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Winchester 45-90
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Went by a Cabelas to pickup a handgun I acquired at a Cabelas store in a different state.
They had a nice looking case colored what looked like an Winchester 86 or 71 action on the rack with a nice piece of wood.
A Winchster 45-90 with an octagon barrel.
That thing was HEAVY but a real nice looking rifle, Sort of pricey at $1,700.00.
Would like nice on a wall in a shadow box.
Curious how available shells are for that rifle.
I have heard a lot of folks on this forun note it approached 458 WM if you hand load it.
Probably need that weight ...

EZ
 
Posts: 2936 | Location: Texas | Registered: 06 January 2009Reply With Quote
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My Miroku/Winchester 1886 TD .45-90 WCF (.458 2.4) is rather plain and basic but solid , accurate, experienced in Texas, New Mexico, and Africa.
The 2.4 inch case actually holds 96% of the powder volume of the .458 Win Mag and with modern bullets and powders gets 450 grain bullets up to 2150 fps and higher.
Properly mounted with the lower tip of the metal butt plate in the arm pit, the recoil just raises the barrel up and not back - no pain.

I found the main source of loaded .45-90 ammo to be Ultramax 300 grain loads for Cowboy Action shooting. There may be some firms loading heavier hunting ammo, but not to my knowledge.

Or you can do what I did years ago when my rifle was new, shoot Commercial 45-70 ammo for hunting deer, hogs and medium game. Then as needed, load your own 45-90 ammo as desired. There are also firms that will load ammo of any caliber to customer specifications. For our African bullet testing Safari, we loaded some of the ammo and had some loaded by Grizzly Cartridge.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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What is the rifling twist relative to the 45-70?


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Posts: 6149 | Location: Richmond, Virginia | Registered: 17 September 2000Reply With Quote
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The same in the Modern Miroku made rifles.
Mine shoots .45-70 and 90 very accurately.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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Thanks! I've got a 1886 take down in 45=-70. I've found shooting 300 gas checked with 3031 for plinking and deer. The most accurate load id a Lyman 445 grain gas checked with a full case of IMR 4064 All cast bullets are sized .4585 hard alloy. My 1886 is an import also.


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Posts: 6149 | Location: Richmond, Virginia | Registered: 17 September 2000Reply With Quote
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I have two of the Miroku guns in 45-90,easy to load for,can take heavy loads,mine are a 26" octagon & a 20"round barrel,love em both.


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Posts: 2211 | Location: MI | Registered: 20 March 2007Reply With Quote
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Bill,
I think there is a place for each of your 1886 rifles.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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I have recently read some posts about two holes making better blood trails and such --there were about rifle calibers less than .458.
My 26 inch 1886 shooting 300 grain Winchester Nosler PP ammo at 1850 fps either leaves no need for a blood trail ( DRT) or the blood is so voluminous as to be very obvious and the tail very obvious and short. That was for deer and pronghorn. Does a good job on Afrikan leopard too.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by crshelton:
I have recently read some posts about two holes making better blood trails and such --there were about rifle calibers less than .458.
My 26 inch 1886 shooting 300 grain Winchester Nosler PP ammo at 1850 fps either leaves no need for a blood trail ( DRT) or the blood is so voluminous as to be very obvious and the tail very obvious and short. That was for deer and pronghorn. Does a good job on Afrikan leopard too.

Elmer Keith was a proponent of the two hole theory. You get blood trails on both sides of the path, plus you got to eat right up to the bullet holes


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Posts: 6149 | Location: Richmond, Virginia | Registered: 17 September 2000Reply With Quote
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quote:
You get blood trails on both sides of the path, plus you got to eat right up to the bullet holes

Well, that just depends.
Shot a management buck with the same rifle and ammo from a distance of 110 yards and the buck managed to go 50+ yards while all the remaining blood in the body drained out. When my guide took the deer to the cleaning shed, a skinner remarked on the size of the entrance wound of two ribs, thinking it was the exit hole. My guide turned the hanging body and showed that the exit wound took out 4 ribs, leaving a rather large hole in the offside chest. Nothing much left in the chest cavity and not much to eat right up to!


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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Ive owned a number of them over the years, but they got to high priced for me to hang on to them..I don't know if it was luck, but they all shot great and I believe they are accurate by design or whatever, it just seemed more than luck, but same for the 222 Rem..

The 45-90 rifle was and is my favorite of all the winchesters and the last one I sold was minty and I sold it for $4500 and at $1700 if its decent and shootable is a very good deal IMO..


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Posts: 39402 | Location: Twin Falls, Idaho | Registered: 04 June 2000Reply With Quote
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Ray,

This was new rifle. Probably made by Miroku.

EZ
quote:
Originally posted by Atkinson:
Ive owned a number of them over the years, but they got to high priced for me to hang on to them..I don't know if it was luck, but they all shot great and I believe they are accurate by design or whatever, it just seemed more than luck, but same for the 222 Rem..

The 45-90 rifle was and is my favorite of all the winchesters and the last one I sold was minty and I sold it for $4500 and at $1700 if its decent and shootable is a very good deal IMO..
 
Posts: 2936 | Location: Texas | Registered: 06 January 2009Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by crshelton:
Bill,
I think there is a place for each of your 1886 rifles.


cr,
I have shot plenty of pigs with the 26 incher,one would think it is heavy & cumbersome but it carries surprisingly well,I have not bloodied the 20" gun yet,with the short barrel it comes up sweet,perfect brush gun.


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Posts: 2211 | Location: MI | Registered: 20 March 2007Reply With Quote
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Am totally ignorant about the 45-90. I read the newer rifles built by M are labeled black powder only. Do these rifles handle smokeless loads?


My biggest fear is when I die my wife will sell my guns for what I told her they cost.
 
Posts: 6374 | Location: Cumberland Plateau, Tennessee | Registered: 22 February 2005Reply With Quote
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Snowwolf
The first 1886 rifle shown is one of 500 that Miroku made on special order and does have the black powder warning because of legal concerns.
Ignore it.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by crshelton:
quote:
You get blood trails on both sides of the path, plus you got to eat right up to the bullet holes

Well, that just depends.
Shot a management buck with the same rifle and ammo from a distance of 110 yards and the buck managed to go 50+ yards while all the remaining blood in the body drained out. When my guide took the deer to the cleaning shed, a skinner remarked on the size of the entrance wound of two ribs, thinking it was the exit hole. My guide turned the hanging body and showed that the exit wound took out 4 ribs, leaving a rather large hole in the offside chest. Nothing much left in the chest cavity and not much to eat right up to!
No bbq ribs on that one. Good you shot the chest and not the shoulder.
 
Posts: 5478 | Location: Ohio | Registered: 02 April 2003Reply With Quote
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I Just found some 45-90 express load Data over on Load Data.com that looks like fun for some weekend plinking. Think I wll translate the 3031 data to N133 to reduce pressure a bit and try some.
When comparing loads across multiple sources,
It appears the entry level .458 WM loads are equal to the upper .45-90 loads. SmilerSmilerSmiler


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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Just for clarification, These modern Winchester/Miruku rifles, marked 45-90; are NOT the original 45-90 WCF.
They are just using the old designation, for what is, in reality, a longer 45-70, or 45 2.4 inch Sharps.
Why? Rifling twist and bullet weight. Original 45-90 was an Express cartridge with a 300 grain bullet and a 36 inch twist. Never was loaded with a heavy bullet.
So, the new ones, are better, but are not 45-90s. I guess you can could call them a 45-90 with a fast twist.
Since no one knows the history and origin, it doesn't matter....
 
Posts: 14972 | Location: USA | Registered: 02 August 2009Reply With Quote
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Yes, history sometimes gets lost with the passing of time and the telling of tales.

I call it my 1886 .45-90 because that is what is stamped on the barrel. Also often add .458 2.4 to the description. Gets a bit wordy though.

Since my 1886 .458 2.4 performed so well in Africa on ele and Cape Buff with custom ammo of 450 grain NF at 2150 fps, I have been looking around a bit for pressure tested Express Loads similar to those referenced above on Loaddata.com .
Pretty slim pickings so far.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by dpcd:
Just for clarification, These modern Winchester/Miruku rifles, marked 45-90; are NOT the original 45-90 WCF.
They are just using the old designation, for what is, in reality, a longer 45-70, or 45 2.4 inch Sharps.
Why? Rifling twist and bullet weight. Original 45-90 was an Express cartridge with a 300 grain bullet and a 36 inch twist. Never was loaded with a heavy bullet.
So, the new ones, are better, but are not 45-90s. I guess you can could call them a 45-90 with a fast twist.
Since no one knows the history and origin, it doesn't matter....


You sir are correct,I found all this out when I got my first 45-90 tu2


DRSS
 
Posts: 2211 | Location: MI | Registered: 20 March 2007Reply With Quote
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FYI - BEEN LOOKING FOR MORE INFO ON .45-90 LOADS, ESPEIALLY WITH PRESSURE DATA AND HAVE FOUND A COUPLE OF "NEW TO ME" WEB SITES. WHEN I HAVE CHECKED ALL OUT, WILL MAKE A SEPARATE POST .


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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I checked in my Buffalo Arms catalog 25th addition and they have a bunch of different new lever guns in 45-70 and 45-90 and larger for about $1550 average..I is a deluxe Pedersole rifle in 45-70 not the 4590, but that would convert easy..
The eye catcher for me was their mod 71 DEluxe Winchester knock off in 45-70 for $1650..They are and amazing company and good guys to deal with..Theh catalog itself is awesome reading..


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Posts: 39402 | Location: Twin Falls, Idaho | Registered: 04 June 2000Reply With Quote
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I like the .45 2.4" concept but the .45-90 cases are twice the .45-70 price.

I bought a Miroku Winchester .45-70 s/h for $1350 ($US900) and got a buddy to extend the throat to near .45-90 length. With plenty of bullet grip
left, you don't need the extra case length, in the '86 at least.
 
Posts: 4330 | Location: Melbourne, Australia | Registered: 31 March 2009Reply With Quote
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I think the ‘BP only’ warning is because no SAAMI spec exist for the 45/90 and essentially was a means for Winchester to cover themselves legally. Strength wise the action is no different to Miroku 1886 rifles in 45/70.

For those chasing some published higher potency loads for the 45/90, there is some recent load data using a Miroku 1886 in 45/90 published on Real Guns (paid subscription).

Sooner or later a gun scribe will rise to the challenge of properly wringing out the 45/90 and provide pressure tested data using a wide range of pills.
 
Posts: 437 | Location: Melbourne, Australia | Registered: 19 June 2006Reply With Quote
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So far, some interesting load data, but no pressure data provided. One of the sites does have data new to me in a load table - that is the Net Grains H2O Capacity. With no further explanation, it appears to show the capacity left for powder after the bullet is inserted into the cartridge case. Interesting and potentially helpful.
Here is that load table on real guns.com::
https://www.realguns.com/articles/4590data.htm

Another new-to-me site with no pressure data is this:https://loaddata.com/Cartridge/45-90-Express/782

That is all for tonight.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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I don't own a .45-90 or wish to lash out 50 of our South-Pacific pesos to get the gear. However, I would be interested to know what it says about loading the 350-grain Hornady and its COL, in reference to my extended-throat .45-70. Smiler
 
Posts: 4330 | Location: Melbourne, Australia | Registered: 31 March 2009Reply With Quote
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All you need is math. .3 inch longer; as long as you have enough case left to hold the bullet, they will have the same internal capacity. (You will have about .125 inch seating depth).
Other notes:
1. Load data programs use the whole case capacity of water, and they automatically calculate the actual powder space, from the seating depth.
2. The Miroku 86 is used by custom builders for the 500 S&W, which operates at 50K psi.
 
Posts: 14972 | Location: USA | Registered: 02 August 2009Reply With Quote
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Thanks DPCD,
I just finished loading a 45-90 batch of 350 grain NF SS that should Chrony 2200-2400 fps when I get out to shoot them. Nice looking rounds. Interesting that the starter 350 grain bullet load of a .458 Win Mag was the top load for my .45-90 - a coincidence ?
I already loaded a similar 45-70 batch that should run a couple hundred fps slower.

Some fun 1886 shooting coming up.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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Here you go:


45-90 loaded with NF 350 SS over 60 grains of N133 powder and Fed magnum primer. Have others with 65, 67, and 69 grains of N133 to test. But I will fire this load first as the bore riding NF bullet usually bumps up the loading mnaual velocity a bit.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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I like it. And with your 45-70, same bullet seated out .3 inch, same thing. Just no crimp groove. Make sure the bullets don't seat deeper...then it's a single shot. Maybe two.
 
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Thanks guys. I got that table and have put it in my manual. The bullets are not ones I use or have even seen here but they make an interesting reference.
 
Posts: 4330 | Location: Melbourne, Australia | Registered: 31 March 2009Reply With Quote
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Pressure data is nice and interesting but if one is an accomplished reloader and wildcatter perthaps, it really isn't needed, We used to have to fly by the seat of out pants with all wildcats, the 45-90 proved easy enough to concoct max loads..I love the 86s and owned a number of them back in the day when they were cheap at $100 to 150.


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Posts: 39402 | Location: Twin Falls, Idaho | Registered: 04 June 2000Reply With Quote
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quote:
Originally posted by crshelton:
Here you go:


45-90 loaded with NF 350 SS over 60 grains of N133 powder and Fed magnum primer. Have others with 65, 67, and 69 grains of N133 to test. But I will fire this load first as the bore riding NF bullet usually bumps up the loading mnaual velocity a bit.



cr,
I am very interested in a range report,I have not tried any loads with N133 yet.


DRSS
 
Posts: 2211 | Location: MI | Registered: 20 March 2007Reply With Quote
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Bill,
So am I.
This my first at loading NF 350 SS bullets and the results should be interesting.
I have loaded NF 300 SS,FPS, and CPS for my .405 WCF with great success on big game and am hoping for similar results with these.458 loads.
When the darn wind speed drops below 20 mph, I plan to shoot .45-70 and 45-90 350 loads for velocity checks.
Looking for 2200 fps with the 70 and for 2400 fps for the 90, but with bore riding bullets, who knows? Roll Eyes


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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As I recall my preferred bullet for elk with my 45-90 was a 350 gr. Hornaday? I think was designed for the 458 Win??? but it was death and destruction to a bull elk, and blood trails were rivers..something I never felt with the 45-70 for whatever reason and found it disapointing on elk..Would have loved to try the 45-110 or 120 that were in the Sharps I suppose..

All that said with todays powders I not sure the 45-70 has almost caught up with the 45-90 based on the old reloads in my book as to today loads with RL-17, 19, N-133 and a few others, especially with the Marlin mod 95s. I have been working up max loads with that combo and its bordering on amazement, but I backed off for lack of pressure equipment, but was getting very close to a 458 factory round going 1/2 grain at a time...Decided that extra velocity served very little purpose in the game field..Then you have the ruger #!, wow, but it comes in a .458 so no need..entertaining week at least..

I really like those candy coated cast Acme bullets and they are cheap, shoot good, and I bet they would work on moose or whatever..


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Posts: 39402 | Location: Twin Falls, Idaho | Registered: 04 June 2000Reply With Quote
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I'm still working on getting the velocity up with the lengthened throat and those Hornady 350s.

Thinking of the long Sharps cartridges: to what extent did they ever get loaded to high velocities in the old days? Also, are any of the old Sharps rifles up to anything like the pressures a Ruger No.1 can take?
 
Posts: 4330 | Location: Melbourne, Australia | Registered: 31 March 2009Reply With Quote
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quote:
I am very interested in a range report,I have not tried any loads with N133 yet.


Bill, a couple of my hand loading mentors + plus my own pressure testing on my .405 WCF all show that at equal velocities, N133 loads generate 10,000 to 12,000 PSI less pressure. The same sources plus my own research show that some powders generate higher velocities than N133 and these include some of the obvious powders such as R7 and 2230. I can not confirm the latter because my loading and testing involves mostly lever or break action ( DR) action rifles and not high pressure bolt action rifles. My two bolt rifles use long proven commercial ammo of one brand and one bullet weight for consistency. Thus far, N133 has provided all the velocity that I need for hunting + that comforting buffer against too much pressure. My Pressure Trace II plots of N133 loads show NO spikes, whereas the other powders I have used all DO have a pressure spike. That spike can be worrisome when loading up into unknown velocities and pressures. For instance, none of the 45-90 load data that I have found has pressure data; velocities, but no pressures.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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cr,
I think I will play with N133 on Quickload & see what I get.


DRSS
 
Posts: 2211 | Location: MI | Registered: 20 March 2007Reply With Quote
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Bill73,
Great! I will be interested to see how that goes.


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Posts: 2206 | Location: Republic of Texas | Registered: 25 May 2009Reply With Quote
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Bill,
My grandson arrived back in the Dallas area yesterday and he said it is really hot here. Well, compared to Ann Arbor, I reckon he is right.

But the weather will change soon as it usually does.


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