Bullet fit / loading pressure to apply?

BrokenChicken

Active member
Joined
May 20, 2020
Messages
207
Location
Denver, CO
hey guys, i'm making progress and getting lots of help answering my questions so far, so thank for that.
Now i'm onto next question: Bullet fit / loading pressure.
i just tested and loaded (no powder, just the bullets) to see how the whole process feels and for THOR bullets what the right size is.
what i found is that there's quite a bit of different from bullet to bullet.
i'll show all 3 examples, and you guys let me know if all seem OK / reasonable/ normal? thanks

1. Powebelt 295gt Copper Aerotip
- i think this bullet was right in the middle of 3 in terms of pressure needed to apply to load.
- with plastic skirt thing it easily loaded, i then used ram rod to smoothly push it all the way down and it felt right.
- i also removed plastic piece and w/out it, bullet still required me to push it with ramrod but i could literally apply enough pressure with 1 finger to the to of the ramrod and it easily slid all they way down the barre.
--how tight should the bullet itslef (not the plastic part) feel when loading? here is a picture of what groves were left when i loaded with and w/out plastic piece.
--bullet on the LEFT is the one i loaded with plastic piece and RIGHT is the one i did w/out. as you can see those Matt/Not-shiny parts (hard to take a good pic) are the marks left by the barrel. seems right?

2. Hornady BoreDriver ftX 290gr
-i was really excited for this bullet. when i put 1st one in with little red plastic part it felt solid/tight but with ramrod i applied what felt like Good amount of pressure w/out struggling in any way, and this thing seated well.
- however i removed plastic piece to see how the bullet fits on its own, and i was very surprised it DROPPED down the barrel on its own. i tried 3 or 4 from that pack and w/out red plastic piece they all just drop all the way through the barrel on their own. no marks on them when they fall out at the breach plug.
--does this mean it may be .499 or somethign? and may not be best option for my rifle as it wont spin/stabilize enough?
-- whats interesting is that when loaded with red plastic piece in place as it supposed to be, the bullet itself did pick up groove marks.

3. THOR Hammer (size pack: .500, .501, .502, .503)
-.500 as instructions advised i started with smallest .500 size. i used bullet started and with out too much pressure i was able to seat it in place and then push the rest with ramrod. it felt pretty good, **but when compared to 2 bullets above with plastic ends, it felt like .500 THOR went down a little easier. but not too easy. so really i think it felt right.
-.501 i tried to put this down the barrel and i could not push it even to where the short end of bullet starter would go into a barrel. i tried hard, but it would not go. so .501 did not fit.
- here are 2 pictures: LEFT is .500 which i loaded through the barrel total of 3 times, it does look like it makes good contact all the way around about 99% and had light groove marks.
- RIGHT pic is .501 those grove marks that you see are from the first 1/2" or so when i tried to force it in, but ultimately had to push it back from breech side with ram rod as it would get stuck 1/2" in with tip still sticking out the end of the barrel and not go any further.

any feedback will be much appreciated.
thanks
 

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Addicting

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Jan 19, 2017
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5,480
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SW Michigan
You are over thinking this!!!

Load them the way they were designed to be loaded, don’t take them apart, and shoot them.

These companies spend a lot of time engineering them to work a specific way. You taking them apart and worrying yourself was not in the instructions!
 

Gellar

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Jan 31, 2014
Messages
3,671
Location
The Driftless Area
I agree with @Addicting

I start my bullets with a t handle and then use the ramrod. I do not put any bore butter in my gun before I load, but that is the final thing I do when I clean my gun.

I would guess that it takes 15lbs of pressure to seat my bullets. I use .501 thors.

When I size tested the thors I did not have any that would not go down the barrel. The .502 and .503 required more force then I was used to. The .500 did not feel sloppy but it didn’t feel right. I have also used power belts and Hornady bullets and all felt like similar pressure to seat the bullet.

I am planning on shooting my muzzleloader this afternoon!
 

Sheltowee

Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2022
Messages
29
Location
The Front Range
@BrokenChicken I'm working through the same process as you are-- testing several loads/projectiles in a new-to-me Rem 700 Ultimate. I'm just a little way down the Front Range from Denver. Shoot me a direct message if you would like to meet up some time for a range session.

Fwiw-- the Thor .501s slid down my bore with moderate pressure. The .502s required really putting some umph into them. I called Thor and was told the .501s were what I was looking for.
 

BrokenChicken

Active member
Joined
May 20, 2020
Messages
207
Location
Denver, CO
awesome thanks. and yes would be great to go shoot with someone. i'll PM you
i'm just waiting for cleaning kit (on backorder) otherwise i have everything else ready to go out and try at the range.
**will call Thor to confirm but sounds like i'll be ordering .500 as i could not force .501's down the barrel past first 1/2".
 

Orlandy

New member
Joined
Nov 4, 2019
Messages
16
As long as you’re using correct caliber and can get the bullet down the tube you should be good to go! Clean every few shots or when it seems difficult to get the bullet down.
 

Bullshot

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Dec 21, 2018
Messages
751
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Two days into the rising sun
A firm even pressure is all you need. The 500 Thors seem to nicely fit your particular guns, and the others brands will be fine with the plastic peice as the bullets will slightly obturate into rifling upon firing. Don’t try to hammer the 501 thors, but if you do go to all lead, try 501 or even 502 and they should load easier than the oversized copper jacketed.
 

mdcrossbow

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Joined
Feb 25, 2007
Messages
1,212
Location
Gaithersburg Md
I mainly shoot round ball where the patch comes into play. Shooting bullets is different, the bullet and power amount will tell you what's best for your rifle. With the plastic tips you push the bullets snug tight.
Shoot them all with 3 or 4 different loads.
 

Mallardsx2

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Apr 4, 2015
Messages
1,323
I puts down until I can’t push any further. Lol I guess I need to perfect my pushing technique lol
 
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