Load testing & evaluation range .45-70

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by Robtattoo, Sep 12, 2012.

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  1. Robtattoo

    Robtattoo Member

    Nov 7, 2010
    Tullahoma, TN
    I've just reloaded my first ever rounds. I have 2 .45-70 rifles; a Browning high wall & a Marlin 1895.

    I've loaded 5 rounds of each powder quantity from minimum to maximum (50 total for each gun), one set of 50 with cast 405gn bullets for the high wall, one with 350gn Hornadys for the Marlin.

    I'm shooting both these guns open sighted & I want to try & figure out what particular load each prefers, for best accuracy.

    What range would you recommend to test fire each load? Would 50yd groups tell me enough about each 5-shot group, or should I open up to 100?

    Neither of these rifles has previously been sighted in properly, so I honestly have no clue where they would print, or even if they'd hit a regular 8x11 printed target. :rolleyes:
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2012
  2. MtnCreek

    MtnCreek Member

    Dec 8, 2010
    Georgia, Dixie
    I don't load 45-70, so I can't comment on that cartridge.

    I would match for pressure as I went through my loads. Be prepared to stop short at any point where pressure looks to be an issue. I don't know anything about the 45-70 or those rifles, but I would bet you're not going to see any pressure signs untill you in the danger zone for those rifles.

    As far as distance, you know your eyes better than we do.

    I would load up some extra or buy a box of factory to get on paper.
  3. Asherdan

    Asherdan Member

    Sep 20, 2007
    Hoss Country /USA
    I always load five extra of my starting load for sighting in purposes, if necessary. For 45-70, if I'm starting from scratch with load development like the OP is, I start off shooting 50 yard groups through the chrony. This has, so far, allowed me to cull out my couple of best performing loads for testing out at 100.

    Nice rifles, good luck!
  4. jfremder

    jfremder Member

    Jan 24, 2010
    My Browning High Wall Hunter loves the 405gr cast over 30-31 gr of H4198. The Stock ladder sights were on the second lowest notch for a 6 o'clock hold at 50y on a 6" bullseye. Shoots a nice ragged hole every time.
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