Having some fun reloading with Trail Boss powder in my 45-70

sgt_zim

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I started loading for the 45-70 in 1975 when I bought my very first Ruger No. 1. It is on my short-list of all-time favorites!

I have a near virgin Henry in this fine caliber that needs to get some of the shine knocked off it! So far I've only loaded 300gr JHP and 350gr cast for it.

Last week added a Skinner peep. Sweet little rifle!

Glad to see the 45-70 getting some much deserved love here on AH.

Tim

Also on Beartooth - a guy used the Piledriver for a straight through-and-through at the shoulder on a 2200 lb American Bison out of a Sharp's replica, I believe (total penetration was just shy of 36" as I recall). Not sure why they have such a bad rap in Africa other than it's-just-one-of-those-things-that-isn't-done. American bison were killed in the tens of thousands with old trap-doors and their low velocities/pressures. No reason to believe that cape buffalo are any less prone to dropping in the same way.

I wouldn't try to shoot a cape from beyond 100-120 yards with one, but I wouldn't go a lot further than that with a 375 or 416, either. I haven't been over there (yet), but in the brush country, there don't seem to be a great many opportunities to go beyond 100 yards anyway no matter what's at the business end of your rifle.
 

ChrisG

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Also on Beartooth - a guy used the Piledriver for a straight through-and-through at the shoulder on a 2200 lb American Bison out of a Sharp's replica, I believe (total penetration was just shy of 36" as I recall). Not sure why they have such a bad rap in Africa other than it's-just-one-of-those-things-that-isn't-done. American bison were killed in the tens of thousands with old trap-doors and their low velocities/pressures. No reason to believe that cape buffalo are any less prone to dropping in the same way.

I wouldn't try to shoot a cape from beyond 100-120 yards with one, but I wouldn't go a lot further than that with a 375 or 416, either. I haven't been over there (yet), but in the brush country, there don't seem to be a great many opportunities to go beyond 100 yards anyway no matter what's at the business end of your rifle.
I don't want this to turn into another .45/70 for Cape Buff thread, but the .45/70 isn't used a lot over there not because it "just isn't done." It's because when you are weighing the potential for your guide/trackers to be killed, and a $10,000+ trophy fee... there are much MUCH better cartridges to do it with. As related above, the .45/70 doesn't lack for penetration, what it doesn't have is the knockdown power than some of the bigger guns have. .375 H&H is considered the minimum for a reason. I remember reading an article about a cape buff taken with a 6.5x54 MS loaded with a CEB brass solid. It went right through the buff but it ran a long ways before it could be followed up and finished off with several more shots.

I think a lot of .45/70 owners think that guys who own .375s and .416 are snobs and wouldn't stoop to using their beloved Gov't even though they (the owners) are thoroughly conviced it is the hammer of Thor. The fact of the matter is it will work and it will kill dangerous game. It just isn't the best tool for the job. If it worked so well, why do you think that a "small bore" african double in the black powder era was a .577 BPE? because a 4,6,8 or 10 Bore was considered adequate for buff. More precisely for stopping buff that didn't want to die. I'm sure the .45/70 "buffalo sharps" was tried... It just didn't work as well.
 

Tam Dl

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- It is obvious that a 45-70 is sub optimal for a DGR rifle. But there are a lot of things that are sub-optimal that don't seem to generate the same blowback. From cameras & handguns to archery gear to the 9.3x62 (though in the right rifle, that ticks a lot of boxes).

- The 45-70 suffers from insufficient velocity; energy; SD; and limits bullet selection, cast bullets are often preferred; while with decent loads the recoil is brutal in typical guns.

- There are 4 relatively common leverguns cartridges that are significantly more in line than the 45-70: The 45-90 (90% 458 win capacity), the 470 Turnbull, the 50 Alaskan, and the 50-110. There are a ton of other options but they tend to be one-off, and marked brass can become an issue.

A reasonably strong and economic option is the Win. 1895 re-barreled for the 9.3x62. It tops the 45-70 by having lighter recoil; better penetration; better bullet options; pointed bullets; enough velocity to hammer lions and other softer targets with hydrostatic shock. The ammo is available in Africa, and the performance is understood.

The 1895 was battle proven on the eastern front where it was often picked up out of preference compared to bolt actions. It has controlled round feed ish; a box magazine; It is ambidextrous; The Forgotten Weapons channel threw it into mud and found it it just kept chugging; and like any Lever it is almost as fast as a double, but with 6 shots. But unlike a Barrett in 50 BMG that migh be considered unsporting, the 1895 has been in Africa since the rifle was created. The rifle is still manufactured in a strong form. The same conversion is probably possible in the Browning magazine rifle, though I have not seen one.


 
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