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Hi, I’m going to reload some 45-70 for my sharps and my marlin 45-70 using IMR 3031. My question revolves around using a filler of some sort, my background in reloading stems over 30 years but this is my second attempt at loading the 45-70. First was with black powder which of course filled the case. But now that I have the marlin I want a load that I can shoot in both. I’ve heard the marlin doesn’t like BP
So I like any thoughts and suggestions on loads and using fillers and what filler to use.
thanks
I'm replying without having first read through the other replies. Back in the mid-'80s, I bought my first Marlin 1895 (of five), the SS model with Microgroove rifling. Using the then-current edition of the Speer reloading manual, I worked up to 53 gr. of IMR-3031 shown as maximum for lever-actions for the Speer 400 gr. JFP, with Remington and Winchester brass and CCI-200 primers. The same load worked fine with bullets I cast with Lyman no. 2 alloy from the RCBS 45-405-GC mould. Both loads filled the cases to a level requiring slight compression of the powder when seating the bullet----with no room or need for a filler. Contrary to whatever belief that cast bullets do not work with Microgroove rifling, casting with a hard alloy, using a gas check, and sizing to .458" or .459" (for rifling with '.457" groove diameter) will result in little to no leading of the bore even with heavy safe loads. Back then, I used the Lyman Ideal bullet lube, but later switched to moly. Either load does the job on wild hogs in the Everglades.
 

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Discussion Starter · #62 ·
Ok I’m going to go with a 405 grain cast bullet and 38 grains of 3031. My question is to crimp or not ?
 

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I use 39 gr. of H4895 with a 405 gr. paper patched bullet in my Trapdoor with a light crimp (don't want to cut the paper). According to Quickload this fills the case 77% and give me a pressure of 14235 psi and a chronoed velocity in the mid 1,300s. I have topped off some cases with 1gr. of polyester fiberfill and didn't find a whole lot of difference between filled and not filled - with a 77% filled case I don't think filling is necessary.
 

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My question is to crimp or not ?
Can't say I've loaded such a thing, but would answer like this.
With lighter things and auto loaders, where bullet set back can be an issue. With properly sized cases, I've never needed to crimp to keep things in place. That being said, because I'm not big on annealing; I crimp most things for consistent start pressures.
I think if it makes you happy, do it; or if you see setback, do it.

Cheers
 

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Ok I’m going to go with a 405 grain cast bullet and 38 grains of 3031. My question is to crimp or not ?
A heavy crimp in either heavy load I've described is necessary to avoid the bullet being pushed back in the case by the Marlin 1895's heavy recoil, The Speer 400 gr. JFP has two crimping grooves, and crimping in the forward groove is necessary to keep cartridge OAL short enough to feed through the Marlin's action. Crimping the Speer bullet in the rear groove is done for loading for Ruger 45-70 single-shots and allowing for heavier powder charges for stronger loads safe in the Ruger, but not in the Marlin. BTW, I've read that all three of RCBS's cast bullet moulds, for 350, 405, and 500 gr. slugs were designed to cycle through the Marlin 1895 and Winchester 1886 lever-actions. I've loaded bullets from the RCBS 45-500-GC mould, crimping in the groove, but using Remington brass, because those cases are uncrimped, unlike the Winchester cases, which have a crease crimp to fit 405 gr. bullets.
Get copy of the current edition of the Lyman Cast Bullet Handbook. You'll find it a great help for loads.
 

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Hi I would suggest that 3031 should not be used in trapdoor rifle. use Hodgson Varget start at 40 grains for 1400 FPS at 15600 CUP If your trapdoor is an original it should not be fired.
The case will hold 55 grains with the 400 grain bullet velocity 1850 FPS at about 28,00 CUP . Using Varget gives very realistic velocities at about 10,000 Cup units of pressure less than the top load of 2000 FPS using H4198.
The Varget maximium loadings are teeth rattling but easy on the rifle. I find that Alliant Unique and alliant 2400 very useful but one must double check powder levels in cases as it is possible to double charge or even tripple charge with deadly results. Cheers Vaughn G
 

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Discussion Starter · #67 ·
Hi Vaughn, while I have a model 1873 trapdoor in good shape with a good bore that I have shot with black powder loads that is not my intention with these loads. They will be shot in my Shiloh sharps and my 1895 Marlin. As for 3031 it’s my understanding it’s been loaded in the 45-70 for decades. And if the climate for powder availability wasn’t what it is right now I’d run out and pick up a couple of different powders to see what worked best..... but times are different now, I have 3031 so that’s what I want to use. Why do you suggest I don’t use the 3031??
 

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Discussion Starter · #68 ·
Has anyone had experience with fiber wads in a 45-70? What are the chances of ringing the barrel/chamber??
 

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If you’re shooting black powder you usually use a wad on top of the powder WITH NO AIRSPACE between the wad and the base of the bullet. If you are using smokeless you use no wad. The wad acts as a projectile with an airspace and can ring your barrel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #70 ·
Thanks nsb, I know BP is loaded to capacity but I was not aware they needed a card. Do you know if that’s how they were loaded back in the day? In the late 1800’s?? My goal here is to actually build a load for my marlin 1895 that will also shoot ok in my sharps if I want to shoot smokeless, but I will soon get my molds out and most likely make some 500 grain slugs that I will load with BP for the sharps solely
 

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There are several good books out concerning loading and shooting black powder in cartridge rifles. Follow this link to a couple
 
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