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Thread: Cartridge for 3 band, .46 (.45) Ballard Military Rifle ?

  1. #1
    Jack C., 69th NY is offline
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    Cartridge for 3 band, .46 (.45) Ballard Military Rifle ?

    As I understand it, SAC permits one "caliber" under and one "caliber" over when reworking the standard 3 band Ball & Williams, Merrimack and Brown Military rifles. Most, if not all have been modified to .45 Long Colt. Are there other options available? Has anyone else used another cartridge?
    Last edited by Jack C., 69th NY; 2 Weeks Ago at 04:29 PM.
    Jack Conway
    69th NY

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    rflmskt is offline
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    John Holland previously shared an outstanding solution using cast Lyman gas check style .45 Colt bullets and .44-40 brass that requires NO alteration to the firearm. He detailed the process in a comment on HP Gregory's 03-19-13 post regarding shooting .46 Ballards, in the "Shooting Tips & Tricks" forum on this bulletin board. I am not sure if this link will work...

    https://www.n-ssa.net/vbforum/showth...ht=.46+ballard

    After I tried unsuccessfully for some time to find a Lyman #454485 .45 Colt mould, which has long been discontinued, John was kind enough to send me a number of bullets cast from his mould to measure. I asked Tom at Accurate Bullet Molds to make a custom mould for me as close as possible to the Lyman, and it is now in his catalog as 45-250DG. I regret that I have not had an opportunity to try shooting it yet.

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    hobbler is offline
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    Wish I'd known you needed #454485. I have one that I've been meaning to get around to adjusting the pins to align the blocks. They're just a tiny bit out and misalignment on a mold is something that just flat bugs me.

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    hobbler is offline
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    By the way, if you can find one of the original version Lyman #454613, back before they changed it to look like a standard typical "minie", it has deeper lube grooves as you would want for black powder. And, it can be altered to provide a gas check base as well as plain base and hollow base.


  5. #5
    Jack C., 69th NY is offline
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    I've been aware of the 454-485 / 44-40 method for quite some time but I have never tried it. I hesitated with the gas check option, fearing that the case would separate from the gas check groove. Maybe I was over thinking my fear? I always went with the 45 Colt round. Perhaps it's time to try a new approach?
    Jack Conway
    69th NY

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack C., 69th NY View Post
    I've been aware of the 454-485 / 44-40 method for quite some time but I have never tried it. I hesitated with the gas check option, fearing that the case would separate from the gas check groove. Maybe I was over thinking my fear? I always went with the 45 Colt round. Perhaps it's time to try a new approach?
    I've been using a 44 special case with 25gr 3f,filler topped off with a RCBS 45-300 flat nose bullet. The bullet has a gass check which fits into the case.

  7. #7
    efritz is offline
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    Bob
    I tried the same as you. Shot fairly well at 50y but key holed at 100y. How well did yours do?
    When in doubt, mumble, when in trouble, delegate.

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    I think:

    I believe we are all looking in the wrong place for Ballard bullets. The original bullets are a much lighter weight than we are using. As a Ballard aficionado I urge folks to look at what I believe to be the answer. That is to use original style tapered base .44 Civil War revolver bullets. They are lighter and fit into the cases as an original would do. The only company that I am aware of that makes quality moulds for these is ERA Gone ( https://www.erasgonebullets.com ) . I count 4 different bullets that should work. Note that they do not make any mention of them being used for CW carbines. I have already noted the use of one of their 36 pistol bullets as a good one for use in the 1st model Maynards. There may be other mould manufacturers available but I don't know of any. Carry on & good luck
    N-SSA Member since 1974

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    glenn14cvi is offline
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    Ballard Info

    Is there a way to change the hammer to centerfire ? Seems a bit much to change barrels and breech blocks . Thanks

  10. #10
    Lou Lou Lou is offline
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    Glenn
    on my .44 rimfire carbine we v FFFg inverted the breech block to center fire and chambered it for 44-40. The Three bands are different caliber
    Lou Lou Lou Ruggiero
    Tammany Regt-42nd NYVI

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