45-70 Data

Had the 45-70 out yesterday, 1874 replica “Down Under”
2 loads, both 405gr Oregon Trail Laser Cast
13gr Trail Boss and 49gr Varget
Interesting but not surprising the velocity drops amazingly fast with the supersonic load and the big flat point bullet. Good SD’s, like to get it under 10, next batch I’ll use the electronic dispenser instead of the Dillon powder measure.

First the 13gr Trail Boss

Really quiet, almost like running a can with the heavy 32" octagon barrel. Tricky to get the radar positioned so the audio trigger picked up the shot.

One of the rounds. Target was at 100 yards, berm was 125 yards, LabRadar tracked the bullet through the backstop.

Drop in velocity between 25 and 120 yards 84 FPS

Full Blow 49gr Varget load (Max is 50gr for replica sharps type actions)

Now these were LOUD.
The power factor was way off, had the radar set for 155 gr instead of 405. Really PF would be around 688

Difference on these between 25 and 120 yards 242 FPS


The one in the middle

Top one 50 Cal muzzle loader with set triggers. Bottom one is the last rifle JMB designed for Remington, the Model 8 in .35 Remington. FN also manufactured for outside US sales.


All looks and sounds like great fun!


That is some really fine tune loading. Barrel condition and temperatures everything has to be nearly identical. Your pushing a high mark. @albroswift are you shooting long distances. Which I know alot of guys try to meet a 10fps or even 5fps SD when shooting long distance but I aint a super expert but I dare say 200yards with a 20fps SD wouldnt make it not shoot MOA. Or am I wrong ?


I see your using a mix of brass FC and RP :star2:------- :star2: brass I use in everything I have . I will reuse factory Hornady Brass in my .460 though its good brass.


Found this poking around on the percision Rifle Blog

there is a big 5% difference from 20 fps to 15 fps, but only 2.9% improvement from 15 fps to 10 fps, and then just a 1% improvement in hit percentage going from an SD of 10 fps to 3 fps! This is primarily because, once again, most misses at long range are caused by wind and not vertical dispersion. Bryan Litz says “If you’re missing the target for reasons unrelated to vertical dispersion, then reducing vertical dispersion won’t improve hit percentage very much.” Well, it makes a lot sense when you say it that way! You can see what I’m referring to in the shot simulations below. We’re shrinking the vertical spread, but most of our misses are because of the horizontal spread … so we’re simply not addressing the primary cause of the misses.


I am just throwing crap out there for conversation sake :expressionless:


I use Reloader 7 and holy black. Thats it.
I own and make ranchdog’s 430gr .460 boolits, and they are the best Ive found. It molds them from .460-.462. Then I size them down to .460.
Any of the smaller ones get recycle to the furnace.

The cast boolit HAS to be the correct size for your bore. 90% of commerical cast boolits are not sized right.
If yours do not read .460, then they are too small. Mic them.

I have 3 barrels, 22 inch, 26 inch, and 30 inch.
The 30 incher does 1450fps to 1700fps with R7. At 1700rps, that is not the max full charge load, but it is very stout.
I had to crank the load way down, it was doing 1750fps out of the 22 inch barrel. Incinerates car batteries.
Holy black in the 30 inch barrel is around 1150-1200fps. I do BLEEP
and it brings it up to about 1350-1400. Which is right where you want to be. Anywhere from 1450-1650fps is ideal.

According to the guru hold skooled me, at 1450fps a 405gr cast round will penetrate 6 feet of meat. I loves me the 45/70

Quigley waited hours to line up two of them at once :smiley:


Got 200 rounds of new star-line from Druid Hill the other day for better then star-line price, used those for the trail boss loads. I had 20 or so mixed RP/ FC, those were the ones that I used for the hot loads, pretty good SD for mixed brass. Also had 80 rounds of some old WCC 67 .45 M32? M52? brass, had 80 rounds loaded but after firing 9 or 10 found one split and another one that I could see a split forming so I pulled the rest, re-used the bullets, powder, and the primers.


I’ve got some RL7 was going to try but I have lots of Varget and Trail Boss so makes sense to load with that if it works. Gun not comfortable for me shooting 1700fps but the brother insists on max so I shot a few just for comparison. Put a big piece of memory foam between the but and my shoulder. Wasn’t bad with Trail Boss at 1000+, not bad with 40gr Varget at around 1200+. We’ve been shooting the Laser Cast out of both a Perdersoli and the Chiappa/ Armi Sport, no leading and really nice groups and I don’t feel like casting, have way to many other hobbies.
I have probably 500 Remington jacketed 405 gr, and 500 Speer jacketed 400 gr so going to give some of those a try when I run out of laser Cast.


BTW 1750fps with R7 is not the max load. Please post pictures of his arm after 2-3 shots.
This load is 3-4grs less than full. I not use 8-10 grains less.

Ive never split a 45/70 case, even will nasty loads.
I dont use Varget either. Rips up op rods.


I think the brass was old and brittle, it was just the 1000 fps loads. Tarnished color that wouldn’t polish out.

I use varget in the 1895 405 Winchester also, after laddering up a lot of options it worked the best under a 300 gr pill, around 2100+ FPS. Not a bad option for straight walled handloads.

This data 300 gr Hornady Interlocks over Varget.

Last lever action designed by JMB

405 next to a 45-70


Defeating whats best about the 45/70. Anything outside of the 1400-1600fps is self defeating. Shooting pistol weight rounds is not what the caliber was made for.
405 to 540 is where we party. I can throw a 405 over 2000fps. But I like my arm.