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Any CVA Optima owners


Neiko

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Would like to get a muzzleloader and have been looking at CVA because I don't want to spend the money on a T/C. I was wondering if I should get the Optima or Optima Pro. Is anyone having any problems with theirs? How do they shoot at 100yds & 200 yds?

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I picked up an Optima Pro last fall and used it a couple of times during the firearms season. All in all I really like it. Shoots well, and easy to tear down and clean. As far as range goes, I sighted in for only 75 yards and she'd print them in there as well as can be expected for open sights. Having to shoot with open sights really limits a guys range. I'm looking forward to this years muzzleloading season.

JEV

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The price is right on these and I own one. They shoot well and are easy to clean which is important if you have ever shot a MZ. One caution that I would have is the barrel. When I bought mine two years ago, I found several of the CVA had pitted barrels (on the inside). I spoke to a sales guy and he stated that for some reason, certain batches of guns made by CVA have a lot of problems with rusting barrels. I found one with no rust and bought it. After two years of use, I have noticed that if I do not clean it very regularly, there is a rust build up in the barrel. It has become slightly pitted in some areas but nothing too serious. However, if I did not clean it regularly, I do beleive it would be a major problem. I suspect they have fixed the problem by now but I would check the gun over and ask l;ots of questions before you buy it! Overall, I am very satisfied with the Optima. Good luck!

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Thanks for the reply guys. JLM do you have a Pro also? I mainly want to use it for bear and deer with in 100 yds. I have been reading Jessie's message board and there is a Randy Wakeman that is pretty anti CVA if you ask me. He has written many reviews on MLers. Granted those guys are serious shooters and I am just a recreational shooter but they make it sound like they are junk when they compare them to the Encore. A few regular guys have stated that they get great results at a 100 yards. What do you guys shoot for powder and stuff. From what I found it loos like triple 7's and powerbelts are one of the better combonations.

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Tell me what kind of truck you drive, and I can find you 10,000 guys that hate it!

CVA makes a really nice, low price-point muzzleloader. Even more than the Optima, I really like the CVA Kodiak. It is a shameless knock-off of the Omega. Long barrel, easy to clean and prime, and I find it to be a nicer trigger than the Omega.

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I was going to check that one also when I got to the store. I see that it is about 1lb lighter. I wish they had it with the thumbhole like the Omega does. Is the Pro worth the extra money on the Kodiak? It says it is only an inch longer and a fluted barrel but the weights are the same on the guns listed in Cabelas.

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No, I just have the Optima. I am sure there are many who discount a lower end gun such as CVA. It happens with everything, the lower end gets a bad rap...however, the lower end still gets the job done and is more widely used than the higher end. No doubt, the T/C makes a better quality black powder gun! I am not sure anyopne could dispute that. However, here in MN we can not use scopes during the BP season so shots are typically 100 yards or less. Sure a guy can get out a little further if he practices a ton, but for the sake of arguement, lets stick to the average hunter. If shots are that limited because of open sight, you will not find much difference in the CVA and higher end ML's (performance). Now, if we are talking another state where scopes are allowed, you will probably see a major difference at 200 yards. Here in MN, there is no need to have a high performing ML when something like the CVA Optima will do a fantastic job for you!! If you want a higher end ML, go for it. However, discounting cheaper made ML's that perform well really is not fair. In my book, I say save the extra money and buy a cheaper ML if you will only use it here in MN. Put the extra cash into something else like a nice climber or a new gun case. With the price difference between the Optima and the Encore, you will be able to by something pretty darn nice. Good luck all!

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I haven't had a lot of time to mess with different loads in my optima pro. I played around with different weight charges and ended up with 75grains of 777 FFFG. I am pushing a 45cal 230Gr Hornady XTP with a sabot for a .50 Cal. I shot one deer with it during firearms season last year and was very happy with the results. I haven't had a chance to try the powerbelts. I went with a standard handgun bullet because I can buy the bullets and sabots in bulk and it's a lot cheaper to shoot. The only thing I don't like about the sabots and the 777 powder is the ever popular "crud" ring that develops after a couple of shots. I have to run a patch through after a few shots or I can't seat my bullets to the correct depth. For plinking I've shot patched round balls with a light charge and I don't get that buildup or ring. As for rust in the barrel, I haven't had a problem, granted my barrel is stainless. I give it a good cleaning after a shooting session and its been just fine.

JEV

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The falling block design of the Kodiak allows for a long barrel, therefore, the barrel of the Kodiak should be about the same, if not longer than the Optima pro. This is especially true given the comparitive "over-all" length of the guns. Both guns are great.

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Jev when you talk about the crud ring it leaves do you use bore butter? It sounds like I will have to pick each gun up and see which one feels right. As nice as it would be to have a Encore you guys make some valid points on the CVA and I appreciate your help.

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Nope, I don't run bore butter with my sabots. Although, come to think of it I think I tried a little bore butter on some sabots but it didn't help. My patches that I use for the lead balls have bore butter impregnated in them and they work fine. I just haven't found a good way to eliminate that ring. If I run a wet patch and then a dry patch after every other shot I don't have a problem. When you let that ring build up you can run into problems.

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Guys on the other board mention that bore butter maybe the reason you are getting the crud ring. Don't know anything about MLer's since I dont' own one yet just going off what I read.

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Jev-

I would give the power belts a try, I am sure that you will be impressed. They are VERY accurate and much more clean to shoot. Just my 2 cents!

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I would like to give them a try, but they are a little more then I'd like to spend. My idea of a shooting session can consist of going out and banging out over 50 rounds with the old smokepole. I like to be dead on when season roles around and a guy can never practice to much. I'm also a firm believer in practicing with the loads I plan to use for hunting so there are no second guesses. The powerbelts might put a bigger dent in my wallet then I'd like to see. But, for giggles, I may give them a try this summer just to see how they perform and if the crud ring issue gets better.

JEV

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Ouch. Just checked Cabela's website. Powerbelts are 15 bucks for 15 rounds. I can shoot sabots with handgun bullets for about a fourth of that price....hmmmmmm decisions decision.

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irvingdog, you sold me. I went to Sportsman Wharehouse in St. Cloud and talked to Dick who was very helpful. After holding and feeling them I think I am going to get a Kodiak. It was nice and lite plus the price was better. I almost ordered one on Cabelas and glad I didn't. SH had them for $30 less.

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Quote:

irvingdog, you sold me. I went to Sportsman Wharehouse in St. Cloud and talked to Dick who was very helpful.


If Id' really have sold you, you'd have bought it at a Gander Mountain wink.gif. I'm glad you like it. Have fun and shoot safe.

Ask me my opinion about pellets vs loose powder some time........

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Het if GM can beat there price I would do it but the ones I have stopped by didn't have the one I wanted in stock. What are your opinions about powder vs pellets. I was going to go with 777 in pellet for convience but I was told you get more for your money with powder. I am new to this so any info would be appreciated.

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I will never understand the perceived convenience of pellets over powder.

Scenario one: Using a pipe cleaner, slide into two or threee pellets, and place into barrel.

Scenario two: with pouring funnel (3 bucks) snapped onto lid of propellant bottle, pour into measuring tool (3 bucks). Empty tool into barrel.

I don't see the convenience yet........

You get so much more value to powder over pellets, it is amazing! Six bucks in tools is nothing! Far more importantly, all barrels have a particular harmonic where the barrel+projectile+propellant perform best. Your job is to find and record it. One shot, one kill. You'd better be able to count on it's performance. I've got five bucks in my pocket that says 100g. on the nose isn't your barrels "sweet spot". When the day comes that folks figure out how to shave 5, 10 or 15 grains of powder off of the pellet, they'll be more useful. Until then......

I love watching folks figure out what that little "spiral of smoke" coming out of the end of their barrel is. It's unburned pellet! It does not burn anywhere near as effeciently as good quality powder.

A final thought on convenience: You can't exactly drop 2 pellets in your shirt pocket (or on that cute little speedloader stick/sabot thingee) and carry it to field. It must go into a moisture proof tube of some variety or another "always keep yer powder dry....", which, by the way, is also a great place to toss a charge of loose powder into, if that's what you choose to do.

Cheaper, easier to tailor the charge to the gun, better burn, no less convenient, more variety...........

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You make some good points. I guess I just thought it might be less of a mess if you used pellets but if it doesn't burn the pellets complete it is a horse a piece. What do you recommend for black bear? I was going to use 100gr 777 with 295 powerbelts.

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Quote:

What do you recommend for black bear? I was going to use 100gr 777 with 295 powerbelts.


If that is what your gun likes.........

Remember 777 is hotter than regular propellants, but it is very low smoke, and easy to clean.

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I don't know what my gun likes because I haven't bought it yet but I plan on getting the Kodiak so if you know what works in them I would appreciate it. 100gr isn't too much powder is it for this gun?

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I should have been more clear.....

Every barrel, of every gun is different. My Kodiak likes 90g of 777 pushing a Hornady XTP.

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Well I picked up my Kodiak. smile.gif I won't be able to shoot it for awhile which is going to suck. Got a lot going on in the next couple of weeks. You can use a scope on these for bear and deer right? Just not during the ML season?

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