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Thread: 50-70 smokeless powder load data

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    50-70 smokeless powder load data

    Just picked up a 1866 dated Trapdoor Springfield Rifle (three band, not cut down).
    I've have brass and dies on hand, with a Lee .515 diameter, 450 grain bullet mold inbound.
    All I need now is some load data.
    I hope to use Accurate Arms' 5744 powder.
    Anyone have load data?
    There is nothing on the Accurate Arms web site for the 50-70 cartridge.
    Gregg

  2. #2
    Boolit Buddy
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    70 grains ffg , a card wad an let her fly is the best advice i can give
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  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy Gellot Wilde's Avatar
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    Yeah...I'd keep off the smokeless in an original like that no matter what load data you can find.

    Stick with black powder loads only is my advice.
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  4. #4
    Boolit Master
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    I have two of them and have used 5744 in them with the same bullet you have. I used 25 gr and will not go higher in that old gun after all the barrel is lined and it was brazed in over 125 years ago. I mostly shoot 70 gr of FFG in mine and two years ago I shot a cow buffalo with mine at 124 paces with the same bullet cast 40-1. The bullet passed clean through the chest and exited the far side breaking a rib on the way out. I used that rifle as I wanted to use the same gun Buffalo Bill used to shoot numerous buffs to feed the Railroad workers. One shot did the job with no doubt about it.

  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy
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    Thank You Nick.
    I'll give the 25 grains of 5744 a try.
    Gregg

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    Japlmg,
    I have a down load of Accurate Arms 50-70 data. PM me with you email if you would like a copy.
    EDG

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by EDG View Post
    Japlmg,
    I have a down load of Accurate Arms 50-70 data. PM me with you email if you would like a copy.
    Is that offer extended to anyone? I have an 1866 in which I am considering using 5477.
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  8. #8
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    25gr 5744 with a 350gr boolit made a nice mild-mannered plinkin' load in the old swede roller i had.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master
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    i would not use smokless in a 50-70.

  10. #10
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by StrawHat View Post
    Is that offer extended to anyone? I have an 1866 in which I am considering using 5477.

    Send me a request by email.
    I left you my email address in a PM.
    EDG

  11. #11
    Boolit Master gandydancer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Japlmg View Post
    Just picked up a 1866 dated Trapdoor Springfield Rifle (three band, not cut down).
    I've have brass and dies on hand, with a Lee .515 diameter, 450 grain bullet mold inbound.
    All I need now is some load data.
    I hope to use Accurate Arms' 5744 powder.
    Anyone have load data?
    There is nothing on the Accurate Arms web site for the 50-70 cartridge.
    Gregg
    I have 4 page loadsheet from accurate arms on about 20 old black powder arms they sent me on 5744 when they 1st started makeing 5744 call accurate and ask about 8700 powder also I'll find a sheet and send you some information if you like. GD
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  12. #12
    Boolit Master gandydancer's Avatar
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    found the sheet. 50/70 load from accuate arms using C Sharps rifle and 5744 powder and a 425 grain lead bullet (30 grs 5744 powder) it corno's at 1419 FPS I would start with about 22 grains or like the man says use black powder. good luck GD
    "The good sense of the people will always be found to be the best army.They may be led astray for a moment,but will soon correct themselves" - Thomas Jefferson

    I wasn't Born in the south but I got there as soon as I could.
    I like this site. MOSTLY good people. good ideas.

    Those who live by the sword get shot by those who don't!!
    "Either this man is dead or my watch has stopped." Groucho Marx

    "We are born naked, wet, and hungry. Then things get worse"

  13. #13
    Boolit Buddy
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    Thanks for the info guys. I've been working up 50-70 loads with IMR 3031 and IMR4198, but I have a pound of 5744 just begging to be loaded.

  14. #14
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    Accurate Arms advises 5744 as a black powder duplicator when loaded at 40% of the black powder weight. So, for your 50-70, try 28 grains of 5744. That works wonderfully well in my 45-70s.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master

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    I have found AA4064 to work extremely well in the big cases, 45-90 for me, as suggested by AA when I Emailed them. They also suggested 5744 loads but what I liked about the 4064 was that it filled the case nicely while still maintaining BP like pressures, unlike the 5744 which left a lot of air space, and then the groups really sold me on it. The downside to the 4064 vs the 5744 is somewhat fewer loads per pound of powder but both work well and I just liked the idea of little to no air space in the case depending on the load, but of course this is a different round and you would need to contact AA for the 50/70 data. They seem like really nice folks and will get right back to you with answers to your questions, we discussed chamber pressures as well as efficiency questions about their different powders and they were right upfront about everything I asked.
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  16. #16
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nueces View Post
    Accurate Arms advises 5744 as a black powder duplicator when loaded at 40% of the black powder weight. So, for your 50-70, try 28 grains of 5744. That works wonderfully well in my 45-70s.
    The trouble isn't the weight but the space it leaves. I don't think there is much doubt that black powder is the best propellant for the .50-70 if you can get it. If this is difficult, I would go for one of the modern volume-for-volume substitutes, such as Pyrodex, and accept the greater care with cleaning that this requires. An original Springfield in good order ought to be getting the most meticulous cleaning no matter what you use.

  17. #17
    Boolit Master


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    Yes, 5744 allows a good bit of empty space inside the cartridge. And it tends to leave unburnt bits in the barrel. It also puts holes very close together on the target, at pressures comparable to BP pressures. A helluva good trade, I think. Horses for courses, as our Cousins might say.

  18. #18
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nueces View Post
    Yes, 5744 allows a good bit of empty space inside the cartridge. And it tends to leave unburnt bits in the barrel. It also puts holes very close together on the target, at pressures comparable to BP pressures. A helluva good trade, I think. Horses for courses, as our Cousins might say.

    There doesn't seem to be a problem with that air space when using the 5744 and as you say it puts holes very close together, that and other attributes leads a lot of folks to like it a lot as evidenced by it's popularity! I probably make to big of a deal about the air space and with the right powders, such as 5744, it just don't seem to be a problem at all but I suppose it's all about what a person wants. As far as air space in big cases, back in the 70's I pulled a new factory Winchester 405 and I was really surprised at how empty that case was! I have no idea which powder they used or even if it was one that was offered for reloading at the time but there sure wasn't much powder in there, these of course were BP equivalent loads but regardless there was a lot of air space in that factory load.
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  19. #19
    Boolit Master
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    5744 is not supposed to be position sensitive so it can tolerate the air space.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ballistics in Scotland View Post
    The trouble isn't the weight but the space it leaves. I don't think there is much doubt that black powder is the best propellant for the .50-70 if you can get it. If this is difficult, I would go for one of the modern volume-for-volume substitutes, such as Pyrodex, and accept the greater care with cleaning that this requires. An original Springfield in good order ought to be getting the most meticulous cleaning no matter what you use.
    EDG

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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