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  #1  
Old 01-21-2007, 12:29 AM
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.45-70 Vs. Big Bears?


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So how well do you think a .45-70 with modern loads such as Buffalo Bore, Garrett, Grizzley, and hot hand loads would preform on big bears? What about big angry bears? I know alot of it has to do with bullet construction but I am speaking in general. Vince Lupo killed an elephant and a rino with Garrett ammo. He also killed a Hippo with it

Edited to clarify:

I re read my post and realized I sould clarify something. Bears in the lower 48 states. Also If I remember right he shot the hippo in the head.

Last edited by Zapzoo; 01-21-2007 at 02:20 AM.
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  #2  
Old 01-21-2007, 02:49 AM
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I hope Cabellas will stock Garrett ammo in their new stores in Canada. We have grizz up here you know.
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  #3  
Old 01-21-2007, 10:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zapzoo
So how well do you think a .45-70 with modern loads such as Buffalo Bore, Garrett, Grizzley, and hot hand loads would preform on big bears? What about big angry bears? I know alot of it has to do with bullet construction but I am speaking in general. Vince Lupo killed an elephant and a rino with Garrett ammo. He also killed a Hippo with it

Edited to clarify:

I re read my post and realized I sould clarify something. Bears in the lower 48 states. Also If I remember right he shot the hippo in the head.
The average black bear in the lower 48 is probably no more than 250 lbs. and the average grizz around 500 lbs. If a 45-70 with proper loads in competent hands can't dispatch even an attacking one of these (or the occasional larger than average one), then I don't know what will.
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  #4  
Old 01-21-2007, 03:32 PM
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I think if you put it in the right place Mr bear will die!
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  #5  
Old 01-24-2007, 09:05 AM
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Tis is a quote from the Garrett web page: "Garrett's really heavy-duty Hammerhead is a 540-grain SuperHardCast load delivering 1550-fps. This load has been used successfully to take Africa's Big Six." "For large, nasty, dangerous critters at close range, it would be most difficult to find anything more comforting than a Marlin 1895 or Winchester 1886 loaded with 45-70 Hammerheads from Garrett."
- John Taffin, GUNS magazine, December 2006
Also, on his web page is a picture of a big griz downed with his 540 gr. I know everybody hypes their own stuff, but I have been shooting Marshall's 525 Sledgehammer over 41 gr of H-322 producing 1550 fps from my guide gun. If that won't stop a bear, then I'm gonna stay home by the fire cause I can't shoot anything more powerful. Take one look at the bullet and you know you have moved into the upper levels of firepower.
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  #6  
Old 01-30-2007, 03:52 PM
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I think with the proper loads it would do well even on the big brown bears. Randy Garrett posted on here a while back on the penetration of the 45-70 and that it was out penetrating the 458 Win Mag. Here's his thread which is an interesting read:

http://shootersforum.com/showthread.htm?t=9085
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  #7  
Old 01-30-2007, 04:36 PM
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I wouldn't hesitate to go after a grizz with my 420 gr. cast bullets at 1850 fps.
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  #8  
Old 02-02-2007, 04:28 PM
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Like most things, the answer is situational. No doubt for close range hunting of big bears that is a very effective cartridge. At longer range and for a real bear stopper I'd prefer something else.

500+ grain 45-70 ballistics tend to drop off drastically past 100 yards and in my experience hunting ranges for large bears are likely to be further.

As a bear stopper, I have no problem with the cartridge at all I just don't think many of the rifles chambered for 45-70s are up to the task. Single shots are fine, except they only allow one shot - I'd prefer more. If you have the coin for a double I'd certainly go with that. Many people also like bigbore leveractions like the Marlin 1895 for "bear protection". They seem ideal except that of the several examples I've handled only a couple would reliably cycle ammuntion when held upside down or sideways. If you have one that will, great and maybe a good 'smith could make any of them cycle that way, I don't know. Anyway, I think that is an important consideration in choosing any stopping or protection gun.
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Old 02-03-2007, 07:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ratltrap
Like most things, the answer is situational. No doubt for close range hunting of big bears that is a very effective cartridge. At longer range and for a real bear stopper I'd prefer something else.

500+ grain 45-70 ballistics tend to drop off drastically past 100 yards and in my experience hunting ranges for large bears are likely to be further.

As a bear stopper, I have no problem with the cartridge at all I just don't think many of the rifles chambered for 45-70s are up to the task. Single shots are fine, except they only allow one shot - I'd prefer more. If you have the coin for a double I'd certainly go with that. Many people also like bigbore leveractions like the Marlin 1895 for "bear protection". They seem ideal except that of the several examples I've handled only a couple would reliably cycle ammuntion when held upside down or sideways. If you have one that will, great and maybe a good 'smith could make any of them cycle that way, I don't know. Anyway, I think that is an important consideration in choosing any stopping or protection gun.
A 350 grain Northfork pushed somewhat over 2100 fps makes the Marlin 1895 a 250 yard bear HUNTING gun.
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  #10  
Old 02-03-2007, 11:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zapzoo
So how well do you think a .45-70 with modern loads such as Buffalo Bore, Garrett, Grizzley, and hot hand loads would preform on big bears? What about big angry bears? I know alot of it has to do with bullet construction but I am speaking in general. Vince Lupo killed an elephant and a rino with Garrett ammo. He also killed a Hippo with it

Edited to clarify:

I re read my post and realized I sould clarify something. Bears in the lower 48 states. Also If I remember right he shot the hippo in the head.
Reply:

I think the 45-70, all around, is a good hunting cartridge. Will it kill a charging Alaskan Brown Bear or Cape Buffalo, is another story. In Africa, from the "pole" of many African PH's, a rifle when chambered with a 500 grain bullet should be able to reach velocities of around 2300-2400 fps.. This is to ensure maximum stopping power. A criteria needed to produce sufficent energy to stop a charge. Quite the contrary on what the ballistic's of the 45-70 is capable of producing.

The real question is, is the 45-70 the best choice?
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  #11  
Old 02-03-2007, 01:39 PM
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The best choise is the rifle/caliber that you can handle with accuracy and speed.
Hit him bad with a 458 WM and he will get you, hit him good with a 30-30 and you will win the battle.
Practice, practice, practice, and go and get him.
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  #12  
Old 02-03-2007, 04:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jackfish
A 350 grain Northfork pushed somewhat over 2100 fps makes the Marlin 1895 a 250 yard bear HUNTING gun.
True, but you never needed Garrett's (et al) for that. Don't know about elephant or hippo, but I've heard that the 45-70 was killing a few bears and other shaggy beasts at long range while John Marlin was still pondering a better black powder derringer. Of course at that time the 45-70 was a state-of-the-art cartridge as were the rifles shooting it. As has been previously noted, there are better tools now.

Last edited by Ratltrap; 02-03-2007 at 06:46 PM.
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  #13  
Old 02-03-2007, 08:18 PM
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Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldfordjr
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In Africa, from the "pole" of many African PH's, a rifle when chambered with a 500 grain bullet should be able to reach velocities of around 2300-2400 fps.. This is to ensure maximum stopping power.
Looking at John Linebaugh's Penetration Tests, once you get over around 1600fps, penetration actually drops. So why would 2300-2400fps give more stopping power when the penetration would be less of that of a hardcast slug out of a .45-70? Wouldn't the meplat of the .45-70 also give a bigger wound channel over the round nose solid?

Jim
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Old 02-03-2007, 09:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DakotaElkSlayer
Looking at John Linebaugh's Penetration Tests, once you get over around 1600fps, penetration actually drops. So why would 2300-2400fps give more stopping power when the penetration would be less of that of a hardcast slug out of a .45-70? Wouldn't the meplat of the .45-70 also give a bigger wound channel over the round nose solid?

Jim
That's a very good question. Vince Lupo took all the Africa dangerous game with Garrett's ammo. That's a 550g bullet going around 1500fps.

I think the answer in part is that comparing Linebaugh-Garrett type loads to the Africa double gun is apples-to-oranges.

They shoot bullets of different materials with different shapes out of guns with different twist rates. I think all those things influence the results, but so far I haven't seen anything scientific about it.

Grizz
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  #15  
Old 02-04-2007, 05:55 AM
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From the link I posted a pretty interesting finding by Mr. Randy Garrett:


Very interestingly, if one takes the Hornady 500-grain .458 diameter solid bullet and compares the penetration that results from impact speeds varying from about 1500-fps to 2500-fps, one finds that the higher impact speeds produce the least penetration. When driven to about 1500-fps (as the 45-70 will do) one finds that such solids produce nearly 6-feet of penetration in wet newspapers. When the same bullet is driven to about 2100-fps (as is characteristic of the 458 Winchester Magnum) one finds that the penetration is reduced to about 4 to 4 and 1/2 feet. When one tests the same bullet at 2300-2400 fps (as is characteristic of the 458 Lott) one finds that the penetration comes up nearly 20% short of that produced by the 458 Winchester. And when one tests the same bullet at the blistering speeds characteristic of the mighty 460 Weatherby Magnum, one finds that the penetration achieved is the most shallow produced by the various 458s.

What is apparent from testing is that penetration stops increasing at impact speeds above about 1250-1300 fps. When the impact speeds significantly surpass about 1600-fps, there is a very definite and measurable decrease in penetration depth. This raises some interesting issues regarding the relationship between kinetic energy generation and impact-effect. Although higher velocity projectiles always generate more kinetic energy they clearly do not produce deeper penetration, and when the velocities reach the levels common to today's magnums, the increases in velocity result in significantly reduced penetration. Simply stated, the faster they strike the faster they stop. If the builders of the various 458 Magnum calibers would simply advocate driving the heaviest bullets their calibers can push to about 1500-1600 fps, the super-powerful magnums would produce penetration depth unobtainable with 500-grain solid bullets at any speed. A 650-700 grain 458 solid at 1550-fps from the magnum 458s would produce penetration that would clearly redefine the 458 Magnums. However such an increase in bullet weight would require faster twist barrels and would certainly bring howls of protest from those who purchased 458 Magnums previously, since those guns would require rebarreling in order to accommodate the heavier bullets. As a consequence of this, I don't think any of us should hold our breaths waiting for that kind of change to occur.

Fortunately for all of us who love the 45-70, it can be considered to be the deepest penetrating of the various 458 calibers. This is not due to any particular inherent superiority, but due to the 45-70s "inability" to achieve the kinds of speeds with heavy bullets that leads to decreases in penetration. The reasons why high impact speeds reduce penetration are not well understood. However, anyone who takes the time to run comparative penetration tests will find that those of us who pack a good 45-70 with heavy bullets need not take a back seat to any other 458 caliber, especially when the game is heavy and the penetration requirements are great.
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Old 02-04-2007, 10:29 AM
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Isn't all that just a roundabout way of saying that the bullet construction should be considered also? If the bullet is designed to give best preformance at 2400 fps (A thicker and tougher jacket and a different nose design) wouldn't it be expected to out preform a bullet made for 1400 fps at 2400 fps?

If the bullet is made to work at 1400 fps it will give more penetration at 1400 than at 2400. If it is made to work best at 2400 it will give more penetration at 2400. Otherwise you could slow it down still more and get even more penetration (maybe untill it was completely still and then it would go through anything?) Mr. Linebaugh's statement was true but it does not say anything about bullets that he did not test. If a theory does not hold true for the extremes then the data is probably incomplete.
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Old 02-04-2007, 01:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by horseman 1
Isn't all that just a roundabout way of saying that the bullet construction should be considered also? If the bullet is designed to give best preformance at 2400 fps (A thicker and tougher jacket and a different nose design) wouldn't it be expected to out preform a bullet made for 1400 fps at 2400 fps?

If the bullet is made to work at 1400 fps it will give more penetration at 1400 than at 2400. If it is made to work best at 2400 it will give more penetration at 2400. Otherwise you could slow it down still more and get even more penetration (maybe untill it was completely still and then it would go through anything?) Mr. Linebaugh's statement was true but it does not say anything about bullets that he did not test. If a theory does not hold true for the extremes then the data is probably incomplete.
I agree. There are also many other variables to consider and I've seen no comprehensive testing of any of this information. For example, the test media makes a huge difference. Try those tests in ballistic gelatin or the media suggested by Bob Hagel (clay & sawdust sleeves) and you'll likely get different results from the wet newspaper test. In this case PH experience has to be weighed heavily against ballistic tests.

Last edited by Ratltrap; 02-04-2007 at 01:23 PM.
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  #18  
Old 02-04-2007, 02:22 PM
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The way I figure it, The British had 50 years to figure out what worked during the golden age of African hunting. They would have stopped at the high-pressure .45-70 power level if it worked, instead of the .470 Nitro Express level. It gets expensive at this level and the majority of hunters weren't rich and titled. They were junior army officers, farmers and guides.

Bye
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Old 02-04-2007, 07:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack Monteith
The way I figure it, The British had 50 years to figure out what worked during the golden age of African hunting. They would have stopped at the high-pressure .45-70 power level if it worked, instead of the .470 Nitro Express level. It gets expensive at this level and the majority of hunters weren't rich and titled. They were junior army officers, farmers and guides.

Bye
Jack
And due to the prices, I think this is where the 9.3 x 62 came in and was popular with those folks.
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Old 02-04-2007, 09:19 PM
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If you can't kill a bear with a 45-70 you might as well quit! There are now quite a few good loads available to you to kill just about anything you would like.
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