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Loyalist Dave

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Welllll Gooollllleeeee Ser-jeant Major,

And all this time Ah just held a patched ball twixt my thumb and forefinger, held in a circle over the rifle muzzle, to show folks how to load a patched ball. That way Ah culd hold one side up showing cloth wuzn't what you wanted to see. Then while turning it over, Ah could show the shiny side was 'posed to go up.

Duz that loadin board gadget corn-fuze folks when you tell em it wasn't 'round in the period? FIVE holes for patched Balls? You do much squrrel huntin?

Wellll IIIII'llll beeee.....


(Folks, for those who don't know, we are a couple of old Gyrenes who raz each other every now and then. 😆 )

Gus
Well I could explain how time might rot away my fingers, but then they'd be more inclined to think I was contagious of something rather than paying attention to the wooden tool without moving parts that illustrates "they could've easily had it but apparently they didn't" lesson <shrug>

As for the number of shots, a lot of the shooting contests in which I participate are timed, and they give you up to 6 shots counting the best five.

I only need five

🤯

LD
 

Art Caputo

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I have been using a loading block(3-5 shots) for several years when deer hunting. I find them to be very fast, and much easier to handle in freezing temperatures. Follow up shots are rare, but I reload after the shot should the “dead” deer get up.
 

MtnMan

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I have been using a loading block(3-5 shots) for several years when deer hunting. I find them to be very fast, and much easier to handle in freezing temperatures. Follow up shots are rare, but I reload after the shot should the “dead” deer get up.

I'm reconsidering doing the same. The problem i'm having cutting patch material at the muzzle is finding the sprue on the ball. I bought 300 cast balls from October Country. They're nicely cast balls close in weight and size but have the smallest sprue i've seen. I can only see the sprue with my reading glasses. I can't do that in the field hunting and it's even a pain when practicing. It's much easier to do at home when loading loading blocks.

As small as the sprue is if it's not facing up I can't get it started in the bore. No matter how hard I smack the ball starter. Yes, I have to use a ball starter.
 
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I use them for hunting, easier re-loads and allows me to watch a downed deer better with the approach re-load, Just in case it decides to get up, never approach a what you think is a dead deer with a empty rifle.
 

MtnMan

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I just made up three 6 hole blocks. That should be enough to cover all my needs. I shoot a lot when I do woods walks and hunt coyotes.
 

longcruise

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I always carry a four or five ball block when hunting. It's very handy if you get into a skirmish with a covey of blue grouse. :)
 

Grenadier1758

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That one on the left is the one in Mark Baker's book where he states it is owned by a museum. I've heard folks say it was a fake but I've not seen any documentation to prove that LOL!
But even Mark hasn't found the documentation to prove the provenance of the loading board. Simply because it is in a museum, doesn't mean that it is the real thing. For many years the museum at the base of the St. Louis Arch had a display to celebrate the Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery. The rifle in prominent display was an Anthony Zoli reproduction of the 1803 Harper's Ferry Rifle. Easy enough to read the engraving on the barrel. They intended to show a representative rifle.
 

ADK Bigfoot

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I have made one or more for every rifle and smoothbore I own. I, too, reload immediately after a shot at a deer, even when I see it dead and down. I have three-hole and four-hole blocks for hunting, and up to twelve-hole blocks for running events like a primitive biathlon. Don't make the mistake of keeping them loaded; the lube will oxidize the lead and they get really stuck. I also have learned to make sure they are "finger tight" only.

ADK Bigfoot
 

MtnMan

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My persona is 1840-1860. MY Hawken fits in better and loading blocks have a better chance of being around at that time.

That's my story and i'm sticking to it. ;)
 

oldwood

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Loadin' boards is lots o' fun when your balls keep fallin' in the weeds. Them wayward patches sometimes blow away in a eager wind. When a feller hits 70 , a bullet board otta' be issued direct to him from those that know of them. All this palaverin' of Historical Korrect stuff needs modified for us old uns'.
 

MtnMan

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had the same problem with those tiny sprue's. i sat down to a good CD and dabbed each one with a black marker.

I thought of doing that. Although I doubt black would work with my eyesight. It would have to be a bright color. Somehow the loading block seems more appropriate.
 

deerstalkert

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i hold them with my left hand, drive the ball with a short starter, them lift the starter and board together and drop them in my bag or on top of the bench. that way they are always together when i need them. just making them is another part of the hobby.
 

MtnMan

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I might just use swaged balls and go back to cutting at the muzzle. No question it's how it was done back in the days. The loading blocks may be correct too but I know for sure cutting at the muzzle is correct. Then again back in the day all the balls had a sprue and needed to be put facing up. However, my option is to use swaged balls because of my failing vision or use balls with a sprue but use loading blocks.

I'm just thinking out loud. I guess the loading block would be more correct.
 
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