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Old August 12, 2022, 05:57 AM   #1
reynolds357
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Black Powder substitute?

To someone who took more chemistry than me....
Why can't someone make a truly non corrosive black powder substitute?
The closest thing I know of is Blackhorn, but it is still corrosive once burned.
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Old August 12, 2022, 06:44 AM   #2
BobCat45
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This is not non-corrosive but it is what I found when I searched for "golden powder"

https://pyrosource.fandom.com/wiki/Golden_Powder

Also https://www.amateurpyro.com/forums/t...golden-powder/

I only recalled the name, and that ascorbic acid was what gave it the color; one of the explosives / pyrotechnic guys at work gave me a paper about it years ago, which I will look for on my computer and see if it is the same stuff.

Sorry it is not much help but maybe someone will read this and recall more.
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Old August 12, 2022, 10:24 AM   #3
Jim Watson
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The legend was that the initial Pyrodex formulation was not corrosive but they dirtied it up so as to be accepted by NMLRA as requiring wet cleaning like black.
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Old August 12, 2022, 03:14 PM   #4
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It is what it is ...

Quote:
Why can't someone make a truly non corrosive black powder substitute?
Don't mean to pick your words but like a sign/picture I read on a dentist wall that showed a picture of a slice of Cherry pie, it stated;

"Five minutes after eating me, I start eating, your teeth"

When you say Black-Powder, you are talking about Sulphur. Once the mixture is ignited, you create "Salts" and that is when stated to eat your barrel. Although I have a preference on propellants, I don't have a problem with any of them but regardless, they all need your attention and follow-up. Savage made an MM/L and it listed some brands of smokless, you could use but that's a different item and I don't think you are talking about that. ......

Love the Smell/Smoke and;
Be Safe !!!
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Old August 12, 2022, 04:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pahoo View Post
Don't mean to pick your words but like a sign/picture I read on a dentist wall that showed a picture of a slice of Cherry pie, it stated;

"Five minutes after eating me, I start eating, your teeth"

When you say Black-Powder, you are talking about Sulphur. Once the mixture is ignited, you create "Salts" and that is when stated to eat your barrel. Although I have a preference on propellants, I don't have a problem with any of them but regardless, they all need your attention and follow-up. Savage made an MM/L and it listed some brands of smokless, you could use but that's a different item and I don't think you are talking about that. ......

Love the Smell/Smoke and;
Be Safe !!!
I am specifically referencing substitute powders for Black powder. I have a Savage smokeless muzzleloader but don't shoot it anymore. I have seen the pictures of too many of them that blew up.
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Old August 12, 2022, 04:56 PM   #6
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I used American Pioneer powders for a number of years. It is non-corrosive and only requires water for cleanup. I purposely left a rifle without cleaning it for several months after shooting about 20 rounds through it. No rust, no corrosion. It all depends what you want. If you want it to be just like black powder, it will be. If you want nasty, dirty, sulphur smelling crap when you fire the gun, that's what you get. American Pioneer powder burns clean, doesn't gunk up. It has been around for about 20 years, so it's not like it's new and exclusive.
http://www.americanpioneerpowder.com/
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Old August 12, 2022, 06:42 PM   #7
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I would point out that its not just the chemical "salts" alone, but it is those salts in combination with WATER.

And the water vapor in the air is enough. The effect is less, to nearly nonexistent in extremely dry areas and increased in effect and speed in very humid environments.

Black powder fouling traps moisture from the air, and holds it against the gun steel, and because there is both sulfur, potassium, and nitrogen involved small quantities of acid and caustics can be produced, which also accelerates rust of the steel.

I don't know any other chemical formula that will produce the same results as black powder, without having its own set of drawbacks resulting from the reaction. Someone out there might, I don't.
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Old August 13, 2022, 07:52 AM   #8
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I continue to use my supply of Alliant Black MZ in cartridges and shotshells. I understand it was made for Alliant by APP, and for whatever reason, they did not renew their contract, and it is no longer sold. But, APP is similar, if not identical (citric based). BMZ produces a fine, almost powdery fouling that does not appear to be hygroscopic and cleans up easily. In cartridge arms, I use 15-20% less than I would holy black. But I don't use it at all in flintlocks.

PS: It seems Shooters' World Black is also similar.
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Old August 13, 2022, 05:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
The effect is less, to nearly nonexistent in extremely dry areas and increased in effect and speed in very humid environments.
True, when I lived in NV and shot a lot of BP, I virtually never had a problem with rust. The fouling got really hard and stuck to the metal very aggressively, but I seldom had rust issues. Now that I live in western WA, where the humidity usually hovers around 65%, I have customers who shoot BP and they bring me guns to clean . . . ugh.
Quote:
I would point out that its not just the chemical "salts" alone, but it is those salts in combination with WATER.
Yeah, most of the salts in bp fouling are sulphites, sulphates, nitrates, nitrites, and are not terrifically aggressive oxidizers. Other salts may be much more aggressive. But since burning charcoal releases small amounts of water vapor, it is a moot point, bp fouling will easily cause rust. In moist environments, that can mean hours, not days. I've had my share of bp rifle and pistol owners singin' the blues to me. If you shoot 'em, clean 'em.
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Old August 14, 2022, 12:09 AM   #10
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The dry salt compounds are relatively inert. But when you add water those dry compounds can react and form acids (Nitric HNO3, and even sulphuric H2SO4) and those are very reactive, eating steel, turning it to rust.
The water vapor in the air is enough to turn a small percentage of those salts into something that will eat your gun.

How much and how fast the reaction varies with several factors.

The key is water, and its also the key to cleaning, by using enough to flush away all residue once you have scrubbed out the solid fouling.

Hot, very hot, and even boiling water is recommended, because it not only works well, it dries rapidly so the water itself does not cause a rust issue.
Flush and scrub repeatedly until patches come out clean and dry and you done the job right.

Some folks swear by Windex claim the ammonia cleans better, I think Windex works because its an aqueous solution (water based).
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Old August 15, 2022, 08:05 PM   #11
reynolds357
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scorch View Post
I used American Pioneer powders for a number of years. It is non-corrosive and only requires water for cleanup. I purposely left a rifle without cleaning it for several months after shooting about 20 rounds through it. No rust, no corrosion. It all depends what you want. If you want it to be just like black powder, it will be. If you want nasty, dirty, sulphur smelling crap when you fire the gun, that's what you get. American Pioneer powder burns clean, doesn't gunk up. It has been around for about 20 years, so it's not like it's new and exclusive.
http://www.americanpioneerpowder.com/
Thanks. Never heard of it. Will try to get some.
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Old August 16, 2022, 07:44 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scorch
I used American Pioneer powders for a number of years. It is non-corrosive . . .
What's the humidity where you're located, Scorch?
(and/or did you have it inside a humidity-controlled house)
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Old August 16, 2022, 12:47 PM   #13
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Cleaning is part of the learning curve !!!

So what does BP and "all" of its replacements give you?
Well you have to have the smoke, smell as well at a certain recoil and feel.
Back when I was a Buckskinner, I learned the hard way, what can happen "if" you don't follow-up with the care, your M/L. Cleaning M/L's is a vital part of this "M/L learnig-curve". Too many non-M/L shooters learn this, the hard way. .....

I have no problem, working with BP and all it's replacements. I will even ad that BP does have some positive characteristics that others don't have. A good friend of mine that is really up on the replacements has got me using Swiss B/P and the performance is very good. ....

Be Safe !!!
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Old August 16, 2022, 04:16 PM   #14
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Quote:
What's the humidity where you're located, Scorch?
Well, like I said
Quote:
Now that I live in western WA, where the humidity usually hovers around 65%,
and I don't have a humidity-controlled house.
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Old August 16, 2022, 06:06 PM   #15
mehavey
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Interesting...
My black powder fouling (in the flintlock pan) turns soup when exposed to morning weather while shooting a course in silhouette.

It's the humidity that the residual fouling salts suck up that forms a corrosive mix.
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