Author Topic: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle  (Read 7733 times)

Offline Black River Smith

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #100 on: February 16, 2021, 07:21:07 PM »
KenH,

Looks like you did a great job compared to your very first picture.  Nice job bring back a wonderful old rifle.  Something to be proud of and it was free, if I remember correctly.

Now, enjoy loading and shooting it.  Find correct, old reloading tools and mold, then you have a real display / talking piece.
Black River Smith

Offline dusty texian

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #101 on: February 17, 2021, 02:54:57 PM »
I'll be sure to post some on shooting once it warms up some - it's COLD down here these days.  Heck, we got below freezing last night.  At least it warmed up to low 40's today, but that's still too cold for shooting.  I had to bring some potted plants in.  I did NOT move South of I-10 to be cold - I like warm weather!
Not much shooting here either due to weather conditions . May try and do some casting in a day or so plenty cool enough for that . ,,,,,DT

Offline KenH

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #102 on: February 26, 2021, 12:49:07 PM »
I wasn't sure if this should be posted in the 40-60 loading data thread, or here with the project rifle.  Since it's more what "this" rifle is doing and certainly not loads to use I decided to post here.  It's pretty long, and I would like any comments to my questions at the end.

First a photo of 10"X10" sq target shot at 25 yds with a "prop" rather than an actual "shooting rest".  All bullets are cast from the Lee 410-210-SWC mold and are powder coated and sized to .408" and the bore has been slugged to .4065" diameter.  Since this is an original barrel and best I can tell it's a 40:1 twist rate:


The two holes labeled "1" are with 50 grains of GOEX Fg black powder.  There was a 3rd shot but it was off the paper, didn't find it anyway. Below is the chrono info.



The holes labeled "2" are with 40 grains of FFFg, and the chrono info for them.  Note the #2 in upper left corner and the #2 at the extreme right of paper.  Both of those bullets have a yaw shown by the mark on one side of hole and hole not perfectly round.  This tells me the bullets were not stabilized.



Next are 3 shots with 16.0 grains of Lil'Gun.  No chrono info for these 3 shots today, but they normally are in the 1425 fps range.  The 3 shot group is 1" horizontal and 1.5" vertical.  That is not good at all for 25 yds.   BUT - it seems to be about what I can do these days with this prop I'm using.  I shot 10 shots with a 10X scope from pellet gun that with good rest 10 shots at 50 yds covered with a quarter (<1" group).  The same rifle shooting same conditions as 1876 rifle gives me over a 1" group at 25 yds.  Boy can I see my wobble thru the 10X scope.  Based on this I feel the 1876 with 16.0 grains of Lil'Gun is shooting ok, it's me that's terrible.

Based on the above tests I'm thinking the Lee 410-210-TL SWC bullet I'm using requires >1400 fps for good stabilization.  Perhaps if I could get the black powder up to 1400 fps it would shoot better?   Maybe see if I can get 50 grains of FFFg in the case with compression.   I'll also be trying 17.0 grains of Lil'Gun that should give almost 1550 fps and see what that does?

Anyway, this did get long and I'd be very interested in your comments on the bullet stabilization idea.  With a 40:1 twist what fps does it require to stabilize a 210 grain bullet?
 

Offline greyhawk

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #103 on: February 26, 2021, 04:02:56 PM »
I wasn't sure if this should be posted in the 40-60 loading data thread, or here with the project rifle.  Since it's more what "this" rifle is doing and certainly not loads to use I decided to post here.  It's pretty long, and I would like any comments to my questions at the end.

First a photo of 10"X10" sq target shot at 25 yds with a "prop" rather than an actual "shooting rest".  All bullets are cast from the Lee 410-210-SWC mold and are powder coated and sized to .408" and the bore has been slugged to .4065" diameter.  Since this is an original barrel and best I can tell it's a 40:1 twist rate:


The two holes labeled "1" are with 50 grains of GOEX Fg black powder.  There was a 3rd shot but it was off the paper, didn't find it anyway. Below is the chrono info.



The holes labeled "2" are with 40 grains of FFFg, and the chrono info for them.  Note the #2 in upper left corner and the #2 at the extreme right of paper.  Both of those bullets have a yaw shown by the mark on one side of hole and hole not perfectly round.  This tells me the bullets were not stabilized.



Next are 3 shots with 16.0 grains of Lil'Gun.  No chrono info for these 3 shots today, but they normally are in the 1425 fps range.  The 3 shot group is 1" horizontal and 1.5" vertical.  That is not good at all for 25 yds.   BUT - it seems to be about what I can do these days with this prop I'm using.  I shot 10 shots with a 10X scope from pellet gun that with good rest 10 shots at 50 yds covered with a quarter (<1" group).  The same rifle shooting same conditions as 1876 rifle gives me over a 1" group at 25 yds.  Boy can I see my wobble thru the 10X scope.  Based on this I feel the 1876 with 16.0 grains of Lil'Gun is shooting ok, it's me that's terrible.

Based on the above tests I'm thinking the Lee 410-210-TL SWC bullet I'm using requires >1400 fps for good stabilization.  Perhaps if I could get the black powder up to 1400 fps it would shoot better?   Maybe see if I can get 50 grains of FFFg in the case with compression.   I'll also be trying 17.0 grains of Lil'Gun that should give almost 1550 fps and see what that does?

Anyway, this did get long and I'd be very interested in your comments on the bullet stabilization idea.  With a 40:1 twist what fps does it require to stabilize a 210 grain bullet?

Ken
I think you might be right about lack of velocity but a couple other suggestions here too (I have ran into stability problems a couple times and more velocity or less boolit weight is the best first step to sort it - not always but most times works) 

for your Black loads get rid of the powder coat - make some lube 50/50 beeswax and neatsfoot oil or olive oil or jojoba or ----- some kind of natural oil . 

if you are using a lube cookie ? leave that out - it takes up powder space. 

try a plastic overpowder wad, tight to the bore, I use HDPE that I cut from 10 litre water jugs (all the xpurts recommend LDPE I couldnt find it and the other stuff is everywhere and works for me - gun is a new uberti 45/75 - groups improved quite a bit using it). 

Blow tube every shot - maybe helps - (can do too much of that too) wont help with stability but if that old barrel is fouling up will help that -try it. 
Dusty will give you a better lead on this than me and he will be along soon I bet. 

Offline KenH

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #104 on: February 26, 2021, 04:43:27 PM »
Thanks for comments and suggestions. The lubed felt wad I used was soaked in a heated beeswax lube I made a couple yr ago - don't remember exact, but pretty sure it's a 50/50 mix of beeswax and lanolin (or olive oil).  Heated to a liquid and soaked felt cookie to make the lubed wad.  Not sure what the deal is, but I really need to tighten up the spread on the velocity.  That's about the worse I've had with black powder.  In the past BP always gave me a much smaller spread than I normally got with smokeless powder.

The problem with the Lee 410-210-SWC is it's a tumble lube type bullet with those tiny lube grooves rather than the nice big lube grooves to hold lots of BP lube.

On the LDPE cookie, how thick is the plastic on a 10 liter water jug?  About all I've got around here is 1/2 gallon milk jugs. I've got a set of those cheap harbor freight punches that work good on the felt.

Wife's calling - gotta run.  (I guess that shows who's boss around here:)

Thanks again,

Ken H>


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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #105 on: Today at 07:06:25 AM »

Offline Black River Smith

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #105 on: February 26, 2021, 10:39:48 PM »
I will try and give you a few suggestions that I see from your load and loading technique.

1st thing noticed - The Lee bullet you are using, while correct in 'diameter and weight' is a 'pistol bullet' design and too large a diameter, IMO.  The correct bullet would be the Lyman #403168(editted - it is the old Ideal standard bullet for the 40/60 cartridge).  The 0.403 bullet with BP will expand to the 0.406 bore.  It will have larger grease grooves and will most likely be longer in length to stabilize in the rifle.  Tap on the link, then scroll down to 403168 bullet - http://ps-2.kev009.com/ohland/Cast_Bullet/Ideal-Lyman_Molds/Ideal-Lyman_Mold_Descriptions.html#40_caliber_403     This bullet design is still offered by Lyman today.

2nd thing - As Greyhawk stated No powder coating with BP.  No smokeless types of lubing with BP.

3rd thing - No felt wads in a BP cartridge.  It is not a true grease cookie.  Grease cookies are normally like a 3/16" thick semi-hard lube plug.  Not the same approach as in a percussion pistol.

4th thing - IMO GOEX does not have to be compressed to 1/4" (0.25).  My loadings are only 1/16" (to tops 1/8 rarely) compression.

5th thing - The 40/60 was a 60 grain cartridge and still should be close, not only 40 - 50 grains.  I do not own a 40/60 but a 45/60.  In a modified 45/70 case cut to 45/60 dimensions, I measured 61 grains of RS Pyrodex.  GOEX 1F is less.  That is Powder and Bullet with a 1/16 compression.  I would only use 1F or 2F in the cartridges.  (I use a different smokeless powder in mine).  I will have to recheck the GOEX 1F measurements.

6th thing - These older firearms where designed around a different lead alloy than what we most often use.  Much Softer.  The Lyman 39th Ed suggests a 16/1 (Lead to Tin) alloy be used for the Winchester 210 grain - 40/60 bullet.

While I shot BP strictly in all my calibers for 20yrs, I now have to shoot indoors using only smokeless.  NO outdoor ranges close by.

Hopefully Dusty and others with true 40/60 rifles will come in, to give you their loading techniques and suggestions.

Hope this helps, plus there are several books about BP reloading techniques.  Also, Lyman's 49th Ed has a specific 1876 section, for us.
Black River Smith

Offline greyhawk

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #106 on: February 26, 2021, 11:28:53 PM »
Thanks for comments and suggestions. The lubed felt wad I used was soaked in a heated beeswax lube I made a couple yr ago - don't remember exact, but pretty sure it's a 50/50 mix of beeswax and lanolin (or olive oil).  Heated to a liquid and soaked felt cookie to make the lubed wad.  Not sure what the deal is, but I really need to tighten up the spread on the velocity.  That's about the worse I've had with black powder.  In the past BP always gave me a much smaller spread than I normally got with smokeless powder.

The problem with the Lee 410-210-SWC is it's a tumble lube type bullet with those tiny lube grooves rather than the nice big lube grooves to hold lots of BP lube.

On the LDPE cookie, how thick is the plastic on a 10 liter water jug?  About all I've got around here is 1/2 gallon milk jugs. I've got a set of those cheap harbor freight punches that work good on the felt.

The water jug will give you about 45 thou but note they are Hdpe not Ldpe -------the HDPE seems to work fine, I was a bit bothered about using it when everybody was using the L stuff - but a recent note from one of the more experienced shooters who was using it in one rifle with better result put my mind at rest . 

Lee makes a 410-195 with two decent lube grooves and a big crimp groove but they out of stock at the moment - better lube carrying and also shorter by 15 grains - might do the trick if you can get hold of one - If you pan lube those boolits you have and cookie cutter them with an oversize tube (say 415 - 420) you might get enough lube in there to do something ? I just reckon the modern lubes are antagonistic to black powder - not just they dont work - it seems they work against us .

Offline dusty texian

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #107 on: February 27, 2021, 10:47:10 AM »
The 40-60 WCF load that works good in all of my 40-60's is a  .406 Dia. bullet as cast from Winchester mold marked as such , this bullet weigh's @ 210 Gr. is .710 in length with Two Lube Grooves  with a  50-50 mix of wheel weights and soft lead . Lube is 50-50 Deer tallow and Bees wax , lubed by hand . A charge of 55 Gr. by weight  Swiss ffg Powder  poured from a few inch's above the funnel  into a Jamison  case . This charge fills the case to about 1/8 " below case neck top . The cartridge is lit by a Winchester or CCI STD . LGR primer . No wad .  This load is a compression load of about .250 " , I have used the compression die and also just seated the bullet and let the bullet compress the powder . I know that supposed to be a No No but I cant see much difference at the range I shoot in accuracy .  Most times I seat all this together in a Winchester Tong Tool . This old Tong Tool will compress the bullet and charge plus roll crimp all in one stroke .  Some times I use the compression die then use a 40-60wcf Lee Die set to assemble the cartridge but have found very little difference doing this and find the Winchester Tong Toll more to my liking . From what I see in your loading Bp. I would change to a bullet closer to bore size ( it will bump up )   with lube grooves and also increase  the charge of Bp.  The 40-60 is an Express Cartridge that's why the slow ROT of 1 turn in 40 " . It relies on a burst of speed to work as designed . More powder is your friend in this case Pun Intended .,,,DT

Offline KenH

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #108 on: February 27, 2021, 04:17:49 PM »
Thanks for the comments - ya'll have given me plenty to think about.  I  just did some checking and I get the following from a level full Jamison 40-60 brass:
GOEX Fg = 54.5 grains
GOEX FFg = 49.6 grains
GOEX FFFg = 53.3 grains

Those are weighted on a digital scale.  Tapping case on bench lowers the powder to the point a bullet is easy seated, but still will give about 1/4" compression (depending on bullet seating depth) to the powder.  Perhaps tapping on case as it's being filled, then tapping some more might allow a full 55 grains of FFg.  I could easy get 55 grains of FFFg, and that would get close to the desired 1400+ fps velocity.

Yes, I do tend to forget about the "bump up" effect of BP due to the higher pressure peak with BP than a typical smokeless power might be.  It seems like a hollow base bullet would be ideal for BP use as it seems the hollow base would assist in the bullet bumping up to fill the bore 'n riflings.  I keep forgetting BP is a whole different ball game than the smokeless I'm so accustomed to shooting.

Thank ya'll again for all the help, and DT - thanks for posting photos of your reloading tools.  That would be so nice to have original tools for reloading.

Ken H>

Offline dusty texian

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #109 on: February 28, 2021, 08:02:28 AM »
KenH I would guess that ffg Swiss   and  fffg Goex  are closer in density . Not to start a powder brand war , but the Swiss has worked better in my  cartridge rifles than Goex , Schuetzen , and Graft & Son. Goex is all I use in my muzzleloaders with excellent results .  My next purchase of Bp. will include some Old E Goex  have heard nothing but good about it . I mention using a High Quality Bp. because what I have seen is that  the 40-60 wcf fouls out faster than the other 76 cartridges . I think it goes back to the 40-60 wcf being a high powder to bullet ratio coupled with the very shallow rifling . If you think about it the 40-60 wcf is about the same as a 38-40 wcf with almost double the powder .  ,,,,DT

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #110 on: Today at 07:06:25 AM »

Offline KenH

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #110 on: February 28, 2021, 10:11:18 AM »
I just realized something - bet I should do a quick wipe down the barrel between shots if I want best accuracy with BP shooting?  As I've mentioned before I've never really shot much cartridge BP, some in muzzle loaders many years ago - thinking back I guess it was 50 yrs ago.  It was when I was in my 20s, and here I am in my 70s, that's close to 50 yrs.  WOW - how time flies when you're having fun :)

I guess I use GOEX powder - not much choice around here that I've found.  With that I suspect the FFFg should be ok, and get most velocity which it seems is needed in this 40-60 rifle, is this due to the slow twist?

Thanks again for all the comments and suggestions.

Offline Black River Smith

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #111 on: February 28, 2021, 05:06:50 PM »
 Deleted.
Black River Smith

Offline KenH

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #112 on: February 28, 2021, 05:28:28 PM »
You are very correct in that method of measuring BP is by volume.  That's how I've always measured BP was by a volume measuring device.  BUT - it was my thinking that by measuring by weight, each 50 grain load would be exactly the same. 

If measuring by volume, the weight will vary by a few tenths of a grain (perhaps more?).  When I say "50 grain of FFFg", I'm not at all saying it would be the same as your 50 grain volume measure of FFFg. 

Would your scale weight of 50 grains of GOEX FFFg BP not be close to my 50 grains? 

As I've said so many times, I am NOT an expert at all in BP shooting, especially with cartridges and am looking to learn.

Ken H>


Offline Black River Smith

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #113 on: February 28, 2021, 06:17:29 PM »
Made a fatal error in posting my last post.  I have deleted the contents.
Black River Smith

Offline greyhawk

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #114 on: February 28, 2021, 09:26:58 PM »
You are very correct in that method of measuring BP is by volume.  That's how I've always measured BP was by a volume measuring device.  BUT - it was my thinking that by measuring by weight, each 50 grain load would be exactly the same. 

If measuring by volume, the weight will vary by a few tenths of a grain (perhaps more?).  When I say "50 grain of FFFg", I'm not at all saying it would be the same as your 50 grain volume measure of FFFg. 

Would your scale weight of 50 grains of GOEX FFFg BP not be close to my 50 grains? 

As I've said so many times, I am NOT an expert at all in BP shooting, especially with cartridges and am looking to learn.

Ken H>

Even loading smokeless most of us end up doing it by volume (powder throwers) - BUT - anytime I quote a load it is scale weight - grains is weight - marks on a volume measure is just that, a mark on a container - might or might not equal the weight that the number represents . There is some wiggle room Swiss is denser than Wano, Wano is denser than Goex, Goex is denser than homemade corned is denser than screened .........................50 grains is 50 grains is 50 grains - on a scale !! ---none of which matters so long as we are clear what we are talking about - you were. I would suggest you calibrate your measure using a scale if you can, including how many taps on the bench you use or whatever else you do to to settle the charge evenly. Not nit picking here  - waaaal dont mean to be...........
This has been a fun project for a lot of us - it wont be long and you will be blowin bean cans off a post at 100yards with that old girl! 

Offline dusty texian

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #115 on: March 01, 2021, 05:28:18 AM »
The Hawk rang a bell for me this morning , He's right Consistency ! Once I find an amount of powder ( However you do it ) that fill's the case to a level that leaves the right amount of room after compression for bullet seating depth with the OAL that I want . Or to be more correct ( That the rifle wants ) . I feel how the powder goes into the case is important . Consistency comes into play again . Most times I pour the powder a few inch's above the funnel directly from the weighing pan into the funnel on case neck with the same amount of wiggles in my wrist while I watch the powder swirl around in the funnel on its way home . I don't count the wiggles just can tell that's the same as always , then the filled case gets two taps on the bench before being set in the loading block .  The point is , when I find a load that works  well  , I try and duplicate the load and the process of how it was assembled . We may all do some things a bit different to get to the same place , but one thing we must all do for good results is Be Consistent in how we get there .                                                                     Sorry Strong Coffee this morning ,,,DT

Offline KenH

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #116 on: March 01, 2021, 03:28:40 PM »
DT 'n GreyHawk both - thank ya'll for comments.  I do agree being consistent is the real key to accurate and reproducible loads for sure.  I have used Lee powder scoops in the past and it's amazing how accurate they will throw a powder charge, but it does take being VERY consistent with exactly how to dip, etc to get close to the same.  Now I do have a question here, and please don't take I'm trying to argue with ya'll.  I KNOW I don't know enough to argue {g}

Let's take a case that holds 50cc of volume by water measurement.   If I fill that case level full using GOEX FFFg BP  thru a funnel and trying to be very careful so it's as close as possible to the same all the time.  That should give me a good consistent load.  Now, just for grins let's weight that and find it holds 50 grains by weight on a good scale.  Yea, I know it might not be 50 grains, but that keeps it simple.

Let's say I get a different batch of GOEX FFFg BP and I fill that same case level full using exactly the same method.  It's still got the same 50cc by volume as the first batch, but when I weight on same scale I find it's is more dense giving a weight of 52 grains. 

Will that loaded bullet with 50 cc by volume (but 52 grains by weight) shoot the same fps and pressure as the first batch of of GOEX FFFg BP with 50 grains - remember, they're still the same volume.

As I said, I don't claim to be an expert by any means on BP - or smokeless for that matter.  I'm just looking for guidance, and sometimes I can be slow on the uptake/understanding part so please bear with me.

Ken >

Offline greyhawk

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #117 on: March 01, 2021, 08:09:43 PM »
DT 'n GreyHawk both - thank ya'll for comments.  I do agree being consistent is the real key to accurate and reproducible loads for sure.  I have used Lee powder scoops in the past and it's amazing how accurate they will throw a powder charge, but it does take being VERY consistent with exactly how to dip, etc to get close to the same.  Now I do have a question here, and please don't take I'm trying to argue with ya'll.  I KNOW I don't know enough to argue {g}

Let's take a case that holds 50cc of volume by water measurement.   If I fill that case level full using GOEX FFFg BP  thru a funnel and trying to be very careful so it's as close as possible to the same all the time.  That should give me a good consistent load.  Now, just for grins let's weight that and find it holds 50 grains by weight on a good scale.  Yea, I know it might not be 50 grains, but that keeps it simple.

Let's say I get a different batch of GOEX FFFg BP and I fill that same case level full using exactly the same method.  It's still got the same 50cc by volume as the first batch, but when I weight on same scale I find it's is more dense giving a weight of 52 grains. 

Will that loaded bullet with 50 cc by volume (but 52 grains by weight) shoot the same fps and pressure as the first batch of of GOEX FFFg BP with 50 grains - remember, they're still the same volume.

As I said, I don't claim to be an expert by any means on BP - or smokeless for that matter.  I'm just looking for guidance, and sometimes I can be slow on the uptake/understanding part so please bear with me.

Ken >
the

I'm gonna say likely no but we are guessing - only way to really know is test it - the longrange blokes are picky on batch to batch variations in powder - how much it matters at hunting ranges ?

Offline KenH

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #118 on: March 01, 2021, 08:16:15 PM »
I'm gonna say likely no but we are guessing - only way to really know is test it - the longrange blokes are picky on batch to batch variations in powder - how much it matters at hunting ranges ?
I don't think it matters at all at the hunting ranges normally considered for lever actions.

Thanks for commenting.

Ken H>

Offline dusty texian

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Re: 1876 Winchester Project Rifle
« Reply #119 on: March 02, 2021, 06:24:16 AM »
Greyhawk answered that exactly how I would have .  I think part of the fun in loading Bp. is trying different  variables  like compression ,charge size , lube choice , bullet type , crimp / no crimp  ect . The record keeping during testing is as important as anything else . Good luck and have fun .,,,,,DT

 

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