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-   -   loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock (http://thehunterslife.com/forums//showthread.php?t=6704)

dux 09-13-2006 12:26 PM

loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock
 
So as the title suggests, I recently purchased a traditions pennsylvania flintlock. The first day of shooting didn't go well, as it was misting, and my first time shooting a flintlock. But the second day after some research went a quite a bit better. Currently when I load, I put about 25 pounds of pressure on the ramrod(I read in a forum last night that you shouldn't compress your loads with a flintlock to promote combustion). Step two is too wipe off the pan, frizzen and flint with a cleaning patch, then I put in Pyrodex P grade. Then I've been using my vent pick to push some of the primeing power into the vent hole. I usually end up with the powder in the pan being level to the bottom of the nipple, with power going right up to the vent and in it.

While I know that this is not the correct way to prime a flintlock, it is the only way I have been able to get the gun to fire consistently.

Please feel free to critiqe and offer free advise on your own best loading techniques.

Stryker 09-13-2006 09:17 PM

Re: loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by dux
So as the title suggests, I recently purchased a traditions pennsylvania flintlock. The first day of shooting didn't go well, as it was misting, and my first time shooting a flintlock. But the second day after some research went a quite a bit better. Currently when I load, I put about 25 pounds of pressure on the ramrod(I read in a forum last night that you shouldn't compress your loads with a flintlock to promote combustion). Step two is too wipe off the pan, frizzen and flint with a cleaning patch, then I put in Pyrodex P grade. Then I've been using my vent pick to push some of the primeing power into the vent hole. I usually end up with the powder in the pan being level to the bottom of the nipple, with power going right up to the vent and in it.

While I know that this is not the correct way to prime a flintlock, it is the only way I have been able to get the gun to fire consistently.

Please feel free to critiqe and offer free advise on your own best loading techniques.

Dux,
welcome to the forum. You'll find as many different ways to load a rifle here as there are people. They way I do mine is after I load and run the ball down I give the top of the ball a couple of love taps with the ramrod. Not hard as I don't want to deform the ball, just enough to slightly compress the powder. Sound like you're well on your way, but my only other suggestion would be to 86 the pyrodex and get some black powder.

dux 09-14-2006 02:07 AM

Re: loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock
 
I've looked at my local options for powder, and none of them carry blackpowder anymore. Which kind of stinks cause I have to use Pyrdex P for priming, which is the equivelent to fffg i believe. I'm going to leave my loading procedure the same for now, as I think it's the easiest way for me to stay consistent at the moment. But priming wise, I want to expirement as much as possible. My current plan is to get my paws on some alcohol to put on patches to wipe the pan as clean as possible between shots. As I am pretty sure that my priming powder is getting a little soggy if I am unable to get spark on the first attempt. I also want to try using my pick to open a little hole into the main powder charge which should present more surface area for the priming charge to set off the main charge.

Basically, right now I can get the rifle to fire every time, but at the expense of my lock time. As it takes about .2 - .5 seconds for the priming to set off the main charge. I want to get that down to under .2 seconds consistantly, which will make my offhand shooting quite a bit more precise. Right now i can just barely keep all my shots in a 6" group at 50 yards or so freehand, but shooting over a log, I can keep them in a 2" or so group, maybe a little smaller. I know that the rifle has more to give me, cause on a couple shots from prone that i felt good about, ended with a cluster of 4 within an inch of each other.

The next thing i want to get will be some better sights. The current one seems to be more for hunting, as the front post covers up about 2 inches of target at 50 yards. I'd like to get a hooded front sight and a vernier tang sight, but that is going to be put off for next summer me thinks.

So, after my bit of rambling, if you guys(or gals) could share your exact way that you prime your pan and set up your flint and such to get consistent and quick main charge ignition, I would appreciate it greatly in my quest.

RatherBHuntin 09-14-2006 05:46 AM

Re: loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock
 
I use Goex 2 and 3F in my cap lock after trying some Pyrodex. I gave away 3 lbs of Pyrodex and bought more Goex because it is so much faster and more reliable. It would be worth your while to drive somewhere until you find a distributor. There may be some places that have it and your not aware of it, as it won't be on the shelf and you have to ask for it.

Stryker 09-14-2006 04:13 PM

Re: loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock
 
Check and see if there is a local M/L club. The larger ones buy in bulk and usually have some they're willing to sell.

dux 09-15-2006 01:08 AM

Re: loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock
 
Hmm, seems I'm going to have to do some hard looking to find some good black powder. Do you guys think that I can keep using Pyrodex for the main charge, and just ffffg black powder for priming, or should i go black powder for both?

quigleysharps4570 09-17-2006 05:02 AM

Re: loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by dux
should i go black powder for both?

I'd go both. The gentleman that is building my flintlock recommended Swiss 4f for priming. Gonna follow his advice. Have seen the one he shoots in action and you can't tell the difference in ignition time between it and a percussion. Course he's got everything fined tuned but swears by the Swiss for priming.

bigblock455skylarkcustom 09-27-2006 09:25 PM

Re: loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock
 
You're going to find it impossible to get accuracy out of the rifle while using pyrodex P as the maincharge and the prime powder. I to have traditions kentucky classic and before i found goex blackpowder i used pyrodex and it was a real hassle. So whats the problem you're having besides not being able to find real blackpowder? 25lbs pressure to ram the ball home? Are you using store bought or home made roundballs? I tried home made and after the 3rd shot, it was near impossible to load a 4th. I'd much rathr pay for the store bought and easy loading. Just keep your flints sharpe and keep the edge of the flint closest to the side of the barrel. You'll also want to check into a flash guard to keep other shooters on the right side of you safe from flying hot gases and burning powder. My brother learned the hard way ;) hahahaha!

Stryker 09-28-2006 08:16 AM

Re: loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock
 
You might try this group.
Twin Cities Muzzleloading Club. They're website has some club contacts.

http://www.tcmlc.com/

They should probably be able to tell you we're B/P can be found or might even have a club store.

HSM_miner 09-29-2006 11:24 AM

Re: loading a traditions pennsylvania flintlock
 
I had simular problem when I first started shooting my kentucky flinter. I did not have any bp at the time and a guy at the shop suggested using 3fff triple7. Needless to say ignition was simple hit or miss. Totally unacceptable delay in firing as well. Moral of the story: Black powder substitutes do not equal black powder!!!!!

So I ended up having to drive 6 hours to pick up some blackpowder. Don't mess around with 3fff for priming......get some 4ffff, trust me the ol timers made that stuff for a reason! I found that 4ffff ignited with the slightest spark and ignition time of the main charge was almost instantaneous.

Presently I am shooting 3fff goex bp and priming with 4ffff goex with great results. I am even planning to hunt with this rifle this fall! It was definetely worth the extra effort to get some real black powder.

P.S. Just an afterthought, the 4ffff goex does not muck up your pan like pyrodex does. It burns quite clean.


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