Author Topic: First good shooting session with my Isaac Haines build (some questions too)  (Read 912 times)

Offline Justin

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I built this rifle 2 winters ago but had yet to really put together a decent shooting string. Built from a Jim Chambers Isaac Haines set (I didn't get the nose cap in the picture...):



I'm shooting a 0.530" ball with Eastern Maine 0.020 premium lubed patches (yeah, don't laugh). 65 grains of Goex FFFg in the barrel and a pinch or two of FFFFg in the pan.

This is at 50 yards shooting off bags:

I think this is actually 4 shots unless my 4th was super wild and way off the paper and backing cardboard:




Grouping confirmed by this point -- added the flyer, not sure what happened there:


Adjusted my windage very slightly here:




Adjusted windage very slightly again:




Seemed to be fairly well zeroed for windage by the time I was done (some AK-47 shooters showed up next to me which always ruins the fun):



Anyway, I'm getting pretty low on my Goex powder so after hearing good things about Swiss powder, I ordered a bunch of that.

Do you folks think I should start with 65 grains of Swiss or lower it? I've heard you need a bit less than compared to Goex / other brands.
Does this seem like pretty decent accuracy for 50 yards off a bag or should I keep experimenting with different grain loads?
I didn't collect any of my shot patches to inspect them so I need to do that next time (hopefully this weekend). I know when I was shooting 0.010" patches, they were burned pretty good and with this improved consistency (for me anyway), I'm thinking these patches are probably working pretty decent.

What powder, ball, patch, etc. combos do folks find good accuracy with on their setups? This is a Rice barrel, FWIW and I'm sure they're all slightly different but thought I'd ask...

Offline snapper

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Kinda depends on what you are going to do with the rifle.

For hunting I like a little more then 65 grains.   I would not go chasing moose or bear with a light load.

I have one .54 that I just shoot targets with for fun.  I shoot 65 grains swiss in that.   It is a very light English Sporting rifle and the recoil bothers me to target shoot it will a large load.

Get the powder and see what the rifle likes and what you plan on doing with it.

Fleener

My taste are simple:  I am easily satisfied with the best.  Winston Churchill

Offline Justin

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Kinda depends on what you are going to do with the rifle.

Oops. Yeah... I intend to hunt deer with it (midwest whitetails). I'd like to go after pronghorn someday with it but not too worried about that now.

Offline snapper

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65 grains will certainly work for deer, no problem.

I have not hunted with a load that light.  All of my deer the past several years I use 86 grains of 2f swiss.

fleener
My taste are simple:  I am easily satisfied with the best.  Winston Churchill

Offline Justin

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I have not hunted with a load that light.  All of my deer the past several years I use 86 grains of 2f swiss.

Would 3F swiss be comparable to that or would I need to go lighter on 3F to match that same energy of 2F?

Offline snapper

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I have never taken equal weights of powder of different grains and run them over the chronograph. 

I dont think I have ever used my chronograph on anything other then my bullet rifles, and an arrow or two.

Fleener
My taste are simple:  I am easily satisfied with the best.  Winston Churchill

Offline recurve

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Look up some of "Herb" testing/ shooting he has posted many different powders compared to each other  by weight and for several calibers. Great info and fun reads (all with target photos!)

Offline Brokennock

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65 grains of goex seems light, so, maybe start there with the swiss. I wouldn't start with less. I'm wondering if a little more velocity will tighten your group and maybe bring windage back in line.

Offline snapper

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every time I think of a light charge for hunting I cant help but think of the good ole 45-70 that killed millions of bison, with a bullet that is much heaver  then a round ball.

Fleener
My taste are simple:  I am easily satisfied with the best.  Winston Churchill

Offline Justin

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Did a little experimenting yesterday at the range. Also made the switch to Swiss FFFg in the barrel.

Started with 65 grains:


Then 70:


Then 75, looks like a winner. I was frankly surprised by the drastic improvement:


Found some patches also. Little bit of burn through but with this grouping I don't think I'm going to change anything.


Offline alacran

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Don't stop now.  Shoot more groups and raise the powder charge in 5 grain increments until you see the groups start to open up again. By all means don't be complacent with your patching. What are you using for patch lube.  Don't be afraid to try .535 balls.
"From one thing know 10,,000 things" Miyamoto Musashi

Offline Justin

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Don't stop now.  Shoot more groups and raise the powder charge in 5 grain increments until you see the groups start to open up again. By all means don't be complacent with your patching. What are you using for patch lube.  Don't be afraid to try .535 balls.

I use 0.020" Premium Lubed Patches from Eastern Maine Shooting Supply. They come pre-lubricated with their own lubricant:
https://www.emshootingsupplies.com/store/p622/ORIGINAL_SCENT_PREMIUM_LUBE%C2%AE_PASTE.html

Offline alacran

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I checked out the link you posted for eastern Maine Shooters supply. Doesn't really tell you what is in their lube, or what type of weave their patches are made from. I for one have found that pre-lubed pre-cut purchased patches are not only expensive, but seldom meet my expectations.
What I'm getting at is try different stuff. Daryl is fond of Denim, I have a preference for pocket drill.
Your 75grain is starting to show promise. but shooting of the bench I think you could do better.
"From one thing know 10,,000 things" Miyamoto Musashi

Offline Justin

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I checked out the link you posted for eastern Maine Shooters supply. Doesn't really tell you what is in their lube, or what type of weave their patches are made from. I for one have found that pre-lubed pre-cut purchased patches are not only expensive, but seldom meet my expectations.
What I'm getting at is try different stuff. Daryl is fond of Denim, I have a preference for pocket drill.
Your 75grain is starting to show promise. but shooting of the bench I think you could do better.

Yeah, my tolerance for hassle is low and time limited so I go for the convenience options. Otherwise, I'd probably find myself single in a hurry :D

Offline RichG

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A .530 ball and .020 patch isn't a tight load. I'm not surprised adding powder tightened group. I would keep going and see where the groups open up or patches blow out. Your patches look like the crown or lands might be cutting them a little. I'm currently using a .525 ball .020 patch with mink oil and it takes 90 grs of Goex O.E. to group good. You have to have enough pressure to get the ball to expand. You could try a .535 ball or thicker patch as mentioned and it might work with a lighter load if that's what your looking for.

Offline Darkhorse

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I'm testing some Eastern Maine shooting supplies .015 patching. I wanted a thinner patch for easier loading but with a denser weave and more integrity than what I had been able to find. This material is denser, hasn't torn or burned through yet and shoots accurate. I bought mine without the lube option. So far I've only tested it in my .40 caliber, but I will be putting it through good testing in my .54 in a few days.

The lightest load I've killed deer with in a .54 was 70 grains of 3fg, I shot a 8 point buck at 60 yards and a doe at 25, both shots were complete pass throughs. But this year I'll be shooting 80 grains of GO 3fg due to the large hogs on my hunting property and to flatten tragectory a little. This has been my favorite load for many years.
American horses of Arabian descent.