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Thread: 45-70 Gov't

  1. #1
    Plinker

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    45-70 Gov't

    Looking to start casting and loading 45-70 Gov't for my son's new Marlin lever gun. Any words of wisdom out there?

  2. #2
    Grandmaster 42769vette's Avatar

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    Tag for interest.

    I just got a 45-70 Quigley Sharps.
    "You don't have to spend a fortune to play the game, but you do have to spend your money wisely"

    owner/ operator of www.aaoptics.com

    full line vortex dealer

    contact me at alan@aaoptics.com

  3. #3
    Plinker

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    Just came in from running 20 rnds through this rifle. Shoots well, pretty to look at and leaves really big holes in tomato juice cans. My son wants to put a scope on it and use it for deer hunting this fall. I'm looking forward to working up some rounds that will work well in this gun. There's just something about lever guns.

  4. #4
    Tired Of Winning

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    Done, done, and Iím on to the next one...
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  5. #5
    Grandmaster

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    I've reloaded a wide variety of ammo for a 45/70 before and there's a wide variety you can do. You can get hard cast gas checked bullets that meant to do nothing more than separate flesh from soul on anything that was given the breath of life on this planet and your shoulder will hate every round of it you fire. You can also load up rounds that punch holes in paper just fine at any distance that feel like a little kitty just patted you on the shoulder.

    If it were me, I'd make two different loads. One for deer hunting, and one for cheap plinking. For plinking go with something cheap and easy on your shoulder. For deer hunting I'd go with the 300gr or 350gr weight class and run it fast because there's a whole lot of drop in a 45/70 even in short distances that most people aren't used to. One option you're going to hear about is hornady leverolution ammo and beware I think they still make the factory brass for that round a touch shorter than standard dimension brass. It's only an issue if you plan to reload it with anything other than the leverolution type bullets. I'd recommend starline brass otherwise.

  6. #6
    Tired Of Winning

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    Dunno if this is of interest, but I've been buying sale bullets from this outfit fairly regularly:

    45-70 Govt Unprimed Brass
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    Done, done, and Iím on to the next one...
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  7. #7
    Grandmaster Leadeye's Avatar

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    Like teddy12b says, lots of variety in the 45-70. I would pick a mold between 350 and 400 grains if you are going to get just one. Big cavity molds fill out better if you cast them when the pot is full if you are using a bottom pour like the Lee. I would consider a gas check mold if you are going to stay at 350 grain and below.

    The 500 grain bullets are pretty heavy for the relatively light weight Marlin, even a stout 400 grain load is going to wake you up.
    Where's the Kaboom? There was supposed to be an earth shattering Kaboom.

    Marvin the Martian

  8. #8
    Marksman Nazgul's Avatar

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    Cast my own bullets for 4 different 4570's, my favorite rifle round.

    I settled on a 420 gr FNPB- flat nose plain base (no gas check). Use a 45 caliber cardboard wad under the bullet. I load it to 1400-1800 fps depending on application.

    I have bullet molds from 350 gr to 540 grain, even several for paper patching. They all work and are cheap/fun to shoot.

    Very versatile round. Have fun!!

    Don

  9. #9
    Plinker

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    Thanks all for the help. The stuff we shot up today was cowboy action ammo, 405 grain hardcast. It had very little recoil. I will probably look for a bullet mold in the 350-ish range. Never used a cardboard wad before, I may have to try that. How do you punch those out? Any powder recommendations? Thanks again.

  10. #10
    Marksman Nazgul's Avatar

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    There are wad punches available online. Arch punches are cheap. Molds can be inexpensive and work, the bullet needs to fit the throat and be .002-.003" over the groove diameter.

    Powder/loads are in all the manuals. It is a very versatile cartridge with tons of load data.

    Don

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