Your post/quote pretty much confirms my thoughts. As currently thrown about, "hard cast" means little to nothing unless accompanied by BNH Hardness figures. Even then it is still a wild call as to my knowledge to date no person or better yet, group of persons/originations has made the effort to establish a recognized scale as to what constitutes a soft or hard cast etc..
I don't know if my bullet shown in the last post would be hard cast or not. I have always considered this bullet, cast of 50/50 - wheel weights/lead and water quenched as they fall from the hot mold, to be softer then what I'd consider to be a "hard cast".
As said, I don't know.
I do know however that it has proven HIGHLY Effective on deer and elk. I'd not hesitate to pit against any four legged critter that walks North America!
Crusty Deary Ol'Coot
The thing that I see in your bullet is that it did not tumble nor deform. It went straight thru, so it is hard enough. Now I have to find out if that LBT style bullet nose had something to do with it's straight line performance. 50/50 ww/lead should be fairly soft around 8.5 if air cooled. The cold quenching may be hardening your bullets I will let you know what I find out.
Here is a picture of 525 gr. Beartooth Piledriver that went thru both shoulder blades of a hippo, another stuck in the off-side shoulder
525 Beartooth Pile Driver recovered from Hippo.jpg
You may find this article very interesting 45/70 Levergun in Africa! - The Government goes to Africa. There are about thirteen different articles in this, so it's not something you'll read in a day.
Far as porting goes.....Absolutely NOT! I hate ported rifles!
Respect for your quarry demands that your firearm is one that ensures a humane kill. When that quarry is a bear then respect for your own survival demands that your firearm is not going to just annoy the bear enough to make it hate you.
Speaking at Kanal D TV's Arena program, Turkey's Prime Minister Erdogan commented on the term "Moderate Islam", often used in the West to describe AKP and said, "These descriptions are very ugly, it is offensive and an insult to our religion. There is no moderate or immoderate Islam. Islam is Islam and that’s it."
Source: Milliyet, Turkey, August 21, 2007
oh-behi that was a fine explanation of hard cast term bullets. That term has been thrown around this forum with quite some time and most everyone always wondered where that term fell into their own casting. I like Crusty cast my own bullets but I only use probably 25% lead with the wheel weights. The 405gr bullet I recovered really did not mushroom either. It also was a quartering shot and hitting a rib on the way in and traveling the length of the body and then lodging against the leg bone in the rear on the far side. It was more shaved at an angle on the tip. I guess I'm going to have to take some pictures of it alongside one of the new bullets not loaded to help the explanation as Crusty has done. I always knew my bullets had to be somewhat "hard cast" but never knew where they would fall into that guideline. I used to cast thousands of semi wadcutter for 38spl and 40 cal handguns but always used just straight wheel weights and they provided very little leading and were extremely accurate but only loaded slowly to develop expertise with the use of a handgun. Nicely done, and great article. Thanks again for posting. This is how we all here learn something almost every day.
Team 45-70 #1569
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I have a hard time trying to find a reason for shooting light for caliber bullets from a 45/70. In fact an extremely hard time!!!!!!!!!!
When I first started down the road with the 45/70, I did so for one reason. Being an old feller, I wanted to do something within reasonable reach that I had NOT done for hunting and hand loading.
I had formed cases and used wildcats, I had hunted game animals with center fires from the .243 through the 300s also using a number of cartridges between, I had hand loaded for years and I had cast my hand gun bullets for many years.
I had not, however, hunted game using a rifle and my own cast bullets, so buying and using and casting for a 45/70 just seemed like a no brainer.
Now, the problem that surfaced early on was the fact that I addressed the hand loading for the 45/70 in the same manner as I had hand loaded for typical center fire and high velocity cartridges for many years. WRONG! the 45/70 is a whole different cat!
For hunting that first year, I fell into the trap of using a lighter bullet and since I was using a RUGER #1 in the 45/70 I could safely load in my accustomed manner, picking powders then progressing to ever larger powder charges and higher velocities.
I tested the chosen 355gr LBT (Lead Bullet Technology) Wide Flat Nose bullet to velocities a bit over 2500fps and hunted with it the first year at 2300fps.
Well it took only one deer to show me the error of my ways. The WFN bullets are HIGHLY effective and I never ever want to see a wound channel that size again. The bone an tissue was not minced as would have been the case with a jacketed expanding bullet, it was simply GONE!!!!! The oft repeated comment about eating right up to the hole when using cast bullets may be quite true, but never in this world had I expected to see a hole that big and my first thought was, "just what in the world have I turned loose on the game population."
I had fallen into the trap of attempting to make the 45/70 into what it was never meant to be and what it NEVER will be. If my goal is to extend the range with higher velocity, well there are cartridges just Soooooooooo much better suited for that goal, cartridges such as the .444 or better still a .375 in which a 300gr cast bullet might very well be awesome.
If the goal is NOT to extend the range by using higher velocity, then simply what is the point of using light for caliber bullets?
The Hornady FTX gummy nose/burger on the hoof bullet has been mentioned and while this bullet has proven to be VERY accurate in many rifles, it is also well proven to be devastating and very short on penetration should heavy bone or muscle be impacted. And yes I have seen such results. Pick your shots and hunting being what hunting is that is not always successfully possible or be prepared for the good possibility of undesirable results.
Using a Leupold CDS (Custom Dial System) 2X7 scope on my 45/70 with my chosen 465gr WFN at 1650fps, my custom dial goes to 275yds which is a far piece. If that is not satisfactory for my hunting situations, baring in mind that using the 45/70 or any similar cartridge requires a change of mind set from the use of the typical high velocity rounds many of us grew up with, then I should be looking at a different cartridge for my conditions/hunting/mind set.
One of the problems with the light for caliber bullets is their loss of energy and velocity no matter how fast you may start them.
Going into the use of the grand old (1873) 45/70 with a proper mind set and the use of a well cast WFN bullet of 400+ grains can prove to be ever so satisfying an endeavor, at least once I got out of the mind set developed with and still useful for the high velocity cartridges with "J" bullets of good integrity, my 45/70 journey has been ever so enjoyable and the results nothing short of awesome on deer and elk.
oh-behi, Thanks for the links!!!!!!!!!!
Crusty Deary Ol'Coot
Welcome to the forum. Crusty is right on in my opinion. I don't like light for caliber bullets either. I shoot a 405gr JSP & it's extremly accurate. This summer I'm going to try some 500gr cast GC Bullets from a Lee mold my Wife bought me. If you choose a good 400+gr bullet I think you'll be well served & you don't have to run them to the red line either, 1400fps will be plenty effective on game.
Good shooting. Enjoy that rifle.
Probably most of us would like a range report when you can get to it.
"U.S.A. RIDE FOR THE BRAND OR LEAVE!"
Team .45-70 #803
Team .44-40 #19
Instead of porting use that money for more ammo and more practice. I have a Handi-Rifle, a Ruger #1, and a stainless Guide Gun all in 45/70. No porting here.
When talking backup, That sounds like SHTF and I would want more than a 357. As far as hunting, a 357 will take a black bear but I would still want more. But with your 45/70, you probably won't have to worry about backup.
But the point I have repeatedly - here and other places - been trying to make Boarderdoc is, the term "Hard Cast" means little to nothing simply because there is no established hardness scale. The term only means anything at all if it is accompanied by a tested hardness figure by which the buyer can compare between the "claims" of the different casters.
The term or claim of "hard Cast" by itself means NOTHING and we as cast bullet shooters should STOP using the term and in stead caution newer cast bullet shooters to beware of such meaningless claims/terms continually being thrown about.
Seems someone with smarts enough to do so, and a wide enough net to get the word around should make the effort to establish a hardness scale by which we could all adhere.
EXAMPLE ---- Soft, semi soft, semi hard, hard, extra hard and very hard etc., along with tested BNH figures to go along with the "Claims."
I have little knowledge about the hardness of my 465gr cast bullet, cast of 50/50 Wheel Weights/lead and cold water quenched before allowing it to "age" for a minimum of 7 days before use, I just know that the results are awesome.
The Very Crust Deary Ol'Coot
I wonder what straight wheel weights would be like in the .45-70, at say 1400-1500fps? I've used them straight for YEARS in six-guns with great satisfaction.
Am kind of new to casting for rifles though.
"U.S.A. RIDE FOR THE BRAND OR LEAVE!"
Team .45-70 #803
Team .44-40 #19