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Thread: My homemade black powder

  1. #3921
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    2,787
    Good shooting.
    Was that 60 gr by Volume or by weight.
    How is your weight to volume comparison to factory powder ?
    How clean did it shoot ?

  2. #3922
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Mar 2021
    Posts
    205
    No that's not it. Looks like it would have good info though. Here's a link to the file I downloaded

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Wnq...w?usp=drivesdk

  3. #3923
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
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    Lake Havasu City, Arizona!
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    Regarding my post on not scaring away newbies. I never meant to imply one should use just any materials. Clearly, I think one should use one of the top 3 or 4 wood types, and quality chemicals. I was hoping that would stand to reason.

    My only point was that it is not necessary to "go down the rabbit holes" that many of us do, searching for "more better whatever".

    Follow Fly's or Indian Joe's proven and simple techniques, use good supplies, and have fun. That's all.

    Vettepilot
    "Those who sacrifice freedom for security, have neither."
    Benjamin Franklin. (A very wise man!)

  4. #3924
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Location
    Northwest Arkansas
    Posts
    75
    Quote Originally Posted by HighUintas View Post
    Nice shooting!! What kind of sight is on your rifle?

    Here's the link I mentioned:
    https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a150455.pdf
    That's some long, tedious reading, but some was pretty interesting, also. Thanks for posting it! My sights are two blade. Flat, the top or first blade is marked 100 yds. Raised, it is marked 300 and the second or bottom blade raised is marked 500. They are all narrow vee blades. Tapered blade front.
    That rifle, out of the box, with recommended 60 grains, with a mini bullet shot nearly three feet high and three feet to the right, at one hundred yards. It's been a slow tedious process, to get it to here. My plan is to eventually get it to gong my 560 yard 4X4 foot half inch plate gong. That may take a minute.

  5. #3925
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
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    Northwest Arkansas
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    Quote Originally Posted by LAGS View Post
    Good shooting.
    Was that 60 gr by Volume or by weight.
    How is your weight to volume comparison to factory powder ?
    How clean did it shoot ?
    Lags that was 60 grains by weight. I would be lying if I said what the weight to volume comparison was. The only one I remember, when I did that and I have them wrote down somewhere, in reams of notes, was 92% of Graff and Son's Swiss powder. I don't remember which charcoal that was from. I would say either Black Willow, or Sassafras. Compared to that Graff powder, it shoots as clean, or more so. I swab every shot, when testing these out. And, have tested several patches and lubes. My good powder out performs that Swiss enough, I can use the same volume, and obtain similar bullet speeds; but all my tests since buying the chronograph have been 50, 75 and 100 yards, with 55, 58, 60 and 62 grains by weight, with either five or ten shots. And, I have ran out of the Graff powder and they have switched manufacturers, since I bought from them. So my 'factory baseline' may have to change.
    Last edited by DoubleBuck; 05-29-2021 at 12:22 AM.

  6. #3926
    Boolit Master
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    Feb 2018
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    Yeah DoubleBuck. I got side-tracked needing to respond about my newbie post that made me feel bad as to it being misunderstood, but nice shooting and that's a decent velocity for only 60 grains. Nice work!

    I also thought your post on how to make powder was quite funny. I vote for it to be made a "Sticky"!!

    ;~)

    Also thanks to all for the research links! Some people watch TV, some relax by reading novels, taking a nap, whatever. I like to study, and build my reference library, on many subjects. All too often I go to look something up online, and the info is gone. Sometimes mysteriously so, sometimes because someone quit paying the web hosting bill. That's why I put loving care into my own personal libraries. And too I suppose, for TEOLAWKI...

    ;~)

    Vettepilot
    Last edited by Vettepilot; 05-28-2021 at 10:35 PM.
    "Those who sacrifice freedom for security, have neither."
    Benjamin Franklin. (A very wise man!)

  7. #3927
    Boolit Master
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    Feb 2018
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    @DoubleBuck, I just re-read your treatise on making Black Powder.

    I can't believe I missed it the first time, but how could you forget to include the importance of moon phases, and only doing certain processes on the second Tuesday of next week??!!??



    Vettepilot
    "Those who sacrifice freedom for security, have neither."
    Benjamin Franklin. (A very wise man!)

  8. #3928
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Location
    Northwest Arkansas
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    Quote Originally Posted by HighUintas View Post
    No that's not it. Looks like it would have good info though. Here's a link to the file I downloaded

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Wnq...w?usp=drivesdk


    HighUintas, very interesting read, there! I laughed a couple of times, thinking of my post from yesterday, and these guys. lol

  9. #3929
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vettepilot View Post
    @DoubleBuck, I just re-read your treatise on making Black Powder.

    I can't believe I missed it the first time, but how could you forget to include the importance of moon phases, and only doing certain processes on the second Tuesday of next week??!!??



    Vettepilot
    I know, right? I thought everyone used moon phases, but completely forgot the Almanac part. Thanks for the reminder!!!!

  10. #3930
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Location
    Northwest Arkansas
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vettepilot View Post
    Yeah DoubleBuck. I got side-tracked needing to respond about my newbie post that made me feel bad as to it being misunderstood, but nice shooting and that's a decent velocity for only 60 grains. Nice work!

    I also thought your post on how to make powder was quite funny. I vote for it to be made a "Sticky"!!

    ;~)

    Also thanks to all for the research links! Some people watch TV, some relax by reading novels, taking a nap, whatever. I like to study, and build my reference library, on many subjects. All too often I go to look something up online, and the info is gone. Sometimes mysteriously so, sometimes because someone quit paying the web hosting bill. That's why I put loving care into my own personal libraries. And too I suppose, for TEOLAWKI...

    ;~)

    Vettepilot
    VettePilot, I wouldn't worry about your post being taken wrong. It was spot on. We forget that some are here trying to get the basics, and that we have trouble maintaining them. That's probably why they burned guys like us at the stake, in the Medieval days. lol.

    I had to edit this, to P.S.
    Speaking of burning at the stake, can you imagine the first black powder guru with an audience before the King? He holds a match in his hand, lit, and blows a ram hornful of the Holy Black, over it, in the King's face. lol While he offers to redo the stunt, the King and all his guards are scared to get near him. hahaha If he was smart, he probably lived. lol I personally think it was Indian Joe. hahahaha He gets back to the lab or a tory and tells his assistant, "It was only supposed to smoke and you just had to keep experimenting!!!! I've told you time and again, if it ain't broke, don't fix it!!! But, no, you just have to keep going, and now, I've blown up the King and all his Court and even the Jester is frowning!"
    Last edited by DoubleBuck; 05-29-2021 at 02:18 AM.

  11. #3931
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
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    Speaking of "Blowing up the King":

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_...ing_the_Legend

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ZbvNIaC3gKM

    The video is just outstanding. You can very clearly see the shock wave propagation. Purportedly, the size of the explosion even surprised the experts!

    Vettepilot
    "Those who sacrifice freedom for security, have neither."
    Benjamin Franklin. (A very wise man!)

  12. #3932
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
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    And while I'm at it:

    Amazing proof of the incredible lengths some people will go to for a YouTube post!!

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=de7xDMjAxZI

    Edit to add: By the same guy... talk about a "Short (multi) Barrelled Shotgun!!"

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=wfd4w2cjlx8

    Vettepilot
    Last edited by Vettepilot; 05-29-2021 at 05:46 PM.
    "Those who sacrifice freedom for security, have neither."
    Benjamin Franklin. (A very wise man!)

  13. #3933
    Well... I did some experiments. Here are the results..

    1) The fun one - I loaded some .45acp with black powder and shot them from my full-size 45 (G21) and my subcompact 45 (G36). They worked and seemed to have decent kick, but they didn't cycle the slide. I loaded some aluminum casings (if they didn't work, I was just going to get rid of them instead of pulling bullets) with the same charge I used for 38sp and topped it with a 230gn soft cast, pc bullet. The chrono said they were in the 1180fps range, but I'm not convinced. Like I said, they didn't cycle the slide (except for one stovepipe), but I did get the glock "bulge" on every case and I've never had that before. Who knows? But it would definitely put holes in stuff in a SHTF situation.

    2) I put one drop of water in some fines I was going to press and let it sit overnight to evenly distribute in the bottle. Then I did the press-release-press method. The original press was over an hour. Then I let the pressure off for several minutes, then pressed it again for more than an hour. I changed two variables at the same time - because... science - so I'm not sure which made the difference. When I did the second pressing, I felt the normal "give" as the pressure came up. That could have been the powder or the press. Then there was only one slight let-off several minutes in. The powder that came out was crunchier and shinier than the other powders so far. I tested it for density - Goex will give me 25 grains in a .45 case, my original powder gave me 22 grains, and this double-pressed gave me 24 grains. Something definitely made it denser.

    3) I made a 100 grahm batch and added 1 grahm of red gum. I put it in a bottle, added 2cc of denatured alcohol, and let it sit overnight. I put it in my die and pressed like normal. I didn't check for density, but it did seem crunchier than the normal stuff. But when I ground it, I got about the same ammount of fines, so no improvement there.

    Well, that's about all I have to add right now. I might start with a few drops of water and double-pressing to get my density up.

  14. #3934
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Location
    Northwest Arkansas
    Posts
    75
    Those were all very cool. More money than I have, but that's ok, too.
    I saw in the comments, on the first video, that at 1:05, there is a very cool smoke ring blows out of the round window, on the end of their building.

  15. #3935
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Location
    Northwest Arkansas
    Posts
    75
    Paramax55 notable experiments! Interesting, too!

  16. #3936
    The alcohol/red gum thing got me thinking... there would be no way to control this and it would go away over time, but... what if you had a little alcohol residue in your black powder when loading cartridges? Could it provide some hydrocarbon for a little extra "kick"? Kind of like dieseling a pellet gun?

  17. #3937
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Lake Havasu City, Arizona!
    Posts
    566
    Quote Originally Posted by Paramax55 View Post
    Well... I did some experiments. Here are the results..

    1) The fun one - I loaded some .45acp with black powder and shot them from my full-size 45 (G21) and my subcompact 45 (G36). They worked and seemed to have decent kick, but they didn't cycle the slide. I loaded some aluminum casings (if they didn't work, I was just going to get rid of them instead of pulling bullets) with the same charge I used for 38sp and topped it with a 230gn soft cast, pc bullet. The chrono said they were in the 1180fps range, but I'm not convinced. Like I said, they didn't cycle the slide (except for one stovepipe), but I did get the glock "bulge" on every case and I've never had that before. Who knows? But it would definitely put holes in stuff in a SHTF situation.

    2) I put one drop of water in some fines I was going to press and let it sit overnight to evenly distribute in the bottle. Then I did the press-release-press method. The original press was over an hour. Then I let the pressure off for several minutes, then pressed it again for more than an hour. I changed two variables at the same time - because... science - so I'm not sure which made the difference. When I did the second pressing, I felt the normal "give" as the pressure came up. That could have been the powder or the press. Then there was only one slight let-off several minutes in. The powder that came out was crunchier and shinier than the other powders so far. I tested it for density - Goex will give me 25 grains in a .45 case, my original powder gave me 22 grains, and this double-pressed gave me 24 grains. Something definitely made it denser.

    3) I made a 100 grahm batch and added 1 grahm of red gum. I put it in a bottle, added 2cc of denatured alcohol, and let it sit overnight. I put it in my die and pressed like normal. I didn't check for density, but it did seem crunchier than the normal stuff. But when I ground it, I got about the same ammount of fines, so no improvement there.

    Well, that's about all I have to add right now. I might start with a few drops of water and double-pressing to get my density up.
    Well, I know I'm "dating myself" here, but as Sergeant Schultz would say... "Veeery Interesting!!"

    Vettepilot
    "Those who sacrifice freedom for security, have neither."
    Benjamin Franklin. (A very wise man!)

  18. #3938
    Boolit Buddy
    Join Date
    Mar 2021
    Posts
    205
    I tested my Paulownia BP today against OE 2f. The results are: I think I need to work on my charcoal or something. My homemade was about 140fps on avg slower and much dirtier.

    The two loads of 10 rounds each were:

    68gr OE 2f
    405gr bullet

    68gr homemade
    405gr bullet

    I was able to shoot the 10 **** OE string without wiping and without any noticeable drop in accuracy.

    After 5 shots of the homemade, it seemed the velocity was increasing and group getting larger, so I wiped the barrel after 6 shots with a single wet patch. There was what seemed like twice the amount of fouling on that patch than the one after shooting 10 rounds of OE without wiping. Then decided to wipe after each shot for the rest and it seemed to be very dirty each wipe.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I picked up a quart metal paint can today. I think I'm going to do some small batches to see if I can figure out what I did wrong (if anything) with my charcoal. I also picked up a cedar picket to test.

  19. #3939
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    2,209
    Quote Originally Posted by Paramax55 View Post
    The alcohol/red gum thing got me thinking... there would be no way to control this and it would go away over time, but... what if you had a little alcohol residue in your black powder when loading cartridges? Could it provide some hydrocarbon for a little extra "kick"? Kind of like dieseling a pellet gun?
    Been there done that years ago and what you surmise is exactly how it played - could smell the alky in the powder when it was first made - got some extra oooph (without digging out my chrono book I am guessing around 100fps) - then over time it evaporated out (several months not days) - powder lost its extra, also became crumbly - I ditched the alky idea.

  20. #3940
    Boolit Man
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Location
    Northwest Arkansas
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    75
    HighUintas it looks like your rifle is capable! Now, you've just got a hundred variables to choose from, as to where to go, from here! You're on the right path!

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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