.450 paperpatch loading Husqvarna 37A

Started by zwartkruit jager, 26. August 2021 kl. 13:35:50

Previous topic - Next topic

zwartkruit jager

I have a .450 BPE  37A Husqvarna underlever/system Anglais special steel tubes (1906).
I would like to use the gun for game hunting. Can anyone help me with loading instructions?

Does a regular .450 NE cartridge fit or is the rim to thick ( 0.42 vs 0.40)?
Do I have to use Swiss BP 1,5 / 2 or 3 FF
What is the usual BP load? (120 grain?)
What bullet size and weight is best/common ? .447 / 270 or heavier gr?
Should the bullets be full lead or are copper jacket ones okay as well ( size?)

And many more questions I am not aware of right now.

Thank you for your help!

Cap'n Redneck

Congratulations on a fine double-rifle! 
According to "Husqvarna Kulvapen 1870-1970" the Model 37 transitioned from System Anglais to System Greener (top-lever) in 1906, so Yours must be one of the last with the classic underlever. 
Unfortunately the Swedish book gives no loading data for the guns...

I have some admittedly limited experience with a British made double-rifle in .450 BP Express.
Regular .450 NE cartridge cases should fit.  I know NORMA-cases fit in mine.
I would recommend Swiss BP in 1,5 Fg granulation (Swiss # 4) for a large-capacity case like this.
The 3,25" / 82,5mm cases are about identical to the .45-120 Sharps Straight, however with the modern solid-base cases You might not be able to cram a full 120 grains in them and still apply a crimp to the bullet.
I suggest You let the final loading column decide how much BP will fit in the case.
In addition to the bullet You might want to add card wads, grease cookies, etc.
Even if You end up around 105 - 115 grains this gun will still pack quite a lot of wallop at both ends...!

I can't offer much advise on Paper-Patch bullets.  Hopefully someone else will chime in...?
What I can say is that the weight of the bullets has direct impact on the way the gun is regulated.
Meaning that a too light or too heavy bullet will not shoot to the same point-of-aim from the left and right barrel.  Unless someone comes up with the exact bullet-weight that Husqvarna used to regulate their double-rifles You will have to experiment Yourself.
Personally I prefer lead-alloy bullets with grease grooves over paper-patched bullets.

I'd recommend You to slug both barrels and find the max. groove diameters. 
The old .450" BPE bores tend to be a little larger than the common .458" to .459" barrels of today.

I would recommend against trying copper jacketed bullets in a gun like this.
Jacketed bullets do not play well with BP anyway...
Sålenge det er bly i lufta, er det fortsatt håp......

zwartkruit jager

Dear CR,
Thank you for the tips and tricks.
I suppose I have to order an adjustable mould to tune the bullet weight in order to get the optimum regulation. But which calibre/size? Indeed slugging the tubes might be wise but feels awkward, especially since it's double riffle and I don't want to stress the soldering.
Although I did a lot of reading on the topic I am still confused. Some advice to patch the bullet to the bore size diameter and other advocate patching to groove size. The letter seems more obvious to me. I just bought the book "Paper Patching" from Paul Matthews and hope to get "enlightened".



Cap'n Redneck

I strongly advise You to slug the bores first, or You will be buying bullet-moulds blindly...

If You can get hold of a couple of .454" or .457" roundballs from somebody who shoots percussion revolvers, then these can be used to slug the bores of Your doublerifle without stressing the soldering.
If the roundballs are a little small, You can place them on a solid surface and give them a whack or two with a hammer; that will make them bump up to size.  Lube the barrels and the roundballs and You will be okay.

Paul Matthews will indeed put You on the right track as far as paper-patching is concerned.
Sålenge det er bly i lufta, er det fortsatt håp......

zwartkruit jager

Plan will be as follows:
Get some wooden rods/dowels to slug with. Buy some lead fishing weights of the right size to act as slugs. Then I probably will make a cast of both chambers to determine the extent the bullet can protrude out of the case into the barrel. Determine the rotation of the rifling to see if the bullet should be a low or heavy weight. When done the next step will be buying 1.5 Fg and the appropriate mould.
Quite a project I won't over rush.

zwartkruit jager

Dear Svartkrutt enthusiasts,
I made a chamber cast of the 37A and it appears that the cartridge /case is a
500/450 no 1 BPE  2 ¾ inch  ( https://naboje.org/en/node/8104 ).
Sadly these cases aren't regularly available any more. Does anyone of you have a suggestion where I can get them?

Cap'n Redneck

According to the "Handloader's Manual of Cartridge Conversions" the .500/.450 No. 1 BPE can be made from the .475 No. 2 Nitro Express case.  (it says turn the rim to .660" dia. and thin it to .062" thick.  Cut case to 2.8".  Full length size, then trim to length and chamfer.)
I would try to contact the firm of Henry Krank in England for any of these cases.

Sålenge det er bly i lufta, er det fortsatt håp......


In the old bertram price list from 2012:
500/450 No1 Express             $300    (100)
500/450 No1 Carbine             $300    (100)                   
500/450 No2                     $300    (100)                   


I have 3 500-450 No.1 BPE Husqvarna rolling block rifles with ratchet rifling for paper patch bullets.

I formed my cases from 470 NE cases. I used  series of dies to swag down the cases and then fire formed the cases after annealing. I used approx 100gr of 1 1/2F Swiss powder to fire form the cases placed behind a card wad and a load of #6 shot placed the the neck area and capped off with some BP bullet lube to hold it all in the case.

I haven't gotten any gooved bullets to shoot well in the one rifle. Sort of set the project aside to work with other Husqvarna #33 rifles.


How do I post a picture...... can't decipher the icons