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jamesicus
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 2:03pm | IP Logged Quote jamesicus

I am in my eighties and am living out unfulfilled dreams in my old age. I have always been fascinated by the romance surrounding Safari and dangerous game rifles. A CZ 550 American Safari Magnum .458 Lott rifle was on sale at Cabelas at a great price ($799) and so I snapped it up. It is a "hoot" to shoot with Hornady 500 grain factory ammunition, but the recoil is formidable indeed! Hence my need for substantially reduced loads which I believe will provide me with comfortable target shooting from a bench.

I intend to use a low limit reduced charge of 38 grains of Accurate 5744 powder (no filler) with 500 grain bullets which produces an estimated 1500-1600 FPS muzzle velocity and mild recoil.

James

Edited by jamesicus on March 14 2010 at 2:20pm


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WiskyT
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 3:03pm | IP Logged Quote WiskyT

Welcome to the forum. I don't shoot that type of big game round so I can't give you any opinions on what works best. Your load should be a similar to a 12 guage slug. Assuming your big game rifle is heavier than a shotgun, that would make the recoil less than a 12 guage slug.

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jamesicus
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 3:29pm | IP Logged Quote jamesicus

Thank you for the welcome and information, WiskyT.
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Paul5388
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 3:30pm | IP Logged Quote Paul5388

Welcome to the forum James!

I suppose you know the level you're contemplating is still in the lever gun range for .45-70s? Now, that isn't bone shaking recoil, but it is still pretty healthy.

I normally try for a little less velocity with quite a bit less powder to tame things down. So, I use Blue Dot as the powder of choice.

Our recoil calculator allows two loads to be compared, which can be an eye opener at times. Using your numbers and comparing a load with 20 gr of powder, and all the same (I used a 9# gun for the calculations and 1500 fps), the recoil dropped by about 16%.

I don't know for sure if 20 gr of Blue Dot will achieve 1500 fps with that 500 gr bullet, but it would certainly be worth a try. I use 20 gr with a 300 gr JHP bullet in .45-70 and get about 1500 fps, but the recoil is very manageable, especially with a recoil pad.

That load shoots like this at 100 yards.



Which is typical of the Blue Dot loads I use.

Since the Lott is a lengthened .458 Win Mag (or is it just a standard .375 H&H blown out?), the data indicates you aren't going to achieve 1500 fps with 38 gr of 5744. It takes 42+ gr to get just a little less than 1600 fps out of a .458 Win Mag with a 500 gr bullet.

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jamesicus
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 3:33pm | IP Logged Quote jamesicus

Thank you for the welcome and detailed information, Paul5388.

Edited by jamesicus on March 14 2010 at 3:43pm
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jamesicus
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 3:33pm | IP Logged Quote jamesicus

It was off to the range - clear skies, warm sunshine (70 deg.), light breezes.

Rifle: CZ 550, American Safari, .458 Lott (/.458 Win. Mag.), Open iron sights, weight: 10lbs.
Ammunition: reloads using Hornady New Dimension dies, RCBS Rock-Chucker press
Brass: Hornady
Powder: Accurate 5744 - 38 grains (no fillers)
Primers: Remington 9 1/2M Magnum rifle
Bullets: Hornady 500 grain DGS - .458 dia.

Full length resized without crimping.

I shot twenty rounds in four five shot groups from the bench at 25 yds. This was mainly a function/performance test although the groups were nice and tight (3 inches high) given the handicap of iron sights and my diminished eyesight. The recoil was quite mild and the shooting experience pleasurable - I could have comfortably shot many more rounds during this range session. I single loaded cartridges directly into the chamber, over-riding two dummy rounds that I kept in the magazine in order to check uncrimped bullet set-back resulting from recoil. After the first five round string I removed and checked the dummy rounds -- they had both set-back in the cases approx 1/8". I think I will crimp future loadings in the bullet cannelure. The powder performed flawlessly -- extraction of fired cases was easy and they were in excellent condition. I fired three factory loaded cartridges offhand before I departed the range -- just to remind myself how brutal the .458 Lott recoil can be!

An aside:

I was already a fervant fan of Western Powders after using their "Blackhorn" powder for my inline muzzleloading (Thompson Center .50 caliber "Bone Collector") -- it revolutionized the sport for me -- no bore fouling (you can shoot numerous rounds without cleaning between shots), easy breech plug extraction, easy cleaning of the bore upon completion of shooting using regular cleaner such as Hoppes #9. After the performance of "Accurate 5744" I am an even greater fan of Western Powders.

James

Edited by jamesicus on March 14 2010 at 3:56pm
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STCM(SW)
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 3:39pm | IP Logged Quote STCM(SW)

Welcome jamesicus! And I also have a big bore, .416 WBY.
Reduced loads I have tried but did fire 3 factory rounds
to see if the factory installed muzzle brake worked.
It did, no more recoil then my 300 RUM or 340 WBY.


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Paul5388
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 3:57pm | IP Logged Quote Paul5388

Since the .458 Lott can also safely shoot .458 Win Mag, it might be worth a try for reduced loads that would be easily identifiable.

I think the readily available 405 gr cast bullet would also make it cheap enough to shoot more frequently.   

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jamesicus
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 4:02pm | IP Logged Quote jamesicus

Paul5388 wrote:
Since the .458 Lott can also safely shoot .458 Win Mag, it might be worth a try for reduced loads that would be easily identifiable.

Yes, Paul, I intend to do that.

Quote:
I think the readily available 405 gr cast bullet would also make it cheap enough to shoot more frequently.   

Thanks for the suggestion which I will pursue.
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jamesicus
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 4:05pm | IP Logged Quote jamesicus

STCM(SW) wrote:
Welcome jamesicus! And I also have a big bore, .416 WBY.
Reduced loads I have tried but did fire 3 factory rounds
to see if the factory installed muzzle brake worked.
It did, no more recoil then my 300 RUM or 340 WBY.

Thank you for the welcome, STCM -- the .416 WBY is definitely a "big bore"!
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Paul5388
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 4:11pm | IP Logged Quote Paul5388

The accuracy potential of cast bullets, or even the cheap Remington 400 gr JSP, is quite good. Here's the 400 gr JSP at 100 yards at a pedestrian MV around 1000-1100 fps.



I used Green Dot for this load, but that was just because I had a lot of it leftover from the 1970s. I don't use any fillers with my flake powder loads.

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doghawg
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Posted: March 14 2010 at 7:51pm | IP Logged Quote doghawg

Welcome jamesicus!

The April edition of "Handloader" magazine has an article on reduced loads using "Trail Boss" powder. If it was me I'd probably go to .458 Win brass and use cast bullets over Unique or Blue Dot. Even at reduced levels the gun would churn up more horsepower than the rifles that wiped out the buffalo herds.......

Randy

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jamesicus
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Posted: March 15 2010 at 9:27am | IP Logged Quote jamesicus

doghawg wrote:
Welcome jamesicus!

The April edition of "Handloader" magazine has an article on reduced loads using "Trail Boss" powder. If it was me I'd probably go to .458 Win brass and use cast bullets over Unique or Blue Dot. Even at reduced levels the gun would churn up more horsepower than the rifles that wiped out the buffalo herds.......

Randy

Thank you for the welcome and information, Randy.

Edited by jamesicus on March 15 2010 at 9:28am
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Pete D.
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Posted: March 17 2010 at 2:55am | IP Logged Quote Pete D.

Trail Boss is the way to go.
Fill the case with TB to the point where the bottom of the
bullet will be when it is seated.
Dump that powder onto a scale and weigh it.
70% of that is your start charge. Best accuracy will be
somewhere between there and 100%.
According to Hodgdon, one cannot put enough Trail Boss into
a given case to exceed SAAMI max pressures.
Have fun.
Pete

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Charshooter
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Posted: March 17 2010 at 7:56pm | IP Logged Quote Charshooter

jamesicus wrote:
I am in my eighties and am living out unfulfilled dreams in my old age. I have always been fascinated by the romance surrounding Safari and dangerous game rifles. A CZ 550 American Safari Magnum .458 Lott rifle was on sale at Cabelas at a great price ($799) and so I snapped it up. It is a "hoot" to shoot with Hornady 500 grain factory ammunition, but the recoil is formidable indeed! Hence my need for substantially reduced loads which I believe will provide me with comfortable target shooting from a bench.

I intend to use a low limit reduced charge of 38 grains of Accurate 5744 powder (no filler) with 500 grain bullets which produces an estimated 1500-1600 FPS muzzle velocity and mild recoil.

James


I think that is quite something shooting that big caliber at your age. I had a 458 Winchester for a few years and have at least a full box of the Hornady 500 grain and maybe some of the 350 grain. If you find yourself enjoying the big gum, I can put them on the sale board, but I really do not want to bother if someone is not interested.

Good luck with the light load

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jamesicus
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Posted: March 17 2010 at 8:55pm | IP Logged Quote jamesicus

Pete D. wrote:
Trail Boss is the way to go.
Fill the case with TB to the point where the bottom of the
bullet will be when it is seated.
Dump that powder onto a scale and weigh it.
70% of that is your start charge. Best accuracy will be
somewhere between there and 100%.
According to Hodgdon, one cannot put enough Trail Boss into
a given case to exceed SAAMI max pressures.
Have fun.
Pete

Thank you, Pete -- I bought a container of Trail Boss today and handloaded twenty rounds of .458 Lott at 70%. I will shoot them at the range on Friday and render a report.

James

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jamesicus
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Posted: March 17 2010 at 8:59pm | IP Logged Quote jamesicus

Charshooter wrote:
I think that is quite something shooting that big caliber at your age. I had a 458 Winchester for a few years and have at least a full box of the Hornady 500 grain and maybe some of the 350 grain. If you find yourself enjoying the big gum, I can put them on the sale board, but I really do not want to bother if someone is not interested.

Good luck with the light load

Thank you, Charshooter. I am interested in the ammunition you mention.

James
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Charshooter
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Posted: March 17 2010 at 9:11pm | IP Logged Quote Charshooter

jamesicus wrote:
Charshooter wrote:
I think that is quite something shooting that big caliber at your age. I had a 458 Winchester for a few years and have at least a full box of the Hornady 500 grain and maybe some of the 350 grain. If you find yourself enjoying the big gum, I can put them on the sale board, but I really do not want to bother if someone is not interested.

Good luck with the light load

Thank you, Charshooter. I am interested in the ammunition you mention.

James


I can list the bullets, but you should check with the moderators as to if you can but without 40 posts. It will take me a few days to dig them up. I have all my supplies well stored in ammo cases. I have no use for then anymore and will ask a reasonable price.

I think shipping might be high and I am fairly sure the post office would have no rule against plain bullets, but I will have to make sure. I think Paul and others can help us on this.

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jamesicus
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Posted: March 18 2010 at 9:19am | IP Logged Quote jamesicus

Charshooter wrote:
.......... I can list the bullets, but you should check with the moderators as to if you can but without 40 posts. It will take me a few days to dig them up. I have all my supplies well stored in ammo cases. I have no use for then anymore and will ask a reasonable price.

I think shipping might be high and I am fairly sure the post office would have no rule against plain bullets, but I will have to make sure. I think Paul and others can help us on this.

On reflection, Charshooter, I think the logistic problems make the process too unwieldy. Thank you for the offer anyway.

James
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Posted: March 18 2010 at 11:04am | IP Logged Quote Leftoverdj

jamesicus wrote:
Pete D. wrote:
Trail Boss is the way to go.
Fill the case with TB to the point where the bottom of the
bullet will be when it is seated.
Dump that powder onto a scale and weigh it.
70% of that is your start charge. Best accuracy will be
somewhere between there and 100%.
According to Hodgdon, one cannot put enough Trail Boss into
a given case to exceed SAAMI max pressures.
Have fun.
Pete

Thank you, Pete -- I bought a container of Trail Boss today and handloaded twenty rounds of .458 Lott at 70%. I will shoot them at the range on Friday and render a report.

James



Caution, James, caution. What's the weight on that charge? I don't think that rule was meant to apply to cavernous cases. It might apply to pistol cases.

Trail Boss is roughly equivalent Red Dot by weight. I for one ain't gonna go shooting off large charges of a powder that fast under 500 grain bullets,
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