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Joined: 08/26/2005
Posts: 46
New to the board, but need some info

As I had said, I am new to the board and this is my first posting. What I was wondering is, I have a CVA bobcat 50. Caliber Muzzleloader, and don't have the first clue of what load I should use or projectile. Deer season is 2 months away, and I was going to see what loads and projectiles you use if you have this gun, any info will help. I have done ruled out one load, I have used 90 gain pyrodex and hornaday 290 grain sabots, and they don't hold a pattern for nothing, so I gave up on them. One of the guys I work with says he has an old CVA 50. Caliber, and when he used his, he said he used 90 grain pyrodex and about a 230 grain sabot, not sure what brand it was, but he said he took a 6 point buck 2 years ago at about a 150 yards. I also have some Thompson center maxi-ball conicals which work good, but they are heavy and drop pattern after 3 shots. Any information you can give me would be great! Thumbs up

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Location: Colorado
Joined: 02/27/2003
Posts: 394
New to the board, but need some info

First thing you need to do is carefully read the regulations for hunting in your state. Don't rely on friends or salespeople at a gun store to know the laws. It's amazing how many people go out hunting during muzzleloader season with equipment that is completely illegal! Lots of states prohibit sabots. Many prohibit pelletized powder. Others prohibit scopes, or certain types of caps. You don't want to lose your hunting privileges because of a silly mistake.

Now, having said that, on to your question. The bottom line is that every muzzleloader is an individual and you're just going to have to shoot a lot of different combinations through yours to find out what it likes best. Do you know what rate of twist the rifling is? That will have a large influence on the best projectile to use.

For a .50 caliber a load somewhere around 90 grains sounds about right. You should probably experiment with different types of powder--Pyrodex, Triple 7, and real blackpowder--as well as more and/or less powder to see what it likes.

Where I live sabots are not allowed during the muzzleloader hunting season (though all gun shops sell them and I have yet to find a salesperson who realizes they are illegal for hunting). Because of this I use lead conicals. The Thompson maxi-ball is one of my favorites. Yes, it's heavy--that's a good thing when hunting elk and not bad for any kind of game. In my gun, with relatively light loads of powder, they shoot extraordinarily well.

Don't try to find the load that shoots the farthest in your gun, find the load that shoots the best. A muzzleloader is basically a 100 yard gun anyway, and a little effort in the hunting will get you within that range 99% of the time.

Good luck!

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Moderator
Location: Wa.
Joined: 03/31/2004
Posts: 1300
New to the board, but need some info

One thing that Donmillion left out.
A muzzle loader needs the barrel cleared of fouling to maintain any accuracy. Frequency depends on the powder of choice. It could be as frequently as every other round or as infrequently as every sixth round. Depends on the barrel and the powder choice.
It's all about trial. As Donmillion said, They all have their particulars. You may or may not be able to shoot the load you wish. Shoot the combo that works the best and give the best accuracy at 100 yds.

The basic rule of thumb is. Slow twist barrels favor round ball. Fast twist barrels favor conicals. The faster the twist, the longer the conical.

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Joined: 08/26/2005
Posts: 46
I appreciate the help

I thank you guys for the help on here. I picked up a hunting and trapping guide yesterday, and reading it everyday on lunch at work. Alot has changed, because now for the first time ever, Tennessee is going to allow the use of crossbows during archery and gun seasons. The main reason they are doing this is because of all the dear killed here, not even 10% of the dear killed in tennessee were killed by bow, so they are hoping this will help bring in more numbers.

True, the Maxi-ball is a good conical, but I may have to do more work with it. My manual talks about putting 80 grains of powder and fire it to foul the barrel, because this will help with accuracy of the conical. I may go out this weekend after I get back from fishing and try some more experiments with this. In Tennessee, you can use round ball, sabot, or conical in a muzzleloader.

I like the way the gun feels, it is light, partially because it has a polymer pistol stock, which softens recoil. The barrel is 1:48 twist, which works great for conicals. I am debating on if I want to try Powerbelts or not.

Bottom line, I have heard alot of people say they wouldn't trust this gun to save their lives, but I see potential in it. I have taken the original plain sights off, and put Tru-Glo fiber optic sights, which helps greatly in the very early morning or just before sunset shots. I have taken the original #11 percussion cap off, and put a musket nipple on it, which gives more fire to the charge. I have not had one misfire. The only downfalls of these are that the caps do not burn the charge all the way, and when you sight in, and you are wearing a short sleeve shirt, the cap sends tiny pieces of the cap into the inside of your forearm when you fire. I am thinking about trying the Mag-Spark, which uses standard 209 primers and that are cheaper, burns the charge more for more consistancy. and when you shoot with this, no fragments of the primer fly into your arm.

My downfall may also be I am new to muzzleloading, and sighting in to me is tricky, but I believe I have it nearly sighted in. Some people say get the barrel tapped and get a scope on the barrel. I don't want too, I want to use the sights, thats what they are there for. I will only use a scope when my vision gets bad enough I can't use the sights.

My father in law has a .45 caliber muzzleloader he has had for almost 40 years, and still uses it to this day.

Part of my problem also may be my targets, they are only 25 yard targets, and I need to get some for 100.

I thank you guys for the help, I hope that this year will be a successful hunting season. We can take up to 3 bucks a season, and 3 does a day. Good luck to you guys in the upcoming season, I hope you get a good harvest too.

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Location: NONYA,thats in MONTANA
Joined: 07/22/2005
Posts: 242
New to the board, but need some info

I hunted with a CVA hunter 209 Mag,great gun.If i was you i would use 2 50gr pyrodex pellets and a .45 cal sabott out of your .50 cal ML.Those sabottsmake all the difference as far as range and accuracy! Thumbs up

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Joined: 08/26/2005
Posts: 46
I had heard about that

One of the guys I work with had said he uses a 240 grain .45 sabot in his 50, and he said it makes for distance, power and accuracy.

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