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Thread: New to me H&R HandiRifle

  1. #21
    Boolit Master
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    Pull them bullets and dump the powder safely outside in a hole, water it in. With that rifle, pull that sight off, get some cowboy loads, and have fun on the range, deer hunting, hog hunting, etc. 45-70 don't need souped up, and lemme tell you the H&Rs shoot it good, but you gonna feel every extra ounce of omph a round has in it.

    God Bless, and One Love.

    GoodOlBoy
    Yes I can be long winded. Yes I follow rabbit trails. Yes I admit when I am wrong. Your mileage may vary.

    Keep your powder dry. Watch yer Top knot.

    "Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition!"

    Yes there were "Short" 45 Colts! http://www.leverguns.com/articles/taylor/45_short_colt.htm

  2. #22
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    One effective way to prevent re-use of unknown powder is to dissolve the unknown powder in just enough Acetone to make a thick paste. An ice cube sized blob of that's sorta fun to toss in a camp fire, burns rather hot but not really a good fire starter (for that it'd need to burn slower...) I don't usually have a garden in my current living situation so this prevents someone being an idiot

  3. #23
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Traffer View Post
    After comparing it to these powders on this website, there is no doubt which powder it is IMR 4320...
    http://www.ilrc.ucf.edu/powders/search.php
    I think that youíre most likely right about which powder it is, but you donít know how meticulous the reloaded was and thatís a pretty stout load relative to what you want anyway. Odds are 99.9% that youíll be just fine, but there is a slight chance that youíll lose an eye, or worse, and for what to save $10 in powder?

    Know a guy that reloaded a bunch of pistol rounds, took a break, then loaded some .308 on the same press. Heíd run the powder measure down when loading pistol, it was the end of a can so heíd thrown it away, and ultimately he forgot to dump the last little bit that was down in the mechanism before he poured in his rifle powder. He didnít notice it when checking his charge weight, but his brain just happened to note that the powder looked wrong as he was setting rifle bullets. Things happen.

    Besides, I donít like the look of the coating on the bullet, that it peeled off when you took it apart is not great, and I donít like the crimp on the cartridge.

    Anyway, good luck with whatever you decide to do, but if you do decide to shoot some of these please take video just in case something exciting happens.

  4. #24
    Boolit Master
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    @JimB...
    Thanks Jim,
    I do not want a stout load. Had a friend run this load through:
    Quickload Predicted Ballistics for a 22” Barrel

    400 gr LRF / 48.0 gr IMR 4320 / 2.550 OAL

    25564 psi / 1621 fps / 2333 ft-lb / 78.3% Burn / 92.7% Fill
    I am a cheapskate! I will reuse this powder! I may even reuse the boolits BUT, thinking about turning hollow bases into them on the lathe to make them lighter...Maybe in the 300 to 320 grain range. Then work up a load with IMR 4320 for that to give me about 1100 FPS (might as well keep it subsonic) That should still be plenty of punch for deer at 100 yards. I know a lot of people are aghast at my bold and daring approach. YUP, that's me, livin on the edge.
    AKA hans.pcguy

  5. #25
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Traffer View Post
    @JimB...
    Thanks Jim,
    I do not want a stout load. Had a friend run this load through:
    Quickload Predicted Ballistics for a 22” Barrel

    400 gr LRF / 48.0 gr IMR 4320 / 2.550 OAL

    25564 psi / 1621 fps / 2333 ft-lb / 78.3% Burn / 92.7% Fill
    I am a cheapskate! I will reuse this powder! I may even reuse the boolits BUT, thinking about turning hollow bases into them on the lathe to make them lighter...Maybe in the 300 to 320 grain range. Then work up a load with IMR 4320 for that to give me about 1100 FPS (might as well keep it subsonic) That should still be plenty of punch for deer at 100 yards. I know a lot of people are aghast at my bold and daring approach. YUP, that's me, livin on the edge.
    Look into the 320g .460 mold from miha, or if your gun likes .458 give the 320g Lazer-cast bullets a try. I haven’t looked, but you’ll want to model the lighter bullet over IMR4320, pressure will be less and burn rate might really suck.

  6. #26
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimB.. View Post
    Look into the 320g .460 mold from miha, or if your gun likes .458 give the 320g Lazer-cast bullets a try. I haven’t looked, but you’ll want to model the lighter bullet over IMR4320, pressure will be less and burn rate might really suck.
    yeah, the burn rate is already questionable. ...Oh Well
    AKA hans.pcguy

  7. #27
    Boolit Master
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    Have a Handi-Rifle in 45-70 shoot it a lot with light bullets and Trail Boss powder.
    The load does not kick much and is accurate out to 100 yards. Have Williams peep sights on the rifle, the rear sight has a lot of adjustment to get on target at different ranges.
    Trail Boss powder works well with the 45-70 cartridge.

  8. #28
    Boolit Buddy JoeJames's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kungfustyle View Post
    YOU CANT GUESS WHAT THE POWDER IS BASED ON WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE!!!!! Unless you want to disassemble your gun, face and hands. Just put it on the plants outside and get on with life. We are all thrifty, that's why we reload, but don't be so cheep that you risk. Just my 2 cents.
    Agree 100% - Lord a'mercy!

  9. #29
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoeJames View Post
    Agree 100% - Lord a'mercy!
    OK, I'm going to explain this one more time. This time with a little more clarity.
    The guy I bought the gun from was certainly honest and forthright. He gave me his name etc., even where he worked. He loaded the cartridges himself. Used many of them. He couldn't remember offhand which IMR powder he used but it definitely was IMR Powder. I went to the forensic powder identification website where the Law enforcement, FBI and others go to identify unknown gun powders. I searched for powders that looked identical to this with the same measurements. I measured some of the particles of powder. They were .083mm wide and from 1.1mm and 1.3mm long. Obviously there are some in there outside of those parameters but that was the majority of the sizes. I am including a picture that I made of a screenshot with my powder on the left and the picture of IMR 4320 from the forensic website on the left. Maybe those of you who are afraid to attempt to identify powders like this can learn something from this.
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMR4320comparison.jpg 
Views:	19 
Size:	66.1 KB 
ID:	227158
    AKA hans.pcguy

  10. #30
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by curator View Post
    I second the opinion to pull down the cartridges with unknown powder. For the Handi-Rifle in .45-70, powders like 5744, 4198, and 3031 work great with cast boolits weighing from 300 to 450 grains. My Handi-.45-70 likes .460" boolits and leads like crazy with anything smaller regardless of lube or hardness. The Handi is pretty light for a heavy boolit rifle like the .45-70 so some extra weight helps with accuracy. I put a one pound lead weight in the butt stock bolt hole to help tame the recoil. This made the rifle a lot more fun to shoot and reduced my tendency to flinch in anticipation which improved my accuracy.
    Thanks for that great advise. I just finally ran some patches through the barrel and sure enough ...lead mining. This has convinced me to take all 40 cartridges and pull them. Might as well dump the IMR 4320 powder and get something decent for this rig. I want to make the boolits fatter. They measure .458"
    I have a couple of questions:
    I am a rank amature at actuall reloading. I have spent the past three years working exclusively on 22lr. I am not sure what dies I will need for reloading these cartridges. They appear to have either a very slight crimp or none at all. The bullets pull easily with a kinetic puller. I could easily expand the mouths of these by hand. I would like to put a crimp on them when I load them.
    My intention is to clean the bullets in alcohol then powder coat them with two coats of Smokes. (which is a pretty thick powder).
    I will probably have to size them to .460. I can make a push sizer for that. I want to keep my costs as very low as possible. So what other dies would you suggest I purchase for the rest. I don't plan on doing a lot of plinking with it. I may only shoot the 40 cartridges that I got with it and maybe reload them once or twice and that will be it. So I don't want to invest a lot into reloading tools for it.
    As usual all advise from anyone is appreciated... that's why I'm here.
    AKA hans.pcguy

  11. #31
    Boolit Mold
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    Quote Originally Posted by Texas by God View Post
    I'm danger mouse as they come and I would throw away that powder. I'm with the leave them primed group. The correct charge of Unique and learn the gun and have fun at the same time. Save the kickers for someday if you think you need them. I had a 45-70 Shikari and it was a great gun. Used to ring a 2" vent pipe at a spillway from 200 yds sitting with slow 405 grs!
    I still have my Shikari. Bought new in the '70s. Back then the only rounds available were 405 grains. Very pleasant to shoot. I think I would like to go back to something similar.

    The Shikari has very plain and clear iron sights which still work well with my aging eyes.

  12. #32
    Boolit Buddy

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    My 2 cents here:

    I have a HandiRifle in 45-70, actually have 3 barrels in that caliber. My "practice load" is the same as Doug Matthews' from his book Forty Years with the 45-70 - 16 gr Unique under the RCBS 45-300-FNGC. Very mild load and yet quite accurate at 50-75 yds. I've shot stiffer loads such as 25gr 5744 behind 405gr bullet (cast & jacketed). Have gone on to shoot 45gr 3031/405 bullet...that one is closer to a Marlin load and will get your attention but have shot it several times. Not trecommending this by any means, just telling you what I've done.

    I'm like these other guys, I'd never shoot somebody else's loads unless I knew & trusted them extremely well.

    You got a great deal on the HR - enjoy it!

  13. #33
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by dlbarr View Post
    My 2 cents here:

    I have a HandiRifle in 45-70, actually have 3 barrels in that caliber. My "practice load" is the same as Doug Matthews' from his book Forty Years with the 45-70 - 16 gr Unique under the RCBS 45-300-FNGC. Very mild load and yet quite accurate at 50-75 yds. I've shot stiffer loads such as 25gr 5744 behind 405gr bullet (cast & jacketed). Have gone on to shoot 45gr 3031/405 bullet...that one is closer to a Marlin load and will get your attention but have shot it several times. Not trecommending this by any means, just telling you what I've done.

    I'm like these other guys, I'd never shoot somebody else's loads unless I knew & trusted them extremely well.

    You got a great deal on the HR - enjoy it!
    Thank You. That is very helpful.
    I have since cleaned lead out of the barrel and cleaned up the gun. It also came with a Bushnell Red Dot scope with a rail.
    The scope was either camo from the factory and painted black over that or black from the factory ...painted camo color and painted black over that. I cleaned all the paint off with a Qtip and acetone. Now it looks correct.
    I am looking forward to using this gun. I guess I will buy a set of Lee Dies and a pound of Unique. I will make up light loads for plinking and a few hotter loads for deer. (If I ever go again)
    Having the tools to make my own molds and swaging dies, I will probably make a mold and some swaging dies (lead swaging only).
    I assume that this gun will shoot NOGroove powder coated boolets.
    AKA hans.pcguy

  14. #34
    I feed two 45-70 handis. My advice is to slug your bore. One of mine runs best with Bullets at .461 and the the other shoots 459 well. Depending on when it was made these run all over the map on bore dimensions. I tend to shoot a fair amount of 3031 in mine behind a pp and greaser 405s. Nothing I shoot goes faster than 1500-1600fps anymore, I just don't need it too.

  15. #35
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by firebyprolong View Post
    I feed two 45-70 handis. My advice is to slug your bore. One of mine runs best with Bullets at .461 and the the other shoots 459 well. Depending on when it was made these run all over the map on bore dimensions. I tend to shoot a fair amount of 3031 in mine behind a pp and greaser 405s. Nothing I shoot goes faster than 1500-1600fps anymore, I just don't need it too.
    You shoot pp in a handi? Is it the 22" barrel unit? I didn't think that patching would be of any advantage in a short barrel?
    AKA hans.pcguy

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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