Author Topic: 16 gauge starting loads  (Read 8890 times)

Offline Chris in Washington

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16 gauge starting loads
« on: September 28, 2008, 08:18:13 AM »
Well I just finished up my latest attempt at an early Virginian smoothrifle. It has a 44" Colerain barrel.  I ordered some .648 round balls from Track of the Wolf, 25 for $10..kinda pricey.  Going to have to find a mold.  I was thinking about 90 or so grains of FFg with a .010 or so patching for starting out.  Just wondering what everyone else with a 16 gauge is using.  Thank you much for any info. 


Chris
« Last Edit: September 28, 2008, 08:19:23 AM by cdstatz »
Chris Statz

Offline Longknife

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2008, 03:58:36 PM »
Chris, I have a 16, but haven't shot it yet. I do shoot 20, 12's and 11's. I  think though that 90 is kinda on the stout side, maybe a hunting load for a smoothbore. I would start a little lower, say 70 and work up from there. You can then find a "plinking load" and a hunting load. You will know when you hit the "sweet" spot..... Let me know what you find out.....Ed
Ed Hamberg

northmn

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2008, 10:23:19 PM »
There are other threads a few pages back that mentioned smoothbores favoring a smaller ball and thicker patching.  I have shot 20's, an 18, 12's and 11's and find them about the same for general loading as to a general loading style.  90 to 100 grains should be a fair hunting load in a 16 but I think like Longknife you might want to start lighter.  The bigger bores over 20 ga. kick.  My 12 hurts with 100 grains as it only wieghs about 6.5 pounds.

DP

Offline Longknife

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2008, 06:19:38 PM »
DP, yep, you're right about the smooth bores favoring smaller balls. I shoot a .600 in my .62, a .690 in my .729 and a .715 in my .750. It seems the smaller ball/thicker patch combo will keep the bore cleaner but the larger balls will work, ya just have to run a damp patch down when ever they get tight. I have a .648 mold for my .66 also and wiil just have to make them do!!!!!....Ed
Ed Hamberg

Offline Chris in Washington

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2008, 04:46:07 PM »
Thank you Gentlemen.  So far all I can find for casted round ball for sell is the .648 from  Track.  I would like to try a few other sizes before I buy a mold, but just might have to get a .630 mold and hope for the best .  I went out last weekend and shot a few just rounds.  You're right...90gr and up does kick kinda hard but not too bad ;)  Going to work with it some more next weekend.  Also played a little with some #6 shot and #4 buckshot.  Think that I'm going to like this little smoothrifle. 
Thanks again...
Chris
Chris Statz

northmn

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2008, 05:20:13 PM »
I have a lot of experience with a 16, just not a muzzleloader.  I have a Stevens 325 hammer gun that shoots BP cartridges.  With shot, some recommend highly the one ounce load as it is a "square load" meaning the column is about as high as it is wide.  Actually the one ounce load in a 20 gauge is a pretty heavy load.  They never could get "high brass" performance out of it because of that.  7/8 oz is closer to a square load in a 20.  In a ML I do not think that that is as important as it is in a modern gun as you can cushion the load better.  VM Starr used to recommend two card wads and no cushion and had good results with that combo as have others.  I like the cushion wad (a fiber wad) lubricated with Crisco, commercial lubes or even water, to keep the fouling soft, depending on use.  For a general purpose load in my 12Ga which would work in a 16, I use a Rem 45-70 case for both the shot and powder.  It throws about 75 grains of 2f and a little over an ounce of shot.  One of the things about recommending a load is that what works in one, may not do so well in others.  I have seen shotguns perform well with one size of shot and lousy with another.  I likely will someday own a 16 ML to go with my 4 modern ones.  Have fun.

DP


Offline Chris in Washington

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2008, 06:44:00 AM »
Thanks for the shot info... I'll have to try it out next weekend on Grouse.  I was using 60 grains of 3f and shot in my 20gauge with good results. 

Chris
Chris Statz

northmn

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2008, 01:59:26 PM »
I do not know what you used for a shot weight but 60 grains is about 7/8 ounce.  Many do not use equal volume measure of shot and powder depending on their equipment.  Many have a shot snake or flask with an attached measure.  One of the things to look at is the amount of shooting you expect to do with a ML in the field.  I carry at most about a pound of shot for reloads in the field and keep a little extra in the car.  The original styled shot flasks would make you lopsided if you carried them filled.  I have sewed up small leather flasks with stoppers and used pill bottles.  If you shoot at grouse flying with a flintlock you can miss them 16 times with a pound of shot which is a lot of shooting in a day.

DP

Offline Chris in Washington

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2008, 05:09:30 PM »
I have made  a little leather shoot bag that hods enough for about half a dozen loads.  A Friend gave me a Goex can full of shot, I think it's #7 or 6.   For the most part, my partner and I walk old logging roads and edges of clear cuts....so we see only a few birds.  After we get bored looking for grouse, we start stump shooting with round ball...call a spot on the stump.   We always keep a few extra rounds in the truck for expended fun :)

Chris
Chris Statz

Daryl

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2008, 05:54:35 PM »
For a 16 bore's shot load, I'd start with 60gr.2F and single card with fibre cushion wad, then 1oz. shot, then thin "B"card top wad.

 For a round ball load, I'd start at 3 drams 2F - approx. 82gr., and increase from there - probably to 100gr. 2F if it shoots well.  A .640" ball would be the largest I'd shoot- probably get a Tanner .635" mould.  I would prefer to stay with a ball of 400gr. or over, - but?  I've found that in a smoothbore, a ball .025" to .030" is a good size. This allows a substancial patch that holds lots of lube for cleaner shooting, shot to shot.  Mink oil has worked fine for me for hunting when only a few shots are fired - maybe up to 10 or so with heavy charges - in the 16 bore smoothie, you probably won't be shooting heavy charges so mink oil would allow more shots.  Something like neetsfoot oil (not compound) mixed with olive oil, beeswax or just straight would work too.

Offline David Rase

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2008, 02:46:02 AM »
Chris,  I have in my possession a .630 mold I just ordered from NEC for my 16g Tulle.  Have not cast any ball yet but if you get a hold of me I am sure we can work something out since you live so close.
DMR

Offline Chris in Washington

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2008, 07:43:16 AM »
Daryl... thanks for the info.  I do have some Mink oil around here somewhere that I got from Track a while back... have to give it a try. 


Dave...  how is the Tulle coming along?  I appreciate the offer to use your new mold...
I'll have to give you a call next week to work things out.  Thanks

Chris
Chris Statz

Offline ChipK

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2008, 06:15:46 AM »
I have a 16 gauge smooth rifle and I purchased a .648 mold for it.  Once I got the rifle I found the barrel miked at .651 - so I sold the mold.  Since then I purchased a .628 mold from Rapine.  Those shoot great with .020 ticking and 55 grains of FFg to put holes in paper and clang a gong.  For hunting I would beef up the load a bit for increased energy. 

One thing I do know...a bag full of balls to get you through a trail walk makes the bag Darn heavy.  Each station makes you feel closer ot reaching the end of hte trail.  That and the 16 is just darn fun.

Offline Chris in Washington

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #13 on: October 03, 2008, 07:29:21 AM »
Well good evening Chip.. I was wonder if you were going to chime in on this.  I had talked to you earlier this summer about your smooth rifle but couldn't remember what you had worked out.   Maybe sometime the fall/winter you, Dave, and I should do the monthly club shot with the 16's  ;)
Chris Statz

Offline David Rase

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2008, 06:32:23 PM »



Dave...   I appreciate the offer to use your new mold...
I'll have to give you a call next week to work things out.  Thanks

Chris
Chris,  I am not quite that nice a guy to loan you my new unused mold, but my wife will cast up a few balls for you to try.
The Tulle is coming along fine.   Lock is in, stock is shaped, ram rod made, etc.  I have a hand forged 3 piece guard made and brazed together but decided to forge it out of one piece so I still need the trigger guard.  That is the last piece.  Hopefully I will get it pounded out next week. 
I am focusing on getting my new shop wired.  Have the breaker panel in, 220 ran for the welder, lathe and heat treat furnace and the wall outlets ran.  Need to do the indoor and entry lights, get it inspected continue moving in.  I do have a refrigerator full of beer already hooked up. ;D ;D
Dave

Offline Chris in Washington

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #15 on: October 04, 2008, 10:22:27 PM »
Dave.... that would make me a lot more comfortable... I just looked up the mold on NEC web site... Would hate to have something happen to it before you got a chance to use it.   I'll find a little something for your wife's time and trouble.

Chris
Chris Statz

Offline ChipK

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Re: 16 gauge starting loads
« Reply #16 on: October 05, 2008, 06:47:59 AM »
Well good evening Chip.. I was wonder if you were going to chime in on this.  I had talked to you earlier this summer about your smooth rifle but couldn't remember what you had worked out.   Maybe sometime the fall/winter you, Dave, and I should do the monthly club shot with the 16's  ;)

HI Chris,
Perhaps next months shoot at Bremerton or Paul Bunyan in Nov.  Let me know and I will try to be sure ot bring the smooth rifle.