My Own Black Powder Tips and Tricks
- The Ruger Old Army
The best combination I have found for the Ruger Old Army is 30 grains of Pyrodex P, RWS caps (they are actually an 11-1/2), a Wonder Wad and Crisco over the ball. I have not had a misfire with this group of components, and clean up is a breeze.
- Home Clean Up
When I clean up at home, I've found that extremely hot tap water is your best bet. Remove the grips and disassemble the cylinder. Soak the cylinder, nipples and loading bar mechanism in hot soapy water. I use whatever dish detergent is on the kitchen sink. While holding the frame with a pot holder, run the hot tap water over the frame and down the barrel, anywhere there is residue, being careful to keep water out of the action. Scrub all surfaces and down the barrel with a nylon brush (I liberated a bore brush from my Glock). Rinse with hot tap water. The hot tap water will get the frame hot enough to evaporate moisture fairly well. Scrub and rinse the other parts the same way. Use alcohol on a swab to wick away any remaining moisture in hard to get at places. Spray WD-40 in the action, and work it a few times, being careful not to get any oil in the barrel. Coat everything except the barrel and chambers with oil and put away unassembled until the next use.
- Clean Up at a Multi-Day Shoot
The best thing to bring on a multi-day shoot, when cleaning facilities for your black powder guns are not available, is a spray bottle of Windex with amonia. I've used this while camping, when running water wasn't even available. Soak a patch with the Windex and run it down the barrel. Do this as many times as necessary, and clean with a dry patch. Spray down the outside of the gun on any surface that has residue, and clean up with a dry cloth. Add a little oil to the bearing surfaces and you should be all set.