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Thread: My First Burnside - Percussion Cap/Powder Selection

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    Duigiud is offline
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    My First Burnside - Percussion Cap/Powder Selection

    Hello, I?m a first time owner of a Burnside Carbine, or will be this December after I finish paying it out of lay-away, (my Xmas present to myself). I found it on Gun Broker. It?s a 5th model, serial number 8733. The weapon is in outstanding condition. The seller listed it as a possible ?Unissued? weapon with the bore in mint condition. I can?t copy and post the pics from GB. I?ve been doing research to learn as much about this weapon as I can. I?ve bought Edward Hull?s books and seen YTube videos. I have two questions that I hope someone can help me with, the first is what size percussion caps will I need to use and second is it possible to use substitute black powder? Any recommendations as to percussion caps and black powder substitutes would be much appreciated.
    Last edited by Duigiud; 2 Weeks Ago at 12:49 PM.

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    Hi Dui,
    Go to Lodgewood Mfg. You not only need .562 bullets and musket caps (any brand will do), you also need some cartridge cases. Lodgewood has some nylon ones cheap.
    I don't use black powder substitutes. It seems contrary to nature. But if you insist, you'll probably find a modern gun store with the stuff. There's a ton of information on Burnsides on this site if you use the search up above. Good luck! By the way, use LOTS of lube on your bullets. Crisco will do.

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    Carolina Reb is offline
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    Burnsides take standard musket size caps. Past that, you will get A LOT of different load suggestions. I like the Accurate Molds 56-390A. It's about as close to the original bullet as you will find in a modern mold. 29-33 grains of Swiss FFF should get you pretty close to a good shooting load. I have never tried the black powder substitutes. Fill the extra space in the cartridge case with a cotton ball fluff. An unrolled cotton ball will do a dozen or so cartridges. Lube bullets with SPG to get started. You can mix up a good lube by melting beeswax (the real thing, not craft store substitute) with some olive oil. 2 ounces of wax to a tablespoon of oil works well but the ratio is not at all critical.

    Have fun with your new carbine!

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    Duigiud is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eggman View Post
    Hi Dui,
    Go to Lodgewood Mfg. You not only need .562 bullets and musket caps (any brand will do), you also need some cartridge cases. Lodgewood has some nylon ones cheap.
    I don't use black powder substitutes. It seems contrary to nature. But if you insist, you'll probably find a modern gun store with the stuff. There's a ton of information on Burnsides on this site if you use the search up above. Good luck! By the way, use LOTS of lube on your bullets. Crisco will do.
    Thanks Eggman! I?ve ordered some brass cartridges and burnside bullets from LW. I?m still trying to figure out what caps to buy that will fit. The Cap sizes are confusing to me. I don?t know if #10 or #11 will fit. Then there?s a 209 cap and Musket Caps. The 209 and Musket caps don?t seem to have size numbers, (one size fits all?).

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    EPPS1919 is offline
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    A 209 is a shot gun primer. There used for inline guns you need Musket caps they are much bigger than #10 or #11 caps RWS makes very good caps


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Carolina Reb is offline
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    The cap number is 1081, but everybody just calls them Musket Caps. There are probably some oddballs out there, but musket caps fit pretty much all military muskets, rifles and carbines that take caps.

    By your serial number you are probably getting a "Model of 1864". Burnside switched over to Spencer carbine production late in the war, but the switch took way longer than expected, so they restarted the single shot carbine line. They made some minor changes with the restart, such as a longer trigger plate to reinforce the stock wrist, and reset serial numbers to 1. A lot of the '64 carbines were never issued.

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    Hi again Dui,
    Well you're getting a fast sample of that old adage, "Opinions are like____________, everybody's got one." Now those brass cases, once you fire them you need to clean them -- in the case of BP, you need to wash them (BP residue is salt). By the way, did I mention that you need to anneal those brass cases before you fire them. You take your torch, heat them until they're just turning red, and then quench in water. This gets rid of that brassian brittleness. We in the N-SSA all shoot light loads - that's the reason the fellow recommended filler. You'll notice the mouth of your cases curl in after firing. You'll have to straighten the rim back out to reload. I'd recommend 35 grains BP for a load (or an equal load by volume of the sub).
    You need to join the N-SSA and try the thing out in team competition. It's organiastic.

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    Kevin Tinny is offline
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    Hello, Duigiud:

    There are some very good reasons to avoid certain traditional black powder substitutes in fine originals. There is a lot of less than correct info on the Web and in some shrewdly worded advertising.

    If you wish to know why most of us avoid "substitutes", and how to properly clean after shooting traditional BP, please PM me with a way to contact you. Will be happy to share.
    You sure do not want to learn the hard way on a pristine Burnside!

    Very Respectfully,
    Kevin Tinny

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Tinny View Post
    Hello, Duigiud:

    There are some very good reasons to avoid certain traditional black powder substitutes in fine originals. There is a lot of less than correct info on the Web and in some shrewdly worded advertising.

    If you wish to know why most of us avoid "substitutes", and how to properly clean after shooting traditional BP, please PM me with a way to contact you. Will be happy to share.
    You sure do not want to learn the hard way on a pristine Burnside!

    Very Respectfully,
    Kevin Tinny
    With all due respect, why not put it on here for the whole world to look at?

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    Duigiud is offline
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    Hey guys, thanks for the replies! But stand by, cause I?m gonna be asking ya more. Just be patient with this newbie. I?m a retired Federal Special Agent and was a firearms instructor/range officer throughout my entire 33 plus year career. However, I have ZERO knowledge of black powder weapons, loading them, casting bullets for them and cleaning them. In short no knowledge of their Manual of Arms. Someone ought to start a new thread entitled, ?Burnside Carbine for Dummies? and stock it chuck full from A to Z with info a sort of one stop shop for the newbie. It would save everyone allot of time. Again, I wish to thank those who have responded and those who haven?t read my thread yet.

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