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Joined: Aug 2013
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Boxlock
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I apologize about hijacking this thread.

I started out reloading smokeless for my newer LC Smith a few years ago. I have an older (1903 mfg. date) Ithaca Lewis with stub twist barrels, with a clean bill of health, and I've just recently started loading black for it. I'm currently using a lee adjustable shot dipper set to 7/8 oz. and crimping with a drill press roll crimper, over a nitro card, followed by a lubed fiber wad. I started out with square loads, and decided to back off on the powder because it was giving me holes in my patterns in my gun.

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There are 16 drams to an ounce so 1 dram = 27.34375 grans (for practical purposes your 27.3 is close aplenty). Industry standard for the volume of 1 dram of Black Powder is .115 CuIn. Black powder weight can, & Will, vary a bit according to garanulation (# of F'S) & by lot, depending primarily upon the charcoal use. This is really of no great concern, the volume measures are fine. Generally speaking a 1 oz shot measure will hold about 2½ (68grs) drams of black. You can multiply the wt of your shot dipper by that 2½ to get an approximate volume for the desired load of other weights. Note that this is a Volume to Volume or Equal Volume load. This has been a long standing practice for BP Shotguns & usually will give good results. This will in fact give loads very close to what was for years considered the "Field" loads for shotshells.
A "Square Load" for a shotgun is defined as one in which the column of shot in the Bore has a length equal to the bore diameter. This will in a 10 gauge give approximately a 1¼oz load & approximately 1 1/16oz in a 12 gauge. A Square load in any other gauge is virtually non-existant (Take note you 28ga fans, they don't shoot a Sq load by any defination).


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I've shot black powder in Federal papers for many years now, 2-3/4 drams and 1 ounce shot loaded over felt wads/folded crimp for targets. I load the Federals with smokeless for 3 loadings, then black powder and discard the hull afterwards. One thing that hasn't been mentioned yet is an insidious problem wherein black powder combustion fumes will find their way INSIDE the frame and will corrode the hammers, sears, springs etc. Anyone shooting black powder should chose a gun design that has limited openings into the frame (A H Fox is not one of them) and should also watch for pierced or leaky primers. In that case be sure to pull the stock shortly after shooting and douche things out. A S x S with a drawbolt stock makes that easy. Silvers


I AM SILVERS, NOT SLIVER = two different members. I'm in the northeast, the other member is in MT.
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Last question:
WHY do you want to shoot black powder in breech loading guns when you can load smokeless to the same or less pressure??


[img:left][/img]

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Cause the black powder goes "BAWHOOOM" and makes a lot of smoke!



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Yeah, as to why real blackpowder, lighting off a load of the stuff is an event unto itself. The noise, the cloud, the filth, the dogs howling in the background - it's a very engaged way of shooting.

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Another reason is Black powder will give you very close to identical ballistics whether in the Arctic or on the Equator.
A "Low Pressure" load of 7625 at low temps may leave you with a wad in the bore. Guess How I Know, it happened to me in a Duck Swamp ""ONCE"". I swore off 7625 for low pressure Forever that Day. The Factor which allows a smokeless powder to generate low pressures are inhibitors to the burn rate of the powder. These inhibitors also make it harder to ignite & they do not burn well except at higher pressures. Black Powder has a natural burn rate which is very suitable to shotguns, is easy to ignite & burns reliably & at about the same rate at virtually any pressure level. Burn rate of smokeless is very pressure sensitive. Best low pressure loads with smokeless are light loads with faster powders, which are not so heavily coated with inhibitors.


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Other than the slight annoyance that black powder tends to be filthy, loud, hot, smoky, smelly, expensive, volatile, hard to ship, it has to be the greatest stuff for shotguns in the whole world.


If we feed our faith our fears will starve, if we feed our fears our faith will starve.
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[quote=Stallones]Last question:
WHY do you want to shoot black powder in breech loading guns when you can load smokeless to the same or less pressure??


Because I want to and (so far) I still can.

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Good reasons, I shoot a lot in muzzle loaders

and enjoy all that also

Last edited by Stallones; 11/22/13 09:44 PM.
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