View Single Post
Old December 5, 2019, 03:23 PM   #1
Senior Member
Join Date: March 2, 2014
Posts: 6,873
New CVA Paramount--a new benchmark set?

OK--first order of business--before anyone gnashes their teeth, pulls their hair out or jumps out a 50 story window over the fact I'm posting a review of a muzzleloader on a conventional cartridge-firing rifle forum--allow me to explain why: The performance of this new gun and bullet are so compelling it may be worth considering even compared to it's smokeless powder brethren.

This rifle is engineered by the fine Spanish stable of Bergara, so it's nothing like any of CVA's previous offerings. They even developed a new high BC powerbelt bullet exclusively for the Paramount--though it can be fired in other muzzleloaders as long as they are 45 cal. The gun is referred to a "magnum muzzleloader" since it's capable handling pressures (hence velocities) significantly beyond other typical break-open muzzleloaders.

Yesterday was my first time firing it, so it was mostly getting the "swing of things" and getting my Nightforce SHV tuned to it. Using CVA's range of 140 to 150 gr by volume recommended loads I was able to easily exceed 2400 fps and well over 3000 ftlbs of energy at the muzzle using the recommended blackhorn 209 powder. After analyzing the labradar data, I noticed I wasn't getting a good match for my grs by weight velocities for what CVA says should be equivalent to the grs by volume measures. This became immediately apparent today when I took the gun out for the second time and after firing a couple of shots noticed the discrepancy, so I emptied my pre-measured charges into a by-volume measuring tube (a rather inexact science) and used that to fire the last three shots. Here are the labradar results along with the target. I know it's a lame excuse (I'm the master, after all) but I think I could have done better with a more consistent powder loading. As is, three of the bullets overlapped forming a tidy .5 group at 100 yds--notice on the stats how well the bullet retains both energy and velocity. My impression after just two days of firing is that the sweet spot is better defined by velocity, which I think (so far) is somewhere around 2380 fps +/-.

The rifle has excellent balance, probably due in part to it's somewhat hefty weight, but can easily be fired free-recoil with no fear of any muzzle rise. The felt recoil I would put as about the same as a fairly potent 45-70 load. Not something you'd want to shoot all day, but reasonable enough IMO.

The blackhorn shoots remarkably cleanly--I had no problems firing 7 bullets in a row yesterday without cleaning or swabbing of the bore, and didn't do any today either. Swapping out the large rifle primers and recharging the powder and bullet is very fast compared to my older TC Impact.

I'm very, very impressed by this new rifle--I think it's a significant step forward in muzzleloader performance. Oh, and no FFL transfer required, you can have it delivered right to your doorstep.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 280 powerbelt 140 gr vol blackhorns.jpg (151.7 KB, 231 views)
File Type: jpg 280 powerbelt 140 gr vol blackhorn labradar stats.jpg (33.9 KB, 227 views)
If you’re ever hiking in the woods and you get lost, just look up and find the brightest star in the sky and you’ll know which way space is.
I am NOT an expert--I do not have any formal experience or certification in firearms use or testing; use any information I post at your own risk!

Last edited by stagpanther; December 5, 2019 at 10:53 PM.
stagpanther is offline  
Page generated in 0.03426 seconds with 9 queries