Broke into black powder yesterday.

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I apologize if some of this repeats what I posted in the new members introduction thread. I'm just kind of excited to be entering the world of black powder.

I do a fair amount of shooting and reload my own ammo, but I never shot any kind of muzzleloader. Lately I've been getting an itch to give that a try, so I've been doing a lot of research on the subject. I found that most people recommend starting out with a percussion gun but it seems to me that caps are about like primers for my modern guns - unavailable for the most part. Also after watching a series based during revolutionary war times I had an urge to get a flintlock.

Although I'd have liked to buy one that looked period correct both price and availability played a part in my decision to buy a Traditions Deerhunter flintlock as my first muzzleloader. Notice I said first as there will probably be others later. This is the one I bought:


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The gun arrived Sunday and I took it down and cleaned it as instructed in the manual. I set the flint and it seemed to be sparking good from what I could see. Yesterday I took it to the range for my very first time ever shooting any kind of muzzleloader. I double checked everything as I went through the loading procedure, primed the pan and pulled the hammer back to full cock. I was plenty nervous taking that first shot, but when I pulled the trigger the gun went boom and a hole appeared in the target. Wow, did that feel good!

The first shot was left of center, as was the next one. I didn't have a screwdriver small enough to adjust the sights with me so I just used some "Kentucky windage" and aimed a tad right on the next three shots, which were much better. Here's my target from those first five shots. I was only at 25 yards but I was happy with the results as I need to get used to the gun, especially that little delay between pulling the trigger and the shot going downrange.


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I then took a couple shots at 50 yards and while the group opened up they at least all hit the target.

I only had two misfires and after one of them I could see that the flint had come loose. After tightening it back down the second attempt fired. One other time the primer didn't ignite but the shot went off the second time it tried it. So all in all not too bad for my first time I don't think.

It's surely a different experience from firing modern firearms. Even the sound is much different. Instead of the sharp crack I'm used to this is more of a deep boom.

As I stood there loading up I could imagine myself getting ready to fight some redcoats. Then when I fired with all the smoke and sound it was very exciting. I loved it and think I'm hooked.
 

ord sgt

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The experience of black powder is unique and wonderful. My R/P club hosts a program for women. They get to try all types of firearms, along with safe handling instructions. Muzzle loading rifles are a part of the experience. Myself and another Range Officer instruct the ladies. We get instant feedback after they pull the trigger for the first time. Big smiles! After the event is over, the club president tells us that the women enjoyed the muzzle loaders more than all of the other firearms.
So, I know why you felt the way you did after your first time with black powder. :)
 
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It's a smelly, dirty sport but I love it. There's nothing like shooting a match with a flint when it's over your hands are all black and the side of your face is covered in black specks.
 

JohnnieT

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That’s a fine first rifle. Nothing fancy, but it will certainly get the job done. Good choice and good shooting!
 
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Warning, warning, Black Powder is highly addictive! Once you are addicted you realize the only treatment(There is no cure), is to get more black powder and shoot more.
 

Musketeer

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That's a great gun for a starter. Hooked breech with single wedge for ease of cleaning, synthetic rammer for strength, adjustable sights, etc. It lets you focus on shooting rather than having to figure out some of the maintenance concerns and physical limitations of truly traditional guns right off the bat and makes the transition from cartridge guns a bit less daunting. Nice shooting and congrats on jumping right in with a flintlock. 👍
 
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