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Old December 1, 2019, 05:22 PM   #1
Prof Young
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Muzzle loading and cleaning bore . . .

So, I've been watching muzzle loader "how to" videos and it seems like they promote cleaning the bore every one to three shots even after the gun is broken in. I'm getting back in to muzzle loading and don't recall this practice from the first time around. We are talking pyrodex here, not black powder.

Talk to me, please.

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Old December 1, 2019, 05:33 PM   #2
mehavey
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Don't "clean" the bore.
Just mouth-dampen a patch and run it down and back out -- which will clean out 90% of the crud and soften the rest.
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Old December 1, 2019, 05:58 PM   #3
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The only reason I used a ML was for hunting. That first shot was always going to be on a spotlessly clean barrel. Therefore, I cleaned between every single shot - not a detailed cleaning, but a wet patch followed by a couple of dry patches.
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Old December 1, 2019, 06:38 PM   #4
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What mehavey said.
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Old December 2, 2019, 06:11 AM   #5
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Lots of different opinions on the practice of cleaning between shots, how and when to do it, etc... I shoot regular monthly matches, and don't clean the bore until I go home. I do use a fairly damp patch with a liquid lube though and it sort of wipes the bore everytime you load another ball. This has worked for me for many years, and hopefully I have a few more left to continue...
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Old December 2, 2019, 09:28 AM   #6
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If you're shooting an in-line ML, just use Blackhorn 209 and don't bother cleaning between shots. You can shoot at least twenty shots without cleaning and no accuracy loss. If you're using a traditional sidelock, cleaning is required for consistent accuracy. Any amount of residue left in the barrel will make loading more difficult and it will also make for some wild groups. If you use T7 you can get away with a true "spit" cleaning patch followed by a dry patch between shots.
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Old December 2, 2019, 11:57 AM   #7
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Swabbing between rounds

Quote:
I do use a fairly damp patch with a liquid lube though and it sort of wipes the bore everytime you load another ball.
Prof,
You will get a number of varying techniques when working M/L's. I do know a competition shooter that actually cleans between round but personally not needed. Most folks I know, do not. I refer to what I do as swabbing rather than cleaning between round. When teaching a class, I listen to what the M/L is telling me and we do a cursory cleaning as needed or about every six to seven rounds. However, we do swab between rounds with a lubed patch and never a dry one. I use seasoning patches between rounds. There are additional benefits to swabbing between rounds aside from keeping the fouling soft.

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Old December 2, 2019, 03:58 PM   #8
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depends

Depends a whole lot on what and how much your shooting, charge weight, and what one is using for patch or projectile lube.

I've got a .32 caplock that absolutely demands a swab patch every other shot when shooting a patched round ball. Fail to swab and balls get VERY hard to seat in short order. For consistency shot to shot, I just swab one time between every shot.

My .50 caplocks are much more forgiving and I can shoot 4-5 or more shots before seating a conical or patched ball becomes difficult.

I've used Wonderlube for bore and patches for some time as I bought several jars of the stuff years ago, I don't know if it is still available. The various tube lubes like Borebutter are likely more the same. A spit patch works in a pinch, but I don't like the idea of leaving a wet, spit lubed ball in the bore over period of time if I'm not going to shoot just right away again.
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Old December 3, 2019, 05:30 PM   #9
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I have two muzzleloaders. Both are CVA Optima V2's but one is a rifle and one is a pistol. The rifle can take multiple shots of Triple 7 powder but the pistol has to have a moist patch ran down it every other time otherwise it's impossible to run the ram rod down.

It's not a thorough cleaning. Just moist the pad, run it down and reload.
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Old December 4, 2019, 12:17 PM   #10
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I have a Pedersoli Gibbs that, for best accuracy at long range, wants a patch dampened with distilled water between each shot.

I have a .36 caliber flintlock that, when used with 20 grains of powder, a lubricated over-powder wad, and a lubricated patch, never needs to be cleaned during a day's shooting.

And I have a bunch of guns in between, as well.

So in my opinion, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Each individual gun will tell you what it wants.
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Old December 4, 2019, 04:27 PM   #11
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Just Asking ???

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I have a Pedersoli Gibbs that, for best accuracy at long range, wants a patch dampened with distilled water between each shot.
Not questioning but just asking; Where did you come up with the use of distilled-water?? Personally I have never read it or seen it. Maybe I'm missing something. ….

Quote:
So in my opinion, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Each individual gun will tell you what it wants.
So true !!!

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Old December 4, 2019, 10:16 PM   #12
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The distilled water business has been popularized - if that is the right word for such an obscure pursuit - by Dick Trenk, who's instructions for loading were included, for a time, with each purchase of a Pedersoli Gibbs reproduction. Apparently that is no longer their practice, but the verbiage is still available at Research Press online.
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Old December 4, 2019, 10:22 PM   #13
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Quote:
Don't "clean" the bore.
Just mouth-dampen a patch and run it down and back out -- which will clean out 90% of the crud and soften the rest.
That has been my experience ..... FWIW, I only shoot BP ...... I can't speak to the subsitutes.

It only takes getting a ball stuck one time and you'll get religious about swabbing the bore........
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Old December 5, 2019, 11:38 AM   #14
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The good old "Learning Curve"

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It only takes getting a ball stuck one time and you'll get religious about swabbing the bore........
That too but we are talking about swabbing between rounds and range or field rod can and will get stuck, using a dry patch. These adventures sure do add to your skills. I don't get too excited about "Dry-Balls" but those stuck Rods, will test you. .…….

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Old December 5, 2019, 06:36 PM   #15
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NEVER dry-patch a dirty muzzle-loading BP bore.
Ever.....
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