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Author Topic: Recommended loads for hunting elk with a .54 Lyman Deerstalker  (Read 4012 times)

Offline hunter_sean08

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Hey everyone. My dad and I decided to switch from modern firearm to muzzleloading for elk this season. My dad uses a Lyman Great Plains rifle, whereas I'm using the Lyman Deerstalker .54 caliber. I've read somewhere that FFg is the suggested powder to use for a .54, but I've also heard that FFFg works just fine as well. I'm just wondering what a good bullet to shoot would be. Right now I have some Hornady 425 gr. HB-HP bullets and some CVA 375 gr. Deerslayer bullets. I have Goex FFg and FFFg in my muzzleloading box as well (my grandpa passed his Lyman and all of his gear down to me). Also, if there is a specific bullet that would be good for hunting OlyPen elk, I would like to know how much powder to use.

Thanks

Offline carpsniperg2

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Re: Recommended loads for hunting elk with a .54 Lyman Deerstalker
« Reply #1 on: August 29, 2010, 01:37:12 PM »
welcome to the site. ffg or fffg is all fine for your guns. the burn rate will be a bit quicker with the fffg is about it. for lead bullets i really like dead center bullets. they have been nothing but great for me. i shot the barnes tmz's last year. might again this year. as far as charge amount goes, you will have to play around and see what charge shoots best with your guns. 90 grains is a good starting place.
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Offline bobcat

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Re: Recommended loads for hunting elk with a .54 Lyman Deerstalker
« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2010, 08:26:31 AM »
Is your Deerstalker the stainless or blued model? The stainless version has the same 1 in 48 twist, but it has shallower grooves, which according to Lyman is better for shooting conical and saboted bullets.

I have the stainless Deerstalker in 54 caliber. I can't really tell you what works best in it yet, as I have not done enough testing with different powder and bullets. Right now I am using 2F Triple 7 with a 330 grain Harvester hard cast saboted bullet. I got acceptable accuracy out to 100 yards with 95 grains of powder.

When time and money allow, I will be doing more testing with different powder (Pyrodex, 3F Triple 7) and I would like to try the 325 grain Barnes Expander bullet.

But for now, with deer season beginning in less than 4 weeks, I probably will not change anything. I would rather spend my time scouting rather than shooting. I think either of the bullets you already have would be good as long as they are accurate in your rifle. That Hornady 425 grain would really work well on elk. I would start with 80 grains of powder with that heavy bullet and work your way up to no more than 100. Good luck and welcome to the forum. I'd definitley be curious to hear what you end up shooting.

Offline hunter_sean08

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Re: Recommended loads for hunting elk with a .54 Lyman Deerstalker
« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2010, 04:44:56 PM »
Is your Deerstalker the stainless or blued model?

My Deerstalker is blued. My grandpa bought the gun back in the mid-90's before stainless was really popular. Yeah thanks for the input. I was thinking the Hornady would work well too. I was just wondering because this will be my first year of muzzleloading. My dad used to do it every year before WDFW changed the seasons in the late 90's to only a week long and you couldn't hunt the late seasons for migratory mulies in Eastern Washington without permits. We're just tired of dealing with all of the yahoo's in the modern firearm season for elk so we're going to try something new. Thanks for your help. I'll let you know what I end up using. 

Offline Hangfire

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Re: Recommended loads for hunting elk with a .54 Lyman Deerstalker
« Reply #4 on: August 31, 2010, 06:27:17 AM »
Most factory recommendations are: 45 cal. and smaller use 3f, larger than 45 cal. used 2f.  That said, most people I know use 3f to 50 cal., then switch to 2f for larger cal. 

I have a 54 cal. TC New Englander. I use 110 grain of 2f and a patched round ball. I have killed elk, one shot, at about 90 yards.

If you use 3f reduce the volume. 3f burns faster thus more pressure. Work with different loads to find what is the most accurate and consistant.

I would use the 2f.

Offline Huckleberry

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Re: Recommended loads for hunting elk with a .54 Lyman Deerstalker
« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2010, 11:03:58 AM »
I use hodgins triple 7, 115 grains of powder and a powerbelt 405 grain bullet. Sighted in at 100 yards but you should shoot 25, 50, and 75 to know where its hitting (might be a little surprised).

That is a pretty accurate gun in my opinion. Just watch for flat nipples and keep her dry. With the above load I've taken a few deer and elk, all clean pass throughs, lots of blood and little or no tracking required.

 



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