Leaving a muzzleloader loaded between seasons?

Discussion in 'Muzzleloaders' started by predator1, Dec 6, 2009.

  1. predator1

    predator1 10 pointer

    Dec 25, 2008
    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?
  2. browningshutr

    browningshutr 8 pointer

    Apr 18, 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. JDMiller

    JDMiller 12 pointer

    Jun 12, 2005
    " Between the Rivers "
    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 season....no way I would trust it.
  4. deerjw

    deerjw 6 pointer

    Feb 20, 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. Cornmonkey

    Cornmonkey 8 pointer

    May 17, 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. Bentstick

    Bentstick Spike

    Aug 11, 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. trust me

    trust me Troubled Loner

    Nov 27, 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.
  8. mwezell

    mwezell 12 pointer

    Jan 22, 2006
    Auburn, KY
    Why in the world would ANYBODY do that?:confused: Just can't figure it out.:confused:
  9. Walker

    Walker Spike

    Jan 4, 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. turkey

    turkey 10 pointer

    Sep 16, 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.
  11. Cornmonkey

    Cornmonkey 8 pointer

    May 17, 2009
    east ky.
    Best post on this subject i,ve read in a while. A1 on your point's as for the one time i done it, got a call during hunting family emergency someone spent 49 day's in intensive care, the last thing on my mind was the gun. When i found it still loaded the next season, i took stupid advise and lost out. My bad, never again.
  12. I know of two cases where the charge was left in the muzzle loader and then another charge loaded in on top of the old one. Both where discovered before they were fired. One was a beginner the other a experienced hunter. Leaving one loaded is not a good idea from a safety stand point.
  13. Ky_buckhunter

    Ky_buckhunter 6 pointer

    Sep 2, 2007
    I left mine loaded from first muzzleloader season, minus the primer. hunted with it some during modern firearm season as well but never shot it. Still fired like a champ last sunday when i killed a doe at about 75yards
  14. philipfleek

    philipfleek 12 pointer

    Feb 24, 2008
    philville, KY
    I leave mine loaded depending on the weather. Hot and sticky I pull it, good and cold shes charged minus the primer. Loaded it last friday and shot it off today.
    I'm diggity done..
  15. bnt5

    bnt5 8 pointer

    Dec 21, 2004
    Burlington KY
    Good info guys, I always shoot mine off out the passenger window while driving down the highway so I dont spook any deer, I cant imagine what kind of person would leave a load in a blackpowder rifle...remember safety first.

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