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Old February 27, 2009, 05:29 AM   #26
Hawg Haggen
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The 44 cal revolver was loaded with a .440 RB or conical
Ya think? Lessee, .440 ball, .450 bore and chambers. What kept the balls from rolling out like a marble through a sewer pipe?

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I don't think there was much shaving of the ball that we do today making it dad-burn near a must to use a loading tool.
Had to have been shaving. I use a .454 ball with a hardness of 6. Pure lead is 5. I've never seen the need for a loading tool. A flat place to put stuff down helps but is not necessary.
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Old February 27, 2009, 06:14 AM   #27
simonkenton
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Here is how Robert E. Lee loaded his pistol.
He said to his slave, and body servant, Mack Lee, "Please load my pistol."
In fifteen minutes, the slave replied, "Marse Robert, yo pistol is loaded."
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Old February 27, 2009, 09:36 AM   #28
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Quote:
The 44 cal revolver was loaded with a .440 RB or conical
Ya, Your right, I did make a mistake on that.
My round balls are .448 and they are nice and snug and easy to load in frame.
I have loaded .451 "in frame" and I worry more about the lever/plunger as the ball is shaved.
Now the Lyman mold that my friend used to cast the .448 single cavity.was marked .451.
He made a mistake when he sent it back to Lyman because Lyman wouldn't give the mold back, but replaced it 1/2 price for a new .451 double cavity.
Good thing I have several hundred .448 RB's for plinking.
Another live and learn lesson.
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Old February 27, 2009, 01:57 PM   #29
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Quote:
Quote:
Ya think? Lessee, .440 ball, .450 bore and chambers. What kept the balls from rolling out like a marble through a sewer pipe?

Had to have been shaving. I use a .454 ball with a hardness of 6. Pure lead is 5. I've never seen the need for a loading tool. A flat place to put stuff down helps but is not necessary.
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+1 If you're having trouble shaving lead with the loading lever on your revolvers; you're using the wrong balls.
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Old March 7, 2009, 11:59 AM   #30
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G'day from down under

I know the longarm dudes used to carry the balls in their mouths and shoved in some powder an spit a ball down the muzzle.... but I cant imagine running around with a mouth full of .45's..... and you would need lips like on the simsons to spit them into the old army?? (wouldnt want to cough either)
I always thought too... how annoying would it have been if you just got the last cap on about to cock and fire...... and the bad guy shot you?! how frustrating
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Old April 9, 2009, 03:15 PM   #31
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BP paper cartridges

Hello to all. I'm new to this forum, but have been shooting blackpowder since the 1970s in Jr. High, and firearms in general since I was a wee little kid.

I consider myself to be one of those "authentic-progressives" when it comes to this hobby (I have been reenacting CW since 1998) and I try to look at history as it was really done back then.
To confirm previous statements, most used factory prepared combustible paper, (animal) skin or foil cartridges. The packages were purchased in 6 rounds to a package. The packages were either cardboard (similar to modern 20 rd. centerfire cartridge boxes) or a block of wood drilled with holes for the cartridges. Some packages were "waxed" to provide some waterproofing. This made them easy to carry in a pocket, or leather pouch on the pistol belt.
Do a search on the web and you'll easily find pictures to copy. I make my repoduction boxes and labels (drawn on Adobe Illustrator) while tracing originals from the web.

As for loading I found about 18 - 19 grains fits nicely into the paper "cup" I made for the cartridge. More than 20 grains and the connical ball may not seat down far enough to rotate the cylinder. It is about 2" long and tapers from the size of the chamber to about 1/8". I use cigarette paper - less is more, just enough to make the cartridge. As for lubing the ball (I fire both round and connical) is use about 50/50 parafin and crisco. I just roll the ball around in the (dried) lubricant and set asside to dry (about 30 minutes). Then place the ball on top of the powder charge in the paper cartridge. The lube is sticky enough to keep the paper snug on the ball so it doesn't fall apart.
This method is very convenient, easy to carry and authentic. If you don't want to mess with the cardboard boxes, you might consider keeping them in some sort of round tin for safety. I made about 36 rounds in one evening while watching a movie (um...Outlaw Josey Whales)

Have fun!

P.S
I have never had a "chain fire" from not packing grease over the chambers. If your ball is the right size, a small ring of lead should come off when loading, thus sealing the chamber.

- Jay Reid
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Old April 9, 2009, 03:19 PM   #32
Dreamer42
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Cartridges...continued

Sorry...forgot to mention I pack a Navy Arms 1851 .36 Navy. Great pistol.

- Jay Reid
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Old April 9, 2009, 03:26 PM   #33
Dingoboyx
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Welcome dreamer

You wouldn't want to accidently mistake one of those loads for a fag, and try to light up You wouldnt want to inhale, thats for sure

I shoot Bp here in Oz, Got 2 Rem Old Army's Stainless, 3 Blue Pietta C&B New army Steel frame, brass guards .44's and a Uberti Colt .45 Dragoon

Step 1/ I load'em powder in 6, then balls in 6 then cap 6.... then SHOOT 6 ....
step 2/ repeat step 1

Evidently in the old west, they could load on horseback at a gallop

I dont use a stand to load, I do everything off the bench, in my hands
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Old April 9, 2009, 07:30 PM   #34
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There's several video's on youtube on how to make paper cartridges, all methods i've seen look like it would take about an hour to make 6 of them though.
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Old April 9, 2009, 09:14 PM   #35
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It doesn't take that long but they are time consuming to make. Nice to have when you're shooting tho.
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Old April 9, 2009, 09:43 PM   #36
madcratebuilder
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I have seen the 'packaged' paper cartridges, even have some repros in some cases sets. I have made cartridges from rolling paper and rb.
My question is how prevalent were manufactured cartridges in more uncivilized areas? From reading period books I gather people carried several revolvers when they thought they would be in harms way. More so than carrying extra cylinders that has been made popular by movies.
Back to the OP, I load powder, grease cookie, then ball, a chamber at a time. I cap after all chambers are loaded.
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Old April 10, 2009, 01:58 PM   #37
Hawg Haggen
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IMHO paper cartridges were more of a military thing. They were loaded with conicals whereas most civilians used round balls with loose powder.
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Old April 10, 2009, 08:27 PM   #38
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What else can you use besides saltpeter to make combustible cartridges? I cant find any where I'm from.
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Old April 10, 2009, 08:47 PM   #39
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Surely the OTASCO store has stump remover.
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Old April 10, 2009, 08:51 PM   #40
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We haven't had an OTASCO in 25 years
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Old April 10, 2009, 09:03 PM   #41
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Sorry.

Bad example. I'll try to be less specific. Landscaping and garden supplies stores that sell stump removers containing potassium nitrate, KNO3.

Actually, I think OTASCO closed in 1988, but who's counting.
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Old April 10, 2009, 09:16 PM   #42
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HEY DINGO? what the hell is a fag?
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Old April 10, 2009, 09:34 PM   #43
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"What else can you use besides saltpeter to make combustible cartridges? I cant find any where I'm from."

Collodion, which is cellulose nitrate dissolved in alchol and ether.

In the 1800s Colt and possibly other companies provided unitized cartridges where the powder charge was adhered to the bullet with collodion.

Collodion was apparently used to coat a mold and the powder was poured into the mold and a bullet seated. When the collodion dried, you had a complete cartridge (sans cap, of course).

The collodion was tough enough that the cartridge would stand up to fairly rough handling, and more importantly, it was waterproof.

Upon ramming the bullet home, the force fractured the collodion "skin," which allowed the flash to ignite the powder.

Collodion cartridges survived right up to the advent of metallic cartridges.

More information, and a picture, at this site:

http://www.christchurchgunclub.org/html/cgc_art_pc1.htm
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Old April 10, 2009, 09:36 PM   #44
Mike Irwin
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HEY DINGO? what the hell is a fag?

The guy is Australian. That's a common nickname for a cigarette, after a faggot of wood.

He certainly doesn't mean a homosexual. That usage is particularly American.
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Old April 10, 2009, 09:47 PM   #45
long rider
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Well stufffff me blue sport, how ya going bruce, fairdincome.
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Old April 10, 2009, 09:56 PM   #46
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I just ordered 2lbs of saltpeter off of ebay. Also Mykeal i was born in 1988.
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Old April 10, 2009, 11:18 PM   #47
Hawg Haggen
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What else can you use besides saltpeter to make combustible cartridges? I cant find any where I'm from.
You don't need it for paper cartridges. You can use cigarette papers but tea bags work better.
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