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Old 09-06-2021, 11:33 AM
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BB57 BB57 is offline
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The ignorance in this thread is epic.

Before the advent of the cartridge, pretty much every non military shooter “hand loaded”. Military shooters used factory made paper cartridges that they bite the end of the cartridge, put a small amount of powder in the pan to prime, pot the rest down the musket or rifled musket bore and then follow it with the ball and paper wad, or minke ball and ram it home.

Loading got slightly slower with the percussion cap as rather than a flick of the risk, it required fiddling with the cap.

Cap and ball revolvers were similar but were obviously percussion and the charge was in a paper cartridge glued to the back of the ball or conical projectile, which burst as it was seated and was normally nitrated paper anyway.

Once the cartridge came along reloading was not much more complicated. You could, and still can store bullets primers and powder in less space for less weight than you can loaded cartridges. If you had 50 black powder cartridges that was a lot and as straight walled or mildly bottle necked low pressure cartridges they’d basically last forever.

Back when I shot BPCR out west I used the same 100 .45-70 black powder cartridges for about 15 years and never worse one out. They got an occasional wash in soap and water and were loaded with a hand tool. Powder was loaded by volume, not weight so no scale required and all of my loading was done with a hand tool.

In short, a fair amount of powder, lead and primers could be carried in a saddle bag along with a tong type hand tool, a bullet mold and small pot and dipper to run lead with. The shooter then didn’t have to worry about the next down having his particular cartridge, just powder, primers, and enough lead to replace what he didn’t recover from game animals.
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