Wolfe Publishing Group

    The Black Powder Cartridge News Spring 2023

    On the Cover: Our cover for this issue comes to us compliments of Chris Fantini and it shows a rare bird, indeed. The Springfield 1881 Long-Range rifle was made by Springfield in very limited numbers and the survival rate has not been good. Chris’ rifle is in virtually new condition and is extremely interesting from many points, not the least of which is the opportunity to look at an uncompromised .45-80-2.4 Long-Range rifle. My bet is that most of us will never see one in the flesh. Chris puts his Springfield through the paces and the story is extremely interesting. Be sure to check out his feature story in this issue and see if you don’t agree with us.

    Volume , Number | ISSN:

    Article Bites


    From the Editor

    We Must All Hang Together…
    column by: Steve Garbe

    According to most sources, at the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Benjamin Franklin uttered the words “We must, indeed, all hang together or, most assuredly we shall all hang separately.” This practical piece of advice had been around for some years before Franklin quoted it, but at the time of the signing it summed up his best thoughts on how the colonies could pull off actually declaring independence from the world superpower, England. It made good sense then and, given the nature of the assault today on many of those freedoms that the signers of the Declaration fought for, it makes even more sense now. ...Read More >


    About the Cover

    column by: Steve Garbe

    Our cover for this issue comes to us compliments of Chris Fantini and it shows a rare bird, indeed. The Springfield 1881 Long-Range rifle was made by Springfield in very limited numbers and the survival rate has not been good. ...Read More >


    Letters from Readers

    Black Powder Primers?
    column by: Steve Garbe

    I have been a subscriber of the Black Powder Cartridge News for many years. I do appreciate the magazine for its content, not only about the historical articles, but about the black powder related firearms, as well information about reloading . . . So, my question is, what primer was used in those days and what substitutes are there for these primers today? ...Read More >


    Product Reviews

    Swazi’s Windriver Outdoor Jacket / Scope Model Chambering Cam
    column by: Steve Garbe / Mike Nesbitt

    There is a lot of truth in the old saying, “There’s no bad weather, just bad clothes.” If you have spent any time at all outdoors, you surely know that nothing is more miserable than being cold and wet. Plus, being miserable can quickly turn to deadly if the weather takes a serious turn for the worse. Good outdoor clothing is probably the cheapest and best insurance one can buy when engaged in any serious outdoor pursuit. ...Read More >


    The Wyoming Schuetzen Union’s “Center Shot”

    Wartime Cartridge Cases
    column by: Jim Foral

    The United States entrance into the European War in April 1917, called for a number of urgent armament imperatives to be attended to. A good case in point was the adoption of the makeshift 1917 Enfield rifle, a necessary expedient born of the overseas hostilities. Amassing an immense supply of small arms ammunition was also on a long list of things to get done immediately. ...Read More >


    Rifle Clubs

    column by: Staff

    Alaska: Alaska Rifle Club: Contact Somerset Jones at 907-688-6892 or cid1893@mtaonline.net Arizona: • Phoenix, Ben Avery Shooting Facility: Contact George Taylor at lhepburn@outlook.com NRA: Contact Tim Thorne at 240-994-3434 or timnorithorne@msn.com AZWINS: Contact George Taylor at lhepburn@outlook.com •Tucson Tucson Rifle Club: Contact Ron Calderone at 520-885-0764 or grandslamronbo@msn.com Arkansas •Jacksonville Benton Rifle Club: Contact Harlan Glover at 501-607-4341 ...Read More >


    The Springfield Long-Range Rifle

    feature by: Chris Fantini

    Most of us who shoot black-powder cartridge rifles are familiar with the Creedmoor long-range rifle matches of the 1870s. This was initially a civilian activity with rifles provided by the Sharps and Remington companies. The army eventually wanted to get into the game and began experimentation to determine the necessary modifications to the standard service rifle to make it competitive out to 1,000 yards. The rifle in the accompanying photos is the result of several years of the army’s effort to produce a long-range target rifle. ...Read More >


    Accuracy Test - Part VIII

    The Smith Carbine
    feature by: William P. Mapoles

    Are there times when you just don’t feel like spending a lot of long hours at the reloading bench? Are there days when you are just too busy to reload some brass for the weekend? If so, here is a slick little breechloader to check out – the Smith carbine. A handloader can load a batch of cartridges for it in less than 20 minutes, or simply load them at the range. No reloading tools are required, except for a simple powder measure, and no great degree of precision is required to make accurate ammunition for it. The inherent accuracy is the remarkable thing about the Smith carbine that seems to defy logic. That is also the reason it has become a favorite of the North-South Skirmish Association and many other gun nuts like me. ...Read More >


    The North-West Mounted Police Mills Belt

    feature by: Matt Dedrick

    One of the rarest North-West Mounted Police (NWMP) artifacts must be the woven cotton “Mills” pattern cartridge belts ordered in 1883, from the T.C. Orndorff Company of Worchester, Massachusetts. Though issued to the force for its Model 1876 Winchester carbines and the .476-caliber Enfield revolvers, no single documented specimen has been found. 1 & 3 While the NWMP Mills belt does appear in photographs of the period as being used by the NWMP, none have been located and not even the brass belt plates have been found. ...Read More >


    10-Gauge Black Powder Shotshell Reloading

    feature by: Lon Morris

    Being somewhat taken aback, I have had several readers of the Black Powder Cartridge News (BPCN) give me quite positive feedback on my recent “Letter to the Editor” concerning the carrying of a hammer shotgun cocked with the breech open. Additionally, the staff at BPCN asked me to write an article explaining my technique for loading brass shotgun shells for my old Parker gun. ...Read More >


    One Shot with Old Powder

    feature by: Mike Nesbitt

    After getting the old .44-77 cartridge restored and reassembled (as talked about in “Dissecting a .44-77” in the Black Powder Cartridge News, No. 119 Fall 2022) I got to wondering what kind of velocity that old 77-grain charge of powder would give a 405-grain .44-caliber bullet. To find out, I could try shooting the old round, but that would leave me without an old .44-77 cartridge and more than likely, the primer had lost its punch. The characteristics of the cartridge, such as no headstamp, suggested it was from the 1870s. So, a way to save the cartridge, but use the powder was considered. I could pull the bullet and pour out the powder, to use it in another case, while fresh powder was put into the old case to be “capped” with the bullet again, giving me the chance to try the old powder and keep the collectable cartridge too. ...Read More >


    James R. Mead’s Buffalo Hunt

    October 1860
    feature by: Leo J. Remiger

    James Richard Mead was born in New Haven, Vermont, on May 3, 1836. While a young child, he moved with his parents to the Territory of Iowa, near the present day city of Davenport. In the spring of 1859, along with several young men of his neighborhood, J.R. Mead, with a fine riding horse, two of the best rifles that he could afford and a few dollars in his pocket embarked overland to Kansas. After crossing the Missouri River at Weston, they visited Leavenworth, Lawrence, Lecompton, Tecumseh and finally, Topeka. ...Read More >


    SK Long Range

    A New Long-Range .22 Rimfire Ammunition
    feature by: Steve Garbe

    Saying “long-range” and “.22 rimfire” in the same sentence sounds a bit contradictory until one considers that many, truly long-range shooters compare shooting a rimfire at 200 yards to shooting a centerfire at 800. Stretch the .22 distance to 300 and it’s thought by some to be great practice for centerfire at 1,000. This is not to ignore the hottest shooting discipline in the single-shot world, .22 BPCR Silhouette, which is shot at distances from 50 to 200 meters. ...Read More >

    Wolfe Publishing Group