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Knight Disc Rifle & Hodgdon Triple 7

<H1 Knight Disc Extreme Rifle /H1>

The first test of the new Knight Disc Extreme .45 caliber rifle was a ton a fun and we got to test several new products with good results. The products included the Knight rifle (DE756TC, 26" stainless, black composite thumbhole stock), Hodgdon Triple Seven Powder (H777), Powerbelt 195 grain Bullets, and TC 155 grain Mag Express Sabots

<H2 Knight Disc Extreme Rifle /H2>The Knight Disc Extreme rifle uses the new style Knight full plastic 209 primer disc system that is really slick. After loading the rifle and putting it on safe, you open the bolt and drop in a full plastic disc holding a 209 shot shell primer and close the bolt.  The front end of the plastic disc is pushed onto the nipple on the breach plug, to form a tight seal to keep moisture out and most of the blast of the cap inside for complete, reliable ignition. The operation is very similar to dropping a cartridge into a single shot rifle and extracting the spent cartridge after the shot. The function of the rifle was great, but I did have a couple of complaints. Most of the screws on the rifle were loose when it arrived in the factory box. The breech plug, the sight screws, the ramrod holder screws, and stock screw all had to be tightened. The ramrod is nothing to write home about, either. It is a hollow aluminum tube with the brass ends bradded in. I pulled one of the brass end pieces off the first time I cleaned the rifle. I will replace it.  Remington ramrods have this beat a mile.

I like the fully adjustable trigger. It is good right out of the box, but adjustments are there if you  want to change the pull weight or travel.  The "iron" sights have red/green fiber optics that are easy to see in any light and I was able to shoot some great groups using these glowing sights.  If you want to add a scope, you will need two of Weaver's #45 scope bases. I mated these with Burris Z-rings to get a solid mount for my scope. In Georgia, scopes are not allowed during the Primitive Weapons season.  Using the Weaver/Burris setup, I can easily remove and reattach the scope, while maintaining the scope's zero.

<H2 Hodgden Triple 7 Powder /H2>I wanted to try Hodgdon's new H777 Powder. I called Knight to discuss H777 before heading to the range.  They advised me that H777 is about 15% hotter than Pyrodex and that although the Disc Rifle is rated for 150 grain magnum loads, they have found that the best performance is with about 100 grains of H777. This 100 grain load should push bullets to the same velocity as about a 120 grains of Pyrodex.   Hodgdon lists 100 grains as their max recommended load.

Hodgdon Triple Seven Data
.45 Caliber Magnum Muzzleloaders

Bullet/Sabot

100 gr.

150 gr. Knight/Red Hot

2284

180 gr. T/C XTP

2108

240 gr. Knight Lead PT

1991

225 gr. CVA Power Belt

1905

I first chronograhed two bullets, the Powerbelt 195 grain, and the TC 155 grain sabot. They shot well in the Knight with groups in the 2" range.  Click here to see the Powerbelt 100yd groups. The best groups were obtained with the 110 grain charge of H777, pushing the 195 grain Powerbelts to about 2050 FPS .  Adding 10 more grains of powder produced a few wide or high fliers, with little gain in velocity, so I did not increase the charge any farther.

ODHA Triple Seven Data for
.45 Caliber Magnum Muzzleloaders

Bullet/Sabot

100 gr.

110 gr.

140 gr.

155 gr. T/C XTP

2220

2285

 

195 gr. Power Belt

1985

2050

 

Here is where the ODHA fun begins. I have two bullets shooting good groups, so which one do I use?  Plugging the info into the JBM Ballistics program gaive me some interesting results.  The trajectories out to 200 yards are almost the same path. Out to about 50 yards, the energy of the bullets are about the same. From 100 to 200 yards, the Powerbelt bullet's energy is considerably more, averaging around 200 more pound feet of energy at the longer ranges. The reason is because the Powerbelt has more bullet weight and better ballistic coefficient. At 200 yards, the 195 grain Powerbelt has 50% more energy than the 155 grain TC XTP bullet. So, the nod is going to the Powerbelt for big game, and TC 155's for turkey, small game hunting, or target practice. Cost is one more factor in this game.  The TC sabots cost about 1/4 the price of the Powerbelts. Of course there are many more great bullets on the market and I hope to test more soon. 

To summarize, all the products lived up to what they advertise.  The Knight is a wonder rifle, accurate, simple, strong.  I plan to hunt the entire season with it, not just primitive season.  The Hodgden Triple Seven when compared to Pyrodex is cleaner burning (and easier cleanup), a little more powerful, has no sulfur odor, and smokes about the same.  Both the bullets tried shot well, loaded easily and printed very good groups in the 1 1/2 to 2 inch range at 100 yards.

Well I am off to Franklins Sporting goods for more bullets.  Deer season is just around the corner.  
 

Chester

Click here for results of updated information and trajectory tables.

Deer Hunting with the Knight .45 Caliber Disc Extreme Rifle

Muzzleloading Deer Season opened on October 12, 2002 in Georgia, and I got to go out on the third day of season to try out the Knight .45 caliber Disc Extreme . No scopes are allowed in Georgia during the week-long Primitive Season, so I was hoping for a shot that would not strain my old eyes.  Bucks or Does can be taken in this season, and was looking for a nice Doe or a Buck with eight points or larger.  I was anxious to see how the new .45 caliber rifle would perform.  The load was 110 grains of Hodgdon Triple Seven pushing a 195 grain AeroTip Powerbelt bullet.

The morning was perfect. Cool weather for the first time this year. A shower had moved through a couple of hours before dawn, so I was able to move quietly through the tall pines and white oaks in Wilks County Georgia.  I was hunting on a new lease for the first time, and this trip was a scouting and hunting trip.  My friend Mack Hamilton, owner of "From the Ground Up" and founder of the hunting club, had told me of a good area with some established stands.  I started working my way through that area, scouting and looking for signs of deer. I soon found one of the stands Mack had told me about and climbed up for the morning hunt.  Five minutes later there were Does in front of me. The first one came out for a perfect broad side shot at 50 yards. I was ready when she came into the opening and touched the trigger.

The shot hit her in the center of the shoulders and she went straight down without taking a step.  The 195 grain Powerbelt  bullet hit the 100 pound Doe at almost 2000 feet per second, and the bullet did not exit. I prefer complete penetration through an animal for a better blood trail, but the bullet devastated the deer and no trailing was necessary. I will be using the same load combination on the next hunt so come back for those results. The freezer is packed, so it is Bucks only for the rest of the year. Hope to have some good pictures of a nice Buck in the next story.

Chester
 

First Whitetail Buck with Knight .45 Caliber Disc Extreme Rifle

A little work and a lot of luck paid off on the sixth day of Muzzleloader season.  After getting in the stand  around 7:30, the deer started moving.  I have never seen so many deer in one day in my life. I lost count of the does and fawns at about 25. Then the big boy showed up and gave me a great 50 yard shot. One Powerbelt AeroTip through the lungs. Again the bullet did not go all the way through and there was almost no blood trail, but the kill was quick and he did not go far, about 80-100 yards.  

I am shooting a 195 grain .45 caliber bullet at about 2100 fps.  I did not recover the bullet, but I think these pure lead bullets are mushrooming to about double their size at this velocity and while they expend all the energy into the animal and kill very quickly, they don't penetrate through the animal. I will be sure to break a shoulder on my next shot instead of just a lung shot. I will also go to a heavier 225 grain bullet soon.

The Knight Disc Rifle shoots great.  Without a doubt, this is the most accurate muzzleloader I have ever shot.  Combined with 110 grains of Hodgdon Triple Seven Powder and Powerbelt bullet, this rifle shoots better than most centerfires.  The best thing about this combination is consistency of the shots.  No fliers that used to drive me crazy.  I know that I can put the bullet exactly on target, and a 100 yard shot is just a walk in the park.  One thing that gives a hunter the big edge is confidence, and with this outfit, my edge just when up about to a higher level.  Good Hunt'n to you and be safe. 

Chester

 

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