45-70 Government

Fire Arm






: Marlin 1895

: 22 inches

: 1:20 inches

: 24 X

: 50 yards

: 10

Click for detailed 45-70 Government Tech drawing
Click on figure to access ANSI
technical cartridge drawing
In 1873 the U.S. military adopted for standard issue, the Springfield "Trap Door" single shot rifle, chambered in 45-70. The 45-70 remained the military's official cartridge until replaced by the 30-40 Krag in 1892. Although after that it was nolonger an official cartridge, for some time it remained popular. By the end 1930's most American firearm companies ceased chambering the round. Since then a solid, sustained following has developed. Today (as of this writing, 1998) Marlin chambers the 45-70 in their model 1895, Ruger offers it in their #1. With the advent of "cowboy" shooting, many companies have begun offering High Wall or Rolling Block era reproductions.

Although the 45-70 is a viable short range deer to grizzly bear hunting cartridge, to most today, the 45-70 is a target cartridge. When adopted in 1873, the standard load was the "45/70/500" - a .458 calibre bullet, weighting 500 grains, sitting on 70 grains of Fg black powder, generating 1320 fps at the muzzle. Later the standard load was modified to "45/70/405", generating 1460 fps. As a target round, with a 405 grain bullet, the 45-70 is viable out to 1000 yards.

Great care MUST be exercised with regards to 45-70 loads and the firearm in which they're to be shot. Trapdoor reproductions must be limited to 18000-20000 CUP or less, the Marlin model 1895 will handle the ANSI standard maximum pressure, 28000 CUP. Only the Ruger #1 can be loaded to 35000 CUP. Shooting a maximum Ruger or Marlin load in a Trap Door class firearm, will result in the DESTRUCTION of the firearm and SEVERE DAMAGE to the shooter. Care MUST be exercised in load selection.

© Copyright Gregory J Mushial 1997-2000