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Powder Weight vs volume? New to purcussion.

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Bo0tz

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I have purchased a traditions .50 mountain rifle and after reading through some posts I have decided on patched round ball for michigan deer hunting. I am shooting pyrodex with a .49 roundball and 0.18 pre lubed patch. I am getting excellent accuracy (based on my limited experience) at 50 yards with what I am gonna call a 1 inch to 1 1/4 inch groups

Now to my question. I have heard back and forth between volume measuring powder and weight measuring using a scale. Does this really matter in any way other than possibly over charging?
I am currently shooting 75 grains wieghed out on scale of pyrodex. I put it into cheap BP plastic tubes to keep measured charges with me and they show between 95-100 grains of volume. I don't trust the accuracy of the tube measurements but would this be any risk of being over charged?
 

Griz44Mag

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I have purchased a traditions .50 mountain rifle and after reading through some posts I have decided on patched round ball for michigan deer hunting. I am shooting pyrodex with a .49 roundball and 0.18 pre lubed patch. I am getting excellent accuracy (based on my limited experience) at 50 yards with what I am gonna call a 1 inch to 1 1/4 inch groups

Now to my question. I have heard back and forth between volume measuring powder and weight measuring using a scale. Does this really matter in any way other than possibly over charging?
I am currently shooting 75 grains weighed out on scale of pyrodex. I put it into cheap BP plastic tubes to keep measured charges with me and they show between 95-100 grains of volume. I don't trust the accuracy of the tube measurements but would this be any risk of being over charged?
Yes, that could be a risk.
Black powder and all substitutes are created to be measured with a volume device.
Density of powders changes - some dramatically - with type and even granulation.
Black powder substitutes are especially dangerous to measure by weight, they can vary widely. A dangerous overcharge could occur.
If you don't already have one, an adjustable powder measure is relatively inexpensive.
 

SDSmlf

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I have purchased a traditions .50 mountain rifle and after reading through some posts I have decided on patched round ball for michigan deer hunting. I am shooting pyrodex with a .49 roundball and 0.18 pre lubed patch. I am getting excellent accuracy (based on my limited experience) at 50 yards with what I am gonna call a 1 inch to 1 1/4 inch groups

Now to my question. I have heard back and forth between volume measuring powder and weight measuring using a scale. Does this really matter in any way other than possibly over charging?
I am currently shooting 75 grains wieghed out on scale of pyrodex. I put it into cheap BP plastic tubes to keep measured charges with me and they show between 95-100 grains of volume. I don't trust the accuracy of the tube measurements but would this be any risk of being over charged?
Both methods are ‘correct’. Pyrodex is approximately 30% less dense than blackpowder. Your 75 grain by weight load of Pyrodex is the equivalent of a 97.5 grain load of blackpowder (75x1.3=97.5). Substitute powders are to be measured by VOLUME not weight, unless you reduce your charge by difference in density. Please read the instructions for Pyrodex. Photograph from the label on Pyrodex RS container.
1602957206986.jpeg
 
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Zonie

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Pyrodex weighs about 30 percent less than real black powder. That means your 75 grain Pyrodex powder load has a volume that is equal to about 97.5 grains of real black powder.

The scale on your plastic tubes are showing what the volume of black powder will weigh. That is why it is showing 95-100 grains.

Pyrodex is meant to be measured by volume, not by actual weight.
Not that anyone would use this amount but, one cubic inch of Pyrodex has roughly the same amount of power as one cubic inch of real black powder.

If you have been loading the amount of Pyrodex you say you are, you are shooting the equivalent of a 100 grain powder charge.

(You beat me to it SDSmlf. :thumb: )
 

Bo0tz

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Pyrodex weighs about 30 percent less than real black powder. That means your 75 grain Pyrodex powder load has a volume that is equal to about 97.5 grains of real black powder.

The scale on your plastic tubes are showing what the volume of black powder will weigh. That is why it is showing 95-100 grains.

Pyrodex is meant to be measured by volume, not by actual weight.
Not that anyone would use this amount but, one cubic inch of Pyrodex has roughly the same amount of power as one cubic inch of real black powder.

If you have been loading the amount of Pyrodex you say you are, you are shooting the equivalent of a 100 grain powder charge.

(You beat me to it SDSmlf. :thumb: )
Would 100g still be in spec. I would like to keep this load so if its still in the safe range I should be good to go right?
 

SDSmlf

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Would 100g still be in spec. I would like to keep this load so if its still in the safe range I should be good to go right?
100 grains by volume of 2F blackpowder or Pyrodex RS is towards the high end of many manufacturer’s max load for a 50 caliber round ball in a 15/16” barrel. TC for example I know shows 110 grains. Suggest you follow what Traditions shows in their manual. Personally, if accurate, I would feel safe using the load, but that is me I’m my gun.
 
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Zonie

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I don't know what Traditions says about powder loads for your gun but Thompson Center says 110 grains of 2Fg powder is the maximum for the Hawken shooting a patched round ball.

The Lyman BLACK POWDER HANDBOOK & LOADING MANUAL, says a .50 caliber barrel with a 1:48 twist, shooting a patched roundball, they tested with a 100 grain (by volume) load of Pyrodex RS gave a breech pressure of 10,200 psi. IMO, that's about as high as I would want to go if I was shooting your Traditions rifle.
 

tenngun

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In a 28” barrel a 70 grain by volume charge gives about 1550- 1600 fps at the muzzle.
a 100 grain charge about 1850-1900 fps. 300 fps more.
However at 50 yards 1600 fps slows to1192, while 1900 fps slows to 1425, you still get a extra kick. At a hundred yards it’s 956 vs1075. Not much of a bigger bang for the buck( no pun intended ).
At 800 fps a ball will go through most deer. It for sure will create a killing wound.
Shooting round ball the extra for a big charge rarely pays off. Look for your best group
 

Bo0tz

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100 grains by volume of 2F blackpowder or Pyrodex RS is towards the high end of many manufacturer’s max load for a 50 caliber round ball in a 15/16” barrel. TC for example I know shows 110 grains. Suggest you follow what Traditions shows in their manual. Personally, if accurate, I would use the load, but that is me I’m my gun.
Im shooting a 32 inch barrel with 1/48 twist manual shows max load with pyrodex rs as 110 grains. So 97.5g should be safe. Hopefully i get a chance at a deer with it this year. Thanks for the input
 

Bo0tz

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In a 28” barrel a 70 grain by volume charge gives about 1550- 1600 fps at the muzzle.
a 100 grain charge about 1850-1900 fps. 300 fps more.
However at 50 yards 1600 fps slows to1192, while 1900 fps slows to 1425, you still get a extra kick. At a hundred yards it’s 956 vs1075. Not much of a bigger bang for the buck( no pun intended ).
At 800 fps a ball will go through most deer. It for sure will create a killing wound.
Shooting round ball the extra for a big charge rarely pays off. Look for your best group
Makes sense that round ball will lose velocity like that. I would drop down the charge if I wasn't already sighted in for it and holding a good group. I wouldn't shoot 100 yards unless I had perfect conditions...even then I won't this year till I get a bit better at free hand shots.

Any expansion on these round balls? I get yes and no depending on where i look
 

tenngun

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I’ve had them pass through between ribs with exit wound not much bigger then entrance wound.
I’ve had them hit ribs and make big exit wounds. Shot a spine at about fifteen yards. Shattered the spine, and could easily stick three fingers in to wound.
 

Bo0tz

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I’ve had them pass through between ribs with exit wound not much bigger then entrance wound.
I’ve had them hit ribs and make big exit wounds. Shot a spine at about fifteen yards. Shattered the spine, and could easily stick three fingers in to wound.
Ok so no expansion unless bone is what I'm taking from it. Don't matter a .50 hole is plenty. Thanks im hoping for chance to test that.
 

Griz44Mag

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Ok so no expansion unless bone is what I'm taking from it. Don't matter a .50 hole is plenty. Thanks im hoping for chance to test that.
I have no idea just how much expansion there really is. I have never found one of my balls that went through a deer, and have never had one that did not make a hole going in and a hole going out. Deer may run, but don't run more than a few dozen yards when both lungs are ventilated from the sides.... even less when there is no heart still functioning.
 

tenngun

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A would say little instead of none. But there ain’t much of kill zone with out a bone in the way. And it can pancake on a bone
 

mooman76

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I say it's safe as long as you do the calculations correctly. As long as you use the volume meter though, you will get the same results but it's your choice. Have you tried measuring by volume to see if you get the same results?
 

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Remember that black powder burns much slower than modern smokeless powder. While could probably fill up the barrel to the muzzle, it won't result in a proportional increase in pressure, because most of the powder will be blown out upon firing. While I use about 95 grains in my .54, more would be wasted while accuracy drops off. You have a load that works for you, and that is all you need.
 

Bo0tz

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I say it's safe as long as you do the calculations correctly. As long as you use the volume meter though, you will get the same results but it's your choice. Have you tried measuring by volume to see if you get the same results?
In my theory it shouldn't matter same weight of 75 grains should equal 97.5 grains volume every time as well. I tried just going off the volume in the tube to match the ones I weighed out and still good results just kept it between 95 and 100. I was able to hit a 8 inch plate at 100 yard s 10 out of 10 shots so I should be well with in enough accuracy of deer. Not gonna shoot past 75 though, don't see much reason to push the limit.
 

Bo0tz

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In my theory it shouldn't matter same weight of 75 grains should equal 97.5 grains volume every time as well. I tried just going off the volume in the tube to match the ones I weighed out and still good results just kept it between 95 and 100. I was able to hit a 8 inch plate at 100 yard s 10 out of 10 shots so I should be well with in enough accuracy of deer. Not gonna shoot past 75 though, don't see much reason to push the limit.
So I may just get a volume measuring and keep it just under 100
 

Griz44Mag

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So I may just get a volume measuring and keep it just under 100
That would be much safer - it takes a bit of re-orientation to go from weighing powder to measuring powder, but when you do, it will not make any difference what powder you use, real black or any synthetic will measure exactly the same and have the same amount of power in the shot. With weighing black powder you will be all over the chart when you change products.
 
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