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Old August 24, 2023, 01:35 PM   #1
ligonierbill
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New sight for my Italian 1885

I'm preparing to offer a batch of firearms for sale, and was thinking to include my Uberti rendition of the Browning/Winchester 1885. Nice gun, shoots good, but it's pretty heavy for a hunting rifle. Nah, she's too pretty, and I like the old 45-70. So let's try her as a target rifle. I mounted a Lee Shavers midrange Soule this afternoon. This sight really impresses me, and the fit to my rifle was perfect.

So I'm thinking to abandon the 300-350 gr JHP for 500 cast. I already have a load for a Buffalo Arms 0.458 cast, but I am thinking of running some paper patch bullets. Any thoughts? The midrange sight has enough elevation for about 600 yards.
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Old August 24, 2023, 02:39 PM   #2
Jim Watson
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Paper patching looks tedious, but it will sure keep you out of the saloons.
While the Army and Winchester did not paper patch .45-70, Sharps did under the designation .45-75-420 2.1" Sharps Straight.
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Old August 24, 2023, 03:52 PM   #3
ligonierbill
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Well, I don't really want to stay out of the saloons. But I already do paper patched bullets for my 50-70. It's easy. The Brits ran paper patched bullets in the 577/450 Martini-Henry, and so do I. Lubed bullets are good as well. I'll go with whatever works best. What works best for y'all?
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Old August 25, 2023, 09:44 AM   #4
ocharry
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i guess my question would be

what is the twist on your barrel??

that 500 could be a little on the heavy side..but maybe not

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Old August 25, 2023, 01:35 PM   #5
ligonierbill
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Twist is 1:20. I've already run a 500 from Buffalo Arms with good success.
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Old August 25, 2023, 01:43 PM   #6
Jim Watson
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The Army thought a 22 twist was adequate for a 500 gr roundnose.

Sure, faster has advantages with even heavier bullets, but don't apply mouse gun science to the old timers.
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Old August 26, 2023, 09:26 AM   #7
ocharry
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not applying any kind of science...just a little experience

the reason i ask is i have a browning traditional hunter and it too has a 1-20 twist barrel and i tried the heavies in it and it dont really care for them...yes it does ok but i tried that small lyman round nose ...i think it is 380gr. (kinda sounds right..could be wrong) it really likes that bullet...right around 400-450 is the sweet spot for my rifle...it likes that other lyman bullet...think it is 425...little heavier than the 405...wider meplat....deer hammer i tell ya...lol

anyway i was just curious....if the 500's work, then by all means.... send them

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Old August 26, 2023, 12:08 PM   #8
ligonierbill
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If you're hunting, the 500s don't really make sense. Nor does a midrange Soule sight. That setup is for arcing bullets like a bowshot to land on a target of known distance. One nice thing about this sight is you can still use the buckhorn rear for hundred yard shots. Since the lowest position of the aperture looks right through the notch, there's no need to remove it and install a blank.

I also have a Trapdoor 1884 model. I haven't measured the twist, but I'll take Jim Watson's word for it. That rifle seems to prefer the 405 gr bullets. Of course, by 1891 when my rifle was made, the Army had gone to the 500 gr.

When I get to the range, I'll report my results, but it may be awhile. Too many projects going at once.
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Old August 27, 2023, 11:45 AM   #9
Jim Watson
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As I recalled, the Army really liked the .45-80-500 but did not have the budget for new barrels and ammo, so they just stuffed the 500 grain bullet in the 2.1" case.
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