View Full Version : black Powder?

December 5, 2010, 02:59 PM
I am another newcomer to the black powder community and have a question that hasn't been answered to my satisfaction yet. I have an 1851 reproduction Navy revolver and in my haste to begin using it, I purchased what I thought was black powder but evidently isn't. It is "Jim shockey's Gold" and listed beneath the title are the words "black powder substitute". Can I safely use this powder in my pistol? According to the container, I can use it on a 1 to 1 by volume basis for black powder.

December 5, 2010, 03:02 PM
Yes, just follow the directions. 1/1 for BP. There are several BP substitutes out there these days. Have fun!

Doc Hoy
December 5, 2010, 03:06 PM
They are as much as 15% off with regard to the energy per volume they generate.

You can use them but must become accustomed to the load you need to be using.

Good technique is to start with a light load and work up.

Doc Hoy
December 5, 2010, 03:08 PM
....Welcome to the committee.

This is definitely the right place.

December 5, 2010, 03:33 PM
Let me emphasize that black powder substitutes may be used in a 1:1 volume replacement for black powder, not a 1:1 weight replacement for black powder
Most all of the substitutes are considerably less dense than real black powder and a 1:1 weight replacement will result in a serious overload.

December 5, 2010, 04:42 PM
thanks to all of you who took the time to answer my question!

December 5, 2010, 05:21 PM
Real black powder can be hard to find in a lot of places, mostly because of the BATF regulations regarding black powder. Most retailers don't want to deal with the special powder magazine and other stuff you have to go through to sell the stuff. If they have the stuff, you usually have to ask for the stuff and the salesman has to get it out of the special powder magazine in back of the store somewhere.
I shoot real black almost exclusively but I attend a lot muzzleloading shoots where I can buy the stuff from vendors. I also win a lot of my black powder at prize shoots.
Track of the Wolf sells real black powder on-line but it involves a pretty large minimum order and haz-mat fees.

Our local Cabelas had Goex BP for a while but I guess the in-line sabot bullet crowd just wasn't interested enough in it to justify keeping it in stock.

December 5, 2010, 05:24 PM
I think Powder Inc. has the best deal.

December 5, 2010, 10:06 PM
I have a 1858 Remington New Army and a 1860 Colt Army on the way to me. I ordered some Hodgdon Triple 7 FFFG at the same time. Am I going to be okay using it in both guns?

December 5, 2010, 10:33 PM

Yes you can safely use it in both guns.

see post #12

December 6, 2010, 05:53 AM
reduce loads of 777 by 15% and it doesn't need compression. In fact it doesn't like compression but cant have an air space either.

December 6, 2010, 08:12 AM
Folks have mentioned reducing loads by 15%. It is perfectly safe to use Triple 7 on a 1/1 volume basis and it will provide higher velocity than the same volume of BP. However, if you want to maintain the same velocity, reduce the load volume my 15%. Here is what Hodgdon has to say about it from their website....
"All charges of Triple Seven or Pyrodex should be measured by VOLUME not weight. A simple, adjustable blackpowder measure is the correct tool for this job. All loads listed in this brochure are measured by VOLUME.
Triple Seven is a high energy product designed to provide the muzzleloading hunter with higher velocities when used in the same VOLUME as blackpowder. To duplicate a blackpowder load velocity using Triple Seven, you must decrease the powder".

December 6, 2010, 09:11 AM
I live in NY and real BP is hard to find. I use nothing but Triple 7 & and Pyrodex P. Never had a problem with either using loads between 25 and 35 grains. I tried the Pyrodex pellets but they seemed hard to light.I get more reliable ignition with granular .
I have read alot about reducing loads 15% for T7 but really don't think it is anything to worry about in a pistol w/ either Cap and Ball or Cartridge.I can't tell the difference between 35 grains of either one .
Clear advantage is that pyrodex is cheaper so if more bang for the buck is a goal shoot Pyrodex.

December 6, 2010, 09:25 AM
Hmmmm....The info about the 15% reduction is a little troubling; since I can't seem to find any info that agrees on what a "standard" load should be. I have already ordered a powder flask that throws a non-adjustable charge (25.5 gr). I considered ordering the adjustable powder measure from Cabela's; but the customer reviews weren't very positive.

Any recommendations on an adjustable powder measure that works as advertised?

Doc Hoy
December 6, 2010, 11:25 AM
I think the thing to focus on is not so much how much powder (measured in grains) you are using but how you can consistently throw the same charge for every shot.

When I first started shooting, I used three powder measure that I made. I had a .38 caliber shell, a 45 acp, and a 308 taken off at the shoulder. I used the .38 for .36 caliber revolvers, the .45 for .44 caliber revolvers and the .308 for rifles and single shot pistols. I never really knew what the weight of charge was but I knew I got consistent charges.

The post on another thread is the first time in my life when I actually read what those casings provided in the way of powder weight/volume.

December 6, 2010, 11:54 AM
I tend to shoot whatever is the most accurate load, not the loudest:D
For me that's about 28 Gr of FFg substitute. This is below any max for a steel-frame gun & measures neatly from a .357 case, or my powder flask that has a (nominal) 30 grain spout. I say nominal because when measured it dispenses 28 grains.
I use a separate, adjustable powder measure between the flask & the chamber for a couple of reasons, one Doc will probably agree with more than the other.

It gives me a safety margin in the rare event of ignited powder, it allows me to visually check how well I've measured the dispensed charge from the flask as sometimes the powder will "bridge" & not drop a full load, no matter how I shake & tap the thing.
I'd go with the flask & an adjustable measure for that reason.

Doc Hoy
December 6, 2010, 01:33 PM
You need one of my ingenius clear plastic, calibrated, telescoping, continuously variable, double overhead cam, four on the floor, powder measure attachments for the CVA1400 or Treso flasks.

December 9, 2010, 09:34 AM
Hmmmm....The info about the 15% reduction is a little troubling; since I can't seem to find any info that agrees on what a "standard" load should be. I have already ordered a powder flask that throws a non-adjustable charge (25.5 gr). I considered ordering the adjustable powder measure from Cabela's; but the customer reviews weren't very positive.

Any recommendations on an adjustable powder measure that works as advertised?
The reason you can't find any info on what a standard load should be is because there is no such thing as a standard load. Every gun is different, and there are many different ways of loading and powders. The one thing to keep in mind is that, with one exception, you cannot physically overload a cap and ball revolver. The one exception is NEVER, NEVER USE SMOKELESS POWDER IN A BP GUN!
In other words, any bp or bp substitute load is safe; some are more accurate than others, some make more smoke, some make more noise, but all are safe. I do not agree with the statement about measuring substitute powders by weight causing 'serious overloads'. Such a practice can lead to inaccuracies in velocity and thus point of impact, but it's not unsafe.

And worrying about measuring to 1/2 a grain is overkill. Measuring to a tolerance of 5 grains should be plenty good enough for all but target competition shooters.

I use a variable measure with a funnel attached to the end. It's marked in 5 grain increments from 0 to 100 grains and is accurate to within +/- 2 grains of volume. However, as has been mentioned, how much powder isn't nearly as important as being consistent and using the same amount each and every time. If you do that you will know what to expect every time, and you can set your sight picture with confidence.

December 9, 2010, 12:29 PM

Perfectly sized for revolver chambers and small-bore rifles. Accurately measures loads from 5-45 grains. Solid Brass. By Traditions
Description Order No. Price Order Now
Revolver Powder Measure
5 - 45 Grains 53-1307 $8.75
From here:

Works perfectly for me. You can use it with the flask/measure you ordered, either by using it to double-check the dispensed weight (what I do) or you can use it as an actual measure by just pouring from the flask without measuring till it's full.