Author Topic: Need advice on black powder measurements  (Read 1707 times)

Offline mountainman

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Need advice on black powder measurements
« on: October 03, 2019, 08:48:13 PM »


I have 2 powder measurements, can't remember where I got them from, but I noticed that when I measure and compare both they don't hold out the same time, the wider one comes up with with more powder, about 5 grains more to what I think it should be.
Question is which is the right one? The one has numbers, and the other one doesn't, the one with numbers do I read the numbers below the line or above the line, and can anybody tell me what the other one without numbers mean?



Offline Tilefish

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2019, 09:08:47 PM »
The one on the left looks like the old T/C measure I have one it starts at 50grains and each click is ten grain increments.I have also noticed it holds a little more powder than most other measures on the same grain charge.


Hope this helps.
Chad

Offline mountainman

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2019, 09:20:32 PM »
Thanks for that information on the wide one. The one with numbers looks like it may be as low as 40 grains, on which side of the line I'm not sure?

Offline Daryl

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2019, 09:59:50 PM »
Totally closed, is 40gr. The first visible line is 50, etc.

The only way to know which is correct, is to weigh the powder charges thrown by both.

Lee Valley tools has an inexpensive digital scale for way under $20.00. It weighs in grains,
 ounces, grams - etc. I keep one in my shooting box - not sure why, now that I think about it.

Different powder makes as well as different granulations 'throw" different weights from the same measure.
Use the adjustments to change loads until you find a load that works best for you, THEN make a single non-
adjustable measure to 'throw" that amount. No scale needed.
I make powder measures out of brass tubing from model airplane/car stores as well as from ctg. cases I pick up at the range.
I drill out the flash hole for a screw-eye, then turn the end off to a rounded shape on the lathe. An electric drill held in a bench
vise will also work, but 1/2" drill will be needed for most brass that will throw over 25gr. 3F.
With the tubing, which has a .015" wall and successive sizing that each larger size just slide fits into the next size.  for those, I make
a soft-wood plug, glue it in with CA and drill a hole across for a string. Several of these measures are like that. I have one that throws
35gr. and it's only 5/16"" in diameter(bottom right), along with several throwing from 62gr. 3F to 165gr. 2F. top row left and top row right.




« Last Edit: October 03, 2019, 10:08:44 PM by Daryl »
Daryl

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Offline horsetrader

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2019, 05:53:22 AM »
The measure on the right is set on 80 grains in the picture. The number below the line is what you would read for that line.
.
Ed Radzinski

Offline Daryl

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2019, 06:15:53 AM »
Yes - you are right - I have a similar measure, had to check it - sorry for my error. The TC measure is also set on 80gr.
In the range of 80gr., my measure like the one on the right, is out about 1/3rd spacing with the lot of GOEX I am using right now.
A change in lot #'s may or may not change that- hard to say.
Daryl

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Offline mountainman

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #6 on: October 04, 2019, 06:32:26 AM »
So the powder measurement on the right, if it was completely closed in, should be at 30 grains then?

Offline Daryl

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2019, 06:38:52 AM »
Depends on the powder measure, but that sounds about right - for that measure.
Mine, if closed, holds ZERO and starts first line at 20gr. & goes up to 120gr.
Daryl

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Offline OldMtnMan

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #8 on: October 04, 2019, 02:22:10 PM »
It's really not that important. As long as you use the same measure all the time and develope a load your gun likes with the same measure, your groups will be good.
Pete

Offline Mike Brooks

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #9 on: October 04, 2019, 02:24:42 PM »
It's really not that important. As long as you use the same measure all the time and develope a load your gun likes with the same measure, your groups will be good.
There's your answer.
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Offline B.Barker

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #10 on: October 05, 2019, 04:24:25 AM »
I make adjustable powder measures and use a commercial one to set the 10 grain increments. What I have found out is the same measure will throw different amounts of powder depending on how you pour the powder into the measure. The powder will settle a bit differently each time you pour it in. The thing about black powder is it doesn't have to be precise for most guns. If your rifle is a .54 that likes to shoot 110 grs if your charge is 5 grs. either side of that it won't make a big enough difference to notice.

Offline OldMtnMan

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #11 on: October 05, 2019, 03:39:06 PM »
I make adjustable powder measures and use a commercial one to set the 10 grain increments. What I have found out is the same measure will throw different amounts of powder depending on how you pour the powder into the measure. The powder will settle a bit differently each time you pour it in. The thing about black powder is it doesn't have to be precise for most guns. If your rifle is a .54 that likes to shoot 110 grs if your charge is 5 grs. either side of that it won't make a big enough difference to notice.


After you pour the powder in the measure if you flick your finger against the measure the powder will settle in more. Doing this will help the powder load be more consistent.
Pete

Offline hanshi

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #12 on: October 05, 2019, 09:42:27 PM »

[/quote]
After you pour the powder in the measure if you flick your finger against the measure the powder will settle in more. Doing this will help the powder load be more consistent.
[/quote]


It really does.  I have several adjustable measures and each one seems to have its own personality for sure.  I use fixed measures both in the field and usually at the range.  I make my own for use in the bush.  Once I find a load (adjustable measure) I weigh it.  Then I work on a measure until it averages that weight of powder.
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Offline mountainman

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #13 on: October 10, 2019, 05:26:55 AM »


I ended up making a powder measurement out of a 30-06 cartridge that I cut down to about 25 grains.
I might end up buying one of those small scales from Midway.
Thanks all for your help.

Offline D. Taylor Sapergia

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #14 on: October 11, 2019, 02:32:15 AM »
The powder measure does two important things:  first, it throws the same charge, pretty well, every time.  That is the key to accuracy, not how much the powder weighs.  The only use knowing the weight of the charge is so that we can communicate with others.  Secondly, it keeps you from loading directly from the horn/flask/can into the muzzle of your rifle.
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Offline Bob McBride

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #15 on: October 11, 2019, 03:15:01 AM »

Quote
After you pour the powder in the measure if you flick your finger against the measure the powder will settle in more. Doing this will help the powder load be more consistent.


It really does.  I have several adjustable measures and each one seems to have its own personality for sure.  I use fixed measures both in the field and usually at the range.  I make my own for use in the bush.  Once I find a load (adjustable measure) I weigh it.  Then I work on a measure until it averages that weight of powder.

 I do the same except I skip the weighing part. I use sand or sugar, or whatever I have to get a volume from the adjustable measure and translate that to the one I make....
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Offline mushka

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #16 on: October 11, 2019, 09:54:29 PM »
I make my powder measures from a one inch dowel.  I cut the dowel to the length I want, then drill down into it a ways.  I then pour powder into it and dump it on a balance scale.  I keep drilling and measuring til I get a measure to pour within plus or minus one or so grains of the weight I want.  Time comsuming but is a pleasurable task for me.  I have the tools to cut, drill, and shape the  measures.  Seems to work for me fairly well.  I've made measures from 12 grns up to 85 grns.  I Put the expected measured weight on each measure so that I know what I am putting in.
I'm not really anal about the exact weight of the powder charge, grain or two off seems to make no difference in my experience where the ball hits.

Offline Dave R

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #17 on: October 15, 2019, 04:36:17 AM »
Back many years ago I was told that black powder was measured in volume not weight?? Please comment. :)

Offline Daryl

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #18 on: October 15, 2019, 04:54:24 AM »
Whenever you pour powder from the horn (or can) into a measure, then from the measure into the bore, you are "throwing" a stricken volume of powder,
that incidentally has a weight.

The weight is immaterial, as long as that measure holds the amount of powder that shoots well enough for you. Lose that measure and you are lost for knowing what it threw.

I weigh what the stricken measure 'throws' so that I can make other measures that THROW that same volume. Can be done without knowing the weight but knowing the weight
 makes it easier to duplicate what that measure 'throws'.
Daryl

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Offline galudwig

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #19 on: October 16, 2019, 02:40:35 AM »
Whenever you pour powder from the horn (or can) into a measure, then from the measure into the bore, you are "throwing" a stricken volume of powder,
that incidentally has a weight.

The weight is immaterial, as long as that measure holds the amount of powder that shoots well enough for you. Lose that measure and you are lost for knowing what it threw.

I weigh what the stricken measure 'throws' so that I can make other measures that THROW that same volume. Can be done without knowing the weight but knowing the weight
 makes it easier to duplicate what that measure 'throws'.

That's probably the clearest and most concise explanation regarding weight and volume that I've ever seen. Thanks for that!  8)
galudwig

Offline Notchy Bob

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #20 on: October 16, 2019, 04:47:06 AM »
Back many years ago I was told that black powder was measured in volume not weight?? Please comment. :)

I believe most of the volumetric black powder measures are calibrated according to the weight, in grains, of water.  I haven't tested that, but I have compared volume to weight of black powder, measuring charges of FFg and FFFg with adjustable measures, powder flask spouts, and a precision reloading scale.  I found that the charge, in grains, was consistently less on the scale than was indicated on the volumetric measure, and equal volumes of FFFg were slightly heavier than FFg.

The actual difference between a weighed charge and a volumetric charge of the same nominal grain weight was not insignificant, and obviously the larger the charge, the greater the difference.  I was a N-SSA member for a while.  When I first joined, I was advised to try loads of 35 to 40 grains in my .58 rifle musket.  I commented that it seemed like a very light charge, but was then informed that this was by weight, not volume. 

With very light, squirrel rifle loads, the weight/volume difference might just be a few grains.  However, with very large powder charges, I think it is safest to assume recommended loads are based on volume.  Thoughtful mentors and gun writers will tell you if the loads they recommend are by weight or volume.

Best regards,

Notchy Bob
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Offline hudson

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #21 on: October 16, 2019, 04:43:54 PM »
As I recall in his book Roberts mentioned builders often supplied measures made of a brass or tin tube with a cork tightly pressed in the base.

Offline Mike_StL

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #22 on: October 24, 2019, 08:46:13 PM »
I have a good selection of black powder measures.  While the volume setting is generally pretty close to the weight as measured on a balance scale of GOEX 2fg.  There are subtle differences between the measures, and a volume of 3fg weighs slightly more than the same volume of 2fg.  Most measures I find are within a grain or two when comparing the setting to a weight of black powder.  The substitutes will weigh less, but perform to that volume of black powder.

Offline Daryl

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #23 on: October 24, 2019, 10:05:38 PM »
Further to the consistency problem, the smaller the inside diameter of the measure, the more consistent the "throws" will be, charge to charge.

I've found through experimentation, that a measure that is 3/8" (.375") or close to that inside diameter, will give much closer shot to shot throws, than
 will a measure has a larger diameter inside.

The worse powder measures for throwing consistency, are the larger inside diameter and tapered hole measures made from horn as well as critter leg bones.
Daryl

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Offline hanshi

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Re: Need advice on black powder measurements
« Reply #24 on: October 24, 2019, 11:02:48 PM »
In my decades of bp shooting I've come to the conclusion that black powder is very forgiving as to charge size and generally pretty accurate within a wide range.  In fact I've only found (so far) one gun/load that had a major difference with just a small increase of powder.  In this particular rifle going from 35 grains to 40 grains upped the velocity by nearly 250 fps.  Hadn't seen that before.  Also at 40 grains there was only a tiny ES.
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