4 replies [Last post]
ilsmokepoler's picture
Location: Tinley Park, IL
Joined: 09/07/2009
Posts: 38
Methodology for trying different bullets/loads?

I just got my first muzzleloader, a CVA Accura. Now I am about to start the process of figuring out what my gun likes to shoot and I could use some advice.

I plan to use it to hunt whitetail in S. Illinois and expect my typical shot to be in the 30 -60 yard range with only ocassional shots at 100+ yds. up until now when hunting with 12 ga slugs (rifle hunting is illegal in Illinois) I generally lean towards slugs that make the biggest holes as I prefer that the deer drop as close to where I shoot it as possible. I'm too old and lazy to be hauling it through acres of woods if I can help it.

I keep on hearing that you have to try different bullets and loads to find out what your particilar smokepole likes. The question is - how do I do that without breaking the bank? Is there any system for feeling out what your gun does without spending hundreds of dollars buying a pack of every single projectile on the market?

I also understand that trying different powder loads is important. Do guns also like particular powder BRANDS?

Any guidance would be appreciated. Thanks!

FrontierGander's picture
Location: Boncarbo,CO
Joined: 12/01/2008
Posts: 87
Methodology for trying different bullets/loads?

Hope this will help Thumbs up



My favorite and most Accurate bullet in the Accura as of now,


Winchester 777 primers are fine and all, but i must warn you that they are dirty, DIRTY, DIRTY!! The primer soot they leave behind is just amazing. I really prefer the Winchester W209 Primers as they are Super clean and Accuracy is just as good.

Almost forgot! Heres what these bullets look like when they expand.


saskie's picture
Location: West Carleton, Ottawa, Canada
Joined: 12/23/2002
Posts: 1264
Methodology for trying different bullets/loads?

Start with the cheap ones - especially with the ranges you're talking about. I use my M/L for similar shots and the plain-jane off-the-shelf sabotted Hornady 240gr with 2 x 50gr pyrodex pellets shoots extremely consistent inside 100yds. I suspect that beyond 100yds is when you'll need to find the sweet load for your rifle.

Aside from that....ask the dealer (if you can)

ADKBEAR's picture
Location: Central NY
Joined: 09/16/2003
Posts: 821
Methodology for trying different bullets/loads?

You have got a pretty good gun there. Fact of the matter is it will more than likely shoot any decient bullet ok. The gun is more apt to be picky about the powder charge per weight of bullet than anything else.
my advice is to do some reasearch on a good ML bullet (lots of good ones out there.). Decide what weight bullet you want to shoot and get a bunch of just that bullet.
Then head to the range and zone in your powder charge. Don't know what you are considering for powder?
In general start somewhere (assuming it is 50 cal?) 50 to 70 gr of powder. Work your way up I would not exceed mfg's recomendations for max load. (proub 150 gr of FF Black or BP Substitute powder).
If you are shooting FFF Black I would not recomend exceeding 100 gr (and that is gonna rock ya)

Location: Minnesota
Joined: 11/26/2007
Posts: 74
Methodology for trying different bullets/loads?

Make sure to practice shooting first, so you can shoot consitently before testing bullet and powder combos. It will be important to take out as many variables as possible, when testing combos. I have fallen in love with my combo. The 245 Aero tip from PB with 2 Pyrodex pellets. I have that dialed in tight. Tight groups, no flyers, no keyholes. I know that some say to use 3 pyro pellets, but it just doesn't work for me, and i have heard the same from others. I get flyers and tumblers with 3 pyro pellets.

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