New to black powder pistols

Discussion in 'The Powder Keg' started by BIGBADSTU, May 3, 2008.



    I'm new to this and just bought a used fllipiettan 44 cal. I've noticed that there are a couple of different 44. bullets how do I tell which one I need, and how many grains of powder is best to start with.Are there any powders that are better than the other.Do they make any conical shaped hollow points for hunting?
  2. .451 round ball. DO NOT use the same bullets that are used for centerfire loading. 20-30 grains 3f or Pyrodex gependant on frame. open or topstrap

  3. Kodiak32

    Kodiak32 G&G Regular

    Welcome to G&G,

    It sounds like you have Elli Pietta replica revolver, I have a couple also.

    Here's how I load mine,

    Piettea 1858 Remington New Army .451 Ball -24 Grains Pydroex P-#10 CAPS

    URBETI 1947 Walker Colt .454 Ball- 45 grains Pydroex P-#10 CAPS

    Some people like different Brands of powder, just make sure to get powder rated for pistols and follow recommened loading guidelines.

    Here's how I load mine up:

    1) Swab the barrel and inside the cylinders with a clean patch, helps remove any storage oil that might foul the pistol or soak up into the powder. Clean the inside of the nipple, pipe cleaners (smoking) working well.

    2) Fire percussion caps off on each clyinder ( revolver unloaded ), helps dry the clyinders from oil or moisture.

    3) Plan on only loading up five cylinders and use the sixth as a safety. I know that the revovlers have a safety notch, but on a single action revolver that takes some pratice.

    4) Pour in the measured amount powder into each (5) cylinder.

    5) I put in a Wonder Wad into each (5) cylinder by hand.

    *The Wonder Wad does several things, it helps seal the cylinder, takes up space,helps reduce fouling of the revovler and lubricates the barrel.

    5) Insert the ball and press into the cylinder with the loading lever, what you don't want is a ball that fits too loose in cylinder (moves around), usually a good seal is when the lead ball leaves some lead shavings around the cylinder when pressed in.

    *What you want is the ball seated on top powder without any space, if there is space between the ball and powder, the ball can become an obstruction. You don't want a fit so tight it might damage the revovlers loading lever, few lead shavings on when pressed in is good, bending the loading lever is bad.

    7) I'll put a dap of "Butchers Bore Butter" on each cylinder. May be unessecary since I used Wander Wads, just makes me feel good.

    8) This step you want to do right before you shoot and that is installing the percussion caps. Keep the pistol pointed in safe direction while doing this procedure, place a cap on each loaded cylinder. After placing the caps on the loaded cylinders do a controlled rest of the hammer on a safety notch or empty cylinder.

    Actually after you do it a few times the above is fairly easy.


    You might have a small delay at times, so keep the revolver on target. In case of a miss fire on a cylinder, just keep it pointed down range at least 3 minutes just in case. You don't want to advance the next cylinder too soon, because if you do it could be all bad.

    Percussion caps falling off, If you run into this try the next size smaller. If you notice any falling off make sure to put new caps on before firing, you don't want to run the risk of a "Chain Fire" on the other cylinders.

    A chain fire is when the powder in other cylinders ignite after the ignition of another cylinder, this can be traced to non-sealed cylinder either at the nipple end or ball end. They are fairly rare, but can happen.

    Don't let the above scare you off ,BP revolvers are fun. I knew nothing about my first one and it was sort of intimidating, after the sixth time it seemed like old hat. I just wanted you to be informed.


    After shooting besure to clean you pistol. Some powders might give you more time, but I clean mine the same night I usually use Birchwood Casey or Thompson Center T17 bore cleaner. If I shoot alot I remove the grips, but the Walkers are a real Pain in the %?! in that respect.

    Soapy water will even work, just clean.

    After cleaning they get hopes #9 and reoiled every month like all my guns.

    As far as conical bullets here and other supplies look here;

    Dixie Gun Works muzzleloading, blackpowder and rare antique gun supplies.


    Cabela's Official Website - Quality Hunting, Fishing, Camping and Outdoor Gear at competitive prices.

    Cabelas has a Blackpowder loading video, you might check it out.