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Old 10-08-2011, 06:52 AM   #1
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Iowa
Posts: 424
Default Input: CVA vs. Traditions

Forgive me, I'm very green when it comes to muzzleloaders. I've been doing my own research and handling some guns the past few weeks. I'm looking to purchase a gun for my son. He is currently 8 and just harvested his first deer during youth season with a 20 ga. He is hooked and wants his own gun. After some thought I've decided to get him a muzzleloader instead of a slug gun so that he can take advantage of the late season in a year or two.

After looking at several guns in a lot of price ranges I'm pretty much settled on two:

CVA Optima and Traditons Pursuit XLT Ultralight

Both guns feature a camo synthetic thumbhole stock and stainless barrel. They're currently priced within $10 of one another at most stores...right in the $325 range.

The CVA is a little shorter and a pound heavier. Both good for a youngster as the weight should help a little with recoil. It also looks to have a better breach plug design.

The Traditons felt better in my hand. It also comes with fiber optic sights...something I'd have to buy for the CVA.

Both guns appear to have nice online reviews and good quality ratings. I'm leaning towards the Traditions just because I liked the balance and feel the best. Does anybody here have any input or advice? Am I overlooking anything?

I'm sure this could be just like a Ford vs. Chevy or Hoyt vs. Mathews vs. Bowtech argument. I'm hoping for objective opinions if anybody has one!
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Old 10-08-2011, 07:03 AM   #2
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Location: Wyoming, IA
Posts: 175

I just picked up a pursuit ultralight and so far I am impressed. I think the breach plug is user friendly, the gun feels good and shoots well, and I don't think it kicks as hard as I expected it would. I am using 250 grn SST with 90 grn Blackhorn 209.

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Old 10-08-2011, 09:43 PM   #3
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I shoot a traditions Vortek, love the gun, shoots extremely well. One thing, if you'd like to shoot the Blackhorn 209 powder(which I highly recommend) I don't think the CVA breech plugs work very well with this powder. The accelerator breech plug in the Traditions rifles works fine with the BH209.
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Old 10-09-2011, 06:50 AM   #4
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Thanks for your responses, guys. Until I posted this thread I had just assumed I'd have him shooting pellets. Both of you mentioned Blackhorn 209 and I did some reading on that powder early this morning...glad it came up as I think that's what I'd like shot through this gun. Based on my reading I'd say the Traditions has better mojo with B209 than the CVA's.

It's nice to have this place as a resource. Thanks so much. I'm going to get him the Traditions.
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Old 10-09-2011, 10:11 AM   #5
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Haven't had any experience with the Optima or the Traditions, but I'm currently shooting a CVA Accura in stainless/synthetic and that thing is amazing. Super easy to clean, and very accurate. Also no matter which way you go, I recommend Blackhorn 209 and Barnes TMZ bullets. That combo is deadly. It's nice to be able to take the breech plug out with your thumb, spray some barrel blaster down the barrel and run two patches through and the barrel is as clean as it gets.
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