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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I placed an order for a Shiloh Sharps with occasional tournaments (perhaps) in mind at some point. It will take a year to deliver, but that will give me time to investigate my options and collect enough egg money to foot the bill!

The Shiloh is semi-custom, meaning my options are limited aside from their basic menu selection specs., e.g., 18" twist.

Cutting right to the chase, if any of youz know of a bullet that seems to be favored for accuracy from a barrel with an 18" twist, AND just happen to know the freebore and neck dimensions (tight neck chamber), I'd be "all ears"!

Also... what might be some good smokeless powder loads - my goal is sub MOA using a vernier tang peep site.

A penny for your thoughts!!!!

Paul.
 

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I've shot a Ruger #1 for several years. I don't know how the chamber and barrel will compare to yours. I've shot the RCBS 405 grain bullet, their 500 grain bullet and a few of the lighter weight jacketed bullets. The 405 shot well, cast from clip on wheel weights with a gas check. The jacketed bullets shot well but it seemed like you had to play with them more to find the load. I recently received a new mold that I ordered from Accurate Molds. Its a 405 grain clone and I ordered it in .460 diameter. Its a great looking mold and cast well but I have not been able to shoot any of them yet. If you plan to cast for your new rifle I highly recommend that you check out Tom's website Accurate Molds. I favor the older extruded powders like 4895 and 3031 and CCI primers. Most shooters like Star Line brass. I just load these with a conventional RCBS 3 die set on a Rockchucker.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Thanks 4 the replies, gentlemen!

I used to "do black powder", but moved on and sold all my casting stuff (pot, molds, lube swag dies, etc.)...and am reluctant to go there again. BUT! if that is what it takes to at least be in the running @ matches, then I'd consider it. But, there are a number of companies making 458 jacketed bullets specifically for the 45-70s. I'd have exhaust my search among them B 4 (reluctantly) getting back into casting. :rolleyes:

Looking at the twist rate (18") and chamber dimensions for the Shiloh '74 45-70, it appears that the 405 gn blt is the one to beat for paper punching. Thoughts?

(And, thanks especially for the powder recommendations!)
 

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45-70

Paul, my rifle shot lead bullets better than jacketed. If that's true for you, it's probably possible to buy as cast bullets and just size them yourself or maybe you can order them sized for your rifle.
 

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45-70 bullets

Paul, I talked to a guy at the range today who was shooting your rifle. He was using 305 grain lead bullets from Missouri bullet co Said they're available in several sizes to fit your barrel. John
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Thanks, John x 2!

I'm getting waaay ahead of the curve (delivery in about 12 months), but far as the bbl goes, twist is "set" at 18", but chamber reamer and bbl length are open to be specified for quite a while yet.

My intent is to shoot whatever bullets work best, of course: cast OR jacketed. However, I'm hoping jacketed work best or at least as good as the best lead blt might work. (I'll prolly WS2 coat the jacketed bullets - at least.)

Barrel length: I'm NOT going to mount a scope, but rather use the vernier tang peep and an MVA (spirit level) globe front sight. I'm considering the max length of 34" - as much for the max sight radius as anything. But, too, every bit of velocity potential is good to have, unless the harmonics would be better with something a bit shorter. I'm open to recommendations that are based on empirical results with a "BR" Sharps in 45 cal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
You might be a "GUN NUT" if..."

From this web site some several years ago, I remember a thread starter with the heading: "You might be a gun nut if..."

As I recall, I guess I'm one, cuz I ordered dies and bullets and brass...for a gun and caliber I don't have!:eek::D

45-70 Starline cases (from Midway) seem to have very close tolerances - far as neck wall thickness goes: I grabbed a handful out of a box of 100 cases, and went to work with my ball micrometer. Wall thickness surprised me - only ten thousandths thick (on par with my 6PPC) with variance from .0101 to .0106 extreme spread of .0005, and average variance = .0003!

I wuz initially "hot to trot" over securing neck turning tooling, but I don't think skimming .0005 or less is even practical, assuming my K&M can turn them that close!

Not a lot of ppl precision prep 45-70 cases, apparently. Finding tooling is a challenge. Now that so many are playing with the 50 BMG and big Chetech (sp?) stuff, at least tooling for those calibers is now becoming readily available. Can 45 cal be far behind or even need to be?

Anywayz...this straight-wall, big bore precision shooting sorta feels like charting new territory - and it IS for me at least. The road to the success isn't pounded into a wide swath of dust by thousands of feet like most BR calibers are. It's more like a quiet, seldom used deer trail through the tall grass, with only a trace of those having gone before.

Going to stick with vernier tang sights with micrometer windage "clicks" and globe front sights with integrated spirit level = "high tech" back in the buffalo smacking days. (And of course there's the incident where Billy Dixon shot a Comanche(?) warrior off his horse at Adobe Walls, Tx from ~1200 yards with that setup [tho Dixon admitted later that he was actually aiming at the horse at the time!:rolleyes:]). Smacking a PD off a mound at 500+ yards with "open" sights using one shot...would be doing "something", no?

There's no practical reason for all the fuss, except the challenge of a personal quest. But, if I'm boring y'all...I'll shut up and go play with my new dies and leave your alone!:D
 

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Sharps makes a truly beautiful rifle! I hope you will post pictures of it when it arrives.

I guess I never heard of anyone turning case necks on straight wall cases unless they were doing a radical case forming job. .56 Spencer from .50 Gov cases or something similar. I'll bet that your rifle will shoot great with a precision weighed powder charge, a little detailed case prep and maybe using a competition seating die.

I like your analogy of the deer trail! My first thoughts were of an African game trail through dangerous game territory! But it won't be that way for you, not with your experience! Anyway, I'm looking forward to seeing your rifle and hearing about you loading for it.

I have read several versions of Billy Dixon's famous shot. Legend has is being right at a mile. Other versions have it at a little less. The story I like best and which has a chance of being accurate goes something like this. Supposedly the Indians stopped out at what they considered to be out of range. Billy's friends kept prompting him to take the shot and He actually set up and backed off a few times while saying that it was just too far. And supposedly the Indian was only stunned. Something that the Buffalo Hunters did not know at the time. Mr Dixon was reputed to be an excellent shot. I seem to remember that someone wrote something about the bullet drop in Varmint Hunter Magazine one time but I don't remember what it was.

Sorry for the long rambling post!
 

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Paul, while you are waiting for your rifle to be built, it might be interesting to do some more fundamental, basic ballistics thought experiments with a ballistics program. What about some basics like the effect of bullet weight and B.C. on your target. What about point blank range, sight adjustment changes, bullet time of flight, etc. There might be some real surprises, given the rainbow-like arcs on 45-70 type calibers. Hitting a PD at distance would be fun, but I bet it is a lot harder than shooting a steel buffalo at 500yds, especially with non-optical tang sights. Think artillery.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Paul, while you are waiting for your rifle to be built, it might be interesting to do some more fundamental, basic ballistics thought experiments with a ballistics program. What about some basics like the effect of bullet weight and B.C. on your target. What about point blank range, sight adjustment changes, bullet time of flight, etc. There might be some real surprises, given the rainbow-like arcs on 45-70 type calibers. Hitting a PD at distance would be fun, but I bet it is a lot harder than shooting a steel buffalo at 500yds, especially with non-optical tang sights. Think artillery.
Ah, once again we think alike...and don't think I'm not worried!:D

Back in '00 or '01 I built an Excel spreadsheet to generate graphs for sight settings over user defined range limits, taking into consideration all the exterior trajectory factors you mentioned, as well as graphing predicted energy transfer for various expansion rates/calibers/terminal velocities resulting from different bullet weights and shapes, etc.

The spreadsheet is populated with the exterior ballistics formulas out of the Sierra Reloading manual (an excellent read, BTW), which prove to be as accurate as the data it crunches (you know: "garbage in is garbage out!" goes w/o saying.:rolleyes:)

I may have already crunched some data results for a friend needing graphs for a 458 Win mag. And, too, I seem to recall running some graphs for someone's 45-70 in a Ruger #1 (a real thumper too!). And, (if anyone is interested), I'll post some sample graphs for the Sharps if I can find some velocity data for a 45-70 and a 34" barrel!:rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Sharps makes a truly beautiful rifle! I hope you will post pictures of it when it arrives.

I guess I never heard of anyone turning case necks on straight wall cases unless they were doing a radical case forming job. .56 Spencer from .50 Gov cases or something similar. I'll bet that your rifle will shoot great with a precision weighed powder charge, a little detailed case prep and maybe using a competition seating die.

I like your analogy of the deer trail! My first thoughts were of an African game trail through dangerous game territory! But it won't be that way for you, not with your experience! Anyway, I'm looking forward to seeing your rifle and hearing about you loading for it.

I have read several versions of Billy Dixon's famous shot. Legend has is being right at a mile. Other versions have it at a little less. The story I like best and which has a chance of being accurate goes something like this. Supposedly the Indians stopped out at what they considered to be out of range. Billy's friends kept prompting him to take the shot and He actually set up and backed off a few times while saying that it was just too far. And supposedly the Indian was only stunned. Something that the Buffalo Hunters did not know at the time. Mr Dixon was reputed to be an excellent shot. I seem to remember that someone wrote something about the bullet drop in Varmint Hunter Magazine one time but I don't remember what it was.

Sorry for the long rambling post!
T'will be innerestink! :D
 
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