Springfield 45-70 Trapdoor

Discussion in 'Large-Bore/Small-Bore Rifle/Shotgun' started by cpt-t, Dec 3, 2017.

  1. cpt-t

    cpt-t Active Member

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    I was given an original Springfield Trapdoor 45-70 by my Best Friend & Shooting Pardner just prior to his death, about a year ago. The Rifle IMHO is in pristine original condition and I finally got around shooting it a few times last weekend. And it shot extremely well with my reload of 35grs of IMR3031 and a 405gr LRNFP Bullet. Off of a rest at 50yds it will group 3 rounds in a group about the size of a Ping Ball. I was really pleased and impressed with it's performance. My rifle has a 32 1/2 inch barrel. I was told that this model is called a Long Tom Model. I just noticed my Rifle does not have a Bayonet Lug, isn't it supposed to have one. Also it has 3 Sling Swivels, one close to the heel of the stock. And two others right together on the barrel band about 7 1/2 inches down from the muzzle. The Rifle does not have a sling. How is a sling supposed to look and work with 3 sling swivels, anybody got any pictures. And where can I get a good quality copy of the sling that is supposed to be on it. My Friend ((( BILL ))) gave me several other Rifles and a few Pistols. With the understanding that my Son & I would shoot them all and not just let them sit in a gun safe. And we will do that. Thanks in advance for any information You can give me
    ken.
     
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  2. nmckenzie

    nmckenzie Well-Known Member

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    Springfield Trapdoor rifles took a socket bayonet which slipped over the muzzle, then turned and locked behind the front sight. As to the three swivels, the forward-most of the double swivels up front is a stacking swivel - used for stacking three rifles together. S&S Firearms (www.ssfirearmsa.com) should be able to help you with a sling.

    p.s. The exception to the socket bayoneted Trapdoor rifles was a combination ramrod-bayonet model. The rod was housed in the stock below the barrel, and retained in open or extended position by a locking system mounted below the muzzle.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2017

  3. cpt-t

    cpt-t Active Member

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    nmckenzie: Thank You very much for your information. I could have one of thoes Ramrod-Bayonet models. My rifle has what I thought was just a cleaning rod beneath the barrel, that I can`t seem to get to come out. And I have not tried very hard, I was afraid I might break something. I am severely limited mechanically, to be honest I am dangerous with a Screwdriver and not allowed to even think about touching powder tools. I would like to know just how much this rifle might be worth, not that I would ever sell it. But the Boys at Cabela's sure got excited when I brought it in to show it to them. But they would never give me a price on its worth. The rifle shot about and inch to the right & 8 inches high at 25yds and an inch to the right and 4 to 5 inches high at 50yds. With 35grs of IMR3031 powder and a 405gr LRNFP bullet. This load is very accurate and very comfortable in my rifle. I have had a love affair with 45-70`s for a long time and I shoot and reload for them a lot. I think I am really going to enjoy shooting this rifle, for it is already very special to me. Again thank You so much for Your Information.
    ken
     
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  4. nmckenzie

    nmckenzie Well-Known Member

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    Hop on Google, enter "Springfield Trapdoor Ramrod Bayonet Model", and it'll bring up several articles - same with You Tube. There were several variations of the bayonet and release system - three as best I recall, but each used a dual release, one located on either side of the lock, which were depressed simultaneously with thumb and index finger while the rod/bayonet was pulled forward with the free hand. Take a look at prices listed in "For Sale" entries for rod/bayonet Trapdoors and I think you'll be pleasantly surprised
     
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  5. cpt-t

    cpt-t Active Member

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    nmckenzie: Well I followed your advice on Youtube and learned how to get the cleaning rod out of my rifle. And my rifle is not the rod/bayonet model, it just has a cleaning rod. I never found out what it might be worth tho. But I found a lot of information on the Springfield Trapdoor Rifle that I didn`t know. I am not very knowledgeable on my computer. To be really honest I can barely turn mine off and on, but I enjoy messing with it and I have met some really nice people on it so far. Being`s that You live in Alaska You probably can answer a question I have about the 45-70 rifles. Is the 45-70 rifle considered a good choice for hunting Big Bears in Alaska. Again thanks you so much for all Your helpful information.
    ken
     
  6. Old Guns

    Old Guns Well-Known Member

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    There should NOT be a sling swivel on the heel of the stock. It should be located on the front of the trigger guard. Without pictures there is no way to determine a proper value for these guns. They are often arsenal rebuilt and may have combination of parts from earlier guns. As for bear there are MUCH better choices. The 45-70 in a modern rifle can be loaded hot enough for bears but in your old gun it has to kept to lower safe pressures which are not up to a bear.
     
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  7. nmckenzie

    nmckenzie Well-Known Member

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    Well, yes and no, and I'm not trying to sound funny. The 45/70+Ps (by Buffalo-Barnes, HSM, Garrett etc.) would do the job, but not in a Trapdoor. You'll notice that most loading manuals list "45/70 Trapdoor" loads - lower pressure rounds for use in the old warhorses, and also +P loads for use in Ruger Nos. 1/3, latter day Winchester Hi Walls, Shiloh Sharps and the like. I have an H&R M1873 repro SRC in 45/70 as well as a Springfield M1886 rod bayonet model that was manufactured in 1892. Anxious to shoot both I contacted Hornady to see if their "Leverevolution" 45/70 325gr would be suitable, and was assured this particular round would be suitable for use in the H&R repro or the Springfield original. Hope that helps.
     
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  8. cpt-t

    cpt-t Active Member

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    Old Guns: Again another Senior Moment on my part. I do not have a sling swivel on the heel of the stock of my Springfield Trapdoor. It is right where You said it should be in front of the Trigger Guard. Now how in the heck could I have done that. There is a Antique Gun Show once a year here in Wichita. So I will try to take it there to get one of the Venders with a good reputation to look it over and give me their opinion of just exactly what I have and what they think it might be worth. I have only one Modern Bolt Action Mauser in 45-70 that could take that type of ammo. But I am too old to even consider going Big Bear Hunting any more. And beside thoes Bears have never did anything to me to make me want to shoot one of them in the first place. And I probably couldn't afford the taxidermist bill any way. It`s just the Pits to get Old and Recoil Sensitive. I have just turned into an Old Wuss.
    ken
     
  9. nmckenzie

    nmckenzie Well-Known Member

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    Though we have long guns in our racks that're perfectly capable of taking big bears - .416 Rigby etc., I've never been so inclined. I did chase two young ones (probably 600lbs. or so) from one of our veggie patches a few years back. :)
     
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  10. Old Guns

    Old Guns Well-Known Member

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    I have 2 458 Magnums and I have never shot either nor do I intend to. Recoil is not a friend. When I was younger I used to shoot some heavy 45-70 loads out of a converted Siamese Mauser.
    As for bears, I live on the eastern shore of Maryland and there are no bears here since before the days of white men on the continent. Some how one got set loose here and he made a visit to my yard. I had to go out and pick up trash he drug into the woods.
     
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  11. cpt-t

    cpt-t Active Member

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    nmckenzie & Old Gun: Thanks a lot for all your help, in sharing your knowledge of the Springfield Trapdoor Rifle with me. I got bit by the 45-70 bug about 20 years ago. And my Son and I have several of them and really enjoy them. We use the reload I mentioned earlier about 98% of the time in all of our 45-70`s. We have shot 3 or 4 Deer and several Pigs plus a coyote or too over the years. But now mostly we use our 45-70`s to Cowboy Shoot, Shoot Steel Silhouettes, and Informal Plinking with our friends at our Gun Club`s Range. I really just enjoy going for a walk, in the woods or along a spring fed stream with one of my 45-70`s more all the time. However the the distance and time I spend out on those walks have both shortened quite a bit now. My legs just can`t hold up as long as they use to. Again thanks for sharing all Your Personal Knowledge and Information with me. I really appreciated it.
    ken
     
  12. deadin

    deadin Well-Known Member

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    You need one of these.....
    [​IMG]
     
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  13. nmckenzie

    nmckenzie Well-Known Member

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    Wow!
     
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