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45-120 Reloading recipe

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I have been working up loads of my 45-120 sharps with a 1-20 twist 34" Douglas barrel with mixed results.  I have been using ole Eenlsford 1 1/2 F powder between 100 -110 grains with 535 postell bullets.  At 200 yards best I can do is a 12" pie plate grouping.


Suggestions would certainly be welcomed.



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 This is how I load the 45-70


  1. Fires form brass, no resizing. 
  2. 20:1 or 25:1 lead tin, Paul Jones 535gr 45001, .459 sizing, Vigilante lube or SPG
  3. CCI BR2 primers.
  4. Primers wads under the primer, newsprint. You could dispense with that.
  5. Expand slightly - the case will chamber, and accept the bullet. That’s takes trial and error to get right.
  6. Used a drop tube.
  7. Vegetable wads, topped with newsprint wads (prevents the wad from sticking).
  8. Used a compression die. Don’t use the bullet to compressed the powder.
  9. Seat the bullet. I only have to use the straight line seated on 1 in 50.
  10. I generally will you the cartridges in a box, bullet side up, for two weeks to a month. That way the lube sticks so I can withdraw them, and not lose the bullet.
For years I use a blow tube on the 45-70. Had to go to wiping with the 38-50. If you go to the blow tube, deep breaths. The air in the lungs are 100% humidity, the air in the airway is not. 
Edited by Uriah, SASS # 53822
Bullet weight
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The twist rate on your barrel is indeed marginal. Do you have any lighter bullets you can try?




I am always amazed at the Quigley, the bucket, you can hear the unstable bullets going down range.

Wow wow wow wow etc.

And they hit!




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