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Thread: Good measure for black powder?

  1. #1

    Good measure for black powder?

    What is a good measure for black powder cartridge loading? I've loaded a few cartridges using the measure that's in the photo and I'm just looking to see if it's dependable or is there a better one out there? I use this one for loading my 1851's, but I'd like something that is more accurate and can be used for loading a good many cartridges in one sitting. Again, I'm new to the cartridge loading and I think I'm now hooked kinda bad.

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  2. #2
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Mojave Desert Palmdale, Ca. U.S.A.
    I have used the MVA for many years-Very happy with it.
    Hav'n you along-Is like lose'n 2 good men

  3. #3
    Boolit Master

    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Northwest Ohio
    I use an old Belding and Mull measure for black Powder. No plastic in them all cast iron aluminum and brass, and a little piece of glass in the window. Lymann makes a 55 in a black powder version, Hornady makes one of theirs in a black powder version. A simple dipper can be made to measure a charge and then check and trickle up also. A couple pieces of hobby store brass tubing that fit snug inside each other could be used to make a adjustable dipper.
    Solder a nut to the outside of the larger tube and transfer hole and threads thru. Cut inner tube to desired length and solder a base onto it. Use a piece of ready rod for a handle about 3"-4" a piece of snug fittng plastic tubing 2-2 1/2" for an comfortable grip area. The handle in the nut locks the inner tube in place for desired charge. For black powder cartridges I would use 1/2" of brass for the outer tube and if .030 wall 7/16 of for inner tube. A disc cut from a piece of brass flat stock soldered to the bottom makes the closed end.
    There are many ways to measure black powder from expensive rotary and or slide measures, I seen one sliding measure home made that used 1" of bushing and had a set with various holes drilled to measure. The old dippers work well as do the simple lee set. One draw back to the Lee or modern dippers is you may need 2 dips to make a charge for these rounds.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master

    Knarley's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Central Minnesota
    It depends on how spendy you want to get. Track of the Wolf, Dixie Gunworks, and Midway USA will all have decent BP measures. Most of them are for muzzle loading but will work well at the loading bench. I have any # of BP measures, have been shooting muzzle loaders for ever.
    I have one very similar to the one you show, and it is the one I use when setting up loads. I use it to get the volume, then I weigh the powder. After that, all powder is weighed to get a very consistant powder weight. One can change the powder charge just by the way you pour it into the measure. Not a whole lot, but it's still a little different. ( Take 70 gr. of black, and it will most likely fill a 45-70 case to the brim. Now take that same powder, drop tube it into the case, you'll have room left over. The volume changes, but not the weight.) But weight (scale) is always the same.
    The one you have will work, as long as you fill it the same way every time, and are using the same powder. (That's another story)
    Hope this helps a little,
    A gun in hand is worth two cops on the phone.

  5. #5
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    I use the Lyman 55 black powder measure. It throws very consistent weight charges, and can be fine-tuned.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    I like the Redding benchrest measure. I've had Belding and Mull, Lyman 55s and sold them all.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

    Wayne Smith's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Hampton Roads, Virginia
    It has been pretty well proven that static electricity will not set off black powder. Use any measure you want and you will be safe.
    Wayne the Shrink

    There is no 'right' that requires me to work for you or you to work for me!

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    South Jersey
    I use this one for loading my 1851's, but I'd like something that is more accurate and can be used for loading a good many cartridges in one sitting.
    Lee Perfect Powder Measure and this digital scale ... http://www.dx.com/p/1-7-lcd-high-pre...1#.WZn8XsYpC00

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Both the Lyman 55 and the various Harrell measures work for me with BP.(the Lyman has the brass drum).

  10. #10
    Boolit Master

    rfd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    NJ via TX
    my weigh, er, way, is with scoops and a .02 grain gempro 250 digital scale.

  11. #11
    Thanks for all of the replies everyone. Information was very helpful.

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  12. #12
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    I used to own a Lyman 55 but switched to a Harrell's Precision. I still use that one for small charges in my schuetzen rifles, but 99% of my loading over the last couple of years is done with the MVA Measure. I'd pick the MVA over any other by far.


  13. #13
    Everyone I talk to at the local BPCR match uses the RCBS Chargemaster. That's what I use for black powder.

  14. #14
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Canada, Ontario, Durham region
    Although the instructions for the RCBS Chargemaster say not to use it for weighing BP I have used mine with BP, it work great it's fast and accurate. All electrical and plastic dispensers of any type warn against use with BP. The lawyers worry about static discharge lighting up the BP. Good luck trying to get BP today's heavily graphited powder ignited with static spark. But if you worried about static build up the dispenser (any type) could be wired to a good ground.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    UPSTATE new york
    I use a Belding & Mull, but an Ideal number 5 works, or any of the above

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check