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Trapdoor .45-70 Springfield strength
We all know trapdoors are weak...Right?
I have never heard of anyone blowing up a trapdoor.  I guess someone has.  We have all heard they aren't very strong. 

A couple of years ago I shot some modern high pressure 45/70 rounds in one of the H & R trapdoor replicas.  Those rifles are valuable today, but when they were offered for sale they sat on the rack for a year or so.  The owner told me that they H&R's were much stronger than the originals, and I believed  him.  So we fired off those heavy rounds.  Kicked like a mule and did not blow up.  Wouldn't do it today however!
If you look at a diagram of the "locking lug" of the TD Springfield, it isn't very strong.

Just as with Sniders, the main problem is when you have a case failure and high pressure gases fly back into the breech-that is where things get scary.

As for "Modern Designs" I can cite the safety of the bolt action Ruger rifle. I stopped by my favorite gun shop and the gunsmith handed me a rifle that had just come in to be "fixed."

The rifle was in .243 caliber and the idiot owner had chambered and FIRED A .308 ROUND!

Not only had the Ruger action held together, but held together while the brass of the cartridge case melted and flowed back into the action, permanently brazing the bolt closed!

One could check by running a cleaning rod down the bore, the bore was clear. Which meant the .308 bullet had squeezed down to .243 and had probably left the muzzle at "Light Speed plus 100 MPH." As for "Pressure," it had to be extremely high.

My point: Take it easy with Sniders and TD Springfields. Their major design parameter was to come up with an action that would convert a muzzleloader to breechloader and the "strength" of the action was barely considered.
That's some testimonial to the strength of the Ruger bolt action design.  You should send that message to Ruger, I'm sure they would appreciate it.

As for the strength, or lack of, in old rifles, I never try to see if I can blow one up.  I treat those old war horses with respect and load them according to loading manuals and never put a high pressure round through an old trapdoor.  That being said, I did fire some in an H&R trapdoor carbine once, not being all that bright I guess, and the weapon held true.  I'll never do it again however.  NEVER.
Here is a Marlin .45-70 that blew up after some bad reloads.

[Image: Marlinblowup3.jpg]

[Image: Marlinblowup2.jpg]

[Image: Marlinblowup1.jpg]


Now those are impressive pictures thar, Bear!  Do you know what the load was?  How was the shooter's left hand/arm after that experience? 

I've got a Marlin 336 in 35 Rem that I love.  It's a 1952 rifle and very well made.  Shoots just fine, but I've not tried any handloads in it.  If I think a round is loaded too hot I pull the bullet and reload it with something I trust.  No used to spoil my left hand/arm and eyes.

When I worked at Euroarms of America we got back one of our replica Colt 1860 revolvers from a customer to replace under our "Lifetime Warranty" guarantee.


The customer stated that he had loaded it up with 'black powder' and the first shot had done the damage!

[I quit believing Fairy Tales when I was 6 years old.]

I did note that he had unloaded the chambers that were still intact.

Anyway I sent him a brand new revolver and suggested that next time he confine his loads to to using FFFg Goex Black Powder.
Regarding that blown up Marlin lever action rifle:

1. When reloading smokeless cartridges make very, very sure that you are using the right powder according to the Loading Manual.

2. I ALWAYS visually check the powder level in each cartridge in the loading block BEFORE I seat the bullet in the case.

I HAVE NEVER UNDERSTOOD the "logic (?)" of those reloaders that insist on loading their cartridges "Hotter" than any loading manual recommends.

IF you want a bigger, more powerful gun, they buy one of the Super Duper Magnums-there are a lot of Magnums out there that will blow King Kong into next week.

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