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steelslinger 06-10-2012 10:47 AM

CVA Optima
Just got my first modern muzzleloader and wondering what loads others are using. According to the book, the rifle can be loaded with up to 150gr of powder and gives no consideration to bullet weight. I see no way that 2x the charge of an even slower burning powder than what I load in 300wm could come near burning in time. I am not interested in pellets or bp substitutes. For projectiles I am starting with 350gr Hornady FPB. Does anyone here have any experience with a good charge of loose powder and 350gr bullet out of a 26"bbl?

Hunting Man 06-10-2012 08:26 PM

I take it you are using pure black powder then? I use it for flintlocks but Black Horn powder is best for in-line rifles. start at 90 grains (volume) and work up a bit from their noting the rifle's preference at a certain powder charge. Pick the best grouping/load from there.

steelslinger 06-11-2012 10:01 AM

Yes I use real bp. Just "keepin it real" as the kids put it since I have several replica rifles and handguns; I keep several pounds of bp on hand. 90gr sounds reasonable. I shoot 82 out of rifles with longer bbls but they don't have as good of an ignition source. Thanks.

Hunting Man 06-11-2012 06:49 PM

I shoot Goex (spell?) 2f and 3f in my flintlocks because I do like tradition when using them, however, when using an in-line rifle there's no tradition with me so I'm looking for performance only which is what Black Horn powder and quality bullets gives. Just some random thoughts.

steelslinger 06-12-2012 09:16 AM

Good thoughts. I have always laughed at guys who in my opinion stretched the law by using modern bullets, powders, scopes, and primers in "primitive hunting" I do not have any original rifles or handguns but at least they are all replicas. Poor eyesight and hang fires (which cost me several deer over the last few years) caused me to complain about my replica rifles too much I guess. This rifle was an unexpected birthday gift and I guess I have not had time to realize I am now one of the guys I have laughed at. I will get myself some modern powder to go with my modern rifle that loads backwards lol. Thanks

frontiergander 06-14-2012 02:30 PM

Is this the new model optima with finger removable breech plug or the old style that uses a tool?

steelslinger 06-15-2012 04:14 PM

Its the new style

quigleysharps4570 08-13-2012 09:33 AM

I've got an Optima here at the house that was a gift. Don't have much use for the in-lines so it's a loaner. Sighted it in with 80 grs. of 2f Goex and the Lightfield Alpha Gold 300's. That combo has dropped a pile of deer. ;)

fishin2 09-03-2012 01:48 PM

loose powder
Have you fella's that use loose powder, changed your breech plug to a larger hole plug or are you still using the factory breech plug ? Heard with BH 209 powder you should go to a larger fire hole. Thanks, mike

frontiergander 09-03-2012 06:39 PM

using the blackhorn209 plug, you can order from Blackhorn 209 Around $45 with shipping.

midwestprowler 12-09-2012 08:02 PM


Originally Posted by fishin2 (Post 71881)
Have you fella's that use loose powder, changed your breech plug to a larger hole plug or are you still using the factory breech plug ? Heard with BH 209 powder you should go to a larger fire hole. Thanks, mike

You could get the other plug for the extra 45$ or if you can send the gun back for refund & use the extra 45$ to get the TC Omega no firing problems there or Mods needed sub moa right out of the box.

frontiergander 12-10-2012 11:58 AM

bh209 BP is a whole lot better than the omegas. Western powders designed the QRBP BH209 plug with a better flame channel and provides smooth flowing transition point at the flash hole.

frontiergander 12-10-2012 04:46 PM

Whats up with these stalkers anyway? You try helping others out and others attack you for it LOL. Tuff guys always under the unregistered name.

midwestprowler 12-10-2012 11:08 PM

I'm not stalking you. You don't have to leave I just said the omega plug was a good plug for all kinds of powders never had ignition problems. Unregistered am I missing something here :confused: I thought I was already registered I did the sign up thing.

frontiergander 12-10-2012 11:34 PM

well it looks like the mods took care of all of that.

The omega being able to shoot bh209 wasnt planned, as ive said before, no one was ready for bh209 when it hit the market. When bh209 first came out it was supposed to be able to shoot in everything with a 209 primer, any brand of primer and that just wasnt what we got. Certainly not complaining though!

But when the company themselves designs a plug for a certain gun, you know they have done their homework and that is the plug to use. 60* transition taper from flash channel to flash hole creates a smoother operating plug to get the hot gasses into the powder.

midwestprowler 12-11-2012 02:39 AM

The plug is made in Spain for CVA guns due to CVA not willing to change the plugs running & still running plug design that is supplied with the gun. Making another plug to buy is just a way to net even more profits. They do not make a special blackhorn209 plug for the Omega or any TC gun from Western Powders. I cant seem to find Western Powders affiliation with this plugs design or the making of it at all. It looks to be a cva product to me. Purchase CVA Blackpowder and Muzzleloading Products Online

Thompson/Center (T/C) unveils the first muzzleloader to incorporate a common 209 shotgun primer into an inline muzzleloader. This leads T/C to take its Encore rifle and tweak the existing design to become the first 209-primer, break-action muzzleloader. Thompson/Center continues to drive innovation, and, in 2002 The Omega was introduced first drop action inline. They pioneered this stuff others just copied. BH209 was trademarked in 2007 by western powders. It got to shooters hands by march 2008. The Omega got a redesigned plug around 2005 for pellet support & was the test gun for this 209 primer only powder this Co pioneered this 209 breech plug design. I would say it was planned in this case the powder was designed around this companies breech plug design after all they pioneered the design. I will say however I think it was not the intention of Western Powders to make a powder that only TC guns. With a TC designed breech plug could fire reliably. I think they admits to that in some small way as seen here under non compatible plugs or poor design. Ignition Guidelines « Blackhorn 209

You can read more about TC & what they pioneered in the link below. They might not have pioneered blackhorn 209 powder but the powder was made for their guns for sure. It was designed around them mostly the Omega. TC inlines have this same plug design just upgraded a bit like quick release & so on but in a nut shell same plug. Rifle History - Rifle Timeline - Popular Mechanics

frontiergander 12-11-2012 12:06 PM

Western Powders makes the improved bh209 plugs for the cva guns as well, i use them.

midwestprowler 12-11-2012 03:08 PM

What the hell o rings come with the plug really if any primer fits that loose to be able to fit a o ring in there or to need one that's a big design flaw. I have never had blow back issues or need for o rings to make a primer fit with my omega or need to adjust head space for any reason. Trigger come with a light pull crisp n clean. I just don't understand why you would buy a product for less just to turn around & have to pump all this time & money into it to get it right. It should come as promised from the factory light trigger proper head space proper breech plug design so on. In the end after all the stuff you have to do to get the gun working right cost of parts mods adjustments so on. You end up paying double what you would have paid for a TC that out of the box would need no adjustments or mods or after market parts to shoot sub moa. I don't get it but that's just my opinion for the kinda money both cva & tc cost to buy if it don't come to me right I aint gonna keep it. Biggest upgrade I have done to my gun was a scope & sight in no further adjustments were needed. I don't see to many mods done or available to the TC guns. Maybe they don't need em & there is no market or profit in it.

frontiergander 12-11-2012 03:27 PM

CVA, Traditions even the older knights and TC's allow for a wide variety of primers. They dont all come in the same length or width, Some of the encores, omegas can not use certain primers or else the actions will not shut/hammer will not pull back.

If you want to talk about pumping $$ into a product, theres a whole lotta tc encore owners that will show you exactly what big $$ is in order to get their gun to shoot right.

Ive had an omega, it could have used some head spade adjustment with the 777 primers as it was sooty in the action, one reason i sold it, along with a winchester apex. To much trouble to pull apart.

You think TC is the best and I like CVA. No winners or losers, just happy customer with what ever gun we like best.

What kind of groups does your omega shoot? I guess we should make a new topic for this lol.

BruceBruce1959 12-11-2012 06:34 PM


Originally Posted by FrontierGander (Post 74167)
What kind of groups does your omega shoot? I guess we should make a new topic for this lol.

Hey FG, I DO know how the Omega shoots and I DO know how the Optima, the Accura, the Wolf AND the Apex all shoot BUT I GUARANTEE neither of them can match the accuracy of a Traditions Vortek.
The new topic should be, "How come they can't get their Muzzleloaders to shoot as accurate as the Traditions Vortek?" :lol: Now that's a good topic!!!

frontiergander 12-11-2012 08:47 PM

Bruce Did you ever see my report on the Traditions Ultralight LDR? That was a shootin sum....gun... with the 300gr hornady FPB bullets. The only draw back was they were horrible to load.

Hunting Man 12-12-2012 12:55 AM

all the discussions on the different brands, to be quite honest, every one that I have ever own have shot better than I am. Some were sub 1" at 100 yds some were just 1". For production ml'ders off the shelf one cannot expect anymore. I do not own a new CVA in-line but I would expect virtually no difference to the Traditions, and TC rifles I do own. The debate will go on forever but it comes down to one's own preference or budget. I will always lean towards TC products but wouldn't turn down a good buy on CVA, Traditions, or TC rifles. Currently my son has taken a liking to the Tradition's rifle that I bought the son-in-law, who has yet to shoot it. I think he has retired my TC Firehawk. :lol: The Omega and Triumph are hands off for him. I paid $179.00 for that Firehawk brand new many years ago and it will shoot with the best of today's rifles. It has always been a sub 1" shooter @ 100 yds and an easy loader. The Triumph well it loads really tough but shoots and handles well. I put a leupold 3x9x40 on it. It has that perfect feel to it.

BruceBruce1959 12-12-2012 06:04 AM

HM you're absolutely right, most of us, at one time or another have to buy within our budget and we all know you end up getting what you pay for in most cases. :coffee:

midwestprowler 12-15-2012 08:20 PM

FG yeah you should start a new topic for accuracy I plan on making a video of TC groups at range soon as hunting season ends. Groups are same hole with very little staggering up or down sub moa left or right movement. I'll have to get some more speed loaders don't want vid to be to long will be shooting off sandbags may do better in a sled but sub moa is good for me at 100 yards. Gun brands aside that scope you got HM is a dandy I own the same scope it is definitely worth the price. Very clear and tough as nails. I have run mine over by mistake with a truck blown it off the H&R 12 GA Ultralight slug gun. Not heavy barrel soldered on scope rail was still with the scope & prw rings. That gun kicked so hard... I would not recommend that gun never seen a scope rail attached to a barrel in such a way. The scope after all this in my mind is nothing short of amazing still holds zero. I will never need to buy another scope for my muzzleloader or slug gun if i still owned one that is. Lifetime warranty is a big plus very comprehensive also thought I may have to use it a few times but boy was I wrong.

Hunting Man 12-15-2012 08:45 PM

The Omega scope is on par with medium priced leupold scopes. It is a very good scope for a ML rifle.

frontiergander 12-15-2012 11:48 PM

not big on that bdc stuff, often those lines are never on place unless your using those crappy pellets.

Hunting Man 12-16-2012 07:15 AM

I tried pellets years ago and knew the first day they are not for me. The BDC on my cross bow is dead nuts for every 10 yds. With the Nikon bdc and having only used the first two seems pretty accurate also. I can't see me shooting anything beyond 150 yds anyway so for me it works. I may re-consider if setting up a $1000.00 rig but for the average ML hunter, I think the BDC line-up have their place. I still laugh when someone tells me there is no difference between pellets and loose powders like Black Horn and then have them shoot both :lol::lol: that's when they realize there is a whole lot of difference. When my son was shooting pellets at age 14, I had him try loose powder which sent him back to the truck not wanting to shoot anymore. So for youth or those with recoil issues pellets may have a place.

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