Measuring powder


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DynaBMan
November 3, 2013, 11:02 AM
Long story short, I had to sell my Ruger Redhawk .44 Magnum because of carpal tunnel and arthritis issues. I can no longer hunt deer with it. I got enough money out of it to purchase a new Thompson Center Omega .50 caliber rifle, blued with a black synthetic stock.

I have previously had a Traditions bolt action rifle that was a pain in the most extreme areas to clean. I won't go into that, other than to acknowledge there is a certain amount of effort that will go into working up a load that works good in the new rifle.

To my question, measuring the powder. I plan to use Pyrodex loose powder under a 245 grain Powerbelt bullet and want to make sure I am measuring it properly. I will start with 90 grains. I am assuming the proper way to measure it is to pour it into the measure and tap it gently to settle the grains. Correct me if I am wrong. Any other advice is welcome.

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rodwha
November 3, 2013, 11:27 AM
That is a very good way to more accurately measure your powder.

I have used Pyrodex (P/RS), Olde Eynsford black powder, and Triple 7. Of those Pyrodex is the nastiest and hardest to clean. I hate the stuff and won't buy any. You may want to consider another powder.

Col4570
November 3, 2013, 12:42 PM
Use Black Powder and Weigh all Charges.This should give consistency for each shot.

DynaBMan
November 3, 2013, 02:52 PM
Thanks for the advice, fellas. I'll be doing a search for better powders, but what would you suggest?

Ifishsum
November 3, 2013, 06:03 PM
I don't find Pyrodex to be all that bad, especially when I'm wiping the barrel between every shot. Upside is that it's inexpensive and easy to find. Seems to clean up the same as Goex, unless I'm shooting a number of loads without a cleaning patch between or if the bore is a bit rough to begin with.

That said, I usually prefer to use regular Goex FFg when I can get it. Triple 777 is the cleanest sub that I've personally used but I just don't feel it's worth the extra cost for most of the casual ML shooting that I do. For a dedicated hunting load it's probably a good choice.

Your measuring method sounds good, the key is consistency.

Driftwood Johnson
November 3, 2013, 07:30 PM
Howdy

I dip Black Powder with Lee dippers all the time. The instructions that come with the Lee dippers specifically say not to tap the measure to settle the charge. Scoop out the charge, leaving it heaped up. Then scrape off the excess using an index card or some other small straight edge. That is the way I have been dipping powder for many years, no tapping, just scrape it off level with the top of the measure.

The key to accuracy with ANY type of gunpowder, Black, Substitute, or Smokeless, is to keep your powder charges consistent. You will have more consistency allowing the powder to fill the measure naturally, heaping it up, and scraping it off than you will tapping it down.

BowerR64
November 4, 2013, 03:43 AM
What would be the difference if you tap it or leave it heaping?

As long as you do it the same way every time.

Say scoup, tap 5 times then scrape.

Weighing it im sure would be the best way but its not very practical in the field. Now if you use pre charge tubes you could weigh 20 or so at home and cap the tubes then in the field you just dump it in. That might not be to bad.

rodwha
November 4, 2013, 11:08 AM
I was at the range yesterday and decided to use my Pyrodex through my pistol so as to help get rid of it faster (I've been using it in my rifle while I'm breaking it in). It is just so much dirtier than Olde Eynsford, which is a sporting grade black powder made by Goex to compete with Swiss.

Since Olde E gives very similar results to Triple 7 I've about settled on using it for the majority of my shooting and hunting. It's fairly inexpensive, and I'd think that anyone who sells regular Goex would possibly have it too.

At Grafs regular Goex costs $15.99/lb, Olde E is $16.99/lb, T7 is $22.59/lb, and Pyrodex is $15.59/lb.

Do not attempt to use Blackhorn 209 unless you are set up to use shotgun primers (209) as percussion caps won't set it off.

To my way of thinking Olde E makes the most sense. You could use a little less and get similar results as standard Goex, which slightly increases the number of shots per pound, and makes the cost difference a wash at the least. But this is only my opinion, and it could very well be your gun will shoot best with another powder. Only trial will tell.

Pulp
November 4, 2013, 12:40 PM
If you have a powder scale, one method would be to get a volume of Pryodex that you want, weigh it on your scale, then use the scale and a trickler to weigh the rest of your charges. Put each weighed charge in a pill bottle, film canister or something similar to take to the range with you. Just be sure to set your measure for the volume of genuine BP you want.

Example: I just set my measure to throw 80 grains of BP. When filled with Pyrodex the charge weighed 54.6 grains. I'd set my measure to 54.6 grains, then weigh all the charges I wanted to take to the range with me.

My measure at the same setting threw 78.4 grains of Graf FFg.

Note: if you wanted to try 777 or some other sub, you'd have to repeat the process to find the weight of an 80 grain equivalent of the sub.

msnden
November 4, 2013, 10:34 PM
Earlier this year I purchased the same gun, I also have an older Knight Revolution, I have been using the same loads in both, 95gr (by volume) of triple 7, & 250 gr Shockwave bullets. this combo works well for me.
I couldn't get the Powerbelts to pattern at all in the Omega, I really wanted to as I like them for any follow up shot if needed. They do fine in the Knight. On my last outing I wanted to burn up some triple 7 pellets I have had on the shelf for sometime, I was very surprised at the accuracy I achieved using 2 pellets & the Shockwaves. jmop

BowerR64
November 4, 2013, 11:42 PM
Why wouldnt you just make it an even 55 grains? why 54.6?

rodwha
November 5, 2013, 11:37 AM
It's 80 grns by volume, but the weight is what he stated as 54.something grns.

Rattus58
November 6, 2013, 03:06 AM
Long story short, I had to sell my Ruger Redhawk .44 Magnum because of carpal tunnel and arthritis issues. I can no longer hunt deer with it. I got enough money out of it to purchase a new Thompson Center Omega .50 caliber rifle, blued with a black synthetic stock.

I have previously had a Traditions bolt action rifle that was a pain in the most extreme areas to clean. I won't go into that, other than to acknowledge there is a certain amount of effort that will go into working up a load that works good in the new rifle.

To my question, measuring the powder. I plan to use Pyrodex loose powder under a 245 grain Powerbelt bullet and want to make sure I am measuring it properly. I will start with 90 grains. I am assuming the proper way to measure it is to pour it into the measure and tap it gently to settle the grains. Correct me if I am wrong. Any other advice is welcome.
I'd actually consider starting your loads at something like 70 grains and working up from there. I like to settle my powder but it isn't really critical, though consistency is consistency.

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