Black powder cartridge fillers

Discussion in 'Shooting, Hunting and Fishing' started by harrymac, Jun 10, 2009.

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  1. Hello all, I've been a member of ARRSE for some time, but didn't realise there was a shooting forum. Biff. I've got a Martini Henry in 577-450 and I use it with pyrodex loads with an oatmeal filler. I've been advised that this is unsuitable (even though I've had no probs with it for about 4 years) and that using oatmeal is liable to cause a ring bulge in the chamber. What do other forum users use for their filler. I'm reluctant to use cotton wool because of possible fire risks on grass ranges during the summer.
  2. Be a man and fill up to the case neck! Joking aside, I top up with polenta for my carbine which is similar in grain size and shape to the powder and very very dry with no problems. The risk of clumping seems to be with fine fillers liable to absorb moisture (like wheat produce).

    Another trick used down under is to use untreated wool (plentiful supply :D ), the lanolin in the wool acts as an effective fire retardent.
  3. German shooters use semolina as a filler. Seems to work fine.
  4. The thing that seems to excite the people who have warned me against it is that while granular fillers are ok in straight walled case, the MH round has a severe bottle neck, and as CM mentioned this apparently causes the filler to "clump". Wouldn't semolina or polenta just do the same?
  5. In the US "cream of wheat" is a popular filler which I believe is very fine bordering on flour and does clump. The other trick with comparatively coarse fillers like polenta/couscous (popular in France)/semolina is to mix it in with the powder, bulking it out. It has actually been found that this happens naturally if cartridges are left for a long long time. If your powder to filler ratio is high it will not affect iginition/burn.
  6. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    Someone I know used dacron which is a cushion filler, bonus is its flame retardent. Not my field mind but I do have some manuals kicking round so if sober I may look it up!
  7. There is a specialist inert filler for this very purpose.

    Cannot remember the product name apart from the fact it struck me as being really stupid!
  8. We always used to use Persil (Non biological of course)

    Mind you we did have one guy who filled his .38 Specials with glitter for the Christams Shoot one year. Mind you he was an ex-ATO, and he's still doing disposal in sandy places. Got an OBE for it last year.
  9. That would be Puff-Lon perhaps? :p
  10. Just recently I read in a German magazine (Visier) they used coffee grounds! as a filler in BP revolvers. Might just work for BP cartridges as well. At least you would end up with the smell of coffee and old sewers. :D
  11. Class LOL.

    GASP...Just...been ....shot ...Tinkerbell.