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  1. #1
    Tinhorn
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    Loading 45/70 Blanks

    I'm looking for some info on loading blanks for my 45/70 GS. I need to start working my German Shorthaired Pointer on birds. When the birds are launched I need to fire a shot. Some people purchase a blank pistol for this purpose but I would rather carry my Marlin. I had thought about using .410 bird shot, but after reading the recent thread on .410 shells in a 45/70 I figured I had better not...

    I don't want to get into crimped brass as the brass can not be reused once crimped and I plan on shooting lots of blanks. I recall reading about loading with powder, then a filler (cotton or cardboard) and topping with wax (sheet). Is this practical and safe in a Marlin 1895 GS? I will be loading one at a time in the chamber.

    Chris
    good dog, a 1895GS and a Jeep.... what else do I need... Beer, I will need Beer... And a chain saw... and....

  2. #2
    Marlin Marksman
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    .

    I would just use a primed case if you are just starting your dog. If you start out to loud you might make your dog gun shy. As for adding powder, someone else will have to help you on this one. I never have tried loading just blanks.
    1895GS.45-70 Govt.
    336C .35 remington

  3. #3
    Gun Wizard
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    Loading 45/70 Blanks

    If you want to make blanks you'll need to use a quick burning, easily ignited powder like Bullseye, Red Dot, or maybe even something as slow as Unique. Without a bullet or other payload to resist the expansion of the gases, a slower powder may not actually burn well enough to give you the pop you want. You will still need to provide some kind of resistance in order to make smokeless powder burn. A 410 fiber wad should suffice. You might improvise a wad from tissue but consistency might be difficult to control. Even with no bullet, you'd want to be careful not to create an overpressure situation so a light charge would be in order to start. Of course, a light charge may not shoot the wad clear of the barrel so you'd want to watch that also to make sure that you never fire another wad into one already in the tube. A few drops of wax or something over and around the wad to hold it would likely be necessary to hold everything in place. I guess the bottom line is that you will be experimenting in uncharted territory in creating a smokeless blank load. OF course you could use black powder which should work with less issues or danger - except for the mess.

    410 shells do shoot - the 2 1/2" ones- in a 45-70. There really is no danger in using them as they have plenty of room to slide through the barrel so pressure is never a problem - nor would it be even if it reached full 410 specs if it could.

    Perhaps the best method though, would be to use an adapter that can shoot a smaller cartridge of some type. There are several kinds. Here is a link to one:

    http://www3.telus.net/gamegetter/operate1.html
    45-70, 350 NorthFork 45-70, 350 Speer 30 WCF, 170 Core-Lokt

  4. #4
    Tinhorn
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    Loading 45/70 Blanks

    jbadams66 - I have shot over the dog (last fall). That starting off with primers is a good point, which I will do this year. The last thing I want to do is make him Gun Shy.

    Golsovia - If .410 can be shot out of a 45/70 that would be the easiest solution. How much below .410 actually specs do you expect it would be? Might be handy if I launch the odd kill pigeon.

    I might order an adaptor as well. The cheapest solution if I end up shooting lots of blanks.

    Thanks guys!
    good dog, a 1895GS and a Jeep.... what else do I need... Beer, I will need Beer... And a chain saw... and....

  5. #5
    Gun Wizard
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    Loading 45/70 Blanks

    Quote Originally Posted by Khonhed
    Golsovia - If .410 can be shot out of a 45/70 that would be the easiest solution. How much below .410 actually specs do you expect it would be? Might be handy if I launch the odd kill pigeon.
    I can't even venture a guess as my 410 use was just experimental, in a Micro-Groove model, and over twenty years ago. I was attempting to find a useful "tundra grouse" (ptarmigan) load. The over sized chamber in the 45-70 results in significant pressure loss so performance was poor as I recall. I experimented with shot loads using card wads directly in the metal 45-70 case with better results in terms of power behind the shot. I would use neither to try to wing a pigeon though. The rifling opens a shot load rather quickly. I would imagine the modern Ballard rifling would be even worse than the old MG rifling. It was, however, okay for stationary targets quite close. (That as with my home made shot loads.)
    45-70, 350 NorthFork 45-70, 350 Speer 30 WCF, 170 Core-Lokt

  6. #6
    Contributing Member
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    Loading 45/70 Blanks

    Khonhed,

    I have shot a number of .45-70 smokeless blanks. I used W231 powder because I have more of that on hand. Bullseye, Red Dot, Unique will also work well.

    I don't know how much noise you want to make, but I would suggest loading 10 grs in a case and fold a 1" square piece of toilet paper twice into a 1/2" square and push it down on the powder with the eraser end of a pencil.

    For more noise, go increase 5 grs. at a time. I have used up to 45 grs. of 231 in a .45-70 blank and it was LOUD :shock:

    Disclaimer: (USE A PIECE OF TOILET TISSUE AS DESCRIBED .......NO BULLET!)

    Have fun.

    w30wcf
    aka w44wcf (black powder)
    aka Jack Christian SASS 11993 "I can do all things through Christ who strenghtens me." Philippians 4:13
    aka John Kort
    NRA Life Member
    .22 WCF, .30WCF, .44WCF cartridge historian
    TEAM 39A member #108
    TEAM 1894 member #125
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    TEAM 45-70 member #563


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