We're not singing off the same page of the hymm book here, talking apples and oranges so to speak. MikeC's question and the subject of this thread is loading for TDs. He saked; "From reading the posts here it seems to me that the cartridge loading of black powder is a lot more problematic than muzzle loading, there is much talk of powder fouling and blowing down the barrel, humidity ect.
My question is: What would be a good powder type and charge, how much compression is desireable and should I use an over powder wad?
Also I hand lubed the 410gr. HB Lee bullets with SPG."
I have been referencing my answers to that and what it really takes to make TDs shoot well and what's not required. Interesting to note that Frankford and Springfield arsenals did quite a bit of experimenting with shooting TDs (not too hard to figure) They developed very accurate loads for their soldiers that were very competitive in the matches of the day, probably would be today also. Wolf duplicated these loads quite well in his bbok, I merely refined his technique for match purposes.
The loads the the arsenals developed did not require the use of a blow tube under any circumstances. Blow tubes are used today, also yesteryear, for the express purpose of keeping the fouling in the lead of the throat soft so a tight fitting bullet may be chambered after several rounds are fired. Many actions do not provide any camming to the cartridge when the breech is closed. Thus the need for the shooter to be able to push the cartridge all the way in during chambering. The arsenal designed bullets and camming ability of the TD negates the use or need of a blow tube. The use of a simple effective lube such as SPG or Wolf's beeswax/olive oil lube provides soft fouling anyway even in dry arid locations. I ran several test with and without the use of a blow tube and found no gain whatsoever in TDs with the use of one. Some claim the use of heavy breathing through the tube is more accurate and there is some belief that is the case with some rifles. Have yet to see it with TDs. Yes, I know most use a tube but I think many do because THINK they need too because some "expert" told them to, not becuase they've proven they do need to. But most use them so they can chamber rounds in foulded chamber/bores. Again, that's not needed with TDs.
Another such bit of BP folklore (withcraft) is that there absolutely must NEVER be any airspace between the powder and the bullet base in BP loads. This is coming into question and disproven by such notables as Steve Garbe, I'm sure you've heard of him.
MikeC's Lee bullet is Lee's very close copy of the 1873 service bullet. Wolf recommends it as do I for use in TDs. MikeC is hand lubing unsized bullets and I'll bet they are are between .462 and .466 diameter. Every lee 405HB mould I've used has cast in that range depending on alloy. He will find good accuracy with Wolfs recommended loads and loading proceedure which does not recommend the use of a wad.
My advice for best accuracy with this bullet is to use 70 gr of Goex Cartridge (He may want ot experiment between 60 and 70 gr of powder)
compressed just to the base of the bullet. This depth is determined by seating a bullet so 1/3 of the driving band is engraved by the rifling when the breech block is closed camming the bullet into the rifling. Cases should be neck sized (the new Lyman NS die works very well for this) and an expander used that leaves about .003 tension on the bullets. The case mouth flair should be straightened out (no crimp needed) or even left flaired so as to further seal the chamber. The camming action of closing the breech block does this with little additional effort. He will be able to fire this load through a "string" without the lube/fouling getting hard and blowing through a blow tube will not increase his accuracy. It will just succeed in making him breath harder and get his heart pumping faster for the next shot.
BTW; most of Washington and Oregon for that matter are not the "wet humid rain forrest envirnment " most think. The larger eastern parts of each state can get quite hot and arid with very low hunidity. I have been to Raton and it is not very dissimular to many parts of eastern Oregon where I am really from and have done most of my shooting. You know what they say about "assume", one shouldn't.
I would really love to make the Quigley and the nationals at Raton, perhaps in a few years when I retire or if other shooting interests slack off. Maybe sooner, who knows?
LMG--I read your post with a lot of curiosity and interest. I certainly agree that there are a lot of contorted and whacky methods employed in loading BPCR ammo by some people. None that I know that take this approach have a great deal of success other than their own amusement, to my knowledge.
However, there are some really accurate load and rifle combinations in the BPCR Silhouette game, and I don't know of a single person that competes on a regular basis that doesn't use a blow tube. It is not unusual to shoot in 100 to 105 degree temperature and humidity of less than 10 percent in some areas of Texas, Oklahoma , New Mexico, etc. You might get away with not using a blow tube in Washington State, but I don't think you could at Raton.
A really neat rifle match, maybe the most fun match of the year is the Quigley shoot in Forsyth, Montana. It is held every Father's Day, and attracted over 400 participants last year. They have a Trapdoor class, and are always happy to see a really good Trapdoor show up. We drove 1700 miles one way last year to attend, and since the move, that has been shortened to 1500 miles one way. We wouldn't miss it, and in fact already have our motel reservations for this year's match. You really should try to make it. Quigley is a gong shoot, not a silhouette match, but there are some good rifles there, and some men who know how to shoot them. There are a lot of Sharps up there. You ought to bring your Trapdoor and see how it stacks up. Shoot straight, rdnck.