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Thread: .50-90

  1. #1
    Boolit Mold
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    Sep 2017
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    Bucks County, Pennsylvania
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    .50-90

    Hi. I am new to the forum. Thanks for having me. I am thinking of buying a High Wall in .50-90.

    I currently reload for my Wesson and Harrington 1871 Buffalo Special .45-70.
    My question is, can you/does anyone load smokeless rounds for this caliber, .50-90?

    I have never loaded BPRC before and if I don't have to, I won't, no disrespect intended.

    Thanks for your retorts.

  2. #2
    Boolit Master swamp's Avatar
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    Mar 2010
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    Denver, CO
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    I load smokeless for my 50-140. The Accurate loading manual lists loads for the 50-90.

    swamp
    There is no problem so great, that it cannot be solved by the proper application of high explosives.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    I would not load smokeless in either the 50/90 or the 50/140, these cases are way to big and over half the case would be empty. I have used the 50/90 Sharps alot, for both hunting and target work, and it gets a full case of Swiss 1 1/2fg only.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master corbinace's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forum Warden.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master


    Crash_Corrigan's Avatar
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    I have a Winchester 1885 in 50-90 Sharbs by Miroku in Japan. It is a BPCR rifle and only blackpowder is to be used in it. I load a 695 Gr. boolit over a felt wad and up to 102 gr of Swiss 1 1/2 powder. I am still developing a better loading as the recoil is not something to be taken lightly. I expect a lighter boolit would be easier on the shoulder. I lube the cases by the dip method whereby unlubed boolits are set up standing in a silicone tray and hot lube is poured into the pan to such a level that the lube groove is covered. Then the pan w/boolits is allowed to cool. Then the boolits are removed carefully from the pan. It is messy but effective and cheap.

    It is a hoot to shoot at a steel target way out there and then when the slow boolit (1250 FPS) finally slams into the steel you get to hear the C L A N G! !
    some seconds after your shot but before the smoke clears. It is best to shoot into a cross wind as this will blow away the smoke fast. A dead calm day is not very good as you will be surrounded by clouds of white and smelly smoke.

    You will come home stinking and your wife/girlfriend/significant other might demand you get undressed in the garage and immediately shower and shampoo cuz you are not coming into this house/apartment/tent/shack/room to stink up the joint and what is that awful smell?

    Blackpowder shooting is another world and it is addictive.
    Pax Nobiscum Dan (Crash) Corrigan

    Currently casting, reloading and shooting: 223 Rem, 6.5x55 Sweede, 30 Carbine, 30-06, 30-30 WCF, 7.62x39, 327 Fed Mag, 303 Brit., 32WS, 7.92x57, 38 Spcl, 357 Mag, ,380 ACP. 9x19, 38-55 Win, 41 Mag, 44 Spcl., 44 Mag, 45 Colt, 45 ACP, 454 Casull, 457 RB for ROA and 50-90 Sharps.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master

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    Accurate claims their 5744 can be used in the .50-90, though I didn't find data for it on their website. You might start your quest their, as it is a good powder for that general sort of large-volume, low-pressure kind of project.

    Hodgdon Triple 7 is another answer. As a black powder substitute, it's intended to behave a lot like the real thing, but it is MUCH better behaved in terms of clean up. Rubbing alcohol on the brush works well and quickly. Use that in place of the Hoppe's or Shooter's Choice you'd use for smokeless, patch it dry, and finish up with a film of something rust-preventive.

    A .50-90 would be a lot of fun. I have found milk jug busting with the .50-70 to be very grin-inducing. Due to the low velocity, you can usually recover from recoil in time to watch the very considerable impact. I usually find myself inserting the following commentary: BOOOM! "Waaait for it. . ." SPLAT!
    WWJMBD?

    Buried in molds until covered with mold.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master OlDeuce's Avatar
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    You might see if you can find a load using WW748........It's a full case smokeless powder with low pressure !! The more I use it the Better I like it! a bit durty

    Ol Deuce
    Do the Best with What you have !

  8. #8
    Boolit Master Dan Cash's Avatar
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    Why in the world do folks insist upon getting these great old boomers and then trying to make them work with smokeless when it is so easily done with black powder. Difficult cleanup of black is a pure myth. A great big cartridge case with just a dab of smokeless is an invitation to a disaster party and the emergency room. I have been shooting BPCR matches for several years and have have been on hand when two rifles gave up with supposed safe smokeless loads. I have never seen or heard of one letting go with black powder.
    To paraphrase Ronald Reagan, the trouble with many shooting experts is not that they're ignorant; its just that they know so much that isn't so.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check