44spl/44mag vs. 45colt/454 casull?

Discussion in 'Reloading' started by Bigeclipse, Feb 22, 2014.

  1. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    I'm buying a super redhawk for shooting and hunting. I would like to hear all your opinions on costs for reloading these in general? Ive always wanted a revolver for shooting at the range but also want one for hunting so which one offers the best of both especially for costs of reloading since this will be a fun plinking range gun as well. My hope is obviously to reload and plink with 44special or 45 colt and then hunt with 44 magnum or 454casull. I will be hunting deer and black bear and I know the casull is kind of overkill for this BUT if the 45colt outweighs the 44 special/44mag when it comes to reloading costs and fun of shooting then id opt for it.
     
  2. RT2506

    RT2506 Well-Known Member

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    Will not be much difference between 44 Spl. and 45 Colt in reloads. The 454 will be more than the 44 mag because it uses more powder. You can plink around with 45 Colts but before you do any hunting with the 454 you better spend a LOT OF TIME shooting 454s. It's recoil makes a 44 mag look like a pussy cat. You just need to learn how to shoot a heavy recoiling pistol and it takes a bit of burned powder to learn. I have not found a deer that can stand up to a heavy loaded 45 Colt Ruger load with a good SWC or 250 gr Hornady XTP.
     

  3. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    I would defy shoot the 454 a lot before I hunted with it. The only reason I was even considering the super redhawk 454 is that I know someone one selling one in almost new condition for 600 which isn't bad where I am. Super redhawk in 44 are really hard to find. So if 45 colt is as cheap as 44spc to reload I was thinking I might go with the 454. Is 45 colt brass and heads s easy to find as special? Is the 454 bone crunching painful? Should I really just wait until I find a super redhawk in 44?
     
  4. RT2506

    RT2506 Well-Known Member

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    Upon some more thinking about it I would just go with a 44 mag. You can forget using 44 Spl in it. You can load the 44 mag case down to 44 Spl velocities with cast bullets. I have shot tons of 240 gr cast bullets with 7 grs Unique out of a 7 1/2" Black Hawk and Red Hawk. They run between 900 and 950 fps and were really accurate and manageable. Used to shoot 22 grs 2400 with Sierra 240 gr JHC and they would do 1400 fps was accurate and wicked on deer.
    I sold both 44s to fund other interest, T/C Contender single shots. I picked up a Ruger black hawk 45 Colt 5 1/2" barrel a few years ago and it serves well as woods carry and deer stopper. 9 grs Unique with a 250 cast SWC will do 900 fps and 20 grs H110 around with Hornady 250 XTP does around 1100 fps. Never killed a deer much over 50 yards with either load but it gets the job done fine. So does a 45 ACP with a 200 gr cast SWC and 7 grs Unique under my 50 yards limitation I try to keep. Usually also use my Contender with 14" 30-30AI pushing a 125 Nosler ballistic tip 2670 fps for beyond 50 out to 200 yards or so for deer.
    I have shot a number of 454s but never cared about owning one. To me it has about twice the felt recoil of a same style and weight 44 mag shooting 300 gr bullets. As old Elmer Keith used to say, "you have to learn how to let a heavy recoiling pistol recoil." It is impossible to hold one down and trying to will cause bone crushing feeling. Learning to keep your arms locked and take the recoil in your shoulders and back helps tame felt recoil. The 454 and 44 mag with full house loads are not something that I enjoy shooting 50 or so rounds at a time. The concussion makes my head hurt. You sure don't want to shoot them without good ear protection. I made the mistake of shooting one of my 44 mags out of a shooting house without my ear plugs once. Will not do that again.
     
  5. Shortmagman

    Shortmagman Well-Known Member

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    To answer your question, Yes the 454 Casull will produce pain!
    The reason the person is selling the Ruger Redhawk in 454 is probably either it recoils too much or the ammo is too expensive.

    I bought a Ruger Redhawk in 454 Casull a number of years ago, and my first experience with it and factory ammo left an impression on me. The Winchester 260 grain load produced a velocity of 1800 ft/sec over the chronograph that I was using. If you don't think that you can feel that recoil you only have to shoot it a few times. I later loaded it down with a cast bullet at 1500 ft/sec and even though it still recoils it is not too painful. I have a scope on the gun and that helps tame it a little.

    What you can do is buy the 454 and shoot 45 Colt ammo in it. Most factory 45 Colt ammo is very tame, so you can shoot as much as you wish. If you want more power just use 454 Casull ammo.

    Another option for you is a Ruger Blackhawk or Vaquero in 45 Colt. I have a 45 Vaquero and I load it with 255 grain bullets and is pleasant to shoot. Because it is one of the strong Rugers I can load it up close to the a 44 Mag..
     
  6. Engineering101

    Engineering101 Well-Known Member

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    The 44 ammo is cheaper and more available and the 44 will kill those animals you mentioned just fine. I have a Super Redhawk in 44 mag with a 2X Leupold scope. It also has laser grips but those are to aid in home defense and not hunting.

    For deer hunting here is a great trick. I load the Hornady 265 grain FTX that is intended for the 444 Marlin and such but... with the length of the cylinder in the Redhawk I can load it with adequate clearance with normal case prep and crimp. The BC at 0.225 is way better than anything else you might pick since it has the pointed plastic tip. I'm not talking the 225 grain FTX which Hornady lists under the 44 Mag as it has a BC of only 0.150. With 21.8 grains of W296 behind the 265 grainer I'm getting 1,397 fps and 1,148 ft lbs at the muzzle.
     
  7. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    pretty much the only reason I was Contemplating the 454 was because it is in mint condition... less than 30 rounds shot and he only wants 600 for it. New super redhawks go for about 950 new around here so that was a good deal. I was thinking maybe I could simply play with 45colt for fun and then load my own 454s on a milder side for deer hunting but it sounds like I should wait for a 44mag to come around...
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2014
  8. MachV

    MachV Well-Known Member

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    Been there and don't regret going with the 454!!
    Nuthing wrong with a 454 Casull= specially if you reload. Just keep the chambers clean and the 45lc is just plain fun!!
    Heck my accuracy loads for my 7.5 SRH Casull are running right at high book 44mag speeds.
    Have never owned a 44mag but reload for a couple and can tell you a critter aint going to know the difference!!
    Just don't try to hotrod the 454casull, it will tear up a SRH and TC Encore lightbulb
     
  9. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    that's good to hear. I'm not in a huge rush...the only reason I was thinking the 454 was my friends is in so great shape and great price. how much is relowding cost of 45 long colt compared to 44 special...i.e. cost of heads and brass
     
  10. Sully2

    Sully2 Well-Known Member

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    Go with the 44Mag. Load it down or load it hot...It will do all that you ask of it.

    If ya cant find a good used one...put that $600 toward a new Smith.
     
  11. MachV

    MachV Well-Known Member

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    to me this is really a no brainer.
    $600 454 or $950 44mag=454
    $600 44mag or $950 454=44mag
    Some will say the 44 mag is more available/cheaper and it usually is but 6 months ago 454 and 32 special where the only ammo on the shelves!
    If I had it to do over again I would not mess with 44special or 45lc brass, just load the 44mag and 454 down and have at it. The reason being if you fire a lot of the smaller rounds it pits the chambers and full power loads with the big cases get difficult to get out of the chambers.
     
  12. AKGuide

    AKGuide Well-Known Member

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    I have had my 454 since I was 16, and yes it is a chore to shoot if you aren't used to the type of recoil this cartridge generates. Although, if you do purchase this gun I would recommend a pachmayr grip to replace the stock one. It is much softer, has finger grooves, takes the sting out of the pistol, and also protects your middle finger from getting beat up by the trigger guard. The 454 super redhawk is way more versatile than the 44 mag. You can shoot 45lc cowboy loads to practice and load them as P+ colt loads with numerous cast lead bullets (I recommend cast performance) to practice getting used to the recoil (buffalo bore offers P+ colt loads with the 300 grain speers). When you are ready to lay the hammer down load some casull brass with 265, 300 or 325 a-frames. My favorite loads for my casull are 325 a-frames and 360 grian cast performance gas checks.

    Reuben
     
  13. lloydsmale

    lloydsmale Well-Known Member

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    ill agree and a little with some and disagree with ohters. If its your first big bore handgun get yourself a 44 mag. Ammo is easier to find and about half the price and the same goes for brass if you reload. Theres 10 times the varity of loaded 44 mag ammo out there then there is 454. If you dont reload full power 454s arent a good starting point for learning how to shoot a big gun. If you reload the 44 mag in a super redhawk can be taken up to pressure levels that about rival 454 performance. Ill put it this way ive got 41mags, 44mags, 45 colts, 454s 475s and 500 linebaughs and what youll 9 times out of 10 will find me in the woods with is a 44mag of some sort. Unless your intentionaly hunting big bear the 44 mag loaded with a heavy cast bullet at 1200 fps will take care of anything that can be shot with a handgun. I shot a number of buffalo with handguns of all calibers and the quickest kill i ever withnessed on one with any gun, handgun or rilfe was the 1100 lb cow i shot with my 4 5/8s blackhawk 44 mag using a 250 grain cast bullet at 1200 fps. Sure it was probably just one of those things but still drives home the point that if it cant be done with a 44mag most handgunners shouldnt be fooling with it anyway.
     
  14. Bigeclipse

    Bigeclipse Well-Known Member

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    I have chosen the 44 for sure now...but now I'm stuck on whethrr to get a super redhawk or a 629. I know that the super redhawk is the way to go for hubting but as I stated I will be shooting this for funmuch morw than ill be using it for hunting. I will definitely only be using iron sights. just worrued if the 629 will have failures...who knows what ill shoot but most likely it will be light loads for range days and then 180-240 grainers with a decent load...nothing crazy hot as I will be only hunting deer...unless a black bear strolls on by. will the 629 hold up to this? this may soubd silly but the 629 is so much better looking in my opinion and woukd rather have that