I have a modern version of a Hawken, .54 cal., Cabela's sporterized model, made in Italy. It has a chrome-lined bore and some other little modifications. The manufacturer's literature said 90 grains MAXIMUM of black powder, while places like Hornady list loads for 54 cal up to 120 grains, and the latest Barnes manual talks about 140 and 150 grain loads! My gun's manufacturer says NEVER exceed the 90 grain limit, which seems really out of line. Now I know that maybe Hornady and Barnes are based on other rifles or whatever, but still - there's a huge difference between 150 grains, 120 grains, and a 90 grain MAXIMUM.
By the way, I've owned it for 2 years and shoot 90 grains of Pyrodex RS out of it. It shoots fine, but for elk hunting, I'm wondering if I should try heavier loads. Anybody able to help me with this confusion? Thanks