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jdw276

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Ok, shooting 75 grains olde eynesforth, patches lube stumpy moose juice formula. .0015 or so size. Found some beginning of range session but as session went on deteriorated to where I could not find them at all or were just a shredded mess of threads. During the session as it went on, trying to locate the patches thought to try an extra patch as over powder wad. Found everyone of the over powder wads in reusable shape. Extra note on the over powder wad, i had used them to swab a bit so were very dirty and pretty moist. But could not find any patches on the last 8 shots or so. Part of problem was not enough lube but how can i find the over powder patch but not the ball patch? New rifle tip curtis and a new to me tvm. Both 50 cal. Yea i know, i almost have reached nervana with one of each!
 

hanshi

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The patches will usually be about 15 yards (+ or -) from the muzzle. If there is any wind at all, the patches will be down wind. Sometimes they're just hard to find especially if they are blackened at all.
 

Stumpkiller

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Yep. 10 to 5 yards. Puckered up, blackened and very hard to see. Often to one side (mine tend to go left as I recall).
 

tenngun

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It’s well known that black powder opens up a door to other multiverses dimensions. Some times our patches go elsewhere. I know at least 90% of my patches disappears.;)
Shooting over snow or sand helps a lot, I’ve put down a few plastic painters tarps to catch some.
Bring your wife or daughter to your range. Women see more colors and more shades of color then men can. My wife is a lot better finding them then I am.
 

azmntman

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I found several last time out shooting and I reused em. NOTE reused patch groups opened up 6-8". Re used patches found still looked good. No clue why?

Have not done it yet but read here year or so ago a fellow dyed his pink so he could see em. Overkill IMHO but find em he dido_O
 

Grenadier1758

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I am assuming that your patch thickness is really 0.015" thick, otherwise such very thin patches would burn up in the blow by.

You didn't say how new the rifle is or the maker, caliber, depth of rifling and rate of twist.

Your symptoms are consistent with a new barrel with sharp rifling and a sharp crown. A few minutes with emory paper and your thumb will ease the crown a bit at the muzzle. I recommend reducing the size of the ball by 0.005" and increasing the patch thickness to 0.020".
 

Dr5x

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WITH ALL THAT LAUNDRY YOU ARE FIRING ALONG WITH A ROUND BALL I WONDER WHAT KIND OF GROUPS YOU ARE GETTING.

THE DISAPPEARING USED PATCHES MAY BE GETTING BURNED UP IN THE HELL FIRE OF THE EXPLOSION.

THIS WOULD INDICATE THEY ARE WAY TOO THIN TO DO THE JOB.

UNRIL YOU FIRE OR WATCH SOMEONE ELSE FIRE YOUR RIFLE AFTER DARK WILL YOU HAVE ANY UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT HAPPENS, THERE IS AN ENORMOUSE FLAME GOING ABOUT 6 FEET OUT OF YOUR BARREL THAT COULD WELL BURN UP ANY LOOSE CLOTH CAUGHT UP IN THE MIDDLE OF IT.

DUTCH SCHOULTZ



Ok, shooting 75 grains olde eynesforth, patches lube stumpy moose juice formula. .0015 or so size. Found some beginning of range session but as session went on deteriorated to where I could not find them at all or were just a shredded mess of threads. During the session as it went on, trying to locate the patches thought to try an extra patch as over powder wad. Found everyone of the over powder wads in reusable shape. Extra note on the over powder wad, i had used them to swab a bit so were very dirty and pretty moist. But could not find any patches on the last 8 shots or so. Part of problem was not enough lube but how can i find the over powder patch but not the ball patch? New rifle tip curtis and a new to me tvm. Both 50 cal. Yea i know, i almost have reached nervana with one of each!
 

hanshi

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Azmntman, I'm frugal, too. But I've reused patches now and then just to see what would happen. Couldn't tell any difference; but then, shooting a rifle at the range gets me rough comments such as; "good birdshot pattern". Sometimes I just tell them that I'm blind. o_O
 

Stumpkiller

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I don't re-use them but I do check them to see what's going on. But, for the most part, the target tells you whether it's good or not. I've watched guys banging away to seat a load and I wonder how damaged the patch was before the shot. So I also check the patch on pulled balls up against the light.
 

Eric Krewson

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I had the same problem, smoothing the crown and 15 passes with an oily green scotch bright pad fixed the blown patches problem.

To see if it is your crown, start a ball, run it down the bore than pull it to see if the patch is cut. My rifle was cutting holes in them at the bore.
 

Noah Hathorne

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Ok, shooting 75 grains olde eynesforth, patches lube stumpy moose juice formula. .0015 or so size. Found some beginning of range session but as session went on deteriorated to where I could not find them at all or were just a shredded mess of threads. During the session as it went on, trying to locate the patches thought to try an extra patch as over powder wad. Found everyone of the over powder wads in reusable shape. Extra note on the over powder wad, i had used them to swab a bit so were very dirty and pretty moist. But could not find any patches on the last 8 shots or so. Part of problem was not enough lube but how can i find the over powder patch but not the ball patch? New rifle tip curtis and a new to me tvm. Both 50 cal. Yea i know, i almost have reached nervana with one of each!
I just started having this problem with a Lyman Great Plains Percussion rifle in .50 caliber. The barrel has a 1-32" twist for conical bullets. I started shooting patched round balls and backed the charge down to 30 grains or so to "slow" things down because accuracy was suffering. The patch doesn't come apart, only the center gets blown out with the reduced charge. Accuracy surprisingly improved. When shooting 65-70 grains I'm lucky to find any patch remains at all, and the rifle won't group. I did find some tatters, so I know the patches are being destroyed. This lead me to put some paper wading between the patched ball and the charge. The patch and the paper come out intact. The patch does have some small abraiding where the rifling contacts it.
One thing I also noticed is that when I clean the rifle and swab a wet piece of cloth up and down the bore a few times on a jag, the patch or cloth gets cut in a couple places where it contacts the rifling. What I think is happening is that the rifling is cutting the patch which weakens it so that it blows out. The fast twist makes it worse.
This has never happened to me before when shooting rifles with a slow more traditional twist like 1-60 or 1-70 twist. Even when the patch shows signs of being abraided or cut. I have used both a .480 and .490 ball with a wonder lubed .015 pillow ticking patch. Both loads result in the same patch condition so I know it isn't a loose ball fit issue caused by blow by as the Lyman Black Powder Handbook states. That doesn't seem like a logical thing anyway after having dry paper wading come out intact and unburned! I intend to experiment some more because this is pretty interesting albeit frustrating. I'll probably end up having to lap the bore or dull the rifling down some.
 

Grimord

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I would try seating a ball, and then blowing it out with CO2 or pull the ball to see if you are getting the patch cutting. You could have some sharp lands down by the breech. You didn't notice this before, because the area in the breech was used for the larger powder charge. If you have the patch cutting after pulling or blowing out the patched ball, I would suggest lapping that area of the breech with some JB pore paste or even a green scotch brite patch
 

Bent Sight

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My Thompson Center Hawken .45 caliber and CVA .45 caliber send patches about 15-25 feet down range and they are easy to find.

I have two barrels for my Thompson Center Renegade .50 caliber. Whenever I fire rounds out of the 1:66 twist barrel, I find patches. I've fired 200 rounds out of the OEM 1:48 twist barrel and I've never found a patch. The 1:48 barrel will shoot groups under 2" at 50 meters.
 

Noah Hathorne

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I started getting ready to lap the bore on my rifle because of the patch cutting. It's usually only noticeable after a couple of strokes back and forth, although after only putting the patch down and back once, you can see abrasions. Anyway, before casting a lap, I decided to use a cleaning patch with some lapping compound on it driven by a jag and the results were telling. You can see why the patch is getting blown out in the middle. You can see where the grooves are vs the lands and that the cutting is taking place on the edges of the lands.
IMG_2383.JPG
I'll post pictures of the bores of some of my muzzle loaders that I took with a bore cam. You can see the machine marks that are perpendicular to the bore on the lands and the marks in the grooves are going parallel. If you think about it, this is like a microscopic serrated blade on the lands rubbing against the patch. I'll also post pictures of the bores after lapping to show the difference. At minimum it should get rid of the serrated edge. Hopefully it doesn't sharpen it too much!
 

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Noah Hathorne

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My Thompson Center Hawken .45 caliber and CVA .45 caliber send patches about 15-25 feet down range and they are easy to find.

I have two barrels for my Thompson Center Renegade .50 caliber. Whenever I fire rounds out of the 1:66 twist barrel, I find patches. I've fired 200 rounds out of the OEM 1:48 twist barrel and I've never found a patch. The 1:48 barrel will shoot groups under 2" at 50 meters.
That is interesting. I'll bet the faster twist helps eat the patches. My Great Plains is a 1-32". I've never had this problem to this degree with round ball twists. Can you see machine marks on the lands running across perpendicular to the bore?
 

Bent Sight

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That is interesting. I'll bet the faster twist helps eat the patches. My Great Plains is a 1-32". I've never had this problem to this degree with round ball twists. Can you see machine marks on the lands running across perpendicular to the bore?

I don't see any machine marks on the lands or grooves. Both are shiny without signs of defects.
 

RHensley

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From the looks of the patch shown I would guess the bore has some build up in it. I had the same problem with my 54 when I used bore butter lube . The barrel must have had a little oil in it and a build up happened. I ended up cleaning the bore with gasoline and a wire brush then a really good cleaning with hot soapy water. Since then I use lambs tallow for lube. Haven't had that problem since. When I'm looking for the patch after shooting I try to find a place that the ground is completely clean. Way out in the sticks. For me that's not hard for my nearist naber is over a mile away. I shoot (alway in a safe direction) down the clean area. Then recover the patch. In the years since 72 I've used many different lubes. I've found the natural lubes work the best for me. I might add that now I've started making my own tallow from the white tale deer I've taken. That seems to work rather well also. I also use bed ticking for patch material. The bed ticking has two different sides. one smoth and the other not quite as smooth. I try to use the smooth side down and the not so smooth next to the ball.
 

RHensley

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I just started having this problem with a Lyman Great Plains Percussion rifle in .50 caliber. The barrel has a 1-32" twist for conical bullets. I started shooting patched round balls and backed the charge down to 30 grains or so to "slow" things down because accuracy was suffering. The patch doesn't come apart, only the center gets blown out with the reduced charge. Accuracy surprisingly improved. When shooting 65-70 grains I'm lucky to find any patch remains at all, and the rifle won't group. I did find some tatters, so I know the patches are being destroyed. This lead me to put some paper wading between the patched ball and the charge. The patch and the paper come out intact. The patch does have some small abraiding where the rifling contacts it.
One thing I also noticed is that when I clean the rifle and swab a wet piece of cloth up and down the bore a few times on a jag, the patch or cloth gets cut in a couple places where it contacts the rifling. What I think is happening is that the rifling is cutting the patch which weakens it so that it blows out. The fast twist makes it worse.
This has never happened to me before when shooting rifles with a slow more traditional twist like 1-60 or 1-70 twist. Even when the patch shows signs of being abraided or cut. I have used both a .480 and .490 ball with a wonder lubed .015 pillow ticking patch. Both loads result in the same patch condition so I know it isn't a loose ball fit issue caused by blow by as the Lyman Black Powder Handbook states. That doesn't seem like a logical thing anyway after having dry paper wading come out intact and unburned! I intend to experiment some more because this is pretty interesting albeit frustrating. I'll probably end up having to lap the bore or dull the rifling down some.
The 1 in 32 is basicly for the conical bullet and in 50 caliber anything from 1 in 66 to 1 in 70 works best. Back years ago the Douglas barrels in 50 and 54 was 1 in 66. The rifleing could be stripping the patch as it trys to give it the revs. needed .
 

RHensley

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I don't re-use them but I do check them to see what's going on. But, for the most part, the target tells you whether it's good or not. I've watched guys banging away to seat a load and I wonder how damaged the patch was before the shot. So I also check the patch on pulled balls up against the light.
Round balls are suppose to be lead. Lead is soft so the more you beat it with the ram rod the more it's damaged and possible want fly right. If you have to beat the ball down then the barrel needs to be cleaned or the patch lube ball combination is wrong. Just a thought.
 

Bent Sight

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Round balls are suppose to be lead. Lead is soft so the more you beat it with the ram rod the more it's damaged and possible want fly right. If you have to beat the ball down then the barrel needs to be cleaned or the patch lube ball combination is wrong. Just a thought.
I recently purchased a Thompson Center Hawken in .45 caliber. I have to start the .440" round lead ball and 0.015" compressed patch with a small piece of wood and hammer, then a piece of wood dowel and hammer to drive it a few inches down the barrel. After that it's easy to push down the barrel with the ramrod. This happens with patches treated with Ballistol, pure Murphy's Oil Soap and store bought pre-treated CVA, Thompson and Ox Yoke patches.

The load with the hammered in round ball and 0.015" compressed patches treated with Ballistol shoots sub 2" groups at 50 meters; sometimes all 5 shots are touching. At 100 yards the round ball load will shoot 4" or better groups. I tried going with a thinner 0.012" compressed patch and 50 meter groups more than doubled, closer to tripled.

My ball starter will leave a small ring on the face of the round ball in all of the three muzzle loaders I own, even if I start it with the palm of my hand. I'd like to be able to start the ball without marking the front and shoot good groups. It's still work in progress.

Got any suggestions?
 

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