Unload or leave loaded ??

Discussion in 'Blackpowder & Musket' started by Glock17TJ, Sep 24, 2009.

  1. Glock17TJ

    Glock17TJ New Member

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    I just got me a new Thompson Encore barrel. Ok...I load it up go hunting and never see a Deer or shoot it, Now what ?? I know to remove the 209 Primer, but what about the bullet and powder charge still left in the barrel. I have had guys tell me to just leave it in there and it will be OK for your next hunt. I really don't like the idea of leaving the gun loaded and riding around with it to and from my hunting land....which is almost 30 miles away. I have seen the CO2 things to discharge your blackpowder rifle. I guess I need to know if I need to get one or what I need to do..???
     
  2. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper New Member

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    I hunt with a flintlock and 9 out of ten times at the end of a days hunt I will fire it into a safe backstop (like a dirt embankment) to unload. I will then run a damp patch or two down the bore to remove most of the fouling, followed by a patch coated in a little bore butter to prevent rust.

    Sometimes if I'm hunting the next morning, and its not too damp out I will place a toothpick in the flash hole to seal the chamber against collecting moisture and store it like that. the next mornings hunt I pull the toothpick, prime the pan and go hunting.

    I think you would be fine pulling the primer from your inline and storing like that for short periods if you dont feel like unloading, but I'd probably find a plug for the nipple to prevent the charge from absorbing moisture from the air.

    hope this helps
     

  3. skullcrusher

    skullcrusher New Member

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    I've left mine with pyrodex and projectile in the barrel for long periods with no trouble at all. I'm in Ohio and by law it is considered unloaded with the primer removed. Again, I've had no touble with leaving the barrel loaded.
     
  4. Hawg

    Hawg Active Member

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    I don't use an inline but sometimes I leave my sidelock loaded for weeks at a time. As long as moisture doesn't get to it it will be fine. If it bothers you unload it.
     
  5. RL357Mag

    RL357Mag New Member

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    I load my sidelock at the beginning of the hunting season and it stays loaded until the end of the season, or until I see a deer. At the end of each day the rifle stays either in my unheated cabin overnight, or in the garage, to prevent condensation from forming. I would not leave it loaded for a whole season since black powder is hygroscopic and will attract moisture, thus causing rust to form in the barrel. Besides, before loading the rifle at the beginning of the season, I always fire 3 caps to dry out any residual oil left in the nipple/bolster, and this residue needs to be cleaned out even if the powder charge and bullet are pulled without firing at the end of the season.
     
  6. Hawg

    Hawg Active Member

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    Unfired powder isn't hydroscopic, fired powder residue is. My father in law had a CVA Hawken. He didn't use it for several years before he died. After he died I took it out and it was still loaded. No rust and first cap fired it off. I load mine and if I don't get a shot I bring it home and bring it inside. Course our winters aren't as bad as some so maybe that makes a difference
     
  7. RL357Mag

    RL357Mag New Member

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    Unburned black powder is HYGROSCOPIC. Hygroscopy is the ability of a substance to take in moisture from the environment either through absorption or adsorption. The salt peter and charcoal in black powder are both HYGROSCOPIC. The fact that a black powder gun can be left loaded for years and still fire is simply a function of the seal formed by the patched round ball or lubed conical bullet, and the percission cap or hammer over the nipple. I have had BP guns fire after being loaded for a long time also, but if I'm going to depend on my gun for hunting or defense I sure as hell am not going to be relying on a powder charge that has been in the barrel for weeks on end. I once had an ignition failure with a deer in my sights because I mistakenly brought the rifle in my house the night before a Thangsgiving Day hunt. The temperature differential of my house (70deg.) and the outside morning air (45 deg) caused enough condensation to prevent the powder charge from igniting. I even drip wax over the caps to prevent moisture from entering through the nipple . I had to unscrew the nipple, pick some damp powder out, and dribble a small amount of fresh,dry, powder in, to get the gun to fire.
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2009
  8. Gatekeeper

    Gatekeeper New Member

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    ^^^^Thats why I plug the touch hole:thumbsup:
     
  9. alsaqr

    alsaqr Well-Known Member Supporter

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    One of my CVA inline guns was loaded in early June of this year. Last Wednesday I took it to the range to check the zero. Primed the gun and fired at the 100 meter target. Bullet went into the 3" bullseye. The next shot from a dirty barrel went into the same hole.
     
  10. RL357Mag

    RL357Mag New Member

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    Inlines which use 209 shotshell primers are far more likely to ignite an old charge of powder than a sidelocked #11 percussion capped rifle....a 209 primer will even ignite damp powder...and many inlines have stainless barrels which won't rust or corrode as quickly. Regardless of the type of rifle, I personally would never leave one loaded for more than the length of the hunting season, other than pure laziness, I can't see a logical reason to do so.
     
  11. Hawg

    Hawg Active Member

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    Guess I'm just lazy.:D
     
  12. DrGonzo11

    DrGonzo11 New Member

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    Where'd my posts go???? Mods- A friendly PM would be nice when deleting something.
     
  13. watssm

    watssm New Member

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    Unload it

    I always unload my Thunderhawk every night. Our hunt is late November and it is generally bitter cold with 2 ft of snow. Hang and miss fires are common in this weather.
    My partner NEVER unloaded his Limon. Last year he pulled a 50 yd broadside shot on a dandy bull due to a hang fire.
    Not only did I get to give him **** all year, I also got to here him say, " you are right, I should reload every morning".
    BTW, I shot that bull that afternoon...
     
  14. petesridge

    petesridge New Member

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    Load or unload

    Hey Glock: I always unloaded my muzzleloader every evening when we got in from our hunt. Well I was talked into buying one of those Co2 dischargers What I didn't know was that there is a liquid sealer inside those cartridges. well I used the damn thing, Reloaded the next morning. I jumped a nice 4 point buck (blacktail) you guessed it snap-snap-snap. I looked at the end of my nipple it was full of green-yellow slime. anyway buck got away. So everytime I use a new CO2 cartridge I blow it off acouple times before using it on my muzzleloader. Hope this helps someone down the line. Keep your powder dry. Pete
     
  15. Sharps shooter

    Sharps shooter New Member

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    RL357Mag said:
    "Unburned black powder is HYGROSCOPIC. Hygroscopy is the ability of a substance to take in moisture from the environment either through absorption or adsorption. The salt peter and charcoal in black powder are both HYGROSCOPIC. The fact that a black powder gun can be left loaded for years and still fire is simply a function of the seal formed by the patched round ball or lubed conical bullet, and the percission cap or hammer over the nipple."

    Might I also add that black powder also contains sulphur. Sulphur dioxide is formed when sulphur is burned in oxygen. It reacts with water to form sulphurous acid (same as pollutants causing "acid rain"). So any trace of uncleaned powder residue has the potential to turn to acid under the right conditions.