Some black powder revolver facts please

Discussion in 'Black Powder Shooting / Muzzleloaders / Handguns' started by charagrin, Sep 27, 2007.

  1. charagrin

    charagrin Former Guest

    Mar 6, 2007
    I would just like some info on black powder revolver shooting. I have one and have shot it quite often but would like to make it cheaper to use.

    1. Instead of wads and the like between the powder and the ball can i just use some toilet paper or some paper towel?

    2. Instead of black powder can I use a small ammount of smokeless? I know that smokeless is stronger than BP but if i use less of it will it work?

    3. Where can i get a good leather holster for a 1851 navy fullsize? I dont want pleather or a modern design. I want a old style brown one that can hold the gun for long periods of time. Im just wrapping er up in a towel for storage right now.

    4. Where can i get bulk balls for a .44 caliber BPR fairly cheaply? I think i have everything to make em here but the lead itself is hard to come by to make it worth while.

    Ty for any help you give.-Char
  2. mrkirker

    mrkirker New Member

    Jul 13, 2007
    1) Try using plain, non-flavored cream of wheat. It's cheap and the amount can be adjusted to fit your charge. I sodered a stiff wire on a .40 S&W cartridge, then filed the cartridge down so that it delivers the correct amount each time for the load that i have worked out for my 1858 Rem.
    2) I would strongly suggest that you not use any amount of smokeless powder in your black powder revolver. Excessive pressures will be created that can exceed the designed stress levels of the cylinder (something to do with differering 'power curves'). I know that some folks say they 'tweak' their loads with a 'tad' of smokeless. Sooner or later, these folks earn the nick-name 'fingers' or 'nubby'.
    3) You didn't mention the model of revolver you are shooting. That will make a big diff in your holster selection. Try Midway, Cabellas's or for old style revolvers S&S. I wouldn't store your piece in the holster, however. Something in the curing process of leather makes the gun rust like Hell. A quality gun rug, or a Bore Store in the correct size for the piece is the way to go for storage.
    4) Speer makes a good round ball with no sprue-nib and it's offered in a var of sizes in each caliber.
    Good luck and good shooting.
  3. armedandsafe

    armedandsafe Guest

    Good advice above. However I will change his advice on smokeless just a little bit: NEVER USE ANY SMOKELESS IN A BP GUN unless the manufacturer SPECIFICALLY states you can.

    If you treat a leather holster in Ballistol, it will no longer cause rust on the pistol in and of itself. However, it will still trap moisture against the peice and allow some rusting for that reason.

    I get my lead from the junk yard for only a little bit. I just came home last week with 85lbs for $35. Just remember to get plumbers lead and don't accept any babbet lead. You are looking for PURE lead, although LYMAN's alloy is alright for a pistol.
  4. rockloc

    rockloc New Member

    Oct 2, 2007
    right now... frankfort, mi
    1. havnt tried
    2. there's one question i have for you... how much to you care about your face
    3. i got mine on, no problems so far
    4. i just pick up mine at gander mountain for $5 for 100
  5. polishshooter

    polishshooter Well-Known Member

    Mar 25, 2001
    Char, don't even think about smokeless powder, PERIOD.

    If you want to try something different than blackpowder, and easier to clean, try Pyrodex or Trip 7 or any of the other "Black Powder Substitutes" you find at Walmart or just about anywhere. Read the labels, and look for the ones that say "fffG" or equivalent. Some even come in pre-measured "pellets' that make it even easier.

    Now as for a wad or filler, I don't use any. I use 25 gr. of fffG BP and seat the .452 ball or conical over it, it seats really tight, even shaves a little ring of lead off of them. Then I fill the cylinder with a dab of CVA cylinder grease (that looks, feels and smells a LOT like "Crisco":p ) and fire away.

    My revolver is a "Traditions" 1860 Army that takes .452 balls or bullets, which conveniently is the diameter my .45 acp 200 grain lead SWCs are, so I shoot them through it quite a bit since I have thousands left over from my IPSC days....they can be tricky and a little slow to load straight, because the rammer head is concave and these are flat nosed, but when loaded they shoot fine, although they recoil a little harder...I shoot them with only about 20 grains of powder though, to make sure the longer bullet will seat below the cylinder mouth...

    I get my roundballs and conicals from a guy at the Indy 1500 gun show that casts them, I paid about 6 months ago if I remember right like $3.50/100 for roundballs, and like $6/100 for conicals....

    As for leather, I used to dabble with making leather stuff when I was more involved with the NMLRA and the Rendezvous' there twice a year, the first holster I ever attempted I made about 15 years ago or so with leather scraps I got at Friendship. and while it wasn't perfect, it works, and the Traditions is hanging from the gun rack in that holster as we speak! I call it my "Polish/Mexican Tie down Model." ;):)
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2007

  6. Polish is right, Char. Stay away from any smokeless powder when shooting a blackpowder weapon! I personally know of one individual who insisted on trying that. He was lucky . . . he only ended up losing his new rifle and not his head!

    One of the best sources I know of for blackpowder pistol leather, Char, is El Paso Saddlery. You might look here:
  7. Little Rooster

    Little Rooster New Member

    Oct 17, 2007
    Old Dominion
    Pistolschu and Polish are right don't use the Heathen smokeless powder in in your Black powder revolvers. I use 24/5 grains of fffg Goex or Schutzen a ball and top lube with crisco. I do make a lube wad and occassional use them. If your trying to save money on ball cost try casting them yourself.
  8. jjmitchell60

    jjmitchell60 Active Member

    May 10, 2004
    Raised in Buzzard Roost near Frog Town in hillls o
    NOTHING I can add except to chime in an state plainly from 30 years of personal BP shooting experience:


    With that said there is one or 2 BP rifles out there that have been made within the past 5 years that do use modern powder BUT those are the ONLY ones.
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