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Thread: 45-70 for competition?

  1. #41
    Boolit Mold
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    Thundermaker
    If you were to ask my opinion I would tell you to read on this forum and the historic shooting forum distantthunder's (Jim Kluskins) posts detailing dual diameter paper patch bullets. The chamber/throat relationship you are likely to find in that Pedersoli would lend it self very well to that style of bullet. I would also suggest you check out threads in the paper patch forum and look at the bore pigs many of us are using to wipe with. Also a delrin rod to push the pigs through.
    There are many paths to get to where you want to go but this would be my suggestion as a good starting place.
    My son Daniel and I have been shooting paper patch 45-70 exclusively in matches for several years with great results. Where they really shine is when the wind kicks up.

    Todd

  2. #42
    Boolit Master Randy C's Avatar
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    It sounds like he's getting a good game plan together by trying 3 different style loads. I may have been doing it the hard way,,I'm going to try PP this year to see if its more accurate. some one is sending me some. I'm hoping my old moulds works the best, Ive never tried PP it might be faster and cleaner shooting,, lubing and sizing bullets can be messier and a pain in the *** some times.

  3. #43
    Boolit Buddy
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    A local farmer has just begun a 1 mile charity shoot, and it has my wheels turning, although I don't know if I can cram enough power in that case to get me there, even with pp bullets. It doesn't help that most mold manufacturers don't publish B.C. data for their designs.

  4. #44
    Boolit Master wills's Avatar
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    .45-70 At Two Miles

    http://home.earthlink.net/~sharpssht...SandyHook.html

    THE SHOOTER at the heavy bench rest squinted as he aligned his .45-70 Allin-Springfield Model 1873 Army rifle on the distant target. The rifle fore-stock and barrel was cradled in a rest; the butt was supported by his shoulder. The rear sight was flipped up to its full height, so with no stock support for his head, the rifle tester from Springfield Armory worked carefully to align high rear and low muzzle sight on the speck that was the target - a surveyed 2,500 yards distant.

    Holding his breath, he squeezed the 7-pound trigger. The rifle fired, and some 15 seconds later, signals from the target indicated that his shot had struck well inside the 6-foot diameter bullseye on a target well over a mile away!
    Last edited by wills; 01-21-2019 at 03:35 PM.
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  5. #45
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by wills View Post
    Yes, but lobbing a bullet just to see how far it will fly is different from trying to hit a 2' square target. The tallest available tang sight for a sharps has 414 MOA of elevation adjustment. According to my ballistic calculator, at the velocities that at 45/70 is capable of with black powder, it would require a bullet with a B.C. of at least .383. Otherwise, the rear sight won't have enough elevation.

  6. #46
    Boolit Grand Master

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    Thundermaker, There are programs online that will figure bc of a given bullet, all you need are the velocity at 2 distances for the bullet. Given good numbers they can be very accurate. Then a ballistics program with the BC and velocity will give you sight come ups and height above target at a given range ( I have done this at 200 yds for a 1000yd zero on a 308). A tall target with an aiming bull at the bottom and one at the correct height allows a rough zero to be put on the rifle.

    If you think you need more elevation with the rear ladder a spacer block can be made up ( 1/2" or 3/4" tall) with the sights hole spacing staggered to gain some more elevation on the rear sight. But with it in place you may not zero at 200 yds.

    Also going to these extended ranges may require adjusting the angle of the staff slightly to see a round aperture hole. A front sight that's angled helps also. Another plus is a padd for the cheek piece to raise head up to the sights when extended this tall.

  7. #47
    Boolit Master

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    Kenny Wasserberger does a Mile Shoot on his ranch once a year. He has written it up in great detail on the Shiloh forum. I remember he wrote the number of MOAs needed to reach a mile-distant target over a 1000-yd one somewhere in his descriptions. He himself uses a .45-2+7/8” rifle, but some of the shooters use other charges; you’d have to read the thread and draw your own conclusions as to what will work at that range.

    I think it was entitled “Trends in Long-Range Target Shooting,” or something like that.

  8. #48
    Boolit Master Randy C's Avatar
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    I like what country gent said you could put a spacer under your sites that would allow you to zero any where you want.

  9. #49
    Boolit Grand Master Don McDowell's Avatar
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    Most of the folks that shoot the "Mile Match" use an extension on their MVA sights. It's about 3 inches long, it attaches on the bottom in place of the eye disc, and has a hole on the top that it threaded to accept the eye disc. Save a lot of messing around trying to build a tall enough block to go under the sight.
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  10. #50
    Boolit Buddy
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    I'm going to have to buy a new tang sight anyway. The one that came on it looks like something someone made out of hardware store parts in their garage. There's very little windage available, and the elevation screw can be wiggled about 1/8" vertically. Since I have to buy one, I might as well get the MVA xlr sight, as it will do anything I would ever need. It has enough elevation to get me to a mile with most of the bullets commonly used in long range bpcr shooting, including the 500 gr "government" bullet, with plenty of elevation range left over.

    My current game plan is to start out with the 545gr NASA bullet from old west moulds. It has a relatively high BC, and it's designed to load out long. According to my ballistics program, I can launch it at 1100fps (just below the sound barrier) and get it to 1 mile with 387 MOA of drop from a 100 yard zero. IF that bullet remains stable at that velocity, it would be ideal, because the bullet would never go transonic. At least that's the theory. I'll have fun figuring it out. I may start a "journey of a mile" thread to document the process if it starts to get interesting.

  11. #51
    Boolit Master
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    Two miles was 3500yds when I went to school.......2500yds is about 1 1/2 miles.,and for 1 mile ,I would estimate a line of flight rising to 200 feet elevation..............instead of wind flags ,you are going to need weather balloons.......incidentally,this is the theory behind left hand rifling twist...........at extreme ranges the nose of the bullet tends to dip,and so the ballistic shape of the bullet is preserved,if the bullet stays coaxial with the rifle bore ,it has a sideways component added to drag.....RH twist is said to cause the bullet to tilt upwards at the nose,exaggerating the effect.

  12. #52
    Boolit Buddy
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    One mile is 1760 yards. According to the calculator, a 10 mph full value wind will cause a shift of 20 moa, which is 0.81 MOA more than a .308 with a 175gr matchking at 2600 fps, which is the lake city match load.

    Of course, it's just a calculator. The only way to know for sure is to try it.

  13. #53
    Boolit Master
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    Don't too much about transitioning to subsonic. Pretty much no one is shooting LR with black powder rifles with bullets going that slowly. Most go the other way and push them a lot harder to minimize vertical dispersion. These bullets aren't like the typical boattail that gets crazy wobbly going transonic.

    Hitting a 2'x2' plate at a mile is a lofty goal for a BPCR rifle. That's about the size of the ten ring on the 1000 yard target. Hitting that with reasonable consistency at 1000 would put you in the top ranks of the master class. The main problem is just trying to read the wind well enough to get the job done.

    It'll be interesting to hear how it goes though!

    Chris.

  14. #54
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gunlaker View Post
    Hitting a 2'x2' plate at a mile is a lofty goal for a BPCR rifle.
    As we found out a couple weeks ago, it's a lofty goal with anything. It took 27 shooters all day to hit it once with high dollar precision rifles. One guy finally hit it with a 6.5 creedmore. Another hit it later with a 300 win mag.

    As you say, the wind is the killer. Even with a 300 win mag, you get 16 MOA of wind drift in at 10mph. That's 23' and change. A light breeze could be the difference between a hit and a miss.

    The fact is, a mile is a long way, no matter what you're shooting. It's going to be fun trying to get there.

  15. #55
    Boolit Master
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    Yeah I imagine it would be tricky . I've never shot past 1000 yards, and I'm sure that the difficulty keeps going up. Conditions must have been a bit tricky if it took that long to get hits with a 300 win mag. If you look at the results that Kenny posts for his mile shoot, the large capacity cases seem to have a big advantage.

    Chris.

  16. #56
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gunlaker View Post
    Yeah I imagine it would be tricky . I've never shot past 1000 yards, and I'm sure that the difficulty keeps going up. Conditions must have been a bit tricky if it took that long to get hits with a 300 win mag. If you look at the results that Kenny posts for his mile shoot, the large capacity cases seem to have a big advantage.

    Chris.
    Mostly it was the fact that we were shooting at a time of day when the temperature was rapidly changing. It went from 50° to 71° over the course of 2 hours (ahh, Georgia. If you don't like the weather, just wait a few hours. It'll change). It really threw people for a loop.

    I'm sure a 45/110 or a 50/90 would be better, but I stumbled upon this 45/70 for a steal, and I want to make the most of it.

  17. #57
    Boolit Master Lead pot's Avatar
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    Don't worry about staying under 1100 fps to reach a mile. If I can hit a full sized iron Buffalo several times after finding the sight setting and hold off at 1585 yards in a good breeze using my .44-77 with Lawrence barrel sights that does not have windage adjustment capability shooting a original sharps bullet at 485 gr your .45-70 with a long enough tang sight will make the mile in fine shape at 1250 fps plus. I can pick up dust in the corn field past a mile with the barrel sights.

    You will be better off shooting a bullet with a lower BC with a black powder cartridge rifle, they hold stability better than a long nosed sharp pointed high BC at extended ranges. I don't think I could see a 2' square target at a mile with barrel or tang sights. When you shoot with those guys with them using their .300 win mags and high powered scopes and hit that iron with your black powder loads and lead bullet it will make them scratch their heads
    Last edited by Lead pot; 01-26-2019 at 02:15 PM.

  18. #58
    Boolit Buddy Distant Thunder's Avatar
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    Thundermaker,

    With the right bullet and load that .45-70 will take you any place you want to go. If the chamber is as Ian posted here it is very similar to the chamber in my C. Sharps .45-70. I have used that rifle for years for mid-range paper matches out to 600, long-range paper matches out 1000 and NRA silhouette matches with very good results shooting grease groove bullets.

    I have relied on Swiss 1 1/2 for all my match shooting for many years and I was able to load 82.0 grains under the Lyman Postell bullet with a .030 LDPE wad. That load gave me just over 1300 fps and all the accuracy I needed to win my first NRA Regional Long Range match.

    It takes a bit of learning to be able to load the .45-70 to be competitive with the .45-90 and longer cartridges, but you can get there if you want to. There are those who do well with cartridges longer than the .45-90, but that's not an easy path either. There is more fouling and heavier recoil in those big cases.

    With the freebore that rifle of yours probably has you already have a .45-90 in function but without the longer case. Don't be afraid to compress 1 1/2 Swiss .250 to .300", there is likely a second sweet spot with that amount of compression that will get you to 1300+ fps which is all you'll need. With black powder and heavy recoil the longer cases top out at 1400+ fps anyway and that is not really enough difference to put you in he winner circle.

    Learn to shoot your .45-70 in all kinds of conditions, good and bad, and you will leave most everyone else in your smoke. The only way to do that is to spend a lot of time shooting. There is no substitute for range time, especially under match conditions. Go to as many matches as you can and start shooting as soon as possible. If you don't you'll only end up wondering why you didn't start sooner! Yes, you'll miss the target sometimes, but we all do even after years of match shooting. Don't worry about that.

    Don't get stuck on high BC bullets, look to the most accurate bullet in your rifle. Your rifle will tell you what it likes best. You have something close to 18-twist barrel if not an 18-twist. Stay with bullets not over 1.450" long, and better if they are 1.430-1.440" long. As the range increases stability will out way BC at black powder velocities every time. And, YES, there is a difference between a .45 caliber bullet in an 18-twist that is 1.430" long and one that is 1.460" long. The longer one will shoot well when things are steady and stable, when the wind gets twitchy the shorter more stable bullet will hold up well and the longer marginally stable bullet will go to **** and leave you scratching you head.

    So many shooters can't figure out why their load/bullet shoots so well one time and then the next it's all over the target? Stability is a complicated thing to understand but very easy to achieve, just don't get too long and you're there.

    Stability is also affected by bullet shape. A more slender, higher BC nose will require a faster spin than a blunter, lower BC bullet of the same length. Most shooters don't consider bullet length at all when choosing a long range bullet, but their should.

    So to recap. I suggest a bullet of reasonably high BC that is not longer than 1.440". Use 1 1/2 Swiss powder and the primer your rifle prefers. Try all the primers you can get. Probably start with Federal 210 Premium Gold Medal Large Rifle. Drop tube enough powder into your primed case to require .200" compression to start with, compress. Hand seat a .060 LDPE wad on the powder. If you compress this much with the wad in place you may bulge your case. Finger seat you bullets lubed with a good quality lube (Black Magic, SPG are two). Your bullets should be as big around as will fit your unsized case and still chamber, probably .459-.460-ish. Size them IF NEEDED with a Lee push thru sizing die, but only as much as needed.

    The bullet seating depth will be controlled by you compression depth and should be such that when you raise you breech block the bullet is pushed into the rifling lead as much as can be done without having to force it too much, probably .020-.030".

    Wipe between shots with one or two damp patches being careful not to leave a puddle in the chamber. A chamber mop should be used if necessary to dry the chamber. Wiping needs to match conditions. With grease groove bullets you don't really want to wipe all the lube from the previous shot out of the bore and you don't have to be squeaky clean and bone dry. Paper patch are a different animal.

    There are a million variables to play with in the loading of black powder, but if you start with what I have suggested you should have some reasonable accuracy without too much work and you can learn and improve from there.

    Paper patch bullets are superior to grease groove and not anymore time consuming to load. I think they are even easier, but I keep it very simple. With them the fit to your chamber is even more critical than grease groove and it helps to have someone who knows what they're doing to get you up to speed more quickly. I don't shoot greasers anymore in matches. PPB are just the best there is, just a plain and simple fact. For some reason there are those who can't seem to get them to work. That is why I say start with GG, there will be more people close by that can help you with any problems. With PPB there are not that many who do it well. That number however is increasing every year and that is a good thing for our sport.

    Good luck and don't be afraid to ask questions, just use a good filter. There are a number of very good shooters on here and elsewhere that can give you good answers to all your questions. Not everyone who is an expert shooter on the internet has actually won many matches if any at all, it will be easy to see the difference if you look.
    Jim Kluskens
    aka Distant Thunder

  19. #59
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by Distant Thunder View Post
    ... Paper patch bullets are superior to grease groove and not anymore time consuming to load. I think they are even easier, but I keep it very simple. With them the fit to your chamber is even more critical than grease groove and it helps to have someone who knows what they're doing to get you up to speed more quickly. I don't shoot greasers anymore in matches. PPB are just the best there is, just a plain and simple fact. For some reason there are those who can't seem to get them to work. That is why I say start with GG, there will be more people close by that can help you with any problems. With PPB there are not that many who do it well. That number however is increasing every year and that is a good thing for our sport. ...
    jim, for loading/shooting PPBs, do you feel that there is an advantage with using a custom, tighter PPB chamber over a standard .45-70gov't chamber?
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  20. #60
    Boolit Master Lead pot's Avatar
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    Rob, We will see how Jim feels about this.
    But I will say yes. I see a difference with the last 5 reamers I had made for the .40, 44's and .45

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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