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Old May 4, 2011, 07:11 AM   #8
Senior Member
Join Date: October 8, 2006
Location: Northern Michigan
Posts: 2,772
Rachen's use of the term 'smokeless' in the title to this thread is accurate but only in an historical context. Strictly speaking, 'smokeless' powders are simply those that produce remarkably less smoke than traditional black powders; they have an important place in the history of shooting materials. However, contemporary usage of the term implies powders made from nitrocellulose materials.

It's well known that contemporary smokeless powders have no place in black powder firearms, yet it seems every year someone makes that dangerous decision; whether the motivation is simply ignorance (or perhaps stupidity) or misunderstanding that someone meant historical, non-nitrocellulose smokeless powder can be used in a black powder gun, it still happens.

Rachen's parenthetical definition of 'smokeless' as 'sulferless', and his opening caveat are well considered, and I have no concern that the current TFL membership will mistake it or his use of the term smokeless. But if it's made available through an archive (via a sticky or other device) I suggest it include an short explanation that these formulas are not the nitro-cellulose based contemporary smokeless powders, etc. Who knows whether future members, or even nonmembers reaching the material through a search engine, will have the same understanding that we do.
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