The various black powders, every variety having its merits peculiar to itself, have served us long and well; but, with the appearance of the multiple loading rifle, smokeless powder is coming into extensive use for military and hunting purposes. The advantage of smokeless rifle powder is, that the products of combustion being entirely or mainly gaseous, the solid or unconsumed residue is very small, leaving the bore of the rifle comparatively clean after firing. The smoke produced is almost nothing, generally, only a slight puff being noticeable and that dissipating immediately. The chief advantage from the sportsman's or hunter's standpoint is the high chamber pressure of from fifteen to twenty-five tons per square inch, giving to the bullet very high muzzle velocities—2,000 to 2,500 feet per second, which consequently give very flat trajectories. A flat trajectory has always been insisted on by sportsmen for hunting rifles, even that resulting from heavy charged military arms not satisfying them, and rightly so, for it almost eliminates or at least greatly simplifies the calculations of distances, and the constant manipulation of sights common to the black powder high trajectory rifles.
Farrow, Edward S. American Small Arms; a Veritable Encyclopedia of Knowledge for Sportsmen and Military Men. New York: Bradford, 1904. Print.
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