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View Poll Results: What's you chainfire antidote?
Felt wad under the bullet 10 45.45%
Grease over the bullet 6 27.27%
Both grease and felt wad 0 0%
A slightly oversized ball 1 4.55%
Other (including just shooting it as is) 5 22.73%
Voters: 22. You may not vote on this poll

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Old July 25, 2021, 02:43 PM   #1
Pond, James Pond
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How do you top off your cylinders?

Kids and school vacations mean that I am all the more grateful for that 30 min gap to myself and chilling out recently has involved watching knowledgable people talk about BP stuff on YT.

One video got me thinking about how others might be loading their cylinders.

The issue in the video was safety and avoiding chain-fires.

The options provided were felt wads under the projectile or grease over the projectile.

There was even talk about putting nail varnish over the cap (but I think that was more about moisture ingress with long term storage, so not so relevant)

So, I'm curious as to which you opt for and why.
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Old July 25, 2021, 05:24 PM   #2
Ifishsum
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I use felt wads under the ball, mostly because they are convenient and not as messy as greasing over.
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Old July 25, 2021, 05:39 PM   #3
Hawg
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Felt wads.
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Old July 25, 2021, 06:33 PM   #4
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Bore buttons

Quote:
I use felt wads under the ball, mostly because they are convenient and not as messy as greasing over.
You will find a number of ways listed and as for me, it's felt wad/wads, under the ball or conical. ....

Be Safe !!!
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Old July 25, 2021, 06:35 PM   #5
bedbugbilly
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I haven\t used felt wads under RBs in years - I punch my wads from leather scraps from my leather work - about 1/8" thickness' I use a 3/8" arch for .36 and I honed a larger arch punch out to about .453 for my 44s - them I melt my homemade BP lub, toss 'em in and remove with tweezers - pat them with paper towel to remove excess lube and store in Altoid tins. They work great and about like a 1/8" over powder card. Depending on how much shooting I'm going to de, I may finger smear a tad of lube in the throats.

If I am shooting a conical - such as a "heeled" one, I usually just seat it on the powder and finger smear my lube in the throats.

So I guess I would have to say "other".
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Old July 26, 2021, 07:08 PM   #6
Smokin'Joe
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I just put a couple of drops of vegetable oil on top of the ball with an eye dropper. Never had a chain fire using this method.

Last edited by Smokin'Joe; July 26, 2021 at 09:00 PM.
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Old July 26, 2021, 11:29 PM   #7
Driftwood Johnson
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Howdy

I stopped slopping grease over the ball many, years ago.

On the rare occasion these days that I shoot Cap & Ball, I always place a felt wad between the powder and ball.
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Old July 27, 2021, 08:48 AM   #8
4V50 Gary
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Make sure when the ball is pushed in a ring is shaved. Chamber should be airtight then.
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Old July 27, 2021, 09:54 AM   #9
Hawg
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Originally Posted by 4V50 Gary View Post
Make sure when the ball is pushed in a ring is shaved. Chamber should be airtight then.
Should be but isn't always.
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Old July 27, 2021, 11:17 AM   #10
reinert
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Make sure those caps are the right size and fit tight on the nipples, too. I'm not a big C&B revolver shooter, but as the old adage goes, "I don't know, but I've been told," and that saying pertains to me, certain sure. I've "heard and been told" that a chain fire can happen through the nipples, too, so I'd be appreciative to hear any comments that way. When I shoot my C&B revolvers, I've just always used the felt wads; tried both dry and lubed (over the powder/under the bullet), and since I'm in no way a seasoned pistolero, I can't tell the difference on the target using dry or lubed. But then, I usually only go through a couple/three cylinders when I shoot the bugs out of the pistol, generally after I've been shooting whatever BP rifle I've got at the range on a certain day. I always make sure to see a shaved ring on the cylinder mouth when loading, too. No problems so far...
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Old July 27, 2021, 11:39 AM   #11
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Sam Colt discovered this, years ago

Quote:
I've "heard and been told" that a chain fire can happen through the nipples, too, so I'd be appreciative to hear any comments that way.
Not only is this a recent theory but historically true. In the early development of the colts. This was an obstacle that that forced a design change on later Colts. This is why you now see barriers between nipples. Given that, I still feel that chain-firing is still, is still possible. It has never happened to me but always aware that it's possible. ......

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Old July 27, 2021, 12:29 PM   #12
Hawg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reinert View Post
Make sure those caps are the right size and fit tight on the nipples, too. I'm not a big C&B revolver shooter, but as the old adage goes, "I don't know, but I've been told," and that saying pertains to me, certain sure. I've "heard and been told" that a chain fire can happen through the nipples, too, so I'd be appreciative to hear any comments that way.

I've got an old 58 Remington I bought new in 69. It has chain fired from the day I bought it but it only does it from the front. As long as I use lube or a wad it won't chain. I can even leave off all the caps except the one under the hammer and it won't chain. If I don't use lube or a wad it will let all six go every time. It does shave a good ring.
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Old July 27, 2021, 02:06 PM   #13
Pond, James Pond
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Quote:
way.

I've got an old 58 Remington I bought new in 69. It has chain fired from the day I bought it but it only does it from the front. As long as I use lube or a wad it won't chain. I can even leave off all the caps except the one under the hammer and it won't chain. If I don't use lube or a wad it will let all six go every time. It does shave a good ring.
Sounds like it would make for a very invigorating shooting session!
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Old July 27, 2021, 02:44 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pond, James Pond View Post
Sounds like it would make for a very invigorating shooting session!
Not really but it was frustrating at first. Especially to a 12 year old kid with nobody to ask and no internet back then. The guy at the gun store I bought it from wasn't even much help on loading it. Chain fires don't do any damage. The balls just go a few yards and drop. I did sometimes get stung by exploding caps but it was no big deal.
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Old July 27, 2021, 06:29 PM   #15
44 Dave
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I usually shoot paper cartridges with dip lubed bullets.
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Old July 28, 2021, 09:23 AM   #16
rodwhaincamo
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I’ve shot balls without wads or lube just fine through my ROA and reamed (.449”) Pietta NMA using T7 for hours at a time at the range. If I were shooting Olde Eynsford instead I’d use my punched felt wads, but it wouldn’t be to mitigate chainfires but deal with the fouling.

At the range with my father who used felt wads had his first chainfire. No way that came from the front. I’ve read of people stating their chambers aren’t a nice cylindrical chamber, and from the front it’s the only thing that makes sense as I don’t buy the theory that a grain of powder can cut a groove through a lead projectile, as I see any grains being pushed having to give up real estate seeing that there’s nothing to force the grain to stay put and act against a hard substance like lead.
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Old July 28, 2021, 03:28 PM   #17
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Really helpful

My Pietta target model 58 came from the factory with a poorly machined cylinder.
Two cylinder bores were tighter than a nuns kiss. The other 4 would not shave a ring of lead.
While I had to pay the freight out, it was replaced by the importer rather than repaired.
The replacement is excellent. I don't shoot it enough.
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Old July 30, 2021, 12:33 PM   #18
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For target shooting at the range, using .457 round balls in my Ruger Old Army: (with reduced loads of Triple Seven Triple F), I use uncooked 1 Minute Cream of Wheat as a filler, then I top off the bullet with an un-melted mixture of two thirds Butter Crisco and one third pure Beeswax.

I melt the Crisco an beeswax in a soup can in a pot of boiling water, then I pour the solution in a another can and let cool. I use a plastic knife to seal the bullet.

The beeswax helps keep the Crisco from melting during a shooting session. I load the powder charge with an empty 357 round shell casing --- Same goes for the Cream of Wheat.

A lobster fork helps in prying off jammed caps.

During snow-covered days at the range...the little songbirds sometime come and eat the spent Cream of Wheat off the top of the snow.
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Old August 2, 2021, 11:14 AM   #19
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I was experimenting with LIGHT loads in .357, to shoot Cowboy Action.
To get better consistency, with 1.8 gr loads, I added 8gr of corn meal on top of the powder.

At a Cowboy shoot, as we walked between stations, I mentioned getting hungry. One of the guys nearby said, " i must be getting hungry, too. That last stage, I swear I could smell hot cornbread. "
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Old August 2, 2021, 07:45 PM   #20
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I tumble my balls in some Alox lube. I don't fuss with wads or gobs of messy grease. I chamfered the entry of my cylinder bores, and I run a .454 ball in my Pietta 1858. They are a real bear to seat, I actually can't seat with the under barrel lever, I made my own press and it works much easier and I get a nice defined lead swage ring after pressing in my balls and it's a very tight fit. I also like to use a blast of compressed nitrogen (computer keyboard cleaner) to ensure there is no residual powder kernels on the face of the cylinder.

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Old August 3, 2021, 09:57 AM   #21
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I’ve been loading my 2013 Pietta NMA with .457” balls or .455” bullets using my loading lever assembly. Eventually I had it reamed to .449” and chamfered, but it never was too difficult to load. Pure lead?
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Old August 3, 2021, 10:44 AM   #22
Pahoo
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Just a suggestion

Quote:
I punch my wads from leather scraps from my leather work - about 1/8" thickness'
As a side note, I have made my own wads out of paper "older" egg cartons. You can also use the drink carriers from the take-out windows. Just soften them up with a bit of water and form them up into balls or large ball. Roll them out to desired thickness, let dry and punch them out to the required diameter. I started making these mostly for BP shotgun loading and progressed to C&B. Egg cartons and carrier trays are made from newspapers. ??? .....

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Old August 3, 2021, 06:51 PM   #23
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I use Crisco and a wax toilet seal melted together. Less expensive than Bore Butter.
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Old August 4, 2021, 11:16 AM   #24
rodwhaincamo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pahoo View Post
As a side note, I have made my own wads out of paper "older" egg cartons. You can also use the drink carriers from the take-out windows. Just soften them up with a bit of water and form them up into balls or large ball. Roll them out to desired thickness, let dry and punch them out to the required diameter. I started making these mostly for BP shotgun loading and progressed to C&B. Egg cartons and carrier trays are made from newspapers. ??? .....

Be Safe !!!
Very interesting! A few questions if you don’t mind.

1) You mentioned beginning for shotgun use. Were these just over cards or did they function as a cushion wad?

2) So you take this, wet it to what, a bit over thoroughly damp?, and then roll out to the thickness you seek. So it just because a pliable mush?

3) Is this the same material one might find as a molded form-fit packaging we often find with electronics, wine bottle shipments, etc.?
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Old August 5, 2021, 06:35 PM   #25
Pahoo
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School days

Quote:
1) You mentioned beginning for shotgun use. Were these just over cards or did they function as a cushion wad?
Over powder wads. May want to double up on these. You could use as over-shot wads but prefer a more sturdy cardboard material.

Quote:
2) So you take this, wet it to what, a bit over thoroughly damp?, and then roll out to the thickness you seek. So it just because a pliable mush?
When I said roll them out I meant roll and press them and make sure they are Stiff and dry. It's more like a cake then a mush. Hard to explain. Also, different sources require handing. Most of what I work with are grey and have also used brown. ...
Quote:
3) Is this the same material one might find as a molded form-fit packaging we often find with electronics, wine bottle shipments, etc.?
Yes sir although most of what I have used comes from food products. I got the idea from school memories, working with paper manchette. I don't think they teach this hand-on skills anymore ......

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