Went to the range at Carson City on Sunday (site of the Western TFL meet last year) and here's my report.
Brought my 2 Band Enfield rifle (Parker Hale - earlier English made reproduction) out and shot minie balls I had casted from the Parker Hale mould (RCBS product). The minie balls were lubed with SPG and were greasy to handle.
Using 60 grains of FF powder and shooting offhand, I found it easy to keep everything on the chest of a man sized target at 100 yards. My Whitworth mentor was shooting his 2 band Enfield at a white object sitting on the hillside & past the 300 yard target line. Setting my sights at 500 yards, I began firing and after a few shots too low, managed to hit in the immediate vicinity of the target. From the distance we were at, it appeared to be within 6" of it.
Well, our spotter was looking through a 40X Leupold scope and told us the white object was two white paper coffee cups (one inserted into the other) and our minies were actually within 1' of it. The distance made the hillside appear more steep than it was. Shooting offhand, our shots consistenly came close to the cups. We were impressed by the 2 Band and the minie balls.
Besides being accurate (darn if a real good shot tried offhand), over 50 minies were fired from my rifle alone. No misfires were experienced and the SPG lube did its job in keeping the fouling down. Each minie, from first to last, easily slid down the barrel under the weight of the ramrod.
Having shot round ball for years, this was my first experience with Minie balls and it made ME a believer. Then again, having read plenty of Civil War books, I should have known anyway...