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Wildcats on the .450 Marlin? And...

5850 Views 8 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  alyeska338
Hi, I'm not a wildcatter or even (I hate to admit it) a handloader, but it seems to me that the .450 Marlin has a lot of possibilities as a parent case. With the belt to control headspace, it would be ideal for a neck down to .400-.416 (it is my understanding that headspace is a concern on the .400 Whelen). Also it seems to me the case would be ideal for a short bolt rifle for those who don't care for lever rifles. I think about the Gibbs Enfield in 45-70 and wonder if it would handle the .450, advantage would be not worrying about someone stuffing your hot 45-70 handloads in a Trapdoor Springfield or original black powder lever rifle. Besides, wouldn't a short woods rifle on the Model Seven or a Featherweight or Ruger Ultra light be cool?
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I agree the .416 Beartooth is very close, but to me the reason for building the .416 on the .450 case would be the same as the reason Marlin did it, the belt longer than a conventional magnum. With any wildcat built on a shortened .458 case (or .375 H&H to be proper) there is a very real risk someone will load that round into a small caliber magnum and fire it. With the belt providing headspace the round will fire and you can imagine the pressure that pushing a .416 bullet thru say a 7mm bore would produce.

You are absolutley correct that the long belt is a result of concern over idiotic lawsuits (and absolutely correct that it is unbelievable that someone would make such a dumb mistake.) My thinking was simply that you could use the .450 as a readily available round to avoid this possibility

You would be suprised what people believe or will try tho, just ask 20 soldiers about the AK-47 and ten will tell you with a straight face that the AK will fire M-16 ammunition but the M-16 will not fire the Russian round, so the AK is "better"

I read in the National Rifleman that Barnes dropped the idea of the .458x2" because of the possiblility of accidents, perhaps I should learn to take things with a grain of salt.

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