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Thread: 45-70 ammo choices

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    Default 45-70 ammo choices

    my son just purchased his first rifle. he got a henry 45-70. henry said they don't recommend the lever evolution ammo. we are wondering what ammo would be good to put through it at the range. he also wants to hunt moose and bear with this rifle and need some advise about ammo to hunt with. I am not familiar with lever guns and can use all the advise I can get.

    thanks matt

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    You'll hear lots of reco's for hot loads, and they're fine if your son and the gun can take them.

    But don't overlook the original "mild" factory loadings. Easy on the shoulder for learning to shoot the gun, yet plenty of moxy for moose. I'd want a little more for brown bear, but would have no qualms about using it for interior griz or black bear either. Not a Henry, but I probably put 100 of those through my rifle per single round of hotter stuff.

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    Member gunbugs's Avatar
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    Remington 405gr soft points. Inexpensive, pleasant to shoot.
    "A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercises, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind."

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    I load my own but don't understand why Henry doesn't recommend LeverEvolution? Can u explain. I did sight it in with LeverEvolution and must say they done good by me. This is a 100 yrd three shot group with a Skinner peep sight. ImageUploadedByTapatalk1427950533.630403.jpg

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    I try to keep some of the remington factory loaded 300gr silver box around.

    Not so bad at the range and pretty plenty for the interior blackies and mooses.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gunbugs View Post
    Remington 405gr soft points. Inexpensive, pleasant to shoot.
    That would undoubtedly be my choice, given your parameters.
    Foolishness is a moral category, not an intellectual one.

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    I have found some of the newer lever evoltion ammo to comming apart on just two layers of cardboard .I liked the old stuff but won't buy any more of the new. I've found whole jackets fully expanded between the two layers of cardboard
    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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    What a great opportunity to start reloading. I shoot a couple hundred 45/70 a month out of my guide gun and reloading is the only way to go. I use a mild load of Varget t or 3031.and a 405gr cast bullet at 1400fps. Plenty of power for anything. 45/70 is an easy caliber to reload and you can get a setup for less than a hundred bucks and be cranking out rounds for pennies. I get bulk cast bullets from Penn bullets and several other suppliers for about 20 to 25 cents each sometimes less. I plan on casting my own very soon and save even more.
    All that being said, factory loads from 350 to 450 and cast or jacketed should be fine.

  9. #9

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    I looked and looked but couldn't find the article. However some extensive penetration test were done using heavy cast bullets with gas checks and in the end it was determined that the 400 grain bullet traveling 1200 fps will penetrate deeper than when the very same bullet is pushed to 1800fps.

    I think we talked about it at length on this forum so it's probably in the archives somewhere(I didn't look there)and am short on time today. My feeling is that if a 400 grain bullet running 12-1300 ftps won't kill it then it probably ought to be left alone cuz it isn't from this planet.

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    thanks for the info guys. I will try to get some remington and federal and see what he likes to shoot best. jetsled the guy from henry said there can be feed issues with the last round in the tube with the lever evolution but he didn't elaborate.

    thanks matt

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    I agree with Mountaintrekker, IMR 3031 has always worked well for me. I use the Speer 400 gr flat nose because I use to live just outside Lewiston and buy them by the pound. My rifle really likes 50 grains of 3031 with the 400 gr bullet for about 1600 to 1700 fps. More than enough power for anything you will run into on this continent. Jim

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    Quote Originally Posted by jdb3 View Post
    I agree with Mountaintrekker, IMR 3031 has always worked well for me. I use the Speer 400 gr flat nose because I use to live just outside Lewiston and buy them by the pound. My rifle really likes 50 grains of 3031 with the 400 gr bullet for about 1600 to 1700 fps. More than enough power for anything you will run into on this continent. Jim
    I 2nd that, 50 gr, 3031 400 grain Speer This is my load also. I have settled on this for all around duty. Some would try to make a old workhorse shoot faster with the lever evolution stuff, and handloaded hot. Get caught up in the speed game, Each to there own ,But in my opinion, if you are trying to do that, should buy a different gun/cal.458 comes to mind. I have had one for about 40years, Been there and all done that. I bet I can get Jim to agree, I believe he has lots of experience with this too , that big and slow will get the job done. Want penetration check out some 500 grain cast Garrett stuff. Remember its where you hit them that counts. keep that gun and shots at reasonable distance and you wont be disappointed.Start slow with your son, don't know how old he is, but you start throwing the hard stuff in there, better use a pad for his shoulder. It will give off pretty good kick, don't want him closing his eyes after the first few shots. Good luck with it, Have fun.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gunbugs View Post
    Remington 405gr soft points. Inexpensive, pleasant to shoot.
    IIRC, this one displays the phrase "Safe for All Rifles" (or something to that effect)--that's what the Henry rifle needs.

    They worked well for my dad in his Trapdoor Springfield.

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    Yep, I totally agree. I too have been playing with the 45-70 for about 40 years and have tried all the loading variations. The hot loads do nothing more than injure your shoulder. Speeds higher than 1900fps are a waste of powder. The above mentioned load shoots more accurately than any other load in my 1895, 3 shot 11/32" group from a solid sitting position at 100 yards is my best group. IMR 3031 also works well with the 350 grain loads. Jim

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    i thank you all for your advise and will continue to look for the Remington ammo but all i have been able to find so far is the hornaday fusion 300 grain so that's what i got him so he could put a few round downrange. the gun handled very good not a lot of recoil to deal with (not as much as i expected). at 100 yard seated off a sandbag his holes were almost touching but not quite. you could touch all three with a quarter though. i think if we continue to shoot a few times a month all summer and try the different ammos out there he will be ready once moose season gets here

    thank you all again for your help
    matt

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by msaerls View Post
    i think if we continue to shoot a few times a month all summer and try the different ammos out there he will be ready once moose season gets here
    You've got it nailed.

    Start clearing up some freezer space, cuzz if he gets hair under the front sight, you're going to need it!

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