43 Mauser Powder

Yeap, looks like what would go on to be known as “Sharpshooter”. Excellent photos there!!!

It would appear that during the time between 1892 and 1900, the US Military testings would settle on a few powders to be used in the .30 cal small arms rifles. The military testings used Wetteren Smokeless Powder as the bases to develop a suitable smokeless powder for that caliber. Eventually Leonard Powder, by then owned by Laflin & Rand, appeared to formulate a disc powder like that in those photos. Although I do not know what the powder was called under contract with the government, Laflin & Rand offered to the civilian market, “W.A. 30”. Then appears to offer the powder as Sharpshooter. Changing hands the name went on as Dupont’s Sharpshooter (carrying on the Laflin & Rand logo “Flag in Wreath”) till being turned over to Hercules, also as Sharpshooter. The Sharpshooter mentioned ran from 1897 to 1948 and was referred to as Sharpshooter #1 by Sharpe. Sharpshooter #2, referred as such by Sharpe, was also manufactured by Hercules from 1907 to 1914 with a slightly different formula but the charges were the same.


Just a note: From left to right- Laflin & Rand Sharpshooter, Dupont No.1 Rifle (also a disc shape powder using the L&R Flag in Wreath logo), Hercules Sharpshooter (L&R Flag in Wreath logo). All three perforated disc shaped powders.

Laflin & Rand Sharpshooter Smokeless Powder

Dupont No. 1 Rifle Smokeless Powder

Hercules Sharpshooter Smokeless Powder


In my rifles, I’ve shot a lot of that ammo in the boxes like Pete posted. All was smokeless but I have reloaded the brass in both black and smokeless, mostly smokeless. What you have to be careful of with the Dominion brass is that it is balloon head and should be closely inspected with each use especially as some of the later manufacture seems to have used shortcuts and they are prone to develop cracks between the rim and primer pocket.

I have a full sealed can of Hercules Sharpshooter. I had used sharpshooter in the past for various cartridges powder from this same lot. I called Hodgdons on a tech question and the conversation got around to sharpshooter and I mentioned that Trail Boss looked remarkably like the old Sharpshooter . He didn’t come out and say it was the same but apparently very similar. Whats old is new again.