How do you load your muzzleloader?

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Bill Bryan

40 Cal.
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I've never had any trouble loading my flintlock rifle holding it between my legs. My problem has been loading my flintlock pistol. I finally gave in years ago and built a loading stand. Bill
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Shooting from a bag I keep the bag and horn on my right side. Set to rifle on my left foot and hold it with my left hand right at the muzzle. I have long fingers so I can still use my left hand fingers to hold my measure while pouring powder with my right hand. Then place patch over muzzle and set ball with my right hand, hold with LH fingers while I start it, then gather patch material with LH, cut with RH, and seat ball. Sounds more difficult than it really is unless you have short stubby fingers!
 
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I always had to load the old/tough/awkward way in the woods and can still do that without spilling more than just a few balls and a couple measures of powder. I don't like placing the butt of the rifle on the bare ground and use my foot if necessary. All my shooting is now at a club range and rubber mats are available to protect the butt plate and benches to lean the barrel against.
I must admit that I modernized it, as I carry 2 or 3 speed loaders that are prepped with a round ball and a charge, And all I have to do is take the Off one end, pour the powder down the barrel and use my short starter to drive the ball on down. I place a felt separator between the powder and the ball So that the powder doesn't contaminate. If it's flintlock, I carry one of them handy dandy brass quick chargers around my neck, and if it's percussion, I carry a Ted cash brass capper around my neck. I do carry that possible sack with the Short starter, some powder and a few balls in case things get interesting. When I'm carrying the flintlock, I have a couple of spare flints and a little flint hammer. My pocket knife,( which is one of those handy dandy Swiss combos), Takes care of the odds and ends. Using these speed loaders, means I can operate with one hand supporting the barrel and using that same hand to guide the speed loader while the other hand does the rest.
Squint
 

ord sgt

.58 cal
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I have loaded my rifles from the bag and cartridge box. While at my R/P club, the long rifle leans against the shooting bench while I load from the bag. Woods walk is just a little different
 

rp77469

Pilgrim
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I don't have a local shooting club, but do shoot with a rendezvous club several times a year. All shoots are directly from the bag, regardless of the firearm.

For the local range (the only one in my area that has a few benches where you can still shoot off-hand) I have a V-notch board that clamps to the side of the shooting bench, and a board wrapped in old carpet to rest the butt on. The shooting range is a mix of concrete and weathered asphalt. The bottom board is mandatory unless you like to scratch your butt plate on concrete and weathered asphalt.
 

Johnny Tremain

Silversmith in training
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Dang my Virginia rifle has a 42 inch barrel, and my arms aint long enough to load sitting down.
I sting my heel to the toe of the rifle butt, that way both hands are free to load.
 
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Our club has benches with thick plywood tops. I made a U-shaped contraption with a notched board on top, and underneath is an eyebolt going through a captured nut so I can clamp it to the bench. I never lean my rifles against anything and hope for the best. I secure them.
 
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Our club has benches with thick plywood tops. I made a U-shaped contraption with a notched board on top, and underneath is an eyebolt going through a captured nut so I can clamp it to the bench. I never lean my rifles against anything and hope for the best. I secure them.

And what do you do when your out walking the woods with no support close?
 
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I prefer KISS like others here, and like others I don't like the butt on the ground (assfault, dirt, rocks, mud, snow) so I set it on foot.
I have shot at a few different public ranges, never had need on complicating it BUT out on public land I found tossing an old blanket on the ground helps, recently picked up a cheap saddle blanket and it works real well
 
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Butt rests on the ground ,or at the range , on a drink coaster on the concrete. Hunting buddy cuts out these flat , thick leather rings , w/hole big enough to fit over the muzzle of my rifle , and the ring , is attached w/ lanyard to my shooting bag strap. that leather gizmo holds the gun vertical w/both hands to load , or in my case , "dry ball" the rifle if I forget the powder. When loaded , flip the leather ring from the muzzle of the rifle and shoot. ....oldwood
 

nick_1

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Loading the pistol I have a cross draw holster that i reinforced with rivits. Butt of the pistol fits in the holster securely and hands free allowing me to pour powder and seat ball from ball block .
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