Blackpowder Pyrodex And Clean Shot

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WARNING: Many manufacturers, including CVA, are now promoting guns which are designed to shoot heavier than standard powder charges. Some shooters have become confused by advertising for these rifles and attempt to use heavier charges and/or projectiles in guns which were not designed to handle the resulting high pressures. Even some experienced shooters have made this mistake. Some have even used what is known as a "duplex load," which is a mixture of blackpowder and smokeless powder. Any percentage of smokeless powder in a duplex load may create pressures equal to a pure smokeless charge and could cause a blackpowder gun to explode. THESE LOADING PRACTICES ARE EXTREMELY DANGEROUS! All shooters need to be completely clear as to the recommended loads of each blackpowder gun that they own.

Only four types of propellant are acceptable for use in CVA muzzleloading firearms. The first type is BLACKPOWDER. (IMPORTANT: The term "blackpowder" refers to the formulation of the propellant, not the color. Many of the smokeless propel-lants manufactured for modern cartridges or shotgun shells are also black in color, but will create extremely dangerous pressures in the muzzleloading barrels.)

When purchasing blackpowder be certain that it is in the original manufacturer's container and that the granulation or type is clearly marked on the label.

Blackpowder is manufactured in four specific types or granulations. The accompanying chart will help identify the types and common usage.


FG (Commonly called Single "F") The muzzleloading enthusiast finds little use for this very coarse blackpowder. Its use is pretty much restricted to the large bore (10, 8, 4 gauge) shotguns of yesterday.

FFG (Commonly called Double "F") This is a very popular powder for the larger (.45 to .58 caliber rifles). It is also used for 12, 16 and 20 gauge muzzleloading shotguns. While it is not considered a pistol 7

powder, it is sometimes used in very large caliber single shot pistols.

FFFG (Commonly called Triple "F") It is used in all percussion revolvers, most single shot pistols, and most of the smaller (under .45 caliber) rifles.

FFFFG (Commonly called Four "F") The finest of all currently available blackpowders, Four "F" is best for priming flintlocks. Due to its limited use, it is sometimes difficult to obtain.

The second type of propellant acceptable for use in CVA muzzleloading firearms is PYRODEX. Pyrodex is a propellant designed for use in percussion rifles, pistols and shotguns found to be in good shooting condition by a competent gunsmith. Pyrodex relates closely to blackpowder on a volume to volume basis, not the weight of the charge. In other words, a scoop type measure set to dispense 100 grains of blackpowder will dispense roughly 72 grains of Pyrodex (Pyrodex is bulkier). This lighter charge weight of Pyrodex will fill the measure and provide a charge which is ballistically similar to 100 grains of blackpowder of the appropriate granulation. Used in this manner, Pyrodex will yield approximately the same velocities and pressures as blackpowder. Pyrodex is currently available in three granulations. These types and their uses are listed below:

PYRODEX RS (rifle & shotgun) Designed for use in all calibers of percussion muzzleloading rifles and shotguns. Pyrodex Select has similar loading characteristics to RS.

PYRODEX P (pistol powder) Designed for use in percussion muzzleloading pistols and cap & ball revolvers. Also used in small caliber rifles.

PYRODEX CTG (cartridge powder) Designed for use in blackpowder cartridges. This powder is not suited for use in muzzleloading firearms.

The third type of propellant acceptable for CVA In-Line rifles is PYRODEX PELLETS.

Pyrodex Pellets for .50 caliber come in two grain equivalents (as of this printing 1/01) - 50 grains and 30 grains. Pellets may be combined into multiple pellet loads to create several different grain equivalent loads. Pyrodex pellets are available in 60 grain equivalents for .54 caliber in-line rifles. For .45 caliber CVA In-Line rifles, .44 caliber Pyrodex Pellets are recommended. These are available in 30 grain increments only.

Pyrodex Pellets contain a black ignitor on one end. For best ignition, this ignitor end of the pellet should be placed into the barrel first.

When using Pyrodex Pellets in CVA In-Line rifles the Musket Cap or 209 primer ignition system is recommended. This system provides the hotter flash necessary to ensure efficient ignition of the entire pellet charge.

Pyrodex Pellets are the only propellant which can be used to create "magnum" loads for CVA "magnum" capable in-line rifles. CVA "magnum" capable rifles include all bolt action in-lines and any year 2001+ Eclipse

and Stag Horn models. These "magnum" capable" guns can be easily identified by the one-piece barrel construction, a serial number ending in 01, 02, 03, and the designation "magnum" on the barrel. Such "magnum" loads do require the use of a musket cap or preferably the #209 shotgun primer ignition in order to fully ignite the charge. Such "magnum" loads should never be fired in a CVA conventional In-Lines that do not feature the one-piece Monoblock barrel design.

The fourth type of propellant acceptable for CVA rifles is Clean Shot. Clean Shot is a propellant designed for use in percussion rifles, pistols, and shotguns found to be in good shooting condition by a competent gunsmith. Clean Shot relates closely to blackpowder on a volume-to-volume basis, not the weight of the charge.

Clean Shot FFG Black Powder Replacement Designed for use in all calibers of percussion muzzle-loading rifles and shotguns.

Clean Shot FFFG Black Powder Replacement Designed to be used in percussion muzzleloading pistols and cap & ball revolvers.

Clean Shot Pelletized Powder Designed for use in .50

caliber and larger in-line rifles with musket cap or #209 ignition. Available in both 30 grain and 50 grain equivalents.

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