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I would like to make some HP loads for my ruger 45 colt. I have done research and Im pretty sure my gun will handle it, but I really dont want to blow my gun up or my hand off. So Im going to ask first. I have a nickle plated (I dont know if this matters), regular vaquero (not new vaquero), the serial number indicates it was made in 2002. I was planning on loading 250 gr XTPs with H-110 powder and mag primers. If you guys need to know any more info on it let me know. Also if you have any loads feel free to share. Thanks in advance.
 

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I never quote loads on the web...too easy to get fouled up....I agree with the advice to check the manuals, the published component load data and if you gun is in good solid shape you should be able to load right from the published load data but the load data (you failed to cite the grains of powder)....Using an XTP with 110 puts you up into the Ruger/Contender only load area which is a high pressure loading..regardless of the amount of powder you might plan to use..you also state you plan to use magnum primers...the printed data refered to on the IMR site talks of using a Large Pistol primer with H110 as I read it..not a magnum primer...I don't know how experienced you are but I'd think you might want to do a bit more research on the component sites and in your manuals concerning these higher pressure loadings..It sort of sounds like someone gave you some information about their "favorite load" and suggested you try it....one thing I've never done (but I'm an old sissy with arthritis) is to load "Ruger Blackhawk and Contender" loads that some folks have "published" in a Vaquero (old style...big frame, etc)....I just don't do it....I think some do and that's their deal...SAMMI has a spec that is published and it's valid for a reason...it works and it's probably as safe as anything. 20,000 psi or 30,000 (or in the case of my 30 carbine loads) maybe 50,000 psi can be a nasty thing to deal with if there is an issue. Rugers are wonderful guns but even a Ferrari can hit a guard rail. It may not matter to you and I may be off base (often am) but I have 3 'really shiny" old style Vaqueros from the late 90's and early 2000's and they are high polish stainless....look nickel but not.
 

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Thanks for the help guys. I didnt cite the ammount of powder because I didnt remember off the top of my head I was looking at the Lee reloading manual and now just looked at the Hodgon website space just referred me to. I understand that magnum primers cause more pressue, but in the Lee reloading book it says to use a magnum primer, I also heard other reloaders stating that H-110 should be used with a magnum primer. That is just what I heard from a some expirianced reloaders I have talked to. I am reletively new to this I have been reloading for 8 months. I dont usually make heavy loads, just plinking loads. But I plan on hunting with my 45 and would like to make a more stout load. That is the reason I went with the Vaquero. So the (old) vaqueros cannot take 30,000 PSI like the Blackhawlk, but they can take more than the standard 14,000 (I think) PSI? Also, OPOS, how can I tell if my vaquero is stainless? I just assumed it was nickle plated? It has the ivory grips on it.
 

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Thanks for the help guys. I didnt cite the ammount of powder because I didnt remember off the top of my head I was looking at the Lee reloading manual and now just looked at the Hodgon website space just referred me to. I understand that magnum primers cause more pressue, but in the Lee reloading book it says to use a magnum primer, I also heard other reloaders stating that H-110 should be used with a magnum primer. That is just what I heard from a some expirianced reloaders I have talked to. I am reletively new to this I have been reloading for 8 months. I dont usually make heavy loads, just plinking loads. But I plan on hunting with my 45 and would like to make a more stout load. That is the reason I went with the Vaquero. So the (old) vaqueros cannot take 30,000 PSI like the Blackhawlk, but they can take more than the standard 14,000 (I think) PSI? Also, OPOS, how can I tell if my vaquero is stainless? I just assumed it was nickle plated? It has the ivory grips on it.
I learned long ago that anything is possible with Ruger but I have never seen or heard of a nickle plated Vaquero...even the new "SASS" high polish vaqueros are polished stainless...there might be some chance that someone had a custom gun built and plated or something...I have no idea...I have a 3 3/4" large frame sheriff with ivories on it and high polish, I have a 45 Colt with high polish on it and a Vaquero Bisley 45 colt with high polish on it as well...all look nickle...all are stainless. The grips are probably composite or "faux ivory" as a set of real deal ivories can set you back way more than the gun. I've got one of Lee's books around and I've read it but if I were using 110 for example I'd want to see the IMR web site as linked above and see what it says..if you go to the site for 45 colt and go to the "print" link at the top of the page it will bring up a printable format...at the very top of that format page it will show the type/mfgr of case and the primer used and recommended...that's where I got my information on the lp rather than lmp primers...I load a ton of 45 colt but I load sissy loads with trail boss and with unique so when you talk big boomers with 110 I'm way out of your field...but I do know from IMR's pages that they do not even list 110 for any loads unless the loads are the hot "ruger/tc" types....have no idea if you gun is strong enough for that or not...whatever you do...move slowly and work things up...and follow the books and component manufacturers data...internet stuff can be a real problem sometimes.

I just went to the IMR web site and cut and pasted what they say on the "print" link on their Ruger and T/C loads for your info:

Hodgdon Powder Company
Cartridge Load Recipe Report - 10/31/2012
data.hodgdon.com
45 Colt (Ruger, Freedom Arms & T/C only)
Load Type: Pistol

The data is intended for 45 Colt Ruger Blackhawk, Freedom Arms, and Thompson Center Contender/Encore Handguns. Max pressure, 30,000 CUP. Do not use these data in any other make or model of firearm.
Cartridge Information
Case: Winchester Barrel Length: 7.25"
Twist: 1:16" Trim Length: 1.280"
Primer: Winchester LP


If I read it right it says primer type is Winchester LP...also it says the data is intended for 45 colt ruger blackhawk, freedome arms and thompson center contender / encore handguns..

I don't see Vaquero (old or new) listed..so for me I'd load if for my full size blackhawks if I wanted a hot load but not sure about the Vaquero.

Your call.
 

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The Vaquero can handle any .45 Colt load listed in the powder and bullet manufacturer's books, so long as they list the load safe for the Blackhawk. The cylinder diameter and metallurgy of the two firearms is the same. Remember, the original Vaquero (which yours is) also came in .44 magnum caliber, which is a similar pressure loading to the "hot" .45 Colt loads you're referencing.

The limiting factor for the low pressure loads is the design of the original Colt single action army, and the quality of metals used in older Colt firearms and the imported knockoffs.

Over the past 15 years or so, my brother and I have run hundreds of high pressure loads through his .45 and .44 chambered Vaqueros, no issues.
 

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I just shot a good sized doe with my NM Blackhawk loaded with a 250 grain XTP and 23 grains of 4227 and I was really impressed how the bullet performed. This was at just 10 yards so I'll try to shoot the next one a little farther away to see how it performs.
 
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