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Cattywompuss

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Who here always taps their prime charge out to the outer edge of the pan after closing the frizzen?

I generally do, based purely on advice and it always seems to answer quickly.
 

tenngun

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What keep it even as you walk or move about?
I like to knuckle the gun till it evens out but I don’t think it last that way between snapping the frozen shut and getting in to shooting postion.
 

Cattywompuss

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I find my lock times are faster when the pan powder is spread evenly across the pan. The more the powder is spread out the more places there are to catch the sparks and the closer the heat from the burning powder to the touch hole.
What I have heard anecdotally is that having powder right up on the touch hole increases the chance of a "fuse" effect. Again, anecdotally, this is bad because you want sparks to ignite the prime and have the flame reach the main charge. Thoughts?
 

Cattywompuss

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Pan approximately half filled and level for my fastest ignition.
Half filled? Really? I get super fast ignition with 1/3 or less filled, and bumped out to the right(right hand gun) side of the pan. Alibi: we have different guns with different locks/touch holes/powders and I'm not judging, just sharing what I do.
 

pmccoywss

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I do as cattywompuss does. Seems to work for me the past 46 years.
 

SDSmlf

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I find my lock times are faster when the pan powder is spread evenly across the pan. The more the powder is spread out the more places there are to catch the sparks and the closer the heat from the burning powder to the touch hole.
Curious how you measure the lock times? Do you have a setup similar to Larry Pletcher’s?
 
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hinamanra

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My touch hole is in the correct position so the prime cain't cover it. I do run a pick through the power charge before I prime and haven't had anything but instant ignition since. Once I close the frizzen I never think of it again.
 

smo

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I can’t see the pan real good, so I just push the primer plunger in that general direction, give it a couple of pumps , close the frizzen and let the chips fall were the may.... works for me.
 

Eric Krewson

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Extensive testing by Pletch showed the closer to the touchhole the prime was the faster the ignition. I have a bunch of flintlocks, some like the touch hole picked, some don't, all like about 1/3rd of a pan of prime evenly distributed, more caught sparks means a faster BOOM.

When I stared out the "fuse effect" old wives tail was rampant, it might be true with a small, long, drilled touchhole but is not applicable to a white lightning liner that has the main charge less than 1/16" from the prime. All my guns have coned liners, all but one are white lightning.
 

Grenadier1758

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Curious how you measure the lock times? Do you have a setup similar to Larry Pletcher’s?
It's not very scientific. It's more a feel of lock time and a sense of something happening between the sense that the hammer is falling and the smoke from the muzzle is obscuring the target. I also believe Larry Pletcher's studies.

As I was coming familiar I could distinguish between a clatch-delay-bang and clatchbang. The faster times were always with the prime spread all along the pan.

Yes, I read all the articles about using the bank the powder to the side of the pan away from the touch hole. I am also aware of the warning about a fuse effect. If the powder is below the touch hole, it's unlikely that there will be a fuse effect. The ball of flame from ignition is virtually the same whether the pan is full, half full or quarter full. I think it's better to have powder spread out so those dancing sparks have lots of places to find powder.

When hunting and carrying a charged pan, you won't be able to keep that perfectly level distribution of pan powder. A little extra powder covered by a tightly fitting frizzen to pan will help to keep powder distributed so sparks can start ignition.

Note: I pay no attention to pan powder distribution when loading the King's Musket. As I cast about, come to ready, present and fire, the powder in the pan is going to be wherever it is.
 

1861colt

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There was extensive testing done by Larry Pletcher of BlackPowder Mag in 2008 of a lot of subjects about flintlock ignition using 100's of shots in the testing, very scientifically performed down to 10,000th of a second.. Below is the link for the 6 different tests. The "Part 5: Timing Powder Location in Pan". Banking away from vent vs. up against vent. Away from vent is slower by 16% . The difference between .036 sec and .044 sec, are we humanly capable of telling the difference or is it merely perceived, not counting on intensities of sparks produced by each swing of the flint.. The tests he did rock the long believed results that one would expect to occur.
 

oldwood

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I really like the 3 gr. plunger priming nozzles. Muzzle loading shooting , accuracy , and performance is rooted in consistency of loading , components , and priming. To be consistent in priming , I use the same number of pushes on the priming nozzle to fill the pan of a given lock to about 3/4 volume , then doing what I've done for 40 yrs. , bump the powder to the touch hole side of the pan. Works for me , just tryin' to be consistent and accurate , with Instant ignition. .....................oldwood
 

beyu

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After closing the frizzen, I usually turn the musket to the side (lock side up) to move the priming powder closer to the vent. The pan is no more than half full.

Nothing scientific, I just do it because it seems like a good idea ... sparks and fires good, too.
 

Bob McBride

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I’ve found a larger internally coned touch hole, fine pan powder, a fast lock, and a properly hardened frizzen usually answer. When one of those are missing, I fiddle with it, as no two scenarios with one of those out of whack seem to prefer the same bandaid. Some like more powder, some less, some out, some level, etc. In those scenarios I usually look to a proper fix depending on the gun‘s application. I don’t mind slow ignition on my Smoothbore but can’t abide it on a rifle.
 
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3gr. plunger 1 drop 4 f looks like a fly took a dump in the pan, fast ignition no delay that I can see and works just fine, never been one too worry much once the frizzen is shut, if damp out will change the prime about every hour.
 
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