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Old 07-13-2012, 05:05 PM
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Could a 458 win mag bolt action be used for a donor rifle? I want a bolt action 45/70....
"There is no hunting like the hunting of man. And those who have hunted armed men & liked it , care for nothing else there after" Hemingway
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Old 07-14-2012, 03:08 AM
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Location: SC
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Originally Posted by DOGMAN View Post
Could a 458 win mag bolt action be used for a donor rifle? I want a bolt action 45/70....
I believe that if I had a .458 and wanted a .45-70, I'd just download .458s to .45-70 levels. Even if I had to buy loading equipment, the savings in $$ and hassle would be great.
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Old 07-14-2012, 05:10 AM
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: North Eastern South Dakota
Posts: 521
Originally Posted by Kamate View Post
I have a SMLE Number 4 Mk 1 in 45-70, shoots sweetly. I wanted something different I was going to build it myself but another gunsmith mate of mine rang me up and told me he'd just built one with me in mind LOL. I shot 3 Buffalo with it in the NT here in Oz. Middle of the road Number 1 loads show no signs of excess pressure. Love it.
I think a SMLE would be a good option and so would the 1914 Enfield. I read an article not too long ago (for me that's less than 30 years) about a guy who made a SMLE 45-90 and had to modify the magazine. He was trying to prove a point on how the Africans could have built a powerful enough rifle to anything and on a budget.
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Old 07-20-2012, 02:08 PM
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The 303 has the same or close to the same bolt face. Gibbs tank carbine was a bolt 45/70 if you can find one.
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Old 07-20-2012, 02:13 PM
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Gibbs Summit .45/70 Bolt-Action Carbine - YouTube watch this
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Old 12-30-2012, 09:30 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 60
If one is going to do this, I really can't see doing it on anything but a Mosin Nagant.

The only other rifle whose price is currently in the same ballpark as the MN would be the M1895 Steyr-Mannlicher. As MN conversions have already been done and therefore has demonstrated that the magazine can be modified to cycle the .45-70 rounds, So low price and can feed the round, why crapshoot with anything else?

Siamese Mausers aren't exactly cheap nor easy to find anymore.

The only round that has a larger rim would be the French 8mmx51R Lebel from the M1886 Lebel and the Berthier. It's actually bigger than the .45-70, dia 0.63 vs dia 0.608. But the French rifles use a tubular magazine and Mannlicher style en bloc respectively.

Obviously the Lee Enfield can be converted but not nearly as cheaply as the MN. Besides, the LE is the ugliest military rifle that isn't French.

The MN is quite handsome once you replace the stock. But then again most things look better when to take them out of the box.

If one wanted to try and make a .45-70 rifle from a modern platform, one could try using the current Savage offering.

Supposedly the bolt heads on Savages can be swapped according Eabco.com. The largest cartridge Savage currently chambers is the .338 Lapua magnum, 0.588. It'd need to be opened 0.020.

The .45-70 OAL is shorter than a .308 so it could use the short action. The Savage barrel is easily swapped. The biggest question is if the rimmed cartridge can be made to work in the Savage magazine.
Maybe the parts from their shotgun bolt action magazine would work.

Last edited by Wolfsbane; 12-30-2012 at 09:31 PM. Reason: add info
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Old 12-31-2012, 12:34 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: bainbridge, ga
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Check out the Swiss Vetterli. It is a big bore bolt action with a tube magazine. You can get it set up for centerfire.

The easy way would be find a 458 Mag and just load it to your specs. Sounds like fun.

Last edited by ironhead7544; 12-31-2012 at 12:36 AM.
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Old 12-31-2012, 10:38 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 60
I really can't see a reason to even consider using the Vetterli action.

It's a generation older than the oldest Mosin Nagant. It's far rarer than the 12 million plus MN that were made.

There's no way it's going to be less expensive to obtain than the $100 a MN goes for nowadays.

It needs to be converted from rimfire to centerfire.

Tubular magazine means no spitzers.

The .45-70 is much longer than the 10.4x38 cartridge.

There's no way a Vetterli action is going to withstand anything close to the 52000 PSI pressure that a MN is rated for.

That's kind of the point of this exercise. To create a reliable bolt action using for the venerable.45-70 to it's full potential. The MN does that in spades. It can handle a .45-70 handloaded to maximum.

You can also add the .444 Marlin and the .405 Winchester to the possible cartridge list as well. Three matching rifles, one in each cartridge would be really neat to own.

Jim Green's Gun Works - Mosin Nagant Conversion to .45-70 Govt. - YouTube

Yes, the easy way would be to use the .458 Win Mag. But some times the easy way isn't as satisfying. The journey is part of the experience.

As Robert Frost said, taking the road less traveled makes all the difference.

Originally Posted by ironhead7544 View Post
Check out the Swiss Vetterli. It is a big bore bolt action with a tube magazine. You can get it set up for centerfire.

The easy way would be find a 458 Mag and just load it to your specs. Sounds like fun.
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Old 01-01-2013, 07:10 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: California
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My 45-70 is the top one made from a Siamese Mauser.It shoots a 350 Barnes bullet into 3/4 in at 100 yards.Does not feed them from the magazine though.It will feed conventional 45-70 loads easily.
Attached Thumbnails
Build a bolt action .45-70 Rifle-469993_3530676872143_867352469_o.jpg  
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Old 06-02-2013, 04:34 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2013
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I built a .45-70 on a British SMLE #3 (.303 cal) after seeing one advertised. All I had to do was turn and thread a .458 barrel blank and ream the chamber. The bolt face is wide enough & original extractor works fine. Shoots great but feeding from the magazine is the problem I haven't worked out yet. Has anyone else tried this conversion & have you figured out the feeding solution. I think it was Gibbs Rifle Co offered carbines on this action, if one of their magazines could be located it might solve our problem.

Last edited by olbear; 06-02-2013 at 04:45 AM. Reason: additional info
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Old 06-02-2013, 06:47 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 1,822

Ya gotta love the way Jim Green drops his .45-70 Mosin conversion down from his shoulder every time he has to work the bolt...............

Feed a starving man a fish & he will eat for a day - Teach the man how to fish & he will never starve again.
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