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Old April 17, 2014, 09:59 AM   #1
k511
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TC contender questions...

I've always wanted a contender, yesterday I found one private party for 450 so I snatched it up...it came with a .44 Magnum barrel equipped with a Williams peep sight, and also a .45lc barrel...
My question is will the .45lc (colt) barrel also accept a .410 shell without causing any issues? The barrel is only marked .45 colt, but a lot of info I found says that is common and shooting .410 threw it is fine..is this accurate info?
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Old April 17, 2014, 10:17 AM   #2
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Yes and probably not

Quote:
but a lot of info I found says that is common and shooting .410 threw it is fine..is this accurate info?
Yes it is but it looks like you have a dedicated .45LC barrel. "Usually" the ones that had the dual purpose, have a threaded removable choke that gave the proper pattern to the shot. Check to see if you have a choke. Also, TC "Did" make a shot, pistol bullet and you can't hardly find them. Many of the ..45/.410 barrels, came with a bead front sight and simple rear sight. . ....

I really question that yours will accept the .410, 3" shotshell .....

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Last edited by Pahoo; April 17, 2014 at 10:49 AM.
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Old April 17, 2014, 10:31 AM   #3
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.

AFAIK, the only issue, for a rifled .45 Colt bbl, sans the T/C choke tube, is that the rifling will spin the shot charge, making it spread inordinately and thereby limiting it's effective range.

I wouldn't shoot 3" shells, though - even if they'd chamber - but would try 2-1/2" shells (also readily available).



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Old April 17, 2014, 10:41 AM   #4
Magnum Wheel Man
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there are very few dedicated 45 Colt barrels, but they are out there ( mine is custom, as I couldn't find one easily ) I do have a 45 colt / .410 barrel, & those have internal threads on the muzzle, recessed enough that a bullet wont touch them, when shot with 45 Colt, that a "straight rifled" choke tube screws into for use with the .410 shot shells...

BTW ( & I'm at work, so I can't check easily ) there may also be rim differences, & the .410 rim may be thicker than a 45 Colt, causing the action to be difficult to close ???

any barrel set up from the factory for the .410, that I've seen, have always been marked 45 Colt / .410
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Old April 17, 2014, 10:54 AM   #5
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Here's a few pics...I the .45 colt barrel is the one not installed...it has no threads for a choke. I couldn't get a clear pic of the roll marks with the flash/ glare...but it says " Thompson center arms, rochester N.H" ".45 colt"
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Old April 17, 2014, 10:55 AM   #6
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Old April 17, 2014, 11:24 AM   #7
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Your barrel isn't set up for .410. The chamber is different from one made to shoot the .410.
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Old April 17, 2014, 02:02 PM   #8
Pahoo
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Look into the breech and where the rifling starts ??

k511
Since this thread started you got me thinking on what you have. I still lean toward you having a dedicated .45LC based mostly on experience. I have an old stack of TC catalogs and darn if all list the .45/.410 combination as well as stating that it will accept the 3" shell. .....

Then I went to some old Custom Shop catalogs and the same thing. When the Custom Shop was in operation, they would make whatever you wanted and willing to pay. I don't think your says Custom Shop on it so this might have been an early issue .45LC and may indeed omitted .410. I own two 45/.410 and two other calibers that shoot pistol shot. All have chokes. .....

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Old April 17, 2014, 02:10 PM   #9
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I use my custom 45 Colt ( only ) barrel strictly for deer hunting, & as I said, dedicated 45 Colt barrels are out there, but not very common ( dare I say "rare" )
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Old April 17, 2014, 07:51 PM   #10
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A 2-3/4 inch shot shell fits, and the break action functions as normal...but I'm not sure I want to go pull the trigger if I risk messing up the gun, or myself...
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Old April 18, 2014, 12:54 AM   #11
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I have a 10" .45 Colt/.410 barrel, with the "straightener" tube and the butterfly wrench. IT will take the 3" shells. It does not have a rib and has standard sights (no bead).

Never really that happy with the .45 Colt from that barrel, I got a another one, for only .45 Colt. 10" .45 Colt (NO .410)

Didn't know, until now they were a scarce item.

I have 6" barrels for .357Mag and 9mm Luger. I think those are uncommon, too?
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Old April 18, 2014, 06:59 AM   #12
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45 Colt

If the barrel is, in fact, chambered for .45 Colt, the chamber is going to be way too short for any .410 shotshell. The hull would extend into the rifling.
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Old April 19, 2014, 10:17 AM   #13
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Ok, I just checked, hands on, .45/.410 barrel, .45 Colt barrel, and 3" .410 buckshot shell (first .410 I came to).

Results:
.410 shell WILL NOT CHAMBER in .45 Colt barrel. (it stick out about an inch) Don't know if the .410 is hitting the rifling, or the ledge at the mouth of the chamber, and either way, its immaterial. It simply will not fit.

.410 shell drops into .45/.410 barrel freely, with the rim flush with the chamber. In other words, it fits just like it is supposed to.

If you barrel says ".45 Colt" it will NOT take .410 shells.

If it says ".45 Colt /.410" then it will take .410 shells, including the 3" (or mine does, anyway).
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Old April 23, 2014, 07:28 PM   #14
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You have the most desirable 45Colt barrel out there, you can shoot some real stout loads with that thing.
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Old April 24, 2014, 10:31 AM   #15
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Quote:
You have the most desirable 45Colt barrel out there, you can shoot some real stout loads with that thing.
I can, but I won't!

And the reason is recoil! And I have no need.

My .45 Colt barrel is the same as my .44 Mag barrel, 10" tapered octagon.
I have shot the .44 Mag barrel, and it is a eye opening experience! Even with a 10" barrel, the Contender is lighter than a 6" revolver. The recoil and muzzle flip are really shocking. Not fun at all.

I am certain "really stout loads" in .45 Colt would be the same, in that gun. Worse than the 14" ported bull barrel .45-70 I have. So, I don't bother.

I also don't shoot the max loads in my Blackhawks. Again, no need, for me. I did play around with heavy loads at one time, but for the past 30 years, a 250gr SWC at just about 1100fps has been my standard. Does everything I want a .45 Colt to do, and is still easy to shoot, although its less pleasant in the Contender than it is in my Ruger.
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Old April 24, 2014, 10:36 AM   #16
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my 10" bull round 45 colt only barrel is used for deer hunting, loaded warm with 250 grain XTP's the combo makes my knuckles bleed before I get to the 10th round... obviously I don't need to shoot more than one round at a time while hunting, but I was bloody developing the load
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Old April 24, 2014, 06:21 PM   #17
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My introduction to big bore handguns was my brother in laws 10" bull T/C. If I recall, been 25+ yrs, we had some 260-265 hard cast bullets with a full case of 4227! It made his 7 1/2" 44 Redhawk seem like a powder puff. We loved it
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Old May 10, 2014, 03:50 PM   #18
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410 vs 45

I bought a commanche 10" barrel,an it come with two chokes one for 45 colt, the other for 410,3" 410 will fit ,but I don't think I would fire one through it ,it also stated to make sure you matched the right choke with the right ammo, the shot shell choke is full choke
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Old May 10, 2014, 04:43 PM   #19
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I have a very old Contender with an "octagon barrel" originally chambered for 45 Colt and with an external 'screw on" shot choke. It's marked "45 Colt".

These "first generation" 45 Colt barrels had to be reamed out in order to shoot 3 inch 410 shell. I have one that was "reamed" and have shot thousands of 410 rounds through this particular barrel with no problems although it's my understanding that the "shot choke has to be removed to shoot 45 Colts. The old Octagon barrels are hard to find.

In later years Thompson made a several different dedicated (round, not octagon) 45/410 barrels with internal chokes. I have several of these and all are factory marked "45/410" on the barrel.
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Old May 11, 2014, 10:08 AM   #20
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Quote:
it's my understanding that the "shot choke has to be removed to shoot 45 Colts.
My .45/410 barrel is one of the round ones, with the internal "straightener" shot choke. I call it a "straightener" because while it has lands and grooves, they have no twist, they appear to be straight. The intent, of course, is to (at least to some degree) counter act the spin the rifling gives the shot charge.

Can't say precisely how well it works, I've never patterned the gun with/without (hmm, new thing to try sometime!).

I can say that the factory paperwork was very emphatic that regular .45Colt ammo was NOT TO BE FIRED WITH THE CHOKE IN PLACE!

It didn't say anything about shooting .410 slugs, and now, I'm wondering....
Anyone know?
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Old May 11, 2014, 07:46 PM   #21
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Quote:
My .45 Colt barrel is the same as my .44 Mag barrel, 10" tapered octagon.
I have shot the .44 Mag barrel, and it is a eye opening experience! Even with a 10" barrel, the Contender is lighter than a 6" revolver. The recoil and muzzle flip are really shocking. Not fun at all.
Egads. My .45-70 Super 16 is a tapered barrel. Had a heck of a time finding any .45-70 back then. Should have definitely looked a little longer for a bull barrel. The thing is so light it is horrendous with recoil. Absolutely far too much for me. It has had about 20 or 30 rounds through it total, over the years, and sits in the safe. I'll stick to .30-30 when shooting my Contender, thank you very much.
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