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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I came across an Interarms .54 caliber Hawkins at a price I couldn’t pass up. This is my first “traditional” muzzleloader and I have no idea where to start as far as finding out what powder/ bullet combo this thing may like. Can anyone give me a recommendation on where to start?
 

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It's "Hawken", not Hawkins. Hawkins is a character in the Robert Louis Stevens novel, "Treasure Island". Samuel and Jacob Hawken developed the rifle that carries their name around 1830, from their shop in St. Louis.

If it's a round ball twist, for hunting anything from 70 to 100 grs. of Ffg under a .530 ball with approximately a .015 to .020 cotton or linen patch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Please excuse my mistake.

Thank you for the recommendation, it gives me a good starting point.
 

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Sharps 4590 gives good advice. Get yourself some reading material to get started. Sharps didn't mention you will need to lube the patch at loading. Spit works. Clean it The same day you shoot it. Cleaning procedures are not the same as smokeless powder
Have fun but be warned. Get black powder smoke up your nose, just once, and you will be addicted.

ETA: Went back and read your original post. I see you are not new to BP. Enjoy your new side hammer. Mule
 

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Not a problem Sup. I don't know how or where the "Hawkins" thing got started but it's well established. Back when I started shooting muzzleloaders in the early 70's you never heard or read "Hawkins". Everyone evidently knew it was "Hawken".

Couple other things; Never use synthetics for a patch, I've never seen them work well and the right...or wrong ones...can melt in the barrel and make for a mess. Cotton in the form of pillow ticking, cheap by the yard at any fabric outlet, including wallyworld, is most commonly used, or used to be. Wash it to remove the sizing. I mentioned linen and it's the best but pricey. Pre-lubed patches can be bought but I've cut them at the muzzle for 45 years.

I never shoot anything but real black powder but it is supposedly getting hard to come by...though I never seem to have a problem getting it. 'Course I used to buy it by the 25 lb. case....I used to shoot a lot of it in muzzleloaders and BP cartridge rifles. Anyway, if you shoot real black, don't use a petroleum based lube for the patch or to protect the inside of the barrel. Black and petroleum products don't play nice together. Can't tell you a thing about the wanna be black powders except Pyrodex. I hate it. I shoot mostly flintlocks and not only will it not ignite in a flintlock, it's more corrosive and rusts quicker than black, in my experience. Hateful stuff in my book.

#11 caps should be what you want for that rifle.

Real muzzleloaders are a lot of fun and, within their range limitations are as effective as anything else. The lowly patched round ball kills all out of proportion to its paper ballistics....and you got the best caliber as far as I'm concerned. I've killed deer and hogs with the 45, 50 and 54 caliber muzzleloaders. The 54 has been my pick for 30 years, unless I wanted to try a new rifle and that's occurred a couple times.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the advise. I’m not completely green to muzzleloading, I shoot an inline but this will be my first patch and ball. I figured I would try true black powder on this rifle. My main concern was how much powder and grain size.
 
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