Newby BP Question on patched round balls.

Discussion in 'Blackpowder & Musket' started by Shade, Oct 4, 2010.

  1. Shade

    Shade New Member

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    I have an optima magnum in-line rifle 1:24 twist. I tried for the first time
    yesterday shooting patched round balls out of it, the rifle is .500 cal and the
    balls were .490 I was using prelubed patches. I was all over the target at 50
    yds. This rifle was giving me sub 2" groups last time I had it out with
    saboted .45 bullets. I tried both Shockeys powder and Hodgdon's Pyrodex
    RS, the Pyrodex was much cleaner but no more accurate, I was shooting 150
    grains of powder.

    TIA for any insight.
     
  2. Walley

    Walley New Member

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    Your rifle was not designed to shoot patched round balls. In fact CVA recommends that it should not be done with a gun with a 1 in 24 twist. If you want to shoot round ball get a rifle with a 1 in 48 or 1 in 66 twist.

    1 turn in 66" rifling will do best with round ball,
    1 turn in 48" round ball, ball-ets, short conical bullet and saboted pistol bullet,
    1 turn in 28" conical bullet and saboted bullet.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2010

  3. Fisherking

    Fisherking New Member

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    +1 on what Walley said.
    F.K.
     
  4. stalkingbear

    stalkingbear Well-Known Member

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    The patched round balls were seriously "overstabilized" or spinning too fast with that rifling. You're stuck with saboted bullets or conicals with that barrel.
     
  5. quigleysharps4570

    quigleysharps4570 New Member

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    Like the others have said...too fast of twist for that load you're trying. If you want to try patched roundballs out of that rifle drop your powder charge way, way down to about 70 grs. and see what happens...might work, might not. I had an Optima given to me a few years back...wasn't ever gonna shoot it but thought it might make a rabbit/squirrel gun with head shots. Shoots good with 35 grs. of 2f Goex and patched roundball. Far as I ever got with it though.
     
  6. Shade

    Shade New Member

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    Thanks for all the replies, that does explain everything I witnessed yesterday.
     
  7. Shade

    Shade New Member

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    Follow up question, a friend gave me a Lee mold for black powder
    as I cast bullets for my .357 Mag and .45 acp. Now I do know that
    you should use pure lead for BP. Of which I have accumulated some
    now.

    Part number: 90472 Description: MOLD_500-360-M
    Improved Minie, Traditional Design
    Lee Precision, Inc. Reloading Tools and Equipment: Black Powder Molds

    My question is will this work in my Optima Rifle.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2010
  8. stalkingbear

    stalkingbear Well-Known Member

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    Just be aware that you can't drive them too fast or you'll "blow the skirt" or create excessive leading.
     
  9. Shade

    Shade New Member

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    I have a chronograph, so what would be too fast and what would you recommend for a starting charge 70 grains or 100 ish...
     
  10. quigleysharps4570

    quigleysharps4570 New Member

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    I would start with 60 grs. and go from there.