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SaltyDog

Black Powder Regulations

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For .58 in ACW the standard seems to be 65 grains 3f, and with the musket caps it goes boom just fine. My own experience has been anything over 80 is a waste of powder all the way up to .75 Bess. Lots of un-burnt powder and if the wind blows back at you, it really stings when it fizzles out in your face. I just keep with the 65 gr 3f for all long-guns as I have already made a kit for rolling cartridges with brass measure, form and all in a neat little package. I only use 40gr. 3f in the pistol though.

Static electricity will set off a loaded flintlock even if you knock out the prime and plug it with a feather too. Found that out when I took my first flinter hunting deer waaaay back. Put a .62 hole in the floor of my old chevy truck and deafened me for three days. I was only going from one side of the farm to the other, so I thought I'd save a shot and just re-prime when i got there. Slid out off of my blanket seatcover, grabbed it right over the lock and WHAM! RIIIINNNNGGG! *cough-cough*

Bo

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Yeah, it depends on what grade powder you use. I use 2f, 100 grains for my .62 muskets, and 120 for my .75 musket and .75 blunderbuss. My pistols are also .75, but I only load them at 80 grains. I also use part of that cartridge for the priming, so what goes down the bore is a little less. I cary a small pocket flask of 4f to prime when needed.

Also, I only use real blackpowder, never the synthetics like pyrodex. I've tried them, and they foul too much, don't give enough smoke, and can be hard to ignite with a match. When I was trying them out, I found I had to prime with real powder in order to get enough heat to ignite the main charge. I prefer Elephant, but it can be hard to get. Goex is more readily available. I tried the re-enactor powder and it is garbage. Basically the floor sweeping and whatever is left in the vats. Inconsistant as hell and fouls like wet charcoal dust.

Hawkyns

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Thanks for the eval of the re-enactor stuff, we were thinking about switching to that this year. Last year we went through almost 15 lb of powder and its getting expensive! Looks like we will have to eat less, so's we can afford to use the good stuff again!

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Also, I only use real blackpowder, never the synthetics like pyrodex. I've tried them, and they foul too much, don't give enough smoke, and can be hard to ignite with a match. When I was trying them out, I found I had to prime with real powder in order to get enough heat to ignite the main charge. I prefer Elephant, but it can be hard to get. Goex is more readily available. I tried the re-enactor powder and it is garbage. Basically the floor sweeping and whatever is left in the vats. Inconsistant as hell and fouls like wet charcoal dust.

Hawkyns

Speaking of Pyrodex... I have had NO END OF TROUBLE with the stuff... In fact I've had so much trouble with using it in my flintlock, I've earned myself the nickname of "wuffer" (and various derivitives) due to how much trouble I have had with my flintlock because of my use of Pyrodex powder. At PiP, someone was kind enough to let me use some of their powder all weekend (thanks again M.A.d'Dogge), and I had absolutely no troubles.... I'll be disposing of the remaining Pyrodex in a safe manner when I can, and from now on I am only buying Goex, or if I can get the brand name of the stuff M.A.d'Dogge had (it was in a white tin with black lettering) I would use that as well.

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Pyrodex is not classified as an explosive for shipping. Black Powder is classified an explosive. One difference between the two is that the Black Powder Subsitutes (like Pyrodex) have a far slower expansion rate when the powder burns. That expansion rate is the difference between the Pyrodex woof and the Black Powder bang when shooting loose powder blanks.

However, since Black Powder is an explosive there are difficulties in obtaining and storing it, so places like Wal-Mart will stock Pyrodex, but won’t stock Black Powder. Then again, Black Powder isn’t defined as an explosive cavalierly it is the primary igniter for many military munitions today and can make some right fine bombs if other materiel isn’t available. It is however, over regulated in many areas of the country and can make it very hard to find (or ship) in some locations. If you want to make the Department of Transpiration (DOT) Hazmat Division have a melt down tell them you are shipping small arms ammunition that has Black Powder as a propellant. This will generate an argument in shipping authorities on proper classification of the shipment and safeguards. For you see small arms ammunition is classified and shipped differently from black powder, so they will argue over whether it’s small arms or black powder. It can be a fun ride and a different answer every time you ask!

Edited by Graydog

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Pyrodex is absolutely un-suitable for use in a flintlock, but works O.K. in caplock weapons. It was actually developed with caplocks in mind. It is classified as a Flammable Solid, which is why it can be sold almost anywhere. Real black powder is classified as an explosive, and comes under an entirely different set of rules for storage, sale and transportation. The regulations that need to be complied with for a retailer to sell real black powder are too much trouble for most gun shops to be bothered with.

Before the advent of nitroglycerine and other nitrate based explosives, such as dynamite, TNT, guncotton, etc. black powder was the explosive of choice for all demolition, blasting, and munitions uses. The nitrate based explosives were found to be considerably more powerful. Black powder is still used in fusing and other ignition related applications in modern munitions and explosives.

>>>> Cascabel

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I have a jug of Pyrodex that I cannot even get the cannon crews to do away with! A co-worker insisted that I take it off his hands four years ago as he only uses pellets in his *ugh* in-line. I have it in a thirty cal. ammo can. If i can't find a cannon crew to blow it out this season, i am going to spread it on the horse poo pile and water it down to be rid of it!

Bo

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Cap'n Bo, when you mentioned this it made me think of Oklahoma City. Methane gas is a byproduct of manure degradation, and it is flammable. Keep fire and other ignition sources such as electrical tools away from manure.

Refernece: http://www.cdc.gov/nasd/docs/d001601-d0017...16/d001616.html

Just attended cannon training at Charles Towne Landing. They use the National Park Service guidelines regarding black Powder and do not use Pyrodex so take this with a grain of salt. They dispose of black powder by mixing it with sand and water, dirt if sand is not available. Put the dirt or sand in a non-sparking tub add the powder and water. I forget what the ratio was exactly, but 5:1 should suffice. Mix it up then sprinkle it around on the ground. If you want the exact description of this method, let me know and I'll give them a call and get it precisely.

Edited by Joe Pyrat

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I have a jug of Pyrodex that I cannot even get the cannon crews to do away with!

We have experimented with cannon and Pyrodex and got no better results than when it was used in a musket. Even bagged and rammed the gun still went "poof". However, a six pounder going "poof" has entertainment value in it's own right! :D

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Cap'n Bo, when you mentioned this it made me think of Oklahoma City. Methane gas is a byproduct of manure degradation, and it is flammable. Keep fire and other ignition sources such as electrical tools away from manure.

Refernece: http://www.cdc.gov/nasd/docs/d001601-d0017...16/d001616.html

Just attended cannon training at Charles Towne Landing. They use the National Park Service guidelines regarding black Powder and do not use Pyrodex so take this with a grain of salt. They dispose of black powder by mixing it with sand and water, dirt if sand is not available. Put the dirt or sand in a non-sparking tub add the powder and water. I forget what the ratio was exactly, but 5:1 should suffice. Mix it up then sprinkle it around on the ground. If you want the exact description of this method, let me know and I'll give them a call and get it precisely.

:P Thank you sir! That was an off-the-cuff joke, but still good to know. After that car wreck last week, I don't need to go blowin myself up in a pile of poo as well! I have some old barn wood that I'm burning off this weekend, maybe I will just fling handfuls into the air bit at a time.... (Just kidding!)

Dirt and water in my brass bucket should work. Thank you for that info. Greatly appreciated.

Bo

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I can spot three things that I tend to disagree with. The first is the use of "Fire In The Hole," a phrase not used until the advent of dynamite and its use in mining operations at least 120 years (more of less, I'll look it up later) after our time period. I think that the more appropriate "Giving Fire" works better.

Second, in the "Free Fire Zone" having to call each shot is distracting. A "fire at will" command should be sufficient as all in the zone expect there to be shooting and would have been out of place in a real setting with the exception of cannon that requires that the crew be on the same page. Establishing and maintaining a firing line would prevent anyone from having a shot go off behind them.

Third, some of us do not belong to a "recognized pirate group" but are recognized as individuals. Venues such as PiP allow all shooters with inspected guns and uses strict self policing. Some of the folks who come there have never shot before and are trained there. Would they be allowed to play?

There are also some little spelling and grammar errors that I could address later if you would like.

Iffen I can add me own two pense ta this......I likes ta exhibit historical cannon projectiles, cannister, grape, chain, etc. an I thinks perhaps an exception might be made fer these. I also was urged by Cascable years ago not ta wad me small arms iffen at all possible. I have followed this good advice and our crew rules only allow it in tha case of a set scenario where tha piece MUST be handled muzzle down afore firing. Otherwise, as ye knows, any pistol problems are "made safe" easily by dumping tha powder.

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I've used Pyrodex in my flintlock, simply pour in a ten grain black powder charge, followed by a measured charge of Pyrodex (followed by ball or wad). The pan obviously has to be primed with black powder.

Better stock up on powder and lead while ye can...

Yours, Mike

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I've used Pyrodex in my flintlock, simply pour in a ten grain black powder charge, followed by a measured charge of Pyrodex (followed by ball or wad). The pan obviously has to be primed with black powder.

Better stock up on powder and lead while ye can...

Yours, Mike

If you have black powder available, why bother with fooling around with Pyrodex ? Real black powder is also considerably cheaper !!

>>>> Cascabel

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If you have black powder available, why bother with fooling around with Pyrodex ? Real black powder is also considerably cheaper !!

>>>> Cascabel

I used Pyrodex years ago when I was low on black powder, will work if needed (with a five grain starter charge as previously mentioned).

BP here goes for $19 a pound (not including tax).

Yours, Mike

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4. Any small arms or great guns that do not meet the above criteria are to be immediately removed from the event area or secured in a locked enclosure away from public access and view.

Initials ______

If I read this correctly this would mean if you have say a flintlock with a frizzen that isnt hard enough you obvioulsy can't fire it but then you also can't even wear it as a non-operational gun as part of a costume?

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4. Any small arms or great guns that do not meet the above criteria are to be immediately removed from the event area or secured in a locked enclosure away from public access and view.

Initials ______

If I read this correctly this would mean if you have say a flintlock with a frizzen that isnt hard enough you obvioulsy can't fire it but then you also can't even wear it as a non-operational gun as part of a costume?

If it happened to be me in charge of black powder safety, I would consider such a weapon as non-functional, and tell you to go ahead and wear it as a costume item. That is most certainly not a safety issue. I would hope that anyone in charge of safety is sufficiently knowlegeable to distinguish between a safety issue as opposed to a reliability issue. In such a case, I would NOT allow you to load and attempt to fire such a piece, as you could wind up with a loaded gun that you could not easily render safe by firing the load. (a good reason to not use wadding !!)

>>>> Cascabel

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If it happened to be me in charge of black powder safety, I would consider such a weapon as non-functional, and tell you to go ahead and wear it as a costume item. That is most certainly not a safety issue. I would hope that anyone in charge of safety is sufficiently knowlegeable to distinguish between a safety issue as opposed to a reliability issue. In such a case, I would NOT allow you to load and attempt to fire such a piece, as you could wind up with a loaded gun that you could not easily render safe by firing the load. (a good reason to not use wadding !!)

>>>> Cascabel

I agree completly, I just thought that there might be some rewording warranted in there to make the distinction

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