Powder charge for a Pedersoli .62 cal. Indian Trade Musket

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toupiny

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Hello to all,

I own a Pedersoli Indian Trade Musket and the manufacturer's recommanded maximum powder charge for it is 80 grains of FFG. I find this charge light when shooting bird shots: what are you guys using? Thanks
 
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I don’t know much about birdshot loads but for round ball many find a heavy charge, up to 110-120 grains, to group best.
 

toupiny

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What about that manufacturer's maximum load: is this a cover your butt kind of limit?
 

NorthFork

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Pedersoli factory load data is as follows

54 to 80 grains ffg with a .614" ball with a .010" patch

70 to 90 grains ffg with 1 ounce shot (plus necessary wads/cards)

Note these factory loads are based on Swiss powder which is slightly more energetic than Goex. I have had no problems killing small game with 65 to 70 grains powder (old DuPont ffg) and 1 1/8 ounce copper plated #6 with my Pedersoli Indian Trade Musket.
 

mushka

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I have a 62 cal smooth bore rifle and shot 70 gn 3fg behind a prb this morning. It is not a Pedersoli gun, it's a hand built gun.
 

NorthFork

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@toupiny PM a forum member by the handle of @Britsmoothy. He has a Ped Indian Trade Musket. He has worked extensively with it and is probably one the most experienced on the forum with this smoothbore. He's a good egg and will likely be able to answer some of your concerns about max load.
 

tenngun

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For shooting shot an old axiem is more shot less powder. 80 grains behind a shot load is near max. Try it with 60 or 70. Don’t be afraid of adding shot.11/4 to 1 1/2 ounce isn’t excessive.
 

Capnball

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I have a 62 cal smooth bore rifle and shot 70 gn 3fg behind a prb this morning. It is not a Pedersoli gun, it's a hand built gun.
I have an original .58 cal rifled musket and the 1860 armorer's recommendation for either a Minnie ball or round ball was 60 grains FFG. That was meant to drop a man at ranges in excess of 100 yards. It certainly does what I need it to do at those ranges on paper. I'm sure if I loaded bird shot and wads it would be pretty good on birds. I've seen what too powerful a change can do to a pheasant. It doesn't make any sense to destroy what you're aiming to put on the dinner table.
 

toupiny

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Thanks again for all the experience sharing: I said before, you guys are a well of knowledge!
 

Irishmusket

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Thanks again for all the experience sharing: I said before, you guys are a well of knowledge!
2 1/4 drams 2 ffg black powder NOT 3 fffg 7/8 oz of shot is the safe standard service load for 20 gauge trade gun .3 drams 2ffg one once of shot 16 gauge .You can get away with this load but it is pushing the musket to its maximum Recommended service load.I have been shooting muzzleloaders for over 50 years Been a successful gunsmith for 40 + years exclusive to black powder guns.I have seen muzzleloaders blowup believe or not you can pop em I have seen a TC Hawken 50 that burst seriously injuring the shooter why He loaded It twice blew the rifle in half never found the breech plug he was in the hospital. I have a Seen a Pedersoli 12 gauge double turned into a burst water pipe Shooting heavy loads 110 grains and a ounce and a half Shot with 3 fffg .Be aware Powder manufactures only recommend 3 fffg is for rifles under 50 cal Revolvers and pistols not a thin walled shot gun or musket barrel .Be safe out their kids
 

tenngun

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I don’t know.
Sam Falada tried to blow a rifle with God awful charges. I would have to look up to see the full charges listed but was in memory three hundred grains and five ball. And the gun held. Only by loading a ball off powder could he get a rupture.
Ted Kirkland got similar results when he attempted blowing a barrel.
I don’t think I would want to fire an 80 or 90 grain 2f/ 1oz charge in a gun I didn’t think could handle 110 grains 3f and 2oz shot.
Not seeing the guns you referenced I can’t opine on how they blew. But I would be concerned that it was a loose charge instead of too strong a charge that blew the gun.
Falada hunted Africa with a cut off Zouave style his company called carbine or buffalo hunter or some such. His charge was 110 grains 3f and a 600+ grain minnie. That’s close to an ounce and a half. And the Zouave barrel ain’t no big hog gun barrel. This was a gun that was made for a service charge of 60-65 grains 2f behind a one ounce minnie.
 

NorthFork

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So 61.52 grains of ffg and 7/8 oz is all that is considered safe?? Hmmmmmm.....I think I'll go with Pedersoli's recommendations. They made it, they ought to know.
 

tenngun

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Looked it up. Falada shot 500 grains 3f behind a 600 grain conical sans effect to the barrel as measured in points via micrometer along the barrel, 1” x 36” .58.
They repeated the test several times with multi projectiles up to three 600 grain conicals on top of 500 grains 3f with no change in barrel size.
He did not get a barrel to blow until he loaded two conicals one on the powder one fourteen inches off the charge.
Back when guns were made out of hand welded barrels proof houses put super big charges in those old guns and they held.
I wouldn’t try that my my gun, but I well feel safe using reasonable charges in my fusil barrels.
 

Irishmusket

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Looked it up. Falada shot 500 grains 3f behind a 600 grain conical sans effect to the barrel as measured in points via micrometer along the barrel, 1” x 36” .58.
They repeated the test several times with multi projectiles up to three 600 grain conicals on top of 500 grains 3f with no change in barrel size.
He did not get a barrel to blow until he loaded two conicals one on the powder one fourteen inches off the charge.
Back when guns were made out of hand welded barrels proof houses put super big charges in those old guns and they held.
I wouldn’t try that my my gun, but I well feel safe using reasonable charges in my fusil barrels.
The loads I quoted were from the Burmingham Prof house London england 2 & 1/2drams 2 ff and 7/&8 once of shot light load and heavy load max service load 2&3/4drams 2 ff and one once of shot.This is what is recommended to be the safe service load in my experience have found to useful in what is considered a light musket These loads shoot quite well out to 25 or 30 yards .
 
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