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Old November 14, 2012, 05:52 PM   #1
wachtelhund1
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Lyman Mustang .50 cal and Blackhorn 209 black powder subititute

Has anyone use Blackhorn 209 powder in a Lyman Mustang Breakopen .50 cal muzzel loader. I just received my Lyman muzzel loader today and tried to fire it. Shot three CCI 209M primers and all fail to ignite the charge. Prior to trying to shoot I had cleaned the barrel and breech plug. Also ran a super fine drill bit through the breech plug. Anybody else run into this problem.
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Old November 14, 2012, 07:49 PM   #2
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Did you fire a primer before you loaded it to burn out any oil left behind?
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Old November 14, 2012, 08:01 PM   #3
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First the practicles and then, the particulars !!

I'm going to say something that you already know and that is; You should not be having this problem. If you followed all the basics, then perhaps the next step, is to contact Lyman and see what they have to say. .....

Now then, I personally have not gotten into the Blackhorn-209 but some of the folks around here, that are, are drilling out the vents, on the nipples. I don't recal what size drill but can find out, if you wish. .....

Be Safe !!!
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Old November 14, 2012, 08:34 PM   #4
wachtelhund1
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Quote:
I'm going to say something that you already know and that is; You should not be having this problem. If you followed all the basics, then perhaps the next step, is to contact Lyman and see what they have to say. .....

Now then, I personally have not gotten into the Blackhorn-209 but some of the folks around here, that are, are drilling out the vents, on the nipples. I don't recal what size drill but can find out, if you wish. .....
HH, Yes I did fire a primer for to dry out the breech and barrel.

Pahoo, I've hunted with a CVA Kodiak Magnum for the last five years. I know the basic and then some. It was too late to contact Lyman on the east coast when I was trying to shoot. I did have a call into Western and was waiting for their call back when I made my first post.

I later talked to Doug at Western. He said the Lyman breech plug design was not compatible with their Blackhorn 209 powder and recommended I try 777. He also has a Lyman Mustang muzzel loader and has to use 777.

Tomorrow I will be taking to Lyman to see if they have a different breech plug that will work with Blackhorn 209 powder.
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Old November 14, 2012, 09:07 PM   #5
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Western Powders is one of the companies that makes an CVA breech plug for reliable ignition of Blackhorn powder. And the bullet maker Lehigh is another.
While the thread below describes making a breech plug with a drilled out screw as a replaceable vent, there's also relevant information about how to modify one's own breech plug to ignite Black horn better.
If you read through the thread, it's mentioned that a vent hole measuring between .28 and .35 can work well for igniting Blackhorn.
However the length of the flash hole may also be an issue.
One method is to dish out a small powder chamber of about 1/4" deep in front of the flash hole. It would expose more powder to the primer flash, and possibly also reduce the length that the flash needs to travel.
Building a good breech plug for ignition is both a science and an art.
And that's why CVA charges $20 to buy their special breech plug for Blackhorn 209 whereas TC guns have a good enough breech plug right out of the box. While others simply modify their own plug by buying a spare breech plug and drilling it themselves with a drill press and maybe a Dremel.

http://www.huntingnet.com/forum/blac...questions.html

For instance

Quote:
If one modifies the breech plug supplied with CVA rifles, one can do 2 things that make for a flash channel with a larger volume. Simplest is to drill the flash channel larger using a 5/32" drill. Next, make a chamber on the powder end about 1/4" deep, and tap the flame channel so it will accept a standard vent liner. After doing these steps the modified breech plug is 100% reliable igniting Blackhorn powder. This modified breech plug will have a flash channel with far more volume than the 'made for Blackhorn' breech plugs. Another advantage this modified plug has over the Blackhorn plug is, it has a replaceable flash hole, in the form of a vent liner.
Quote:
Lehigh liners are hardened and designed to wear longer. The flash hole is cut to be 0.031 +/-. This is less than than Western Powders wanted for the ignition of BH-209 but I believe over time it has been proven that it is very effecient for the ignition of BH. I my self have used the .031 flash hole, shot Remington 209-4's primer (410 primer) with BH and have 0 ignition problems with the powder.

A second advantage of the Lehigh might be two fold, with 0.031" flash hole and the domed shape of the external portion of the vent liner it helps reduce blow back pressure felt on the nose of the primer or blow back pressure felt in the breech.
Quote:
New vents are purchased with flash hole of 0.031" to 0.033" depending on brand. This, to me seems too large. The pictured vent is home made, and has a 0.028" flash hole. It works good. My thinking is why start large, when time and shooting will get you there anyway. It is my understanding that commercial vents are really made and sold for smokeless shooters. It is my opinion that commercial vent flash holes are too large. My home made vents have never failed to instantaneously ignite BH209 powder in sub-zero weather. Experiment has demonstrated that a 0.028" flash hole ignites powder just as efficiently as a 0.033" flash hole.

Last edited by arcticap; November 16, 2012 at 11:01 AM.
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Old November 15, 2012, 10:10 AM   #6
wachtelhund1
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articap,

Thanks for the reply. However, the design of the Lyman BP and CVA are completely different. Western does not even have a moded Lyman BP that will work with their powder. The link you provided got me thinking. I might have to design a new vent for the Lyman BP that will go completely though and hold the 209 primer. One problem that Doug from Western told me is the headspace on the Lyman BP is to large. They consider this to be what they call an unsupport BP.

Last edited by wachtelhund1; November 15, 2012 at 11:02 AM.
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Old November 15, 2012, 08:07 PM   #7
wachtelhund1
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Arcticap, Actually I was misstaken. The CVA and Lyman BP design are very similar. Last night I spent several hours reading post about BPs and modifying them. This morning I read your post and then revewed several from last night. Even though Doug at Western Powder said their Blackhorn 209 powder was not compatible with the Lyman Mustang ML. I was determined to try some more to get it shooting.

Doug had said the BP design was to large, holding the Primer loose and had too much head spacing. Allowing the prime to slide back when fired. I couldn't do anything about the BP size, but the head spacing??

This morning I pulled the BP from my CVA Kodiak Magnum and compared the two. The Lyman flash channel was much smaller than the CVA. I could easily slip a 7/64 drill bit into the CVA flash channel, but not in the Lyman. So I drilled out the Lyman BP flash channel with the 7/64 drill bit. I left the vent hole as is.

To correct for the head spacing,: The lyman BP has a small flange just before the the 1/2 nut, which butts against the barrel when tighten. Took a small piece of thin electrical solder, cut it just long enough to wrap it around the BP with out overlapping the ends. I screwed the BP in and tigthen it. When I got near the end I went slowly, I put a primer in and placed a small drill bit on top of the primer. I tighten the BP so that the drill bit rested on the breech face and I could just barely see light between the primer and drill bit. I tried closing the action several times, no problem with the primer. This eliminated the extra head spacing and held the primer in plcae when fired. I pulled the BP and measured the solder. It had been compressed to a tickness of .0026. I repaced the BP with a ring of solder.

I then took it out in my yard where I have a rifle range. First I fired several CCI 209M primers. They sounded louder. So I loaded the gun with 50 grains of Blackhorn 209 powder (weighed on a powder scale), a saboted bullet and another primer. I aimmed and fired the gun. The gun fire hitting the 2" orange dot.

I moved back to 100 yards. Second shot was a hang fire. Shots 3 through 10 all fired fine. Eleven was another hang fire. I held the gun up towards the sun and tried looking through the flash channel and vent hole, it was plugged. So I cleaned the flash channel with the 7/64 drill bit an blew from the end of the barrel clearing the vent hole and flash channel. I fired nine more shots, all normal with no hang fires.

During the firing session, I would weigh three powder charges in my gun room, go out and fire them. Then go in and weigh three more. While in the house a Lyman customer service rep returned my call. He proceded to tell me that the Blackhorn 209 powder was not compaible with their ML, that they had done numerous tests and it just would work. After seferal minutes, I interrupted hime and said I had just fired a dozen shots with BH 209 powder. I paused for several seconds and then asked what did I do to get it to fire.

I told him the Primer pocket had to be about .002" smaller, the primer nipple had to be about .0023 to .0025" longer. Flash channel about .1130". All easly done in their machining process.

That ended my firing for the day, but the two hang fires were in the back of my mind. I wanted to go larger to ensure I had good ignition in cold weather. So I looked up the next size larger drill bit. My 7/64 drill bit measured at 0.109375", a #34 drill is something like 0.1103"; a #33 drill bit is 0.1130". This afternoon I purchased a # 33 drill bit and again drill out the flash channel in the Lyman BP. I haven't shot it yet, but the # 33 drill bit fit into my CVA BP.

This had been the first time I used Blackhorn 209 powder. My thoughts: It was cleaner. I fired ten shots before swabing the barrel, never could have done that with Hodgdon Proydex pellets. It seemed more accurate with the little firing that I did.
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Old November 16, 2012, 12:11 AM   #8
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Perhaps this will help? 7/64 is pretty small IMO. I would go with an 1/8" or a 5/32" flash channel.
http://gandersmuzzleloadingblog.blog...ent-shims.html

You want at least a .005" crush fit on the primer to be blow by free. Losing all those hot gasses is what makes BH209 extremely dependable and almost flawless.
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Old November 16, 2012, 12:37 AM   #9
wachtelhund1
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FG, thanks, I wasn't sure about how large to go. But, I can do an 1/8" if needed and a crush on the primer if needed also. Tomorrow, I try what I have now. these mods don't take much time.
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Old November 16, 2012, 12:21 PM   #10
arcticap
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Maybe your Lyman doesn't need them, but there's O-rings that fit inside of the primer pockets of CVA and TC breech plugs which serves to shim the primer and to seal the primer pocket from blow back by creating a very slight crush fit on the primer when the receiver is closed. One just needs to be careful that the primer is not too tight and will not go off when the action is closed.
The O-rings are 4.5 X 1 mm wide #9262K611:

http://www.mcmaster.com/#catalog/118/3490/=k77on0

It's mentioned in these threads:

http://www.huntingnet.com/forum/blac...lled-apex.html

http://www.huntingnet.com/forum/blac...ader-help.html

http://www.huntingnet.com/forum/blac...d-space-2.html

Last edited by arcticap; November 17, 2012 at 04:26 AM.
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Old November 16, 2012, 09:44 PM   #11
wachtelhund1
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Arcficap, Thanks for the links. I had read about the O rings in my research on BPs. And had forgot where they were. I may end up trying them if needed.
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