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GM .54 ball targets.............

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GM .54 ball targets.............

Old 07-17-2007, 11:06 PM
  #1  
Typical Buck
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Default GM .54 ball targets.............


I don't know if this is typical or is there a break in period for new barrels?I tried both .530 and .535 dia. balls starting at 80grs. with 2F 777 ,wad and various size patches,swabbing every three shots.Well both sizes gave 3-4" groups at 50yards untilI reached 110gr! So much for a target barrel but it should also be sudden death for any big game hit with it.Not sure of the velocity and never bothered going higher.When cleaning do you remove and oil the cleanout plug as there is one on the side and looks like a threaded one on the top of the breach as well.It is the old style barrel with out fiber optic sights but as luck would have it was loose along with one thimble from the factory.I tightened the sight before I started testing.Should I have began at a lighter load? .............Harold
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:16 PM
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Default RE: GM .54 ball targets.............

are you using a wad to keep the patches from burning up? I'd try pyrodex RS.
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:22 PM
  #3  
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Default RE: GM .54 ball targets.............

My Green Mountain Barrel also likes strong loads. I shoot 110 grains of Goex 2fin my .58 caliber with a .570 round ball and a .017 patch. In my .54 caliber I shoot 100 grains of Goex 3f and a .530 ball and patch. In my .50 caliber Green Mountains I shoot 90 grains of Goex 3f and a .490 patched ball. And in the .50 caliber 1:28 twist, today I was shooting 120 grains of Pyrodex RS and a 200 grains Hornady XTP. Accuracy with them is excellent. The GMB just seems to like a stiff charge.

That is some nice shooting there... way to slide them in there.
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Old 07-17-2007, 11:23 PM
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Default RE: GM .54 ball targets.............

Yes I am but it sure was weird to only shoot half decent at darn near max! Never thought to look for patches butI doubt they got cooked with the lubed wad.Balloons were no problem at 100 yards with no hangtime at this speed, they just vanished.......Harold* Had a whitetail doe walk out during shooting and ignored the shooting for an hour feeding 20yards from the target the whole time even allowing me to walk up and check my target.
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Old 07-18-2007, 08:09 PM
  #5  
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Default RE: GM .54 ball targets.............

not bad pioneer i working on getting my .54 hawken shooting well it seems to like 90 gr t7 and a .530 ball and 15 patch but im going to try some .018 patches i think thanks for the info ill keep posting what i find out if you do to.
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Old 07-18-2007, 08:26 PM
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Default RE: GM .54 ball targets.............

After shooting my .54 flintlock for the first time today, Dump the T7 and get yourself a can of Pyrodex RS. Kiss those 3-4" @ 50 yard groups goodbye and say hello to 1 hole groups. I was only used a .010 patch lubed with BB and they were clean as could be.
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Old 07-18-2007, 08:32 PM
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Default RE: GM .54 ball targets.............

ORIGINAL: Pioneer2


I don't know if this is typical or is there a break in period for new barrels?I tried both .530 and .535 dia. balls starting at 80grs. with 2F 777 ,wad and various size patches,swabbing every three shots.Well both sizes gave 3-4" groups at 50yards untilI reached 110gr! So much for a target barrel but it should also be sudden death for any big game hit with it.Not sure of the velocity and never bothered going higher.When cleaning do you remove and oil the cleanout plug as there is one on the side and looks like a threaded one on the top of the breach as well.It is the old style barrel with out fiber optic sights but as luck would have it was loose along with one thimble from the factory.I tightened the sight before I started testing.Should I have began at a lighter load? .............Harold
Yes there is a breakin period for new barrels.None of my Green Mountain barrels shot worth a durn until about 20 shots.Then they started to group.They only get better as you shoot more.Some people say 200 shots to break in a barrel.If your burning patches up it won'tdo worth a flip.My .54 turns them to cinders above 70 grs. of 2F 777 without something between the patch and the powder.I would just shoot with 70 grs. and .530 balls with .018 patches til you use up the pound of powder your shooting now.My .54 Green mountain barrel likes .530 balls, .020 pactches,15 grs of cornmeal,100 grs. of 2F 777.
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Old 07-18-2007, 08:50 PM
  #8  
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Default RE: GM .54 ball targets.............

Just a general statement about shooting patched round balls...Guys, you have got to check your patches...I put a tarp about 15 steps in front of the muzzle...It's not just burn through that affects accuracy, its also patches tearing when loading or on sharp lands when coming out of the barrel...So even if you are using an over the powder wad, if the patch is being cut or torn it will affect the accuracy....It might even group "decent" with torn patches, it just depends on how much it is torn...

I have a custom .54 with a Ed Rayle barrel, deep cut rifling at 1-72 inches...I can shoot store bought .018 and .020 patches and they are torn after the shot...I can drop back to .015 patches and I get burn through....But, I can go to WalMart and buy .018 pillow ticking, wash it a couple of times, throw it in the dryer and lube...Bingo, the gun groups better than I can shoot....

Now, the gun will shoot 2 inch groups with an occasional flyer with the store bought patches, but the difference in washing the bulk was well worth the switch...I went through a time that I tried all the wads, etc...I'm now convinced that picking the correct patching and lubing properly is probably the most important part of the equation...
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Old 07-19-2007, 04:39 AM
  #9  
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Default RE: GM .54 ball targets.............

Pioneer - The cleaning instructions that come with the GM barrel recommends that you remove both the nipple and the clean out plug when cleaning. I usually throw the nipple in the hot soapy water and let it slosh around in there while I swab the bore. The little clean out plug which is only a tiny thing gets wiped down with #13 solvent and both the nipple and plug threads get a light coating of anti-sieze before putting back in.
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Old 07-19-2007, 05:41 AM
  #10  
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Default RE: GM .54 ball targets.............

Have you examined the patches? I have never been able to get 777 to work well with round balls. Even with a Wonder Wad under the patched ball. The patches were always severely damaged.

I suggest you try that barrel with a charge of real FFg black powder. I'll bet it will shoot better. I have totally abandoned the use of 777 with PRBs..... However, I have not tried "the cornmeal on top of the powder trick". That might insulate the patch enough to keep it in one piece.

New barrels often have sharp edges on the lands, and will sometimes cut patches until they wear smooth a little bit from firing PRB's. In addition, I would very strongly second nchawkeye's suggestion that you go to a fabric store with your micrometer and buy socotton pillow ticking of .020" or .018".

Thicker patching might make loading more difficult, but it might also improve accuracy.
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