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dave951

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I need the actual bore diameter and rifling specs on "generic" 50cal patch round ball guns, CVA, TC ,Traditions, etc. Twist is not important. Bore dia land to land and groove depth is what I'm looking for.
 

dave951

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Your job is to take the gun out and find out what combinations shoots the best IN YOUR GUN
I have more than one I've worked up multiple loads for, SO, not my first rodeo

Those who know me also know there is very often method to my madness and seemingly random questions. So, do you know or are you guessing?
 

Griz44Mag

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I have more than one I've worked up multiple loads for, SO, not my first rodeo

Those who know me also know there is very often method to my madness and seemingly random questions. So, do you know or are you guessing?
You have asked a question that has no definite answer.
I answered with the same generality. There is no "standard". There is no "specification" for details of a generalized 50 caliber muzzleloader.
I am not guessing - because there is no ONE answer to your question. If I don't have YOUR gun in my hands so I can measure YOUR gun specifically - then there is no answer to your question.
If you are accurate in saying "I have more than one I've worked up multiple loads for, SO, not my first rodeo" then you already have your answer - for your SPECIFIC gun.
Final bore, final type of rifling, final depth of rifling, final twist rate and direction of rifling, final precision of finish - all variables which are different for every gun made.
So - for those that know you - they may be able to pin down some specifications for the specific guns you own and help you get answers for your random question.
 

ohio ramrod

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While most, not all but most, of the Spanish made 50 caliber rifles run .500 to .502 on the lands, the grooves can be from .002 to .010 deep. CVA and traditions both brought over their rifles from the same source. The ones with the jugar barrels had deeper rifling than the earlier ones.
 

dave951

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While most, not all but most, of the Spanish made 50 caliber rifles run .500 to .502 on the lands, the grooves can be from .002 to .010 deep. CVA and traditions both brought over their rifles from the same source. The ones with the jugar barrels had deeper rifling than the earlier ones.
THIS IS THE TYPE OF INFO I'M LOOKING FOR. THANK YOU!!

As I said, there's method to my madness and a reason for a generalized question. My project doesn't involve a single gun, but a family or group of guns. As an instructor, I see a range of guns in youth camps from new manufactured Traditions to old CVA. Against the time when I (or our instructor group) won't have our tuned 1863s on hand to teach marksmanship, I was thinking of designing a bullet that would be accurate across a range of rifling types found on typical youth camp guns. Said accuracy would ideally be in the range of 3moa and stable to 50yd or so. Most camp ranges are not longer than 25-50yd so long distance stability isn't an issue. I want to design a minie style based on the old T/C Maxi. It has a honkin big grease groove and with a hollow base may be a shooter for short range work with reduced charges of 3f if the hollow base is designed right. That coupled with a reduced weight it should be economical on lead and have mild recoil as well.

Don't even mention sticking with PRB. Part of the problems with PRB involve body parts over the muzzle when we're stressing safety. PRB is slow so with a group of kids, you want to get the most shooting fun in that you can, enter the minie. We already teach PRB as a step of the process and then move to the minie. Besides, the minie was the ultimate in military muzzleloading tech prior to suppository guns. The kids universally like the muskets with minies even though the KE of the recoil is higher. The difference is the design of the musket makes the recoil seem less than it actually is.

The advantages from an instructional standpoint-
1) little to no wiping between shots meaning no foot traffic between a loading table and the firing line with charged guns because guns can be loaded on the firing line like muskets.
2) self contained ammunition ala N-SSA style means the instructor controls all ammo and caps on his/her person. each student is issued one round to load and then one cap prior to firing. All this happens on the line so again, there is no foot traffic to and from a loading table to the firing line or student handling powder or caps and the instructor is right there to maintain muzzle discipline and safety.
3) ease of loading for students. A properly set up minie should go right down the bore without resorting a short starter or pounding with a ramrod.
4) greater safety. it's entirely possible to load a minie N-SSA style and keep body parts from going over the muzzle. Absolutely not possible with PRB.
 

dave951

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You have asked a question that has no definite answer.
I answered with the same generality. There is no "standard". There is no "specification" for details of a generalized 50 caliber muzzleloader.
I am not guessing - because there is no ONE answer to your question. If I don't have YOUR gun in my hands so I can measure YOUR gun specifically - then there is no answer to your question.
If you are accurate in saying "I have more than one I've worked up multiple loads for, SO, not my first rodeo" then you already have your answer - for your SPECIFIC gun.
Final bore, final type of rifling, final depth of rifling, final twist rate and direction of rifling, final precision of finish - all variables which are different for every gun made.
So - for those that know you - they may be able to pin down some specifications for the specific guns you own and help you get answers for your random question.
Griz- reading is fundamental to understanding what is being asked for. At NO POINT was I asking for info on a specific gun in my possession. If I needed that, I'd break out the pin gauges and mics and find out for myself. I need an idea of the range of rifling seen on early CVAs, Jukars, Traditions, etc to get an idea of where to start for designing a custom bullet for use in youth camp rifles by instructors. But you didn't take the time to think through what was asked.
 

Elkhorse

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Hollow base so it engages rifling on variable bores that are within certain size parameters.
 

Griz44Mag

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Griz- reading is fundamental to understanding what is being asked for. At NO POINT was I asking for info on a specific gun in my possession. If I needed that, I'd break out the pin gauges and mics and find out for myself. I need an idea of the range of rifling seen on early CVAs, Jukars, Traditions, etc to get an idea of where to start for designing a custom bullet for use in youth camp rifles by instructors. But you didn't take the time to think through what was asked.
Then I would suggest you state your entire purpose and reason up front instead of waiting until post #6 to actually ask the question you wanted answered.
And yes - I answered the original question based on the limited information you offered. - You did not ask the real question you wanted answered.
I am a seasoned instructor and a trade specific rated teacher with A&M. I taught an Electrical Master's class through an accredited program for 2 decades.
I also trained other trade specific instructors for the same program. There is nothing wrong with my reading, there was a deficit in the informational parameters in your question.
So state your question appropriately and you will get an appropriate answer.
 

griffiga

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I have three .54 caliber muzzle loaders of different makes, and they are all different in the patch/ball/powder requirements for accuracy.
 

necchi

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I understand what your trying to do.
Kids new to shooting sports need action to keep them focused and interested, "Entertained" might be a better term,
Sadly, attention spans are short and with 5 or more lined up, loading a PRB at each shot would soon have the 5th kid in line walking away.

I'd try something based on the 250grn Lee REAL.
If your going to design/make the mold you could add a skirt/hollow base. Doing so could lighten the projectile into that 180/185grn weight range for economy and lower recoil.
Or just use the REAL mold and use a lubed felt button.
For economy just mine the back-stop occasionally to recover spent lead.
 
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I understand the safety aspect and body parts over muzzle but would you not still have the need for a ram rod to seat your designed projectile.
 

necchi

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I understand the safety aspect and body parts over muzzle but would you not still have the need for a ram rod to seat your designed projectile.
Gee, no kidding. That's kind of what muzzle loading is all about, Right?
You should try to understand that the OP is trying to demonstrate to a group of children, and allow each of them to participate with the actual loading and shooting,, it's kind of a big deal with our current culture of video entertained youth.
If he can get them to put down the smart-phone long enough for them to load and pull a trigger,, THAT is an amazing thing to do.
How do ya teach the kids in Campton Hill's?
 

tenngun

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I don’t understand the no body parts over the muzzle aspect of ball vs minnie. A minnie still has to be placed with fingers in to the gun. And rammed home with ramrod, over the gun.
Since your range is short a looser patch ball combo can be used and no starter is required. A .485 ball and .015-.018 patch works well.
Blackpowder maniac has a great , speed patch and no starter idea. The pinpoint accuracy of a tight fit, practice, fine gun and careful load development won’t really matter in the 25- 50 yard range.
 

Notchy Bob

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In my limited experience with N-SSA style shooting, the idea is to minimize body parts over the muzzle, even if it can't be eliminated altogether. I've seen guys loading patched round balls with the ramrod clenched in both fists and the muzzle under their chins. On the other hand, I saw N-SSA shooters pour in a pre-measured charge with no "parts" over the muzzle, insert a Minie bullet with just the tips of the thumb and index finger, then push it down with the ramrod also held only between the thumb and index finger tips. "Thumbing" the ball into the muzzle could get you disqualified. In many cases, I saw some of the fellows get the ramrod started in this way, and then let go. The weight of the steel ramrod alone was enough to push the projectile all the way to the powder. The rod would be extracted with thumb and fingertip alone.

The Minie system enables this. It's not just the bullet. The projectile is properly sized, maybe .002" under bore size (land to land), which makes it easy to load. The rifling is progressive in depth, deeper at the breech than the muzzle. As the powder charge detonates, it blows out the skirt of the hollow-based bullet to fill the grooves. The farther the bullet goes on its way to the muzzle, the tighter it gets. This accomplishes two things: You get an excellent gas seal, and fouling from the previous shot gets "squeegeed" out the muzzle. A patched round ball, on the other hand, pushes fouling down into the breech every time you load. Every blackpowder rifle will eventually get an accumulation of fouling that requires wiping, but you get a lot more shots in between wipes with a properly fitted Minie bullet.

I think @dave951 is on to something, and I am interested in seeing how this develops. Kids who shoot muzzleloaders need to know about patched round balls, but they want activity (shooting... Lots of shots, with minimal delays in between) and it needs to be kept simple, both for safety and to keep their interest in group situations like this.

Regarding the original question about bore sizes and groove depth, I think the best plan might be to select a few of the most frequently encountered .50 caliber rifle models and check with the manufacturers for bore specifications. It may be an engineering challenge to come up with a one-size-fits-all hollow-based Minie bullet in .50 caliber, although I believe Lyman has already attempted to do so. We should take another look at the moulds they have available. I don't know how much consistency there will be among the actual rifles, but we'll see what @dave951 's inquiry turns up.

Best regards,

Notchy Bob
 

oldwood

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A local sportsmen's club in this area did a youth participation in muzzleloading program 18 yrs. ago. They focus of the program was to allow kids to fire a muzzleloading gun for the first time , and show them by example how the system works. To say the program was a success is an under statement. Each youngster was allowed to fire a few shots with an adult loader and instructor managing the safety , loading and teaching. There were 10 firing stations , targets were 10 yds. distance , w/ loose fitting pre -lubed patch -ball loads . Can't remember , but I think powder charge was around 10gr. FFFG black powder. There were so many adults , and their kids showed up , we were amazed. One surprise for me , was the number of mom's and kids that came w/o a male presence in their home. Time well spent far as I'm concerned. .....................oldwood
 

dave951

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A local sportsmen's club in this area did a youth participation in muzzleloading program 18 yrs. ago. They focus of the program was to allow kids to fire a muzzleloading gun for the first time , and show them by example how the system works. To say the program was a success is an under statement. Each youngster was allowed to fire a few shots with an adult loader and instructor managing the safety , loading and teaching. There were 10 firing stations , targets were 10 yds. distance , w/ loose fitting pre -lubed patch -ball loads . Can't remember , but I think powder charge was around 10gr. FFFG black powder. There were so many adults , and their kids showed up , we were amazed. One surprise for me , was the number of mom's and kids that came w/o a male presence in their home. Time well spent far as I'm concerned. .....................oldwood
Have you seen the threads I've posted about working with kids? Been at it for a while. We're preparing a class to get the first level of instruction done for adults and we have an invite to do a day long session for about 500 kids. Yeah, what we're doing is very popular now that folks are finding out about it.
 

Notchy Bob

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Track of the Wolf (TOW) carries a .50 caliber hollow-based Mine bullet:

1628165405231.png


You can't tell much from the picture, but they describe it as "50 caliber, Minie, hand cast pure lead, hollow base." Oddly, they don't show the weight. TOW is normally pretty good about showing details, but this one slipped past the goalie.

I'm sure Lyman made a mould for this bullet at one time, but I can't find the reference in any of the resources I have near at hand. Lee still makes two .50 caliber hollow based Minie moulds, one a 360 grain bullet in fairly traditional configuration, and one "trash can" shaped in 354 grain.

Maybe buy a few pre-cast bullets from TOW and try them in a couple of generic .50 caliber rifles?

This harks back to the early days of the Civil War, when Ordnance Departments were trying to establish some uniformity in small-arms ammunition for a variety of guns...

Notchy Bob
 

Grenadier1758

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I would think the lightest REAL, 250 grain in 50 Caliber, would be the bullet of choice. It should be sized for easy loading or use very soft lead for easy loading.
 
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