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Normal Topic Single barrel hammer gun (Read 5541 times)
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Single barrel hammer gun
Apr 16th, 2022 at 4:28pm
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Got a Birmingham 'Joseph Bourne & Son' single barrel hammer gun in 12 gauge I've had for years and years - can't even remember how I got it.
Anyway it's a 32" barrel 4 1/2lb gun nitro proofed 1 1/8 ounce gun with 2 1/2" chambers ........... and I thought I'd shoot it to see how it went.

I only had 2 3/4" cases, so I shortened them with a dowel stuck in the case and a knife.
Then I loaded various black powder combinations with number 6 lead shot.
I started with 70.0grs Goex FFg, two .200" overpowder cards and an ounce of shot - and that patterned a bit gappy at 25 yards.

The best patterned load I fired was 75.0 grs, 2 x .200" OP wads and 1 1/8 oz of shot. And I didn't go higher than that - she's a light gun.
At 25 yards that was quite a tight pattern, but when I fired at a section of hard plastic pipe, the pellets bounced off.
At 20 yards they shattered the plastic .................

That five yards was quite dramatic ..............

That 75.0gr load gave me a velocity of 1035 fps according to the Lyman Black Powder book.
So - some reading ..................

And I came across some bloke who claimed a retained energy of 3 ft/lb per pellet was required to consistantly kill a duck or similar - and that made sense.
That muzzle velocity of 1035 fps didn't even figure on their velocity/energy chart - it was too low.

But, a muzzle velocity of 1135 fps should give me 3.19 ft/lb energy per pellet at ........... wait for it ................ 20 yards.
3 1/4 drams (89.0 grs) of powder will give me 1220 fps MV with 1 1/8 oz - and it will be punishing.
My son has quite a good bruise from shooting those 'pussy loads' this morning, but I wouldn't mind making up a nice rabbit load for that gun - and it was fun shooting it.

I tried one load with a single .200" O/P wad between powder and shot and it was slightly 'gappy', but nowhere near as much as the load with a single OP wad plus 1/2" fibre wad that blew gaps you could put a rabbit in.

Those were old Rabbit Board paper cases I loaded, I once had hundreds of them and some I roll crimped over a shot retaining card and others I just sat the shot card in and left the mouth of the case straight, untouched - and I can't say I noted any difference.
Those cards I got are a big box of hard cardboard Herter cards I got when I was a young fella, and they fit tight.

I just ordered some 11 gauge wads for my old muzzleloader - I polished out the bore on that and jug choked her as she was cylinder bored and I hadn't shot her since I done that.
That's a single too and I used to shoot ducks with that - had a lot of fun with that gun.
I only shoot two overpowder wads through that too, but she shot wide that gun - was a bit short on range.
Hopefully I've cured that and will get a bit more range out of her ............. looking forward to trying her .............  Smiley

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Re: Single barrel hammer gun
Reply #1 - Apr 17th, 2022 at 11:27am
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Had an interesting morning at the range - tried two loads for pattern and penetration.
I looked on the Internet for 'guidance' on the penetration bit and discovered people shooting gel and telephone books, both wet and dry to see what they were getting.
Couldn't be bothered with that, so took some tin cans down ..........

1st load - 82 grs (3 dram) Goex FFg, 2x .200" OP wads, 1 1/16 ounce of 6 lead shot.
That shot an even pattern of 24" diameter at 25 yards - which is pretty tight. I know that gun has 'choke', it says so - but not how much. I'd say full - there weren't too many flyers outside the group.
At 25 yards those pellets went completely through a tin can - both sides.
At thirty yards they went through one side of the can and we found them inside.
I didn't pattern at 30 yards.
The Lyman book tells me I'm getting 1100 fps MV for this load.

The 2nd load was - 89grs (3 1/4 drams) Goex FFg, 2x OP wads, 1 1/8 ounce of shot.
This load didn't pattern quite as well and at 25 yards they only went through one side of the can.
The Lyman book says 1220 fps MV for this one - and if they have that right, I can't understand why it didn't kill that can better  Huh

At fifteen yards using load number '2', we got 31 full penetration strikes on that 410 gram 'Creamed Sweet Corn' can - and that's a lot of pellets on a small can - would shred a rabbit.

As an aside, we sent one shot into a half inch thick, 8 inch diameter plastic pipe and had enough pellets coming back to strike myself (1 strike), my son (3) and a few that rattled against the car - you knew you were getting hit.

Recoil was brisk in such a light gun, but okay. My son snugged the gun into his shoulder instead of holding the butt out on the point of his shoulder and dealt with it much better.

This gun will teach you to shoot accurate - or you will miss


« Last Edit: Apr 18th, 2022 at 10:22am by SF91 »  
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