Muzzleloader PSA

This Youtube clip was published in 2011 but it shows some very serious safety precautions to be taken when using muzzleloaders. The shooter has an inline muzzleloader, but left his powder charge open on the table, directly underneath the rifle as it was being fired. As soon as the round fired, the entire charge ignites and engulfs him in a ball of fire. It appears that he turned out okay afterwards, but I’m sure he’ll be wearing eye protection next time, and take better care of his powder containers in the future. I’ve only had significant experience shooting traditional percussion muzzleloaders at a summer camp in New Mexico and don’t recall safety warnings about this kind of thing happening. But should I get into the sport or be around a muzzleloader, I’ve certainly learned a valuable lesson from this video. I imagine the argument could be made that this could happen alot easier with some of the older powders where you actually pour them down the muzzle, and not with the newer, inline powder pellets. However it doesn’t seem to matter, as black powder is very flammable and must be treated properly and responsibly when being used on the range. Keep your powder covered folks!


Infantry Marine, based in the Midwest. Specifically interested in small arms history, development, and usage within the MENA region and Central Asia. To that end, I run Silah Report, a website dedicated to analyzing small arms history and news out of MENA and Central Asia.

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  • KestrelBike

    $20 says the next time that guy’s out shooting he still doesn’t wear eye pro.

    • Shootin’ Buddy

      No bet!

      Did you see the sandals?

    • wzrd1

      Ah, the eyebrows and eyelashes will grow back.
      At least, that’s likely what he’ll think and not wear eye protection.

      That said, I’ve been known to fire my rifles without eye protection, bad old habits…

  • Wanlace Yates

    People using inlines need to know the usual protocols that keep black powder shooters safe. Keep your powder containers OFF of the shooting bench and firing line. Charge the barrel behind the firing line, well away from any ignition sources. Prime and shoot on the firing line. Use small measures for your barrel charges – do not pour straight out of an open powder container or a full powder flask – you are holding a bomb if you do that.

    • wzrd1

      True, however, it makes for a far less impressive fireworks display.

      Who wants to bet that he was asked to leave the firing line and property?

  • Cal.Bar

    Play stupid games…. win stupid prizes!

  • iksnilol

    Don’t shoot over flammable stuff? Who’da thunk that!?

    • Cal S.


  • Sianmink

    Cellphone cameras must also be used responsibly.

  • TJbrena

    I was downwind from a guy shooting blackpowder at Ben Avery a few years ago. The smoke was some nasty-smelling stuff.

    • wzrd1

      I’ve always said, black powder rifles come with a complimentary smokescreen. 😉

  • EYe Pro Meistro

    In the face of the storm.

  • BrandonAKsALot

    You’ll shoot your eye out.

  • John Henry Bicycle Lucas

    Black powder is explosive. Smokeless powder is extremely flammable. There is a lot of difference when it is touched off like that in the open.

    • wzrd1

      True, it appears that black powder substitute doesn’t ignite with the same impressive effects of black powder.
      Fortunately for the inattentive shooter.

      • John Henry Bicycle Lucas

        I have found that pyrodex is just as corrosive, and really is not smokeless. Far from it. It and all others I have tried do not impress me at all. It does take less powder to send projectiles downrange. I guess that would be about the only thing that might be an advantage.

        Oh, and it does not have that low pitch boom like black powder does 🙂