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General discussion => Black Powder Shooting => Topic started by: Hutch on August 09, 2021, 03:22:09 AM

Title: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 09, 2021, 03:22:09 AM
I know this has probably been asked a million times, but I'm hot and tired and can't get my search on tonight. 

I didn't think to look for patches until after I shot tonight.  My guess is I'm too tight on my combo but would like to hear from the more experienced folks.  Also from the ones I found it looks like they got worse as my vote got dirtier.

I'm trying to figure out my hawken likes for charge(finally after just plinking for 10+ years with it).  Using a .495 ball and .015 patch.  Started at 50grains 2F and made it up to 80 before I got too hot and jumped in the pool.  Shot 5 shots at 50grains, ran a spit patch, then went to 60 etc.  Groups don't look terrible for shooting offhand, but could definitely could improve, most likely my fault.  Anyways.  Here's a patch pic. 
(https://i.ibb.co/ZK0vp2k/20210808-190759.jpg) (https://ibb.co/NpMfdTH)
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 09, 2021, 03:23:14 AM
I should add the patches are the daisy shaped ones from October country.  So if they look funny shaped that's why. 
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Stoner creek on August 09, 2021, 03:48:16 AM
Your conclusions are correct. Try a .490 and then experiment with different thicknesses of patch. Those patches that you show may have been cut-torn while loading. In any case, they look terrible now. Your groups are not going to be consistent beyond 25 yards with your current patch/ball configuration.
 Another possibility: If your rifle loads easily now itís possible that the lands of your rifling may be sharp and in need of lapping.
 Iím just tossing out possibilities here.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 09, 2021, 04:02:03 AM
Well I was using my brass range rod so loading wasn't bad, but definitely got noticeably worse.  I've actually taken some scotch Brite to this bore and polished it before.   Unfortunately it was neglected during it's early years.  I've learned some since then lol! I don't have any .490 on my but I do have some smaller patches.  I think .10 is all though.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: smylee grouch on August 09, 2021, 06:21:21 AM
If you want to work up a good load you need to try a lot of combos. Check and smooth the crown, don't use a short starter that pinches the patch when loading, try some different lubes, shoot from a bench and take notes and save targets. Only change one variable at a time.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Jeff Murray on August 09, 2021, 07:55:44 AM
If you have access to a bore light or pin light flashlight check the condition of the bore.  You mentioned it was neglected.  It could have some rough pitting down close to the breech that is cutting your patches.  If a .15 patch is blowing up going to a smaller diameter ball as suggested will likely work better than a thinner patch.  You might also try cleaning between each shot and using a commercial lube rather than a spit patch until you get it figured out.  good luck.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 09, 2021, 03:16:26 PM
I've dropped a light down it before I polished it (and after) and it looks fine.  I did notice yesterday I had a tight spot a few inches above the powder though.  I'll have to remember to drop it down and look again.  Really need to invest in a bore scope one of these days. 

The patches are prelubed, I think October country uses their own breed of lube, can't recall the name of it though.    I just ran a spit patch for cleaning.  I switched to black solve soaked patch for cleaning when it got a little dirtier. 

I definitely got a lot of work to do on getting it dialed in.  Really just needs to be good enough to shoot a deer at 50yds or so.  I'll spend more time with the Kibler when I get it ready to shoot.  This one just keeps me entertained until I get it done 😂😂
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Don Steele on August 10, 2021, 09:53:55 PM
Hutch,
Cleaning the bore and smoothing the crown are excellent things to do, no question. I highly recommend both. Unless you have some kind of really weird barrel, a .495 ball and .015 patch with those modest powder charges is NOT blowing up your patches. In your last entry you noted that youíre using PRE-lubed patches from October Country. Pre-lubed patches are notorious for failing as they age.
Iíve also observed the same issue when I tried to use pre-lubed patch material that I made up and stored for what was apparently too long. Get some plain ( lube-free ) patch material and pick any of the hundreds of patch lubes and I suspect youíll find youíre not going to be blowing out patches.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 10, 2021, 10:04:04 PM
Shoot they are only a few months old.  But they do feel dry.  In fact the other day when I shot I thought I had bought nunlubed ones and used some lube I had sitting here.  I did order some new balls, looks like I'm gonna become one of those "cut at the muzzle" guys next 😂
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Don Steele on August 10, 2021, 11:30:38 PM
Did you buy them a few months ago, or do you know for a fact that they were lubed and packaged a few months ago ?
You can still buy non-lubed precut patches and apply whatever lube you want to use, as needed.
I purchase bulk material, cut my own patches and lube each one individually as Iím loading. Iíve used my own prelubed patches but donít let them get more than a month old before using them up.
Just a few thoughts. Hope this helps.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: rich pierce on August 10, 2021, 11:43:13 PM
(Dad joke). Are Reading patches different from Lancaster patches? How about Bedford patches?  Tennessee patches?
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: smallpatch on August 11, 2021, 12:00:02 AM
Tighter patch and ball combo, liquid lube.
Iíve crowned multiple barrels with Joeís tools, and never an issue.
All of the new things you used were a recipe for problems.  Too small a ball, too loose a patch and pre lubed patches.
.005Ē under size ball, .018Ē to .020Ē patches, liquid lube, 70g of powder Will get you in the ballpark.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: MuskratMike on August 11, 2021, 12:23:21 AM
Not to get too far off topic, who has actually had a problem shooting precut prelubed patches that have sat around for a few months. I have patches that were lubed last year that I just shot. I picked them up and seriously could have reshot them with a little new lube added.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Keith Zimmerman on August 11, 2021, 12:51:01 AM
I agree with muskratmike.  Ive been shooting patches Ive lubed up last year in Altoids tins, and they look great after the shot.  I could use them again.

Try putting a felt wad between the powder and patch.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Bsharp on August 11, 2021, 01:57:39 AM
Tighter patch and ball combo, liquid lube.
Iíve crowned multiple barrels with Joeís tools, and never an issue.
All of the new things you used were a recipe for problems.  Too small a ball, too loose a patch and pre lubed patches.
.005Ē under size ball, .018Ē to .020Ē patches, liquid lube, 70g of powder Will get you in the ballpark.

If you do this and still have torn patches, something is wrong in the bore!

50 to 70 grains of 2f won't blow up a patch that fits tight.

No felt or over powder wad is needed, something in the bore needs attention!
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Don Steele on August 11, 2021, 02:28:54 AM
Mike and Keith,
Iíve had prelubed patches fail miserably when they had been stored in sealed containers in my air conditioned den. I have observed it with a couple of different lubricants. I enjoy trying different ball/ patch/ lube combinations. Sometimes that leaves me with prelubed patches on the shelf. Unfortunately I have never put tracking dates on the containers so I canít provide any specific shelf life information. Itís possible the failed patches could have been a year old, possibly even a little more.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: smylee grouch on August 11, 2021, 02:37:12 AM
I think it's been hinted at but what lube and where they are stored might make a big difference in the shelf life of the pre lubed patches. I too have had pre lubed patches fail and they were aprox 6 months old.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 11, 2021, 05:17:09 AM
I almost hate to ask it.  What lube should I start with?

This should be interesting....😂
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: rich pierce on August 11, 2021, 05:21:03 AM
Iíve had mink oil lubed patches last a year with no issues.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: MuskratMike on August 11, 2021, 05:23:00 AM
Pillow ticking and T.O.T.W. mink oil/grease or 100% neat's-foot oil. A year or two later they shoot like new and show no degradation and actually can be re-lubed and shot again.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 11, 2021, 05:32:35 AM
Pillow ticking and T.O.T.W. mink oil/grease or 100% neat's-foot oil. A year or two later they shoot like new and show no degradation and actually can be re-lubed and shot again.

Dang I just put an order to track the other day! I think I have some neats foot around here somewheres though, I'll give that a try.  That said, will that work ok for hunting also? It doesn't get terribly cold here but wanna be in the same side.  Also, how much do you use?
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Stoner creek on August 11, 2021, 05:41:11 AM
Pillow ticking and T.O.T.W. mink oil/grease or 100% neat's-foot oil. A year or two later they shoot like new and show no degradation and actually can be re-lubed and shot again.
Re-lubed and shot again? Come on man! You got to be kidding me. Iíve shot competition for 40 years with some of the tightest tight-wads in the history of mankind and nobody re-uses spent patches. Come on man!!!
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: MuskratMike on August 11, 2021, 06:35:25 AM
When at the range and they are just lying there why not. I am not cheap I just like getting a bang for my buck. The 1st time I actually did reuse a patch was doing some load devolopment and i just wanted to see if the 5 patches I picked up and re-lubed shot any different, they didn't.
To Hutch; I hunt in some cold weather (below zero) to 90 degrees F. and have never experienced any issue in using either mink oil/grease or pure Neatsfoot oil.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 11, 2021, 03:08:18 PM
I've been losing some sleep over this.  The more I think about it the more I think I may have something wrong with my barrel.  Looking at the bag closer these patches are actually .018.  That combined with the smaller balls and how hard it gets to load at times I'm really considering doing something with the barrel.  A quick search isn't showing much for direct replacements.  I would prefer to keep it cheap, I paid $75 for the whole gun back in 05 so hate to dump a ton in it.  Especially when I got the Kibler.  Would having it bored be an option? I guess I'm just curious what my options are.  It sure looks fine with the light, but I'm inexperienced in this stuff and could be missing something. 
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: bob in the woods on August 11, 2021, 03:47:16 PM
What depth of grooves in that barrel ?   Some of the imports I've seen have very shallow rifling.
This combined with a less than optimum lube could contribute to the patch problem. What's the crown like ?  That's the first thing I usually check
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 11, 2021, 03:57:14 PM
What depth of grooves in that barrel ?   Some of the imports I've seen have very shallow rifling.
This combined with a less than optimum lube could contribute to the patch problem. What's the crown like ?  That's the first thing I usually check

That's something I will have to check tonight.  I sure thought it all looked good a month or so back when I did the polished thing.  I'll try and get some more info and pics tonight. 
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: hanshi on August 12, 2021, 12:38:38 AM
If the grooves are a decent depth I'll humbly suggest the following.  Polish the crown so starting the ball won't cut the patches.  A .490" (.50) ball is fine but a thicker patch may be called for.  I refuse to ever use bought patches in my rifles.  I buy good material and cut my own and use my favorite lubes, TOW mink oil and Hoppes #9 BP Lube.  My favorite patching material is unbleached heavy canvas, about .023" or .024".  Experiment a bit with an op wad.  Good shooting!
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 12, 2021, 01:10:06 AM
So it's really hard to get a decent picture of the bore of the gun! I do see some light surface rust, I'm assuming from cleaning a couple days ago, that is getting addressed after this message.  One thing I noticed right off is about 6-8" down there is a ring going around the bore perpendicular to the grooves.  Aside from that and the aforementioned surface rust I don't see any major pitting or anything.  The rifling does look to be very shallow though.  The pictures are hard to see but they do make it look really bad! I wish I had a bore scope or least access to one. 

(https://i.ibb.co/RCvpyR5/20210811-170746.jpg) (https://ibb.co/55MWFb7)

(https://i.ibb.co/sQ8q4yv/20210811-170614.jpg) (https://ibb.co/VDfTG2W)

image img (https://imgbb.com/)
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Keith Zimmerman on August 12, 2021, 03:46:08 AM
I have no issues with my patches lubed with bore butter or Tracks mink oil from a year or more.  I shoot quite a bit so they never get much older than that.  I keep them in tins which works fine.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: bob in the woods on August 12, 2021, 06:17:24 AM
Photo number 2 is very enlightening.  That bore looks like garbage to my eyes. 
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: duca on August 12, 2021, 07:18:54 AM
OMG! Really!?! Thatís Hirable!!
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Daryl on August 12, 2021, 07:41:31 AM
So it's really hard to get a decent picture of the bore of the gun! I do see some light surface rust, I'm assuming from cleaning a couple days ago, that is getting addressed after this message.  One thing I noticed right off is about 6-8" down there is a ring going around the bore perpendicular to the grooves.  Aside from that and the aforementioned surface rust I don't see any major pitting or anything.  The rifling does look to be very shallow though.  The pictures are hard to see but they do make it look really bad! I wish I had a bore scope or least access to one. 

(https://i.ibb.co/RCvpyR5/20210811-170746.jpg) (https://ibb.co/55MWFb7)

(https://i.ibb.co/sQ8q4yv/20210811-170614.jpg) (https://ibb.co/VDfTG2W)


Hutch - I concur with Bob in the Woods, MOST heartedly - along with Smallpatch. The bore seems to show some (horrid) pitting, full length. Now we managed to salvage two barrels were not this bad by any stroke of the immagination, one with lapping twice with a lead lap cast on a tapered rod, with valve grinding compounds, the other with simply maroon Scotch Brte on a jag, both with WD 40 to help lube the lapping.

I've been away for a time, this summer, but concur with many of the suggestions, especially about addressing the crown. To load a "good" tight combination, you need a smoothed crown as many of the guys have suggested. On this topic, the crown appears to be quite nice.

I now include a normal "store bought crown" that cuts patches even before they are fired, as well as a corrected crowns that no longer cut patches, NO MATTER HOW TIGHT. Your  current crown is not one of those. The pictures show a badly neglected bore - one that has gone many seasons without being cleaned, correctly - pitted beyond help.

(https://i.ibb.co/Vm3s490/stretchman-s-muzzle-before.jpg) (https://ibb.co/rsvVr0K)
(https://i.ibb.co/LJcKp59/stretchman-s-muzzle-after.jpg) (https://ibb.co/61TQsBD)

All this, as I said, your last picture shows a horrid condition of a bore. I would think of sending it to re-boring and rifling by Bobby Hoyte.
This picture's muzzle appears to be beyond restoration.
Rich Pierce, of this forum, also does restoration work in the form of "freshing" rifling. Talk to him.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 12, 2021, 02:06:24 PM
Sigh.....


I've been trying to lie to myself about this barrel for years.  Thank you guys for waking me up. 

A little backstory.  This was my first muzzleloader.  I bought it when I had no cash back in college but the gun shop only wanted $75, I couldn't not own it!  Think I spent that much more on materials for shooting on a later date.  Back then I had 0 guidance, just the guy at the gun shop that deals in more modern stuff.  So it got shop for several years with triple 7 or some of that substitute $#@* and then not cleaned the best(obviously).  After shooting one day I was cleaning it with my regular gun cleaning kit (didn't know better!) And broke the plastic cleaning jag.  About the same time I was starting a family and jobs and it just ended up sitting for way more years than I care to admit.  I finally got it a few years back and have been trying to shoot it with poor results.  Finally resulting to asking for advice and I don't know why I didn't before! Gonna be a very expensive dumb mistake but I guess that's the best way to learn.  Now I know what not to do on my Kibler when I get it done 😂😂

I will get in contact with those guys you mentioned.  Is bobby Hoyt on here too? I can't find a website for him anywhere.  I might be better off just getting a replacement barrel too. 


Again thank you guys for your honesty and for the help! It's greatly appreciated!

Carl Hutchison
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Daryl on August 12, 2021, 07:04:06 PM
Best wishes in your endeavour, Carl.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 12, 2021, 07:09:41 PM
Best wishes in your endeavour, Carl.

Thank you. 

I talked with both Rich and Bobby today.  Both are awesome! I think Bobby is gonna be more what I need.  Rich didn't sound like he could go up a full size, as cool as having something different like a .51 sounds I don't think that would be best for me.  I'm looking forward to getting this thing fixed right, and more importantly taking care of it RIGHT this time around.  Another plus, I've been wanting to brown the barrel, and change sights, so this is a great excuse to do it. 

Gonna have to get some .54 loading and cleaning stuff but that's not the end of the world. 


One concern I have while I'm thinking about it.  Ramrod.  It has one of those plastic feeling rods.  I'm not s huge fan of it really.  But my big question is, how much difference in rods is there, if any, between .50 and. 54? Both are a 3/8 rod aren't they? Just a different end? 

Thanks y'all!
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 12, 2021, 09:28:10 PM
Quick question so I don't have to harass Bobby again, I know he's busy.  Do you just toss a check in the box with he barrel or something when you send it?
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: smallpatch on August 13, 2021, 03:50:38 AM
Bobby will send an invoice back with the returned barrel.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 13, 2021, 03:52:17 AM
Bobby will send an invoice back with the returned barrel.

Thank you sir
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: hanshi on August 13, 2021, 08:28:28 PM
You won't regret letting Bobby Hoyt make it into a new barrel.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 13, 2021, 08:37:47 PM
You won't regret letting Bobby Hoyt make it into a new barrel.

I got all the stuff pulled off of it except the plug and drum last night.  Gonna strip the blue over the weekend and give it a coat of gun grease before I send it to him.  I'll brown it when it comes back I think.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: yellowhousejake on August 14, 2021, 01:28:06 AM
Pillow ticking and T.O.T.W. mink oil/grease or 100% neat's-foot oil. A year or two later they shoot like new and show no degradation and actually can be re-lubed and shot again.
Re-lubed and shot again? Come on man! You got to be kidding me. Iíve shot competition for 40 years with some of the tightest tight-wads in the history of mankind and nobody re-uses spent patches. Come on man!!!

I tried to reuse spent patches once and it was a disaster. By the time I got to the third patch I nearly threw up. It took three whiskys to get the taste out of my mouth. I almost gave up on spit patch after that.

DAve
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: MuskratMike on August 14, 2021, 01:33:19 AM
Probably the best reason i have ever herd of why not to use spit patches and use grease or oil. Did make me laugh, thanks for posting it.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Hutch on August 14, 2021, 05:22:27 AM
Pillow ticking and T.O.T.W. mink oil/grease or 100% neat's-foot oil. A year or two later they shoot like new and show no degradation and actually can be re-lubed and shot again.
Re-lubed and shot again? Come on man! You got to be kidding me. Iíve shot competition for 40 years with some of the tightest tight-wads in the history of mankind and nobody re-uses spent patches. Come on man!!!

I tried to reuse spent patches once and it was a disaster. By the time I got to the third patch I nearly threw up. It took three whiskys to get the taste out of my mouth. I almost gave up on spit patch after that.

DAve

😂😂😂😂
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: hanshi on August 14, 2021, 08:17:28 PM
Me?  I'd just skip the spit patch and go directly to the whiskey.  ;D
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Silent Walker on September 02, 2021, 12:43:37 AM
Me?  I'd just skip the spit patch and go directly to the whiskey.  ;D

(https://c.tenor.com/0UiTzxP3mjAAAAAM/monkey-rofl.gif)
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: utseabee on September 02, 2021, 02:44:31 AM
Sending it to Bobby will be the best thing you can do for this barrel. I am sure it will shoot great when he is done. Bobby is a great guy to deal with.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Mike_StL on September 03, 2021, 04:06:49 AM
I was perplexed.  I wanted to test my HF Rifle for an upcoming out of the pouch shoot.  My favorite accuracy load was 65 grains of 3fg GOEX pushing a 0.535" swaged ball wrapped in a 0.017" thick cotton drill patch dampened in 1 part Water Soluble Oil and 7 parts of Water. This is a tight load and I need a short starter to get the ball loaded. I shot 5 times from a rest at 25 yards and got a reasonable group.  Patches looked good. No tears.

(https://i.ibb.co/1RS2NXg/Sierra-Exif-JPEG.jpg) (https://ibb.co/7r9yDpf)

Now I went to shoot the easy loading group.  The only change was the use of a 0.520" swaged ball wrapped in a 0.010" thick patch dampened in the 1 part WSO and 7 parts water.  The load of 65 grains 3fg GOEX was used.  Same rest and same 6 o'clock hold on the target.  NO need for a short starter and easy to load. I also didn't wipe between shots.  Got the same reasonable group just opened up a bit.  But look at the shredded patches.

(https://i.ibb.co/9hp5mhp/Sierra-Exif-JPEG.jpg) (https://ibb.co/5k1HXk1)

The rifle shot good at the from the pouch match.  Better than I did.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Marcruger on September 03, 2021, 01:49:04 PM
Hello Mike StL,

I will share this in the spirit of being helpful, not critical.  I believe that you need to work on your load in both cases. 

A 50 yards, I strive to get three or five shots touching off the bench.  My eye sight doesn't allow me to do that every time, but I am working for that.  In your case, I am seeing 2.5" to 3" bench-rested groups at 25 yards.  That would be a large 5" to 6" group at 50 yards.  Your "reasonable" accuracy may be different than mine though.

My suggestion would be to circle back to the basics, and focus on changing one thing at a time.  Ladder up your charges five grains at a time, and see if your groups tighten.  You never know with rifles, but that charge for a .54 seems a little light for a best accuracy load.  It may be what your rifle likes after checking, but I believe it is worth a try.  I listen for the rifle report to change from "Pop" to "CRACK!" to know if I am approaching an accurate load. 

In reading the patches, I am a little surprised on first blush at how the thicker patches are that black.  I am wondering why.  A .535 ball with a .017 patch should work well if the weave is strong and tight.  Yes, that load will be tight going down.  2f is traditionally considered for a .54 accuracy powder, but many get good results with 3f.  It might be worth testing 2f in your .54 to see if things improve. 

That points me to your patch lube.  Perhaps give a try wet-lubing with Mr Flintlock Lube or the super-slippery Hoppes BlackPowder Cleaner & Lube.  Either is really good, and may improve things.  Again, I'd change one thing at a time and test.  My first change would be your patch lube. 

Your second group is showing you things.  Your patches are way too thin at 0.010", and are getting blown apart.  No need to test that any more.  Frankly, a well loaded smoothbore would beat 2.5" to 3" at 25 yards. 

.52" ball plus .010" patching on each side gives you .54" total.  Your grooves were not filled at all.  Assuming you have, say, .012" grooves, you have .54" bore plus .012" groove plus .012" groove = .564" to fill with a .54" patch and ball combo.  You are not sealing at all, and your charge is blowing by and destroying your patches.  This blow-by of gasses means erratic and lower velocities, shown by you group printing lower on target.  If you are using something like deep-grooved round-bottom rifling, you'll need even thicker patching.  In any event, toss that .010 patching as it is not helping you. 

Your .535 ball and .017 patching combo gives you .569" combined, in a bore that is .564" if you have .012 grooves.  So your thicker combo is sealing, but not in an extravagant manner. 

Again, I'd try changing your lube first, and you may find it loads easier with the same .017 patching.  Then I'd ladder up the powder charge and test for accuracy. 

(https://i.ibb.co/znwN1hh/Target-11-20-IMG-7428.jpg) (https://ibb.co/yfJVDnn)
This was the first five shots out of a clean barrel at 50 yards, and I was happy with that.  Shot #1 was the one out of a clean barrel that printed out of the group.  I wish my eyes could do this every time.  I was testing a wet lube on this day, and the barrel liked it a lot. 

(https://i.ibb.co/ZVM8P7J/Patches.jpg) (https://ibb.co/hymWjwM)
These patches from The Minute-Men patching company look like I'd expect when cut at the muzzle.  My test patching passes the test when I cannot see sunlight through a fired patch.  The Minute-Men patching always passes the test.  It is a very densely woven canvas.  I buy their untreated (versus teflon coated) patching, and wash it before use. 

(https://i.ibb.co/cFs5nBb/IMG-7973.jpg) (https://ibb.co/G2rwS6s)
This is how to find The Minute-Men patching.  The website does not work, but he answers the phone in the evenings. 

I hope all of this helps a little.  God Bless,  Marc
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Mike_StL on September 03, 2021, 05:42:48 PM
Thanks for the good information Marc.  I have had better groups from that rifle on different days.  I expected the groups with the way undersized ball and patches to open up quite a bit.  I did not expect to see the same sized group as the other groups shot on the same day, under the same conditions.  I agree I do need 1, more practice, and 2, more load development. 
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: MuskratMike on September 03, 2021, 06:45:44 PM
Unless the 2nd batch of photos were a misprint, .520 balls are just a wee too small. I have the best luck with .530 balls and .017 ticking and mink oil/grease or neatsfoot oil. However that is my load in my rifle. Back to the bench and have some fun doing load development.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Mike_StL on September 03, 2021, 10:02:56 PM
I knew when I started this shooting experiment that the 0.520" balls and the 0.010" thick patch were way undersized.  I was curious how such knowingly undersized, but very easy to load would perform.  I didn't perform that good, but the easy loading balls and patch didn't do anything much different tightly loaded set up.

Good observations, Mike.
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: hanshi on September 03, 2021, 11:13:19 PM
Thicker patching and tighter loads are generally more accurate and give higher velocities; they keep the fouling level down some too.  The patches will be reusable in most cases as well.  I often find my fired patches appear to have no indication, other than frayed edges, they'd ever been sent down a bore.   
Title: Re: Reading patches
Post by: Daryl on September 15, 2021, 06:56:03 AM
I knew when I started this shooting experiment that the 0.520" balls and the 0.010" thick patch were way undersized.  I was curious how such knowingly undersized, but very easy to load would perform.  I didn't perform that good, but the easy loading balls and patch didn't do anything much different tightly loaded set up.

Good observations, Mike.

The reason the groups were not much different, is that you were only shooting 25 yards.
This is a 28 yard 5-shot group shot with my 20 bore flint fowler, no rear sight.

(https://i.ibb.co/7VnByCy/OLYMPUS-DIGITAL-CAMERA.jpg) (https://ibb.co/L6xBpRp)

hahaha smileys (https://emoticoncentral.com/category/hahaha)