New Fowler Shooter

Muzzleloading Forum

Help Support Muzzleloading Forum:

Joined
May 26, 2022
Messages
156
Reaction score
206
Location
Bristol, Tennessee, USA
I'm no fowler expert. I'm no reenactor or PC stickler, either. I ordered, very patiently waited for, received, and am quite pleased with an Indian made "New England Fowler" that has what appears to me to be a 1717 French musket stock with the front extended for a 51" long "69 caliber" barrel (mine mics at .677" or 15 bore), a musket dog lock with "I. COOKSON" stamped into the plate (which I'd happily do without, it not being a very precise replica), and brass fittings with a serpent side plate. By the method of weighing myself and then while holding it, it weighs 9.2 pounds. Not a skinny minny, and it's long! Center of gravity is right where my left hand grips the front of the forend. I haven't tried firing at birds or clays in flight. I expect it will be slow swinging, but it ought to help with sustaining the swing. I just plink with it so far. I load it as a 16 gauge shotgun, with a 1 ounce dipper of birdshot, the same dipper full (about 2 1/2 drams) of Jack's Powder Keg #4 Small Cannon Powder (Goex 4FA, a.k.a. "1.5FG"), an 18mm punched card over powder, the same dipper full of sawdust as filler wad, another card, the shot, and another card over shot. Works best to assemble the load in the muzzle with a short starter and ram it all down. Pattern density at 25 yards with 7 1/2 shot looks pretty good for a cylinder bore. I haven't done formal patterning. I also shoot 1 ounce balls with the same 18mm cards over powder and on top, a dipper of sawdust under the ball to cushion it, another on top of the ball to separate it from the top wad. I don't patch the ball. With these loads, not yet chronographed, recoil is negligible and ballistic effects seem about as powerful as a standard 16 or 20 gauge with 2 1/2 dram rating and 1 ounce of shot. It is a hoot to shoot!

It is a bit long for carrying. My 2014 Dodge Challenger's back seats quickly and easily fold down, and it slides right in.

My method of wadding with the card over powder and sawdust filler is something I thought of when loading musket balls with black powder into brass cases for unmentionable guns. I reasoned that it would transition the force from the flat over powder wad to the base of the ball evenly, "cupping" it to prevent distortion. There's nothing new under the sun. I searched W.W. Greener's "The Gun" and found that some Italian had patented oiled sawdust as a filler wad in "unmentionable" shotgun cartridges ~1860 or so. I use it dry. It shoots well and seems to scrub fouling out of the bore. The reason I put more sawdust over the ball to separate the top card from it is that Greener strongly warned in his book to never put any card or wad over a ball as it would result in burst barrels. He was writing about "unmentionable" guns loaded from the rear end, and the only way I can reason that happening is if the card tilted going into the forcing cone it could be pinched between the side of the ball and bore, making a too-tight fit as it goes on down the cone into the bore. That shouldn't generally be a problem with a muzzleloader with a straight bore, no forcing cone, but all I lose by doing it this way is a dipper of sawdust. In the unmentionable loads, I glue the ball in without a card.
 
Joined
May 26, 2022
Messages
156
Reaction score
206
Location
Bristol, Tennessee, USA
2agIzRaW-110660746.jpeg
20210726_192840.jpg
20210726_192959.jpg
 
Joined
Aug 26, 2018
Messages
1,083
Reaction score
1,155
@SlidePicker

Please check out Mike Beliveau's way of loading a smoothbore using paper and/or tow. He has a youtube channel. Also check out the SkyChief load (search on this forum). Then check out this fellows website. He used to be a member here till the jerks ran him off. He has a smoothbore section on his website. Black Powder Notebook

These 3 will be useful to you.

edit- although you have a cylinder bore, with some experimentation with the above mentioned resources you can really improve the range and pattern of the smoothbore
 
Joined
May 26, 2022
Messages
156
Reaction score
206
Location
Bristol, Tennessee, USA
@SlidePicker

Please check out Mike Beliveau's way of loading a smoothbore using paper and/or tow. He has a youtube channel. Also check out the SkyChief load (search on this forum). Then check out this fellows website. He used to be a member here till the jerks ran him off. He has a smoothbore section on his website. Black Powder Notebook

These 3 will be useful to you.

edit- although you have a cylinder bore, with some experimentation with the above mentioned resources you can really improve the range and pattern of the smoothbore
Thanks!
 

Latest posts

Top