only use moistened patches...

If you stick with this routine you will notice that after about 75 to 100 shots your problems with fouling will decrease big time...

Thanks for reading  thoughts and opinions

Hilljack
 

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There is a bunch of truth in what your saying...The English were the masters of Large Bore/Large Charges...I'll venture to guess your twist in that rifle was between 1-48" and 1-66" and if that is true then you could have had problems with stripping, but here again thats only my guess...

Forsythe rifling is the BIG BOY of Muzzleloading and it usually starts out at 1-72" and goes to 1-144" and they really need a push to get going...

Believe me I'm not arguing with you, because your doing all the right stuff, just trying to share what I've experienced...And I need to learn more...

Thanks for reading my thoughts and opinions...

Hilljack
 

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Hi, Starrbow & Hilljack:
     Thanks for the advice, although I'm not sure that 1:6 alcohol:water is strong enough anti-freeze for today's -10°F  <!--emo&:D--><img src="http://beartoothbullets.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif" border="0" valign="absmiddle" alt=':D'><!--endemo-->

Bye
Jack
 

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I have recently started using extra virgin olive oil for patch lube as well as for
protecting the bore, and  lubricating the lock.

I seem to have less fouling than before, and the gun cleans easier than when I used various "bore butter" concotions, or even mutton tallow. And NO build up in the bore.

The only problem is that I have been told that olive oil will become gummy if left in the bore a  long time, so I guess I will just have to shoot more often. Breaks my heart. ;-)

J.D.
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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This is fascinating... would you guys write up your various loading procedures so we can put them in a black powder tech note?  Doesn't have to be anything fancy, just step-by-step and your observations.  I'd transcribe this myself but not understanding all of it, afraid I'd make a mistake and screw it up.
 

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MikeG, I think that is a good idea. New BP shooters could get some help without asking. Add the care and cleaning to that, and you really have something. I had very little help at first so I picked up a book by Sam Fadala, and that helped through the learning period. I found it very intimidating at first, and almost never bothered. It's not that tough, and if someone who is a good writer could convey that to people looking in, they might take up this very enjoyable sport.
 

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Sure I'd be glad to, besides I already have a couple of mini articles form different posts...If you guys are interested...

Hilljack
 

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Here is one of the write-ups I have done...More of an opinion than anything...Check it out and see what you tink and let me know if you would like to see more...

Hilljack
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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Great stuff!  That's what we're looking for, solid practical experience.  As you note it might not work the same for everyone, but it worked for you and so it's good information.

I'll let Marshall know about this document.
 
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