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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2008

    Default Leaving a muzzleloader loaded between seasons?

    I over heard 2 guys talking the other day about leaving their guns loaded between seasons provided the gun was clean when it was loaded. They said they always shoot it before the first muzzleloading season to make sure they are still sighted in, clean them, then load them up for the hunt. Then if they never shoot during the first season they just leave it loaded for the second season(minus the primer). I don't think this would damage the gun, but it definately sounds like it's asking for an accident. Anyone else ever do this?
    "Now if we could just convince the government to open season on buzzards, hawks and illegal mexicans, Our country would be a better more fun place." skin_dog1

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Northern Ky


    I don't do this with mine. I used mine last week for the OH gun season and just yesterday I pulled the breech plug and pushed the load out. I don't like the thought of that powder staying in there for a few weeks, and then when I have the crosshairs on a booner, it won't fire because of some condensation or some other unknown reason. It is also a good safety practice to unload it when not in use.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    " Ky's West Island "


    Something as simple as hunting all day in the cold.... then putting the muzzleloader in the cab of a warm truck will cause condensation to form inside the barrel. Combine this with the moisture wicking abillity blackpowder or substitutes.... your asking for corrosion to leave one loaded...even for a weekend.

    With the majority of us hunting with in-lines.... not a real excuse to not unscrew the breech... dump the pellets or powder...and push the bullet out the barrel. When I hunted with a caplock... always hated to do it because of the pyrodex odor... but always fired it off at the end of the day. I was just too anal about wanting to be sure it would fire. From one day to the next... and definitely between early & late muzzleloader way I would trust it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Henderson, KY


    I hate to admit it, but I left my muzzleloader loaded from last year to the early season this year. I had trail camera pics of a nice 10 pointer and was afraid of taking a chance on it not firing so I set up a target to see if it would go off. There was no hesitation and I made a perfect shot at 100 yards. I wouldn't recommend leaving one loaded, but I didn't have any ill effects even after a whole year.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    east ky.


    NO! NO! NO! Can ya hear me, really bad idea. I done it once, that cost me the largest rack i,ve ever seen hunting. If ya want this wonderful experince, by all means go ahead.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Over Yonder


    I left my flintlok loaded season to season and never had a problem. However I did have a friend who asked to let him take my gun and go over it and clean it up . It is a kit gun I had gotten one year for Christmas as a teenager so it's not the most beautiful gun you'll ever see. Anyhow the guy takes it home and sets it in the corner as he goes through the door into his house. I told him that before he does anything with it to make sure it's not still loaded even though the flash pan is empty. So he's home and his dad, sister, and himself are eating supper and watching tv and in comes his brother. His brother comes through the door says" what's this" picking up my rifle. He pulls it to his shoulder points and aims through the storm door outside, pulls the hammer back and pulls the trigger. Although there's no powder in the pan the gun still fires blowing out the glass from the storm door, the ball hits the garage roof and rips up a few shingles, and the house is full of black powder smoke!! My friend said no one made a move or could say a word. I laugh everytime I think about it. They had to clean the entire house to get the smell out!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Jerkwater, KY


    Would you leave your 30-06 in the closet all year with a round in the chamber? If not, then why would you leave a loaded muzzleloader lying around? You're just asking for tragedy.

    Good grief people, it's not that big of a deal to pull a bullet or just fire the thing and clean it.
    'But I would rather have it bent and dull and know I had to put it on the grindstone again and hammer it into shape and put a whetstone to it, and know that I had something to write about, than to have it bright and shining and nothing to say, or smooth and well-oiled in the closet, but unused.
    E. Hemingway

    You know, if you put spaghetti sauce on your ramen noodles, it tastes just like broken dreams and disappointment.
    My college son

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Auburn, KY


    Why in the world would ANYBODY do that? Just can't figure it out.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Bowling Green, KY.


    By Randy Wakeman

    This question rears its ugly head several times a year. Well, you "can" of course leave your muzzleloader loaded for as long as you want, and you are the one that is responsible if you do so. Shooting it out at the end of the day is always best, but those that plead "but do I have to?" likely will not be satisfied. Of course you don't have to. You don't ever "have" to change the oil in your car, either, and you don't have to add salt to your water softener, either. You are far better off if you do, of course, for many reasons.

    Blackpowder is hygroscopic even in its unfired state. That is not speculation, it is well-established: Black powder absorbs about 1.5 weight percent moisture under 75 percent relative humidity at a temperature of 21.1.degrees C. (70.degrees F.) over a period of 24 hours. If black powder picks up sufficient moisture, there is a possibility that the black powder will not burn as fast. High relative humidity may cause erratic behavior. Water may cause the potassium nitrate to migrate out of the black powder and cause corrosion of metallic parts.

    That refers only to black powder, a mixture of three components, not a compound. Synthetic substitutes marketed as "black powder" substitutes are generally worse. If it cleans up with "regular tap water" it is naturally water-soluble. Anything that uses a sugar-base (American Pioneer, Pinnacle, Black Mag3 in the ascorbic acid department, and Triple Se7en in the gluconic acid department) will soak up moisture. The resultant erratic velocities or misfires are contingent on a host of variables: humidity, temperature, ignition type, specific rifle, etc. A loaded muzzleloader well might go bang the next day, or the next year for that matter. Or it may not.

    Open packs of pellets, or opened jugs of powder lose their potency over time. On a very humid day, you can see the loose powder start to clump in particularly in the case of American Pioneer, and even Triple Se7en if you give it enough time. No one would think of storing powder with the cap off; at least I hope not. American Pioneer / Shockey's Gold are so bad at sucking moisture that desiccant packets are included in the jug. The diminishing performance is something you can readily see if you shoot through a chronograph. Most don't bother; back to the ignorance is bliss department. There is no benefit to leaving a muzzleloader loaded, except for those that are too lazy to handle their firearms properly.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2008


    Real simple...practice gun safety and it will answer the question for you...

    Then again to each their own...mine gets cleaned, cleaned, and cleaned before putting it up because not matter what brand gun you have it is unprotective powder that can draw moisture and cause rust and build up issues...I use to shot my old side hammer off at the truck after each hunt. Now with an inline I unload it a little different...remove the bp and push it out. Save the bullet ditch the load...Up keep and care is key to a long productive life of any ML weapon...TC-CVA...its part of the game.

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