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Discussion Starter #1
i have a 50 cal. pa longrifle with 1 in 66 turn which is supposed to shoot round balls only. anybody shoot anything else except round balls with any accuracy?
 

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Hornady Pa. Conical's. These are 240gr. in weight as opposed to a round ball that are 180gr. in weight.

To load these you don't necessarily need a bore button between the conical and powder, but I always put one there to keep the lube from getting "into" the powder.

The Conical's are just as accurate as any RB, easier to load, and provide a much harder "Whack" to the whitetail. They also open up a larger wound channel and allow for a bit more blood to flow.

The other plus is these are not expensive to buy.

SW
 

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the use of conicals in a round ball barrel depends a bit on the shape and configuration of the rifling. If the rifling is too deep, there is blow by that can partially melt the bullet.
 

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I actually paper patch mine for the (1/66) TC PA Hunter barrel. It has a .010 groove depth (at least it was advertised that way). They shoot good bare but I really like a conical to be pretty snug so it has no chance of slipping off the charge. I do need to swab the barrel very clean each time but I am ok with that. The conical and ball are very close to the same impact at 75 yards.

I have not tried them in my GM 1/70 twist drop-in .50 caliber yet so I don't know how they will shoot out of it. It is advertised as .012 groove depth. With either I doubt that it's reaching 1800 fps with a 100 grain charge so I don't think the barrels will be leading up at all. I think we did shoot them from a GM barrel a couple years back and we had to shorten them with a file a little to keep them stabilized.

Another thing that I tried for a few shots and seemed to work just fine was a mmp short black sabot with a .452 Hornady 250 grain pistol bullet. My memory of it was that it did stabilize and was quite accurate but the group was about 3" from the bull and in the direction of the twist of the barrel. I have 2 PA Hunter barrels and one has a left hand twist and the other is right hand.

My hard drive burnt up a couple of years ago and I lost all my notes and pic's of targets and loads data for my flinters so I have to go by my memory and it's old.
 

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My experience with the Hornady Conicals has been nothing but good. I find them very easy to load....much easier than a PRB, as I simply dump the powder charge, put a bore button on the top of the tube, and then the Conical goes down the tube until it rest against the charge.

The Conical is much easier to push down the barrel on second, third, or fourth shots without a swabbing, (and when I do swab I use an alcohol patch).

The Conical is designed for the small "hollow" skirt to expand into the rifling of the barrel when the powder is ignited, so no blowby occurs and thus, no barrel leading.

The bore button seems to do some-what of a clean up of any real heavy residue in the barrel. I do get tighter groups using a bore button that not using one.

In any event, I'm sold on the Pa. Conical for accuracy and for better wound channels on deer.

SW
 

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Discussion Starter #7
thank you for the input.
my rifle is a custom made rifle made in York, Pa. It has a GM barrell. i'm anxious now to try the conical. the accuracy of the RB is ok but i'm not comfortablw with the killing power. i used to shoot maxi-balls out of my TC Hawken and it had plenty-o killing power. i got two deer with one shot one year. i was close to the deer and the deer were close to each other. it put them both down.
 

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Roundball works fine for me as long as I hold the range down to about 60 yards. I can hit just fine a longer ranges but I don't trust the roundballs at those ranges. I know others opinions differ from mine but I have used roundball enough to know what works and what doesn't for me anyway.

The sabots work ok but I don't get the expansion I would like with them. They do take deer just fine and if I use them again it will be shoulder shots with a 300 grainer. I have taken a few and seen a few taken with the ball-et type bullets; one of my rifles likes them and I like the results and blood trails with them--an improvement over the roundball in my opinion. The big Great Plains conicals in 385 or 410 will probably work better than anything but I don't know for sure---yet! The twist rate is 1/28 for the conicals and sabot rounds though.
 

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The problem with the heavier conicals is that the slow twist rate of rifles purpose-built for patched round balls is not fast enough to stabilize the bullet and it will have a tendancy to yaw and tumble. Plus the rifling is usually not designed to bite into the all lead bullet by anything other than the short hollow base, leaving much of the body of the bullet with very little to no rifling contact at all. The PA Conical or the 245 gr. Powerbelt hollow point will usually shoot well to VERY WELL in most rifles with 1:66 twist barrels as they are short in relation to the overall weight of the projectile ad the PA Conical is designed with a very deep hollow base and softer skirt to obturate (expand) and engage the rifling better.
 

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The other problem with hollow base conicals is that too much powder blows out the skirt when the bullet leaves the muzzle. A blown skirt blows all accuracy to heck. In civil war minnie balls (58) caliber usually 450 to 500 grains, it was found that 55 to 65 grains shot best and over 80 grains blew out the skirts causing accuracy to resemble a shot gun.

The Lyman Black Powder Manual has a time snap photo of a minnie with the skirt blown out. All kinds of "aerodrag" and loss of range and accuracy. MJY is also right about slow spin short conicals. They pitch and yawl so much that the path down range can look like a cork screw. With shallower rifling, some conicals may do well. But also keep in mind that under 75 yards, the faster speed of a round ball actually equals greater energy than the slower moving slightly heavier conical. Past 75 to 100, the conical retains energy better due to it's better aerodynamic shape and simple inertia due to the extra weight. But beware also, that some conicals are rather flat nosed and actually have less aerodynamics than a round ball.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
i don't have much time to go the range like i should to develope a load (bullet and powder). i'm not one to reinvent the wheel, so i ask those who have already been there and done that for their knowledge.
does anyone have a recommended load for a 50cal. 1-in-66 twist GM barrel flint lock? i want to shoot Hornady Pa. conicals. in the past i've been using 100gr. of FFg with a PRB. i want to step up to a heavier projectile so i'm going to the 240gr conical.
 

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I love the PRB as is all I,ll ever use.I retrieved a very mangled and expanded ball in the deer I got in 2009.So for all of the comments sayin that the good ole ball doesn,t expand,distort,or cause any hemmoraging that is acceptable is a bunch of bunk.I have kept the flattened mangled sharp edged ball in my accessories case for a keepsake.
 

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the accuracy of the RB is ok but i'm not comfortable with the killing power. .
All I know is, the deer I shot this year wasn't too comfortable after being hit with a round ball. In fact it didn't move after being hit.

I think you are selling the roundball short with regards to killing power. Hit right with a RB, and the deer goes down. Hit wrong with a conical and the deer will still run....Its all about shot placement my friend.
 

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All I know is, the deer I shot this year wasn't too comfortable after being hit with a round ball. In fact it didn't move after being hit.

...Its all about shot placement my friend.
Truer words have never been spoken. PRB put my doe down this year and went though and through. Doubt Ill ever need any thing more than a PRB.
 
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Just bought a pack of 100 RB's for my Pa Pellet rifle. Wife bought it as last years Christmas gift with power belts...Groups were TERRIBLE! Looking to shoot these roundballs here soon to gain confidence with this gun...1/48 twist.
 

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I've had some good 60 yard groups from 1-66 and 1-70 barrels using Lee 250 gr REAL bullets. Put 3 shots in 1" or less with 80 gr of 3f powder, no wad, lubed with beeswax/ bore butter. Have not yet shot an critters yet with these. I've also shot good groups with Hornady PA conical. I bought the Lee mold when the Hornady bullet was unavailable.
 
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