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Savage Muzzleloader Ka-Boom.....

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by Brian in Oregon, Dec 21, 2011.

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  1. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Graphic pics of damage to hand at link.

    The issue appears to be that Savage says some smokeless powders are OK in their muzzleloaders. It's not clear if people are not loading them right, or are leaving air gaps, using the wrong smokeless powder, or if Savage has overestimated their strength of their gun. The point is anyone who has one and is using smokeless powder might want to rethink that practice until the facts are fully known.
     
  2. skeet_man

    skeet_man Well-Known Member

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    Brian wasn't kidding when he said graphic. Not for someone with a weak stomach or faint heart. Suggest you take his word for it if this is the case.
     
  3. CalvinMD

    CalvinMD Well-Known Member

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    I know a lot of guys with them who love them and have no trouble....I'm thinking this guy was experimenting with non approved powders or had a brain fart and double charged...or the bullet was way far from being seated on the powder..usually the end of the rips in the barrel closest to the muzzle indicate where the obstruction point was before all hell broke lose...poor guy..hes got a long road ahead but at least hes still got the hand
     
  4. School Teacher

    School Teacher Well-Known Member

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    Ouch, very graphic pictures.

    I am sure that properly loaded (weighed charges) the Savage muzzle loader is very safe.

    However, soon after they were introduced, I saw a person who was new to muzzle loading using a teaspoon to measure IMR 4227 to charge his new Savage muzzle loader. He said that a level teaspoon was what he was advised to use.

    I informed him about the pressure levels of smokeless powder in rifles and further advised him to carefully read the instructions that came with the rifle. I also suggested that he buy an inexpensive balance beam scale. For encouragement, I told him that weighed charges were more consistent, accurate and safer than charges from a measure, especially a teaspoon.

    He left the range without firing his rifle and I never saw him again. On the plus side, I never heard anything negative about him. He was a nice guy and I assume that he at least read the manual.

    Ed Ward
     
  5. Haskins Bill

    Haskins Bill TS Member

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    Mnaual? We don't need no stinking manual!! Of course I am paraphrasing the line from Treasure of The Sierra Madre staring Humphrey Bogart. I did not click on thephotos i ahve seen them before. Typical brain fart on someones part who thinks they know every G@@@d@@@ thing in the world. Just cleaning out the shallow end of the gene pool I guess.Bill
     
  6. short shucker

    short shucker TS Member

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    Most of the problems exist when people measure smokeless powder by volume (like you do with blackpowder) instead of by weight. This is a bit of confusion not understood by the masses.

    ss
     
  7. TOOLMAKER 251

    TOOLMAKER 251 Active Member

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    I use about 5-7 pounds of black powder per year and shoot with dozens of other BP shooters. I never heard of anyone loading by volume, everything is in grains.No inlines, mostly civil war long guns and revolvers some patch and ball.
     
  8. omgb

    omgb Well-Known Member

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    I shoot many pounds of BP too and everyone I know shoots loads based on volume measured charges. It is expressed in grains but it is measured by volume not by weight. A 70 grain charge by volume is NOT a 70 grain charge by weight. I've been an NRA certified instructor and a DFG Hunter Ed instructor for quite some time and I'm still surprised at how many people get this wrong. There are guys who weight their PB charges...but really, you can go wide by 2 full grains weight and it won't make a hill of Beans difference out to 300 yards.
     
  9. short shucker

    short shucker TS Member

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    Well since my BP powder measure has a graduated scale that is directly perporsional to volume and not by weight, I would take it that it is grains by volume and not weight. I've never weighed seperate brands of BP, or its substitutes, but I can't imagine they all weigh the same.

    I know full and well that all smokeless powders have different weights by volume. Some are a heck of a lot more dense than others.

    ss
     
  10. TOOLMAKER 251

    TOOLMAKER 251 Active Member

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    The only guys I shoot with that use the adjustable powder measure's in the field is the patch and ball guys. We CW musket shooters all use pre charged plastic containers that hold the powder and Minnie ball. All loads are dropped from a Harrells culver 46 gr. 3F Speaking of variance in weights of different powder mfrs Goex, Swiss, black diamond, elephant, Graf's I have tried them all and find they all (3F) weight very close when dropped from my culver at my known setting.
     
  11. frostyman

    frostyman Well-Known Member

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    Notice the manual says if using bore size bullets only use Pyrodex up to 150 grains. If using smokeless (IMR 47??) only use saboted bullets and 43 grains of powder. If someone tries to measure 43 grains of smokeless in a measure made for blackpowder or Pyrodex, they are crazy.

    Who knows what kind of measure (if any) he used, and he may have just tried 150 grains of smokeless.
     
  12. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    I measure blackpowder by volume for my metallic cartridges.
     
  13. TOOLMAKER 251

    TOOLMAKER 251 Active Member

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    I measure black powder by grains for my metallic cartridges, what reloading manual do you go by that shows volume? How much volume would you use for a 45-70 with a 535 gr. Postell bullet?
     
  14. omgb

    omgb Well-Known Member

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    A 45-90 with a 520 gr bullet will take about 80 grains of BP when compressed an 1/8th of an inch. Now that's 80 grains by volume, I have no idea of the exact weight. This I do remember though from the times I checked, BP, Pyrodex and T7 charges dropped from by Belding and Mull measure vary in weight by a whole bunch eventhough the charge volume through the measure is spot on identical.
     
  15. Beni

    Beni Member

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    I have 2 savage 10ml muzzleloader one set up for distance and the other set up for still hunting. Ive shot hundreds of rounds through both with out a problem. I weigh every load on my digital scale in grains of weight per smokless powder not volume like black powder. IT DOES MAKE A HUGE DIFFERENCE. I too shoot competition with my percussion and flint lock. When I load a charge of fff or ff it is by vol. not weight evan though it says grains on all the powder measures,DO NOT CONFUSE THIS,you do not want to have a pipe bomb in your hands. I love my savage muzzleloaders as does the 20 or so people in my club that have them,shot 2 deer the last day of the season with them good luck and pay attention, beni
     
  16. TOOLMAKER 251

    TOOLMAKER 251 Active Member

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    I mention all the guys I shoot with pre-charge before arriving to a shoot and they weigh the charge that's thrown from a culver type measure. My load is 46 gr. of 3f real black powder and the variation is well within 1/2 gr. If you ever seen or went to a CW skirmish you would see everybody using this type of load. That minnie ball came from my mold that I make for friends, sized to .001 under bore size the gun can shoot more then 100 times before the bore ever needs cleaning.
    toolmaker251_2008_030380.jpg

    toolmaker251_2008_030381.jpg
     
  17. APrice

    APrice Active Member

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    I use a Harrell Premium powder measure, and it, like all other measures throws a charge by volume, not by weight. If you then weigh the charge, you are measuring the charge by weight. The Harrell is the ultimate in accuracy and repeatability, but it is not a balance or scale. It can only measure volume.
     
  18. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    TOOLMAKER 251, quote: <i>"I measure black powder by grains for my metallic cartridges, what reloading manual do you go by that shows volume? How much volume would you use for a 45-70 with a 535 gr. Postell bullet?"</i>

    For that particular bullet, I do not know. I'm not using that bullet. So I do not know how far into the case it would extend.

    I'm not aware of any reloading manuals showing grain charges for blackpowder. This is because recommending a charge by weight does not take into account internal volume differences in the cases due to manufacture and expanded unresized cases, bullet seating, or wad thickness. Recommending a grain charge thus invites leaving an air gap.

    There's nothing wrong with using weighted charges, as long as there is no air gap, but it really does not gain much if anything over volume loading.

    I use slightly compressed loads of blackpowder. The load is calculated to the base of the bullet plus its cardboard and wax wads, plus enough to cause compression, when the charge is dropped from a drop tube. This ensures maximum powder density and no air gap. I make scoops from condemned cartridge cases that are cut to length as scoops, with a brass handle soldered on. (The exception are bottleneck cases - I substitute a straight wall case.)

    I measured the weight of charges, and while they show slight deviation in weight, it is insignificant for accuracy or velocity. This is why blackpowder manufacturers recommend using volume instead of weight.

    To make it clear, I do not care how many grains the charge is. I want the entire case filled up plus enough for powder compression, leaving room for the bullet and wads. Note that you CANNOT overload a metallic cartridge with blackpowder. This sounds pretty alien to smokeless reloaders, but it simply will not allow the bullet to seat if overloaded. In fact, there are some forms of blackpowder loading for precision target shooting where the bullet is forced into the lead and the cartridge is them inserted, filled all the way to the top with blackpowder, capped only by a wad.

    If you're getting velocity and accuracy deviations using volume loading, then something else is wrong.

    For those wondering why I mention not leaving an air gap, blackpowder has the peculiarity of sometimes having a secondary explosion effect with air gaps. This has caused ringing of the chamber, ruining the barrel. The case needs to be filled as much as possible to prevent air gaps, or an inert media needs to fill the air gap if a lesser charge is desirable. Corn meal is often used. Regardless of the method, there must not be an air gap.

    I'm loading blackpowder cartridges for cartridges as small as the 25-20 SS and WCF, up to the 50-140-700, all by volume. Have also done blackpowder cartridge varmint hunting, as well as the usual target sports.
     
  19. CalvinMD

    CalvinMD Well-Known Member

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    I'll stick with 777 in my front stuffers and keep all my fingers
     
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