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I've never shot smokeless....
Posted by FrontierWest on Friday, 11 February 2011, at 4:20 p.m., in response to Smokeless Load for a Trapdoor, posted by Bob Foreman on Friday, 11 February 2011, at 3:00 p.m.
(in the old guns), but I'd find the conversion chart for loads first. The real problem one has is the initial build up/push of smokeless vs. Blackpowder. I'd be hesitant for sure to put the excess chamber and bore pressures of the smokeless. One can set up a chronograph and compare MVV's to obtain the 1250 or so FPS. it is quite a challenge hunting with the Black as one needs to look to the side of the smoke to see the obscured target. I've killed a number of Deer and Elk with all my old guns using as close to the original specs for everything.
Bullet, 405 gr. and slug your barrel because if I were a betting man, your barrel is at least .459 or greater. Most molds old are .457. If you shoot a .457 in your gun and I'll do lots more betting that the bullets are keyholing like crazy and you'd be luck to hit the broad side of a barn!
The Winchester style mold with the flat nose would be better for that purpose (hunting) as it tends to really slap the object (then tumble), unlike the round nose of the govt. bullet which tends to poke a nice clean .45 cal hole right through the body and cavity. Combined with the smoke, makes it hard to tell you actually hit the animal (especially Elk) immediately after the trigger pull. Then be prepared to do some tracking. Some recommend using the softer large pistol primers instead of the heavier rifle primers when using an original firing pin. I've broken one FP in over 30 years of shooting. Think it was due to a friend dry firing more than the primer being hard.
The hardness of lead is around 16 I believe (modern wheel weights have too much tin in them in my opinion)..too soft lead, leads the barrel too much. Use a good lube too. I also recommend a cardboard wad between the powder and lead bullet to act as a gas check to help in preventing blow by (I think you will get a lot of that if you shoot smokeless and a soft lead...lead should be soft enough to leave your thumb nail impression in it (assuming you don't have a hardness tester.
Hope I helped a little.
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