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Round ball effectiveness?

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Round ball effectiveness?

Old 08-31-2011, 08:14 PM
  #21  
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Thanks for all of the replies everybody. I figured they would get it done to at least 80 yards. But I was real sure how they would perform as I do not have any experience with blackpowders yet. And to gearheart I am from west texas not back in east texas where the deer are the size of goats are. muleys out hear get just as big as those up there because they live in the worlds biggest oak forest so all they do is eat acorns and walk up and down sand dunes. and he probably will not shoot past 60 yards anyways. and texasheart shots are out of the question with the blackpowder but on a sidenote I have seen a 30-06 lay one down with a texasheart shot. Do not advocate it but I have seen it done. Again thanks to everybody about the positive feedback.
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Old 09-01-2011, 02:07 AM
  #22  
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I believe the original question was about the effectiveness of a .50 caliber round ball. Some of you are using a .54 and I have little doubt of how lethal that projectile is. As you might already know, I just purchased a .54 caliber rifle to give the .530 cal. round ball a try. But again, with my experience with a .50 caliber round ball, I can not advise anyone to use one to harvest a deer with. As for Daniel Boone and the likes of him, their lives depended on harvesting game and were more than likely much better at hunting and tracking game then the average individual is these days. No doubt they were much better at it then I am. So I don't see how they and what they used then to harvest deer with can be related to the average weekend warrior of today. In the end it will always be each individuals decision as to what load to use to EFFECTIVELY harvest deer with, within the limits of their state and or local laws, and I wish them all the best of luck with what ever bullet or ball and powder load they decide to hunt with.
Sincerely,
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Last edited by pluckit; 09-01-2011 at 02:10 AM.
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Old 09-01-2011, 04:52 AM
  #23  
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pluckit
One of 6the reasons they used some what smaller calibers is because they had to carry enough ammunition to last a long time and one of the reasons it was effective was because of the 44 and 48 inch barrels giving a considerable difference in velocity. If you look at history you will notice that as time went on the trend centered around the more ballistically effective calibers which had more terminal effect. If you are going to take down a grizzly or buffalo with a 45 you better have a very fast horse and stay on him.
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Old 09-01-2011, 04:53 AM
  #24  
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Pluckit:

I beg to differ with you about the 50 cal round ball for deer. In my personal experience I have found them more than adequate for taking deer. Among my acquaintances I know at least 10 muzzle loader aficionados who will hunt with nothing else. In talking with them the consensus of opinion is that just by the limitations imposed on them by their choice to do so in and of itself makes them better hunters as a whole. Part of what I enjoy in hunting with round balls is the challenges it presents and find to being successful using them I pass up quite a few shots simply because I don't feel confident in taking them. My personal preference when using round balls is a gun with at least a 33 inch barrel and a 1 in 66 twist. I feel that they are much more accurate and give me a little more range. I could be wrong and probably am, but it works for me. Although I own several guns with shorter barrels and 1 in 48 twists I regulate them to using conicals.

I agree that the average weekend warrior does not posses the skills to hunt with round balls. But in saying that I must admit that I have a deep prejudice against weekend warriors as a whole no matter what they are trying to hunt; center fire, bow or black powder.
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Old 09-01-2011, 05:12 AM
  #25  
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If I'm not mistaken Cabelas Hawkins have 1-48 twist barrels.If so try some conical bullets.It varies from one gun to the next but it might shoot better with them vs the round balls plus they're a little easier,quicker to reload.
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Old 09-01-2011, 05:17 AM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by pluckit View Post
I believe the original question was about the effectiveness of a .50 caliber round ball. Some of you are using a .54 and I have little doubt of how lethal that projectile is. As you might already know, I just purchased a .54 caliber rifle to give the .530 cal. round ball a try. But again, with my experience with a .50 caliber round ball, I can not advise anyone to use one to harvest a deer with. As for Daniel Boone and the likes of him, their lives depended on harvesting game and were more than likely much better at hunting and tracking game then the average individual is these days. No doubt they were much better at it then I am. So I don't see how they and what they used then to harvest deer with can be related to the average weekend warrior of today. In the end it will always be each individuals decision as to what load to use to EFFECTIVELY harvest deer with, within the limits of their state and or local laws, and I wish them all the best of luck with what ever bullet or ball and powder load they decide to hunt with.
Sincerely,
pluckit

I think the only time someone mentioned the .54 was to note that it was more effective at longer ranges.

As to giving someone advice with only one hunt, I know I would not have done this. Even though, you still managed to kill the deer. I would call this a success story.

And the subject of weekend warriors, I don't personally know any of these guys that go into the woods with a side lock rifle! This type of person normally would stick with an inline rifle. The idea of them going through the trouble of mastering a sidelock rifle, is foreign to me. When I load up in hunt camp, I can tell you I get a few remarks as to my hunting rifle!!! But I can assure you that if your state would go to a formal traditional hunt, then they would show up with one!

I know I, as do many of my friends, consider primitive hunting rifles a challenge to master. Hence the people that go this extra mile are normally dedicated to the art of this type of hunting.

As usual these are my humble opinions on this matter. Cheers!!!
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Old 09-01-2011, 05:50 AM
  #27  
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Well guys, I don't think anyone would dispute that that there are more effective projectiles than a patched .50 caliber ball. Bigger balls are more effective. Conicals are more effective. Modern jacketed bullets are more effective. If the guys here were only concerned with ballistic effectiveness we would all be shooting 30-06's.

But let's not lose track of Westtexducks original question, which was;

He shoots 70 grs of triple seven and hornady .490 round balls. He is getting good accuracy but I was wondering what the effective lethal range on a whitetail would be?
I believe the simple answer is a .490 ball over 70 grains of triple seven is a 100 yard whitetail killer with a well placed shot.

Last edited by Semisane; 09-01-2011 at 05:52 AM.
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Old 09-01-2011, 07:04 AM
  #28  
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Back when I used a .45 my charge was 75grs FFF Goex...I tested this load by shooting through a 2x4 at 50 yards...The first deer I ever killed with this muzzleloader was the fall of 1977...I was still hunting down an old railroad bed that runs through a swamp on one of our farms when I noticed a group of does about 50-60 yards away...I took a rest on a cypress tree, picked out a doe, held just behind the shoulder and touched off...My ball took her in the left shoulder, passed through the shoulder blade, spine, right shoulder blade and stopped under the hide on the right side...Of course she dropped...

Through the years I learned to hold lower and killed at least 50 with that .45 and load...I never had any problems with the .45 ball killing deer...Now I also learned not to rely on a heavy blood trail to find my deer...Even today when when I shoot deer with my .243, shotgun, inline, bow or .54 I go to where I last saw the deer, not where they were standing when the shot was taken...As we all know, deer do not always start leaving a blood trail at the site of the hit...Typically my deer run 50-75 yards with a lung shot, no matter the weapon...If I need to drop them, I take a high shoulder shot...

If you HAVE to have a deer drop on the spot to find them do not use a roundball (or a PowerBelt)... This is also why more powder behind a ball is not always a good idea...They are made of pure lead and flatten easily...More powder simply helps them shoot flatter, not kill more effectively...This has been an ongoing debate I've heard for over 30 years...If you use higher powder charges and shoot a deer real close and you hit a good bone, you're ball probably will not exit...This is also a good reason to hold on the lower third of a deer...The rib bones aren't as tough down there...

At any rate, learn to find deer when you don't have blood, no matter what weapon you use...
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Old 09-01-2011, 09:49 AM
  #29  
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I believe the PRB and open sights are a good match. The sights limit the range to what the PRB is effective. Unless you have eyesight from hell.

I see no need for a scope on a gun that shoots a PRB. If your eyesight is getting poor. (ask me about that) Limit your range even more. Get closer. It doesn't seem to limit the hunters in archery season.

All a scope does on a sidelock is let you shoot ranges you shouldn't be.
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Old 09-01-2011, 12:02 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by pluckit View Post
. But again, with my experience with a .50 caliber round ball, I can not advise anyone to use one to harvest a deer with.
I respect your opinion but don't totally agree with it. I mostly use my Omega .50 for hunting now and shoot the TC carbine at the range. However, I don't see any problem using a .50 PRB if you stay within the effective range. Like I said in my post. I shot that buck at about 70 yrds with open iron sights. Dropped it where it stood. As for accuracy, I was getting decent groups out to around 75 yrds. (yes, with open sights) I just don't see any problem with that as long as the hunter is capable of taking a clean ethical shot within his and his rifles capabilities. Just my opinion.
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