Martini Henry Cadet

Chiappa, Marlin, Mossberg and non-Rossi Manufactured Pumas plus anything else with a leveraction.

Martini Henry Cadet

Postby Outback Jack » 01 Sep 2020 05

Hi All,

I have a really sweet rifle based on the single shot "Lever" action Martini Cadet manufactured by B.S.A, it is chambered for .222 Remington, 22 inch heavy barrel fitted with a sporting stock. It shoots sub MOA. Does any body have a Martini Henry Cadet in other calibers, I would be interested to hear your story or thoughts. I am thinking of purchasing another one and having it re chambered to either .357 or 32 Winchester Special.

Regards Outback Jack
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Re: Martini Henry Cadet

Postby Ohio3Wheels » 01 Sep 2020 08

Sounds like a nice rifle and a good plan. Were I in a position to do that I'd probably go with a 38-55 WCF. Since I had a Marlin rebored and chambered for it I've enjoyed working with it and it's deer legal here in Ohio.

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Re: Martini Henry Cadet

Postby Outback Jack » 01 Sep 2020 16

Thanks Ohio3Wheels,
I'm not familiar with the 38-55, I'll do some research, do you have any load data ?
regards Outback Jack.
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Re: Martini Henry Cadet

Postby Archer » 01 Sep 2020 20

Outback Jack wrote:Thanks Ohio3Wheels,
I'm not familiar with the 38-55, I'll do some research, do you have any load data ?
regards Outback Jack.


Think .375 Win with a slightly longer case and a lower pressure limit 'officially'.

viewtopic.php?f=17&t=6197
http://www.ranchdogoutdoors.com/Firearm ... oad_27.jpg

On the one hand I want a Win 94 in the caliber or .375 Win but on the other hand I don't need yet another caliber. (Like .405 Winchester in a 1895 Win for example...)
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Re: Martini Henry Cadet

Postby Ohio3Wheels » 02 Sep 2020 08

Outback Jack wrote:Thanks Ohio3Wheels,
I'm not familiar with the 38-55, I'll do some research, do you have any load data ?
regards Outback Jack.


There is some data loose in the "wild" as it were. My main load is a 200 grain Sierra JSP over H4198 at a little over 2000 fps. Right now that's the only jacketed bullet suitable for the 38-55 velocities everything else are made for the 375 Win or moving up the 375 H&H. I also cast the Lee 375 and purchase coated bullets in the 250 to 260 grain weight range also loaded with H4198 and pushing up close to the 2K speed range. My Marlin likes them and I'm comfortable in the woods with either the cast or jacket loads. As I said before (I think) it started life as a 336 30/30 that I had reworked to 38-55. I haven't tried it but I'm told you can fireforn 30/30 to 38-55 without a lot of fuss.

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Re: Martini Henry Cadet

Postby Archer » 03 Sep 2020 11

.38-55 isn't too hard to find data for. The funny thing is this caliber initially was issued by Ballard as a black powder round. Like everything else at the time it was chambered by Winchester, Marlin and others with them relabeling with the other gun manufactures names and later transitioned to smokeless powder so that now the round is known as .38-55 Winchester.

Lyman lists data for both the .38-55 and the .375 Winchester and cautions against using either in the other chamber citing incompatible neck diameters. (.377 or .378 for the .38-55 vs. .375 for the .375 Win)
Hodgdon powder manuals listed loads for both calibers and gave suggestions for using jacketed bullets available at the time of publication suitable for the .375 Win in the .38-55.

Hodgdon online data is available for both .38-55 and .375 (interestingly enough no data is provided for IMR or Winchester powders for either cartridge.)
https://www.hodgdonreloading.com/data/rifle

I think the old Accurate manual(s) and possibly the new Western powder manual that replaced it list the calibers but as my copies are on the back of a bookshelf in the closet I am not going to check right now. Since I'm on the computer I can say the 8th edition of the Western Powders PDF does NOT list either cartridge as far as I can tell. http://www.ramshot.com/wp-content/uploa ... .0_WEB.pdf

Sierra claims the .38-55 used a larger bullet diameter as well as a slightly longer case than the .375 and only lists data for the .375 Win.

Buffalo bore as I mentioned in the other thread offers .38-55 ammo and claims their ammo is safe for use in any Winchester 94 chambered in .38-55 or .375 Win last time I checked (this morning). It seems Buffalo Bore is now for the past year and a half or so manufacturing .355 Winchester ammo. They caution AGAINST using .375 ammo in the .38-55. (Note that they claim to get .375 Win velocities out of .38-55 loadings at pressures that are very much reduced from .375 operating pressures due to the difference in thickness of the brass allowing for additional powder volume and combustion volume. Those pressures look to be significantly higher the standard .38-55 pressures however so I personally would limit those loads to modern metallurgy weapons as BB indicates.)
https://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l ... list&c=175
https://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l ... tail&p=543
https://www.buffalobore.com/index.php?l ... tail&p=159

I more or less decided to stay away from both of these rounds unless a gun chambered for one of them more or less fell into my lap. Neither of these calibers is particularly easy to get ammo for at a retail outlet (particularly where I live and they've made mail order a pain) so unless you reload or you intend to lay in a significant supply for your needs I would not recommend them. Either of them should be reasonably easy to reload and components can be had. It would be worth reloading for them IMO just to make them more affordable and ensure a supply of ammo during times like these. I love the concept but I've already got too many different calibers I'm stocking ammo and reloading components to maintain.

I continue to find the cautions regarding diameter differences
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Re: Martini Henry Cadet

Postby Ohio3Wheels » 03 Sep 2020 15

I have been told that it is not unusual to fine older 38-55 rifle with large bores even as large as .380. Not so much on n,ewer manufacture rifle. Currently Henry lists their side loader in 38-55, no info on bore size.
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Re: Martini Henry Cadet

Postby Archer » 03 Sep 2020 17

Ohio3Wheels wrote:I have been told that it is not unusual to fine older 38-55 rifle with large bores even as large as .380. Not so much on n,ewer manufacture rifle. Currently Henry lists their side loader in 38-55, no info on bore size.


Buffalo Bore mentions that their .38-55 projectiles will swage down safely in the .375 Win AND that they bump up to the potentially larger bore diameter of the .38-55 that may be above spec so that they still get very good accuracy.

I would expect Henry to be on the money with regard to the spec vs the gun but there are still manufacturing tolerances and tool wear.
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Re: Martini Henry Cadet

Postby Missionary » 03 Sep 2020 20

We have a 1896 made model 1894 in 38-55 with a .383 groove and 386+ throat.
Newer rifles seem far more closer to what we think of as the proper diameters.
Way down south in Arequipa, Peru till June 2020.
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Re: Martini Henry Cadet

Postby jkramer357 » 26 Oct 2020 12

I have one in 22LR and it is accurate. 5 shot 1 hole groups at 25 yards using the factory aperture sight. My problem is that it shoots brst with some nearly 80 year old Winchester Western ammo, that I am nearly out of.
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