Smokeless Powders

The .50-70 Government was the U.S. Military rifle cartridge from 1866 to 1873. It was the first centerfire cartridge in general use by the U.S. Military.

It was used in various models and modifications of the single shot Springfield rifle and was also chambered in the Remington Rolling Block single shot rifle, as well as a large variety of sporting arms of yesteryear.

The .50-70 was a very effective cartridge on the American bison and other large game but its limitations as a military cartridge led to the development and adoption of the .45-70 Government in 1873.

Although at one time quite popular as a sporting cartridge, very few rifles chambered for this cartridge remain in use and if not for recent offerings of reloadable boxer primed cartridge cases from sources such as Dixie Gun Works, they would be relegated to the role of wall hanger. There are also currently available replicas of the 1874 Sharps chambered for the .50-70 Government.

The pressure limit set for the .50-70 Government was arrived at by firing 65 grains of FFg black powder and a 550 grain cast bullet. This produced a pressure of 22,500 P.S.I.

This data is intended only for firearms safe for use with smokeless propellants.

.50-70 GOVERNMENT

Gun

C. SHARPS

Max Length

1.750"

Barrel Length

28"

Trim Length

1.730"

Primer

FC 215

OAL Max

2.250"

Case

DIXIE

OAL Min

--

START LOADS

MAXIMUM LOADS

Cartridge

Bullet

Powder

Grains

Vel.

Powder

Grains

Vel.

P.S.I.

Length Comment

425 (L) SP

5744

27.0

1249

5744

30.0

1419

18,200

2.275" * LY515141

1680

27.0

1189

1680

30.0

1351

14,200

2015

36.0

1274

2015

40.0

1448

16,800

2495

45.9

1272

2495

51.0

1445

9,500

Compressed

4350

46.8

1085

4350

52.0

1233

15,700

Compressed

START LOADS

MAXIMUM LOADS

Cartridge

Bullet

Powder

Grains

Vel.

Powder

Grains

Vel.

P.S.I.

Length

Comment

550 (L) FN

5744

22.5

1063

5744

25.0

1208

18,600

2.200"

RCBS

1680

25.2

1139

1680

28.0

1294

16,400

2015

30.6

1101

2015

34.0

1251

18,300

2495

37.8

1210

2495

42.0

1375

17,000

4350

43.2

1041

4350

48.0

1183

18,200

Compressed

BAR 400 SP

2015

49.5

1627

2015

55.0

1849

19,400

2.315"

*

Please note that a firm crimp is necessary for good powder ignition.

* Over Recommended Maximum OAL

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Hunting Mastery Selected Tips

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