.45 Colt v .44 Mag


PDA
7.62mmFMJ
11-25-2005, 10:47 PM
Why I went the .44 Mag route. ALthough there is just something about the .45 Colt that really intrigues me.

Compared: The .44 Magnum and .45 Colt

By Chuck Hawks


This comparison article is about the .44 Remington Magnum and .45 Long Colt. It was brought about the volume of e-mail I have received on the subject. I would like to mention at the outset that I handload for and shoot both calibers, and that I own what I regard as being among the very best revolvers available in each caliber, both with 7.5" barrels and fully adjustable sights. So I have bet on both horses, so to speak, and win however this comparison comes out.

The .44 Magnum revolver cartridge was introduced in 1956 as a result of well publicized experiments with high pressure .44 Special loads. It uses a lengthened version of the .44 Special case and accepts the same .429" diameter bullets. The .44 Magnum was designed as a hunting cartridge for sportsmen, and for quite a while it was the most powerful factory loaded handgun cartridge.

The original Remington factory loads advertised a 240 grain SWC lead bullet at a muzzle velocity (MV) of 1470 fps and muzzle energy (ME) of 1120 ft. lbs., measured in a 6.5" barrel. The SAAMI maximum average pressure (MAP) for the .44 Remington Magnum is 36,000 psi (or 40,000 cup). Leading proved to be a problem at such velocities with cast bullets, just as it had previously with the .357 Magnum, and jacketed bullets were soon introduced to solve the problem.

The .44 Magnum generates too much recoil and muzzle blast for the majority of shooters (although few will admit it). Only those skilled in the use of powerful handguns can shoot well enough with a .44 Magnum revolver to justify hunting with one. Most handgun hunters would be better off with a less powerful cartridge. For those who can handle it, the big .44 is a fine deer and black bear cartridge at typical handgun ranges.

Smith & Wesson and Ruger were the original manufacturers of .44 Magnum revolvers, although Colt, Freedom Arms, Taurus, and others now also offer .44 Magnums. It is also a popular choice in T/C single shot pistols. One advantage to the .44 Magnum is that low power .44 Special loads may be used for plinking and target shooting.

The .45 Colt (or .45 Long Colt) cartridge was introduced in 1873 in the Colt Single Action Army revolver. It was adopted as the service cartridge of the U.S. Army, and widely used by civilians on the Western frontier. The .45 Colt became a big commercial success and most revolver makers with a large frame gun have chambered for it at one time or another.

This famous man-stopping cartridge was designed for black powder, a relatively inefficient propellant, and consequently has excess capacity for smokeless powders. That is why the much smaller .45 ACP can nearly duplicate the performance of the much bigger .45 Colt if pressures are kept within SAAMI limits. Traditional factory loads for the .45 Colt drive a 250 grain lead bullet at a MV of about 860 fps and ME of 410 ft. lbs., measured in a 6.5" vented (revolver) barrel. The 100 yard numbers are 780 fps and 340 ft. lbs. These are Remington figures, and it is worth noting that they are about like those produced by the modern .40 S&W auto pistol cartridge, which is supposed to be one of the best "stoppers" on the market.

The SAAMI maximum average pressure for the .45 Colt is 14,000 psi. The .45's big case, which actually has somewhat greater capacity than the .44 Magnum case, is also why so many shooters/reloaders have (falsely) assumed that it can safely be "magnumized." But this is not the case, as the big .45's pressure limit is nowhere near magnum levels.

The vast majority of revolvers chambered for the .45 Colt over the years are simply not strong enough for safe use with high pressure loads. This specifically includes the Colt SAA, Colt, Taurus, and S&W double-action revolvers, and all of the "Peacemaker" replicas so common today. There is one commercially manufactured .45 Colt revolver that can safely stand higher than normal pressure reloads, and that is the Ruger Blackhawk/Vaquero. (The Vaquero is a Blackhawk without adjustable sights.) The T/C Contender single shot pistol is also safe with higher than normal pressure reloads.

What is a reasonable pressure limit for .45 Colt caliber Ruger Blackhawk and T/C Contender pistols? Some loads listed in the Speer Reloading Manual Number 13 specifically for these guns generate pressures up to 25,000 cup. Speer emphatically states that these loads must not be used in any other make and model of .45 Colt pistol, and advises shooters that if more power is desired they should purchase a gun chambered for the .44 Magnum or .454 Casull. That seems like sensible advice to me, so the Speer Blackhawk/Contender loads will be the benchmark used in this article for over-pressure .45 Colt loads. (For more on the subject of high pressure .45 Colt loads, see my article "High Pressure Loads for the .45 Colt.")

At present, the Speer Gold Dot .44 Magnum factory load shows a 240 grain JHP bullet at a MV of 1400 fps with ME of 1044 ft. lbs. The figures at 100 yards are 1139 fps and 691 ft. lbs. Speer factory ballistics were measured from a 6.5" vented (revolver) barrel.

Speer offers a Blazer .45 Colt load with a 200 grain FMJ bullet. This bullet leaves the muzzle at 1000 fps with 444 ft. lbs. of energy. At 100 yards it is still traveling at 889 fps and carrying 351 ft. lbs. of energy. This is an interesting alternative to the traditional 250 grain lead RN bullet.

The .44 Magnum's bullet has an actual diameter of .429" while the .45 Colt's bullet has an actual diameter of .452". This gives the .44 Magnum a modest advantage in sectional density and the .45 Colt a modest advantage in bullet frontal area with any given bullet weight. In most circumstances the two factors probably balance out.

Any comparison of factory load ballistics, regardless of bullet weight, is going to be very one sided in favor of the .44 Magnum. The .44 Mag. simply operates at a much higher permissible pressure. Comparing the Speer Gold Dot 240 grain .44 Magnum load to the Remington 250 grain .45 Colt load, the .44 Magnum has a 540 fps advantage in muzzle velocity, a 634 ft. lb. advantage in muzzle energy, and a much flatter trajectory. There can be no doubt that, as a big game hunting cartridge the .44 Magnum is clearly superior.

Now, using the Speer Reloading Manual Number 13 as our reference, let's compare the .44 Magnum and .45 Colt with handloads developed for a Ruger Blackhawk revolver with a 7.5" barrel. 225 grain JHP bullets are available from Speer in both calibers, and are very effective for deer size game, so that is a convenient bullet weight to compare. The top maximum load for the .44 Magnum drives a 225 grain bullet (BC .146, SD .175) at a MV of 1557 fps. The top maximum load for the .45 Colt drives a 225 grain bullet (BC .169, SD .169) at a MV of 1343 fps.

For convenience, let's round those numbers down to a realistic 1500 fps and 1300 fps respectively so that we can compare them using the Speer ballistic tables. At a MV of 1500 fps the .44 Mag. has ME of 1125 ft. lbs. and the remaining energy at 100 yards is 650 ft. lbs. The trajectory of the .44 Mag. bullet looks like this: +1.8" at 50 yards, 0 at 100 yards, and -8.5" at 150 yards.

At a MV of 1300 fps the .45 Colt has ME of 844 ft. lbs. and the remaining energy at 100 yards is 560 ft. lbs. The trajectory of the .45 Colt bullet looks like this: +2.5" at 50 yards, 0 at 100 yards, and -10.2" at 150 yards.

Both the standard pressure .44 Magnum load and the high pressure .45 Colt load should be deadly on deer and other medium size big game animals at 100 yards. After all, the .44-40 rifle bullet, one of the most successful deer cartridges in history, develops only 449 ft. lbs. of energy at 100 yards. But the .44 Magnum does, undeniably, have the advantage over the .45 Colt high pressure load.

In fact, as a deer cartridge, the .45 Colt is actually more comparable in power to the .41 Magnum than the .44 Magnum. Both can drive a 220-225 grain bullet at a MV of about 1350 fps.

Want to compare bullets of similar sectional density? That is probably the most accurate way to compare hunting cartridges. The 270 grain Speer JHP bullet for the .44 Magnum has a SD of .210, and the 300 grain Speer JHP bullet for the .45 Colt has a SD of .211, a nearly perfect comparison. These bullets are probably too heavy for the quickest kills on deer size game, but might be a good choice for large game or protection against large predators when hiking or fishing. The top maximum load for the 270 grain .44 bullet has a MV of 1309 fps. The top maximum load for the 300 grain .45 bullet has a MV of 1193 fps.

Again, so that we can use the Speer ballistic tables, let's round the .44 Magnum load down a few fps to a MV of 1300 fps and the .45 Colt load up a few fps to a MV of 1200 fps. At a MV of 1300 fps the 270 grain .44 Mag. bullet has ME of 1012 ft. lbs. and the remaining energy at 100 yards is 707 ft. lbs. The trajectory of the 270 grain .44 Mag. bullet looks like this: +2.4" at 50 yards, 0 at 100 yards, and -9.7" at 150 yards.

At a MV of 1200 fps the 300 grain .45 Colt bullet has ME of 960 ft. lbs. and the remaining energy at 100 yards is 708 ft. lbs. (nearly identical to the energy of the .44 Mag.) The trajectory of the 300 grain .45 Colt bullet looks like this: +2.8" at 50 yards, 0 at 100 yards, and -11" at 150 yards.

With such heavy bullets the greater case capacity of the .45 Colt allows it to almost catch up with the .44 Magnum. It doesn't shoot as flat, and it has slightly less energy out to 100 yards (surely as far as anyone should shoot at large animals with a handgun), but the difference is not enough to worry about. Of course, with such loads the .45 Colt kicks like a .44 Magnum.

Lower recoil is the .45 Colt's biggest advantage over the .44 Magnum when shooting factory loads or standard pressure handloads. Shooting standard .45 Colt factory loads or, in the case of the .44 Mag, shooting .44 Special factory loads or low power handloads, both calibers are reasonably pleasant to shoot. The "Handgun Recoil Table" on my Handgun Information Page shows that full power .44 Magnum loads or the kind of heavy bullet, high pressure .45 Colt loads discussed in the paragraphs above generate recoil numbers of 22.6 and 23.9 ft. lbs. respectively. Such loads are unpleasant for almost all shooters.

Factory loaded ammunition for both the .44 Magnum and .45 Colt is widely distributed in the U.S., but by no means inexpensive. The same could be said for the handguns chambered for the two cartridges, which in many cases are the same or similar models. In availability and price of both ammunition and guns there is little to choose between the .44 Magnum and .45 Colt.

Both the .44 Magnum and .45 Colt cartridges are a straight forward proposition for the reloader. Common jacketed bullet weights for the .45 Colt run from about 200 grains to 300 grains. For the .44 Magnum jacketed bullets span the range from about 180 to 300 grains. Cast lead bullets run up to about 300 grains for either caliber. The reloader can essentially duplicate the factory loaded velocities of both calibers, and substantially exceed them if he or she happens to be reloading for a Ruger Blackhawk revolver or T/C single shot pistol in .45 Colt. Both cartridges can also be loaded down for small game hunting, plinking, and target shooting. But, when push comes to shove, the 40,000 cup pressure limit of the .44 Magnum, even compared to high pressure 25,000 cup .45 Colt loads, makes it a more versatile big game hunting cartridge for which to reload.

Lastly, it is hard not to mention accuracy when comparing these two calibers, something I don't usually bring up when comparing cartridges. But the .44 Magnum has always had a sterling reputation as an ultra-accurate hunting cartridge. No doubt this is because for most of its life it has been loaded with the extra care due its high operating pressure and the fact that most .44 Magnum revolvers are top of the line guns. The Colt Anaconda, Ruger Super Blackhawk, and S&W Model 29 are examples of such revolvers.

On the other hand, the .45 Colt has always had a reputation for indifferent accuracy. No doubt this is partly because it is such an old cartridge and different manufacturers have used different specifications for chamber, bore, and bullet diameters over the years. Also, the .45 Colt dates back to a time when it was impossible to mass produce guns (or anything else) to the manufacturing tolerances possible today. And, lastly, the .45 Colt has been primarily a self defense cartridge, and the accuracy standards for such are never as high as for hunting or target cartridges. (They simply don't need to be.) As a point in fact, my Colt SAA revolver will shoot better groups than most brand new semi-automatic pistols chambered for the .45 ACP or .40 S&W cartridges. So, compared to other self defense cartridges and pistols, the old .45 Colt is more than adequately accurate, and better than average.

However, in the main, .44 Magnum revolvers and loads are not intended for self defense. They are mostly target revolvers and hunting loads, which are generally produced to a higher standard. Since we are specifically comparing the .45 Colt to the .44 Magnum, I think it is fair to point out that, on average, .44 Magnum revolvers and .44 Magnum factory loaded ammunition are generally more accurate than .45 Colt revolvers and .45 Colt factory loaded ammunition.

To summarize, today the primary appeal of both the .44 Mag. and .45 Colt is to the recreational shooter and hunter. Ammunition and guns for both calibers are widely available, although fairly expensive. In this area there is little to choose between the two. Both cartridges are easy to reload, but the .44 Magnum is the more versatile cartridge for the reloader.

The .45's biggest advantage is that it usually kicks less than the .44 Mag. It is definitely more fun to shoot with standard pressure loads.

As a defensive pistol cartridge, which is what the old .45 Colt was designed for, it is still a fine load. It is adequately powerful for almost any circumstance without the horrific muzzle blast and recoil generated by a .44 Magnum. On balance it is the better choice for its original purpose.

However, the .44 Magnum is the generally superior big game hunting cartridge. Its accuracy and performance are beyond question. It deserves its reputation as perhaps the premier handgun hunting cartridge, a reputation that was won in the field.

(For those interested in more information about the .44 Magnum and .45 Colt, there are articles about each on the Handgun Information Page.)

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budroe
11-26-2005, 06:18 PM
I don't have a dog in this fight; I have both calibers and enjoy shooting both!!!

si6
11-26-2005, 07:41 PM
I still like my .44 Maggggnummmmm :D
Its a proven deer stopper www.familyfriendsfirearms.com/forum/showthread.php?t=42263

Popeye
11-26-2005, 09:47 PM
Cor-Bon loads a .45 Colt round, 335 gr hardcast projectile at 1100 fps from a 9.5" barreled Super Blackhawk. I don't care who you are, that's a serious BIG game hunting load.

Sir Knight
11-26-2005, 10:29 PM
Cor-Bon loads a .45 Colt round, 335 gr hardcast projectile at 1100 fps from a 9.5" barreled Super Blackhawk. I don't care who you are, that's a serious BIG game hunting load. ... and a gun chambered for the .454 should be able to handle such a load without any problems.

Popeye
11-26-2005, 11:21 PM
.454 Casull is a different matter entirely. Its much faster and operates at higher pressures than any .45 Colt.

Sir Knight
11-27-2005, 06:14 AM
So a gun built to handle a .454 Casull should be able to handle a "hot" .45 Colt load without any problems, right?

Popeye
11-27-2005, 02:26 PM
Right!

Vern Humphrey
11-27-2005, 04:43 PM
With all due respect to Chuck, he tends to "cherry pick" his data.

Now, using the Speer Reloading Manual Number 13 as our reference, let's compare the .44 Magnum and .45 Colt with handloads developed for a Ruger Blackhawk revolver with a 7.5" barrel. 225 grain JHP bullets are available from Speer in both calibers, and are very effective for deer size game, so that is a convenient bullet weight to compare. The top maximum load for the .44 Magnum drives a 225 grain bullet (BC .146, SD .175) at a MV of 1557 fps. The top maximum load for the .45 Colt drives a 225 grain bullet (BC .169, SD .169) at a MV of 1343 fps. (my emphasis.)


If you go to the Hodgdon manual, you see a load for the 300 grain bullet in the .45 Colt at 1330 fps. That's a big difference compared to a 225 grain bullet at that velocity!

Hot .45 Colts (safe in the Ruger Blackhawk) will shade the .44 Magnum as you increase bullet weight.

I would say a fair and unbiased verdict would be "There is no significant difference between the .44 Magnum and the .45 Colt, when loaded hot in Ruger Blackhawks."

Mike Weber
11-27-2005, 04:57 PM
I would say a fair and unbiased verdict would be "There is no significant difference between the .44 Magnum and the .45 Colt, when loaded hot in Ruger Blackhawks."

I would agree. In fact I have a particular handload that is pushing a gas checked hard cast 300 gr RNFP bullet out of my 71/2 barreled Ruger New Model Blackhawk at 1300 fps.
More than enough "Punch" for medium big game hunting applications.

KMDO
02-12-2007, 09:40 PM
The 45 colt can do everything the 44 can do with a shorter barrel and less pressure.

One small problem on the initial post is stating that colt dbl action revolvers can not handle high pressure, which is in error I believe. The Colt Anaconda can handle hot loads IIRC.

Looking at a 4Th Ed. hornady reloading manual (the hottest load data ive seen on 45 colt)

It has the 45 Colt with 300gr XTP @ 1300 FPS w/ 7.5" barrel.
It has the 44 Mag with 300g XTP @ 1250FPS w/ 7.5" barrel.

The pressure in the 44 would be around 35,100
The pressure in the 45 would be around 32,000

I dont see the exact pressure in the hornady book but from
john linebaughs site and my hodgdon reloading manual Ive estimated
for these xtp's.

retiredsquid
02-13-2007, 05:29 PM
If I didn't own nearly a baker's dozen .44 Rem Mags and had started out with a .45 Colt in the Ruger flavor I doubt if I would have ever bought a .44 Rem Mag. I do not own any .45 Colts as a result, but feel the .45 Colt is a superb round in the correct firearms. Being a handloader it is a toss up IMO.
Regards,
Rich

Mike Weber
02-13-2007, 05:44 PM
I've owned both .44 Mags and .45 Colts My .44 Mags were Rugers and S&W's
while my.45 Colts have ranged from original Colt SAA's to Uberti clones Ruger Vaquero's and Blackhawks and Clones of Remington revolvers I prefer the .45 Colt over the .44 Mag.

MUTT
03-09-2007, 10:41 PM
I too prefer the .45 Colt over the .44 mag. And it has proved to be an excellent self protection piece in my Colt SAA. s .I also have a Colt SAA in .357 which is no slouch either.
MUTT

Dframe
03-10-2007, 08:53 AM
Both are excellent rounds. But why push the old 45 colt to borderline unsafe pressures just to try and equal the ballistics of the 44? Yes under the right circumstances you can do it, but WHY? If you really need the extra pressure and velocity just get a 44. I own and like both but don't hot rod my 45's

budroe
03-10-2007, 10:02 AM
Actually in today's revolvers you're not pushing the .45 Colt to unsafe pressures. I've always been told (and have assumed) that you have to be very careful about hot handloading .45 Colt rounds for the S&W 25-5. There's an article by John Linebaugh (a very respected custom gunsmith) posted on sixgunner.com that plainly states the S&W 25-5 will take a lot of hot loads with no pressure problems (I'll try to steal a copy of the article and post it here). Linebaugh is one of the men whose word I'll take on this subject. For the most part I see no reason to hotload a 25-5, but it does change my mind about the kind of capability these great revolvers have.

Vern Humphrey
03-10-2007, 10:39 AM
Both are excellent rounds. But why push the old 45 colt to borderline unsafe pressures just to try and equal the ballistics of the 44? Yes under the right circumstances you can do it, but WHY? If you really need the extra pressure and velocity just get a 44. I own and like both but don't hot rod my 45's

With the Blackhawk, you're not pushing the Colt to unsafe pressures. Blackhawks have been tested to destruction and at 32,000 psi, the Blackhawk in .45 Colt has as much safety margin as it does with full charge .44 Magnum loads.

Because the early SAAs were made of wrought-iron and had the cylinder stop notches cut in the thinnest part of the chamber wall, the .45 Colt is loaded waaaaaay down -- lest one of these old guns disassemble itself. But by no means all pistols chambered for the .45 Colt are so weak. I have a Colt New Service, which has a heat-treated cylinder and the cylinder stop notches cut off-center. I don't hotrod that gun, but it will take a lot more than the old SAA.

budroe
03-10-2007, 10:43 AM
Here's where to access the Linebaugh article. Sorry, I can't get the link to work, but you can type it in.

http://www.handloads.com/articles/default.asp?id=12

Popeye
03-10-2007, 10:54 AM
The link works for me.

OFallon
03-10-2007, 12:11 PM
The .45lc is the choice for me. :D

malibuman
03-10-2007, 01:19 PM
My buddy is starting to reload .45 Colt for his Stampede and Thunderbolt. Does anyone have any knowable of how strong the Beretta Stampede is and what kind of loads it can handle?



Cord

ExSniper
03-10-2007, 10:29 PM
My buddy is starting to reload .45 Colt for his Stampede and Thunderbolt. Does anyone have any knowable of how strong the Beretta Stampede is and what kind of loads it can handle?



Cord
It is a Cowboy Action gun for Cowboy Action loads. Should handle most commercial .45 Colt loads, not the hot handloads designed for Rugers and larger pistols.

Popeye
03-10-2007, 11:56 PM
Mr. Linebaugh knows his handguns and handgun loads. He is one of the best alive, in his chosen field.

That being said, I will not shoot hot and heavy .44 Magnum loads out of an N frame S&W revolver. I have seen the results of doing so.

malibuman
03-13-2007, 03:17 PM
It is a Cowboy Action gun for Cowboy Action loads. Should handle most commercial .45 Colt loads, not the hot handloads designed for Rugers and larger pistols.

Thank you Sniper


Cord

maxiball
04-13-2008, 08:01 AM
Both are excellent rounds. But why push the old 45 colt to borderline unsafe pressures just to try and equal the ballistics of the 44? Yes under the right circumstances you can do it, but WHY? If you really need the extra pressure and velocity just get a 44. I own and like both but don't hot rod my 45's

I respectfully disagree.
The .45 Colt will perform as well as the .44 magnum and do it with less pressure.
Some say the .45 Colt will outperform the .44 magnum and do it with less pressure.
Of course the quality of the firearm wrapped around the cartridge is the key element.
So is using good brass.
I use Starline brass in my rather warm .45 Colt loads.
I adhere to published data for the Ruger Colts and the T/C break in the middle guns.
Last week Chrissy and I were shooting the .45 Colt Vaquero and I dug out a box of way too much load for the Vaquero.
Not that the Vaquero won't digest the loads, the fact is I wont'!
Those 265 grain LBT over a cup and a half of WW 296 were put together for my Bisley Blackhawk.
The Vaquero flat out bit me with those loads. Chrissy wouldn't shoot them and I agreed she should not. No sense scaring a new shooter with wrist breakers.
Besides. I was afraid she would loose the gun under recoil and the fine little Vaquero would go spinning off through the woods.:(
With 250 grain bullets and sane loads pushing the bullet at under 1000 f.p.s the .45 Colt is a fun shooter as well as a good stopper.
I feel that comparing the .45 Colt in modern guns to the .44 magnum is like comparing apples to apples.
There just ain't much difference between the two.
The .45 Colt does have one serious advantage over the .44 magnum though.
It's a .45 Colt with all the appeal, nostalgia, and history that is to be appreciated.
:D :D
But then I still think the 30-30 is king of the deer cartridges and the .45-70 flat out rocks.:up:

Hammerdown
04-13-2008, 09:27 AM
I don't have a dog in this fight; I have both calibers and enjoy shooting both!!!


Hello
I am with member Budroe on this as well. Both are Great calibers but Meant to do Very Different Jobs. The .44 Magnum is a Hard Core Magum round, and the .45 Colt is Meant to be kind of like a slow Moving Locomotive, in the fact it is Powerfull, destructive, and leaves behind a very large hole, but leaves the shooter with a Pleseant experience of shooting it without tearing your Arm off from the Wicked recoil provided by the .44 Magnum. Where some guys run into trouble is, when they Take the .45 Colt Cartridge and attempt to make it into a Magnum. It was NOT Intended for this, and Often Taking the round up to a Magnum level only ruins the revolver it is shot in and it Can Seriously injure the shooter if hand Loaded way beyond it's expectations...:( Hammerdown

kyshooter
04-13-2008, 10:51 AM
45 LC for me. I've put some pretty stiff loads through my blackhawk but now only use 9.6 gr of unique over a cast bullet. The bullet I've settled on is a LEE 260 RF, thats what it weighs using WWs. No need to overload a good accurate round. Power and velocity are wasted on a missed target or animal. I enjoy shooting a round over 100 years old, just like my 4570. POWDERMAN. :up: :up:

Nathan C Lewis
04-13-2008, 11:08 AM
I own one gun in 45 Colt, and it will probably be the only one I will ever own:D, nothing really against the round but there are better more modern rounds. The 44 mag to me is the ideal revolver round:up: Nate

Vern Humphrey
04-13-2008, 02:41 PM
If the .45 Colt has a disasvantage, it's that there are relatively fewer gas-check moulds available for it. For top performance with heavy loads, a gas-check is a necessity.

StrawHat
04-14-2008, 05:33 PM
I am not sure what you consider top performance loads but I have just gotten a new mold that casts a +/- 280 grain SWC.

Prior to this mold I used the Lyman 454424 anad the Lyman 452490 (both +\- 255 grain SWC).

Either one over a full case of FFg or FFFg, easily breaks both shoulders of a whitetail and keeps going. Mine are cast 20-1 (Lb-Sn).

It might be an old fashioned load but I think that is top load performance.

At lower pressure and less strain on the revolver, brass and shooter.

Can't wait to see what the 280 can do!

Rupe
05-07-2008, 12:00 PM
I go alittle off topic, but I come back to it toward the end. Bear with me.

I love both the .44mag and the .45LC. I have owned both but I choose the .44mag because Ruger doesn't make the Super Blackhawk in .454 Casull. If they had I would have gone that route. I love single actions. I tried the Super Redhawk in .454 but I just don't like DA's so I had to drop down to the .44mag. Now, because I can still shoot .45LC's in the .454 made the the gun more useful for plinking or hunting. I could shoot the .45LC's all day long and not be wore out. Or I could shoot full house .454's and stop after a couple of handfuls of ammo. If Ruger would make the Super Blackhawk in .454 I would get one and go back to the .45LC.
I carried the S&W 25-5 as a City cop so I bet my life on that handgun. I never had any doubt that I would stop a badguy with that big .45LC coming out of the end of that 4" barrel. It was very easy to control and I could take the same handgun out and hunt deer with it and was not undergunned. I love my .44mag as well and it can do anything as well depending on how you load it. I think the two Calibers are so close to what they can do there really isn't a big differance in them. They are both GREAT!

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