H&A Underhammer load suggestions?


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rkmitchell
January 11, 2013, 09:32 PM
Hello All,
New here, coming back to blackpowder interests after a decade's break.....been hunting with airguns for the last 10 years.....everything from mice in the barn to African plains game....but that's another story.

I recently picked up a nice H&A underhammer rifle in .40 caliber, with a second .60 caliber barrel still in the white. It is in excellent condition with a tang sight and a fold-down buckhorn sight. I'd like to do a little squirrel hunting with the .40, but would like some advice on load.

Couple of questions:

Is the FFg American Pioneer blackpowder substitute appropriate for the .40, or do I need FFFg? And would 30 grains be about right for a roundball squirrel rifle?

I'm thinking .395 roundball for this one....should be snug with a patch. Have another bullet you might suggest?

Appreciate your help in advance.....have a few weeks of squirrel season left here in KY and hope to enjoy it with my underhammer in hand!

Randy

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BHP FAN
January 11, 2013, 10:42 PM
I would use 60 gr. of 2F Goex. The old rule of thumb was to start with a caliber equals gr. of powder formula, but I usually find the most efficient accuracy/power wise load is just a little up from there.

arcticap
January 11, 2013, 11:54 PM
Is the FFg American Pioneer blackpowder substitute appropriate for the .40, or do I need FFFg?

No, IMO the APP 2F is not really appropriate. The APP 2F is very chunky and more like 1.5F. I usually only buy the 3F which is more like 2.5 F.
The underhammer could make do with the 2F, but 3F would be a better peformer.
APP velocity & performance can be based on ramming with a greater amount of compaction and being consistent about it.

rkmitchell
January 12, 2013, 08:11 PM
I didn't have any powder on hand except for American Pioneer FFg....would have preferred FFFg......using a patched .395 ball. With one patch .010 in width, the ball still loaded ridiculously easy. So I spread lube between two patches for a .020 patch, and the ball loaded more snugly. Overlapping holes at 15 yards. I'll stretch it out some more another day.

I know there are some blackpowder shooters on here, and would be interested in your suggestions as to what load to use.....I'm trying to stay with roundball in this gun.

I also have a .60 caliber barrel for this gun, and wonder what you would shoot out of this gun with that barrel on.....how much powder, etc. Again, trying to stay with roundball.

Love the looks of these guns, and most shooters I run into haven't had much dealings with them, so they are still something of a novelty to many shooters. They were popular in the early 1800's up in the New England area from what I hear.

How do I go about adding pictures? I've uploaded them to photobucket.....do I simply need to enter the links?

Randy

arcticap
January 13, 2013, 02:23 AM
Click on the yellow square photo icon at the top of your advanced reply box, delete the http:// that appears in the java script image box, and enter your photo's direct URL. Then click okay and the URL will appear in the reply box where your cursor was.
Photo links can also be uploaded directly to the THR server by clicking on the manage attachments tab that appears under the advanced full size reply box.
If using the quick rely box then click on the Go Advanced tab underneath it for the full size reply box to appear.
"Forum" URL codes only need to be copy & pasted into the reply box if they're compatible.

rkmitchell
January 13, 2013, 05:49 PM
http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h78/rkmitchell/40caliber5_zps93cb7ddf.jpg

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h78/rkmitchell/40caliber1_zps43b579c0.jpg

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h78/rkmitchell/40caliber2_zpsc325bcb9.jpg

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h78/rkmitchell/40caliber3_zpsca0c44ce.jpg

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h78/rkmitchell/40caliber4_zps434e09cc.jpg

boommer
January 14, 2013, 01:46 AM
Nice looking under hammer set up well ! but you really need to feed that girl real 3 f black.I shoot a under hammer in 45 set up close to the same as yours but mine is 45 1-18 twist barrel and shoot slugs 455 gr 90gr 2 f . you really need to get down to .10 patch to draw any accuracy out of her.

rkmitchell
January 14, 2013, 07:56 AM
.....to reduce the size of the patch....yes?

If .395 just rolls in, does that mean this is closer to a .41 caliber? I could try .40 roundball in it.

Randy

boommer
January 14, 2013, 10:07 AM
yes, thinner patch .10 ths try and get your hands on some .400 balls and .15 patching. .405 balls are a custom mold. Then again depending on the twist rate of the barrel you might have a nice conical thrower there and a better fitting fit to the bore. I see you have plenty of sight there on that smoke pole to reach out there and touch something. I've just had better luck with .10 than .15 patch but you can't get there you cant get there.

Pete D.
January 15, 2013, 09:46 AM
That is one handsome firearm. I am jealous.
I have an underhammer pistol that I thoroughly enjoy shooting. A rifle would be very nice to go along with it.
Pete

rkmitchell
January 17, 2013, 04:17 PM
.....or is it too much trouble to mess with?

I spoke to a few folks at the local gun shop, and they have done it, but it seems to be a pain in the butt for most folks....

....was wondering about safety issues, as well.

Randy

Rattus58
January 17, 2013, 05:08 PM
Hello All,
New here, coming back to blackpowder interests after a decade's break.....been hunting with airguns for the last 10 years.....everything from mice in the barn to African plains game....but that's another story.

I recently picked up a nice H&A underhammer rifle in .40 caliber, with a second .60 caliber barrel still in the white. It is in excellent condition with a tang sight and a fold-down buckhorn sight. I'd like to do a little squirrel hunting with the .40, but would like some advice on load.

Couple of questions:

Is the FFg American Pioneer blackpowder substitute appropriate for the .40, or do I need FFFg? And would 30 grains be about right for a roundball squirrel rifle?

I'm thinking .395 roundball for this one....should be snug with a patch. Have another bullet you might suggest?

Appreciate your help in advance.....have a few weeks of squirrel season left here in KY and hope to enjoy it with my underhammer in hand!

Randy
Here is my opinion.... In most cases FFF is going to be the best powder to use for anything up to and through 54's in my opinion... and that is all I use... even for my 58's... why? One powder is easier to deal with...

However, again in my opinion, powder is powder and a cap will ignite them all, so it comes down to accuracy. The bigger the barrel, the less pressure developed and a slower powder might benefit overall. You will find numerous examples where 2F outperforms 3F or RS performs better than P in smaller calibers, and for me... like not letting any good crisis go to waste, I don't let any good powder go to waste... :)

I also have the a 40 and .395 with a slick tight patch works for me better than the .390. To me, long twists are more forgiving than short to a patched ball, so if its tight it probably doesn't matter... just know... (the missuse echo) that you can't build down a .395 but you can build up (patch thickness and compression) a .390.... :)

Aloha... :cool:

rkmitchell
January 18, 2013, 02:00 PM
.....about building up.

Went to the local fabric store today looking for pillow ticking to use.....they didn't have any remnants, but a sewing friend of my wife's has a large piece that might work. I'll have to look at the material when she brings it by later this weekend.

Randy

Rattus58
January 18, 2013, 03:22 PM
.....about building up.

Went to the local fabric store today looking for pillow ticking to use.....they didn't have any remnants, but a sewing friend of my wife's has a large piece that might work. I'll have to look at the material when she brings it by later this weekend.

Randy
Good luck with this... :) Patches are tricky... just because it fits doesn't mean its right... compression of the patch is important... .010 patch thickness might be right, but it might take a .015 or .012 patch to make it "fit" because some materials "compress" quite a bit. Trial and error... :)

Aloha... :cool:

treemaker
January 18, 2013, 08:15 PM
My H&A underhammer .45 has a fast twist, about 1 turn in 20" and shoots round balls best with 30 grains of fffg.
My .40 flinter has a slow twist and shoots 40 grains of fffg best.

boommer
January 18, 2013, 09:23 PM
3fff for round ball up to .50 cal as rule, 2.ff to 1.5 conical 45 -50cal, 2ff is the best all around powder to keep in stock,next to 3fff. PILLOW TICKING means nothing ,any cotton thickness will work [ tee shirt mat] NO POLY OR MAN MADE...

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