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Old October 5, 2021, 10:32 PM   #1
smleno1mkIII
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1870 trap door in 45-60 wcf ?

Rifle is a very old sporter why wouldn’t they have just done 45-70?? Is there something special about the 45-60 I don’t know about?

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Old October 6, 2021, 02:16 AM   #2
ms6852
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Winchester , shortened the cartridge so that the 1876 Winchester rifle could operate it with its lever action.
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Old October 6, 2021, 07:53 AM   #3
Jim Watson
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Yes, but why settle for it in a single shot?

We can never know, it is just an interesting oddity now.
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Old October 6, 2021, 08:05 AM   #4
smleno1mkIII
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Yes I know all this that why it strikes me as odd It shoots great and all I’m just wondering why would you would handicap yourself when there’s no need to?

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Old October 6, 2021, 09:14 AM   #5
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Maybe he had a '76 and wanted common ammo for his repeater and single shot.
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Old October 6, 2021, 10:15 AM   #6
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I believe, but am not sure, that Bannerman's offered surplus Trapdoors that had been converted to a number of other cartridges.
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Old October 6, 2021, 12:02 PM   #7
ligonierbill
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Pure speculation here. Typical bullet for the 45-60 was a 300 gr. (I load those for my brother, who has an original 1876.) That's plenty enough for most game. Why use more lead and powder if it's not needed? And, although we can now load the 45-70 to outrageous levels in modern arms, the old Trapdoor with a full load of holy black under a 405 or 500 grain bullet is no slouch on your shoulder. "Sporter" in 45-60? Why not?!
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Old October 6, 2021, 07:10 PM   #8
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I don't think they saw it as much, if any, handicap. Consider that while the infantry settled on the .45-70-500, the cavalry load became the .45-55-405.

A lighter bullet and only 55gr of powder vs the 70gr "infantry" round. SO, I doubt that a 300gr or a 325gr slug on top of 60gr powder was thought of as a handicap.

The infantry wanted full power and the 500gr bullet for maximum range and the soldiers in the infantry had to live with it. Cavalry wanted something ligher, so as not to knock troopers off their horses firing the cavalry carbine, and, they got it.

If you're not hunting buffalo, a .45-60 is plenty for deer or elk within its usable range.
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Old October 6, 2021, 10:13 PM   #9
Jim Watson
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The 1873 rifle load was .45-70-405. They did not go to .45-70-500 until 1879 after the Sandy Hook extreme long range tests
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Old October 7, 2021, 12:18 AM   #10
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So my main problem now is no 45-60 reloading data for trapdoors I’ve only loaded a few so far with brass trimmed to 1.81 so my 405gr bullets fit without going into the lands 16.5 gr imr 4198 only 675fps bumped up to 18.5gr got 810fps but I have no idea what pressures are so I m scared to go much higher I know trapdoors aren’t renowned for their strength most loads I find are for the 1876 Winchester which is probably stronger than the trapdoor and uses smaller 300 gr bullets I bought it thinking it was a 45-70 it has about a 25inch barrel that’s a cutdown 1873 barrel I’m pretty sure,the breach/action is 1870 the lock is from a 1863 Springfield musket.

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Old October 7, 2021, 01:36 AM   #11
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You might consider using black powder.
I've heard arguments both ways about smokeless powder loads in black powder guns, and I figure why risk it?
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Old October 7, 2021, 02:37 AM   #12
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Lyman does not list a 45-60 smokeless load. The Winchester 1876 for which that round was developed used a toggle link action similar to the 1873, but strengthened. It is not as strong as the later 1886. Stay with black powder. My loading notes indicate that I could easily fit 60 grains into the modern cases I had. Many modern cases have lower capacity than their balloon head ancestors. A 300 grain bullet (got mine from Buffalo Arms) over 60 gr FFg is no mouse fart load.
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Old October 7, 2021, 07:28 PM   #13
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Black powder impossible to get right now after goex closed down
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Old October 7, 2021, 07:53 PM   #14
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I found in Cartridges of the World, 13th edition, 2012
300gr Lyman 456191, 25gr of IMR 4198. Rated 1450fps, 1410ft lbs.
An earlier edition, which is missing the first 5 pages, lists this as about max for older Rifles.
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Old October 7, 2021, 10:47 PM   #15
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Well just tried 19.5gr imr 4198 got 1030fps at least something usable now

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Old October 8, 2021, 05:35 AM   #16
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I bought 5 lb of Swiss powder last week. Goex is not the only game in town, although I hope somebody brings back Olde Eynsford. There are good BP substitutes for cartridge arms as well. I still have a supply of Alliant Black MZ. It is discontinued, but I believe APP has a similar formulation. Works great in cartridges and shotshells.
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