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Discussion Starter #1
Last year I bought a new traditions pa pellet ultralight. I know it’s far from traditional but it is what I could afford. Basically it’s a flintlock with a barrel off an in-line. When I got the rifle I picked up some 777 (loose)and some hornady 250gr sst sabots. The rifle groups great at 50yrds. The problem is it’s high, very high. Target had a 5” bull and with a 6o’clock hold poi is about 6” above center with the sights adjusted all the way down. At 100yrds they hit about 2” above center which is still 5” above hold. I’ve tried from 70-90grs of 777 and group size stays the same just moves higher. I still need some more time at the range to play but I need to decide what bullets to try. I’m thinking heavier and probably full bore instead of sabot. I’m also concerned with bullet performance on deer. I know with a 1:28 a prb is pretty much out at hunting velocities. Can I use a lead bullet or will they slip the rifling? I should probably mention I’m using fffg 777. Honestly I’ve always used fffg, that’s just how I was taught, this is my first attempt with 777. Any recommendations would help.
 

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You can use a lead conical. Traditions makes a quality barrel and are not to picky on what they shoot. Maybe try the 385gr hornady great plains bullets or 370gr TC maxi balls to drop that POI down. I personally suggest you get some real Goex black powder.
 

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my hunting partner and I use either 300 grain sst with harvester crush rib sabots or 290 grain barnes with the crush rib sabot. Try changing sabots I think you will see your group tighten up.
 

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In fast 1-28 barrels I've found a longer bullet performs/stabilizes best. Below are 2 bullets/loads I've got excellent results from. My favorite Barnes load is 110 grains of BH209 pushing a Barnes 290 grain .451 290 grain Spit-Fire T-EZ FB. I'm currently shooting this load out of my TC ProHunter inline. Also, 348 grain Powerbelt Aerotips did well for me out of 1-28 Bergara barrels used by CVA. The .452 Hornady bullet/MMP sabot combo(below) was a tack driver out of a Green Mountain 1-28 flinter bbl. The MMP High Pressure sabots can be ordered directly from MMP. They are mfg with a premium polymer formulation and will not blow even with hot loads per my experience.This is a very cost efficient load compared to the prepackaged. Have fun & best of luck!!



 

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I have a 1:28" green mountain barrel. It shoots 300gr Thor's with amazing accuracy. 100gr of 3f shoots 1 big hole groups at 50yds if I do my part. The Thor's are full bore Barnes bullets.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the recommendations. I think I’m going to try some type of “belted” bullet and something in all lead. I have a can of fffg goex I plan of trying too. Traditions shows a powder load range of 65-100 grains of 777 for a 240gr sabot bullet so by that I’m nowhere near an overload. But I read last night that hodgdon recommends a 15% reduction from black powder to 777. Correct me if I’m wrong but when using fffg instead of ffg, I believe it is recommended to reduce the charge by 10%. So a 100gr ffg blackpowder loaf should be reduced to 76.5gr of fffg 777. So maybe I am pushing the sst sabots too hard. I did also find in an owners manual for a traditions in-line that they recommend a starting load of 80gr of Black powder or pyrodex but only 56gr of 777.

A few questions for you guys with a lot more blackpowder experience than me...

I see a lot of recommendations to stay away from 777, why? What is the down side?

What are you thoughts on ffg vs fffg in a 50cal. When I started my first flinter was a 22” carbine and the guys who were advising me recommended that.

As far as jacket “full bore” bullets do you prefer belted or not?
 

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Faster ignition with 3f, I shoot 90 gr 3f and 495 lead ball with a .015 patch, This load touches holes at 50 yards off a bench rest.

Remember with BP, if you overload, say 120 gr, all you end up with is unburnt powder coming out the end of your barrel.

Shoot over an old sheet when its not windy, Start at 80 gr, check sheet for unburnt powder, if none go up 10 until you see powder,

Then go back 10 and thats your max load using the same bullet.

Good Luck, Stant
 

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What in the world is a "belted" bullet???


There really isn't any way to know how your gun will shoot if you don't test it yourself. 777 and other powders take a higher temp to ignite than true BP. I wouldn't use it in a flinter for that reason alone.


2f vs 3f IMO doesn't matter on bore size. I have 3f loads that are better than 2f loads in a 62cal. You just have to experiment and see what your gun likes.


Lots of guys believe what Stant said about excess powder. I don't. Yes that powder might not be burning completely but it does change the Dynamics of the load. I shoot what's accurate. And I've seen some loads shoot better with "excessive" powder charges.
 

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Assume by "belted" you mean "jacketed" bullet??

I used to shoot 777(in inlines) but was unhappy with the crude ring accumulation in the bore. Always used black powder in flinters. Best to start low with load & work up. It's a multi trip to the range process as each gun has it's own sweet load. With black powder I now only shoot Swiss as it far more cleaner burning & has a more consistent granulation vs Goex. Goex works fine but if you can get Swiss...try some and you will be pleasantly surprised.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
By belted I meant bullets of the style of the powerbelt brand with the plastic skirt vs the hornady fpb type that is jacketed but has no plastic seal. I heard them called belted hundreds of times, I thought the term was common.

I absolutely plan on experimenting. I, like most people, simply lack the time or money to get every possible bullet and try them with a range of powder charges. Seems logical to me that if 30 people say a great planes 385 worked great for them and 20 say the power belts are junk that I should try the great planes first.

The more I look into the issue I’m having, the less I think that I’m shooting a combo that my gun doesn’t like. The groups are good just really high. Just doesn’t seem to make sense that a load within the recommended range would be about 8” high with the rear sight down below the “scale”. I sent an email to traditions to see what they say.
 

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I've never heard the term belted...but, don't dabble much in modern bullets except for that 1 barrel and Thor's were all the further I needed to look.

I'd call it a skirt or something...many bullets have a hollow base of some sort... essentially, it should "seal" the bore when the charge is fired by expanding and forming a tight seal..


If you're getting a good group, but it's high, I'd agree... something isn't right if the sights are maxed out.


None of us have the time or money to burn trying everything under the sun...but reality is, you could have the same gun and it like something different than the one you have.

I typically load everything with 3f because that's what I keep on hand mostly...but one of 62cals likes 2F. My other 62 likes 3f...go figure.

I'd start by finding a projectile with a good reputation of doing what I want it to do. For me, it needs to load without a mallet. It needs to be accurate. And it needs to be effective on game and not explode on impact. I don't care what it cost (within reason). The Thor's I shoot are borderline crazy expensive...but they load easy, they are super accurate and they do well in the critters. I've taken 2 buck and a doe with them and I'm pleased. I don't shoot the Thor's on the range...

If I wanted to target shoot with that gun a good bit, I'd find a different projectile that was cheaper. I have other flinters I shoot more on the range that aren't as expensive.
 

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By belted I meant bullets of the style of the powerbelt brand with the plastic skirt vs the hornady fpb type that is jacketed but has no plastic seal. I heard them called belted hundreds of times, I thought the term was common.

I absolutely plan on experimenting. I, like most people, simply lack the time or money to get every possible bullet and try them with a range of powder charges. Seems logical to me that if 30 people say a great planes 385 worked great for them and 20 say the power belts are junk that I should try the great planes first.

The more I look into the issue I’m having, the less I think that I’m shooting a combo that my gun doesn’t like. The groups are good just really high. Just doesn’t seem to make sense that a load within the recommended range would be about 8” high with the rear sight down below the “scale”. I sent an email to traditions to see what they say.
If you are happy with your current loads accuracy & it's producing tight groups...sounds like a change in sights(sighting) is your only issue. I know some take a full, fine etc bead while aiming which can greatly effect elevation depending on particulars gun's open sights.. Something to think about.
 

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Replace your front sight with a higher version.

My GPH flintlock is 1:32, I think for practical purposes close enough to 1:28. Never met an appropriately chosen powerbelt that I haven't liked. 90gr T7 3F for everything 350 gr and under, 80gr T7 3F for anything over 350gr. Depending on grain (290-348) 1630-1650 fps, sight in at 100 with 3" groups, 6" groups 6" low at 150.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Replace your front sight with a higher version.

My GPH flintlock is 1:32, I think for practical purposes close enough to 1:28. Never met an appropriately chosen powerbelt that I haven't liked. 90gr T7 3F for everything 350 gr and under, 80gr T7 3F for anything over 350gr. Depending on grain (290-348) 1630-1650 fps, sight in at 100 with 3" groups, 6" groups 6" low at 150.
actually I heard back from traditions today and they are sending me a different front sight. I’d assume it is taller.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Update....

Traditions sent me the new front sight free of charge and no discussion. It is neatly 1/4” taller than the original. By the part number it is the factory sight from a vortec. The only complaint that I have is that my rifle came with Williams fire sights and this front blade is plastic. I installed it and will get it to the range ASAP. If it corrects things, at least I’ll have measurements to use and order a Williams blade. I want to get a ghost ring for it anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Got the new front blade from traditions and finally got out to the range with it on Friday. Shot this theee shot group at 50yds with 250gr hornady sst sabots over 80gr goex fffg. Still need practice at longer yardage but at least I know the rifle is up to the job.
 

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If it is ok I want to piggyback this thread. I too was looking at purchasing one of the Traditions Ultralights. I am reading these posts and maybe misunderstanding. With my current ML I shoot .50 cal round ball (.015 patch) with 55 gr of 3F down the barrel and 4F for ignition. I use loose real powder. I know I would have to buy the ML and play with the load but I thought I was seeing 100+ gr of powder being suggested. I am still pretty new at the whole ML thing but that just seemed so high compared to what I am used to. Not saying it is wrong just seeking some clarity if I do purchase .
 

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Got the new front blade from traditions and finally got out to the range with it on Friday. Shot this theee shot group at 50yds with 250gr hornady sst sabots over 80gr goex fffg. Still need practice at longer yardage but at least I know the rifle is up to the job.
Looks good Cscott. BTW I've heard the Powerbelt type bullets referred to as "belted" by many.
 
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