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Thread: Black Powder Load

  1. #1

    Black Powder Load

    I have a Hawken 50 cal. BP rifle that I have shot many times but would like to shoot steel at my club rifle range at 50 or 75 meters instead of the permitted 100 meter range. The safety manager says to shoot steel at the closer ranges I would need to have a muzzle velocity of either less than 1500 PFS or a muzzle energy of less than 1500 FPE. I cannot find BP load data for round ball 50 cal. to meet these specs. Any ideas please to comply and still shoot steel?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master hc18flyer's Avatar
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    I haven't run mine over the chrono in several years, but I thought my 70 grain measure of bp, with a .50 rb ran 1300+ fps?. I think Goex had pb loads in common calibers listed? I will see if I can find them, maybe on the Hodgdon site?
    hc18flyer
    Last edited by hc18flyer; 01-23-2023 at 11:19 PM. Reason: Correction

  3. #3
    Boolit Master hc18flyer's Avatar
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    goexpowder.com

  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    I shoot blackhorn209 with a pure lead bullet, mag primer, depending on lot number of powder, 38grs to 42grs, weighed, under a 500+ gr bullet gets me around 1200 FPS over a coronagraph. Very accurate load...

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    Lyman black powder handbook & loading manual shows Goex ffg 70 grs @ 1450 fps
    Goex fffg 70 grs @ 1542 fps both with roundball .490
    24 inch barrel 1-48 twist
    60 grains of Goex fffg will get you 1454 fps

  6. #6
    Boolit Man
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    T/C Hawken .50cal 50gr FF & PRB =1445FPS. 60Gr FF & PRB = 1557FPS

  7. #7
    Thank you.

  8. #8
    Boolit Grand Master


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    Assuming a .490" pure lead ball, it doesn't hit 1500 ft/lb of energy at the muzzle until 1957 fps. Unless you are shooting very strong loads, you are not going to have to worry about 2000+ fps.

  9. #9
    65 grains of 3f works very well for me. That's the accuracy load for my Great Plains Rifle and I don't change it when shooting targets or hunting with it.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by schickepoint View Post
    I have a Hawken 50 cal. BP rifle that I have shot many times but would like to shoot steel at my club rifle range at 50 or 75 meters instead of the permitted 100 meter range. The safety manager says to shoot steel at the closer ranges I would need to have a muzzle velocity of either less than 1500 PFS or a muzzle energy of less than 1500 FPE. I cannot find BP load data for round ball 50 cal. to meet these specs. Any ideas please to comply and still shoot steel?
    Sam Fadalas "Blackpowder Loading Manual" has the tables you want (its a Gun Digest publication from last century) Your safety manager needs some eddication about round ball ballistics - you will struggle to get a 50 cal ball above 1500FPE (those are top end loads of 110 + grains of FFg Goex) and if you manage to crack 2000FPS at the muzzle with a 50 cal ball you lose almost half getting to 100 yards and its down under 500 FPE

  11. #11
    Boolit Grand Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by indian joe View Post
    Sam Fadalas "Blackpowder Loading Manual" has the tables you want (its a Gun Digest publication from last century) Your safety manager needs some eddication about round ball ballistics - you will struggle to get a 50 cal ball above 1500FPE (those are top end loads of 110 + grains of FFg Goex) and if you manage to crack 2000FPS at the muzzle with a 50 cal ball you lose almost half getting to 100 yards and its down under 500 FPE
    I'm sure he is aware, but the range has its rules. My guess is it is to keep people from shooting full power shotgun slugs at closer ranges. Those tend to have a nasty amount of splash back at the shooter compared to handgun rounds, even if it doesn't hurt the target.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by megasupermagnum View Post
    I'm sure he is aware, but the range has its rules. My guess is it is to keep people from shooting full power shotgun slugs at closer ranges. Those tend to have a nasty amount of splash back at the shooter compared to handgun rounds, even if it doesn't hurt the target.
    errmjm I was lookin at his rules ---sez either MV less than 1500FPS or ME less than 1500FPE - just pointing out his 50 RB will easily qualify via FPE with all but the heaviest loads -----did I read that wrong somewhere??????

  13. #13
    Boolit Grand Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by indian joe View Post
    errmjm I was lookin at his rules ---sez either MV less than 1500FPS or ME less than 1500FPE - just pointing out his 50 RB will easily qualify via FPE with all but the heaviest loads -----did I read that wrong somewhere??????
    You read it right. I'm just pointing out that the safety manager can't know everything. Go up to just a 54 caliber for example, and suddenly you have a real possibility of breaking those rules. It sounds obvious to us, but not so much to those who don't shoot muzzleloaders.

  14. #14
    Boolit Bub
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    Click image for larger version. 

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    Here's the load data from the TC Hawken manual.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by megasupermagnum View Post
    You read it right. I'm just pointing out that the safety manager can't know everything. Go up to just a 54 caliber for example, and suddenly you have a real possibility of breaking those rules. It sounds obvious to us, but not so much to those who don't shoot muzzleloaders.
    Yeah OP will need to show him some "evidence" - a chart from someplace with the numbers on it - should be easy to find.

  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by rigger View Post
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    Here's the load data from the TC Hawken manual.
    has anybody been able to duplicate those results in the field????

  17. #17
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    I matched the 90gr load with a Lyman GP. Almost 2000fps and very tight group

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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