To Lube or Not to Lube - That is the question...

Discussion in 'Smoothbore' started by Enfield58, Mar 26, 2019.

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Do you use lubricant on cushion wads or leave them dry?

  1. Yes, I use my own recipe to lubricate the wads.

    21 vote(s)
    77.8%
  2. No, I don't use lubricant on the wads and shoot them dry.

    1 vote(s)
    3.7%
  3. I buy the wads already pre-lubricated.

    2 vote(s)
    7.4%
  4. Sometimes I shoot them dry and sometimes I shoot them lubricated.

    3 vote(s)
    11.1%
  1. Mar 26, 2019 #1

    Enfield58

    Enfield58

    Enfield58

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    Because I don't use shotguns I was researching the type of lubricant to use on cushion wads.

    Some other forums had some people posting messages stating that they don't lube the dry wads while others do with their own recipe.

    I didn't see much written about this subject. So what is the consensus?

    Do you use a lubricant on the cushion wad for a muzzle loading shot gun?

    Comments and/or lube recipes greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Mar 26, 2019 #2

    azmntman

    azmntman

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    Depends on the shot gun. They ALL like something DIFFERENT. Many here now use the "skycheif" method which is basically loading backwards (powder, over SHOT card, shot, sopping wet (olive oil etc) over POWDER wad. I actually loaded this way (less the lube) when I first got a BP shot gun cuz nobody told me how to load and thought the thickest wad would be needed to hold the shot in the barrel (and when order over powder/shot cards/wads from yer favorite vendor theres no instructions!). Worked good. Loaded the "correct way" with a 20 GA and pattern was riot gun like so will be trying skychiefs method soon.

    Gotta shoot it and let it speak its druthers
     
  3. Mar 26, 2019 #3

    Rat

    Rat

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    Sometimes I leave my musket loaded for long periods of time, like for a month and a half during turkey season, so I go light on the lube so as not to contaminate too much of the main charge, whilst waiting to get a shot. (over the length of the season) I just started experimenting with taking a wonder-wad, dropping it in hot melted bee's wax, (no lube, pure bee's wax) and then putting that over my powder, with a card wad underneath it, and a wonder wad (not waxed) over it. Don't have results yet, but in a black powder revolver, the wax wad, or "biscuit" does seem to get melted, and go somewhere...I assume it's lubing the bore to some extent. Plan to shoot some soon in both my musket and rifle. That probably does not answer your question!!!
     
  4. Mar 26, 2019 #4

    Juice Jaws

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    I use my own lube, ballistol cut with a little water.
     
  5. Mar 27, 2019 #5

    Sidney Smith

    Sidney Smith

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    I use phone book paper as wadding over the powder and shot. No lube at all.....Patterns just fine.
     
  6. Mar 27, 2019 #6

    Stumpkiller

    Stumpkiller

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    I lightly lube the edge of the cushion wad - rolled on edge (on a pin) in molten beeswax/tallow
     
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  7. Mar 27, 2019 #7

    Eutycus

    Eutycus

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    Which sort of gun are you interested in? Rifles or revolvers? And would it really matter?
     
  8. Mar 27, 2019 #8

    THBailey

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    I use Bore Butter. I fill an "Altoids" tin with the cushion wads, then melt the Bore Butter and pour it over the wads. Other times I use the wads dry. Frankly I have not noticed much of a difference.

    FWIW, when shooting at a clay pigeon event, during some hot and heavy shooting, I saw some of the competitors load their guns and spray a water/windex mix down the loaded barrels, then hold the guns muzzle down as they walked to the line.
     
  9. Mar 27, 2019 #9

    Brokennock

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    Depends on how you define "cushion wad" and where in the shot load it is going. If you mean the items sold as "cushion wads" made out of a hard fibrous material that most folks traditionally put under the shot load? I don't usually use them at all, but am planning to experiment with them heavily soaked in olive or refined coconut oil,,,, but,, on top of the entire load ala the "Skychief special" load.
    I do place a lubed (beeswax, olive oil, Murphy's oil soap) felt wad under shot cup or round ball, with a thin "overshot card" separating it from the powder.

    Because of the disparity of terms, and the question of placement in the load, I've not answered the poll question.
     
  10. Mar 27, 2019 #10

    Eutycus

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    I dont think my mixes are scientific. I "eyeball it"when I'm mixing the ingredients and dont measure exact portions. Frankly I dont really think it matters that much.
     
  11. Mar 27, 2019 #11

    Enfield58

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    It's the 20 gauge Howdah pistol. I'm going to use some shot loads in it. Rather than posting this thread in the handgun section I wanted to get the smoothbore perspective.

    The cushion wad is the thick fiber wad. I purchased them from TOTW. In the photo below, I planned on using Wad-A, the thick cardboard wad for the over-powder wad. Then Wad-C would be the cushion wad on top of the over-powder wad. Wad-B would be placed on top of the shot.

    So let me get this straight, some folks are actually getting better results with the "Skychief Special" load - cards and wads loaded in reverse?

    Anyway, I was thinking about soaking the cushion wads (Wad-C) in vegetable oil then letting them drain in a colander over a pan.

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Mar 27, 2019 #12

    smo

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    The Skychief load works for me... with Olive Oil.
     
  13. Mar 27, 2019 #13

    Brokennock

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    The picture helps. I load powder then 2 of wad B, then a lubed felt wad, then round all or paper shot cup/cartridge, then another of wad B to hold it all in.

    Many folks here, that are willing to give it an honest try, are getting improved shot patterns by then adding a soaking wet with lube wad C on top of the whole thing.
    Search the Skychief load, and my thread on making shot cartridges/cups.

    For a long time now shooters have claimed that those big heavy C wads, loaded under the shot, ruin patterns by blowing through the shot column. But this is often hotly debated.

    Spence10 has a lot of good info on loading smoothbore on his website, Bob's Blackpowder Notebook.
     
  14. Mar 27, 2019 #14

    Brokennock

    Brokennock

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    A little tip for you. Build the entire package at the muzzle, as apposed to seating each component separately. If you seat your hard card, or thin card, on top of your powder, when you try to seat the next item, you will be fighting trapped air between the card and the item you are loading.
    If you only push each item in, just enough to start the next one, then ram the whole mess down as one, that trapped air pushes through the powder a out the flash hole.
     
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  15. Mar 27, 2019 #15

    THBailey

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    "It's the 20 gauge Howdah pistol. I'm going to use some shot loads in it. Rather than posting this thread in the handgun section I wanted to get the smoothbore perspective."

    Not sure what you plan to use the gun for, but you might look into working up a "buck and ball" load for it.
     
  16. Mar 27, 2019 #16

    Skychief

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    I get great results with the "Skychief Special" load with its soaking wet cushion wad.

    Good luck with the Howdah and please post some shotload patterns for us to see if you don't mind.

    Best regards, Skychief.
     
  17. Mar 27, 2019 #17

    No Deer

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    I loaded some black powder shotgun shells using a dry wad. Took me over an hour to clean the lead out of the barrel. So I will never use a dry wad again in anything.
     
  18. Mar 27, 2019 #18

    Loyalist Dave

    Loyalist Dave

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    I've started using 1/2" lubed wads. I use 50/50 beeswax and olive oil mix. I melt it in a pan and submerge the wads, the pan cools and out come the wads.

    Seems to work well.

    LD
     

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