I don't like to use a ball starter.

Discussion in 'General Muzzleloading' started by WVAED, Feb 27, 2018.

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  1. Mar 1, 2018 #41

    Black Hand

    Black Hand

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    To me, the disadvantage is that a starter is an extra useless item. Why use two tools where one will do...?

    When I started, I used a starter. Then I found out that one wasn't necessary to load a gun and I stopped carrying one.
     
  2. Mar 1, 2018 #42

    Gene L

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    For me, a ramrod won't do to start a ball. If your rifle will accept a looser ball with acceptable accuracy, you're a winner. I simply cannot start a ball with a ramrod without more pressure and technique than I'm willing to use . That's down to me, I guess. But I'd rather take a few extra seconds for what I think it better accuracy, according to Dutch. I don't care how long it takes me to reload, and since I'm already carrying a horn, a pouch, a brush, a strip of patching, and whatever, a ball starter doesn't worry me at all.
     
  3. Mar 1, 2018 #43

    Black Hand

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    62 caliber barrel loaded with a 60 caliber ball and a ticking patch that is 0.015-017. Not exactly a "loose combination"...
     
  4. Mar 1, 2018 #44

    Gene L

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    Pretty loose. But if you're happy, then bless you.
     
  5. Mar 1, 2018 #45

    walks with gun

    walks with gun

    walks with gun

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    I'm with tenngun on this, as far as I know, the short starter came in about the end of the use of muzzloaders for the most part and mainly for heavy target rifles at that. Fun to make another range toy but not really traditional for many of us.
     
  6. Mar 1, 2018 #46

    Gene L

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    Traditional enough for me. Not that I worry about that.
     
  7. Mar 1, 2018 #47

    Archer 756

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    :surrender: It seems that the statement of having a coned muzzle just got blown off, it works no need for starter. :metoo:
     
  8. Mar 1, 2018 #48

    WVAED

    WVAED

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    I have a coned muzzle in a 54 and i do like it. My 50 is not coned. I may need to look into what it would take to cone it.
     
  9. Mar 1, 2018 #49

    Dr5x

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    The use of the short (ball) Starter is to extrude the soft lead ball wrapped in patching into the lands and grooves of the rifling
    This might not be as necessary if the rifle has very shallow, or button, rifling. The deeper the rifling the harder the whack of reshaping the lead ball to fit your rifling.


    I can't imagine loading a patched lead ball into deeper rifling without a short starter.
    If you are using a wooden ramrod, your chances of splitting it would be increased markedly. Having semi punctured my right hand twice with broker wood ram rods made me a believer of the steel rod./
    I understand that splitting the wood rod can easily be prevented by always grabbing the rod 8 to 10 inches from the muzzle and seating the ball with three or four short pushes,. But for some reason reason I would forget that arctic and suddenly I had a bloody palm on my right hand.

    If you can seat a ball without a short starter , Hooray, that's the way to go. I don't know how you could do it with a green pountain barrel.

    Dutch
     
  10. Mar 1, 2018 #50

    Black Hand

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    Unconed Rice barrel, no starter.

    And I will disagree - the patching engages both the surface of the ball and the rifling so the lead doesn't need to be "extruded" to fit the rifling. It appears to be an interference fit that allows the spin to be imparted to the ball via the patching. There is a slight deformation of the surface evidenced by the imprint of the weave onto the lead at the location of the lands.

    The point is that a rammer can be used to start and load a ball, you just choke down and push.
     
  11. Mar 1, 2018 #51

    coloradoclyde

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    I'd like to see two guys shoot "head to head" one using a starter...one not. For both speed and accuracy.

    I'll put my money on the guy with the starter. :grin:
     
  12. Mar 1, 2018 #52

    Black Hand

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    If the gun puts meat on the table, nothing else matters to me...
     
  13. Mar 1, 2018 #53

    Black Hand

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    Too many variables to be a truly accurate experiment.
     
  14. Mar 1, 2018 #54

    azmntman

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    :metoo:

     
  15. Mar 1, 2018 #55

    Elkeater

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    Come on over for a visit and step up Clyde, my money likes to multiply. Ben Lemond Gun Club. :wink:
     
  16. Mar 1, 2018 #56

    walks with gun

    walks with gun

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    I just try to shoot as traditional as possible, without short starters, bench to set 90 pound shooting box on, generator to hook up whatever pressure washing system is cool at the time and maybe even a wind sock. All these geegaws a person might as well shoot a inline.
     
  17. Mar 2, 2018 #57

    tenngun

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    Old rifles that I have seen had pretty deep rifeling. There are records that whacking the ball down with a knife handle then raming home with out a starter being mentioned.
    There are just some passing references to use of loading mallets, a stater by another name.
    I Think they were known historically, but I don’t use one at an historic event because I can’t prove it. I find it a PIA to load without one. But... I bet for every rifle gun shot I do today I shoot thirty fusil shots, all loaded sans starter.
     
  18. Mar 2, 2018 #58

    zimmerstutzen

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    Well Black hand, you have a point to an extent. In a Rice barrel with round cut .016 depth rifling, in 50 caliber, with a .495 ball, you would need a patch that is .0185 to fill the rifling. But where the lands are located, the ball and ball would need to be compressed to take the total thickness, from .532 down to the .500 bore. Compressing that patch and ball by over 3 hundredths of an inch is a lot of swaging to get the ball in there. Just simple math.
     
  19. Mar 6, 2018 #59

    Black Jaque Janaviac

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    I would prefer not to use a s starter. But some guns just need that tighter fit to perform well.

    One thing I have noticed is that the softness of the lead makes a big difference in starting. Anything but the purest lead will start tough.

    I have found that if you can liberate yourself from historical correctness, your own ingenuity can flourish. In my case, I use a thick ball-block to keep pre-patched balls. After pushing the ball onto the muzzle with the ramrod, I turn the 3/4-inch block on it's side and set the ball flush to the muzzle. My regular ramrod can finish the job from there.

    I have found a way to load and fire without ever removing gloves in the winter. This greatly increases the pleasure-factor to winter shooting. Adding another tool to the process increases the temptation to shed the gloves.
     
  20. Mar 6, 2018 #60

    Rifleman1776

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    Yes. And some of the old Jaegers had very deep rifling where a bare lead ball was hammered and rammed down filling the grooves with lead. That required a short starter and mallet.
     

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