Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 56

between the slowest and fastest rounds
in a group - is greater with loose powder
or pellets.
While powder is available in grades
from Fg to FFFFg, which references
the coarseness of the granules and the
powder's burning rate, pellets don't have
a listed burning rate.
I knew, however, that Hodgdon Triple
7 pellets are made with FFg powder. So,
if I tested their performance against Triple
7 FFg loose powder, using two 50-grainby-volume pellets versus a measured 100
grains of loose powder, both would seem
to get equal treatment for fair analysis.
I used two bullets in the test - 295-grain
PowerBelts and 250-grain Remington
slugs, which are made by Barnes.
The barrel was cleaned after each
shot, ensuring each bullet would be fired
through a clean bore, and all shots were
taken at 100 yards. Jason did all the shooting, while I carried out the between-shots
cleaning chores.
We first loaded the PowerBelt with
two pellets. It resulted in a group I didn't
even bother measuring, as the three shots
spanned nearly 10 inches, with an ES of
103 fps and an SD of 45 fps.
The lighter Barnes bullet with two pellets was even less accurate and consistent
- producing an about 12-inch group, an
ES of 118 fps and an SD of 59 fps.
Then we moved on to testing 100
grains by volume of loose powder.
Using the PowerBelt, Jason made his
first shot, then after I cleaned the gun, the
second.
The chronograph flashed DUP1 - a
duplicate of the first shot in muzzle velocity, 1,626 fps.
While Jason long had groaned about
loose powder being too tedious to use,
it doesn't get more consistent than this.
But it did. The third shot was another
56

duplicate at 1,626 fps. Jason shook his
head in disbelief.
The Barnes bullet also shot better with
loose powder, with an ES of 27 fps and
an SD of 12 fps.
Accuracy also improved with loose
powder, with both bullets grouping within
5 inches.
Jason then shot a group with my hunting combo - the 295-grain PowerBelt
with 100 grains of Black MZ loose
powder - and shot a 1ΒΌ-inch group.
At that point, he grudgingly said, "I
guess that's the load I'll use for hunting
in my Encore muzzleloader."
Loose powder really isn't tedious to
use, and hunters needn't worry about a lag
time in reloading because loose powder
can be pre-measured and placed with a
bullet in a speedloader for utility in the
field. It takes no more time to pour powder
than to drop pellets down the barrel.
I've come to prefer the T/C Quick Shot
Loading Tool, which sell for about $6.
And for about $31, T/C offers a speedloader that holds multiple charges.
A powder measure is, of course, a
necessity. I prefer clear plastic to brass
because they allow me to see if all the
powder has dropped into the barrel, which
is important, because powder tends to
cling to a measurer's side walls, and shortchanging the charge will have impacts.
Muzzleloaders are just like centerfire
rifles in that there are powders and bullets
that just don't work as well in some guns.
Each has a recipe it likes best.
Through practice and experimentation,
you can find the best load combination for
your inline.
And if you try the same test I did, you
might just come away with a newfound
appreciation for loose powder.



Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020

Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - Intro
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - Cover1
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 2
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 3
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 6
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 7
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 8
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 9
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 11
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 12
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 13
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 14
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 16
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 17
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 18
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 19
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 20
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 21
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 22
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 23
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 24
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 25
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 26
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 27
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 28
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 29
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 30
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 32
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 33
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 34
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 35
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 36
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 37
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 38
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 39
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 40
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 41
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 44
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 45
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 46
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 47
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 48
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 49
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 50
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 51
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 52
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 53
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 54
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 55
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 56
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 57
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 59
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 60
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 61
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - 64
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - September 2020 - Cover4
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