Proper muzzleloader length for fast reloading?

Discussion in 'Blackpowder & Musket' started by Scratchammo, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. Scratchammo

    Scratchammo New Member

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    At what total length should a custom muzzleloader be to ease in fast reloading? If you were to stand it up straight against you, should it come below, to the bottom, or to center of your sternum?
     
  2. mountainman13

    mountainman13 New Member

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    You really thing a difference of 3" is going to effect reloading time? Fast reloading comes with practice and premeasured loads.
    Rushed reloading leads to accidents anyway. It is better to be steady and safe.
     

  3. orangello

    orangello New Member

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    It would seem that the shorter the barrel, the easier it would be to manipulate the ramrod. I can load my little sidelock pistol VERY quickly.

    Now the optimum length would probably have more to do with your height and how high up you could reach to pull the ramrod out of the barrel when reloading.

    Just my opinion, and i am no expert.
     
  4. 303tom

    303tom Well-Known Member

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    There is no such thing as a proper muzzleloader length for fast reloading...........
     
  5. Scratchammo

    Scratchammo New Member

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    Not at the moment.
     
  6. HockaLouis

    HockaLouis New Member

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    I would think where you don't have to bring your arms up above your elbows but I know folk who swear a Bess is faster to load than a trade gun... They subscribe to "longer is better" which I personally don't like the idea of!
    :eek:
     
  7. 303tom

    303tom Well-Known Member

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    That right there is what I am talking about................I like a shorter rifle.
     
  8. Shoop

    Shoop New Member

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    You can make paper cartridges to speed up the process a bit.
     
  9. orangello

    orangello New Member

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    I thought about this a bit last night. I think that the best height for the top of the barrel from the ground, with the rifle standing straight up, is the height at which the arc of my right arm allows me to insert and remove the ramrod and pack the charge without having to adjust my grip on my ramrod. Belt buckle level seems about the minimum height for the top of the barrel, while bottom of my ribcage seems about the max comfortable height. I am 6'1"+- an inch with a 36" inseam on jeans, so my perfect barrel height would vary some from people of different heights, much like the height of our perspective dream flatheaded, midget waitresses/servers/hookers.
     
  10. HockaLouis

    HockaLouis New Member

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    I wonder how many people will get that reference Orange...
     
  11. Hawg

    Hawg Active Member

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    My 33" barreled Hawken comes to the bottom of my sternum, right at the juncture of the ribs but I'm only 5"8".
     
  12. Scratchammo

    Scratchammo New Member

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    That makes good sense to me.
     
  13. Scratchammo

    Scratchammo New Member

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    Does it feel natural when reloading?
     
  14. 303tom

    303tom Well-Known Member

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    Yeah I Wonder...................
     
  15. Hawg

    Hawg Active Member

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    Yeah, it feels pretty natural.
     
  16. Scratchammo

    Scratchammo New Member

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    Thanks for the info.
     
  17. nitestalker

    nitestalker New Member

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    The rifles carried by hunters on foot were long barreled. The rifle was not always fatal from the first shot. The hunters preferred a rifle that put the muzzle near the shooters nose. The idea being the gun could be loaded while the shooter watched his target.
    The heavy barreled short Hawken type rifle referred to as a "Yeager" by Western hunters was designed for the horse back hunters of the open plains. The Hawken did not need the balance of a Long rifle. It was heavy barreled and thick wristed for dangerous Western game.
    The art of speed loading any muzzle loader was to simply pour the powder don't measure and spit a naked ball down the bore. Men like Wetzel could and did load their flint locks on a dead run.:eek:
     
  18. Scratchammo

    Scratchammo New Member

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    I guess that explains why their barrels were so long.
     
  19. F4U

    F4U Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If you are from northern Ohio you can't miss it.
     
  20. nitestalker

    nitestalker New Member

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    The rifles were fired from rest the long barrel also aided resting on tree limbs etc. When inspecting originals you will often find the rear sight has moved forward and rear ward many times. This was done to compassionate for aging eyes. The longer barrel was also considered to be more efficient with black powder.
    Many of these rifles had the barrels shortened as the hunters moved from the forest to the plains. The horse changed the long arms of the day.:)