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New Lehigh Bullet(s) Choice

Old 04-19-2021, 05:38 PM
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Default New Lehigh Bullet(s) Choice

A lot of you already know that I am really fond of the Lehigh CF bullets. So to add to that I offer this information.

Last week I was doing some muzzle loading bullet investigation, looking at what might be available. I have always been fond of the Lehigh .458x300 gr. Lehigh then Lehigh/Bloodline seen below.



This bullet has long been a favorite of mine for elk hunting. Several people have told me that I really do not need that heavy of a bullet to harvest elk. Which totally may be true, but in my mind I am far more interested in the energy that a bullet might carry to the target within my 200 yard range limitation. The Lehigh 300 with the achieved velocity, energy, - combined with the CF function (Controlled Fracturing). These factors all create outstanding Terminal Ballistics.

After viewing and searching the Lehigh site I found what I thought could be a really interesting bullet. Lehigh lists it as a bullet for a 450 SOCOM. It is a .458x300 CF. This bullet appears to have a more aerodynamic design and might have a greater BC than the computed BC. It is designed to work down to 1200 fps. I believe this bullet might even perform better the Lehigh/Bloodline. The down side is the bullet is designed for a 1-20 bore twist. I do believe it will shoot well from my 1-28 bores. I have shot other longer bullets from my 1-28 with great success using the upper limits of powder loads (110 to 120 gr. Vol of T7 and BH.



When discussing this bullet with personnel at Lehigh they suggested another bullet that I might look at. A bullet designed for the 45-70 Government - .458x300 CF with cut petals. The nose on this CF bullet will function at sub-sonic velocity down to 750 fps. Again the bullet is suggested for a 1-20 twist because of the length of the bullet.



I will include two calculated ballistic sheets computed from the velocities I achieved with T7 and BH powder loads. Again I should mention that I am not shooting a 1-20 twist rifle, just a standard Knight muzzleloader with a 1-28 twist.







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Old 04-19-2021, 05:52 PM
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What velocity range is recommended for the 1/20 twist.?
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Old 04-19-2021, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by lemoyne View Post
What velocity range is recommended for the 1/20 twist.?
Here you go Lee

For the SP 3200 to 1200 fps

For the LP 2500 to 750 fps

I have not shot these at this point just starting my exploration. I have shot another variety .458x305 - it shot great!
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Old 04-20-2021, 09:04 AM
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Sharing a couple other thoughts discussed with Lehigh. One of my main concerns with the SP bullet is - at what velocity will the bullet CF function stop functioning. According to the Lehigh specs the SP bullet operates from 3200 fps to 1200 fps which at extend ranges could be a problem. My calculated ballistic sheets show that I really should be alright to 200 yards.

Addressing that problem in our discussion is when he brought up the Subsonic LP version of the bullet. This bullet operates from 2500 fps to 750 fps - so it would certainly would operate out the the 200 yard mark.

Another topic brought up in our conversation was bullet slippage in a sabot. Since the Lehigh brass bullet is so hard and smooth the possibility of it slipping certainly exists. Which brings up another couple of points... This bullet is designed as a centerfire bullet and is manufactured to much tighter dimension specifications. Especially the diameter specs. Because of this I have found that shooting a comparable Lehigh .458x305CF in a normal MMP HPH .457/.458x50 sabot it really seems to go down the bore very smoothly but in my mind somewhat loose which might allow the bullet slippage in the sabot. Because of this concern I started using the MMP Black .452x50 sabot - which did increase the amount of pressure needed to load the bullet, and I feel reduce the fear of bullet slippage.

This picture tends to show what I am indicating



Look closely at the bottom of the bullet in each sabot. The far left is a Lehigh .458 muzzle loading bullet installed in the Orange sabot. Notice the bullet is not completely seated in the bottom of the sabot. In the middle picture the SP bullet drops very right into the sabot and seats all the way down. Almost loose in the sabot. It is just a more skinny load. The left had pic is the SP installed in the Black HPH-24 sabot and as with the ML bullet it is not seated in/on the bottom of the sabot. The bullet will completely seat when pushed through the crown and down the bore.

With this tighter fit the chances of the bullet slipping in the sabot is reduced.

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Old 04-20-2021, 09:05 AM
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Sharing a couple other thoughts discussed with Lehigh. One of my main concerns with the SP bullet is - at what velocity will the bullet CF function stop functioning. According to the Lehigh specs the SP bullet operates from 3200 fps to 1200 fps which at extend ranges could be a problem. My calculated ballistic sheets show that I really should be alright to 200 yards.

Addressing that problem in our discussion is when he brought up the Subsonic LP version of the bullet. This bullet operates from 2500 fps to 750 fps - so it would certainly would operate out the the 200 yard mark.

Another topic brought up in our conversation was bullet slippage in a sabot. Since the Lehigh brass bullet is so hard and smooth the possibility of it slipping certainly exists. Which brings up another couple of points... This bullet is designed as a centerfire bullet and is manufactured to much tighter dimension specifications. Especially the diameter specs. Because of this I have found that shooting a comparable Lehigh .458x305CF in a normal MMP HPH .457/.458x50 sabot it really seems to go down the bore very smoothly but in my mind somewhat loose which might allow the bullet slippage in the sabot. Because of this concern I started using the MMP Black .452x50 sabot - which did increase the amount of pressure needed to load the bullet, and I feel reduce the fear of bullet slippage.

This picture tends to show what I am indicating



Look closely at the bottom of the bullet in each sabot. The far left is a Lehigh .458 muzzle loading bullet installed in the Orange sabot. Notice the bullet is not completely seated in the bottom of the sabot. In the middle picture the SP bullet drops very right into the sabot and seats all the way down. Almost loose in the sabot. It is just a more skinny load. The left had pic is the SP installed in the Black HPH-24 sabot and as with the ML bullet it is not seated in/on the bottom of the sabot. The bullet will completely seat when pushed through the crown and down the bore.

With this tighter fit the chances of the bullet slipping in the sabot is reduced.


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Old 04-28-2021, 11:16 AM
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Well I failed. These bullets were both listed with a 1-14 twist rate. I was hopping that if I shot them with 120 gr. vol of T7 or BH I might get them to stabilize from a 1-28 Knight. Didn't really happen. So for shooting form a ML - I have to take them off my list.

This first target shows the wobble of the bullets at 25 yards shot with 50gr. vol T7 - which I really expected.



The second target - shot with 120 gr. vol still shows a slight wobble.



Darn!
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Old 04-29-2021, 05:26 AM
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Too bad Sabot. But thanks for the report and possibly saving us some money.
But I bet these would shoot great out of my .45-70 Guide Gun!
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Old 04-29-2021, 05:49 AM
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Originally Posted by bronko22000 View Post
Too bad Sabot. But thanks for the report and possibly saving us some money.
But I bet these would shoot great out of my .45-70 Guide Gun!
O ya no doubt!! They really are a good bullet for the 45-70. I did not realize how fast a twist was used on the 45-70.

Last edited by sabotloader; 04-29-2021 at 05:51 AM.
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