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Old February 22, 2012, 04:39 PM   #1
frumious
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Re-purposing 45-70 bullets

Hi All,

I have some purchased .45-70 cast bullets (.4585 dia., 18 BHN, 405 gr., plain base, Missouri Bullets) that aren't doing too well for me. I cannot push the bullets as fast as I'd like with IMR 3031 or IMR 4198. I believe it is mainly due to the size of the bore on my Marlin 1895 GBL (2011, deep-cut Ballard rifling, slugs at .4579). I am ordering different bullets (Penn) and will hopefuly have better luck.

In the meantime, I am not sure if I want to shoot up the rest of these bullets or not. At least, from my Marlin. I DID have this crazy idea to maybe size them down to .452 and shoot them out of my .45ACP. But I wonder if I could load a 405 grain bullet into a .45ACP cartridge and still have it cycle the action on my 1911? And how much of what kind of powder could I use? 2 grains of Bullseye?

I don't cast so I can't just melt them down. Also, they already have lube in the grooves...some wax-like blue stuff. I would probably buy one of those Lee sizing kits and use that for the resizing operation - like this.

Is this a bad idea or just a silly one? Or has it been done successfully?

I could instead size down to .429 and shoot them out of my .44mag. I normally use Alliant 2400 for 240's. And again, wouldn't be sure how much or what kind of powder to use.

-cls
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Old February 22, 2012, 05:04 PM   #2
hornetguy
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I'm pretty sure that would be too big a bullet to load and shoot from the ACP case. If you COULD seat it deep enough to cycle and chamber, you would likely have zero space left in the case for powder.

I imagine if you did size them down to .429, they would look like a smooth cylinder of lead, with no grease grooves left.

Post em on this forum and sell em... or trade em. How many do you have?
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Old February 22, 2012, 05:46 PM   #3
Goldy
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Nope to both. Maybe with a strong back/bench you could get them to resize that far. It'll pull lead down the base and wipe a lot of the grooves out. I tried it thinking I could shoot themout of a .45 colt.

For bowling pins we tried some 260 grain .45s. Not much room for powder. I think we used WW-540.
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Old February 22, 2012, 06:03 PM   #4
Adamantium
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Quote:
I have some purchased .45-70 cast bullets (.4585 dia., 18 BHN, 405 gr., plain base, Missouri Bullets) that aren't doing too well for me. I cannot push the bullets as fast as I'd like with IMR 3031 or IMR 4198. I believe it is mainly due to the size of the bore on my Marlin 1895 GBL (2011, deep-cut Ballard rifling, slugs at .4579).
I'm not seeing how bore size would be a big deal here. Oversized lead bullets will size down as they enter the barrel and you are only .0006 over, essentially ideal. What does the chronograph say you are shooting and what is your goal? Are there other problems at play here like poor accuracy? What amount of powder are you using for each load?

Quote:
In the meantime, I am not sure if I want to shoot up the rest of these bullets or not. At least, from my Marlin. I DID have this crazy idea to maybe size them down to .452 and shoot them out of my .45ACP. But I wonder if I could load a 405 grain bullet into a .45ACP cartridge and still have it cycle the action on my 1911? And how much of what kind of powder could I use? 2 grains of Bullseye?
I highly doubt those would seat to magazine length. I've never tried it though. I won't venture a guess on powder charge because it is well outside the realm of published load data. I've sized down bigger than .458 to .451 with my lee resizing kit. If you wanted to try give them a tumble in some alox and put a steel pipe over your press handle for extra leverage.

If you really don't want to shoot them and don't want to store them for possible future use selling them seems like the best bet.
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Old February 22, 2012, 06:11 PM   #5
frumious
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Adamantium, they are not oversize *enough* When I start to push them very hard (Marlin levels as opposed to trapdoor levels) I get barrel leading and poor accuracy.

-cls
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Old February 22, 2012, 07:05 PM   #6
Adamantium
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Ahh my mistake.
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Old February 22, 2012, 08:52 PM   #7
hk33ka1
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Melt them down when you start casting.
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Old February 22, 2012, 09:13 PM   #8
hornetguy
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Again, how many do you have?
I'm pretty sure there are some 45-70 shooters (like me) that might be interested in buying them or trading something for them if the price was right.
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Old February 22, 2012, 11:12 PM   #9
frumious
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I have 400 or 500 of them.
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Old February 22, 2012, 11:13 PM   #10
454PB
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They are .006" oversize, not .0006".

They can be sized down to .452", but they could distort and you'll lose some lube capacity. The Lee sizers will do it, but that much reduction would really strain a normal lubrisizer.

If I had them, I use them for somewhat reduced velocity loads.
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Old February 22, 2012, 11:59 PM   #11
hornetguy
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Since you're in Carrollton, and I'm in Allen, shipping wouldn't be an issue. Do you have a price in mind for them? PM if you wish...
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Old February 23, 2012, 04:43 AM   #12
Mike / Tx
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What you might try, if you have a goodly amount of those bullets you want to salvage and shoot, is bumping them up in size.

Never tried it myself but probably will be trying it soon if things don't work out with one of my revolvers.

Here is a link to only one report of how it's done, I am sure there are others,
Bumping Undersized Boolits

Bottom line is that you simply set either your press up with a 7/8"-14 bolt with the end filed smooth for flat nose or drilled out a touch to closely match the nose profile, and run them up so that you just squash the bullet down a touch bigger or use a drill press to accomplish the same thing.

Bottom line is all your looking to do is squash them, for lack of a better term, or bump them up in diameter, to just bigger than you need. Then you can possibly simply run them through a bigger sizing die such as this one,
.460 Bullet Sizing Die Set

This should get you where your wanting to be with not a lot of investment in anything other than time. Set up properly with the depth stop set on a drill press, or just at the cam over point of your press, you should be able to knock out a bunch with very little effort.

Just another idea.
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Old February 23, 2012, 09:01 AM   #13
frumious
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Holy crap Mike / TX thanks! I wondered if such a process existed but I wasn't sure what to even look for.

hornetguy I am waiting on the Penn bullets to arrive so I can shoot some test groups with them. If they shoot a lot better than my accuracy load I worked up with the Missouri bullets, and I decide to not try to bump up the Missouri bullets, then I will PM you.

Thanks very much to all.

-cls
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Old February 23, 2012, 12:11 PM   #14
Edward429451
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I bet those undersize boolits filled your bore full of lead, huh? I btdt with my 1895G with Ballard rifling and you will need to size to or shoot .460 size boolits in your gun. Marlins love fat boolits.

...and no, I don't want your undersize boolits! The best thing to do here is to bite the boolit (sic) and buy a mould. Recast those suckers into something useful! Casting isn't that hard and suddenly your boolits will be 2 or 3 cents each. the lube on the boolits will act as flux when you cast.
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Old February 23, 2012, 12:31 PM   #15
frumious
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Hey Edward, I have thought about casting...and with each cast-bullet escapade I find myself on casting my own instead of buying becomes more attractive...

...but I'm just not ready to get divorced. Yet.

Thanks, though!

-cls
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