hammer on the short starter? - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-14-2015, 02:12 PM Thread Starter
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hammer on the short starter?

I've hunted with my flintlock and had some success and lots of fun over the last 20 years but have never been very serious about ML's. Recently was invited to shoot some offhand roundball only grocery shoots. It is fun. I bought a H&A Underhammer cap gun in .36 from a friend. Not really shooting as well as I had hoped but I know I have a lot to learn and could be doing some very dumb things. I am shooting hornady .350 swaged balls with about .014 pillow ticking. Lubing the patch with a concoction of mutton tallow/castor oil I think my friend gave me and using around 28 grns. of Goex 3f. Any how my question is I need to use a plastic mallet with the short starter to get the ball in the first 4" or so of the bore even when clean. After that I can pretty much push it the rest of the way home with my rr. My friend says the muzzle is choked that way on purpose but my question is how likely is it I am hammering the soft ball out of round affecting accuracy when seating it this way? 25 yds. it shoots ok but from 50 yds. it is not good. I can't help but wonder if I am upsetting the ball to fit within the first 6" and it seats easily after that with the rr because it is distorted?? Any tips appreciated.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-14-2015, 02:54 PM
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Re: hammer on the short starter?

First try switching to good old CEISCO as a patch lube. That stuff you are using might be too stiff. Also, reduce your patch thickness. Hammering the short starter to load has got to be a drag and depending on the extent of the hammering you may be doing some damage to the ball. Some folks say a damaged RB is no issue relative to accuracy - I disagree. CRISCO lube and thinner patch. Give it a go and let us know how things progress.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-14-2015, 04:47 PM
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Re: hammer on the short starter?

H&A barrels were known for being "tight". Try a smaller ball or thinner patch. I have used .005 muslin as patching in the past for a tight bore when smaller size balls were unavailable.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-14-2015, 10:18 PM
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Re: hammer on the short starter?

I don't think he will damage the ball, since it is smaller than the .36 bore. But a 350 ball, .014 patch times two (each side of ball) makes for .378. Maybe too much patch for a .36 bore. Look at fired patches to see if they are cutting when you pound them in.

And try a .012 or .010 patch with the .350 ball.

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-14-2015, 10:22 PM Thread Starter
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Re: hammer on the short starter?

Thanks guys. Several good things to try. I will update after I get a chance to test.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-15-2015, 02:28 AM
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Re: hammer on the short starter?

I'd definitely try to find thinner patches to try...

In my TC (and me shooting...) I can't see a difference in patch thickness other than they get harder to load as they get thicker..no burn out..no accuracy difference etc..and I've went as thick as having to hammer them..

Some guys swear buy cutting patches at the muzzle too...tried it and nothing to note except it took a lot longer lol...


To each his own...i couldn't imagine pounding a short starter for an entire shoot...thatd get old in a hurry!
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-15-2015, 10:36 PM
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Re: hammer on the short starter?

Find the patches after firing and they will tell you what to do.

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