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A new Lehigh bullet .458x260CF Sabotless

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A new Lehigh bullet .458x260CF Sabotless

Old 03-11-2019, 12:12 PM
  #1  
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Default A new Lehigh bullet .458x260CF Sabotless

On another forum there was a posting about a new ML bullet offering from Lehigh Defense.

It was a .458x260CF-HP Sabotless. When I first read about it I was sure it was a mistake and should have been listed a .45x260CF. I sent an email to Lehigh and got an answer back. It is a .458 bullet, built for a true 45-70 rifle barrel. One of the reason that Lehigh went this way is that there a lot true 45-70 rifle barrels that have been converted and modified for muzzleloader application. There are 2 main differences between the true 45-70 barrel and 45 ML barrel.


1. The 45-70 rifle barrel is manufactured to much tighter tolerances than a ML barrel
2. The grooves in a 45-70 barrel are deeper than in a manufactured ML barrel.


Normally the grooves are more shallow in a ML barrel and the bore diameter can vary over a wider tolerance range. With that in mind know that the .458x260 is also built to tighter tolerances of the true 45-70.


This is the new bullet inserted in my Knight 45 cal. Super DISC. I was really curious if I could load this bullet in my rifle.




My DISC measures .452 +/- from land to land, so you can see the bullet inserted into the top of the crown very easily but stops at the first drive barb on the bullet. To get it through the crown it takes 2-3 really hard smacks on my short starter. Once through the crown, the bullet will then go down the bore very easily with a range rod. Almost to easy but tight enough to be gripping the lands into the grooves.


The drive barbs on a new bullet do measure .458 or with my micrometer.



Because of the effort needed to get the bullet through the crown I wondered if I could re-size the barbs to a lesser diameter. My search for a re-sizing die lead me to an inexpensive Lee die. When I pushed the bullet through the die it did take a little effort. But... it worked


After re-sizing the bullet drive barbs were reduced to .4535. Pushing this through the crown of the rifle was greatly reduced and could be easily loaded while hunting. Still it is advantageous to use a short starter.



My next question... what about those of you that have tighter bores and they are out there... Some CVA owners have suggested their bores are .499 land to land. My next step was to re-size the .453 to .451.




With these re-sizing experiments - I really think these bullets could almost be a 'universal' or 'Generic' bullet. Fitting many different 45 cal. ML's on the market.Best part! I really believe these are excellent hunting bullets with great Terminal Performance.


I did get an opportunity to get out and so some shooting last week... I confirmed their accuracy at 100 yards and even got conned into shooting a 400 yard gong! Shot at it 3 times first shot was way off the next two went just over the top of the gong, which was good for me as I was truly guessing through the scope.




Last edited by sabotloader; 03-12-2019 at 09:07 AM.
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Old 03-12-2019, 08:15 AM
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Sabot doesn't sizing down to .451 damage the bands by rolling them back?
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Old 03-12-2019, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by bronko22000 View Post
Sabot doesn't sizing down to .451 damage the bands by rolling them back?
Yes, it does roll them back slightly. It seems to me that it actually "helps" the bullet get a better 'wider' grip on the edge of the lands.
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Old 03-12-2019, 07:11 PM
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Yep. Creates a couple thou more bearing surface to ride the lands. May have to give that bullet a little run through the smokeless though not sure if the skirt would hold up under the pressures. Maybe a low dose load keeping it around 1400-1500 or so.
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Old 03-12-2019, 07:55 PM
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Mike, Did you Lube the Bullet before resizing? Makes a HUGE difference!! Anything over .002 and i Roll them across a Lube Pad, They Go Through effortlessly, and ZERO finning. I go as far as to “Pre Lube” the inside of the Sizing Die before i get Started, I use a Qtip with Lube on it and Coat the Sizing Ring of the Die. A job that took a Hard Pull on the Press Handle, Just became easy enough to do with 1 finger!!

Last edited by Idaholewis; 03-12-2019 at 08:01 PM.
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Old 03-13-2019, 09:04 AM
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Originally Posted by 54bore View Post
Mike, Did you Lube the Bullet before resizing? Makes a HUGE difference!! Anything over .002 and i Roll them across a Lube Pad, They Go Through effortlessly, and ZERO finning. I go as far as to “Pre Lube” the inside of the Sizing Die before i get Started, I use a Qtip with Lube on it and Coat the Sizing Ring of the Die. A job that took a Hard Pull on the Press Handle, Just became easy enough to do with 1 finger!!
Thanks Lou, I have re-sized these bullet both ways - with lube and without. Really doesn't make much difference. Resizing from 458 to 4535 is very easy. Then resizing the 4535 to 451 is really not difficult at all. Resizing from 458 to 451 is more difficult but nothing really difficult.
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