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Discussion Starter #1
For all you Ruger .454 owners out there who find that your cases stick even with factory loads, the answer is in the October issue of "Handloader." In short, live with it. Too long to go into all the details, but the problem is while the steel is strong enough, the steel Ruger uses is elastic and stretches at the 60,000-65,000 PSI range the .454 operates. The brass case stretches with the steel, the steel snaps back and the brass is now tight. The solution? None really. They said return it to Ruger and they will polish the chambers, but it will likely make little difference. Other fix, use cast bullets, reduce loads, or in my opinion, sell it and get a FA. If you are going to have to download your Ruger, what's the point? You might want to invest in a copy of the magazine to read more about it. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.
 

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Wrong Forum?

I believe this thread would be more appropriate in the Humor section.
Do people still believe everything they read in Gun Rags?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
In certain ones yes. I have relatively good faith in Rifle and Handloader, as well as GT, but not ST or G&A. It's the best expanation I've heard. Don't want to believe it, I couldn't care less. I don't have that problem in my FA but I sure see a lot of people posting with extraction problems with the Ruger. Something is causing it and if it is not overloads, underloads and dirty chambers, rough chambers, then what? I always want to learn so if you have a better explanation for all those Ruger owners with extraction problems, I'm sure they, and I, would like to hear it.
 

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Big bore
I've had my SRH 454 for about 3 years now. The only time I've had brass stick was with the Lot 99 Hornandy 300 gr loads!! And I've shot a whole bunch of heavy loads through mine with those same Hornady brass/FA brass/Win brass. My MHO those rounds were loaded to hot! Period. Or the powder they used Pressure spiked causing the cases to stick. I even took some of them apart and weight the charge 30.5 gr of what ever powder it was -looked like H110? Reloaded those same loads with 30.5 gr H110 and the same bullet -didn't stick!!
My loads chrono'd at 1620 Fps-this is not a Max load according to Speer man # 13 but seems to be the max for my SRH- accuracy goes to H*ll, if I push them anymore! The Hornady factory lot 99's came out at 1660 fps !

P.S For the extra money you spend for your FA I'll keep my SRH at least Ruger will fix any problems that arise or replace the firearm for FREE! I don't think the FA folks do that? :D
 

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Hi BigBore,

I have a Bugger Ruger SRH in .454. Thanks for your info. Here is some for you. I've recently had two well known gunsmiths tell me the same things without my prompting them.

They will not do any work on any Ruger stainless steel firearm if said work involved drilling, tapping or reboring. The reason is that their stainless steel has a different hardness from muzzle to chamber. It gets "sticky", "soft" or "gummy" and grabs onto drill bits, bore bits, etc.. and they often break off in the barrels or frame or whatever.

Not being flush with money, I've boughten many Ruger products (and still have six or seven), but doing it all over again, I'd have boughten some other brand------any other brand ! I've had NO TROUBLE with any blue-steel Ruger, however, and will keep them. The rest are going "so long , pardner".

:D Chuck
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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This is not unique to Ruger. The titanium guns are a little prone to this also. Titanium is even more elastic. Cases tend to drag coming out of my Taurus Ti .357, and the chambers are slicker than snot.

Ruger does tend to leave a rough chamber which doesn't help matters either.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Listen, I'm not trying to rag on Ruger, good God almighty, I own dozens of them, but since this seems to be a problem for a lot of people, I THOUGHT some might want to know why. By the way, FA does offer a lifetime warranty on the Premier Grade. Field Grade guns only have one year, not that you will ever need it, and they are pretty liberal about what a one-year warrnty is. Now, let's see, what warranty does Ruger offer? Oh, that's right, NONE, no written warranty of ANY kind. But we all know Ruger's reputation about standing behind their product and that it is second to none, but that is not this is about anyway. Out of my FA I shoot a 355 gr. LBT LFNGC bullet over 31.5 gr. H110 that leaves the barrel at 1690 fps. When you open the gate and tip up the barrel, the cases fall out. At 32.0 gr, the vel is 1730 fps and the cases fall out, and while the accuracy is about the same, the ES is considerably higher than the 31.5 gr. load. These loads have turned in dozens of 5 shot groups when shot off a rock solid rest at 150 yards that measure between 2.250 and 2.750 inch. True, they hit 11 inches low from its 100 yard zero, but they shoot great. One hundred yard groups run 1.5 inch for the 31.5 gr. load and 2.0 inch for the 32.0 gr. load.

From the article it is suggested that Ruger went with a new steel so they could keep it a 6 shot. Too bad. They may have been better off using steel like they have been using all along and reducing the capacity to 5 shots. So, its not a pressure spike from an overload causing the cases to stick, it is the cylinder expanding and trapping the brass case when it contracts back. Loads a lot hotter than those that are sticking in the Ruger fall from the cylinder on the FA. The walls of the cylinder are much thinner than they are in 5 shot revolvers, so to keep the strength up to withstand the 65,000 psi of the .454 they went with a new steel, and that is what this article says is the problem. On lower pressure rounds like the .44 and the .480, this is not a problem. Maybe with any luck Ruger will offer a real fix, like a standard stainless steel 5 shot conversion that will take full advantage of the .454 and not require it to be downloaded even a little. Of course, if one is content to only load to ¾-4/5 max, then sticking is not an issue. But when proven safe factory loads stick, and stick for a lot of people, it's not the load, it's the gun. A lot of people bought the Ruger expecting to be able to load their .454 full throttle (or at least shoot factory loads in it), and I don't blame them, only to find out that they cannot get the performance other .454 shooters are getting without cases sticking. Loads that have proven quite safe in other .454 revolvers are causing sticking in the Ruger. Now we see it is not overloads, but stretchy steel. Of course, like is also mentioned in the article, you can always have Bowen or Linebaugh make you a 5 shot cylinder and fit it to the Ruger, that would certainly solve the problem, and put you in the price range of the FA revolvers.
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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BigBore, thanks for posting this, by the way.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
You're welcome, glad a couple of you guys did not take it as a personal attack on your baby. It's was starting to feel like a "shoot the messenger" type of thing.

I did not know that about the Titanium guns, and that is mighty good to know if it is causing sticking on even .357 Mag pressures. I was briefly considering the S&W Sc/Ti .44 magnum, but I think they carried light-weight a bit too far on that one. I'm real glad I passed now.
 

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Hi Big Bore,

Thank you for this posting. It is very helpful to be just a little smarter from having read it. heh heh

:D Chuck
 

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Hi Big Bore,

I can use some of your advice and knowledge.

What are the operating pressures of the loads you quote on the FA loads ? Have you found that .454's fired in the FA are OVERLOADS when fired in the Ruger SRH ? How many grains of powder would you reccommend I start with in my Ruger SRH----amoung the loads you show on your posting?

What you are accomplishing, simply blows my mind.

:D Chuck
 

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The Hog Whisperer (Administrator)
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I don't worry too much about the sticking in my Ti. It's a carry gun, and the 7 shots in it are all I have with me. Shot #8 will be when it's empty and I throw it at someone. Don't know the TKO for a 2lb gun thrown at say 100fps, but it's probably hurt if it hits them in the head.

Granted, the loads that were a bit sticky - and I do mean just a bit - were Cor-Bons and I think they load to the max. Frankly I'm OK with that in this circumstance. I've gotten used to the cases falling out of my .357 Blackhawk with any sane .357 load and am probably spoiled. But I did polish the chambers on that one (needed it too).
 

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Hi, Gents:
Here's a link to the article so you can judge for yourselves.
http://www.riflemagazine.com/magazine/article.cfm?tocid=1121&magid=80

The .454 cylinder has been controversial from the start. If it's that close to the edge then slight differences in the alloy or the heat treatment could make the difference between sticky and not sticky.

Titanium is a different cat. It's much, much more elastic than steel, sort of like comparing rubber to glass. I've seen the numbers, but I'm not an engineer and I can't relate them to how much extra a revolver cylinder will stretch.

Bye
Jack
 

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Big Bore and gang,
This has been a problem for quite a few gunsmiths since Ruger introduced that particular alloy. While Bowen is describing the problems with removing the barrels, the galling/welding/melting issue may be related to this springy material.

From Hamilton Bowen's website: http://www.bowenclassicarms.com/gunnotes.html#the new .480 Ruger
Which brings us to a few general observations about the new .480 and .454 Super Redhawks. There are two considerations to bear in mind when contemplating custom work on these guns. In our experience so far, it is nearly impossible to remove the barrels from these guns (at least the .454's). There is considerable evidence of thread galling/welding/melting which could just as easily occur in the receiver as the barrel. So, we are very reluctant at this writing to shorten barrels because they cannot be remove without the potential for receiver/barrel/finish damage. This means that we cannot recylinder the new .480 Super with a 5-shot part to accommodate both the .480 and the Linebaugh cartridge. All of our current .454 and .475 Super Redhawks are built on the .44 Super which has proven a dependable and trouble-free candidate for such work.

The other difficulty in working with the new-style Supers is the finish. We do not know quite what it is or how to match it which has considerably dampened our enthusiasm for working on the guns. About the only way to refinish them in the trenches is to bead blast off the battleship gray paint and apply a frosted matte finish. We will probably consider performing our basic 'Standard Issue' pkg. on these guns but only with the understanding that we cannot be responsible for the finish. While damage is extremely unlikely, it would entail a trip to the factory to repair. In any case, we expect to decide on this shortly.

I think Big Bore did the right thing by posting the information discussed above. Thanks for the heads up!
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
csward;
In regards to the operating pressures of these loads, I don't have a clue. I don't own a Ruger .454 so I have no idea how they would shoot in that revolver, but I suspect that since these are listed maximum loads for the FA that they would stick like the dickens in the Ruger. This load was sent to me by John Taffin for use with an SSK 340 gr. bullet. Start load is 22.0 gr, max load is 32.0 gr. John developed these loads in FA revolvers for use in FA revolvers only. When these loads were developed, the Raging Bull and the Ruger were not being made yet, or even on the drawing boards, or if they were, nobody was yet talking about them. The Taffin information was printed in the July/August 1987 issue of "American Handgunner." When I developed the load using the 355 gr. LBT bullet, I started at 22.0 and worked up in .5 gr. increments. I never saw any signs of excessive presser, no flattening of primers, no lengthening of the brass, nothing. The only problem I had was loads from 22 to about 28 gr or 29 gr were terribly dirty. The powder was not burning completely in spite of a very heavy crimp (RCBS dies with special .454 crimp) and was being blown back between the case and chamber and that caused some difficult extraction. You knew it was not pressure though when you extracted the case and unburned powder was literally embedded in the outside of the case, the case was almost black, and if you brushed of the flakes of powder, the cases dropped right back in the chamber and fell back out with no resistance what so ever. I almost quit shooting the H110 because if it was going to shoot this dirty, I didn't want to bother with it. But, since I already had the rounds loaded, might as well keep on going. All loads were shot over a chronograph. Once I reached 30 gr. it was like shooting a different powder. It started burning clean, ES went down, cases came out clean and fell from the chamber. I have loaded the WW brass five or six times now, IIRC, and I have never had to trim it yet and the primer pockets are as tight today as when I first loaded the virgin brass, but like I said, I have absolutely no idea of what pressure I am opperating at, but I do feel that it is completely safe in MY revolver. If loading for any other, I would start at the 22.0 gr. and work up as I did paying close attention to any pressure signs. Since these loads will likely stick in the Ruger well before reaching maximum SAAMI pressure, that would have to be the limiting load. A round you cannot get out easily isn't much use in the field IMO, regardless of pressure or reason.

Oh, by the way, one trick to reduce sticking mentioned in the article was to spray the rounds with water soluble case lube just before chambering. Well, excuse me, but I guess I am a bit too old fashioned. In my book, lube on the case is a very bad idea. The author claimed that the lube would increase backthrust very insignificantly, but I'll be darned if that would be the road I would take to easy extraction. We are not talking about a low pressure round here, but one that operates at CF rifle pressures. So if lube is a bad idea on a bolt action rifle 30-06, IMO it is a bad idea on the .454.
 

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Big Bore
Hey I wasn't jumping down your throat! :D I went and read that article and the guy who had the sticky loads was shooting Max loads! So it doesn't surprise me they stuck. As stated in the article those rounds were at the SAAMI max. :rolleyes: Granted yes the FA is stouter then the SRH-5 shot vs. six is what makes a revolver in my book that's why I went with SRH and price of course. :D I'm totally happy with my SRH and don't begrudge you your FA. Shoot on brother! :D The 454 is all the Pistol I ever want and need as it will kill anything that would need to be shot by me hunting or otherwise. :)
 

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Just read the article in Handloader magazine - Brian Pierce did a pretty good job of explaining the issue. Sounds like Ruger insisted on having a 6 shot wheel gun, whereas everyone else opted for the 5 shooter and thicker cylinder walls.

I don't own one- biggest handguns in my vault are .41 mag and .45 ACP. If I had bought one, think I might try to persuade Ruger to rethink their manufacturing and ship the unit back for a freebie 5 shot cylinder so's I could use full powerhouse loads, which is the reason most of you probably laid out the cash for yours. If enough people would rattle their cage, maybe they'd admit to a mistake and re-engineer. 'Course, with ol' Bill gone now, not sure what the present management's state of mind is. Probably bottom line and to H E double LL with the customer.
 

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Hi kdub,

As a 50 year customer of Ruger, I've had only a few complaints directed to them. Each time I was told that they know best what the customer wants ( what was I, chopped liver ?) and was giving it to them. Bill must have thought we all wanted the shaft, because he never hestitated to give it to me. I acknowledge he was a great innovator of manufacturing techniques to keep costs down and STRENGTH high . I've only a few more years to live so they won't miss my business. I'll bet his kid will sell the joint pretty soon.

I cannot fathom anyone who would want more muzzle energy than is provided by the .454 Casull. It is twice that of the .44 Mag and somewhere in the vicinity of a 30-30 Winchester. But there will always be those who feel a need to own the FA offerings and the S&W 50 caliber monster. Thank God that we all have so many choices.

:) Chuck











I don't own one- biggest handguns in my vault are .41 mag and .45 ACP. If I had bought one, think I might try to persuade Ruger to rethink their manufacturing and ship the unit back for a freebie 5 shot cylinder so's I could use full powerhouse loads, which is the reason most of you probably laid out the cash for yours. If enough people would rattle their cage, maybe they'd admit to a mistake and re-engineer. 'Course, with ol' Bill gone now, not sure what the present management's state of mind is. Probably bottom line and to H E double LL with the customer.[/QUOTE]
 

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The greatest laughs I ever enjoyed as Rangemaster at the local gunrange was watching those "macho" guys touching off their FA's chambered in 45-70. After the second time the hammer spur would lodge somewhere between their eyeballs, they would set them aside and go to something else. Never did see anyone empty a full cylinder at one setting.
 

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Hi kdub,

Har Har Har. You sure brought back some fond memories of others and even myself having similar experiences.

I've "invented" a recoil tamer that works for the factory loads for the .454 Casull---enhough so that I won't develop a flinch until after 35 or 40 heavy loads being fired. Before the tamer, I couldn't go even five rounds !

Anyway, at the club where I do most of my current shooting usually has the same group of pistol shooters of all the pistol-games played. However, so far, I have not had ONE person take me up on my offer to let anyone shoot a three shot group just to keep ME honest. Not even if I let them wear my recoil tamer !

Another funny thing about the macho-type guys is that I've offerred to tell shooters how they can attain my recoil tamer from local sources, and only TWO (2) people have asked me for the details, but a lot of shooters of this forum had read my thread about it. I've sent them my test data, and images of the two components, and stand ready to do the same for ANYONE who asks via e-mail.

Good luck, kdub.

Chuck
 
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