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Thread: 458 2" American?

  1. #1

    458 2" American?

    Hi all,
    I am toying with clambering a rifle in this calibre. Does anyone have any personal experiance of reloading for and using this round. I know it's a 450 marlin without the longer belt. But was interested in recycling 458 and 375 brass specifically. My big for the environment!
    Cheers K

  2. #2
    Honestly, no experience what so ever... Though I did read that Norm' Chandler (Iron Brigade Armoury) toyed with a very similar load for odd applications. It may be another starting point.

  3. #3
    I built one years ago for a customer but never shot it much myself past the test fire. I got the loads from a fairly extensive article on building one of these. If i can remember which journal it was in I'll scan it for you.~Muir

    PS: Damn! I had a few synapses left that managed to fire and I found the article on the 458 x 2". It's pretty extensive and covers case forming and such. I'm sure the load data is dated. The author was Thomas Bish. Ill get it scanned this weekend if you'd like.
    Last edited by Muir; 27-05-2016 at 05:28.

  4. #4
    Funny enough , I'm almost finished building one right now . It's for a friend of mine who likes uncommon calibers .It's actually at Conquest 1's shop right now getting it's chamber cut .
    It's a pretty useful round , that gives you hot loaded 45/70 ballistics in a bolt action , definitely a useful round for these parts .
    You can use any belted case of sufficient length to form brass , but keep an eye on neck thickness as there is a lot of variation from one make to another . It's one of the easier wildcats to form your own cases for . Bruce , the owner of the rifle mentioned , bought a large lot of Hornady 458 basic brass and trimmed them to the 458X2 overall length . You can use 45/70 loading data almost straight across in your 458X2 with the usual precautions of course . Most rifles that are used for this round will be stronger than even the newer levers used for the 45/70 ( with the exception of the Ruger No 1 of course ) so you'll have a large safety margin to work with .
    I've had great results using IMR 3031 and H4198 in the 458X2 , as matter of fact , I used the loads mentioned in Cartridges of the World and they shot great . Let me know if you'd like the data .
    What action will you be using for your build ?

    AB

  5. #5
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    Unless you've an issue with receiver length I can't...now we have Trail Boss and other powders not available when the .458 W M was designed...see that it offers ANY advantage over the standard cartridge.

    What's the role or the raison d'etre that you have that means that you need the 2" case length (other than the pleasure of the project itself)? What type of weapon are you thinking of chambering it in?

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by enfieldspares View Post
    Unless you've an issue with receiver length I can't...now we have Trail Boss and other powders not available when the .458 W M was designed...see that it offers ANY advantage over the standard cartridge.

    What's the role or the raison d'etre that you have that means that you need the 2" case length (other than the pleasure of the project itself)? What type of weapon are you thinking of chambering it in?
    Lol , you're right . Other than rifle weight and action length , there isn't much that you can't do with a 458WM . I was looking at putting a 458WM together , I probably won't as I have a Marlin 1895 45/70 that gives me the velocities that I'd load the 458 down to anyway . I think the main attraction is having a shorter , lighter rifle that gives you hot loaded 45/70 capabilities with out the feeding problems of a rimmed cartridge in a box fed magazine rifle . Years ago I built a 45/70 on a crapped out Siamese Mauser , after a lot of work and filthy language I got it to feed reliably , but as I said , it took a lot of work . The use of a belted case just makes it a lot easier to get a reliably feeding rifle in , essentially , a rimless 45/70 .

    AB

  7. #7
    Thanks for the feed back. I was thinking of either an enfield no3 or a martini - I have access to a ruger number 1 barrel in 458 win mag. I thought it could be set back to 458 american and would make a great woodland fallow/boar rifle?
    Thanks - Karamoja
    Last edited by karamoja; 27-05-2016 at 18:21.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by karamoja View Post
    Thanks for the feed back. I was thinking of either an enfield no3 or a martini - I have access to a ruger number 1 barrel in 458 win mag. I thought it could be set back to 458 american and would make a great woodland fallow/boar rifle?
    Thanks - Karamoja
    Since both of these rifles are designed to function with rimmed cases , it would probably be easier if you went with a 45/70 . Another factor would be action strength , I don't think either of these actions would stand up to well to full house 458X2 loads . To be honest , any modern bolt rifle would be more suitable . The above mentioned 458X2 was put together on an older savage that was originally in 300WSM . It was a simple rebarrel job . It doesn't have the class of one of the older designs , but it's a lot less work and expense .
    If you're set on the No 3 or a Martini , I would definitely go with a 45/70 clambering . That being said , I'd probably use a No 4 Lee Enfield for either conversion , they're stronger and you have a very usable rear sight that the issue rifles were equipped with . Food for thought .

    AB

  9. #9
    Forgot to mention , the Ruger barrel would be a simpler shorten chamber end and rechamber barrel job . Keeping the barrel and sights properly indexed is a bit fiddly , but any decent smith would be able to do it for you .

    AB

  10. #10
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    OK KJ. I see where you are coming from. In that case I'd suggest the now rare .375 "What Not" (no I'm not trying to be funny or rude) that is essentially the .303 British not necked down to that nominal .303" but left as is. It'll be almost, but not quite, a .375 Winchester on steroids, as it were, and not quite a .405 Winchester.

    AH! SEE BELOW!

    But...you have this spare Ruger No1 barrel and want a repeater. Hmm! Not sure and for the deer you'll still have that velocity/muzzle energy legislation. That, in theory, your .375 "What Not" will better achieve, IMHO, and of course you'll have ready available .375" bullets...if you can swap or get a .375 barrel?

    Ah! It's the .375 x 2 1/2" Flanged Nitro Express. I saw an H & H double rifle in that at Westley Richards some thirty years ago when they were at Bournbrook. It's a classic "pig" calibre although I don't know about its velocity and muzzle energy..achievable in your Lee or Martini...but, here it is...

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.375_F..._Nitro_Express
    Last edited by enfieldspares; 27-05-2016 at 19:17.

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