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Had a day off work and decided to try out my "2007" new model 1895 45-70 in hopes of getting the new scope sighted in. A few weeks ago I found a decent price on some ammo and bought 120 rounds of HSM "Bear Load" 430gr RNFP gas checked with an advertised velocity of 1781. While is was paying the range fee I noticed some 405gr ammo and decided to buy a box just to give me something different to shoot. The HSM ammo was the least expensive I could find but in hind sight not the best choice for shooting from a bench. The biggest rifle I had shot up until today was a 7mm mag which has never bothered me. The 430gr bear loads were like getting hit in the shoulder with a baseball bat...wow....sheeeesh. On the third round I'm pretty sure I felt the scope brush my eyebrow so I decided I better really put my shoulder behind the rifle and that only made the recoil more noticeable :'( so I reached for the 405gr and there was no comparison they were mild. I would even call them enjoyable and they were quite a bit more accurate as well. The twenty rounds went pretty fast so I went back to the heavier loads for as long as I could stand it. It wasn't a good day to sight in a scope with the wind gusting to around 20 mph but I managed to get a best five shot group about 4" nothing to brag about but I was starting to get a little flinchy.
All in all I am impressed with the rifle but I really need to quit saying that I'm going to get some equipment and start reloading and just do it. Surely I can do better than 4" inches with a little practice and the right ammo.
 

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Congrats on that purchase, there is a section on reloading on the site if you have not done it before. Ask as many questions as you like there are many knowledgeable folks here willing to help.
 

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harry otool You a tough guy...not even a grizzly can take 20 hits from a 45-70 ;D
Don't forget the Lee crimping die when you buy your reloading stuff. Reloading is a adventure that will not ware you down :)
 

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I know your pain. Shot some 535 grain Postells out of a Buffalo Classic I used to have. I crossed that particular load off in my book with the notation "Violent Recoil". First time in my life I said I'll never shoot that again. 5 Rounds put my shoulder out for about three days. I disassembled them when I recovered.

As for hand loading - go for it. Very therapeutic. I avoided it always saying that it cost too much to get started. I shoot my 45 Colt for about 23 cents a round. Way less than commercial, and more accurate. Lee has a great kit, the Challenger Breech Lock with single stage press that uses quick change collets (love them - set the dies and forget them) that has everything but the dies to get you started for right around a $100, give or take. Midway has it on sale right now for $89.99 plus shipping. Lee Dies are inexpensive and they come with everything you need, shell holder, dipping measure, load info etc.

As you get into it, you'll need case length gauges to trim the cases back to factory specs, I picked up a zip trim to speed it up and go easy on the hand cramps. A digital weigh scale is about $50 (I have a Frankford Arsenal one that works fine) and a decent set of electronic calipers about $30. I just got a chronograph for fathers day - another $120, so now I know what my loads are actually doing instead of just burning powder. Which is fun too. You don't have to bankrupt yourself to get started.

But be careful. The biggest thing that will throw you are the bullets. Watch where you buy from and once you find a place that produces consistent weights, stick with them. I've loaded some that went all over the map only to start weighing them out and discover the "405 grain" bullets weighed anywhere from 380 grains up to 419 grains.
 

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If you get to reloading, a 405 grain bullet at 1600 is pretty nice to shoot and will pretty much put anything down on this continent. Nice to know you can load them hotter if need be and if I was walking into the thick stuff after a Bear or something i would carry them just in case they decided to get within conversation range so I can end it quick and by then the adrenaline would take away the recoil factor.
 

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That's a lot of lead goin down range all at once. makes me think of "Kilt the bar that kilt me."
 

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Any bullet around 500 grains at any velocity over about 1400 is gonna hurt, though nit may be bearable for a few rounds through a 14 pound Sharps. I guess most of us have learned that the hard way.
I've settled on a 1600-ish fps velocity for a 350 Grain Ranch Dog or 400 grain RCBS for most shooting
Bearable in a guide gun, and not bad at all in a Sharos or rolling block.
 

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Those big 500+ gr Bullets don't kick that hard. The lighter ones loaded hot seem to have A much sharper kick. JMHO ;D
 

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For recoil add a decelerator pad like on the new SBL, GBL, etc. marlins. However, it's not the recoil that bothers me it is the muzzle jump. Typically, the heavier the bullet the more muzzle jump. I'm planning to standardize on Beartooth Bullets 350 gr piledriver lites for scope work. I'm saving the 425's for iron sights and the 525's for ... whatever requires more than an ounce of lead to bring down I guess.
 

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I've shot most everything made today and yesterday. One of my most accurate rifles is a Mauser 375H&H and it is a puppy compared to my 45/70 with 405 gr bullets going around 1850 fps. Only gun I own that I had to install a recoil pad on.
 

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Sit up as straight as you can on bench. I made a box to put on bench to raise rest. Keeps your eyebrow off 10 o'clock on scope, pulls the butt down off the top of shoulder, lets your torso disperse energy. Gtek
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for all the tips. I'm starting to look seriously at reloading equipment. An acquaintance of mine has a Dillon 550B he swears by and is trying to talk me into getting one but they are a little pricey. And getting set up to easily change calibers is a lot of money. I have also heard that the 550B is kind of a pain to switch primer sizes on.
I really just want a press that can load any round (rifle or pistol) is easy to change and won't break the bank. Production rate is much less important to me at this point though that may change.
Are die's from other brands interchangeable with other makes of presses?
 

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The Dillon 550B will serve you well! I never noticed A problem changing primer feeds? You can not beat Dillons Guarantee or service.
Damn I sound like A salesman. ;D
 

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Gaterskiner said:
The Dillon 550B will serve you well! I never noticed A problem changing primer feeds? You can not beat Dillons Guarantee or service.
Damn I sound like A salesman. ;D
+1, Dillon is great and that is what sales good tools like Dillon. ;D
 

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Looking to upgrade and Dillon is right at the top of the list.
 
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