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I was going to get another redhawk in 5.5"(already have .454srh)but can't decide on caliber either 44mag
or 45LC.had a 44 redhawk and loved it,but 45LC would be easy since all .454 stuff would work with it .From what I see in load swap the .44 mag has a slight power advantage. How hot can a 45LC go
 

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I SHOULD NOT ANSWER THIS BUT I GOING TOO, IN THE REDHAWK THE 45 COLT WILL OUTPOWER THE 44 WITH EASE, WITH THE RIGHT LBT BULLET THE 45 CAN BE PUSHED CLOSE TO 454 PERFORMANCE. IE 325GR @1400 FPS + THE 45 WILL DO WHAT THE 44 WILL WITH LESS PRESSURE. I LOVE THEM BOTH. I AM NOT GOING TO SAY ANYMORE IN FEAR OF GETTIN EATIN ALIVE BY THE 44 BOYS.           JIM.
 

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I've shot the .44 mag since 1957 and have killed a ton of game with it, and still do.....but as real heavey weight handguns have come on the market in .45 Long Colt there has been a steady shift over it that caliber. A week on so ago, Sonnie and Linda Youngblood, owners of Manatee Sports in South Florida (one of the biggest down there) were up visiting. Since I like to keep up with buying trends, I ask about sales of .44 Mag Vs .45 LC.....They said the Ruger in .45 Long Colt sold 4 to 1 over the same in .44 Mag. Just what this shift means, I'm not sure since these are just general retail sales. It may be that the shooters can control the .45 LC more?
Best Regards, James
 

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Having shot, owned, and loaded for several different S&W's, Rugers, and Colts in each cartridge, I still prefer the .44 Magnum. Yes the .45 Colt has more potential power at the top, but to what end? It is no trouble at all to assemble .44s that will shoot through a bull elk, breaking both shoulders along the way. The .44 has brained African elephant in the hands of Larry Kelly, Lynn Thompson, and many others. What more could you want from a handgun cartridge?

At the opposite end of the ballistic spectrum, I've found it easier to create ultra-accurate medium loads in the Magnum than the Colt. Then there is also the added versatility in using the .44 Special as well.

This is not to say that the .45 Colt is a bad cartridge. Far from it. I hope when I'm as old as it I'm going as strong! I just think the .44 Magnum is an awfully hard act to follow.

But really it's all a moot point, as everyone knows the .41 Magnum is the best bigbore handgun cartridge.

:biggrin:


(Edited by Bill Lester at 5:10 pm on May 16, 2001)
 

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My 2 cents -
I have shot a .44 for many years and I love it. I think the .454 has gotten a lot of press and people want to shoot it in a single action. They can't afford a Freedom Arms or acustom gun so they buy a blackhawk in .45 lc and hot-rod it. Thank Bill Ruger for making the strength of gun he does. That's all that keeps people from blowing themselves up. Now if he would just make a .454  5 shot single action!

As to .44 or .45 - Ford or Chevy in either case the critter won't tell the difference in what hit them.
 

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I just got back into town and can't resist the urge to "jump in" to the string.  So far I have resisted leaving my 44 mags for the 45 Colt.  It is not because I find anything wrong with the 45 Colt.  What I can't find is where it does anything better.  I know these are fight'n words but hear me out.

Most reloading manuals that show data for the 44mag and 45 Colt +P show effectively identical velocites.  The 45 Colt does it with less pressure in identical guns.  Of course that's because the handgun has bigger holes in the cylinder and barrel with less surrounding metal.  All things being equal, the 45 Colt handgun simply will not take the same pressures.  Nothing wrong here, just parity with the same design and weight bullets.  When you step up to the Ruger Redhawks and Super Redhawks you get a big strength gain in both 44 mag and 45 Colt.  The 44 mag is still the stronger and the 45 Colt still does the same work with less pressure.  It was mentioned that the 45 Colt in a Redhawk will give 1400 fps with a 325 gr bullet.  The Redhawk will in 44 mag will do the same and more (I presume Jim was quoting a safe working load rather than a max load, just as I am). These are velocities over my chrono.   I have read with the author's great excitement that a 45 Colt will give 1500 fps with a 300 gr bullet.  In identical guns, the same is true of the 44 mag with the same style bullet.  

Though I do not see it on this wonderful forum, I have often seen writers compare their very custom 45 colts to very standard 44 mags.  It makes for big differences but the examples are built more on deceit than truth.  It's like comparing a stock car engine to one that has been blueprinted and runs custom pistons and timing.  If you take a custom 6 shot SBH in 45 Colt and the SAME gun  but in 44 mag, what performance level to you think you'll get.  Right,  the same performance.  I think the 45 Colt handles 350gr bullets better than the 44 mag but it appears the 44 mag handles 300 gr bullets better than the 45 Colt.  We are splitting hairs really.

When you go to 5 shot custom handguns, the story is the same.  The 44 mag can run at higher pressures because it is stronger.  The 45 Colt can do the same thing with less pressure... and it must do it with less pressure.  

For hunting big critters, the 45 Colt has a nice increase in melplat.  For hunting big critters, the 44 mag has a nice increase in sectional density.  As it has been pointed  out already, both have been well proven on big game around the world.  

I wish the 45 Colt had a big advantage over the 44 mag.  It's always fun to play with a newer and bigger toy.  When we keep the conversation to apples to apples, I can find no effective difference in the two.  Near as I can tell, the increased effeciency of the 45 Colt is pretty well matched by the increased strength of 44 mag handguns of identical make/mods.  There are certainly more subjective differences that are individual among each of us but that is true with everything.  

Both are versatile.  Both get the job done.  Match the bullets and handguns and the differences are too close to call.  

Just my 2 cents worth

God bless......................  Bill M
 

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The key here is this.  Given the same bullet weight, the 45 Colt does the same thing with lower pressure.  Lower pressure means less stress on the gun and the shooter through less recoil.  Which would you rather shoot, a gun that kicks like a mule, or one that does the same thing, and in some cases, more, with less kick?
 

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Given the same bullet weight, the 45 Colt does the same thing with lower pressure

Assuming you can hit the same velocity. I've put an untold number of [email protected]+ and 300 and  330s @1500~1550fps thru a 44 SuperRedhawk. That > .01 inch of extra metal make a big difference (as does the long cylinder)

Its funny how the same pundents of the "lower pressure" crowd are also the same that graduate to the 475 or 5shot 45s(both of which are of much higher pressure).  Why have they all of a sudden decided the the pressures are no longer a problem ( even though the same frames are used?<!--emo&???--><img src="http://beartoothbullets.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/confused.gif" border="0" valign="absmiddle" alt='???'><!--endemo-->)


Lower pressure means less stress on the gun and the shooter through less recoil.  
Do you think that a frame that can withstand a hot 475 will have a problem with a 44mag?    

The 44 only has 8% more thrust at Pmax than the warm 45 so we aren't talking a whole bunch of difference.
Anyways, how many people do you know that have shot the barrel out of a Ruger 44mag or streched the frame?



If you want a performance oriented 45, get a 454.

If you want 44mag performance, get a 44 not a 45.  

If you are asking the question of what is better then get the 44. The fact that one is asking the question in the first place tells me that they are "newbies" in a sense and would be better served by a round that can be easily found on the store shelf and cheaply reloaded.

There are no merits in discussing the ballistics or pressure of a hot 45 and the 44Mag.  A 44 can be loaded hot too!


-CAL
 

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Hey CAL,

You are da man. I could not have said it any better. I am referring to the pressure issue that you said from your post.  

I currently own a 44, 454, and soon a 475 Linebaugh and 500 Linebaugh Max and still don't understand why would anyone want a hot rod 45 LC while a 454 can be had with a much better performance. Good shooting people.

Cheers!
Ming
 

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Ok, here's my 2 cents worth from the peanut gallery.  My next Ruger Blackhawk will be a 5.5" 45LC. I will not be loading it for T-Rex, but the handloads will be somewhat warmed over.  Absolutely nothing wrong with the 44 Mag. I just prefer the 45LC for more than adequate big-bore performance (bigger hole, more lead, lower pressure, ad nauseum).  No need for a 5-shot conversion or 454 Casull/475 Linebaugh performance when all I will hunt with it is whitetails and maybe a black bear someday.

But as Bill Lester eloquaintly stated:   "But really it's all a moot point, as everyone knows the .41 Magnum is the best bigbore handgun cartridge. "




(Edited by BlackHawk1 at 11:11 am on May 27, 2001)
 

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Blackhawk 1,

I was wondering if anyone noticed that! Even though I've owned, shot, experimented with, and greatly enjoyed a bunch of .44 Magnums and .45 Colts, I still like the .41 best. My uses parallel yours- whitetails and black bear. To me the .41 is more than enough for either. Plus a bit more gentle and cheap to shoot compared to the .44 and .45.
 

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Bill Lester,

I have a very soft spot in my heart for the most under-rated magnum.  It was the right cartridge at the wrong time. While it's not as potent as it's bigger breatheren, it stands on its own merits, it really can't be compared to a .44 Mag or a .45LC, it has it's own niche.  As you stated, a bit less recoil, a bit more frugal, and a bit flatter shooting.

There are a few of us .41 afficienados around, .41fan, Contender, you, and myself.  I have a 6.5" Blackhawk and a 14" T/C Contender barrel, both in .41 Mag.  What iron do you shoot?  
 

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At the present I am 41-less. Due to some tough economic times a few years back I had to sell most of my guns. I was down to one .357. I've only been able to begin rebuilding the last two years. When I do get another .41 I have about 1200-1500 assorted handloads ready to go. But in the good old days I owned two S&W Model 657's, a fixed-sight Model 58, a Ruger Blackhawk and Redhawk, and GULP... I hate to admit I got rid of it... a Marlin 1894. To replace that one will be both a chore to find and at a premium once located.
 

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This is kind of interesting, we start out with the 45 Colt/44 Mag discussion and end up on the 41 Mag, which is, as stated earlier, the best of the bunch. I'm getting ready to wring out identical Rewhawks in 44 Mag. & 45 Colt, to compare them as fairly as possible. My first impression is that it really doesn't matter that the Colt operates at lower pressures than the 44, as long as the pressures are within the revolvers tolerances. I'm testing 310 (nominal) grain cast bullets, cast at the same time, alternately from the same batch of alloy. Powder will be from the same lot, as will primers. The only difference I really expect to find, is that the 45 makes a little bigger hole in the target. I doubt it will be a significant advantage. All my Redhawks (the 41 is a Redhawk too, but with a 5.5 in barrel), are capable of completely penetrating a deer, sideways of course, at 50 yards+. A bigger bullet won't help anyway, if you blow the shot.---------------------Bob
 

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Pourboy...You are right on! The discussion of the .44 mag Vs the .45 Long Colt could, and will, go on forever! I also am fond of the .41 Mag! Any of the three, properly loaded is going to kill anything within reason graveyard dead! It it's too big for these three, one would be better with a long gun.It's beyond me why anyone would want to shoot handgun bigger than these three? I think when you get through with your tests....It's going to show that bottom line is which you just happen to like best.
Best Regards, James
 

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Contender...Equals two words...Dead Meat!
Best Regards, James
 

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Contender,

Anxiously awaiting!

As James so succintly puts it, if any of the three can't get the job done you really should use a rifle or slug gun. For me the big Linebaughs, .454 and such are too much pistol. They are best suited to big, dangerous game. For me I'd be better armed with a long gun that I can shoot with greater precision, faster recoil recovery, and more power if needed. Now that's not to say anyone who shoots a .454, .475, etc. is a fool.
 
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