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I am counting the days til muzzleloader comes in. I have witnessed some guys that are amazing shots. So I thought I'd ask the following question.

What is the greatest distance you can accurately shoot your muzzleloader offhand and with a rest(good conditions, open woods)?
 

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off hand, 50-60. did shoot one at 70 a couple years ago off hand, but would prefer closer. rest, 100 wouldn't be a problem.
 

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I feel confident too 100 yards offhand. though in all my years fo hunting with a flintlock i have only taken one at that distance. Most were under 50 yards.
 

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I bought a long range hunter green mnt barrel in 45 cal and then had the smitty convert it to flintlock for my renegade .I can hit 100 yards with ease and have taken one deer at 150 yards [img:center]
 

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long hunter said:
I feel confident too 100 yards offhand. though in all my years fo hunting with a flintlock i have only taken one at that distance. Most were under 50 yards.
Depends on how big the bull is for me!


The OP's question is hard to answer... or may be I'm reading too much into it? Anyone going to organized BP shoots around the state are well practiced at 100..or even 25. Wind, lighting, the target itself can make or break paper target accuracy at any range. One day you're on, and the next you're not. It doesn't take much on some paper targets to be completely off.

On a foot high standing bear image at 100 yards does the crotch count for accuracy? It doesn't score anything so I figure it doesn't. Would like to go home thinking I'm doing OK.
 

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Any one here shoot at the Blue Mountain shoots in Shartlesville? I need to get to them this coming year. Just a little nervous to get started, but I need to!
 

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Curly Maple said:
long hunter said:
I feel confident too 100 yards offhand. though in all my years fo hunting with a flintlock i have only taken one at that distance. Most were under 50 yards.
Depends on how big the bull is for me!


The OP's question is hard to answer... or may be I'm reading too much into it? Anyone going to organized BP shoots around the state are well practiced at 100..or even 25. Wind, lighting, the target itself can make or break paper target accuracy at any range. One day you're on, and the next you're not. It doesn't take much on some paper targets to be completely off.

On a foot high standing bear image at 100 yards does the crotch count for accuracy? It doesn't score anything so I figure it doesn't. Would like to go home thinking I'm doing OK.
yep, reading wayyyyyyyyyyyy too much into it!
 

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tdd said:
Any one here shoot at the Blue Mountain shoots in Shartlesville? I need to get to them this coming year. Just a little nervous to get started, but I need to!
I havent shot there in a few years. They are a great bunch of guys and gals. They will make you feel welcome and are always looking for some new shooters.
 

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For all you guys using a rest, that's fine. You have to get the rifle sighted in! To just like learning to walk, you have to let go. Practice, practice, and practice some more....off hand. The majority of shot opportunities at game will require an offhand hold.

Flintlock hunting is something in which even the most experienced know when they start out the day they're probably going to suffer a screw up. Sometimes controllable, sometimes not. Ol' Mr Murphy is always hoping to be someone's wingman and flintlocks attract him.

Everyone I know who has stayed with it, has learned not to take the flubs to heart.

So you had a shot and the rifle didn't go off?...you had some degree of success! Had to pass up a shot that could have been made with a centerfire?...you did something right! Miss?..the same thing! All gets deposited in memory bank and if they can't be placed in the positive column? Not every sport is for everyone. Season either.
 

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I practice at 50 and 100 yards. Normally I'll start on a rest and then shoot off hand. When I hunt I shoot off hand, I just lock in and fire. I'll shoot up to 100 yards.
 

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I'll shoot 50 yds off-hand and have killed deer as far. With a rest I have killed deer out to ~80 yds. The second buck I killed was a late season flintlock 7pt off of a rest a little over 50. All in practicing and becoming proficient and confident!
 

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So here's a question--

What range do folks tend to zero their rifles? I ask, because the trajectory of a muzzleloader, particularly with a round ball, is not exactly "flat," lol.

I've run some numbers, just to get a ballpark idea of what to expect, and the 62-cal I have coming shortly, if zeroed at 80 yards shooting a 0.600 ball with between 80 and 100 gr of FF, will have a max rise of around 2" over point of aim, and fall about 4" below it by 100 yards.

I figured that would give me close to "point and shoot" out to 100, although I'd feel compelled to aim just a smidge higher out there just to be safe.

I'll shoot offhand to 50-60 yards currently. When I actually get my act together and practice more, I'm usually pretty solid to 100. My longest offhand shot on a deer was 90 yards.

I will shoot out to 100 off a shooting stick or shooting rail with little concern. Offhand or "field positions" that don't involve any support other than the position itself, I don't want to go far past 50-60, really.
 

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tdd, search on rb ballistics and go to the sight with the calculator. be sure to save it. I have used this table a lot and it has been very accurate for my .32,.36 and.62 cal. I sight in at 35 yards and have tested the data out to 100 yards and it works very well.
 

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That's actually where I got my ballistics estimates.


I used Quickload for a velocity prediction, then the rb ballistics calculator to go from the vel to a trajectory.

From those sources, it looks like an 80yd zero gives max of 2" high (occurs around 40 yards) and then a drop of 4" at 100. Seems like the best way to roll for shots up to 100 yards to me, but was curious what others do.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
It was interesting to read all of the responses. I'm good to about 50 yds offhand. 75 with a rest. I would love to be able to put in the time to be consistent out to 100 yds offhand. If you think about it, if you can hit a milkjug at 100 yds with a muzzleloader, you are probably doing better than many guys with a scoped rifle.

TDD - that is a really good point that I never really considered.
 
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