Upgrade... Recommendatios?

Brian in Montana

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Jan 20, 2017
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1,238
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Ramsay, MT
I have a Traditions Hawken .50 cal. Its kinda fun to shoot, but the past few years I've been able to draw an antlerless mulie tag for the area where I live. We live in great mulie country, and I can literally walk out the back door and hunt, but for this area it has to be shotgun, archery, black powder. I'm thinking of investing in a more modern style ML. Don't want to spend a pile of $, but something I could put a 4X scope on and use on evenings when I'm wanting maybe a little less challenge than old sidelock iron sights. I'd like to keep in in the neighborhood of $300. Thonghts?
 

p_ham

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Jul 6, 2017
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573
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Fallon, NV
Cva optima would put you around 300, for not much more the accura v2 would be my choice. I got a black synthetic/stainless out the door for 375. It's been very accurate with alnost every load ive tried.
 

Hem

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May 20, 2009
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Three Forks, Mt
Seriously, get an Encore . Then you are set up with a frame to swap barrels. I just hunt blackpowder with mine but the sky is the limit.
 

Brian in Montana

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Jan 20, 2017
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Ramsay, MT
Cva optima would put you around 300, for not much more the accura v2 would be my choice. I got a black synthetic/stainless out the door for 375. It's been very accurate with alnost every load ive tried.
Out of curiosity, what is the twist rate in your CVA and whats the load/bullet you use for it?

CVA is one I'm considering.
 

turbobrick

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Nov 8, 2018
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Seriously, get an Encore . Then you are set up with a frame to swap barrels. I just hunt blackpowder with mine but the sky is the limit.
Man, I really love my Encore. We can't use scopes on muzzleloaders in ML season here in NV, so I haven't shot it out past open sight distances. But I enjoy it, and really like having it as a platform to try out other calibers. Probably the best out of the box trigger I've ever had too.
 

Mthuntr

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Oct 9, 2009
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3,408
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In the Sagebrush of SW Montana
Brian is this an official weapons restricted area from FWP? If that's the case then the bullets need to be plain lead. If you can find them the Powerbelt plain lead bullets would probably be best and then it would be a toss up between Great Plains bullet and T/C Maxihunter.

I've experimented with casting some Lee R.E.A.L bullets with mixed results in an inline. I think the light bullet with heavy powder charge it made for an unstable bullet.
After my Traditions Inline decided to stop shooting, I bought a rifled slug barrel and started shooting those as you can use sabots in weapons restricted areas.
 

Brian in Montana

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Jan 20, 2017
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Ramsay, MT
Brian is this an official weapons restricted area from FWP? If that's the case then the bullets need to be plain lead. If you can find them the Powerbelt plain lead bullets would probably be best and then it would be a toss up between Great Plains bullet and T/C Maxihunter.
Actually its not an official weapons restriction area. Its a doe tag that is not valid on national forest land. I live in an area that used to be a big cattle ranch that has now been subdivided - 20, 60, 120 acre lots. Its private land all around but we have an HOA that allows hunting on each others property within the old ranch boundary. Restrictions are shotgun, archery, or muzzleloader; no crossing fences (there are very few) and no shooting within 100yds of a house. The tag isn't hard to draw and parts of the old ranch are swarming with deer. Mostly does, but its fun to chase them around out here.

250 grain TC Maxihunter is what I use in my Hawken. I've shot a coupe deer with it over the years. But still I'm thinking of something a little different.

Kind of leaning toward a CVA Wolf.
 

Hem

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May 20, 2009
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Three Forks, Mt
Man, I really love my Encore. We can't use scopes on muzzleloaders in ML season here in NV, so I haven't shot it out past open sight distances. But I enjoy it, and really like having it as a platform to try out other calibers. Probably the best out of the box trigger I've ever had too.
Yep, no complaints with mine whatsoever. I hunted open sights initially but soon scoped it. Once I had my load worked out it's been very consistent. Capable out to 200 yds but I use it primarily for close quarter whitetail. Most shots 20-50 yds.
I've killed a moose and some muleys with my traditional but these days with limited hunting time I feel more comfortable taking the Encore mostly because it's more accurate...and always goes boom when you pull the trigger. Fair amount of screw ups with the traditional, mostly with powder getting damp in inclement weather. Get to admire a 330 bull on my buddies wall every time I visit...I misfired and he followed up with an .06.😔 ouch!
 

Mthuntr

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Oct 9, 2009
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In the Sagebrush of SW Montana
I tried Harvester Black Sabots and Hornady SST 250 grain .452 caliber bullet over 110 grains of Blackhorn 209 with great accuracy. I tried Knight Bloodline (brass bullets) and they shot ok and got better when I switched to the black harvester sabots
 

p_ham

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Jul 6, 2017
Messages
573
Location
Fallon, NV
Out of curiosity, what is the twist rate in your CVA and whats the load/bullet you use for it?

CVA is one I'm considering.
1:28 twist. I am shooting 290gr Barnes TMZ over 105gr of Blackhorn.

I have shot bullets from 250gr Barry's bulk to 405gr hard cast and it has performed well. Ive got some 420gr full diameter cast bullets I still need to try.

I have heard good things about the wolf. We're open sights here and the accura fit me the best.
 

LopeHunter

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May 31, 2007
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2,419
Location
MO-->CA-->NW-->AZ&NW
I use a T/C Omega 50 caliber. Rock solid and simple to clean. Has shot well with a peep to 100 yards and with a scope to 200 yards. Never shot another muzzleloader so no idea how compares to other choices.
 

prhunter

Active member
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Aug 2, 2014
Messages
650
Location
Far West Texas
I use a 50 cal Traditions Pursuit LT. I have had it for a while now. I have taken deer, elk and pronghorn with it. I have had zero issues. I have it topped off with a low power scope. 1:28 rate of twist. Very reliable set up and didn't cost much.
 

OleRedbeard

Active member
Joined
Oct 28, 2019
Messages
81
Location
Virginia
CVA makes a wonderful muzzleloader. Their Nitride finish and breech plug removal are the bees knees. We have a really long MZ season where I live and can hunt with one pretty much from Nov to the first of Jan so I usually try to keep a good frontloader or 3 around.
I have owned TC and Knight and everything in between over the years and for a period CVA was turning out some real junk they seem to have fixed those issues though. The last 2 I have owned were CVA and both were not only tack drivers but have/had the nitride finish and were a breeze to clean. The nitride finish also stops the biggest culprit of all when it comes to the MZ. Corrosion. You still have to clean your weapon when you are done shooting but it will not turn up the beginning of next season full of rust and pits. I had the accura V2 LR nitride. But it was simply too much gun for the big woods. Sold it and bought the Accura MR Nitride. With 110 grains of Blackhorn 209 and a 290 grain Barnes copper it will shoot quite well. That's 4 shots if you look close. Swab with a bore snake in between shots (about the only time I recommend a bore snake)
The easily removed breech plug makes it a breeze to shoot a clean bore between shots. You wont see much difference on the loading either with the nitride barrel combined with the blackhorn. The swabbing in between shots is done because I usually leave my MZ loaded for a week or so at a time during season unless its shot at something. I don't like the fact of it being sighted in on a dirty barrel and then cleaned. You never really know till your sitting in the woods wondering if it actually changed your POI. Its just easier to sight in with a clean barrel and also allows a little time for it to cool. I'm rambling now so I will shut up.
IMG_20191028_170451753_HDR.jpg
 
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bowhuntmontana

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Feb 17, 2011
Messages
933
Location
Utah, after 30+yrs in MT
I tried Harvester Black Sabots and Hornady SST 250 grain .452 caliber bullet over 110 grains of Blackhorn 209 with great accuracy. I tried Knight Bloodline (brass bullets) and they shot ok and got better when I switched to the black harvester sabots
I use a similar combination. Can't say enough good things about the Harvester Sabots. Just like reloading, I had to try several different bullet, sabot, and powder weight combos to see what my gun (CVA Optima V2) liked. I would definitely recommend Blackhorn 209. I don't think there is a better powder out there and you can get very precise loads if you choose to weigh them.
 
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