1st attempt at antler powder measures

Discussion in 'Shooting Accessories' started by Are. M., Jan 21, 2020.

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  1. Jan 21, 2020 #1

    Are. M.

    Are. M.

    Are. M.

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    I made these bad boys for a blanket shoot coming up. "Primitive decoration" with rudimentary tools. Files and a scratch awl. 30, 60, and 90 grs. Gunpowder and water to fill the scratches. The final on the 60 grain measure was turned on an old Dremel Moto-lathe. Any tips or tricks I should know about for next time?
     

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  2. Jan 21, 2020 #2

    Juice Jaws

    Juice Jaws

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    Very nice, I would be proud to win one.
     
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  3. Jan 21, 2020 #3

    Brokennock

    Brokennock

    Brokennock

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    They look good to me. If you drilled them out using a power drill you probably noticed a stink and some tough to remove antler packed into your drill bit. I've been warming the drill bit in an alcohol burner I use to heat glue on broadheads and then rubbing a little beeswax on the bit. Seems to keep the antler from sticking.
     
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  4. Jan 21, 2020 #4

    Jeff Gleason

    Jeff Gleason

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    Nice work!
     
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  5. Jan 21, 2020 #5

    ppg1949

    ppg1949

    ppg1949

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    Very nice work. If that is a ball starter in the upper right, I like that you put a design on it. It gives me some ideas. Thanks for sharing.
     
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  6. Jan 21, 2020 #6

    brewer12345

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    Deer or elk antler? Very nice work.
     
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  7. Jan 21, 2020 #7

    Eddie Southgate

    Eddie Southgate

    Eddie Southgate

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    Looks good to me .
     
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  8. Jan 21, 2020 #8

    Are. M.

    Are. M.

    Are. M.

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    It is a ball starter. Second one I've made. The first was a big one for my pistol.

    The antler is shed from a whitetail.

    Thanks for the compliments, y'all.
     
  9. Jan 21, 2020 #9

    brewer12345

    brewer12345

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    Are, can you talk about the process of how you made these? How did you make sure your measure was accurate? Have some shed and have been thinking about making these, but haven't thought through how to do this. The rifle that likes 110 grains would be a bigger hunk of shed...
     
  10. Jan 21, 2020 #10

    Brokennock

    Brokennock

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    The way I see it, and how I go about it depending on what I have to work with for antler, is that there are two options for determining volume of the measure.
    On smaller antler pieces I drill as deep as I can then redrill as wide as the shape of the antler will allow. Then use a different sizes of rat tail files and tapered half round files to make the hole as big as I feel comfortable with as far as wall thickness is concerned. And to shape the opening to look nice and pour well. Then, I test it buy comparing it to an adjustable measure. What it is, it is. I could at this point make it hold less buy cutting off and reshaping the open end.
    On larger pieces I sometimes might do the same, make it as large as possible then trim it back.
    If you have multiple pieces of antler to choose from, and want a specific volume, another method is to match the hole size and depth of your adjustable measure. Off the top of my head, I think the diameter of the hole in my brass adjustable measure is 3/8". Inset the measure at the desired charge, place the 3/8" drill bit point down in the adjustable measure and wrap masking tape around it where it meets the top of the measure marking the depth. Then I choose a piece of antler that will allow that size hole to be drilled into it leaving the smallest amount of wall thickness possible. I usually drill a tiny bit deeper to give myself a little extra at the top edge to shape the edges, form a slight pouring lip, and finish it off smooth.

    Of course there is good old try and try again. Make a hole, test it for volume, hoping it is too small, and keep making it bigger a little at a time and retesting. I have some fine corn cob polishing media that is very similar to the 3f powder I usually use so I do most of my testing with that until I'm basically down to finishing work. Before I started using the media I kept a small bit of powder in a tiny pistol flask that was only used for testing the volume of measures. Test powder went back into it, not back into a container of powder that would be used for shooting.
     
  11. Jan 21, 2020 #11

    Are. M.

    Are. M.

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    Everything Brokennock said. 3/8ths bit. Ream with files. Measure your powder regularly. Decorate if you want. Use your spent coffee grounds to darken the antler a smidge. Only difference in our processes is I pour my powder back into a container. I call it my plinking powder. A proprietary blend of Goex, OE, and Scheutzen 2 and 3f.
     
  12. Jan 21, 2020 #12

    Grimord

    Grimord

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    If you drill the hole too deep, you can use paraffin wax to fill the bottom of the hole, then carefully, (by hand) use the drill bit to remove as much wax as required to get the volume you want.
    I have made several antler powder measures over the years and found that a measure that drops 1/2 of my hunting load charge is very useful because usually the 1/2 charge is a good target or plinking load. One measure for both loads.
     
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  13. Jan 21, 2020 #13

    renegadehunter

    renegadehunter

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    Those look great Are. M.! I really like your decoration.
    I like to cut the top of mine at a bit of an angle to help with pouring.
     
  14. Jan 21, 2020 #14

    Brokennock

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    I should have mentioned that even with the 3/8" bit to match the adjustable measure, I start smaller, a lot smaller, and work up 3/8" to prevent the bit binding then splitting the antler.
     
  15. Jan 21, 2020 #15

    Are. M.

    Are. M.

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    Thats why there's not four powder measures pictured. Thanks for the pro tip.
     
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  16. Jan 21, 2020 #16

    Rifleman1776

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    Very nice. Too good for a blanket shoot give away.
     
  17. Jan 21, 2020 #17

    EC121

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    I made these with no amount in mind. I had an on-call type of job and killed time in the maintenance shop making these while waiting for a call. Don' think I ever made one off the clock. The paper mill paid me good money to make them. ;) I traded or gave them away.
    It is easy enough to plug the bottom to get the desired amount. Just get a sharp pointed tool and go to scratching. I used a TIG welding electrode ground to a point and glued in a dowel. It is a learn as you go type of thing. I used a pencil lead or cigarette ashes to fill the engraving. Wet your finger and dip it in the filler material. I drilled through the antler and plugged it with a piece of broom handle with a stud turned on it to fill the hole.
    measure pics 005.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2020
  18. Jan 21, 2020 #18

    hanshi

    hanshi

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    Very nice powder measures, EC101 and Are. M. I use trial and error to get my measures to hold the charge that I want. It's easy to use an adjustable measure to figure out the volume. Here are a couple of plain ones I made long ago.[​IMG]
     
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  19. Jan 22, 2020 #19

    brewer12345

    brewer12345

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    Thanks guys. How exactly do you use spent coffee grounds to add color?
     
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  20. Jan 22, 2020 #20

    Are. M.

    Are. M.

    Are. M.

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    Pour hot water over the old grounds and chunk the antler over in it for a little bit.
     

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