Black powder has been around since the 9th century, but it never ceases to amaze me that each year brings more new products related to this ancient explosive. Blackpowder hunting and historical replicas represent opposite ends of the market. Hunting prompts remarkable technological innovation while the demand from shooting enthusiasts, collectors and reenactors keeps designs from the 18th and 19th centuries in catalogs year after year.

For example, the major trend I’ve noticed this year was increasingly more black powder guns, old and new, covered with nitride. The corrosion resistance of stainless steel made it the ideal metal for blackpowder firearms, but it’s more expensive than standard carbon steels. Nitride treatment makes even standard steel nearly impervious to rust and wear because it draws nitrogen and carbon into surface layers, boosting strength, lubricity and corrosion resistance. This treatment is popular on high-wear surfaces like camshaft lobes. But for a black powder rifle, CVA determined that a nitride-treated barrel is not likely to wear or rust in your lifetime, so the company guarantees them for life. That’s saying something.

Other trends honor history, like beautiful deep-laser-engraved cap-and-ball revolvers. The classic 1858 Remington New Army revolver also gets a lot of attention, with special editions from Pedersoli, Uberti, Taylor’s & Company Firearms, EMF and Traditions. So without further ado, scroll through the gallery above to see what’s new and noteworthy in the world of black powder guns.

For more information about the black powder guns featured here, check out the following sites.

CVA Accura MR

CVA Accura PR

CVA Wolf

Dixie Gun Works Parker Hale Whitworth

EMF 1851 Captain Schaeffer

EMF 1851 Navy Deluxe Brass Engraved

EMF 1858 Buffalo Bill Commemorative

EMF 1858 Deluxe Texas Nickel Engraved

EMF 1860 Army Deluxe Engraved Old Silver

Pedersoli 1858 Remington Pattern Custom

Taylor’s & Company 1858 Black Rock

Thompson/Center Impact

Thompson/Center Strike

Traditions 1851 Navy .44

Traditions 1851 Navy Sheriff’s .44

Traditions PA Pellet Ultralight

Traditions Prairie Hawken

Uberti 1858 Buffalo Bill Centennial

This article was originally published in “The Complete Book of Guns” 2018 #200. To get a copy, visit

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