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I've been shooting my 7 1/2 inch NM Blackhawk loaded with 23 grains of 4227 pushing a 250 grain XTP and really enjoy shooting them, they're accurate and powerful enough to handle any critter that I want to hunt. I've been wondering though, how does this load compare to the 44 Mag? I've never shot a 44 myself but would love to give it a try someday, until then, could some of you guys that have shot the 44 and a 45 loaded similiar to the load I've been shooting tell me how they compare. Thanks.
 

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A .44 Mag is in my future.
I would imagine the loads to be a lot stouter.
I'm sure someone else will chime in.
 

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Greetings,

Elmer Kieth blew up :eek: several old Colt 45 single actions trying hot loads. At some point, he thought the thicker cylinder walls of the 44 special might allow a little more velocity. If you want 44 magnum ballistics, get a 44 magnum... BE SAFE NOT SORRY!!!

moondog911 :cool:
 

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Using the .45 Colt +P loads in the manuals, there is pretty much no noticeable difference between the .44 Magnum and .45 Colt performance. Bullet weights being equal, the .44 bullet has a higher sectional density and will penetrate slightly deeper at the same velocity, and the .45 bullet is (obviously) slightly larger in diameter and will make a larger hole.

There is no real world difference in performance on game animals at ranges you would shoot at them with a handgun.

But it's always fun to have more guns and tinker with them.
 

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Dissolving the Myth .45 Colt

Ross Seyfried .45 Colt
A quote from Ross's article "Many could be taken with the .44 Magnum, but I always felt like I was asking a boy to do a man’s job."

Just some food for thought :) . Articles have been posted many times before.

As for +P, I didn't realize there was any for .45 Colt. There are Ruger Only Loads though ;) .

As for recoil, you won't tell the difference of .44 bullets vs .45 bullets of the same approximate weight moving at the same velocity. Compare apples to apples....
 

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I've been shooting my 7 1/2 inch NM Blackhawk loaded with 23 grains of 4227 pushing a 250 grain XTP and really enjoy shooting them, they're accurate and powerful enough to handle any critter that I want to hunt. I've been wondering though, how does this load compare to the 44 Mag?
Top end loads in the two are hard to distinguish with ear protection. Those with any hearing left, might find the difference in muzzle pressure without protection. Both guns weigh pretty much the same, and with bullets of roughly equal weight, going the same velocity, generate the same amount of recoil, according to Newton.

If you own either one, the other would be redundant to anyone but a shooter that needs one of everything. No problem with that guy myself, as I own six bows, an easy dozen fishing rods, and two safes full of guns. I have a .44 because, hmmm, I don't have a .45. ?? Maybe I should though.
 

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Note: This is not meant to be a recommendation for anyone else, just simply an explanation of what I do. Please refer to reliable/trusted handloading sources.

I have several handguns chambered in both .44 magnum and .45 Colt and have been shooting and handloading for over 40 years. I primarily shoot full power .44 magnum handloads from my Ruger Super Blackhawk, Ruger Vaquero (orig.), Desert Eagle, and S&W models 29 and 629.

In my .45 Colt revolvers, I am very careful which ones I feel comfortable shooting full power (.44 magnum level) handloads. Those include my Ruger Blackhawk .45 Colt/.45 ACP Convertible, Colt Anaconda, Taurus Public Defender Poly and, on a rare occasion, my Taurus Total Titanium snubnose revolver.

In contrast, I only shoot mild/medium handloads in my Colt 2nd generation Single Action Army.

Just for fun, here are some pics of a few of those handguns mentioned above.

















That's enough.
 

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I load and shoot 44 spec/mag and 45 Colt and I'm always concerned when the question of "pushing" one caliber to equal or surpass another because it always brings up the question of the "New Vaquero or the new flat top Blackhawk" being safe for the Ruger or Contender loads...I wish there had never been a "Ruger only" load data published under that name...maybe something like "look out below loads", etc...I always wonder how many folks look at the big time 45 Colt load data published for Ruger only and think they can load full house 45 loads in a New Vaquero as a regular diet....Ok, I'll pop the popcorn and sit back and listen to the reasons it's ok and why it's not....my concern is a loose or badly worn "New" anything getting a hot shot load at the critical time in it's life. But then I'm a sissy and load everything down and never exceed load data in the published data...and I don't have any "New Vaqueros"..I do have a Lipsey Flat top 44 and no I don't push the loads...I don't run Keith loads in it though everyone says it's a no brainer...just don't want to shoot out a great little big bore when I can get a huge and safe bang from other guns I own.

I look at the Smith load data for the 45 Colt for example...when he gets up into the higher load data with heavy projectiles he makes reference to "Black hawk and T/C" loads only....then later on in even higher loadings for the 45 he cautions " for Ruger and T/C only"...that might lead some folks to think any Ruger is fine for loading those barn burner loads and get in a mess...at least stand to damage a gun. Again, I'm a fuddy duddy when it comes to hot loading...if a man wants a bigger bang than the data seems to call for...get a bigger caliber....in hot rodders terms.."no substitute for cubic inches"...
 

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.Ok, I'll pop the popcorn and sit back and listen to the reasons it's ok and why it's not....
First, I don't load much hot stuff as I find I don't need to.... But those that want to, should be able to. I see no problem what so ever with doing so. I 'know' my guns and know what that are capable of. It's called being educated! Anyone that is a reloader/hand loader should be aware of what he/she is loading for. Let Darwin do his duty (blown guns, etc.) for those that approach reloading willy nilly... so to speak. In NO WAY should everyone be 'restricted' just because a few don't think it is safe or not willing to load heavy in their guns. That is the liberal way of thinking which is just plain wrong. Again, just become 'educated' on what you have and what you want to load. Go or no go. Work up your loads. Simple and you stay safe that way. I'll load my way ... you load your way ... and we both are happy .... and no blown guns either way :) .
 

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I no longer have my old .45 Colt data that I loaded for my long barreled Ruger Blackhawk .45 Colt/.45 ACP convertible, but I was shooting silhouette competition back in the 70's with that awesome thing and was launching 250 grain jacketed bullets at .44 Mag velocities using full-house W-296 and CCI Mag primers, and all shots would cluster at 25 yards.

That was before such loads were considered routine in that Ruger chambering, and I was in a virtually new frontier. There were very few people that had used these loads before in those guns and there wasn't much of a track record to know what to do. They didn't know at the time that certain slow burning powders were not ignitable at lower charges, and some published loads were giving data that could cause trouble. I had a few memorable and embarrassing experiences before I switched to those primers when the powder didn't ignite and I had a cylinder full of ball powder, and a bullet jammed in the forcing cone, locking up the cylinder. On the other hand, nobody wanted to tell someone to jump in with maximum charges of W-296. Things are much better now, all around, with plenty of established, safe data. As always, such powders call for very close adherence to keeping charges up to maximum, and using hot magnum primers.

But there is no question that the .45 Colt can be very easily made to generate impressive energy, with astounding accuracy. Personally, I always enjoyed the .45 Colt, and found it extremely accurate with such loads, as well as plinking loads. Having had plenty of experience with both the .44 Mag and .45 Colt, my IMPRESSION is that the .44 has a sharper recoil, while the Colt had a more robust, but pushy one, which I found more pleasant in similar framed guns, but that's entirely subjective. Having said that, I always felt in those days that using the .44 Mag was more (if you will excuse the term) legitimate, and that I wasn't in some unknown and adventurous place with the .45. Obviously, that land has been explored fully now, and it's well tread.
 

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Have always loved the way the shooting sports - silhouette, cowboy action shooting and others - have helped to give some of the old cartridges a new lease on life. The 22 Hornet, the 32-20, the 45 Colt, 44 Special, the 45-70 and so many more of the old greats just keep on doing the job, thanks to folks who know better than to let them die because they don't have the word magnum behind them. I am so overdue to get a 45 Colt and see what it can do.
 

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I regularly use buffalo bore 45 colt plus p load that uses a 335 grain lead bullet technology bullet at 1325 fps out of my 71/2 inch blackhawk and I have fired over 800 of these and about 1500 of a handload that does this velocity wise. I will not publish the load for liability sake. My 45 colt blackhawk has over 75 k round thru it and over 30 k were ruger only or more loads.
 

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Have always loved the way the shooting sports - silhouette, cowboy action shooting and others - have helped to give some of the old cartridges a new lease on life. The 22 Hornet, the 32-20, the 45 Colt, 44 Special, the 45-70 and so many more of the old greats just keep on doing the job, thanks to folks who know better than to let them die because they don't have the word magnum behind them. I am so overdue to get a 45 Colt and see what it can do.
My current .44 Special affair is witness to that, but I still would like another .45 Colt some day. Just something about that big old cartridge that brings a smile. :)
 
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Literally many living things been killed by the slow moving blackoowder loads of the 45 Colts. Like already been mentioned shot placement is the key. If you need for pure oower to dish it out on your body that brings the soul out then you have 454/460/480/500/45-70 in handguns bur I personally dont need that kind of punishment.
 

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Zombie thread from 2012 with an OP that has been MIA since 2016. Closing the thread.
 
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