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Using BP in 45-70 Yellow Boy

ArbyArby Member Posts: 668
I think the original designation for the 45-70 was 45-70-405 which stood for 45 Cal,70 grs Black Powder,behind a 405 gr bullet...

I have BP pistols but never tried using BP in modern rifles. My grandson wants me to load a few BP rounds for his new 45-70 Yellow Boy...

I know little about loading BP cartridges except to fill the brass with fffg to the base of the bullet and compress slightly using lubed lead weighing just fill the brass up.

I use Fed 210 primers and I will use my RCBS dies for setting and crimping.

I don't believe that BP loads will damage modern rifles...but I guess there is always a possibility.

I would appreciate any pointers and tips...and corrections to what I stated above.

I need to get some fresh BP and .458 lubed 405 gr pills...where can I get these items.

I tried searching the archives but didn't find anything that helps.


  • He DogHe Dog Member Posts: 50,090 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    The 70 grains BP in 45-70-405 suggests they were not simply filled to the base of the bullet, but rather carefully weighed. There are books on BP cartridges.
  • navc130navc130 Member Posts: 1,091 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Black powder MUST be weighed or measured for safe loads. There are measures that are adjustable for black powder by volumn or you can make your own if you have a powder scale. There is a LOT of info out there for 45-70 loads. Be sure you clean the bore with water or a black powder solvent. It is my understanding that it is difficult to get 70 grains of black powder in modern cases. Also, I have read that a 70 grain load was compressed in the old cases.
  • 44caliberkid44caliberkid Member Posts: 925 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    Modern 45-70 cases will not hold 70 grains of BP. I can get 68 in one with a compression die. There is nothing wrong with the way he wants to load these. I load all my BP pistol cartridges that way. Couldn't tell you the weight of the charge.
    He will only get about 64 grains in the way he wants to load them. They may not be the most accurately crafted load, but still ok for general shooting.
    You can order fresh BP from Graf and Sons. Use 2F. You want Bullets with BP specific lube. Just google, 45 caliber bullets with BP lube for sale. You'll get a bunch of guys who make them. Some of them use SPG, which is a good BP lube, but homemade recipes work equally as well. Check out The Darksiders Den on
    My question is, who makes a Yellow Boy in 45-70? I guess he means a Henry?
  • PA ShootistPA Shootist Member Posts: 679 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    The cartridge cases should be washed as soon as practicable after shooting, the black powder's residue can make a mess of the interior of the cases if not cleaned.
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