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Thread: BPCR hunting

  1. #1
    Member whateveri8's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Juneau - Auke Bay

    Smile BPCR hunting

    I've always been a fan of Muzzle loader hunting except for loading them.

    I want to hunt the 2010 season with a black powder cartridge rifle.

    I's been looking at building one on a Ruger #1 or a Winchester 1885 or the like.

    then one night I realized when I was awoken by two cats fighting, I went for the Ruger .458 Lott because I enjoyed watching the impact of a 501gr woodleigh lion load on impact of a stray house cat. (splattah!)

    Well, I live in town to my chagrin and those days living out away from people and being able to shoot anytime I want are gone. sadly miss shooting invasive creatures with large magnum loads.

    In my sorrow I had an epiphany! load the 458 with black powder and walla! I have a bolt action BPCR, right?

    brass check!
    bullets in just about any size and expanding quality I want check!
    don't have to buy another rifle - sadly, but check!
    will emulate that extreme knockdown that a muzzle loader delivers? I assume it would do to bullet weight and charge capacity...

    Any one into bpcr and really into the science of my Idea can give me some technical info on this seeming cool idea?

    A Lott cartridge is (rounded off) 85 grains of powder so It should be close to a 45-90 bpcr in performance and velocity is my uneducated thoughts on this load.

    what say thee?
    God, Guns and Guts is what made America Great

  2. #2


    I expect you'll be delighted with performance, especially with heavier bullets. I've got a 50-140 Sharpes and though not a 45 cal, it can shed a little light for you. Basically you just aren't going to get a lot of extra velocity out of longer cases past a certain point. The longer cases with more powder were all about pushing heavier bullets to the same velocities as lighter bullets in shorter cases. My 50-140 won't don't much faster than a 50-70 or a 50-90 with the 400-500 grain bullets they use, but when you start pushing a 650-700 grain bullet at those same velocities, magic starts to happen..... Er, if you can call it that, because it really kills at both ends with such heavy bullets. To the extent that your Lott can push heavier bullets, it will be at least as good or better than a 45-90. Just don't go loading 300's or 350's and expecting them to go much faster than 405's or 500's. The velocity gains with lightweight "express" bullets aren't all that great, and come at the expense of the kind of power heavy bullets give you. That whole sequence is kind of the root behind Elmer Keith's fascination with large, long bullets for taking game. He grew up in the era of BP cartridge guns and tried to carry the concept over into smokeless rounds. And succeeded!

    Biggest hassle will be in cleaning your gun. Nothing beats soapy water, no matter what the advertising on new products say. And yeah, without a lot of care, you're going to be leaking it down into the trigger group and elsewhere. Name of the game, whether shooting muzzleloaders or BPCR. I've got a bunch of black powder rounds, but almost never shoot BP or modern subs through them for the simple hassle of cleaning. But for the pure fun of it, I do match the BP velocties with cast bullets and modern powders. Gotta love it.

  3. #3

    Default Nope

    Your #1 certainly can/could be used as a BPCR. However I believe the powder capacity would be close to 100 grns. Black powder and smokeless weights and densities aren't the same.
    Check your case capacity with FF or equivalent type powder filled to the bullet base location.
    IF you want to increase powder charges further use a drop tube approx. 12" long.
    You will probably only need to use standard rifle primers instead of magnum primers.
    MARK the ammo that is loaded with BP so you don't end up with the wrong ammo at the wrong time/place.
    Shake well, clean WELL ! Enjoy
    " Americans will never need the 2nd Amendment, until the government tries to take it away."

    On the road of life..... Pot holes keep things interesting !

  4. #4


    Good point Bav01. Black powder is measured by volume and not weight.


    Have a hard look at the Lyman #462560 cast bullet. It's 550 grains and has a great big meplat. I haven't tried it with BP, but I doubt you'd need to used the gas check at BP velocities with something like a #2 alloy or a little softer.

    But I will say this.... Launched out of my 458 Winnie Ruger #1 at around 1300 fps with 2400, it's a stone killer and accurate as can be. You can push it to close to 2000fps with slower powders, but you'll never hit that range with BP. Dont' need to, either.


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