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Thread: Anyone using 45.70 as their primary large game cartridge?

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    Default Anyone using 45.70 as their primary large game cartridge?

    I'm leaning toward this cartridge but I'm a little turned off by the rainbow trajectory... How do you folks like it and what ranges and type of game are you taking? I have a guide gun I'd like to get more familiar with and I'm considering using it for moose, black bear, maybe caribou if I get the opportunity. I also get the warm fuzzy feeling knowing that I have a thumper in my hands should I have to use it for something ornery with teeth.
    I've got a pile of 405 grain cast projectiles I'm going to start loading and find something that groups well in the 1500fps range. So I'm thinking this is going to be a 200 yard or less rifle. (?)
    The rifle just feels right in my hands and shoulders so well, I keep picking it up over my others, so I'm thinking I need to look into it a bit more.
    Thoughts?

    Mountaintrekker

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mountaintrekker View Post
    I'm leaning toward this cartridge but I'm a little turned off by the rainbow trajectory... How do you folks like it and what ranges and type of game are you taking? I have a guide gun I'd like to get more familiar with and I'm considering using it for moose, black bear, maybe caribou if I get the opportunity. I also get the warm fuzzy feeling knowing that I have a thumper in my hands should I have to use it for something ornery with teeth.
    I've got a pile of 405 grain cast projectiles I'm going to start loading and find something that groups well in the 1500fps range. So I'm thinking this is going to be a 200 yard or less rifle. (?)
    The rifle just feels right in my hands and shoulders so well, I keep picking it up over my others, so I'm thinking I need to look into it a bit more.
    Thoughts?

    Mountaintrekker
    I used one for a good while when I first got up to Alaska all I heard was praise of the 1895 in 45/70. I love the guide gun I had but sold it and got a XLR 45/70 and liked it as well but range is the limiting factor for it. Now like you said the rainbow trajectory is what makes it difficult to use. I got my Caribou last year at less than 40yds. If you are good at bushcraft and know how to keep the wind in your favor etc you really can do quite well with the 45/70 but when I had mine I couldnt shoot at the black bear I saw one time as it was about 400yds away and I just didnt like that. I used a 338wm after that and had no issues at any ethical range. I know have moved to a 375 ruger for big uglys and a 7mm Roy for good flat shooting at non-ill tempered game. If you really want to keep and use that 45/70 its excellent for think wooded areas but not ideal for wide open spaces where brown bears and caribou are found. Not saying all of them like open areas but it will limit you for sure. Get a quick detach ring setup and a scope with ballistic plex etc and set it up to work at 200yds and know the drops then up close you can either use the ballistic reticle or pull off the glass and use a good ghost ring sight setup such as XS ghost rings or the wild west guns ghost ring. The factory sights leave alot to be desired and will hinder accurate shooting at ranges off 75 to 100yds. This is my opinion YMMV. good luck and shot straight

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    Member Bighorse's Avatar
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    If ya got em smoke em! As long as your not starving take a risk and up the challenge. Use that pile of ammo for practice and save a few rounds for hunting season.

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    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    We carry ours on walks through the woods, in the boat while commuting/fishing, and float hunting in the fall.
    It's a thumper for up close and out to 200 yards.
    When I moose hunt or am on the Brooks chasing caribou I take the .338 for it's extra reach.
    BK

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Used one for thirty plus years and it never failed me. Found that 1,800 to 1,900 fps worked best for me but I never take game past 100 yards. With proper sight and knowing your gun you can punch paper at 500 yards and grin doing it. The Hornady 350gr rn was the best hunting bullet for me and it worked well on brown bear, one passing stem to stern on a 75 yard bear facing me head on.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Iím going to try the same thing this year. Iím going out this weekend for black bear. Going to start with a 405gr. Buffalo boar. If this gun can drop Buffalos, it will drop aBlack Bear. Hope to get a moose with ittoo. If I can hit steel targets at 200yd standing with irons, youíll be all over them with a scope. Good luck and let me know how it turns outfor you.

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    I too used the 350 hornady in my sharps, unfortunatley I missed a bull moose, when i hit my set trigger i accidently bumped my main tirgger and completely miss a bull at 110 yards, but suck is life

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    I've been carrying my XLR for the last few years and hope to take a bear and moose with it this year. I shoot the 420gr Garrett +p Hammerheads and my rifle really likes them. For longer range hunting I use my 270.

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    Member tzieli22's Avatar
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    Yeah as everyone else is saying... Very nice gun/round. I've killed several moose and bear with mine. If you have a lot of 405's - load them up. I also don't like shooting much past 100yrds. +1 for Garret's (420, and the 540grn) incredible round IMO. Plus it's just a really fun gun. If you want to do a few things to it, WWG will set you up with nice sites, lrg loop lever, new ejecter. I use a lot of other guns too, but also seem to have my 45/70 with me at all times as well.
    Tony

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    Member akgun&ammo's Avatar
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    45/70's have a lot of room to play and have fun. My normal deer load is a 260 gr cast. My most accurate load is a 518 gr paper patch. The most damage I did to a deer was with a 400 gr heavy load, left a "Football" size hole in the chest. (needless to say that buck did not go far!) On a private land hunt, I had a blast (pun intended) shooting running rabbits with 300 gr soft cast, and a few with a shot load made up for s rattlesnakes.

    If you do the three P's, yuo can harvest just about anything that walks with a 45/70.
    elephant, cape buff, deer, turkey, and even moose! Just look in the library for stories of the 45/70 in africa, india, and other exotic places.

    And with the benifit of free military loaded ammo in our not to distant past, a large number of bison here in the old west. Just ask us Indians how good a 45/70 is/was.


    Chris

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    The 45-70 is a fun rifle and very good within it's limitations. Those limitations should prevent it from being a primary weapon. So many other calibers do just as well at close range as the 45-70 but are far superior to it at longer ranges.
    NRA Life Member since 1974

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    Member akgun&ammo's Avatar
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    Bolie,

    Some people like a little limitation in their life. Bow hunters can't take ethicial shots longer than about 40 yards. Yet, target archers have shot targets at 300 plus yards on TV and other events. Handgun hunters are divided into revolver, hand cannon, and some pistols, but they "normally" don't shoot farther than 75 yards or so. Yet, the 460 and the hand cannon shooters have taken game at yards that compare to the rifle.

    Don't knock people who want a challange every now and then.


    Chris

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    Member tzieli22's Avatar
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    +1 for what Chris said. Sure many think there are better rounds, and maybe so. But the original ask was "anyone using the 45/70 as a primary round for large game". It's an awesome round period, and can take "any" North American animal and I wouldn't think twice (or don't) about using mine for any animal here in Alaska or in the L 48. I don't own just one gun, but if I could only have one... this would be one I would consider. Just my opinion obviously, but I also like my others as well. My 45/70 spends a lot of time with me. It's a great gun to have in my boat, in camps, and is an easy handling gun is all. Safe hunting and shooting to all.


    Quote Originally Posted by akgun&ammo View Post
    Bolie,

    Some people like a little limitation in their life. Bow hunters can't take ethicial shots longer than about 40 yards. Yet, target archers have shot targets at 300 plus yards on TV and other events. Handgun hunters are divided into revolver, hand cannon, and some pistols, but they "normally" don't shoot farther than 75 yards or so. Yet, the 460 and the hand cannon shooters have taken game at yards that compare to the rifle.

    Don't knock people who want a challange every now and then.


    Chris
    Tony

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    No round to hit the market in the last hundred years takes game better than those that came before them.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    I think my wifes 450 bushmaster is better than my 45/70!
    BK

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    Member HCL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    No round to hit the market in the last hundred years takes game better than those that came before them.
    Hard to argue with that!
    My Guide gun is my go to. Fun, practical, handy and plenty for anything i want or need to shoot.

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    Member Kay9Cop's Avatar
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    I like the .45-70 and have used mine for hunting. What kept me from making it my go-to gun was wind drift; even the Hornady FTX with its better BC was getting pushed 12" at 200 yards in a 10 mph wind, which is a light breeze for a lot of the places I hunted.
    "Beware the man with only one gun; he may know how to use it."

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    Just to add a little sidetrack to this thread, what rounds are people using to shoot say a black bear, a moose and a deer. I am considering taking my guide gun as my primary gun to shoot a black bear in PWS later in May and was trying to decide what rounds to take with me. I have to sight in my new XS ghost rings so I have a chance to set it up just right before I go. I have at my disposal a couple boxes of Garrett 540+P Hammerheads which I think are probably a bit much for a black bear but will work. I have some buffalo bore something or others (can't remember and I am not at home) that would work and a have a couple boxes of off the shelf (Remington I think) regular old 45/70. Ideally I would like to sight in the gun using the Garrets and use them, but at $80+ a box and the difficulty at getting them to Ak I am considering using something else. Then how about for a deer or moose or bou?
    2007 Kingfisher 2825 - Stor Fisk

    Civilization ends at the waterline. Beyond that, we all enter the food chain, and not always right at the top. -- Hunter S. Thompson

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    If you would pick up a simple Lee loader with a few boxed of Hornady 350gr rn and load to 1.850fps your load will work for everything and cost less than one box of the high dollar stuff.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Member JR2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    If you would pick up a simple Lee loader with a few boxed of Hornady 350gr rn and load to 1.850fps your load will work for everything and cost less than one box of the high dollar stuff.
    That is in the plans for the future, actually a neighbor of mine is a active reloader and has said if I will buy the dies and such he will help me load up some rounds. Just have to get around to it with all my other hobbies.
    2007 Kingfisher 2825 - Stor Fisk

    Civilization ends at the waterline. Beyond that, we all enter the food chain, and not always right at the top. -- Hunter S. Thompson

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