Homemade Muzzleloader Uses Matches to Fire “Fishing Lead” (Video)


Homemade Muzzleloader Uses Matches to Fire “Fishing Lead” (Video)

This homemade gun is pretty great. In the chamber area, and a good ways down the barrel, it is made with double-walled pipe.

(When you get tired of the long intro and its obnoxious music, do yourself a favor and skip ahead to the 1:20 mark.)

When pulled, the trigger slides a pin out of the way of the hammer, which is a spring-loaded bent nail that will hit a touch hole in the side of the barrel when the trigger releases it.

After loading the barrel with “powder” in the form of match heads, the fellow loading it rams and pounds the hell out of it, apparently crushing the chemical to ensure an even burn when the gun is fired.

Then he rams and tamps some paper wadding.

After that comes some sort of something–I think the guy said, “Just fishing lead.” It appears to be a chunk of lead tubing, much smaller than the barrel. After cutting off a hunk maybe an inch and a half long, he puts a taper on one end of it.

After he drops that down the barrel, he inserts some more paper wadding and tamps it well.

He then shaves the phosphorus from more match heads and pulverizes it into powder.

Next step: shaving the striking surface off of a matchbox and mixing that with the powder, “to make it shock-sensitive.” He tests a bit of it between his thumbnails to make sure it will ignite under pressure. Then he carefully fills the touch hole with this priming compound.

When he fires the gun, it seems to have a pretty good kick. Also, you do not want to stand to his right when he’s shooting; a lot of gas leaks out of that touch hole!

It just proves the ingenuity of people, and that even when guns are banned, they can be built.


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Editor & Contributing Writer Russ Chastain is a lifelong hunter and shooter who has spent his life learning about hunting, shooting, guns, ammunition, gunsmithing, reloading, and bullet casting. He started toting his own gun in the woods at age nine and he's pursued deer with rifles since 1982, so his hunting knowledge has been growing for more than three and a half decades. His desire and ability to share this knowledge with others has also grown, and Russ has been professionally writing and editing original hunting & shooting content since 1998. Russ Chastain has a passion for sharing accurate, honest, interesting hunting & shooting knowledge and stories with people of all skill levels.

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