Thanks Beagle! Paint inspired by this...
I'm for the advantages of longer barrels most of the time too. But I'm a big fan of an 18" barrel also. Just never had one on a 50 caliber black powder before....we'll see how it goes.
The main reasons for cutting the barrel from 24" to 18" was the last 4 or so inches of the barrel were BADLY pitted and no rifling what so ever. It looked like the muzzle of a smooth bore musket that had been buried for a decade
cutting it created a near perfect bore with a shiny new crown.
The second reason would be due to the very tight shooting conditions of where I hunt deer mostly, and it's a friend of my hunting buddy so cutting shooting lanes is not an option.