Thursday, April 8, 2010

Springer .450 Long


Thanks ever so much for your time. The rifle I am interested in is a Springer, and listed as a .450 Long, the German version of the .450 X 3 1/4 BPE. I have the same caliber in a Springer drilling and as an avid rifle person have been interested in an African hunt using a fine quality vintage firearm. I was fortunate to locate a Springer drilling and now have made a deal on the Springer .450 double. I wish to hunt thin-skinned game such as leopard and plains game. Now that I have the arms I need guidance on a load for the .450. From the ground up so to speak. Brass, bullets, powder, dies, ballistic charts or formulas, etc. Once I get the rifle in hand I will inform you of the markings on the rifle and I will note you immediately for your opinion.

Once again thanks for your time.
Russ T. USA

From the photo you have a wondeful rifle that looks as nice as any English rifle of the same time period. Since the case is the dimensional and ballistic twin of the .450 3 1/4” bpe I will give you the data I have. Brass cases can be found at Bertram or Huntingtons. Dies can be found at Huntingtons or CH Tool as well as the shell holders. The original round was loaded with 110 grains of black powder so the smokeless powder to use and the formula for the correct velocity is this: 40% of the original load (110 grains) is 44 grains. Use IMR 4198 and the 44 grains should give the approximate nitro-for-black velocity. 350-grain bullets, either Hornady jacketed or cast lead, is the proper bullet. Use large rifle magnum primers for good ignition of the powder and some kapok or pillow stuffing to hold the powder against the primer. When you shoot the target, if the bullets hit a bit far apart then the velocity is too slow and if they cross fire then the velocity is a bit too fast. Then, adjust the charge up or down until they print to the sights, 2-3-inch group at 50 yards is fine. I would suggest you slug the bore to check for a proper diameter of .458”.

With the above you are ready to go and I have done exactly the same for a dozen black powder express rifles in the past.

Good shooting.