BP Muzzle Loader For Ducks With Steel

Ducky's Dad

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Anybody here tried a modern BP muzzleloader for ducks with steel shot? My concern is that the gun will need plastic shot cups with thick petals, and BP breech loaders are not supposed to work well with plastic shot cups because the BP melts the plastic. Do MLs have the same problem and is there another approach (other than soft, expensive non-tox shot)? Thanks.
 

bpnclark

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People use them for turkeys but I’ve never heard of anyone using one for ducks? Don’t know of any company that makes a breech loader, but muzzleloaders work with plastic sabots (shot cups) and there’s no problem. They don’t melt.
 

Ducky's Dad

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Thanks for the sabot info. Turkeys are a different game because I suspect most ML hunters may only take one or two shots in a day, so plastic melt would not be much of an issue. And most turkey hunters are using lead so don't require the heavy cup petals unless they are doing it for pattern density. With steel, I'm worried about barrel scoring.

muzzleloaders work with plastic sabots (shot cups) and there’s no problem.
I don't shoot sabots, so no expertise there, but don't most guys use inline MLs with BP equivalents like Pyrodex, rather than real BP?
 

bpnclark

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I’ve shot all the different powders and they’ve all been the same with sabots. Sabots don’t melt. If your barrel is so hot that it would melt a sabot, your powder will probably go off first before you even start to load it.

For bird shooting, wouldn’t you just use a wad? I use the wads in my cap gun with Hornady Great Plains bullets. The ones I'm using are for birdshot.
 

goindeep

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It would have to be one hell of a day to get enough shots off to get your barrel that hot.
 

ilovesprig

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My question is........Why?......... :smiley-skybusters-suck-sign:
 

Ducky's Dad

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My question is........Why?
My answer, as usual, would be: Why not?
Not likely to skybust with BP in a muzzle loader when effective range is probably 35 yards.

Based on what I have read, it's not the barrel temp that melts the wads, it's the burn characteristics of the black powder that melts the wads. Supposedly, BP burns slower than smokeless and takes a while to accelerate the load to full velocity, so more contact time between the plastic wad and the powder charge. This, however, is based on comments from guys who shoot a lot of clays with BP shells (breech loaders, not ML), so the shot volume is higher on any given day than one would expect on a duck hunt. There have been complaints about barrel fouling with melted plastic in their target guns. The target crowd is shooting lead with a plastic shot cup to control pattern density, but I would be using the plastic cup to protect the bore from the steel pellets. Might not be a problem because, unless they raise the limit, I'll only need seven or eight shots in a day. :smiley-yellow:
 

ilovesprig

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I was kidding about skybusting........Just the opposite........I think I'd have the philosophy like they probably did in the old days........Let 'em land and whack on the water....... :smiley-wnk-yellow:
 

Ducky's Dad

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Bought a SxS ML today off GunBroker. Now I'm highly motivated to figure out this stuff before bird season.
 

Ducky's Dad

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I plan to work up some light dove loads over the summer, and maybe test this gun on live targets after the opening weekend yahoos go home. I expect I'll have to adjust leads because of relatively low velocity. May try some steel 6s on late season doves.
 

FredtheGad

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I'd be curious to see the pattern on paper....wish I had the money and spare time I'd like to try what you doing
 

fish dog

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If you hunt a state wildlife area I'm wondering how you determine the 25 shell limit with a muzzle loader? Do you just bring out 37.5 oz of shot (1.5 oz per shot) or what?
 

FredtheGad

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Shot and powder in seperate speed loaders. Count 25, if they want to be technical then you could show u. Only have 25 primers...I'm sure there's a gw that would be stumped by calculating how many shots he had with him lol I'd like to be there to witness a check
 

Ducky's Dad

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I suspect they'd count the caps, but I'm going to check with DFG (it will always be DFG to me) before I go out on a refuge. I'll probably try some speedloaders, but they are expensive. I'm finding that there is no supplier in So Cal for the shotgun stuff I need, so most things will be internet orders. Found a ML site that has some duckers on it and have identified the best plastic shotcups for steel. Also picking up some loading tips for steel. Looks like big pellets and low velocities are in order, as long as my gun's chokes are open enough. I won't know the chokes or bore until the gun gets here and I can measure it. Lots of variation in wads and cards and gas sealing tricks, but it sounds like it's pretty straightforward once you get it figured out for your specific gun. Biggest issue seems to be lack of center density in the patterns because of the lubed overpowder wad and attempts to bump up velocity. More later.
 

ilovesprig

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Hatchet has stated he's a big fan of the lubed overpower wad..........Or was it overpowered lubed wad.......... :smiley-ugly-lol-bashing-sign:
 

Ducky's Dad

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Hatchet's has stated he's a big fan of the lubed overpower wad..........Or was it overpowered lubed wad.
Some of his posts would indicate that he has been a bit lubricated.
 

FredtheGad

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Hey DD maybe u could go with mixed shot like the old remm duplex loads a bb and 2 shot mix.might fill the holes if you have any in your pattern
 

Ducky's Dad

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Gun is not here yet, so no idea of bores or chokes. Will start simple and work up from there. May get lucky and get good results from one of the loads that the other ML duckers are using. Fortunately, there are are lot of Pedersolis out there so lots of guys using them. Unfortunately, no two of them seem to be alike.
 

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I have used my muzzle loader for hunting pheasants and turkeys so I don't think ducks would be much different. I personally like using fiber wads which I lube with hopes 9 black powder solvent and patch lubricant.
 
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