Has anyone worked up a smokeless hunting load for the 45-120 Sharps? I have a Pedersoli 1874 Long Range Express that I will be taking on a hunt this fall. The mould I am using is Lyman 457125 HQ. It has been throwing bullets weighing 525-530 grains. I have tried 5744 and my rifle did not like that powder one bit. Open to suggestions.
45-120 hunting load
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- Last Post 18 August 2019
What game do you intend to hunt? What kind of terrain, do you expect to have to take longer shots? I don't have any answers for you but maybe I can help you flesh out the questions.
My experience was with a .50-110 in a Marlin 1895 square bolt, original production with 1913 manufacturing date. This had a .33 WCF barrel that was bored to .50 caliber. I had hopes of Africa with it and a companion rifle in .45-90. Alas, money and time were factors limiting that trip and I sold the rifles when offered a 300% profit.
My experience with both was that smokeless powder did not provide the accuracy that Black Powder provided. I had a companion with a Winchester 1886 in .45-70 and another in .45-90 so we worked together. His experience was the same for the .45-90 while the .45-70 produced good accuracy with smokeless.
It could be the case capacity is too great to get consistent ignition. Along these lines, I am not one to use wads since I fear barrel-ringing.
The best result for both rifles was with Reloder #7 powder. I wish I had kept better records at that time.
Farm boy from Western Illinois, living in the Magical Pacific Northwest
Will be hunting moose in Newfoundland. The guide stated that ranges could be from 100 to 300 yards. The terrain is expected to be a marsh and pines as recommended footwear is 16" wetland hunting boots. I saw pictures of the hunting area and its not too mountainous.
From My limited Experience, and from what I have heard:
The limit on the .45 Caliber Black Powder cartridges for is the .45-90. Any more Capacity then that doesn't seem to work with smokeless.
Met a Guy at End of Trail from Idaho back in 1998. He Bought a Shiloh in .45-120, shot pretty good with Black Powder. But when He tried smokeless, didn't work. Cut some cases down to .45-110, didn't work. Bought some new Starline .45-100, that didn't work, Cut them down to .45-90, That worked.
I can't give you anymore info, it was a short conversation. But He said he was sending the Rifle back to Shiloh for a .45-90 bbl.
You could try Cream of Wheat filler. I have a friend that does that in his 1886's. A .40-82 and a .45-90, both with IMR3031 or IMR4198. He has 4 8lb kegs so he's never tried 5744 or Trail Boss.
Sorry that all I got.
Long time Caster/Reloader, Getting back into it after almost 10yrs. Life Member NRA 40+yrs, Life S.A.S.S. #375. Does this mean a description of me as a fumble-fingered knuckle-draggin' baboon. I also drool in my sleep. I firmly believe that true happiness is a warm gun. Did I mention how much I HATE auto-correct on this blasted tablet.
I assume that you want to use smokeless powder because of some regulation in Canada about the propellant. If this is the case then I guess that you are stuck with it . If it is not due to some stupid reg then use the black. I don't think that the air line will break down a round to check.
Roger has made an excellent suggestion about the use of COW as a filler. I have used it with the 458 Mag and the 38-55. I can't believe that you will have any trouble in that straight sided case. Where people get in trouble using COW as a filler is when they try to use it in bottle neck cases. The material apparently does not flow well through the shoulder constriction.................... Good Luck
Boilerman, Hi I'm new to the forum. Are you still looking for smokeless 45-120 loads. If so PM me and I can send you what I have. I spent last summer working up some loads for moose. I used alot of powders that you won't find in the reloading manuals. I used the Quickload software program to find some safe starting loads, and PressureTrace to verify pressures. I ended up with a Barnes 300gr TSX bullet using AR-Comp at about 2600fps out of my C Sharps Model 1875 34" barrel, 3/4" group at 100 yards (bench rest on a good day).
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