Novice questions

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Novice questions

Postby Silvius » Thu May 20, 2021 12:36 pm

Hi Gents,
It has taken me a while to actually get to building my first TSS shells. I got a load from someone very reliable last year but it has taken me (and the component suppiers!) a long time to get round to actually sourcing all the components. Now that I have actually put them together I am not confident as a novice that they fit right and I am wondering more experienced people could tell me what they think.

The recipe (which has no buffer) specifies starting with 1/4 of 20 gague cork in the base of the 12 gague wad and then put in 1/8th of 20 gauge fiber. I just can't get 1/4 of 20 gague cork into the wad. As you can see from the cross section photo, the wad's sides are tapered. The 1/8th cork in the picture is as far down as it goes without spreading the petals and it won't get to the bottom even with spreading them. If I cut the cork down it works OK and so I am thinking to just buy some smaller gague corks, maybe a 1/8 24 gauge to put on top of a 1/8 28 gauge I presume these small changes will not affect anything? download/file.php?mode=view&id=349

The recipe said mylar was optional and I bought 125 micron (5 thousanths of an inch) genuine mylar. Is this a sensible thickness please? The tapered wad sides make the mylar want to fold into something of a cone, I presume I can just trim it flat after checking I have a ¼ inch overlap at the top?

Here are some pictures of my stacks in the wad (I have shaved the corks down to fit). As I have never put a TSS load together before, I just want to be sure I have got things the right height. I have only loaded lead before and I have never been too worried what it looks like so long as it weighs right as I know it won’t hurt my barrel. I realise that the cork and the fiber will compress some as the load gets accelerated down the barrel but is this stack too domed to be safe for the barrel please? This is ¼ cork, 1/8 felt, (rammed down firmly) mylar and the correct dose of TSS. It seems to be going to fit in the hull OK without rising up any more but it is snug as you can see by it not falling down the hull under its weight and it is slightly domed. download/file.php?mode=view&id=350

By contrast I have also attached a photo of the same stack without the mylar. download/file.php?mode=view&id=349

Am I good to go if I trim the mylar flat and put on the 1/8 12 gague fiber over shot wad that the recipe specifies or should I take out some of the packing please?

Thank you very much for your advice. I can't wait to take this out and pattern it.
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Dave in AZ
Posts: 219
Joined: Thu Mar 10, 2016 1:38 pm

Re: Novice questions

Postby Dave in AZ » Tue Jun 01, 2021 2:32 pm

Great post Silvius, thanks for the good pictures!

You can trim the cork to whatever size is needed to fit. They just list 20 gauge cork in a 12-gauge wad so that it will fit down in there. However none of that filler is airtight or fit critical. It doesn't matter what shape it is or anything it's just there to take up space so that the shot comes to the top of the wad lip so that you can get a good crimp without getting the petals stuck in the crimp.

I just buy my own cork in a sheet from a hobby shop, or Home Depot, or a sewing place for felt. I buy the mylar whenever I see fairly thick stuff, a good source is those rolls of party streamers or reflective stuff to scare away Birds. But almost every food bag like Starbucks coffee, or potato chips, is made from mylar and can be used also. How thick it is isn't supercritical either, except as regards the volume taken up so again the shot reaches the correct level at the top of the wad. And of course you're just sticking the milar there to help provide more barrier so that small TSS doesn't work its way through the wad slits.

With my felt I don't even cut that stuff round I just cut strips and then cut squares out of the strips. Sometimes cork the same way, although usually I punched the cork out with hole punches that I bought at Harbor Freight. And also larger ones that I bought online.

Since it is intended that you build the load with the wad stuff down in the shell Hull already, all of your concerns about the cork not fitting or spreading the pedals should be immaterial. Just stuff the cork down there, and then take a dowel rod or tool handle and just Smash It Down On Top then shove it into the bottom of the wad. It doesn't really matter if it gets slightly bent or mashed up at all. These loads are often made with 70lbs of force or so.

For the mylar, just don't cut it tall enough that the bottom is not affected by the sloping walls of the wad. Get it a bit short so that it'll go in in a nice rolled tube and the top will be level with the top of the wad, and you should be okay. Again the only function of the mylar is to keep small TSS from sneaking through the slits in the wad and scraping your Barrel. Even if it goes in slightly cone-shaped, as long as you have the top even with the wad, when you pour in the shot and mash it down with your thumb or dowel rod, you should be able to get the shot in there and fill it up to the top. And yes you can add felt filler on top.

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