Tips & Tricks – Q & A September 2015

September 16, 2015

This year I will be hunting a special muzzleloader hunt. At the range the other day I used the Barnes Aligner tool to load 250 grain T-EZ bullets (blue sabots) in my muzzloader. The force required was much more than other saboted bullets, i.e. 250 Grain Hornady SST saboted muzzleloader bullets using a different aligner. Today I was looking at the way the Barnes aligner tool contacts the T-EZ bullet. After close inspection I noticed it contacts the sabot before the copper bullet. Is that the way it’s supposed to be? It seems that could cause the plastic to be pressed outward or buckled and give more resistance.

We have 3 different aligner tools for the 3 different nose profiles in our 50 caliber muzzleloader bullets. In order to distinguish them from each other, we put 2, 3 or 4 grooves on the outside of the aligner. The 2 groove version #30661 is for the Expander MZ with the black sabot. The 3 groove aligner #30678 is used in conjunction with the Spitfire MZ, and the 4 groove aligner is used with the tipped versions – Spitfire TMZ and Spitfire TEZ bullets. All of them use the 10-32 thread that is common to most ramrods.

barnes muzzleloader aligners

A snug fit is essential to good accuracy – this is because the sabot is the part that makes contact with the rifling, and it needs a tight fit to impart the spin to the bullet, creating good stability and the result is good accuracy.

The aligner does have a close fit, nearly touching or just lightly touching the sabot with the shorter 250gr version compared to the 290gr TEZ. We've marketed them this way for many years with great feedback and we don't believe this is an issue.

-Ty Herring

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