Loading BP cartridges


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TomADC
February 25, 2010, 03:40 PM
Mainly 45-70 right now, got almost everything together that I need but in order to set my Lyman 55 BP powder measure to throw the proper charge I thought I'd take my volume measure and set it at say 65grs then measure that out and weigh it on my digital scale. Then I can adjust the Lyman 55 to throw that same weight? Sounds like a plan doesn't it?
I could double check it by pouring that first weighed charge back into the manual volume measure.

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blackpowder bob
February 25, 2010, 05:56 PM
When loading BP cartridges, I always use a drop tube. There are probably other ways, but this is the way I have always done it.

scrat
February 25, 2010, 06:23 PM
Drop tube then same time YOU NEVER eveR EVER weigh black powder with a scale. Its needs to be loaded by volume. The powder needs to meet with the bullet. So if you weigh out a charge today then the powder settles or something you will have an air gap between the powder and bullet this could result in KABOOM. not in a good way. So do not use a scale. You should not try to mass produce ammo when loading black powder unless you can accurately make sure the powder goes all the way up to meet with the bullet. Remember black powder is compressable. Meaning you must compress the powder. so it needs to be a tad over the line where it meets the bullet.

ClemBert
February 25, 2010, 06:56 PM
I load 45 Colt with GOEX black powder. A Lee Perfect Measure, which is a volumetric measuring device, is used to measure GOEX 3Fg. I set it up to meter 35 grains by weight as verified on a beam scale. Oddly enough (or maybe not so odd) the 35 grains of GOEX by weight matches 35 grains by volume as verified in my Thomson Center Powder Measure (http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://media.midwayusa.com/ProductImages/Large/714741.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.midwayusa.com/viewproduct/%3Fproductnumber%3D714741&usg=__ZbGtriI_BJFgfIdA-F9XzOGxwYs=&h=375&w=500&sz=13&hl=en&start=1&um=1&itbs=1&tbnid=rCV0SFS-LOuhOM:&tbnh=98&tbnw=130&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dthomson%2Bcenter%2Bblack%2Bpowder%2Bmeasure%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26sa%3DN%26rlz%3D1B3GGGL_enUS341US341%26tbs%3Disch:1). Your mileage may vary depending on your choice of BP since BP can/will vary between manufacturers. There isn't a guarantee that even within the same manufacturer the BP will be the same from can to can. Black powder (and BP substitutes) is always measured by volume not weight. But, its always fun to see how much the BP weighs just for grins.

p.s. I only use a drop tube when I'm trying to cram 40 grains of GOEX in a 45 Colt cartridge. Also, I always use a compression plug in die to make room for the bullet.

TomADC
February 25, 2010, 07:19 PM
I have drop tubes & will use them but seems to me if I pour 65 grs into my volume measure, then weigh that 65 grs by volume weigh 57.7 grs on my digital scale, at least for this can shouldn't every 65 gr by volume weigh 57.7 grs when I weight it?
Or do I just tinker with my powder measure until I can get it to throw 65 grs by volume?
I understand the powder must be compressed.

Oyeboten
February 25, 2010, 07:32 PM
Old Loading Tables for BP did tend to state weight in Grains for the Powder Charge.

And, the concensus, has always been, to load impirically, as others have already said here - Load to where the Powder Charge shall be compressed well once all is said and done, however much BP that is.

This impirical volume of course, if weighed, will tend to be what the Books said anyway, BUT, it may be a little different also, if, say, one's powder has absorbed some atmospheric Humidity, thus, being heavier by weight for it, and, thus, having less volume for that weight, than the probably 'dry' as dry can be Powder used when tabulating the Charges listed in Books.


If wishing to use reduced Charges, then, Wads and or filler on top of the Powder, under the Bullet, and, making sure there is still good compression of the charge, appears to be the traditional and approved solution, and, definitely, never, ever, allowing an Air Gap to be present in the Cartridge.


I've been very pleased with 3F BP and a thin Grease Wafer for re-loading .38 Special.


Very good ( above smokeless 'saami' load spec for for same bullet ) FPS, nice healthy recoil, nice deep report, and, if breezy out as usual, I do not even notice any smoke.

BHP FAN
February 25, 2010, 07:49 PM
I do .38 S&W and .45 Colt this way,as well as .45-70. 3f Goex in the pistolas and 2f Goex in my .45-70,as it fouls less.

TomADC
February 25, 2010, 08:22 PM
Whats your 45-70 load? I put 65grs in a starline case and it sits about a 1/4 inch from the case mouth, and as long as 45-70 bullets are I would get some compression.

BHP FAN
February 25, 2010, 08:50 PM
I use 60 gr. of 2 f Goex and then I have three different molds,and buy two different additional bullets.The very best accuracy so far comes from a Saeco mold Saeco 1-Cavity Magnum Bullet Mold #023 45 Caliber (458-459 Diameter) 375 Grain Spitzer Point, from Midway,that a buddy of mine had.I have GOT to get that mold...anyways,that bullet, Lee Aloxed, with a tiny thin cork wafer wad from Buffalo Arms co. [just to hold the powder in during my loading process,and make the round totally waterproof,and mitigate ANY moisture from the Wonder Wad I put in next,seat with my Lee dies,and that Trapdoor flat knocks over the gong,and shoots flat out to 200 yards.I don't even need to flip up my sight.I also make a similar load using my home cast 385's from a Lyman round nose mold.I started out with a 405 SPG lubed RNFP over the cork and felt wads to duplicate the the original 55 gr. Cavalry Carbine load I read about in Bud Waite's definitive book ''Trapdoor Springfield'' that he wrote with B.D. Ernst.

BHP FAN
February 25, 2010, 08:58 PM
Oh,and I love Starline brass.I have 255 total,200 are Starline,the rest were donated from a Gatling gun,and are mixed Winchester and Remington cases a buddy gatherd up after a demonstration.I shoot them in my original 1884 Trapdoor rifle cut down to ''officer's model'' configuration,and in my H&R Cavalry Carbine.

ClemBert
February 25, 2010, 09:57 PM
I have drop tubes & will use them but seems to me if I pour 65 grs into my volume measure, then weigh that 65 grs by volume weigh 57.7 grs on my digital scale, at least for this can shouldn't every 65 gr by volume weigh 57.7 grs when I weight it?

The answer is yes...for that session from that specific can of powder. It should be consistent especially since you are measuring larger loads than say I am with 45 Colt.

BHP FAN
February 25, 2010, 10:48 PM
''I have drop tubes & will use them but seems to me if I pour 65 grs into my volume measure, then weigh that 65 grs by volume weigh 57.7 grs on my digital scale, at least for this can shouldn't every 65 gr by volume weigh 57.7 grs when I weight it? ''

try it. try it say, ten times.That should give you enough of a sample to see what your variation will be. with that can of powder, on that day. I load by volume, by preference, even when loading smokeless, checking my dipper set against my scale. I'm not fast, but I am accurate.

sundance44s
February 26, 2010, 06:53 AM
I use a powder drop for loading smokeless ...
But with my black powder loads I use the ol volume measure ...and a drop tube on the 45/70
My 45 Colts I just drop the powder from the measure .
It takes alot of time to load good 45/70 rounds ..most of the rifles are pickey about loadings.

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