Quantcast
  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Marlin .45-70 for deer?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by ETXhiker, Dec 11, 2006.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. ETXhiker

    ETXhiker Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2006
    Messages:
    392
    Location:
    East Texas
    I've wanted a .45-70 for years and my beloved has granted my Christmas wish. Honestly, I mainly want it for the fun of just having one, but it occurs to me that I might want to take it deer hunting next year. Obviously, any factory .45-70 load will take a whitetail, especially the small East Texas variety we see around here. But what about meat damage? Will the big slow bullet cut a large neat hole, or make a big mess? Hard cast lead or jacketed? I've been meaning to get the reloading press out of mothballs, but factory loads seem to cover the gamut pretty well in this caliber. If anyone has any experience in this area, I would appreciate feedback, thanks.
     
  2. Sunray

    Sunray Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2003
    Messages:
    10,497
    Location:
    London, Ont.
    Most factory .45-70 is loaded down because of all the Trapdoor rifles and carbine out there. Of course, there is factory ammo that is unsafe in one of them. Not exactly inexpensive though.
    I doubt you'll have any trouble with meat damage using a lighter than 405 grain jacketed bullet. You're aiming at the rib cage. Mind you, the deer up here can run 2-300 pounds live weight. They're not all that big though. Lots of guys I know use a .45-70 for deer and still get fed for months.
     
  3. Starter52

    Starter52 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2005
    Messages:
    1,688
    Location:
    Northeast USA
    Sunray's right. A 300-350 gr. bullet is all you need for deer. FYI the Remington factory load is popular for whitetail in the Northeast.
     
  4. mete

    mete Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2002
    Messages:
    3,579
    Location:
    NY
    I've used the 45-70 for years now, all with the 300 factory or equivalent.I thought some of the factory ammo opened up too fast so I went to the Win Partition -much better. Even with the most rapidly expanding bullet you'll never get meat damage like the high velocity cartridges such as the 308 etc. BTW Winchester had a load that matched the modern one [ 300gr @ 1850] 100 years ago !!! The Marlin is good for at least 1 1/2" groups .If he ever wants to hunt anything larger he can easily find factory hotter loads .The gun and cartridge are a winning combination !!
     
  5. Pumpkinheaver

    Pumpkinheaver Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2003
    Messages:
    1,255
    Location:
    missouri
    I handload the 350FP from hornady to about 1950 fps. It wacks deer with authority and does little meat damage. The bullet is a little tougher that the 300s. Another good deer bullet is the 405 remington, I load it to about 1700fps.
     
  6. mustanger98

    mustanger98 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2004
    Messages:
    2,986
    Location:
    Union County, GA, CSA
    You know, I brag on my .30-30 and lately I've been bragging some about how it did on that buck I killed Thanksgiving evening. That said, that 350gr .45-70's gonna punch a bigger hole through the lungs and they probably get knocked off their feet. One of my shooting buddies was telling me about how he'd been loading his .45-70's and he said it was like the deer got picked up and slammed. That said, put it through the lungs and it shouldn't damage meat. Unless you're big into ribs.
     
  7. TIMC

    TIMC Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2003
    Messages:
    2,786
    Location:
    Texas
    I took a nice pig this year using my 45/70 and 300 grain jhp ammo with a neck shot. There was no major damage but ther was a pretty good size hole. Shot placement has a lot to do with how much damage you do.
     
  8. Brass Fetcher

    Brass Fetcher Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1,685
    Location:
    Eastern border of the United States
    Here is the 300gr Winchester Partition Gold in 45-70 in a block of ballistic gelatin.

    The second image is that of a 165gr .308win Ballistic tip. Not saying that anyone is right or wrong, just wanted to post some scandalous pictures of disorganized protein blocks.

    Can someone tell me how to include the images in the body of the post?

    Thanks,

    JE223
     

    Attached Files:

  9. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2003
    Messages:
    12,156
    Location:
    DFW Area
    Even the "downloaded" 45/70 is plenty for deer. It sure did a number on the buffalo...
     
  10. AStone

    AStone Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2005
    Messages:
    24,176
    Location:
    Far N, E coast
    JE,

    Click on a thumbnail. Copy the URL.
    Now, click on the image icon (mountain with a moon/sun) on your menu.
    Enter the URL into the dialog box. Click OK.

    Thanks for the images. The difference between the slower 45/70 & faster .308 is ... educational.

    I'm going to buy a 336 in .30-30 first, but that 45/70 is very appealing.

    Of course, a slug out of my 870 might do the same as a 45/70.

    Nem
     
  11. Brass Fetcher

    Brass Fetcher Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1,685
    Location:
    Eastern border of the United States
    Thanks Nematocyst-870. I have been wanting to do that with my gelatin pics since I started on THR, I just never asked around.:eek:

    I'm a big 45-70 fan, too.
     
  12. dodge

    dodge Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2003
    Messages:
    484
    Location:
    ridgerunner from Pa
    I just got a doe that weighted about 115-125 lbs. with my Marlin guide gun (45/70) and thou I hit her high in the back just missing the spine, she went down like a rock. I was using my handload that puts the Hornady 350 gr fn at 1800 fps. While she was moving around trying to get back up I had to put another one into her to put her down for good. It impressed me just how quickly she went down with a such a poor shot. I had a friend who hit a buck, as near as we could figger out, in the same place with a 243 and he got away. There's something to be said for a big heavy slow moving slug.
     
  13. ETXhiker

    ETXhiker Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2006
    Messages:
    392
    Location:
    East Texas
    Thanks, guys. That's exactly what I was looking for. Sounds like the factory 300 gr. loads do just fine. I'll probably start with them, but I've been looking for an excuse to get into bullet casting for years - this is probably as good a reason as any. Can't wait to receive this lever gun and get it to the range.
     
  14. phantomak47

    phantomak47 Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Messages:
    1,172
    Location:
    Texas
    What is your range with the 45/70?
     
  15. mustanger98

    mustanger98 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2004
    Messages:
    2,986
    Location:
    Union County, GA, CSA
    I'll have to find the MidwayUSA catalog, but I recall seeing where Lyman makes a .458 mold for a lead Hollowpoint in the 300gr range. It's the exact weight I'm unsure of as it's been a while since I looked.

    I sprung some Remington 300gr CoreLokts on my brother-in-law once... 5rds and he was done.:D That was in my H&R Handi-Rifle. I told him that was my "big and dangerous game" rifle.
     
  16. JustsayMo

    JustsayMo Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2004
    Messages:
    1,444
    Location:
    the Evergreen State
    Two seasons ago a pard of mine took his Elk will a 405 gr hard cast bullet pushed by black powder (maybe 1300 fps at the muzzle) in his 45-70 Sharps replica. Busted through both shoulders and exited, and as he would say "is probably still goin..." The Elk stumbled and then expired. Paced off at just under 100 yards.

    My big and slow load chugs along at just under 1500 fps. Plows right through over 12" of wind thrown fir. before burying itself in the hillside.

    In my limited experience there is a lot less "bloodshot" meat with the big and slow bullets. "You can eat right up to the hole."
     
  17. SwampWolf

    SwampWolf Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2005
    Messages:
    3,842
    Location:
    North Central Ohio
    In the areas I mostly hunt (Pa and Mi), if a deer isn't dispatched on the spot, you stand a good chance of finding someone else's tag on your deer by the time you catch up with it. For this reason, I generally use a little more gun than necessary for whitetails and this includes employing either my Winchester 1886 in 45-70 or my Savage 99 in .358 cal. Hit in a good area with either of these rounds and it's been my experience a deer doesn't go far.

    That said, when hit in a good spot they haven't traveled far when I've used my Ruger 77 in .257 Roberts! :confused:
     
  18. pinetree64

    pinetree64 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2003
    Messages:
    292
    Location:
    Cumming, GA
    I've used my Ruger #1 45/70 with great success. I shoot 300g Remington JHP. The last three deer I shot with it had much less meat destruction than those shot with my 30-06 using 150g NBT. I do reload mine hotter than factory but not to the max. I now only use my 30-06 when hunting large clearcuts or pastures.
    tjg
     
  19. mrrick

    mrrick Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2006
    Messages:
    106
    Location:
    Abu Dhabi, UAE, and White Mountains, AZ
    405 grain cast bullet at around 1500 fps is deadly, with little meat damage.
     
  20. AStone

    AStone Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2005
    Messages:
    24,176
    Location:
    Far N, E coast
    I've read several posts, at least one in this thread, about the 45/70 being a real mule when it comes to recoil.

    Would some of you 45/70 folks kindly offer a rough comparison of felt recoil of a 45/70 (say 300 gr factory load) v. a 12 ga 00 or slug (full load or reduced recoil, your choice, but please specify)?

    I understand that such opinions are pretty subjective, and different people react to recoil in different ways. But still, some range of benchmarks would be useful.

    Thanks.
     
  21. Brass Fetcher

    Brass Fetcher Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1,685
    Location:
    Eastern border of the United States
    About the same, when fired out of a gun that you would normally carry hunting, etc. I would say the Marlin lever action is about between a 3.0" 00buck and 3.5" buckshot load out of a Mossberg (835?). Nothing to be afraid of, but the recoil will probably require lots of practice and ammo $ to overcome.

    Oh yeah, if you want to 'man up' and fire the 45/70 from an unsupported prone position - there is nothing wrong with crying. :)
     
  22. mustanger98

    mustanger98 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2004
    Messages:
    2,986
    Location:
    Union County, GA, CSA
    Nematocyst-870
    Nemotcyst-870, I've fired several rifles and shotguns of comparable chamberings that either kicked like a mule or didn't... stock fit and the weight of the weapon and other factors all play important parts. Yeah, my .45-70 kicks like a mule, but I know some guys at the range who shoot .45-70's in matches... they load their own ammo (some lighter, some hotter) and they can sit down and shoot 'em all day. But they're shooting heavier rifles than most of us will hunt deer with.

    My comparison of .45-70 with 12guage 00 (standard Winchester 2 3/4") from an 870 Wingmaster... the .45-70 HandiRifle kicks a lot harder. However, I shot this .45/70 across the bench and the 12guage from standing. The 12guage didn't faze me. I imagine the HandiRifle in .45/70 also doesn't kick as hard from standing as recoil seems to generally be harder across the bench.

    I'm not sure this range of benchmarks is all the useful. And I'm somewhat an oddity for this because I'm an arthritic with a fused back and both hips replaced. I do most of my hunting with a .30-30Winchester levergun which is a whole 'nuther story.

    I know; I see the smiley. Thing is, from my perspective, nobody in his right mind is gonna fire a .45/70 with factory 300gr or 405gr JSP from prone. Can anybody say "broken collarbone"? Yeah, that'll give somebody something to cry about.:uhoh:
     
  23. torpid

    torpid Member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2004
    Messages:
    1,945
    Location:
    CA coast
    Nematocyst-870:

    I can fire my Marlin 1895g with 300-405gr factory loads all day no problem, but I did swap out the rock hard stock Marlin recoil "pad" for one that absorbs recoil. In addition I added a buttstock cartridge carrier that seems to mellow it further.

    Firing Garrett's 540gr +P Hammerheads is a different story, but I bet you've felt comparable recoil with your beloved 870 many times over from higher power loads.

    I have yet to fire anything out of my Marlin that compares to a 12 gauge 3" magnum slug through my synthetic stocked aluminum Mossberg (which seems very light compared to my old 870, yet is still heavier than my Marlin).

    In my opinion the .45-70 is overall a hell of a lot mellower that many others had led me to believe (but that usually has been the case regarding other folk's recoil opinions in my experience). I guess it seems "muley" if you are coming from a 30/30, but IMO it's just punchy enough to be fun!

    Now you must get one. :evil:

    [​IMG]
     
  24. ETXhiker

    ETXhiker Member

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2006
    Messages:
    392
    Location:
    East Texas
    :D No kidding. My Mossberg 500 with 3" slugs is a handfull, but I can't wait to try either the big Garrett or Buffalo bore stuff in .45-70. I've been shooting my buddy's Win. model 70 .375 H&H for years. Now I have something to wipe that smile off his face. :evil:
     
  25. dmftoy1

    dmftoy1 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2003
    Messages:
    2,213
    Location:
    Lexington, IL
    With factory loads for a "modern" 45/70 loads (jacketed hollowpoints, etc.) I think the kick is fairly close to slugs in a 12 gauge . . .with "Cowboy" loads (say 1200-1300 fps - 350 grain Slug) I don't think there's much kick at all. (I can shoot it until I run out of ammo). (this is in an 1895 with a 22 inch Octagon barrel)

    I wouldn't even hesitate to shoot a deer with the cowboy loads at the distances I'm capable of shooting (less than 100 yards with irons). There are alot of combinations that have ALOT less power at that range and that people view as perfectly adequate.

    FWIW.

    Have a good one,
    Dave
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page