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I recently purchased a replica 1851 Navy colt BP. Any suggestions on what the best powder to use, ammo etc etc.. OH and shooting regular bullets out of it instead of the round balls??
 

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sgtbpm, the best way to get started is to find a copy of "The Blackpowder Loading Manual" by Sam Fadala. It's an excellent resource. In it Fadala lists loads for different BP guns, plus gives many helpful tips. He also wrote "The Blackpowder Handbook", another great book.

That aside, you will likely find that your best load should be about 15g and patched roundballs. Do not load more than 20g. If you contact the manufacturer they will send you information.
 

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Thanks, I will go out and attempt to find this book. The Book the gun came with came gave me diameter of the ammo to use but that was it.. .451-.454
 

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"Blackpowder Handbook" may prove the more helpful. Amazon.com is my favorite for books. Try typing "Sam Fadala" into the search engine.
 

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Personally I find the "Bullets" to be a PITA. They must be set fairly close to straight on the chamber, and crimped down just right. I prefer round lead ball on top of a OXO Wonderwad. My biggest greivance with the old scholl colts is no top strap on the frame so You can not switch cyl. quickly. Enjoy, welcome to the sport, keep your powder dry.
Also powder foulings are quite corrosive so clean often and well. repeat as required.
 

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15 lousy grs? in .44 cap andball? that sounds awful feeble to me. FFFG powder, should be considerably more than that,even with conical bullets. Double that(or more) with round ball, IIRC.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
thanks guys, but little shy on the lingo, What's PITA, oxo wonderwad? I did read about the powders alittle bit, regular and Pyrodex, which is better? I'm really looking foward to going out and shooting this thing but want to get it right, I did read about guns blowing up, Yikes!!!!
 

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223 fan said:
15 lousy grs? in .44 cap andball? that sounds awful feeble to me. FFFG powder, should be considerably more than that,even with conical bullets. Double that(or more) with round ball, IIRC.
Until he finds out that more is safer, 20g should be considered max. The fifteen load should be good for 650-700 fps. If it's an Uberti, Armi San Marco or something similar, then heavier loads will be fine.
 

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Myself,I hated how hard black powder was to get, 1968, for a 16 year old boy, and how much of it I had to use, and how much it cost. I took to mixing 3grsof Bullseye powder with 3 grs of fffg black powder. I'd prepare the charges in advance,put them in empty capsules from the pharmacy, and carried them in an old Remington 38 special ammo box. :)
 

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Welcome !sgtbmp!

from my , small knowledge,a '51 colt navy' is .36 [bill hickock]
.44 would be an 'army'

no biggie,! one can compress bp . as long as it's free to vent![i.e, the MUZZLE]

if it's a brass framed navy? follow everyones advise with the 15gr.[or less]
PYRODEX P[fffg]


have fun ,sgt.

thanks.
 

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223 fan said:
Myself,I hated how hard black powder was to get, 1968, for a 16 year old boy, and how much of it I had to use, and how much it cost. I took to mixing 3grsof Bullseye powder with 3 grs of fffg black powder. I'd prepare the charges in advance,put them in empty capsules from the pharmacy, and carried them in an old Remington 38 special ammo box. :)
I don't know what pressures you generated with that mix but don't ever NEVER use smokeless powder in a black powder firearm. Rifle, shotgun or pistol.

RIKA
 

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sgtbpm said:
thanks guys, but little shy on the lingo, What's PITA, oxo wonderwad? I did read about the powders alittle bit, regular and Pyrodex, which is better? I'm really looking foward to going out and shooting this thing but want to get it right, I did read about guns blowing up, Yikes!!!!
You put the wonderwads in each cylinder to prevent your revolver chain firing. Some folks use Crisco, etc but its goopy and messy. The WWs are clean. Pyrodex is a black powder substitute - you still have to clean but it doesn't foul as easily. BTW, you can buy pyrodex pre-formed into little 15gr cylinders that just press into the revolver's chambers (does away with the measure). I like those a lot.

RIKA
 

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Disregard the suggestion to "blend" Black Powder, and Smokeless!!!. The max charge on Your pistol is determined by wehter it is steel or brass framed. A brass framed Colt is probably good for about 25gr of FFg pyrodex, or 20gr of FFg BP. A brass framed revolver should use appx 5gr less due to the fact the frame will stretch out of shape under recoil. There is no top strap on the Colts so all the forces concetrate on the pins at the boottom of thframe and the "Takedown Key"
Sorry about the acronyms PITA = Pain In The Arse.
Oxo Wonder wads are a small felt pad that goes over the powder charge, and under the ball, they are loaded with IIRC silicone and act as wadding to seal off any potential flashovers.
Pyrodex is a little bit harder to ignite then BP, but easier, more forgiving to store, and easier to find. Stores that sell reloading supplies can sell pyrodex, but a special permit is required for BP as it is still classified as a "Low Explosive"
I enjoy using my revolvers very much, infact I carry my 1858 when I go deer hunting during "Muzzleloader" season. We are "Blessed" with large groups of roaming dog packs out here, and I will turn a deer hunt into a dog hunt in a heartbeat.The important thing is to keep it safe, and work up to a load that you are comfotable with.
I REPEAT do not mix Smokeless, and Black Powder, as the Smokeless is going to over pressurize your chambers. The only muzzleloader that are safe for this are a couple of newer ones designed to cheat durring primitive weapons season.
 

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if u keep the charges small enough, it doesn't matter. 3.0 grs of bullseye, in a .44 cap and ball,is nothing. All the 3 grs of black powder did was let the old style cap ignite the smokeless. They wouldn't do so with just a charge of smokeless in the chamber, I had to use a drill and wood screw to pull the balls from the cylinder.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Cool, I found the pyrodex today and bought a box, I did talk with Pietta whom made it and they said 1851's Navy were chamberd in both .44 and .36.. U can tell by the engraving, mine have the battle ships engraved on the cylinder. the army's have some sort of army scene engraved. It does have a brass frame and they said for no reason put smokeless powder in it. I will for sure go on that advise that you guys have been saying.
 

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they are talkingabout FILLING the chamber with smokeless, like the typical dumbass might be inclinded to do. :)
 

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Sgt, please disregard the peanut gallery. Pietta gave good advice. Don't even use blended powder.

RIKA
 

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sgtbpm, there are many knowledgable folks here and they won't steer you wrong. DO NOT use any smokeless in your BP revolver. BP and smokeless are chemically different and they burn differently, too. Ask Pietta for an owners manual if you didn't already.

Also, please keep the revolver pointed away from you when you are loading it.
 
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