Sunday, September 9, 2012

Blue Dot in a Modern Muzzle Loading Rifle

Cal: I would like to use Blue Dot in a 4-bore muzzleloader I'm building--do you have any input on this? As a machinist of 40 years I've done quite a variety of gun projects. The 4 will resemble the real early stuff, smooth bore muzzleloader etc. BUT I started with 4140 Chrome-Moly when I made the barrel and used 4345 for the breach. I was always under the impression the concern was in the steel used in these guns, am I mistaken? I am 1.700 across the flats and 1.5 at the muzzle which gives me a certain level of confidence. My shooting will be limited to 1216 gr. conical or a .875 round ball in a sabot. Thanks for any input Mike L. USA

Hi MIke: Interesting question. I do not have any experience loading any smokeless in a muzzleloader but in a modern rifle, with new steel, and built heavy enough to withstand the pressures generated, I do not see why it would not work. Pressure data is paramount and you can get a close approximate by taking the bullet weight and projected powder charge and comparing it to a nitro express cartridge with the same weight and style of bullet and powder charge and velocity. This is for a new rifle only--never should readers attempt this in a vintage front-loader. A second point comes to mind, your priming charge or cap should be able to ignite the smokeless powder easily. Good shooting, Cal

Hi Cal: I’m an avid hunter in Zimbabwe and come from a hunting background. But I’m a farmer and hunt in the Zambezi valley maybe once or twice a year. My dad is a PH and will be at the SCI convention. I have always dreamed of owning a double .470 or .500. I see Sabatti is making very good looking doubles and quite affordable. Can you give me advice on them ? I hear they not very accurate?I've also asked my dad to try and test a .450 or .500 Sabatti while he is over in the States. Thank you. Pieter P. Zimbabwe P.S.: I enjoy your doubles column in the African Hunter and look forward to your response. Thank you Good day, Pieter, Zimbabwe

Pieter: While I’ve had no personal experience with the Sabattis, all reports are to the positive and what limited problems I have heard of, such as poor regulation, is quickly taken care of by the importer, Cabelas. For the price I don’t think you can go wrong for this utility rifle. Good shooting, Cal