what do you use when swabbing between shots?

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Mike in FL

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Those who can shoot all day without swinging are using patches to thin or balls too small or both.
It is a law of nature that burned black powder will foul the bore. The more dirty shots you take the thicker the dirt.
 
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Everyone has their preferred system, after trying all that I have read over the last ten years I have developed the one that works best for me and which firearm I am shooting; Rifle, Smoothbore, Pistol don't all seem to like what the others like so I treat them accordingly to their preferences.
Only fluids I carry is: TOW Mink lube, Shenandoah lube/cleaner, Bear oil (when available), and Spit.
I do carry a small bottle of alcohol soaked patches I use before taking an extended break in the field.

At the end of date I use Shenandoah for my last couple shots followed by a soaked patch wipe before packing up; I found Shenandoah keeps everything 'soft' for an easier clean up once home (I use very little water and clean at the kitchen table).
I just started using Butch's boar cleaner and I like it.

It all works for me and my barrels all are happy.
 

Johnny Tremain

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Those who can shoot all day without swinging are using patches to thin or balls too small or both.
It is a law of nature that burned black powder will foul the bore. The more dirty shots you take the thicker the dirt.
We use T/C 1000+ Bore cleaner #13 for patch lube, they are moist when I shove them down the barrel.
It packs the burnt residue into the powder charge and out the muzzle it goes.

Self cleaning is why we never swab even after 75 shots.
 
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I've never understood the supposed need to swab between shots. Each time a patched roundball is shoved down the barrel much of the fouling is pushed down and rests atop the load, so it is expelled during firing. With a good lube and proper patch/ball combination, this should happen every shot. Using a patch between shots deposits the fouling at the breech where it can only build up, and can lead to ignition issues. We have one guy in our shooting group who continues to swab between shots, and he always develops ignition issues after a few shots. The rest of us have tried to discourage his practice, but old habits die hard. I can shoot all day without swabbing.
 

Rock Home Isle

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The only gun that I’ve ever HAD to swab has been my little .32 calibre…I can usually get 5 to 6 shots before it gets difficult to load and I need to swab the bore…if it’s hot and humid, I may only get 2 or 3 shots before fouling gets bad…
 

TarponStalker

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Those who can shoot all day without swinging are using patches to thin or balls too small or both.
It is a law of nature that burned black powder will foul the bore. The more dirty shots you take the thicker the dirt.
As I mentioned earlier in this thread, maybe it’s a humidity issue that we in FL deal with. You will not shoot any of my rifles here without swabbing between shots unless you bring a sledge hammer.
After reading so many thoughts and loading processes by others I’m convinced that one main difference may be that some load with sopping wet patches. At that point I doubt if it really matters what the lube is.
While that may be great if you’re target shooting and firing within a short time after loading, I’m not gonna risk wet powder after sitting in a stand for hours or days with a wet patch on top of my powder. Maybe it’ll only wet a small portion of powder but I just can’t do that.
But, I am seriously considering trying a smaller ball. Maybe .01-.02 less. I’ve tried thinner patches and larger balls. Didn’t work for me.
But it’s fun working on it.
 

golden sky

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1. does swabbing fowl up the powder barrel and cause poor ignition. ?? it seems i could be forcing junk back in the ignition port when running a swab brush thru

2. would i be smart to polish the bore by shooting a few rounds of fine lapping compound coated balls thru, to reduce jagged surfaces that grip the fowling?

3. could i try shooting a thinner patch instead? but loading 1 thin patch over the powder, then 1 patch on the ball?
 
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Rock Home Isle

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1. does swabbing fowl up the powder barrel and cause poor ignition. ?? it seems i could be forcing junk back in the ignition port when running a swab brush thru

2. would i be smart to polish the bore by shooting a few rounds of fine lapping compound coated balls thru, to reduce jagged surfaces that grip the fowling?

3. could i try shooting a thinner patch instead? but loading 1 thin patch over the powder, then 1 patch on the ball?
My Brown Bess used to be a foul monster…polished the bore with 600 grit emery cloth and much better.

My vote is for #2…let us know how it goes…
 

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