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Discussion Starter #1
I think I have a 43 Spanish Reformado. There's a R stamp on the barrel. I slugged the bore and it's .443. Is there anything else to look for to confirm that it is a Reformado? Also, if it is, am I toast as far as loading for this?
 

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If it is a Reformado you can use 43 Spanish brass to fire form. You will need to open case neck to hold a .446 lead bullet and load over 60 to 65 gr. of FFG black powder. Fill case with black powder to base of case neck, add around 15 to 18 gr. of Cream of Wheat for filler. Seat bullet compressing the COW filler. Use friction to hold bullet in place, do not crimp. You will have a funnel shaped case mouth which will help center the cartridge in the chamber and then fire-form.

Smokeless powder loads will not have sufficient pressure to expand case when fire forming resulting in squib type loads.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks 25/20. Was looking on the internet and gathering info about these rifles and what the one I have is. Based on the info below I have a Modelo 1878 Argentino. But I believe instead of being 43 spanish that it should be, I think it's been changed to a Reformado. Looking inside the chamber it seems more straight than what would accomodate a bottle neck cartridge.

"It is a Modelo 1879 Argentino Patria built by Remington in Ilion New York. Many of these had "EN" for "Ejercito Nacional" stamped on the octagon knoxform around the chamber area. Many others had no such markings. These were shipped to Argentina as part of a large military contract. These are identifiable by two things: The knoxform, and the rear sight is identical to the Austrian Werndl M1867, except that these are not windage adjustable at all and screw directly onto the barrel."

Mine has no markings other than the R stamp on the left side of barrel.

 

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If it is a Reformado you can use 43 Spanish brass to fire form. You will need to open case neck to hold a .446 lead bullet and load over 60 to 65 gr. of FFG black powder. Fill case with black powder to base of case neck, add around 15 to 18 gr. of Cream of Wheat for filler. Seat bullet compressing the COW filler. Use friction to hold bullet in place, do not crimp. You will have a funnel shaped case mouth which will help center the cartridge in the chamber and then fire-form.

Smokeless powder loads will not have sufficient pressure to expand case when fire forming resulting in squib type loads.
How do you know this? This is amazing. I have been shooting since I was seven. I am 66. I never heard of a Reformado. I am truly impressed.
 

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TriggerFinger: a chamber cast is in order. My hunch is that what you have is a 11.15X58R (.43 Spanish).

I shoot a Remington Rolling Block Model 1879 Argentina infantry rifle
, 11.15X58R (.43 Spanish), a bottle neck round. Rifle made by Remington circa 1879. From what I have read and been told the "R" stamp on barrel knox form on the barrel signifies Remington made rifle. The rear sight and the markings on the knox form are as you described.

I looked in Roy Marcort's book -- "Remington, America's Oldest Gunmaker" (2004, p. 97) for additional information, which was sparse. Marcort claims in 1879 Argentina ordered 20,000 M1879 rifles and 5,000 M1879 carbines chambered 11.15X58R (.43 Spanish). The rifles had German made sword-type bayonets.

I found the .43 Spanish BN round to be enjoyable to shoot and it is very similar to the .44-77 Remington, which made a reputation on the target ranges and with hunters. At one time Lyman and RCBS made a mould for this round. The .43 Mauser mould is not the same, even thought it looks like the .43 Spanish mould.

According to the third edition of "Handloader's Manual of Cartridge Conversions" (2004) and "Cartridges of the World" (revised fifth edition,1985) the 11.5X57R (.43 Reformado) is a straight rimmed case, adopted in 1867. It was replaced by the bottle neck 11.15X58R (.43 Spanish), circa 1871. The Reformado round is 2.25" long, and the 11.15X58R (.43 Spanish) is 2.24".

Buffalo Arms has the .43 Spanish BN brass, but it is not very cheap. These cases are made from Starline brass. https://www.buffaloarms.com/43-spanish-11-15x58r-cases-2-250-long-reformed-cases-43span

According to "Cartridges of the World", the Argentine Reformado military round: 395 gr. bullet, 74 grains of Fg powder, 1280MV, 1438 ME. The 11.15X58R 375 gr. bullet, 74 gr. Fg, 1380 MV, 1590 ME.

Agree with what 25/20 Marlin said about firing for Reformado brass from the 11.15X58 Spanish brass.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks Ray for the great info! I'm sure I'm not the only one who'll benefit from your post. I'll try a chamber cast and see what is what this weekend. First thing is to see how to use Cerrosafe:burnout:
 

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Ok, did a chamber cast and all indications are (as Ray predicted) that it's a 43 Spanish and not Reformado. The cast is definitely of a bottleneck cartridge that closely matches case dimensions of 43 Spanish. Glad of that. So a few days ago I purchased at great grief the Bertram brass. I'm searching for a mold that drops 446 and may have to use one from the 43 Mauser unless someone knows one that would work.
 

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Good to hear that it is 43 Spanish. I would slug the bore to find actual size and order a bullet mold from NOE or Accurate. You could use an under size mold and paper patch bullet to get it up to size.
 

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I had a 43Span Rem RB my dad bought at an estate auction. They had it tagged as a 45/70 and old man was down in the jaws when he found out what it was. As usual he dropped his mistakes off to me to try to break him even. Found that barrel was full of cosmoline and when cleaned out we had a bore like a dime. I bought a Rapine mold and dies to load up some Rem brass. I have to look at my book but I think I loaded it with Unique. I got the load out of Cartridges of the World. Me a Bro played with it awhile and I traded it for a early 1894 Marlin 25/20. That was a good while ago. I just sold the mold and dies on Cast Boolits last year. We were shooting bullets as cast because I didn't have size die it called for. It shot well even at that, I had cast the bullets on soft side. It was a 3 bander rifle. They are a good donar for 45/70 although they are a Black Powder action. If you keep loads to original they are fine. Numerich has a conversion kit called the Buffalo that is a snap to install. The Rem RM smokeless actions have to be ground to get the inline clearance over the block to insert a 45/70 cartridge.
 
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