1851 navy 44

Discussion in 'Black Powder Shooting / Muzzleloaders / Handguns' started by bp44, Dec 27, 2010.

  1. bp44

    bp44 New Member

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    I recieved a traditions 1851 navy 44 caliber for christmas and was wanting to know what is the best powder to use. The info sent with this gun said blackpowder or pyrodex p was the best to use. Being that i am not schooled in the use of blackpowder I was hoping to get some info on what powder can be used safely. Also when casting your own shot can ingots made from wheel weights be used for casting. Any information given will be appreciated.
  2. rammed

    rammed New Member

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    The powders you mention are fine , but I prefer real black powder.:D

    Use pure lead for the round balls.
  3. rdstrain49

    rdstrain49 New Member

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    Black powder fff or Pyrodex P will be fine. If the wheel weight metal is soft enough to load into the cylinder without too much force, you will be ok. Excess force to press the ball into each cylinder will result in unnecessary wear on loading armm. You should shave a ring of lead when you press the ball into each chamber, if not go to a larger ball. Get a copy of Lymans Black Powder handbook or similar publication. You can not read too much. Best of all find an experienced BP shooter who is willing to mentor you. Check out the other BP shooting forums. Lots of good information out there.

    I've been shooting BP for nearly 50 years and am still at it. In fact I just got back from test firing a gun I've been working on. It's only about 15 degrees here today. It must be fun or I wouldn't put up with this weather. Have way too much fun.
  4. Smiley Bob

    Smiley Bob New Member

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    As a former Civil War reenactor I agree. Goex BP for me!
    Smiley Bob
  5. bp44

    bp44 New Member

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    So let me see if I got this straight any 3f powder should burn the same. So if my pistol says to use 3f any 3f powder will work. :confused:
  6. Shooter45

    Shooter45 *Administrator* Staff Member

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    Any brand FFF BLACK POWDER will work well. :)
    Hope you enjoy your new black powder revolver.
  7. bp44

    bp44 New Member

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    thank you all for the information, now i am gong to enjoy this new hobby of blackpowder
  8. TxBlackPowder

    TxBlackPowder New Member

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    I got the same gun for Christmas, and I'm in the same boat. Lots of questions, and ready to go shooting. But not really excited about the "trial and error" approach. :0)
  9. Oneida Steve

    Oneida Steve Active Member

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    Welcome to TFF, bp44.

    Many manuals mention Pyrodex P or a similar blackpowder substitute because in too many areas it is impossible to find real blackpowder for sale. The substitutes are not as heavily regulated and are easier to find.

    I shoot Pyrodex P and Speer swaged lead balls in my cap-and-ball revolvers. Works fine for me.
  10. redwing carson

    redwing carson Former Guest

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    Becareful with WW lead in a B/P six gun. As mentioned in the other post the extra force can and will damage the loading arm. If you have the chamber mouths chamfered this allows some ease in loading. I like the open chambers as I don't like the shaved lead rings getting into the cylinder face and barrel. The ROA is well made and very strong I managed to bend the cylinder pin with WW lead balls. That is why Midway stocks ROA base pins.:D Hard lead balls often do not seal and allows gas cutting. Gas cutting occurs when gas passes around the ball and melts the lead causing lead to foul the pistols bore. Soft lead or dead lead will tend to fill and seal the bore up on entering the pistols forcing cone. Just some thoughts from an old handgunner.

    RC
  11. bp44

    bp44 New Member

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    well i shot my navy 1851 today and cap and ball is so cool. Really like it and now I want to get a rifle for hunting. I do have a few more questions about my 1851. The one my wife bought for me was the brass frame and I see that hot loads will damage the frame, what do you guys think is a safe load for long term use. Also do you think fireing 30 gr of powder every now and then for hunting would be ok? Do you think it would take down a white tail with in 30 yards? Have any of you used the wonder wads and how do they compare to the wonder lube?
  12. bp44

    bp44 New Member

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    Oh yea I read that the ball needs to be close to the end of the cylinder after loading. I shot 22 gr today and the ball was pretty deep in the cylinder. Any ideas to get it closer to the end of the cylinder? I told this would effect accuracy.
  13. bp44

    bp44 New Member

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    The revolver seems to be really cool and fun to shoot. I did not know anything about bp but use the web and the forums to gain info. These guys have so much knowledge to give and that will help you out. I used Pyrodex P and my 1851 shot great the wonder lube was a little messy I checking on the wonder wads to see if they work well. I also read that cci caps are not the best and that remington is the way to go. Happy shooting
  14. rdstrain49

    rdstrain49 New Member

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    bp44; your 44 is not suitable for big game, small game however----. Second, about bullet jump (the ball being seated deep in the cylinder) don't worry about it. Many will say this and that about the ball being too deep, must be close to the forcing cone. I am here to tell you (30 years armorer, 45 years competitive shooter and much other experience) it just doesn't matter. I would suggest that if the ball is seated deep in the cylinder, use a lubed wad under the ball, not to get the ball closer to the forcing cone (although it will), but to eliminate the need for a large amount of grease on top of the ball. It's no big deal but it works for me. As you can see from the pictures (if they show up) I do know a thing or two about accuracy. Good luck and have fun. All groups shot at 25 yards, one handed, no support. Shots out of the groups were "called" out.
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2011
  15. bp44

    bp44 New Member

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    Thanks for the info. What revolver would you use if you were wanting to hunt white tail deer with a bp revolver.
  16. rdstrain49

    rdstrain49 New Member

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    Although I am not a big fan of them, I think the Ruger Old Army with adjustable sights would probably be my choice. I know, I know, there Walkers, Dragoons, etc. that pack a big punch. My choice of the Ruger is based on adjustable sights and resulting accuracy without the need for "Kentucky windage".

    From the time my Dad taught me the basics of shooting at a very young age, through my formal training, I have been taught one shot, one kill. Accuracy, practice, more practice and repeat. Even though I have killed a lot of deer with a handgun, some at considerable distance, I would personally choose a BP rifle over a BP handgun, but that's just me. Knowing your personal limits and the limits of your weapon are key to making a responsible shot.

    Regardless of your choice, get out there, be safe and have way too much fun.
  17. ofitg

    ofitg New Member

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    bp44 - one thing I might add to rdstrain49's excellent advice - check your state's laws and see what's legal for deer hunting.
  18. rdstrain49

    rdstrain49 New Member

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    My bad. ofitg is RIGHT. Some states don't allow BP handguns even during BP rifle season. Some states also have rather odd calibre restrictions that prevent the use of sabots. Be sure you know your states reg's before you lay your money down. BTW, deer are not much of a challenge even with a BP weapon. Try head shots on squirrels with your Navy. :)
  19. bp44

    bp44 New Member

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    Well the Texas state laws do not allow the use of cap and ball revolvers in bp season. So I guess I will have to buy me a bp rifle(man I hate that) for hunting deer. But I do have a question for you guys. I bought a punch today for me to start making my own wads for my navy 1851. I cant find any heavy felt locally but they do have the vegetable fiber, can I cut and lube this the same as felt or is felt the better way to go? I dont know anything about this vegetable fiber and how it will react to the lubing process.
  20. Gatofeo

    Gatofeo New Member

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    Returning to one of your original questions:
    Do NOT use Hodgdon 777 in that brass-framed revolver. Hodgdon does not suggest its use. It's strong stuff and should only be used in steel-framed guns.
    See the Hodgdon site for info on 777, and for info on Pyrodex too.
    Pyrodex and black powder are fine for your revolver. Pyrodex appears to be more corrosive than black powder, so be sure to clean your gun right away. You might put it off a day or two, depending on humidity in your area, but to be cautious I'd at least clean the bore and chambers the same day as use.

    Brass-framed revolvers are not as strong as their steel brethren. I'd suggest you not exceed 25 grains of FFFG black powder, or equivalent. For target shooting, use 20 to 22 grains.
    A little corn meal on top of the powder may be necessary to take up space, so the ball is near the end of the cylinder.
    Enjoy your revolver. It's an addicting fascinating hobby.
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