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Old March 27, 2011, 07:00 PM   #18
Bill Akins
Senior Member
Join Date: August 28, 2007
Location: Hudson, Florida
Posts: 1,130
MyKeal wrote:
I think you misunderstand the effect tapping the measure has. It doesn't compress the powder, it settles it.
Well, I guess we could call it "settling", "compacting" or "compressing" whenever a powder's grains are manipulated to be brought closer together with less air space between them to where it takes up less space than it did when first poured. True I am not forcing it into compression with a plunger but whether I call it "compressing", "compacting" or you call it "settling" you understand what I meant. I.E. the powder takes up less space when the measure is tapped downward forcing the grains closer together and eliminating air space between them.

MyKeal wrote:
Once the grains have settled and reached equilibrium, whether it's one tap or two, they will not settle more.
Your experience may have differed from mine. My experience has been that I have had to tap the powder measure at least 4 or 5 times to get the first pour "settled" which makes more space for me to pour more powder. Then I have to tap the powder measure again 4 or 5 times to settle the additional powder I poured. Then that second dose of powder I poured has settled so that I add a teeny bit more and then I tap it a few times again to get that last pour bit level with the top of the measure. That is a time consuming pain. I quit doing that and now just pour once to fill the measure and level the powder off and then load it. Of course that means I am putting less powder in than if I had tapped the powder measure multiple times to "compact", "settle" or "compress" the powder. But that's okay, I like light loads especially since my revolvers are nickel and since I recently found that the magnet don't stick on the frames, they are most likely brass under nickel, so light loads are better for them anyway.

MyKeal wrote:
And the amount of force used to tap the measure has nothing to do with how the grains settle - they settle into place by gravity, not by the shock impact on the side of the tube.
Again, perhaps your experience differs from mine. But it has been my experience that the amount of force I use to tap the powder measure downward does affect how the grains settle. If I just lightly tap it they do not settle as low as if I had smartly tapped it. Or it takes more light taps to do the same amount of settling compared to smart taps that settle it quicker. My opinion is that the shock of the tapping impact on the measuring tube does cause the grains to settle more so than gravity does. Because if it was just gravity making the grains settle, then there would be no need to tap the measure and the grains would gravity settle on their own when first poured.

MyKeal wrote:
And besides, if you're benching the gun, why are you in such a big hurry?
It's not that I'm in a big hurry, but if I have a loading technique that works for me and does away with multiple tapping, pouring more into the measure, multiple tapping again, pouring more into the measure again, multiple tapping again and then FINALLY loading the first chamber of the cylinder, and doing that for EACH of six chambers,.... and said technique saves me time and motion (and lessens the chances of spilling powder with multiple taps) then I think that's a good thing. Works for me anyway. Each to their own.

"This is my Remy and this is my Colt. Remy loads easy and topstrap strong, Colt balances better and never feels wrong. A repro black powder revolver gun, they smoke and shoot lead and give me much fun. I can't figure out which one I like better, they're both fine revolvers that fit in my leather".
"To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target".
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