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Old April 26, 2005, 08:44 PM   #1
hondo25
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Join Date: November 14, 2004
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sharps 1874 Italian replica in .45-70

Hello all,

I just purchased a Pedersoli 1874 Sharps Cavalry carbine in .45-70 caliber.

I plan on shooting primarily cowboy action factory loads. I purchase a couple of boxes of "Ultramax" cartridges but am now having some concerns over the idea of using smokeless ammo in this rifle. The owners manual says to use only factory loaded ammunition that does not exceed 25,000 c.u.p. It doesn't say anything about smokeless versus black powder cartridges.

I can't find any data on the pressure rating in cup's for the "Ultramax" ammo that I've already purchased or for any other cowboy action load ammo maker.

Any guidance or opinions would be appreciated. I'd really like to take this rifle to the range, but want to make sure it'll be safe with the smokeless cowboy ammo I have.

Thanks in advance for your replies.

Dh
Springfield, Virginia
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Old April 26, 2005, 10:02 PM   #2
Jim Watson
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I wouldn't worry about it.
A bulk ammo make like Ultramax or the usualy Cowboy loaders are not going to take the risk of loading too heavily for one of the more common rifles on the market. They leave that to small outfits like Buffalo Bore who provide plenty of warning.

And the warning about factory loads only is pure lawyerese. These rifles thrive on good handloads, you can learn to make better than you can buy.

Pedersoli is the best of the Eyetalian copies, the only one I have ever seen in real BPCR competition at ranges up to 600 yards.
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Old April 27, 2005, 10:55 PM   #3
hondo25
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sharps 1874 Italian replica in .45-70

Dear Jim,

Thanks for your kind reply to may ammo question.

This is my first venture into replica firearms. I just assumed when I bought it that it was made for modern smokeless ammunition. I also figured that since I would only be shooting "Cowboy action" loads with lead bullets that excessive pressures would not be an issue. I think, as you've indicated, that I was probably right.

It's just frustrating that I can't seem to find any pressure specs for any of the cowboy loads that I've already purchased or that I may be purchasing in the future. I know that Pedersoli tells me to stay within 25,000 c.u.p.'s. The problem is that there is no such information either on the box or on the manufacturers web sites. It's like it's some kind of secret.

Thanks again for your reply,

Dh
Springfield, Virginia
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Old April 28, 2005, 08:09 AM   #4
Jim Watson
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It is hard to guess the motivation of the companies, but I think that if they labeled ammo with the developed chamber pressure that there would be few people like you looking for safe ammo and a lot looking for the hottest stuff on the market.

Have fun, a friend has a Sharps .50 carbine and it is a hoot to shoot. It doesn't really kick all that hard, but the barrel just rises up to a high angle. Accuracy is about minute of Commanche, which I think is pretty good for a rifle 140 years old.
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Old April 28, 2005, 07:57 PM   #5
hondo25
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sharps 1874 Italian replica in .45-70

Thanks again Jim for replying back!

You're probably right about ammo makers putting pressure info on their ammo boxes. It might also be a liability issue.

I've never heard the saying, "minute of Commanche" with regard to rifle accuracy or anything else for that matter. What does that mean?

thanks again,

DH
Virginia
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Old April 28, 2005, 08:29 PM   #6
Jim Watson
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What I meant was, that old (original conversion of a percussion model) carbine is not real accurate by modern new gun standards but it would still, at any reasonable distance, hit a hostile... or his horse.
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Old April 28, 2005, 09:16 PM   #7
hondo25
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That's interesting, Jim.

I had never heard that expression before.

Thanks again for your helpful advice.

dh
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