.50 or .54

Discussion in 'Muzzleloader Hunting' started by chain, Apr 25, 2009.

  1. chain

    chain Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    366
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2004
    I have made up my mind to buy a Lyman Great Plains hunter rifle. Would you guys buy a .50 or a .54 cal.? Would you buy a kit or fully assembled? I would be mostly hunting whitetail with it but I would hpe to take it west for muley or elk when I could manage it. I also want to shoot round balls. Thanks
     
  2. Sharpstick

    Sharpstick Active Member

    Messages:
    30
    Joined:
    May 17, 2005
    I built a Lyman Great Plains in .54. It's a pretty easy kit and I enjoyed putting it together. With just a little effort the fit and finish will be superior to the factory rifle. The exception being the bluing for me. I tried cold bluing it and it was so-so. if I do another one I will try browning it. I did the slow twist barrel because I like shooting round balls, but they go together the same. I would suggest the .54 if you might chase elk with it some day.
     

  3. chain

    chain Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    366
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2004
    I was thinking of the kit , so I could brown the barrel. If the assembled rifle came "browned" I would buy it. Thanks
     
  4. nate270

    nate270 Active Member

    Messages:
    29
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2009
    the .54 is more versitile you can shoot .50 sabbot rounds for bigger game and at longer distances the .54 is the better of the two calibers. as far as the kit browning ithe barrel is great and looks authentic but you can blue is yourself with a $25. kit and a propain torch it only has to be 200* and it looks great. the .50 is limited so unless youy have a pistol ar something else that usess that caliber i think that the .54 is the better caliber and for long range muzzleloader shooting look into the lyman minny mag bullets the ball just doesnt have that good of a coeffitent.
     
  5. Speed Trap

    Speed Trap Member

    Messages:
    14
    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2008
    I just got the GPR in .54 cal and can't wait to burn some powder.
     
  6. ATH

    ATH Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    853
    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2003
    If you're shooting round balls, go .54 for sure. ESPECIALLY if you are going for elk. I'm sure .45s did in a lot of elk back in the day, but we're not starving for lead and powder anymore so go with the bigger option. No reason for a .54 with sabots but with roundballs, a .50 weighs under 200gr I think.
     
  7. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,475
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    How often do you wan to shoot round balls? The reason I ask is because in general I would recommend the 50 (more variety in bullets, easier to get....) . But if you're planning on shooting round balls a bunch, then go the 54.
     
  8. blackpowder jim

    blackpowder jim Member

    Messages:
    8
    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    you made a great choice with the greatplains.i would buy the kit and brown all the furnature and barrel.i have done several kits and it's not hard at all,just takeyour time..50or.54 both good choices.i prefer the .50 it shoots a 190gr.ball the .54 a 240 gr. cap lock or flint lock is also another choice. rate of twist makes a big differance in blackpower. 1/48 and lower for conicals.1/48 and higher for round ball. 1/60 1/66 1/70 1/72 is the norm. good luck on your blackpowder shooting.if you need any help when putting together your rifle please contact me. keep your powder dry.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2009
  9. mfwing82

    mfwing82 Member

    Messages:
    10
    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2008
    This is the 54 great plains rifle I just put together . I treated the metal with a vinegar etch which is very easy to do with a unique finish[​IMG][​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2009
  10. mfwing82

    mfwing82 Member

    Messages:
    10
    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2008
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  11. rsells

    rsells Member

    Messages:
    5
    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    I have used both 50 cal and 54 cal muzzleloading rifles for target and deer hunting, and like the 54 better. You can keep the velocity up and still do not encounter as much drop as you do with bores of 58 and larger. I couldn't tell much difference between the 50 cal rifles I have used as compared to the 54 when I look at the point of impact out to 125 yards, but I feel the 54 hurts the critter more than the 50. I only use patched round balls and do not take shots unless I judge the yardage 125 yards or less. I worked up a good load for my 54 and have used it to hunt squirrels while doing my AMM requirements and camp outs. Just have to hit the guys in the head and all is well!
    Roger Sells