CVA Accura PR - My first range report

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RoJo

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I spent countless hours the past 5-6 weeks reading ML articles, watching ML videos, and reading everything I could get my hands on in modernmuzzleloader.com. I finally packed my range bag yesterday and took the Accura to the range. I wasn't sure what to expect and I kept my expectations rather low. My excuse for a poor performance would be that yesterday was the first time in over 50 years of shooting and hunting that I ever pulled the trigger on a ML. Of all the good stuff I've read on this site - even going way back in previous years - I couldn't shake the disturbing vibrations from other new ML shooters that it seemed difficult to get a pie-plate group from their rifles. I actually prepared myself for the worse. For those of you that recently wished me luck and told me to have fun with my new hobby, to say that I had a blast is an understatement. I am officially "hooked."


I have critiqued myself so much since yesterday that my next trip will look nothing like the first. Although yesterday was the worst I'll ever do on the range with a ML, I was actually ecstatic about the whole experience. The one thing that helped me accomplish my first-day goal was reading and heading what you guys have posted in these forums. I know it helped a lot reminding myself that whatever routine I do, do it the same exact way every time. And I did, even the "boo-boo" stuff. There's something different and rewarding about the discussions that go on in these forums. I've been taking notes, cutting and pasting, and making my own how-to guide. Got a long ways to go.


I did have some bumps and dips with a few issues. To avoid making this post read like a book I chose to make a few smaller posts in the hopes that I can get some more expert feedback. I hope to have those posts written by the end of today. The threads I hope to post today are related to my experiences with BH 209, my bullet sabot combos, and general cleaning/maintenance while on the range. If you have time I'd be grateful to you for reading one or more and offer some feedback.


As for my pie plate worries, the combination of the Accura, the Leopold VX-Freedom, and the load I was using, I was dumbfounded by the accuracy of the ML. I fired about 20 rounds using CCI 209M, Barnes 250 gr. T-EZ, 70-100 gr. BH 209, just to get on paper on a 25 yd target and get used to the ML. I fired the last batch of rounds at 50 yds., using Hornady 250 gr. SST, 100 gr. BH 209. My goal was to get POI about 2" at 50 yrs with a respectable group. The last 8 rounds were <1" MOA. I need to iron out some quirks before I fire again next week but I was cautiously delighted with the outcome. I'm excited about going beyond yesterday's performance and have faith that the Accura will just keep getting better. I was never sure what to think about all the advertised hype of the rifle when I bought it, but I saw it with my own eyes. It is a slick, smooth-shooting, son-of-a-gun. I am grateful to the members in these forums that I had the pleasure of learning from. Got a long ways to go but it'll be a fun trip.
 

Rod.O

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I am about to purchase the same rifle. My first muzzle loader in over 20 years. I am looking forward to working up the right combination of components as you have done.
I should have mine in hand in about two weeks.
 

RoJo

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Looking forward to your future posts, sounds like a good 1st outing:lewis:
Knowing that I didn’t experience the full potential of my Accura and knowing I have some bugs to work out, I’m excited about going back to the range for a redo.
 

RoJo

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I am about to purchase the same rifle. My first muzzle loader in over 20 years. I am looking forward to working up the right combination of components as you have done.
I should have mine in hand in about two weeks.
Where are you buying the rifle? After shooting Marlin lever actions for over 50 years there is just something special about the ergonomics of this Accura that made it such a pleasure to shoot. Even after numerous quirks with my charges and techniques I was surprised that I could get MOA even at 50 yds. Good luck.
 

Rod.O

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Where are you buying the rifle? After shooting Marlin lever actions for over 50 years there is just something special about the ergonomics of this Accura that made it such a pleasure to shoot. Even after numerous quirks with my charges and techniques I was surprised that I could get MOA even at 50 yds. Good luck.
Grab A Gun has the best price I have found.
 

RoJo

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Great post, RoJo. Keep us informed. I’ve been hunting with muzzleloaders for close to twenty years and am still learning.
I've been chuckling at myself lately. Never thought I'd see the day I was preparing to hunt with a muzzleloader. I used to tell people that I didn't have time in my life to learn something new. When I saw an 85 year-old Michigan hunter with a doe strapped to a shoulder harness I realized I might have a lot of time left. I'm laughing as I remember last year when I grabbed my rifle and a box of cartridges and went hunting. Now, I have a range bag full of paraphernalia that I have to use to make the rifle shoot a bullet. And I'm having a blast. I've been hunting with centerfires for over 50 years and now realize that there was no longer much of a challenge. This world of ML is cool stuff. Take care.
 

SuperKirby

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Glad to hear your enjoying it so much. I know exactly how you feel. While I don't have near the years of experience you do, I was ready to quit hunting altogether when I moved to MN and heard I had to hunt with a shotgun. I was given a crash course on muzzleloaders and have been hooked ever since. Even took it with me last year on my WY elk hunt. I don't know that I see me ever going back to hunting with a centerfire again.
 

RoJo

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Grab A Gun has the best price I have found.
I’d like to keep track of what loads you have success with. I’m going to measure m6 bore this week so I don’t waste time loading sabots that aren’t a good fit. At first I was a bit overwhelmed when I saw so many possibilities for matching sabot/bullet/bore. The best thing that happened to me was finding this site. A lot of expertise from a lot of good muzzleloaders.
 

RoJo

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U
Glad to hear your enjoying it so much. I know exactly how you feel. While I don't have near the years of experience you do, I was ready to quit hunting altogether when I moved to MN and heard I had to hunt with a shotgun. I was given a crash course on muzzleloaders and have been hooked ever since. Even took it with me last year on my WY elk hunt. I don't know that I see me ever going back to hunting with a centerfire again.
It’s addictive. My original plan was to buy a muzzleloader for some extra hunting time before regular season. After only six weeks I’m entertaining thoughts of using my Accura for all seasons. After 50+ years of hunting with Marlin lever actions in PA, they’re beginning to look obsolete.
 

Underclocked

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RoJo

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SIERRA 45(.4515)300gr JSP these are hard to find in stock
Harvester black crushed rib sabot
95 grains by volume BH209
Winchester 209 primer - excellent results in my Apex and Accura.
Appreciate the info. BTW, just wondering why you choose to shoot the Winchester 209 primer. Have you ever used the CCI 209m primer?
 

HC

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The Winchester’s are longer thus less or no blowback.
 

RoJo

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Thanks. If something doesn't clear up Thursday at the range I might check the Winchesters.
 

GM54-120

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NSI (Nobel) 209 primers are as long as the Win209 and larger OD at the nose of the primer too. Roughly the same power as a Win209 but they offer a 209/688 for mag loads too. I think you will find they fit CVA plugs better than other primers and they are pretty cheap.

IIRC my gunshop sells them for about a buck less per 100 than the Win209
 
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RoJo

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NSI (Nobel) 209 primers are as long as the Win209 and larger OD at the nose of the primer too. Roughly the same power as a Win209. I think you will find they fit CVA plugs better than other primers and they are pretty cheap.

IIRC my gunshop sells them for about a buck less per 100 than the Win209
At this point, it appears that my concerns for how things went at the range last week were attributed more than anything to the fact that I paid so much attention to everything else that I was trying to remember that I did not clean the breech plug. If things don't greatly improve this week then I'll know it's not just a dirty breech plug. Do you know how there Nobel 209 compares to the CCI 209M? I guess it's common knowledge that Western Powders swear by the CCI's as the best BH 209 igniter. Other than testing over time, I'm not sure what other reason they'd have for recommending the CCI.
 

RoJo

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Looking forward to your future posts, sounds like a good 1st outing:lewis:
I'm tagging this post of yours from last week. So, if you want to post to another member directly without starting a new thread or doing what I'm doing here, is there a way?

For the first time, I just saw the link with Ron's water bottle testing. The first think I looked at was the first TEZ test. Even though I'm not sure what to make of such testing, I was disappointed, to say the least. By the time I got to the other tests and the "Parameter Adjustment" test I was feeling better, especially with your input that the non-expanding bullets is not what ever happens when you shoot a deer.

In all my years I never became a ballistics guru, other than what I needed to select the best round for my CF rifles. This ML is a different creature.My lingering question after seeing those TEZ tests is how one put that into perspective. Like, how relevant, if at all is it to your experiences with the same bullet and how much correlation is there between the bullet hitting carpet, plywood, and water bottles compared to your hands-on experience in the woods?

Oh, do you have any experience/thoughts about the Tradition's Smackdown bullets performing in an Accura?
 

GM54-120

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For mag primers i prefer the Fed209A. Personally i find it more critical the primer leaks less than being slightly hotter. All that extra energy is useless if its just leaking out.

Older Smackdowns have been rebranded SSTs for ages. I think they use the same 3 petal EZ load sabot. Its just a different color.
 
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