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Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Mountain Mans Choice

For economy and effectiveness you can't beat a Patch n Ball 50 cal. Muzzle Loader. (You can also shoot lead bird shot out of a smooth bore muzzle loader similar to a modern shotgun.)

Muzzle loaders were the rifles that that Mountain Men came west with in the early 1800's, and were the weapons of choice before that for hunters and the military. Traditional muzzle loaders that we use now are patterned after the originals ones that survived the ravages of time. As the name implies these rifles are loaded at the muzzle.

To fire, a measurement of black powder is first poured down the barrel. Then a patch is placed over the end of the barrel. A round ball cast of lead in the appropriate caliber is placed on the patch and pushed down into the barrel a couple of inches with a ball starter. A ram rod specific to the rifle is used to seat the patch and ball all the way to the bottom of the barrel tight against the powder previously poured in. A percussion cap is placed over a nipple that is connected to the breech where the powder rests inside of the barrel. The hammer will fall on the cap when the trigger is pulled. The hammer strike ignites the cap which ignites the powder charge which propels the round ball out the barrel at a deadly speed. Now the loading has to happen in that order, powder then patch then ball or the rifle will not fire. It does get messed up sometimes when you are not paying attention.

At Gettysburg many muzzle loaders of fallen soldiers were found with multipal round balls shoved down the barrel with no powder under the first ball. The fog of war? It takes a good 60 seconds or usually longer to reload the rifle and when someone is shooting back who knows.

You can scrounge around and find lead for your round ball ammo. Old lead pipe, roof flashings, etc... Old doors from a hospital x-ray room contains a lot of lead. Scrounge around is the key word here. Get to know your local scrap yard man and you will be set. Tire stores give away lead tire weights or sell them for 10 cents a pound or less. You can buy a mold, then melt your lead and cast all the ammo you need. The Patch is old pillow ticking or you can use store bought round patches. You do need to buy # 11 percussion caps to ignite the powder charge. Now if you really want to get traditional you can shoot with a flint lock muzzle loader in which a piece of flint strikes steel to creates a spark to lite off the charge. I bought my traditional muzzle loader replica at a local rendezvous for $100 bucks. I have seen them at gun shows for $100 dollars.

I use 40 grains of powder to shoot targets and 80 grains when I hunt. The more the powder the more the kick or recoil. 80 grains going off in a 50 cal. is similar to a 12 ga. shotgun recoil. One pound of Elephant brand powder contains 7000 grains of powder and is cheap to purchase. I paid six bucks for my last 1 pound can. I have taken 7 or 8 deer with my present rifle. Each time it took just one shot as that 50 cal. ball has a lot of wallop and knock down power. I do shoot at 50 yard or less when hunting to be sure of my shot. With the buckhorn open iron sights I can hit a 20 lb propane bottle at 100 yards - sometimes.

Anybody interested in Black Powder shooting should contact their local Muzzle Loading club. Folks these family friendly clubs are all over the Country. They hold club shoots and rendezvous throughout the year. These guys n gals are preppers and don't even know it. They wear homemade period clothing, they jerk venison and other wild game, they camp and cook without any of the modern conveniences. They take pride in everything and anything handmade. Weekend camps and rendezvous are full of tipi's, pyramid tents, campfires, fire pit cooking, hawk and knife competitions, target shooting, traders, and all kinds of fun.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Staying Warm

On a cold winter night you just can’t beat the heat from a wood fire. It’s a different kind of warm. It seems like it penetrates clear down to the bone. And then you have that glow of satisfaction because you are not paying some utility company top dollar for that warmth. It gives you a sense of independence. If you do your own cutting you can have a deep down good feeling knowing that you cut and split that fire wood yourself. Having 10 cord or more of wood stacked outside the house gives you that I am prepared for winter weather feeling.

I have heated my home with wood for many years. I will be the first to admit it is hard work, but for me it is worth every bit of it. Our first stove was an old #9 pot bellied antique. It had a small fire door and we had to feed the stove several times per night. That left you pretty tired in the morning. One day I got a 55 gal steel drum and a stove kit and set up a barrel stove in the house. My wife threw a fit and told me to get that ugly thing out of the house. I got her to agree to a 2 week trial period. After two weeks the stove stayed because it performed so well. We could heat the whole house with it and could load it up to last all night long.

It probably depends where you live but out here in rural Nebraska you can get all the wood you want for the asking. I look for wood that is dense and has a high btu value so it will burn a long time in the stove. Around here that would be oak, ash, mulberry, hackberry, locust. Most farmers are receptive to letting you clean up an older shelter belt or tree grove. Logs from green trees need to dry for at least a year. Wood from standing dead trees can be burned as soon as you cut and split it. Even logs laying on the ground are good for immediate burning if they are not punky and rotten.

A pickup, chainsaw, and splitting maul are minimum equipment to getting your own firewood supply. So much the better if you have a log splitter. Some folks for various reasons decide to just buy their firewood from the local firewood business. Being a seller of firewood myself I would advise that barter would work here. You could take your special skills, knowledge and abilities and make a trade for your firewood needs

Monday, February 16, 2009



Alert from Nebraska Firearm Owners Association

This is for those that shoot at a established shooting range in Nebraska. Reloaders like to check several different loads before loading up multipal rounds. This Bill LB 503 might keep your local range open.

You can help preserve your place to shoot in the future

This is a call for ACTION. You probably know that we have been working for several years now to obtain a state law that might protect shooting ranges from nuisance law suits. Only Hawaii, Washington State and Nebraska have no such law. I am confident that we are getting closer. LB-503 introduced by Langemeier is our bill this year. It was written with the help of NRA attorneys and language of several other states.

The first step is to get it through a committee hearing and out to the floor for debate and passage. It is now scheduled for hearing next Friday afternoon by the Government Military and Veterans Affairs committee February 20 at 1:30 PM in room 1507 of the capital. Be there if you want to help . You may speak if you wish but just your presence will be good and you can sign a check in sheet when you arrive as a supporter.


Members of the Government, Military and Veterans Affairs.

Senator Bill Avery (C) bavery@leg.ne.gov District 28

Senator Pete Pirsch (VC) ppirsch@leg.ne.gov District 4

Senator Robert Giese bgiese@leg.ne.gov District 17

Senator Charlie Janssen cjanssen@leg.ne.gov District 15

Senator Russ Karpisek rkarpisek@leg.ne.gov District 32

Senator Rich Pahls rpahls@leg.ne.gov District 31

Senator Scott Price sprice@leg.ne.gov District 3

Senator Kate Sullivan ksullivan@leg.ne.gov District 41

Only Senator Avery serves a Lincoln District but any notes to the others can be counted as positive for our cause. You only need a sentence or two to get the point across.

If we can get it out of committee, then will be the time to contact your personal representative.

LB503 will provide;

-grandfather protection for ranges that exist today from new zoning ordinances

-disallow any city or county form enacting rules regulating firearm discharges

-provide that existing ranges may repair, remodel, reconstruct and improve ranges if needed.

-allow a city, county etc. to limit hours of operation between 10 pm and 7 am

-harmonizes this law with several existing laws

You may read it by going to the UNICAMERAL website at www.nebraskalegislature.gov/bills and looking up LB503. The first five pages are the meat of it.

If you have any questions , please call me and I will try to help. This may be our only chance now for a few years, but with Senator Chambers out, it just might get through the process.

THANK YOU for helping yourselves. Wes Sheets,, Lincoln Chapter Secretary 466-9040

Friday, February 13, 2009

Thomas Jefferson - Words of Wisdom

1. When we get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, we shall become as corrupt as
Europe. Thomas Jefferson

2. The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not. Thomas Jefferson

3. It is incumbent on every generation to pay its own debts as it goes. A principle which if acted on would save one-half the wars of the world. Thomas Jefferson

4. I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them. Thomas Jefferson

5. My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government. Thomas Jefferson

6. No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. Thomas Jefferson

7. The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.
Thomas Jefferson

8. The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. Thomas Jefferson

9. To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical. Thomas Jefferson

And One Very Interesting Quote

In light of the present financial crisis, it's interesting to read what Thomas Jefferson said in 1802:

'I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around the banks will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.



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Nebraska Preppers Network Est. Jan 17, 2009 All contributed articles owned and protected by their respective authors and protected by their copyright. Nebraska Preppers Network is a trademark protected by American Preppers Network Inc. All rights reserved. No content or articles may be reproduced without explicit written permission.