Federal Aims at Muzzleloaders’ Accuracy with New Bullet

Federal Aims at Muzzleloaders’ Accuracy with New Bullet
Federal Trophy Copper Muzzleloader Bullet
Federal Trophy Copper Muzzleloader Bullet

Muzzleloaders have come a long way from the days of Daniel Boone and Davy Crockett.

Perhaps the only similarity between today’s firearms and those used by the famous woodsmen is how they are loaded. From muzzleloaders' ignition systems to the powder they burn, the guns are light years away from their predecessors.

Federal Premium aims to take another element of the muzzleloader a step further from its Kentucky and Hawken Rifle roots – its ammunition.

What Federal has attempted to do with its Trophy Copper Muzzleloader Bullet is deliver the performance of a sabot bullet, with the convenience of a belted round. The company believes it has found the middle ground with the B.O.R. (Bullet Obturating Ramp) Lock MZ System.

The heart of the B.O.R. Lock MZ System is a polymer cup that is permanently attached to the bullet's base. Its function is similar to a sabot, creating a seal in the bore and engaging the rifling when the muzzleloader is fired.

The system functions by the force of ignition pushing the cup forward onto raised bands, called obturating ramps, along the bullet’s shank, expanding its diameter. The system, according to Federal, helps provide 200-yard accuracy, but it does more than keep a muzzleloader on target.

The B.O.R. Lock also aids shooters in one of the more challenging aspects of a muzzleloader – the follow-up shot. The system is able to offer quick reloading of the firearm in two ways.

Federal Trophy Copper Muzzleloader Bullet
Federal Trophy Copper Muzzleloader Bullet parts.

First, the Trophy Copper Muzzleloader Bullet and the B.O.R. Lock cup have a slightly smaller diameter than the a muzzleloader's bore, making it easier to load in the first place. Second, the cup has a hard, fiber-reinforced polymer ring at its base that functions as a fouling scrubber. This decreases the need to clean between shots and makes it easy to seat the bullet at the exact same depth for every shot.

Similar to other projectiles in Trophy Copper line, the copper-alloy bullet features a polymer tip, with a deep, hollow cavity and skiving that allows for consistent, devastating expansion. The high ballistic coefficient also flattens trajectories and minimizes wind drift.

To be sure, Federal Trophy Copper Muzzleloader Bullet promises a mouthful – in loading ease alone. And if the bullets deliver it could mark yet another moment when the muzzleloader further broke from its forebears.


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Elwood Shelton is the Digital Editor for Gun Digest. He lives in Colorado and has provided coverage on a vast spectrum of topics for GD for more than a decade. Before that, he was an award-winning sports and outdoors reporter for a number of newspapers across the Rocky Mountains. His experience has consisted of covering the spread of chronic wasting disease into the Western Slope of Colorado to the state’s ranching for wildlife programs. His passion for shooting began at a young age, fostered on pheasant hunts with his father. Since then, he has become an accomplished handloader, long-range shooter and avid hunter—particularly mule deer and any low-down, dirty varmint that comes into his crosshairs. He is a regular contributor to Gun Digest Magazine and has contributed to various books on guns and shooting, most recently Lever-Actions: A Tribute to the All-American Rifle.



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