Tell me about .45-70

This is a discussion on Tell me about .45-70 within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; So I'm interested in picking up a lever action .45-70 but I don't really know which way I want to go with it. (not really ...

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 25

Thread: Tell me about .45-70

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array raysheen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Maine, USA
    Posts
    793

    Tell me about .45-70

    So I'm interested in picking up a lever action .45-70 but I don't really know which way I want to go with it. (not really a defensive rifle, but this was the closest section that really fit the question) Looks like the following is available in the Marlin line:

    26" bbl 9 shot mag (Cowboy)
    22" bbl 4 shot mag (1895)
    18.5" bbl 4 shot mag (1895 "guide" version)

    Anyone know much about how .45-70 will perform through these barrel lengths? I really like the looks of the guide version but really don't want to mess up a nice round like this if it won't perform well in a shorter barrel. I think I'm leaning away from the cowboy length just because I want something small and light. Will be mostly a "fun" gun but may use it for some hunting. Guess one of my main questions is what will a 300-350gr bullet look like, ballistically speaking, at the 100-150 yard range our of the two shorter barrels? Anyone know the bullet drop between 25, 50, 100, and 150?

    Ammo prices are just plain scary though ($23-$35 per 20)...anyone know where I could find some halfway decent brass that won't cost me an arm and a leg? I can cast my own bullets and have lots of lead so that would leave powder as my main shooting expense for one.

    Thanks in advance for any and all help!

  2. Remove Ads

  3. #2
    Assistant Administrator
    Array P95Carry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    South West PA
    Posts
    25,482
    Oh my - one of my faves!!

    Where to start. Amazingly this cartridge has been around since what? 1873 was it? Still going strong. Give me a minute and I'll drop back to add some stuff.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I started off with just 20 rounds of Rem stuff - which is whimpy because it is bottom end loading safe for trap door rifles. Now, I shoot this stuff thru my BFR revo - 8" barrel and I can hit a steel plate at 100 every time. For rifle I invested in a Ruger #1 - tough as nails and will digest the hot loads - but even that is shortish in barrel at 22". I think the 'guide'' gun will use the round very well.

    Re drop, ballistics etc ... I'd have to look this up - you may find one of the web calculators that'll tell you what you need to know. I load mine with 405's (mostly Lasercast) and of course here we are talking relatively heavy and slow - so drop is very significant compared with say a 150 from .308. That said, I would happily use the rifle out to 200 but just being sure I set sights to suit - mine is usually 100 zero.

    This round really does merit reloading - more than many. Cost yes is prohibitive but some hot loads are available at a price from Buffalo Bore IIRC - maybe Black Hills does some.

    I split loads into three categories . low pressure 25,000 are the safe for trapdoor. Mid range at 30,000 are good for BFR, in fact I load a bit higher than that. Then top end for toughies like #1 - 35,000 and those are bruisers!!! I bought 200 Starline cases and they are excellent brass - worth the investment.

    These are the 405's ... and below that the recently completed reloading of some.





    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

  4. #3
    VIP Member Array Redneck Repairs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    5,133
    The 45-70 will provide a trajectory like a rainbow , no matter the barrel , and to a degree no matter the rifling twist it will tend to shoot well at extended ranges , as you get below 22" or so ( so as to not fully burn the charge ) the rainbow gets steeper . I will almost garontee you tho that even out of a 16" tube the 45-70 will be more accurate than you can be at 500 yards . If you have need of one buy the formfactor you need , and then shoot it to decide your range , and the drop at any extended range .
    Make sure you get full value out of today , Do something worthwhile, because what you do today will cost you one day off the rest of your life .
    We only begin to understand folks after we stop and think .

    Criminals are looking for victims, not opponents.

  5. #4
    Moderator
    Array bmcgilvray's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    9,419
    I love the .45-70, even out of the Trapdoor. I use a light load of IMR4759 with a 405 grain cast bullet which my M1884 loves to shoot off the bench at 100 yards. Chronographs about 1350 FPS from the Trapdoor. I also use the same load as a light load in a Winchester Model 1886 .45-90. Sort of like firing .38 Special in a .357 Magnum.

    The .45-70 is certain death on the small Texas whitetails around here.

    My brother-in-law has a Marlin guide gun in .45-70. He lulled me into complacency by giving me some mild factory loads to shoot. While I was having fun with them he slipped in some wild concoction that gave the same appearance as the factory fodder. It surely rattled the fillings in my teeth when I touched it off. Such loads would be great for anything in North America.

  6. #5
    Senior Member Array raysheen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Maine, USA
    Posts
    793
    oh great...thanks guys...all I need is this kind of encouragement!

    seriously though thanks very much for the info! Anyone know what the largest practical bullet you could use is in something like the Marlin gun would be? I'm guessing it's not as big as some of the singles can shoot? As you can see I haven't looked up much reloading data on them yet. thanks again for all of the information. I've always wanted a 45-70 now I just have to find out how to pay for one ahhh so many guns so little money

  7. #6
    Senior Member Array raysheen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Maine, USA
    Posts
    793
    emailed my father-in-law the same questions...here is his response...wow, I don't even know what to say!

    I got so the only cartridge gun I would shoot was a 45-70. I have had many
    and shot everything in them – black power mostly but I know some reduced
    pistol power loads that are tack drivers out to 50 yards and even do pretty
    well at 100. Got some stuff you can have if you get into it. Also have a
    custom rebuilt original 45-70 #1 Remington rolling block you can have if you want it.
    I will never use it. Safe with any black power and reduced
    smokeless loads. Let me know. I can send you some pictures of it if you want.

  8. #7
    Assistant Administrator
    Array P95Carry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    South West PA
    Posts
    25,482
    John - sounds like you may have lucked out

    It is true in fact - a good many 45-70 folks do still load them as black powder - a guy on THR does just that and gets great performance. Only downside for me is the extra cleaning aspect.

    Bullet size? Well for me the 405 is my ideal choice but, there are loads published for 350 and 500 grain. I'd say 500 was about tops probably.
    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

  9. #8
    Senior Member Array raysheen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Maine, USA
    Posts
    793
    Quote Originally Posted by P95Carry View Post
    John - sounds like you may have lucked out

    It is true in fact - a good many 45-70 folks do still load them as black powder - a guy on THR does just that and gets great performance. Only downside for me is the extra cleaning aspect.

    Bullet size? Well for me the 405 is my ideal choice but, there are loads published for 350 and 500 grain. I'd say 500 was about tops probably.
    Thanks again Chris! I couldn't believe that email! The father-in-law is a very nice guy as you can tell....he's a big muzzle loader fan. OK one more question for you! (or anyone for that matter) I've never reloaded black powder in a case before. I'm guessing there are precautions that have to be taken above that of "regular" smokless loads. I'm not opposed to the idea (well...except for the cleaning aspect like you) I just would like to know what kinds of additional safeguards would be needed to safely reload in this style. Wow getting excited about this now...something new to learn and have some fun with...have wanted one of these for a while now...now I just have to find a way to pay him back for his generosity.

  10. #9
    Assistant Administrator
    Array P95Carry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    South West PA
    Posts
    25,482
    I have not loaded with the ''Holy Black'' but I am thinking one rule may well apply as per front-stuffers. That is - not to leave space between the powder and the projectile.

    On that basis the possibility of modifying charge weight may be difficult, altho choice between fg ffg and fffg (degrees of BP milling particle size) could alter pressures enough to modify. The ''70'' in 45-70 is IIRC the old BP load in grains and again IIRC behind a 45 cal 405 or 400 grain pill.

    Do try some web searching - I'll bet there is some very good extra info out there, if you can find it.
    Chris - P95
    NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.

    "To own a gun and assume that you are armed
    is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."


    http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.

  11. #10
    Member Array past60's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    michigan
    Posts
    74
    The original loads for the military were 45/70 - 500 for the rifle and 45/55 - 405 for the carbines (Custer's round). Long range shots for the Creedmore competitions were well in excess of 1000 yards with impressive accuracy and even good penetration.

  12. #11
    Distinguished Member Array USPnTX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    1,759
    Thumbs up for the .45-70. It is a great round and I love my Marlin Guide Gun. I haven't reloaded for it yet but am planning on it for whitetail this October. I have had good luck however with the Black Hills ammo out to 200 yards. Its a 405 grain bullet with 1,250 fps. Very effective on whitetail and javelina. It definitely shoots a rainbow but when that 405 grain bullet hits it target - its lights out.
    "Do not fear those who disagree with you; fear those that do and are too cowardly to admit it" - Napoleon

  13. #12
    Distinguished Member Array Doc Holliday's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Georgia
    Posts
    1,675
    Quote Originally Posted by bmcgilvray View Post
    The .45-70 is certain death on the small Texas whitetails around here.
    Not really contributing to the discussion but this brought back a couple of memories for me about the .45-70 that I want to share:

    I took my first whitetail with a Marlin .45-70. It was loaned to me by the Dad of the girl that I dated in high school and part of college. I was 18 and this man was kind enough to take me under his wing and teach me about shooting and hunting.

    Funny story. The first time I went to pick his daughter up for a date he showed me that rifle. Being a naive 16 year old I looked at it and said "That's a nice .30-30." He smiled and then ejected a shell out it. My eyes were as big as silver dollars. I asked "What do you hunt with that thing, elephants?" He just laughed....I got the message.

    He did have an even larger round that I got to shoot later on, a .458 Win Mag! Talk about recoil.....I can still feel it 11 years later.
    Why Ike, whatever do you mean? Maybe poker's just not your game Ike. I know! Let's have a spelling contest!

  14. #13
    Senior Member Array raysheen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Maine, USA
    Posts
    793
    Thanks once again to everyone for all of the information! I really appreciate it!

  15. #14
    Moderator
    Array bmcgilvray's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    9,419
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc Holliday View Post
    Not really contributing to the discussion but this brought back a couple of memories for me about the .45-70 that I want to share:

    I took my first whitetail with a Marlin .45-70. It was loaned to me by the Dad of the girl that I dated in high school and part of college. I was 18 and this man was kind enough to take me under his wing and teach me about shooting and hunting.

    Funny story. The first time I went to pick his daughter up for a date he showed me that rifle. Being a naive 16 year old I looked at it and said "That's a nice .30-30." He smiled and then ejected a shell out it. My eyes were as big as silver dollars. I asked "What do you hunt with that thing, elephants?" He just laughed....I got the message.

    He did have an even larger round that I got to shoot later on, a .458 Win Mag! Talk about recoil.....I can still feel it 11 years later.
    Good contribution actually. It's fun to read others' stories. The question I have for you is: did you marry the girl?

  16. #15
    Distinguished Member Array Doc Holliday's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Georgia
    Posts
    1,675
    Quote Originally Posted by bmcgilvray View Post
    Good contribution actually. It's fun to read others' stories. The question I have for you is: did you marry the girl?
    Nope, it didn't work out. I did marry a great lady though and have a wonderful son.
    Why Ike, whatever do you mean? Maybe poker's just not your game Ike. I know! Let's have a spelling contest!

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Links

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Search tags for this page

45-70 hunting stories

,
45-70 silhouette loads
,

45-79 ammo

,
45-79 rifle
,
marlin 1895 cb
,

marlin 1895 cowboy

,
marlin 1895 cowboy 45-70
,
marlin 1895ss
,
marlin 45-79
,
marlin cowboy 45 70
,

ruger no 1

,
what does a 45-70 bullet look like
Click on a term to search for related topics.