about smokless....and c@b's


August 25, 2008, 09:03 PM
i have looked through the reloading manuals and found the loads for 45 colt..... which is what the conversion cylinders shoot right?for a 44 rem anyhow. the pressure looked relatively low, about 7-10000 cup and arnt bp's proofed for 10000 cup? so why couldnt you load, as an example, 7 grains of unique into the cylinder and still be safe? i love the gun much but the cleaning is not at all convienent on school nights. well i went ahead and ordered 2 spare cylinders so i decider to try a few things with the cylinder the revolver came with. first, aside from many warnings i bealived that if the gun could handel a full cylinder of 777 why not half a load of unique for a 45 colt? well it was a extreemly inconsistant detonation. some would pop, others would BOOM. but it all seemed the same as far as unreliable ignition... btw i could only get with magnum #11 caps. and there was much unburnt powder. so i am done with attempting smokless loads...(my measure was a 22mag case which was just under half a colt load, by weight) but i was wondering why the ignition was so unreliable? next i will put a slight bevel on the cylinder mouth to squeeze the bullet in , that way i will not have lead rings clogging the core pin and action. one last question......do any manufactures still make a conical hollow point bullet that would fit under the loading ram of an 1858 remington if not do any of you have a reliable method of making hollowpoints from cast -lee 200 grain conicals-?:confused:

If you enjoyed reading about "about smokless....and c@b's" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
August 25, 2008, 09:09 PM
I have shot over 50 rounds in my Pietta 1860 Army with a Kirst cylinder. The load was a 250 grain round nose flat point oregon trail laser over 7 grains of unique. Shoots fine.

August 25, 2008, 09:14 PM
your messing with a lot of things that can get you into some trouble. If you really want to shoot cartridge guns. Then you should buy a cartridge gun. If you like shooting black powder and are used to shooting black powder then you will appreciate using black powder. then in that case you should purchase a conversion cylinder. Then if anything else if your worried about time then you wait until you have more time. But please you need to follow advice given. As for why the unburnt powder and the poofs. Its a completely different type of ignition. even using half the load. The flash will go straight in the nipple if it doesnt go far is not hot enough and does not touch powder then it would not ignite. Thats where filler loads come into play to keep the powder back to ignite easilier. However im done with this thread. you shouldnt be messing around with things that people tell you not too

August 25, 2008, 09:49 PM
The pressure curve of smokeless will rapidly deform the mild steel used in bp implementations.

August 25, 2008, 09:54 PM
Scrat gave you good advice! You are going to destroy a gun and maybe hurt yourself and others. If you want smokeless - buy a cartridge gun. Save yourself some money and grief.

Old Fuff
August 25, 2008, 10:20 PM
I also agree with scrat. It says "Black Powder Only" on the barrel for a good reason. :uhoh:

If these revolvers could be used with smokeless powder they would be proofed with smokeless, and reloading books would have data explaining what kind of powder to use, and how much of it. The lack of such should give you a big hint about what not too do.

August 25, 2008, 10:56 PM
thanks for the info....the recoil was too, stiff, i guess id call it, at least to me, i have never actually shot a smokeless pistol before but i would suppose that is a major difference too as far as recoil goes. im done with messin around an jus gonna have safe fun the way it was designed to be had. and again thanks for the info....but why are conversion cylinders so much more expensive than regular cylinders, i dont think the steel and machining is worth $200 more than a standard cylinder... is it?

August 25, 2008, 11:11 PM
it is. For one they use arsonal grade steel. So its a lot different from trying to make one yourself. Or getting several cylinders and taken them to your buddys machine shop. The grade of steel is way stronger. Then your looking at a custom cylinder versus a normal cylinder. Now the cylinders that are on bp revolvers are also strong. they are too made of hardened steel which is way better than the steel that these were originally designed for. but its still different. The whole gun is not made out of arsonal grade steel. Take a Taurus raging bull. Compared to your black powder gun there is a huge difference. huge. To shoot a load that a .44 magnum could shoot would be suicide. even shooting a revolver with 45 colt. The 45 colt is nothing. As the load is 35 grains of black witha . 452 bullet. We all know 35 grains of black is a good load but its not way aggressive. But thats black powder. Smokeless powder is a whole different ballpark. When loading 45 colt. you pour in the powder then seat the bullet to the powder so there is no air gap. This makes for a good round. With smokeless you only need avg about 6 grains for a 45 colt depending on what powder. One of the biggest mistakes made when smokeless powder came out. People would fill the cases with smokeless and seat the bullet to the powder. when fired this would creat hand grenades. You can treat smokeless and black powder the same. even when shooting 45 colt out of a conversion cylinder you must use very light loads. When purchasing ammo you must purchase cowboy type of ammo if not using black powder. This is not to have a fatality. Its that serious. You have not shot a cartridge handgun. Go to your local indoor range and rent a 44magnum with box of shells revolver of course with a 3 inch barrel. then come back here and tell us the difference. I tell you what that 44 probably only has about 6 grains of powder in it.

August 26, 2008, 02:52 AM
i love the gun much but the cleaning is not at all convienent on school nights.

Have you tried 777 or American Pioneer Powder (APP)? Under normal circumstances, these non-corrosive powders should allow you at least 1-3 days before cleaning is absolutely necessary if not longer. There were posts to that effect where someone tested not cleaning his gun for weeks after using similar non-corrosive sub. powders. I wouldn't recommend that long in a humid climate, but using them would certainly allow the delay of cleaning for the short term anyway [at your own risk of course! ;)].

but i was wondering why the ignition was so unreliable?

Even the new Blackhorn 209 powder, which was specifically developed for inlines utilizing 209 primers and is said to be a super clean substitute powder and akin to smokeless, won't ignite reliably if at all unless using the more potent 209 primer.
The Savage inline rifle which is capable of shooting smokeless powder also requires a 209 shotgun primer.
Each type of primer produces a measurable amount of hot gases which ignite the powder. If the volume and temperature of the hot gas isn't great enough, then the smokeless powder won't ignite reliably.

This is copied and pasted from another website posting:

On page 83 of DaveEhrig's book "Muzzleloading for Deer & Turkey", he lists some information on percussion caps and primers.

#11 standard cap - 6.53 cc of gas at 3,024 degrees F when fired.

#11 magnum cap - 7.59 cc of gas at 3,717 degrees F when fired.

U.S. #2 musket cap - 14.36 cc of gas at 3,717 degrees F when fired.

#209 shotgun primer - 21.98 cc of gas at 3,024 degrees F when fired.

#200 rifle primer - 11.68 cc of gas at 3,024 degrees F when fired.

And Toby Bridges came up with another method to measure the relative strength of different brands of 209 primers by shooting a patched .32 ball out of an inline without any powder at all, and he then chronographed the average velocity of 5 shots of each. It illustrates that even 209 primers are not all the same:

Winchester 209ML ........................221 f.p.s.
Winchester 209 Triple Seven ML.....244 f.p.s.
Remington 209 Kleanbore ML ........318 f.p.s.
Std. Winchester No. 209A ..............336 f.p.s.
Std. Remington No. 209 .................341 f.p.s.
Cheddite No. 209 ...........................347 f.p.s.
Federal No. 209A ...........................381 f.p.s.

And for comparison, we also ran the Precision Rifle "Vari-Flame" through this test, using both Winchester "Small Pistol" and "Small Rifle" primers.

Winchester WSP "Small Pistol" ........116 f.p.s.
Winchester WSR "Small Rifle" .........143 f.p.s.


August 26, 2008, 03:33 AM
What if someone is using a stainless ruger black powder revolver with a conversion cylinder? do they still need to be so careful? Those rugers look pretty strong to me.

August 26, 2008, 05:36 AM
I personally like Black Powder weapons for what they are & what they are capable of "within reason" but Smokeless in even todays C&B revolvers without using one of the available conversion cylinders is sucide!

Scrat is right 100%, I've personally seen what can happen to a C&B revolver when a little smokeless is used in them "from a wall hanger that was on display in a Gunsmith Friends shop" & let me tell you it ain't pretty "from what I understand no one got seriously hurt from it but hospitalization was in order for the shooter."

Not the only reason but part of the equasion for the reliability & safety of Cartridge firearms using smokless is because in part the cartridge, the brass also helps absorb some of the pressure generated by the round & then transferred to the cylinder or chamber of the weapon, with the exception of the Savage rifle that is a Smokeless capable Muzzleloading rifle all muzzleloader should use black powder &/or an approved substitute "conversion cylinders being the exception but within a resonable ammount."

I'm rambling on at this time so I'll close with this..

Boy You Are Lucky That All You Had Was Some Inconsistent Ignition!
I would not trust that cylinder for nothing more than light loads from this time forward because you could have weakened it's integrity.

August 26, 2008, 08:42 AM
I shot a bunch of revolvers and pistols with Goex Pinacle (sc) and cleaned them like modern guns. Never got any rust. The down side was that Pinacle was erratic in everything but heavy charges in a dragoon. Still, it would probably be more consistent than any smokeless load with the added benfit of not grenading the revolver.

Somebody in france worked up a percussion revolver designed to shoot 38 wadcutters over a charge of smokeless powder. His accuracy and velocity spread were far inferior to the expectation with traditional loads.

Jamie C.
August 26, 2008, 09:27 AM
aside from many warnings i bealived that if the gun could handel a full cylinder of 777 why not half a load of unique for a 45 colt?

And youngsters wonder why they aren't allowed to do certain things, or own certain things... *shakes head*

Black powder - and the substitutes that are intended to mimic it - are entirely different animals than smokeless powders. They have different burn rates, and different pressure curves.

And then there's the difference in volume between a cartridge case and the bare chamber of a BP gun.

Ever hear the term "Detonation"? Seems some light-loaded big-bore cartridge guns have blown up, over the years, with what should have been safe little "mouse" loads. Some folks claim that the reason for this is that the small amount of powder spread out too much in the mostly-empty case and ignited all at once, rather than burn in a controlled fashion, and create an intense pressure spike.

Is there any truth to it? I don't know. I'm certainly not gonna risk finding out by using half a .45 Colt load in a big ol' empty BP chamber though.

Here's a little bit of free advice that might actually help you get to be an old man, if you follow it:

Whenever you see a warning on anything, advising you not to take a particular action... pay attention to it and don't do whatever it's telling you not to do.

Because strange as it may seem to you, it's highly likely that the person or persons that put that warning there probably know a great deal more about it than you do.


August 26, 2008, 10:09 AM
A black powder 45 case loaded with 34grs of black and a 255 gr bullet on top is by no means a tame pussy cat load ...anyone that thinks they are just hasn`t shot any ....The Army reduced it 45 loads down to 25 and 30 grs of powder and used fillers for the air space for a reason ...the guys didn`t like to pratice because of the heavy recoil ....If you have never shot any I suggest you buy a conversion cylinder and give them a try ....you won`t see the need for a bigger better hand gun ...It`s very impressive .

August 26, 2008, 10:20 AM
smokless and BP guns do not mix.

Marlin 45 carbine
August 26, 2008, 11:11 AM
stick with BP or a sub with that '58 - otherwise you are asking for trouble.
I have used Pyrodex 'P' in my ROA and '58 with good results when shooting a firmly compressed load. but the real deal BP is cheaper and cleans up easier. a stiff charge of powder in the C&B revolvers has some power, believe me.

August 26, 2008, 12:11 PM
(Pardon the thread drift)

A black powder 45 case loaded with 34grs of black and a 255 gr bullet on top is by no means a tame pussy cat load ...anyone that thinks they are just hasn`t shot any ....The Army reduced it 45 loads down to 25 and 30 grs of powder and used fillers for the air space for a reason ...the guys didn`t like to pratice because of the heavy recoil ....If you have never shot any I suggest you buy a conversion cylinder and give them a try ....you won`t see the need for a bigger better hand gun ...It`s very impressive .

sundance44s, while I agree with the sentiment regarding the 45 LC black powder ballistics, I cringe every time I hear of somebody buying such a conversion for their colt clone. The design of the gun was not made to handle such power.

The 1872 was offered in 44 Colt for a reason. It duplicated the power of the 44 C&B.

The 45 LC is in a class by itself and needs the extra engineering of the Model P to safely get the full benefit of the cartridge.

Just my thoughts.

As for the OP idea, do not do it. Guns are easy to rebuild. Hands are not, and no where near as good after the rebuild.

August 26, 2008, 12:32 PM
StrawHat ...you have a good point ..I`ve switched my 45 colt loading down to useing the 45 Schofield brass ..it`s shorter so you only need 26 grs of black powder for a full case loading ...it`s much easyer on the guns . I`ve never used a conversion cylinder in an opentop Colt for the reason you wrote ...I might would use the Schofield loads in one ..they would be much more friendly to the guns design . It takes alot of time to load down the 45 Colt useing fillers . I grew tired of that idea real quick , and the Schofield brass works well in all my pistols and rifle chambered for the 45 LC...it would be closer to the original 44 centerfire cartridges back in the day ..in bullet weight and powder charge .
In my younger years I thought the 45 ACP 1911 was the power house pistol ...compairing the 2 ...I`ll take the 45LC single action over the 45ACP .

August 26, 2008, 06:54 PM
45 Schofield loads. You know what that sounds like a really good idea. 26 grains i like it. Darn you sundance now i have to buy some brass.

August 26, 2008, 07:01 PM

21.99 for 100 ayyy i guess im getting them.

August 26, 2008, 09:23 PM
Ok for one i was not aware each conversion cylinder was individually machined and therefore i believed costs could be cut through mass production machines. since these designs have been around about 130 years or so. also i was very careful about loading the smokeless- completely seating bullet on powder... i had no intention of machining out my other cylinders, just keeping two extra cylinders is enough extra loads that i wouldn't need a cartridge pistol. the 44 Remington mag shoots 8.9-12.1 grains of unique under a 245 grain bullet. also later that evening i realized that conversions are made from entirely different blocks b/c they are only 5 shot.... so you would be making cylinder walls way too thin in a sixgun. i was aware that brass cases would add strength to the chamber and later assumed that it would also aid in absorbing the shock of nitro as opposed to b p's "push". i normally shoot 25-32 grains 777 for target so i believe this cylinder will be ok w/small loads still....nothing over 30 anymore though. i have started loading paper cartridges too and use 27g 777 ,13g corn starch filler and a 200g lee conical which will be safe too. the last 7-8 years iv'e learned much about these guns and am glad to have found this site of many well informed shooters and reloader, btw i was wondering how many yrs gun and shooting experience scrat has . seems pretty damn smart to me lol. has anyone found a bullet better than the lee 200g or rb in the1858 far as accuracy goes? using bp of course. an im gonna try an find a range round' here but im deep in the stix and know of none locally.... especially for a 44 mag. btw we moved to the stix... i didn grow up here:D

August 26, 2008, 09:53 PM
Well i have been shooting for about 30+ years now. Reloading for im not too sure seems like a long time. Casting. Wow i thought about it a year ago. I believe i have probably casted over 100,000 bullets. That was a year ago when i figured this out. How many lbs of lead. OMG who knows. Made black powder. Yep been there done that. Experimented with different types been there done that. Worst black powder. ( well i can tell you that sugar does not work as a substitute for Sulfur). It burns but leaves a white substance behind. Other than that. i have read so much on shooting, loading, black powder shooting, loading. Then im on here every day talking and writing to these bums. ( i think i call Freinds). along with this forum i am on a whole bunch of other ones. One thing i can tell you. Is you can never get enough knowledge. Same time i can tell you is that a lot of things you want to try and experiment on. Some one has already done it. We have all thought of shooting with smokeless, we have all tried to change the curve, use the magic bullet try a different load. These guns have been around for about 140 years. So what you think is a good idea or a new idea. Chances are its not. Best thing you can do is always ask questions. always read what others write. You can learn alot from other peoples mistakes. Im not the best shooter around. Im not the most knowledgeable. However when i take an interest in something i tend to try to find out everything there is to know about what im doing. From the history, to who used them to how they were used. Everything. Some of these guys know a lot too. Gary for one. He has not posted any bed time stories. When he does though it means for some good reading. The guy knows a lot about civil war history.

Any how when you have the time. Welcome To THR. Now go pour youself a cup of coffee and sit back and relax.

August 26, 2008, 09:55 PM
I personally think you should go out and buy a lottery ticket considering how lucky you are that that pistol didn't shatter in your hands. Even if you survived the encounter I would always be skeptical about the integrity of that gun and would approach firing it with a lot of caution (I would probably bury it somewhere that nobody would ever find it). Anyway I'm glad you survived the encounter and hope you learned something from the experience.

August 26, 2008, 09:59 PM
If it was a brass framed colt he should check to see if it has any stretch marks around the arbor shaft. Even if its steel. Its probably a good idea to check. Someone posted a good picture on impact on the base of colt revolvers. Dont remember who. I think it was a bras frame gun but at the base it had some big imprints of heavy loads.

August 26, 2008, 10:34 PM
i had checked the frame n cylinder.... even checked the gap b4 an after to make sure all was good. as far as makin bp....done that too, but cause of the lower density you need more which is convent since you can simply fill the chamber for a compressed load of about 27 grains... and this doesn't require a measure either. i know so many people have tried new things that it seems there is a written document on almost everything... but if its not extremely hazardous(unlike my experiment which was stupid but i knew i woundn stop thinking about it till i tried... btw i only wanted a very light load for a possum or occasional crow at very close range but accuracy was too bad due to inconsistent ignition by use of caps instead of primers inside metallic case pockets) why not give it a shot and if you later find a document on it ... compare and share your new results.

August 27, 2008, 11:28 PM
Thats what my conversion cylinder is for. i take 6 45colts put them in and they shoot.

August 28, 2008, 10:32 AM
do you think a conversion cylinder with cowboy low pressure smokeless loads...or a ruger single six .22 would be a better choice far as taking care of the occasional late night pest? bout the same price( i saw a used pair of ruger single six's for 300)

August 28, 2008, 10:49 AM
Most cowboy loads are at or below black powder loads. they are the only loads that are safe enough to shoot in a bp revolver. If you load correctly another powder that CAN be used Safely in a bp revolver is Trail Boss. Trail boss is a smokeless powder that is designed to fill the cases a little more than a standard powder. 6 grains of trailboss fills the case of a 45 a lot more than say unique. Same time the recoil is very very mild. Trail boss is an excellent powder to use on older guns. In smokeless powder rifles and guns i use it a lot. In fact one of my favorite guns is my Winchester 30-30. My son now 9 has been shooting it since he was 7. However for him i load up 7 grains of trail boss behind a 150 grain bullet. the recoil is very mild. However it gets the bullet on target. REad the reviews on trail boss. Its very good powder. Most cowboy ammo. Like that sold by Black hills uses a similar powder. Only other option would be to use black powder itself. Making black powder rounds is so easy. But then loading in general is easy as long as your willing to do what it takes and have patience.

August 28, 2008, 11:00 AM
When I feel like haveing a smokeless day at the range ...thats the powder I use ( Trailboss ) I`ve found it even milder through my crono ..than the data they have posted ...all my loads have been very consistant ..never a problem with it ..easy on the six shooters too .

August 28, 2008, 05:56 PM
I truely love that powder. i mean i have a bunch of powders. but trail boss is the only powder that will help fill up the case give you a light load, easy on the gun and has great accuracy. I loaded up some 45 colt with some trail boss. I just want to compare it to Goex. If its lighter on the recoil i will mess with that for a while until my 45 schofield brass comes in.

August 29, 2008, 07:13 AM
Scrat ..did ya order the Schofield die set ? I tryed to reload mine useing the 45 Colt dies ...It didn`t work for me ...I`ve heard others say they can ..I just couldn`t get that much adjustment out of my Lee dies .
Your gonna like the little Schofield rounds . Real easy shootin.

August 29, 2008, 10:40 AM
sundance44s, while I agree with the sentiment regarding the 45 LC black powder ballistics, I cringe every time I hear of somebody buying such a conversion for their colt clone. The design of the gun was not made to handle such power.

The 1872 was offered in 44 Colt for a reason. It duplicated the power of the 44 C&B.

The 45 LC is in a class by itself and needs the extra engineering of the Model P to safely get the full benefit of the cartridge.

Just my thoughts.

As for the OP idea, do not do it. Guns are easy to rebuild. Hands are not, and no where near as good after the rebuild.

I disagree slightly. The Colt Walker was an open top design like the other Colts and was more powerful than the .45 long colt blackpowder cartridge. The guns can take that level of power just fine.

Nonetheless, there's no way I'd load any of these guns with smokeless powder as the OP wants to, except as very light cowboy type loads in the cartridge conversion cylinders. Blackpowder is more fun anyways and powerful enough so why bother. Just use some triple 7 powder to delay cleaning.

August 29, 2008, 11:01 AM
AntiqueCollector.... i said i was done attempting smokeless loads! i do use 777 now, but had been using pyrodex since pyro was 17$ an 777 is 26$, and my next thing to get is the 3 lb tumbler from harbor freight to make my own bp @ about 4.75$ a lb.... after the tumbler pays for it self anyhow. my little bros rock tumbler is not that efficient.... although i was using 200 and 250 grain conicals lol. now i got my order in from cabalas though im ready to roll!! have 2 spare cylinders.... 454 rb double cavity mold(that i have already cast 150 rb out of!) double spare cylinder pouch.... double stack four pistol gun case, (which is only good for 1, maybe 2 1858 rems and all shooting supplies for approx 125-150 rounds) and today about 300 wads should get here( 5$ /100 not bad?) so i have a shot pouch too for shot loads. AND NOT A BIT OF SMOKELESS AT ALL IN THE WHOLE SETUP lol. so there.

August 29, 2008, 11:08 AM
I used some Pyrodex 30gr. pellets for .44 revolvers with a corn meal filler /w felt wad under HDY round ball .454 dia in my 1858.dirty& red rust by 2nd day.Sprayed gun with window cleaner wiped off with rag wet with WD 40.Weather was rain every evening.Used same in my ROA w/457 HDY round ball gun very dirty but no rust.Stainless steel. 1858 stainless Pietta 12 inch rusted as bad as blue steel gun.I don't like Pyrodex pellets I had a .36 1858 and used America Pioneer 2F because thats the only thing not in pellet form that my Father in law had. Worked well with 23grs. with corn flower filler &.375 dia HDY ball low vel;but good plinking load.I was visiting upstate NY so I didn't want to carry caps and powder with me from Florida.Travel thru the Peoples republics of Maryland & New York didn't nrrd any trouble.

August 29, 2008, 11:50 AM
1858rem, don't worry, I wasn't pouncing you on that really, just making my point that I think the Colt designs can handle .45 colt blackpowder loads just fine, just not heavy smokeless loads. :)

August 29, 2008, 11:53 AM
dmb3006if your gettin rust like that, after you clean it DRY IT VERY WELL so no water spots are on it. also, don't oil ti yet.... but you can put it in the oven at about 250 until it dries off everywhere (take the grips off first), then oil it and being so warm it will soak the oil up nicely... and preventing rust. btw i don't know how well wd 40 works, i have used hoppes and rem oil, but wd 40 probably makes you gun smell pretty good lol:D

August 29, 2008, 12:39 PM
cool AntiqueCollector ya i suppose its my fault anyhow an ought to expect to be criticized for even attempting smokeless in the first place lol. btw whats a OP?

August 29, 2008, 12:54 PM
Damn you sundance your right. i guess i can try the 45 colt dies. i did order the brass. but yep may have to order a new set

August 29, 2008, 02:39 PM
Yep I ordered 500 pieces of Schofield brass from Midway ...thinking I could make do with my 45 Colt die set ...Didn`t work for me ..maybe dies other than Lee will work ...Hey one thing I do like about the Lee Schofield die set ...you won`t need a crimp die ....The seating die does the neck crimp too ..and it does a good job .

August 29, 2008, 03:05 PM
mmm nice to know. here is a link i posted as i could only find midway who had them at first.


August 29, 2008, 04:16 PM
Seems like I paid 95 bucks at Midway for 500 pieces of Starline Schofield brass ...I bought the Lee Schofield Die set from Midway after the fact ..don`t remember the price ..but it was the best price I could come up with on the Lee die set .....Heck I was all set to load some up ..Then my Colt dies wouldn`t adjust for the Schofield ...ruined my day ...I`ve been stuffing my Schofields with 26 grs of 2F 777 topped off with 250 gr molly lubed bullets ...still a little stout ...I`m going to try some 200 gr bullets next time I load ....Might lighten the recoil some what ...( Wayne ) Rifle says he uses 230 gr bullets ...I can`t find any around here ..may have to order some ...

August 29, 2008, 06:24 PM
what kinda velocity you get w/26 grains ff 777 and a 250? i gotta 250 REAL mold that i thought bout shootin some boolits through my 58' with but they hard to start an i wanted to know some numbers to see if that was worth tryin, energy/velocity wise.

August 29, 2008, 06:29 PM
I see red flags all over the place - someone who uses smokeless powder when it's written all over the gun in 5 different languages not to, someone who wants to shoot two roundballs out of a single gun, now he wants to make his own powder?
1858rem - start paying attention and just be careful. I don't make my own powder, but from what I've read you have to follow directions pretty well.

August 29, 2008, 06:39 PM
ouch. ya some of these guys take shooting black powder very very serious. But people like pohill are what makes this forum what it is.

August 29, 2008, 10:34 PM
i guess i kinda seem a baron of bad ideas lol... the only thing that was actually dangerous ive done was the smokeless in a cb. i have made powder for a long time... at first for rockets.. then when i got my 58 i wanted a better method for good clean powder that would also work in my flinchlock to make it more of a flintlock(cant stand a 3 sec lock time w/pyro!!!!) but i gave up on that for a while before i had job and ran out of money for equipment. now i got the money im gonna do it right, but if i can get a mill at harbor freight, why get it at united nuclear for an extra fifty dollars? im really careful no matter how stupid what i say might seem. far as the 2 rb goes... i asked for help, didn get an answer i needed so i just tried it, i was using a sub but not nearly as stupid as smokeless. i started at ten g w lub pill an 2 rb. worked fine. worked up in 2 g increments till i got to 27 lube pill an 2 rb. no more kick than a single rb with the same load for some odd reason. they did have different poa's though. the pair hit about 3.5 in high an at 15 yd were no more than .5 in center to center apart..... of three shots(total of six holes) was about 4 in group.... single ball was only 1 in(this was off a rest) and the single ball was about 1 in low. btw the reason i was so impatient was 1 im fairly impatient and 2 will be working 6 days in a row every week from now on and Friday is my only day off, and on work days i don't get done till ten... i don't have time in the mornin either cause i go to school from 8 in the mornin till time to go to work. so i don't have much time anymore, till thanksgiving break anyhow:cool:

August 29, 2008, 10:37 PM
least in my opinion is was not dangerous, of course i also know the exact circumstances i was under so knowing this i can have a totally different opinion than anybody else.....well as my granpop used to say "opinions are like asses, everybody has one" pop was a funny old fart lol

August 29, 2008, 10:43 PM
I cant remember when. But the subject did come up once before. on two round balls in a cylinder. we were talking about it from a civil war point that this was done often by mistake. Same time i believe there were a few people that have done it. But quickly figured out it was not worth it. Now ideally by theory if you have two round balls coming out of the same chamber same barrel at the same time from the same charge. They should go through the same hole. However that was not the case. It was inconsistant. To the point that differenty chambers in the cylinders would give different results. Same time every throw of the hammer would put the balls 1/4 of an inch apart or even more. i researched this once. it seems the problem is the back bullet is getting the pressure and the bang from the charge the ball in front is being pushed by the back ball. Since it was not under pressure as the back one. it is sort of pushed out of the way. the only way to avoid this and to have both balls act as one would be to use some type of filler in between both balls as they would have to be very very tightly pushed agaisnt each other. you would almost have to use a conical flat faced kinda like a barrel with no round ends on each side otherwise the rear ball is pushing the front. Instead of both getting the benefits of the charge. This is why its a no go. So ya its already been tried and it doesnt work. All your doing is waisting lead. Again we are back to the load it per the manual and shoot for accuracy.

August 29, 2008, 11:04 PM
ya i figure its a waste.. least i know where to aim for conicals an where to aim for rb... but these are in and all around,,, just waistin lead. accuracy is top

August 29, 2008, 11:17 PM
1858rem - I hope you're looking at an engineering major in college because you seem to have a passion for ballistics, at least. Just don't blow yourself up (or anyone else for that matter) before you take the SATs.
Just some advice from an old coot.

August 29, 2008, 11:19 PM
hahahahah ya if he keeps going he may get there. just ask questions before you go out doing things

August 29, 2008, 11:28 PM
does it really seem that way? i have been told that so many times its not even funny anymore. i truly amaze most anybody i meet with what i know and do.

August 29, 2008, 11:33 PM
you know whats crazy is most of us are the same way thats what make us who we are. Get a bunch of black powder relics together they are all very good with their toys and have all sorts of ideas and have tried just about anything you can think of. Thats what makes bp shooters different. Bp shooters and reloader have a lot in common. Its really easy to get someone who reloads ammo and turn them onto black powder. For people that have never reloaded and are cautious about it. You would never see them shooting black powder.

4v50 Gary
August 29, 2008, 11:43 PM
1858rem - I'm with pohill on your course of study. I hope you're in engineering and take some metallurgy. You'll learn the tensile strength of them and if you can combine that with industrial applications, it can take you places. Some chemistry would also be useful to you. No one wants to see another enthusiast hurt. It also hurts the hobby when legislators call for more legislations to curb our activities.

There's a lot of very knowledgeable guys on this board and you would do well to heed their advice. It was paid for by experience and I stand in awe of their wisdom.

August 30, 2008, 12:30 AM
btw whats a OP?

"original post" :)

August 30, 2008, 01:47 PM
Now ideally by theory if you have two round balls coming out of the same chamber same barrel at the same time from the same charge. They should go through the same hole. However that was not the case. It was inconsistant. To the point that differenty chambers in the cylinders would give different results. Same time every throw of the hammer would put the balls 1/4 of an inch apart or even more.

I believe Recoil is at work here. The second ball exits after the first but the barrel is in recoil and slightly above the position for the exit of the first ball. Depending on the shooter's grip, some horizontal displacement can be seen as well as vertical displacement of the POI. Change in POI between chambers is probably normal group dispersion.

However... YMMV :D

August 30, 2008, 02:16 PM
makes sense but it all depends on the gun and the load. When you pull the trigger. the bullet should have left the barrel theoredically before you heard it or before you even felt the recoil

August 30, 2008, 03:31 PM
Recoil begins at shotstart. While the bullet is still in the barrel, apparent recoil before bullet crowning is the effect of the force on the gun caused by mass centroid remaining constant (inertia) while mass distribution (bullet position) changes. After crowning, recoil is mainly reaction mass force (rocket effect): same principal, but now outside the barrel.

Upshot: Recoil starts when the ball starts to move. The sense of "felt" recoil happens well after shot crowning because of sensory delay. Actual effect of recoil on POI happens in the few milliseconds of barrel travel resulting in a small but significant motion of the muzzle. Felt recoil is more from external effects of reaction mass (jet). No matter how the gun is loaded or held by hand, all shot sequentially exiting the muzzle will see different impact points.

Clamp the gun in a heavy vice and the balls may well hit the same hole. 'Course, one could always stick the muzzle right on the target...;)

August 30, 2008, 06:29 PM
The fundamental problem with "catastrophic failures" in firearms -- besides the fact that they're catastrophic -- is that they typically occur without warning.

"Black Powder Only" is clearly marked on the gun. There's a reason for that, and it has to do with complex parameters like pressure spikes and ignition profiles in black powder / smokeless, metalurgy, SAAMI specs, engineering, and SAFETY.

Catastrophic failure in a firearm is usually preceded by absolutely no warning whatever that the steel is going to fail.

"BLACK POWER ONLY" -- It means what it says.

August 30, 2008, 11:53 PM
out of 12 loads of 2 rb in the same cylinder they consistently hit about 3/8-1/2 in apart....one on top of the other. i had heard that recoil actually starts after the bullet leaves the barrel, maybe thats just felt recoil cause of sensory delay like mausgun said.

4v50 Gary
August 31, 2008, 12:21 AM
Recoil begins as soon as the bullet begins moving. Remember Newton?

August 31, 2008, 12:57 AM
ya, i don't think he would ever get along with the westerns and people flying backwards from getting hit by pistol bullets lol

October 19, 2008, 01:00 AM
what about a duplex load of smokeless and bp.... and this time in a cartridge gun lol:evil:, bp to fill the case with a reduced smokeless load for cleaner burn maybe, or is this still a bad idea. i was not sure if you loaded the smokeless in first then the bp on top, would the smokeless powder burn up the bp residue as it follows behind the bp gases? :scrutiny::confused::eek:

October 19, 2008, 01:42 AM
:evil:you're on my prayer list! For real!!!


October 19, 2008, 10:33 AM
oh! i totally forgot it is very clearly stated NOT to do this lol:D

October 19, 2008, 01:31 PM
A duplex load is used by long rifle shooters, ffffg BP in a small amount and then ffg BP charge atop it...you do have a computer so I'd suggest you do some Google research.
Glad to hear from you,will be worried when I don't.

Shoot smart and safe you can go blind from doing other things too you know. :rolleyes:


October 19, 2008, 02:02 PM
smokin gun's right ,get of that track before it comes to a DEAD end

October 19, 2008, 06:27 PM
Don't use smokeless powder in a C&B revolver, period.

J.T. Gerrity
October 19, 2008, 06:34 PM
To repeat, in case you missed it: NEVER USE SMOKELESS POWDER IN A BP GUN, PERIOD!

October 19, 2008, 07:25 PM
Impressive pic. I wonder if the shooter was hurt...

October 19, 2008, 07:32 PM
look at the pitting and rust on that cylinder and around the nipples, maybe was an old original or badly taken care of? do you know if it was smokeless or bp that blew the walls out? crazy look at reality anyhow:uhoh:

October 20, 2008, 12:18 AM
1858Rem you can pack the chamber tight with a ball in each if you could set them all off and once it would hurt the cylinder a bit.
10-20 grains of Bullseye will blow a cylinder on ya. The porosities you see in that pic are what the metal is made of you trust that metal to shoot say 9 gr of unique...It's your face and hands or the person next to you.


Jamie C.
October 20, 2008, 08:03 AM
There's something else you need to be aware of, 1858Rem... stress is cumulative in steel and other metals.

What this means is that you can fire an over-charge in a pistol's chambers a given number of times and not see any damage, but later on have the gun blow up with a much lesser charge.

In other words, a person could fire off several shots of smokeless powder in a BP gun, and not see any evidence of damage, but then turn around and fire a normal BP charge and have the cylinder end up looking like the pic J.T. Gerrity posted. That person might be inclined to blame the black powder, since obviously the gun survived the smokeless powder without any harm. :rolleyes:

But the fact is, the BP only finished what the smokeless started. The problem being, it would've taken magnafluxing or something else of the like to detect those microscopic cracks and fissures that were building up in the chamber walls.

Do a Google search on "magnafluxing" and "Metal fatigue" for more information on this stuff. It might be a real eye-opener for you, on what you can really expect out of a piece of steel.

It might also tell you why some of us expect you to blow yourself up someday soon.


J.T. Gerrity
October 20, 2008, 10:02 AM
look at the pitting and rust on that cylinder and around the nipples, maybe was an old original or badly taken care of?

This happened many years ago, and the remains of this cylinder has been through many hands since then; thus the pitted and rusted condition (amazingly enough, no one bothered to keep it properly oiled...:)). This is the result of using smokeless powder in a BP cylinder (and a possible chain-fire). Fortunately no one was hurt when it let go. Never use smokeless in a BP gun of any type.

October 20, 2008, 02:43 PM
i was wondering about the way it looked like it might have chain fired, but smokeless would be even harder than smokeless to ignite, especially a chain fire, maybe it was like Jamie C. said about the bp finishing what the smokeless started? maybe a chain fire with bp did the trick after being used with smokeless? but the force of the smokeless probably just blew the whole side off i guess would be more likely. i understand the stresses are cumulative, i did this before i got a pair of spare cylinders, the one that originally came with the gun had one nipple sized from the start, i broke several nipple wrenches trying to undo it before i first fired the gun but nothing worked. also when i first got the gun, i somehow scarred the metal all the way around the cylinder between the lock stud groves, so i decided to start over with a fresh cylinder. now i still have the same gun but two brand new cylinders to use with it, i have the third put up and loaded with #4 shot and about 17g and a wad on top and bottom, just in case of a possum or something after the chickens at night lol now i have wondered about proofing guns for a long time..... wouldn't putting such a heavy load damage the gun some? i don't know exactly how it is tested but i thought it was like a 125-150% load for bp guns anyhow. and i had also read of ruger proofing with full loads of red dot.... they might be strong but wouldn't that still really be bad? and im done shooting anny smokeless in capand ball revolvers too, way bad idea on my part an i guess im pretty lucky:o, still cant spare a dollar for a lottery ticket though lol:evil:

J.T. Gerrity
October 20, 2008, 04:14 PM
:uhoh:This occured while using smokeless. The blast came so fast and was so loud that no one was really sure exactly what happened, but the general consensus was that a chain-fire did cause the extent of the damage. You've been given precautions about this; that's all we can do. One of the purposes of this (and any) forum is for education. It's up to you whether to take the advice offered or not. If you want to shoot smokeless, get a conversion cylinder, or a SAA proofed for smokeless powder. Trying to use SP in a BP gun is a sure-fired (pun intended) road to catastrophy.

Jamie C.
October 20, 2008, 05:41 PM
The blast came so fast and was so loud that no one was really sure exactly what happened, but the general consensus was that a chain-fire did cause the extent of the damage.

Just looking at the pic, and seeing how symmetrical the break is, and how the chamber walls of the middle chamber seem to be bulged outward a bit ( could be an artifact/trick of the photography ), I'd guess that the middle chamber blew/split at the sides, venting hot gas into the two adjoining chambers, and probably setting both of them off near simultaneously. From there, that one piece of metal just peeled back and broke off.

But I'm also guessing that poor cylinder has been inspected, analyzed, and postulated over for a long time now. :scrutiny:

Still, it's pretty obvious that a whole lot of pressure was at work there... And not the kind that's usually generated by BP.

October 20, 2008, 10:21 PM
i finally got the money an bought a kirst design conversion w/loading gate!:D:D cant wait for it to get here! im being safe now right, cowboy loads only too:cool:

October 23, 2008, 08:43 AM

I just want to say here that I was present once when a cylinder blew on a .38 special cartridge revolver, and old S&W Mod. 10. Absolutely no chance of a chainfire there.... WE NEVER FOUND ONE SINGLE PIECE OF THE CYLINDER!!!! We found a couple of sections of brass from the cartrige, and the top strap of the frame was bent in an arch at least 1/4" above normal. Fortunately no body got hurt, but that just goes to demonstrate the explosive force of smokeless powder. I am not sure what caused it, but I suspect the cylinder was very slightly out of time with the bore. The bottom line is that the gun was designed to use smokeless powder, it would not take much smokeless or more than one cylinder detonating to do the type of damage shown in the photo.

Just enjoy the C&P revolvers as they are intended, and have fun doing it.


October 23, 2008, 10:13 AM
Thousands of the conversion cylinders by Kirst and R&D have been sold and used safely.

October 23, 2008, 06:14 PM
A chamber slightly out of battery will not cause a cylinder to fail catastrophically; that has to be either an overloaded casing or, more likely, a casing that was incompatible with the chamber.

October 23, 2008, 08:42 PM
I agree, mykeal.

I've told quite a few friends that have older S&W J Framed .38 Spec. to limit their use of the +P .38's to maybe a box worth a year being that they ere not made for normal use with those pressures, one didn't listen & only cracked the cylinder & battered the recoil shield.

If you enjoyed reading about "about smokless....and c@b's" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!