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#7077632 - 11/15/12 Ignition Issues
chain Offline
Member

Registered: 12/10/07
Posts: 146
I have a CVA mountain rifle 54/58 that I got from a member here and I love the rifle but I am having ignition problems with Pyrodex. I leave it outside so not to get condensation but sometimes it just doesn't go off. I am pretty green to these weapons and I welcome all suggestions. Some guys locally have told me to go to regular black powder rather than Pyrodex. Thank you

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#7077674 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: chain]
Steelhead Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 10/17/02
Posts: 73067
Loc: Between Glib and Flippant
Are you running #11's or Musket nipple/cap? I switched to the Musket nipple/cap and should have started that way as I knew better.
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#7077742 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: chain]
Longbeardking Online   content
Campfire Outfitter

Registered: 01/14/04
Posts: 8286
Loc: Lyndeborough New Hampshire
Originally Posted By: chain
I have a CVA mountain rifle 54/58 that I got from a member here and I love the rifle but I am having ignition problems with Pyrodex. I leave it outside so not to get condensation but sometimes it just doesn't go off. I am pretty green to these weapons and I welcome all suggestions. Some guys locally have told me to go to regular black powder rather than Pyrodex. Thank you


Pyrodex is just one of those "black powder substitutes" that some think requires less care than black powder. BOTH absorb moisture. When I shot my BP guns, I would NEVER think of starting the next day with yesterday's load. Each and EVERY day I would shoot the gun and give it a complete cleaning. Next morning I would go through the drying out proceedure and start the day with a fresh charge. If it was an extremely moist day or light rain, I would put my cap on and then drip candle wax over the cap and nipple to attempt to keep things dry. If you do this and start every day with a dry fresh charge I think your problem would be solved.
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#7077823 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: chain]
nighthawk Offline
Campfire Outfitter

Registered: 06/01/05
Posts: 8046
Loc: NE South Dakota
I've tried all the tricks I've read over the years on my mountain rifle and never did get completely reliable ignition with Pyrodex. Pretty good but not perfect except for nipple charging with black powder which is a PITA and has its own problems. Possibly I could have worked it out but I decided to stop beating myself over the head and went back to black powder which fires every time. Saved the Pyrodex for weapons where it works more reliably. I don't think it has to do with leaving it loaded. Rather the breech geometry and that Pyrodex has to get hotter to ignite.

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#7077913 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: nighthawk]
saddlesore Online   content
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 06/22/01
Posts: 11572
Loc: Colorado Springs, CO, USA
Keping it dry is th esecret. There are small rubber or plastic cap covers you can buy to skip down over the nipple and cap, or use some wax or duct seal,which also works.Tape the end of you barrel with electricians tape ,just as you would a center fire rifle. Seal that barrel as well as you can.
If the humidity is high or raining.I pull the load every evening (I don't shoot it) and run a pacth or two with methanol down the barrel to absorb any moisture.Then I give it a light coating of Bore butter, swab withadry patch and reload.

I have always used standard #11 percussion caps and don't remember any ignition problems. I stopped using Pydodex years ago when 777 came out,but I have gone back to black powder.My inline,I use 209 primers.
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#7077932 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: saddlesore]
milespatton Offline
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 08/31/02
Posts: 12493
Loc: Arkansas
Quote:
Keping it dry is th esecret.


True that but I also think that getting a side lock dry in the first place is harder than for an inline. Even using very hot water and firing some caps, it seemed to me there was some moisture present that should not have been. I don't use a side lock any more but if I did, I would look into maybe using some type of air flow through the system after cleaning. miles
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#7077991 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: milespatton]
saddlesore Online   content
Campfire 'Bwana

Registered: 06/22/01
Posts: 11572
Loc: Colorado Springs, CO, USA
Originally Posted By: milespatton
Quote:
Keping it dry is th esecret.


True that but I also think that getting a side lock dry in the first place is harder than for an inline. Even using very hot water and firing some caps, it seemed to me there was some moisture present that should not have been. I don't use a side lock any more but if I did, I would look into maybe using some type of air flow through the system after cleaning. miles


Go to Home Depot and buy a gallon of methanol( alcohol) after cleaning with water or solvent, purge the whole system with methanol.( with the nipple out) The methanol is hydroscopic and will combine with any moisture present and then dries it out.You only have to take a pint or so to hunting camp to do this.

Let it set a few minutes and then fire a cap. Guaranteed ,you won't have any moisture in it.

I learned this years ago when we were building ultra clean stainless steel system. Wo would degrease with acetone or other degreaser in anultra sonic, bath in distilled water to flush off the degreaser and then bath in alcohol in another ultra sonic cleaner. In that method we used Ethanol ( grain alcohol) as it left no residue. A bottle fo 180 Ethanol from aliquor store will work just as good and you can always drink what you don't use of the ethanol.
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#7077996 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: chain]
Bricktop Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 11/14/05
Posts: 7422
Loc: With your mother.....
Originally Posted By: chain
I have a CVA mountain rifle 54/58 that I got from a member here and I love the rifle but I am having ignition problems with Pyrodex. I leave it outside so not to get condensation but sometimes it just doesn't go off. I am pretty green to these weapons and I welcome all suggestions. Some guys locally have told me to go to regular black powder rather than Pyrodex. Thank you
Pyrodex, Triple 7, and other black powder substitutes SUCK in sidelock muzzleloaders for hunting purposes. They require a higher ignition temperature than black and seem to be more susceptible to exposure to ambient conditions. Pyrodex really kicks ass in range sessions; you're typically loading and shooting right away when the weather is nice, vice hunting when the weather might be below 50 F and 90%+ humidity and you carry the gun for three or four hours before taking a shot.

I shoot a T/C Renegade, while my dad alternates between a mid-'70s vintage T/C Hawken and a T/C White Mountain Carbine. All are well-maintained and shot throughout the year on a regular basis. We use Hot Shot nipples and Knight Red Hot nipples and have even tried musket nipples with musket caps. We load fresh charges each morning, thoroughly clean the guns every night, and clear the flash channel with caps each morning. For the past five years, in particular, we have each experienced a consistently maddening string of hangfires. (This leads me to believe that the current formulation of these substitutes has been tailored to high volume, 209-primed inlines.)

I went back to black powder for hunting purposes, but use substitutes for range purposes where I'm likely to shoot a greater amount.
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Originally Posted By safariman
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Originally Posted By Fireball2
The campfire is the most outside exposure I get. No TV, no newspaper.

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#7078053 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: Bricktop]
chain Offline
Member

Registered: 12/10/07
Posts: 146
I have been using #11 caps. I think I will try Black powder. What is the story on the other nipples ? Thank you. The weather here in Northern Michigan isn't the driest in early December when we hunt with ML's but I do try to keep everything dry. Thanks again.

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#7078068 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: chain]
bigblock455 Online   content
Campfire Guide

Registered: 05/24/07
Posts: 2771
cabelas sells a hollow base spitfire nipple, great thing to use.
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#7078172 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: chain]
Bricktop Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 11/14/05
Posts: 7422
Loc: With your mother.....
Originally Posted By: chain
I have been using #11 caps. I think I will try Black powder. What is the story on the other nipples ? Thank you. The weather here in Northern Michigan isn't the driest in early December when we hunt with ML's but I do try to keep everything dry. Thanks again.
The Hot Shot, Knight Red Hot, and Spitfire nipples all provide an alleged advantage in ignition over standard nipples through flame pattern, flash chamber shape, volume, etc. I don't know how much of that is hype and how much is real. I do know they will more securely hold your cap than most factory supplied nipples on the Italian muzzleloaders (which your CVA is).

The only ones currently available for your gun are the MSMs (MSM = Mountain States Muzzleloading = Spitfire) and the AMPCO variety. (I believe you'll need a 6mm x 1mm.) Get a couple of those and a pound of FFG and you'll be set.
_________________________
I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass. And I'm all out of bubblegum.

Originally Posted By safariman
I do tend to fit in well wherever I go in person.

Originally Posted By Fireball2
The campfire is the most outside exposure I get. No TV, no newspaper.

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#7078363 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: Bricktop]
nighthawk Offline
Campfire Outfitter

Registered: 06/01/05
Posts: 8046
Loc: NE South Dakota
I use Hot Shot nipples with good results. I liked the theory at the time but I don't know how much is real either. Plain AMPCO nipples in various other firearms have worked well too,

Quote:
but I also think that getting a side lock dry in the first place is harder than for an inline

With the CVA mountain rifle a lot can hide in the drum part of the breech and affect both ignition and the charge. You need to take out the cleanout screw and work a couple Q-Tips through it.

I finish with water displacing oil and patch until dry. Then pull an impressive amount of oil and some water with a swab through the cleanout hole. Probably wouldn't do much for reliability when left loaded, which I've done with no problems.

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#7078638 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: nighthawk]
chain Offline
Member

Registered: 12/10/07
Posts: 146
Thanks guys. Bricktop, I love Pinedale, I was there elk hunting in Sept. My favorite place.

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#7078663 - 11/15/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: chain]
Bricktop Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 11/14/05
Posts: 7422
Loc: With your mother.....
Originally Posted By: chain
Thanks guys. Bricktop, I love Pinedale, I was there elk hunting in Sept. My favorite place.
Next time I go, I'll tell the chamber of commerce. smirk
_________________________
I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass. And I'm all out of bubblegum.

Originally Posted By safariman
I do tend to fit in well wherever I go in person.

Originally Posted By Fireball2
The campfire is the most outside exposure I get. No TV, no newspaper.

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#7079724 - 11/16/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: chain]
benchman Online   content
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 04/15/05
Posts: 2439
I have a CVA Bobcat that had ignition problems with Pyro. I tried a Musket cap, but did not have enough clearance to use it. Switched to 777, and that solved the problem.

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#7079840 - 11/16/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: benchman]
Bricktop Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 11/14/05
Posts: 7422
Loc: With your mother.....
Originally Posted By: benchman
I have a CVA Bobcat that had ignition problems with Pyro. I tried a Musket cap, but did not have enough clearance to use it. Switched to 777, and that solved the problem.
That's nothing more than a placebo effect. Black powder has an ignition temperature of approximately 570 F (I've seen claims of a temperature as low as 450 F); Pyrodex and Triple 7 both have an ignition temperature of approximately 750 F. If for some reason you've led yourself into believing Pyrodex is harder to ignite than Triple 7 or vice-versa, you likely have other factors at work. At any rate, I've shot enough of all three mentioned powders in my T/C and my various Lymans to know better than to believe any claim that Triple 7 is easier to ignite than anything beyond simple dirt.
_________________________
I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass. And I'm all out of bubblegum.

Originally Posted By safariman
I do tend to fit in well wherever I go in person.

Originally Posted By Fireball2
The campfire is the most outside exposure I get. No TV, no newspaper.

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#7079932 - 11/16/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: chain]
bea175 Offline
Campfire Oracle

Registered: 02/15/02
Posts: 27819
Loc: Kpt.,TN , Montgomery, Co, VA
Originally Posted By: chain
I have a CVA mountain rifle 54/58 that I got from a member here and I love the rifle but I am having ignition problems with Pyrodex. I leave it outside so not to get condensation but sometimes it just doesn't go off. I am pretty green to these weapons and I welcome all suggestions. Some guys locally have told me to go to regular black powder rather than Pyrodex. Thank you


go to 3F Triple Seven and this will solve your problems if you keep the rifle halve way clean
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#7079992 - 11/16/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: bea175]
Bricktop Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 11/14/05
Posts: 7422
Loc: With your mother.....
Originally Posted By: bea175
Originally Posted By: chain
I have a CVA mountain rifle 54/58 that I got from a member here and I love the rifle but I am having ignition problems with Pyrodex. I leave it outside so not to get condensation but sometimes it just doesn't go off. I am pretty green to these weapons and I welcome all suggestions. Some guys locally have told me to go to regular black powder rather than Pyrodex. Thank you
go to 3F Triple Seven and this will solve your problems if you keep the rifle halve way clean
Uh, no.
_________________________
I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass. And I'm all out of bubblegum.

Originally Posted By safariman
I do tend to fit in well wherever I go in person.

Originally Posted By Fireball2
The campfire is the most outside exposure I get. No TV, no newspaper.

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#7080237 - 11/16/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: Bricktop]
captchee Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 10/13/06
Posts: 1624
Loc: Idaho
If this is an original CVA mountain rifle , then it was made for the most part in the US . Later models are Spanish made starting early on Jukar and then Adesa.
The later guns also will be metric to include the neck of the nipple

Either way I dont believe it will mater if your using T7 or Pyro . The reason is that your running into an issue of ignition temperatures, as brick top mentioned .
Combined with a flash channel design thats long and takes 2, 90 deg turns.

Through the years CVA used 3 different bolsters . Their very early drum bolsters were short necked bolsters . By the late 1970s they went to a medium neck and then a long necked bolster .
What also changed was the flash hole exited from the booster to the main charge .
For some reason some of these long necked bolsters only contain a small slit for the flash to go through . While others have a larger flash channel size hole . Either way your flash is traveling right around of an inch before it reaches the main charge.

Put the modern powders aside and get you some BP .


Edited by captchee (11/16/12)
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#7081187 - 11/16/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: captchee]
chain Offline
Member

Registered: 12/10/07
Posts: 146
I don't understand the two 90's now that you mention it. I will get some BP. Thanks Guys

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#7081287 - 11/16/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: Bricktop]
Raeford Offline
Campfire Tracker

Registered: 01/04/12
Posts: 5490
Loc: Blue Ridge Mtns.
we have two of the older-1st generation inlines from TC[ThunderHawks}. They both have the original #11 nipples. About ten years ago I bought my first and last bottle of pyrodex. Ended up giving it away 3/4 full. That bottle produced the only mis-fires those two guns have ever had and in a consistent manner.
FFg and now F 1/2 G have always worked flawlessly for us.

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#7081764 - 11/16/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: chain]
captchee Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 10/13/06
Posts: 1624
Loc: Idaho
the flash from the cap goes through the nipple . then it turns 90 deg and runs through the drum bolster neck into the barrel . then it must turn 90 deg into the main charge ..

See the bolsters on CVA rifles do not thread into the bore . They thread into the breech .
The face of the breech is counter bored . So what you get is a modified improved breech design that utilizes a drum type bolster vs. a snail type breech .
Here are the three different drum bolsters CVA has used through the years



On the right is an original type drum bolster of the type originally used to convert flintlock to cap lock as well as being common on early original rifles and is still commonly seen today ..
Note that this and the short CVA bolster , screw through the barrel wall . They both set just in front of the breech face and thus Ignite the powder charge from side of the powder column .
Note the medium and long necked bolsters have a hole in the side of the neck . . That hole lines up with a hole in the breech face which then travels to the bore of the rifle and thus the main charge which then gets ignited from the back of the powder column and centered .
So what you end up with is a design like this breech plug from a Pedersoli blue ridge rifle IE the bolsters thread into the plug like the flintlock liner threads into this breech plug


breech plug face


That hole in the neck of these CVA bolsters , sometimes are nothing more then a very small or only a slit . OR the hole is to small and becomes fouled to the point it restricts the ability of a small amount of powder to enter the neck of the bolster .
So as I said before . Instead of the flash simply turning right 90 deg Under the nipple
And igniting powder it must travel down the nick and turn left 90 degs and exit the neck of the bolster and ignite the main charge .
Now add in a powder like T7 or Pyro , which has a higher ignition temp .
The farther away from the cap the flash must travel combined with the more turns it must make , the less heat it carries. Not to mention if your flash channel is restricted by fouling , that restriction will also result in less heat getting to your main charge .

So for the best possible ignition , you need to have a powder that will ignite at a lower temperature OR /and , a clear flash channel that will allow a small amount of powder to end up under the nipple to help boost the flash from the #11 cap , to the main charge .
This is why a previous poster suggested taking out the clean out screw and checking the flash channel . As you can see from the photos of the bolsters , the flash channel is large . its the same diameter as the ID of the threads on the clean out screw .
I would bet that for those here who have posted that they have good luck with T7 or Pyro , its because they that small amount of powder , getting into the flash channel of the drum bolster .


Edited by captchee (11/16/12)
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#7081783 - 11/16/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: captchee]
Brazos Offline
Campfire Regular

Registered: 10/30/04
Posts: 595
Loc: Warshington, Wet Side
Great post cap'n.
Thanks.

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#7081840 - 11/16/12 Re: Ignition Issues [Re: Brazos]
captchee Offline
Campfire Ranger

Registered: 10/13/06
Posts: 1624
Loc: Idaho
OK here is another photo for you . This photo is from a 50 cal CVA mountain rifle barrel that I had out in my shop . The barrel was un usable so I cut the breech off so you can see what the bolster looks like . This barrel is also early enough that it carries the medium sized CVA bolster
This is the hole in the face of the plug that the hole in the neck of the bolster must align to

..
This hole is the same size as the hole in the neck of the bolster . so as you can see if dont have a low temperature powder and /OR this hole and connecting flash channel gets plugged with built up fouling or is restricted , the result is poor ignition consistency .

Now let me show you how easily this fouling can build up and what it looks like .
Please look back at my previous post of the Pedersoli blue ridge breech plug .
That plug came from a flintlock rifle that a person was having ignition problems with .
The rifle was well maintained and looked to properly cleaned on a regular basis ..
However when I pulled the breech plug , this is what I found


But this is what it should have looked like and did once I cleaned the plug out


What you are seeing is carbonized fouling from True black powder which had restricted the flash hole of the flintlock , to the point that even a direct flash from the pan , could not ignite the main charge . Not only was the restriction to the point the powder could not get back to the flash hole . But the flash from a flintlock being less hot then that of a #11 cap , it just didnt have enough to ignite the main charge after making a turn and being restricted .
Anyway , I hope that helps you some


Edited by captchee (11/16/12)
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