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What can you tell me about the Magnum Research BFR in .450 Marlin?

Discussion in 'Handgun Discussion' started by SPU, Feb 14, 2012.

  1. SPU

    SPU Southwest Oregon Old Fart

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    OK, it was a bit of an impulse buy, and i comes in a few days. It is a cannon, but I was intrigued by the BFR in 450 Marlin, which seems a little less numerous than 45/70. If I want to spend a few bucks I can get the revolver fitted with a 45/70 Govt cylinder as well.

    So aside from a big boom, does anybody reload for this gun? Favorite bullets, powder, loads, etc.? Brass seems to be a bit scarce, but I'm going to try some leverrevolution ammo to see how it shoots.

    Anybody use a scope, and if so what can withstand the recoil?

    All experienced observations and advice welcome. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. SPU

    SPU Southwest Oregon Old Fart

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    No response? OK I have heard the ultradot 30 works well on this revolver. Anybody have a comment that is pithy? :laugh:
     
  3. billt

    billt Glendale, Arizona Active Member

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    I have the Magnum Research BFR in both .45-70 and .500 S&W Magnum. The .500 is on par with the .450 Marlin in terms of recoil. In a 10" barreled heavy single action it is completely controllable. With factory 405 grain soft points the .45-70 is very mild in comparison. The loads I have the .45-70 pictured with are 547 gr. Lyman Gas Checks over a heavy dose of IMR 3031 powder, (lower photo). They are quite hot, but the BFR handles them easily.

    The thing to remember with these guns in rifle calibers, (.45-70, .450 Marlin), is to stick with as fast of a burning powder as possible. Most of the newer loading manuals will have them listed in the pistol section with the appropriate loads. If you use rifle data the powder will not burn effectively in the relatively short 10" barrel.

    MagnumResearchBFR45-70.jpg

    MagnumResearchBFR500SW2.jpg

    45-70500SWBFRRevolverjpg.jpg
     
  4. SPU

    SPU Southwest Oregon Old Fart

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    Thanks Billt, the use of fast powders makes sense. I've read of some owners complaining of powder residue and unburnt powder; they must have used rifle loads. Thanks for the tip. Fine looking handguns you have. I am looking forward to mine coming this week.
     
  5. billt

    billt Glendale, Arizona Active Member

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    You'll love it. They're fun to shoot. I really like the way Magnum Research puts a screw through the cylinder pin so it won't back out from recoil. Also how the cylinder spins freely in either direction when the loading gate is opened. Really nice features.
     
  6. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    Y'all know my Marlin 1895 45-70 is only 4 ounces heavier and easier to handle right?

    I wouldn't mind 1 cylinder full of one of those but then it's back to the lever guns.

    Nice lookers though
     
  7. SPU

    SPU Southwest Oregon Old Fart

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    But a Marlin is still 4 ounces heavier, longer and bulkier, doesn't fit in a bandolier holster, and is not, in my opinion, nearly as cool. A Ford is more practical than a Ferrari, but just not as sexy somehow. :bluelaugh::bluelaugh:

    My plan is to get a Browning lever action in .450 Marlin as well. Similar to owning a .357 magnum handgun and lever gun combo. The great thing about guns is if you find out something doesn't work for you, you can sell it. I hear a lot of people love these guns. A buddy in La Pine let me know a few days ago he owned a BFR in 45-70 years ago, hated it, and sold it for something else. I wish you nothing but luck and happiness with your choices.:)
     
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  8. billt

    billt Glendale, Arizona Active Member

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    Marlin45-70GuideGun.jpg

    True. Nothing wrong with Marlin .45-70 rifles. This is my Marlin Ported Guide Gun in .45-70. It's a nice handling rifle. But it's no handgun. There is nothing it can do the .45-70 BFR cannot. Especially if one were to scope it. I prefer iron sights on my lever guns and single actions. To me scoping them is like putting a spoiler on a stagecoach. With the correct handloads, velocity and energy levels of the .45-70 don't give up much in the 10" barrel of the BFR.
     
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  9. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    Billt,maybe you have good eyes and don't need optics. Some peoples kids.
    Actually I'm going to try a peep site on the lever gun.

    Back to the BFR.There's a guy up here that has about 5 rifle caliber handgun.He loves those things.My hands just don't like the recoil,but those are pretty cool guns.Kind of want a 454 casull with a 7"bbl.I'd have to see how the recoil is.
    Do you port those monsters?

    I wouldn't say cooler than a lever gun,though, as that was what I grew up with.Both single action revolvers and lever guns are my favorites.Classic looks.
     
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  10. billt

    billt Glendale, Arizona Active Member

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    Actually the .45-70 with factory loads is quite mild. I don't like shooting factory ammo because it's needlessly expensive, and because it doesn't lend itself well to the BFR's shorter barrel. But I do shoot Remington 405 Gr. Soft Point Bullets with IMR 3031 Powder and the recoil isn't that bad. The .45-70 is a low pressure cartridge. Because of that it's a bit like shooting my Ruger Super Redhawk in .44 Magnum.

    Now the .500 S&W BFR is another story. It has plenty of recoil. Far more than the .45-70 with factory duplication loads. It is still quite controllable. I generally shoot Sierra 400 Gr. Soft Points in it with H-110 powder. It is a very accurate gun. Scoping both of them would make them more accurate, as well as useful at longer range, but I just don't like the looks of scoped single actions. I've been trying to work with iron sights lately. I'm finding with practice they can be quite accurate. Even at some of the longer ranges.