.577/.450 & .577 Snider Shooters


February 25, 2013, 10:22 PM
Here's a source for some more affordable Martini Henry & Snider cases:

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February 26, 2013, 01:41 PM
Wow good timing. I'm looking at getting into these Snider. They were a fascinating alternative approach to the trapdoor design.

February 26, 2013, 10:33 PM
I understand that the mag tech brass rim, is either not thick enough or is too small in diameter, (I forget which) But is a sloppy fit in some chambers, with extraction problems

February 27, 2013, 01:02 AM
I have heard mention of this, too. I can only say that in the three Sniders I have (Enfield Mk.II**, Nepalese 3-band, & a JC&A Lord Sporter) the MagTech cases have worked, though the Mk.II** did overide the rim on one cartridge, so I segregated that one for use in one of the other rifles.
Here's a link to a thread on BMF that addresses the problem. It also shows photos of an easy fix if your extractor doesn't engage the smaller MagTech/CBC rim. http://britishmilitariaforums.yuku.com/reply/85567/Nepal-extractor#reply-85567

February 27, 2013, 10:21 AM
Is this you/your company selling them, or are you just relinking? If it's yours you should put them up on the British Militaria yuku forum as well if you have not already - many of the same users as Gunboards. Good deal on the pre-formed cases considering the apparent learning curve and failure rate.

The IMA/AC Sniders are a great gun as an "intro" to restoring the Nepalese beaters - they seem to be the optimum mix of price point and condition, and are easiest to load for other than the muzzleloaders. I think I'm going to be going the Fiocchi 24ga plastic shotshell route on my Snider for the most part since I'm not expecting to shoot it a ton or competitively..but might eventually pick up a box or two of the brass just to have them. A bag of 100 plastic shotshells, some .590-.60 round balls and a pound of BP will not set you back anywhere near as much as the $5+ a pop loaded cases.

February 27, 2013, 12:18 PM
The Cheddite 24 gauge hulls are the easiest route to shoot these.The brass MagTech if you want brass cases.


February 27, 2013, 12:55 PM
24 gauge Chedite and Fiocci plastic shot shells will still need to be cut down and resized as they are a real tight fit in most Snider chambers that I have seen. The plastic does resize easier and without annealing like the brass cases. On the other hand, they are thicker than the brass cases and with a .600 round ball below the mouth may not chamber. .585 minie bullets are a tight friction fit in resized plastic shot shells and seem to shoot more accurately than when loaded in reformed CBC brass. My Sniders extract the reformed brass shot shells just fine. I have gotten 20+ loadings with the ones I have without a split ever. The plastic cases have more issues with extraction and seem to last only 3 or 4 loadings with black powder.

February 28, 2013, 02:03 PM
I'll try these out and compare them with the Bertram. I think I'm going to go with PP soft lead over 2F to get as close as possible to the true diameter and keep it easy on the old carbine. If that load works out it would make one heck of a hunting rifle too. That's a lot of lead!

February 28, 2013, 03:35 PM
cosmoline, it depends on the model rifle. Some of those old conversion sniders, had the enfield barrels with progressive rifling. (deeper at the breech than at the muzzle.) The result is that to fill the rifling at the breech, the bullet has to be almost .60. That is also why slugging the barrel by running an oversize ball through the length gives an improper bore size.

February 28, 2013, 06:06 PM
I'm still learning the specifics on these. Was the idea that they'd be shooting Minnie Ball type bullets that would expand out their skirt to engage the rifling?

To get an accurate reading, maybe I'll do two slugs from either end, and drive them back out in reverse before they get very far.

It's a fascinating gap-filler of a rifle between rifle musket and cartridge gun.

February 28, 2013, 07:26 PM
The original bullet that was loaded into Snider cartridges was the .577 Pritchett-style 480 grain bullet. It had a hollow base with a boxwood or fired-clay plug inserted into it. The plug was driven into the base upon firing expanding the bullet into the grooves. The charge of 68 to 72 grains of "Musket" powder (probably nearer to our FFg) also helped seal the bore at least initially.

February 28, 2013, 07:59 PM
I have found shooting a bullet sized to fit into a fireformed case works very well in my Sniders. In most British military Sniders this would translate into approximately +/-.600" diameter. Accurate Molds catalogs a couple of molds that shoot well, #60-480B is one that we did as a Group Buy on BMF last year, but I have found that you need to shoot them a bit slower than the full service charge to get best accuracy
Another AA bullet I have had good success with is #60-445B, that I had made a bit smaller diameter to use in my rechambered Nepalese Snider, & size it to .590". Here's a group I shot (ten rounds) with it at 100yds (prone)
The load was 47.5gns of GoEx 3Fg with enough Cream of Wheat to bring the bullet to the desired height in the case. The cases were unsized (fireformed) MagTech, with the bullet a slip-fit in the case mouth. Fouling isn't an issue, & I can easily fire ten shots without needing to wipe the bore.

February 28, 2013, 09:03 PM
I tried standard 577 minnies when I first loaded for Snider. Far far too undersized. Couldn't even stay on the paper at 50 yds. But I didn't have a plug driving into the hollow base like the original service load. Sniders are fun to shoot, but there is a bit of a learning curve to get acceptable minute of barn accuracy.

I like the "Holy Crap Look at that" when pulling out the ammo at the range and loading up.

March 1, 2013, 12:38 PM
What about simply using a roundball sized to the bore? If the original rifling was designed for Minnie skirts then a RB should be fine.

March 1, 2013, 04:43 PM
I shoot both .600 diameter round balls and the .575 Lee "modern minie" (garbage can) paper patched to about .595 in my 3-band MKIII. The round balls kick less but the minies are a bit more accurate. Neither of these will chamber when loaded in cut down 24 gauge plastic shotshells. The sights aren't the greatest but I can keep all shots on an 8.5X8.5 target at 50 yards.

March 1, 2013, 06:03 PM
Years ago, I was just married and funds were in short supply..had a Snider artilery and 3band. The artilery had a 5 groove bore, the 3 bander 3 tapered grooves like the pattern 53 muzzleloader. I made chamber casts of each. Since I had no loading dies, I turned cases from solid brass stock for a nice close slip fit. I also bored case to hold 70grs. of powder instead of the heavy 80+ of originals..figured my shoulder would thank me later!
groove dia. was around .585"..so I turned up an old style 3 piece "hammer swage"..body was desired bullet dia., base-punch fitted inside hollw minnie base for support & a fitted nose punch to match nose shape. The base punch was adjustable via fine threads..top punch bottomed out on body..for repeatability. I used this in an arbor press & lubed bullets came out a bit shorter in length but perfect fit for bore.
I altered a scrapped little arbor press with fitted nose punch & counterbore for case head..cases never really expanded much & reloading was done at range.
I was getting around 3" at 100yds with those hard to see open sights.

March 11, 2013, 09:40 PM
Both the .577 Snider & .577/.450 M-H are very satisfying calibers to get shooting accurately. Both require a bit of experimenting &, perhaps, deviating from the accepted 'norms' of BPCR shooting. I've been using the MagTech/ CBC brass for both calibers for the last five years &, thus far, have only lost one case (Snider) due to a split in the case wall. In my opinion they are an excellent alternative to the more expensive options out there.

March 17, 2013, 08:18 PM
Cosmoline, did you evr order any of these reformed cases to try in your Snider? If so, how did they work out?

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