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Lubed wads cause 777 to absorb moisture

StradivariusStradivarius Member Posts: 51 ✭✭
Hello again guys [:D] Sweden here again - I have a question about keeping my original 1858 Remington New Model Army loaded in my bedroom for a long time ( say 6 months ) - My problem is this ! For the round .454 ball not to sitt to deep in the cylinder with a max load of 25 to 30 gr Hodgdons 777 i need to use some filling. I have once before used Lubed Wads as filling to avoiding the round ball jump to the barrel. ( I sold that revolver and have just bought another one from here on Gunbroker ).

I have been studying/reading on the internet about long time storage of a BP gun, and some voices say that if one is going to leave the loaded revolver for an extended period of time one should avoid using Lubed Wads becouse the moister in them will get soaked upp by the gunpowder/777. Is the a correct statment ? - Other voices say that one should not use any kind of filler ( was thinking of using " Cornmeal " ). But ! i have to use some kind of filler to avoid the " Jump " from the cylinder to the barrel

Is this tru ? - Will the Hodgdons 777 realy soak up the moisture from a Lubed Wad and make my powder/777 damp ? - If so what would you guys rekomend that i use as a filler for long time storage ?

Thank You in advace for the help/opinion/answer

Sweden [:D]


  • 44caliberkid44caliberkid Member Posts: 925 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    The lube in Wonder Wads is billed as a dry lube, so they might work fine. Personally, I wouldn't worry about the filler and would use 40 grains of real BP. Real BP does not break down with age or long term storage. Some of the substitutes may be more hydroscopic (absorb moisture) than real BP.
    But, your question was about filler, so my second suggestion would be a filler of grits, cornmeal, or Cream of Wheat. Then I would seal the chamber mouth with my homemade summer lube (higher wax content so it doesn't get runny).
    You might experiment, loading a couple chambers with each, then wait six months and shoot them to see what happened. Percussion revolvers have been found fully loaded with only BP and a round ball, that have sat for decades, and still fired when capped and shot.
  • StradivariusStradivarius Member Posts: 51 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Hello 44, and thanks for the tip [:D] - I just looked att the packet of wads i have and they are called " OX - YOKE ORIGINALs WONDER WADS 100 PLUS " - I suppose you mean ALL brands of " Woneder Wads "

    Thanks guys [:D]
  • flyingcollieflyingcollie Member Posts: 197 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    It's well to remember that lubed wads are a newfangled modern-day item when adapted to cap-and-ball revolvers. As the "44cal kid" notes, it's usually best to stick to the original plan when dealing with antiques.
  • GatofeoGatofeo Member Posts: 230 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    The earliest reference I've found to the use of lubricated wads in cap and ball revolvers is in a 1928 American Rifleman magazine I own.
    The late gun writer Elmer Keith made this practice better known when he included it in a chapter on cap and ball revolvers in his 1955 book, Sixguns.
    Though Keith notes that Civil War veterans around Helena, Mont., showed him how to load his original 1851 Navy Colt about 1912, he doesn't say whether they showed him to use lubricated wads.
    To my knowledge, no authenticated Civil War era revolver has ever been found loaded with lubricated wads. Nor is there any mention of the practice in vintage diaries and reports.
    I suspect -- solely my suspicion here -- that it began in the early 1900s when the use of lubricating wads in target rifles of the day became better known.

    The above said, I use wads punched by myself from 1/8" thick hard felt sold by Durofelt of Little Rock, Arkansas. I lubricate wads with a 19th century recipe that I improved upon, and has subsequently been named after me: Gatofeo No. 1 Lubricant.
    I've left wads against powder for months, in revolver chambers, and never experienced any retardation of ignition or burning that I could notice.
    The longest experiment was years ago with my Colt 1851 Navy, loaded with lubricated wads, black powder, .380" ball and capped with Remington nipples that had been squeezed into an elliptical before seating.
    I left the cylinder outdoors, but protected from direct precipitation. After nine months of rain, snow, humidity and temperatures ranging from 10 degrees to 100, I fired the cylinder. No misfires, and no loss of power from contaminated powder that I could detect.
    At the time I didn't own a chronograph. It might have shown some variance I couldn't detect. All bullets hit to the same point of aim as a fresh load.
  • allen griggsallen griggs Member Posts: 35,151 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    I have kept a bp pistol loaded for 4 years and it fired fine, all 5 cylinders. Seemed to have full power.
    This is with black powder and no wads.
    As tight as that ball fits in the cylinder, no way moist air is going to get in there.

    So, stradivarius get some black powder and you will be fine.
  • allen griggsallen griggs Member Posts: 35,151 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Can you get black powder in Sweden?
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