An excellent account of how to make Revolutionary War cartridges is the detailed description contained in the book “An Easy Plan of Discipline for a Militia”, 1775, by Timothy Pickering Jr. and listed in Part 1, Chapter 1, VII as follows:
The best method of making cartridges seems to be that in the army. It is this – Take the soft brown paper called whitish brown, or wrapping paper, and cut it into pices of the form represented in plate 1, figure 2, which is of these dimensions ; the side a b measures about six inches, b c about five inches and a half, and c d about two inches. A piece of wood about six inches long is to be made round so as to fit exactly the size of the ball ; this is called a former : make one end of it hollow to receive a part of the ball : lay the former upon the straight edge b c (as represented by the dotted lines) with its hollow end about an inch from the side a b : roll the paper round the former : then with the ball press in the corner of the paper so as to cover the hollow end of the former : and keeping fast the ball, roll on till the paper is all wrapped round the former : having before taken a piece of twine and fastened its two ends to something that will not easily be moved, and so far apart as to leave it slack, you are now to take with the twine a single turn around the paper, below the ball ; then running in the end of your fore finger till it touches the ball, pull upon the string that it may girt the paper, and by turning round the former with one hand you will presently form a neck below the ball ; which being afterwards tied with a piece of coarse thread, will secure the ball from flipping out : then withdrawing the former, the cartridge is ready to be charged with powder ; in doing which you must put in more because part of it is to be taken for priming : having properly filled the cartridge, twist the top, and the work is done. The size of the paper above described will serve for an ounce ball : if your ball be less, the paper may be somewhat smaller. One thing should be remembered, that if the cartridge exactly fits your firelock when the barrel is perfectly clean, it will be too large, and difficult to be rammed down, when it becomes foul by firing ; and ’tis dangerous firing when the ball is not rammed well home : for this therefore you are to make allowance.