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Old June 22, 2017, 11:41 AM   #1
ligonierbill
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Big bore - which caliber?

If a fellow wanted more punch than .44 magnum or .45 Colt "Ruger only", what caliber should he look to? Leave out the S&W X-frame. Just too big for me to carry. Thinking the .480 Ruger (or Linebaugh's stouter version) or .454 Casull, but all suggestions are welcome. Load my own, of course.
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Old June 22, 2017, 12:20 PM   #2
BigJimP
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I like the .475 Linebaugh ...a little bit over the .454 Casull...its a little less snappy in my opinion.

But I would want it in a solid, and heavy, single action revolver...like the Freedom Arms model 83 in a 7 1/2" barrel.
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Old June 22, 2017, 12:26 PM   #3
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All revolvers in those fast chamberings will be big, but .454 Casull will let you shoot .45 Colt too. And buy a Ruger SuperRedhawk.
Where you are matters. Cabela's Dundee(Detroit) has a 7.5" in .454 Casull at $899.
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Old June 22, 2017, 12:44 PM   #4
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Just wondering, what is it you're shooting at that needs more punch than .44 Magnum? This info will help determine the best choice.

Personally, I like .454 Casull for power in a handgun.
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Old June 22, 2017, 03:52 PM   #5
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I have 4 big bores: 44, 454, 460 and 500. If you reload then you can make various loads. I find the 460 XVR to be most versatile since you have the 460, 454 Casull and 45 Colt ammo.

But for sheer variability, the 500 allows loading from 280-700 Grains.


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Old June 22, 2017, 06:14 PM   #6
KoRn.357
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I shoot 480ruger. It's a nice round. More punch then a .44mag. Minus the recoil of other similar big bores. If you can find one. You won't be disappointed in buying it.
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Old June 22, 2017, 06:16 PM   #7
Capt Rick Hiott
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I hunt with the .454 and love it! Hogs don't stand a chance!
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Old June 22, 2017, 06:41 PM   #8
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The 480 Ruger has been my bigger bore choice. I only have a Super Redhawk in that caliber, but bought a BFR in 480/475L a couple years ago and have been pleased with that six shooter. Mostly shoot 480's in it and it is all the revolver I need for hunting, if I hunt deer or even larger animals. Just have not been hunting for the last few years. I just got tired of the lease chase that goes on. Paying to hunt bothers me unless it is something really special like a high fence operation in Texas.

Have no interest in shooting powder puff loads in a bigger boar revolver.
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Old June 22, 2017, 06:44 PM   #9
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Look at the Magnum Research, Inc. BFR in 45-70 chambering. They give a little more punch than the 44 Mag. and 45 Colt Ruger only.
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Old June 22, 2017, 08:12 PM   #10
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If a heavy loaded .45 Colt or a .44 Magnum won't handle your game, then I'd suggest a good .577 double rifle, or a .505 Gibbs.

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Old June 22, 2017, 08:38 PM   #11
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Shoot one before you buy it. I have seen a good number of used big bore handguns, such as the 500 Magnum's at the Gun Store. It took less than a box of twenty rounds before the previous owner decided, it was too much fun, and traded it in for something of less fun.

Everyone goes through a magnum phase, and many, including myself, left it with trembling hands and a bad flinch.
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Old June 22, 2017, 09:05 PM   #12
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If I needed to go larger it would be a 480.
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Old June 22, 2017, 09:12 PM   #13
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I have a 7 1/2" Ruger Super RedHawk in .454 Casull. It's an Elk's worst nightmare.
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Old June 22, 2017, 11:20 PM   #14
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It's like, truly insane fireworks.... But here's a reasonable question for Ligionerbill: How well do you shoot a 44 Magnum or a really hot-loaded Ruger 45 Colt in the Blackhawk or Redhawk? If you have mastered those, then fine, have at something bigger if you simply must.
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Old June 23, 2017, 12:14 AM   #15
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If you want the best performance for the category and bragging rights, pick up a .475 Linebaugh.

If you just want something bigger, and don't care what anyone else thinks, find yourself a good .480 Ruger. More tame. More reasonable. But still a step up from .44 Mag.
And, since .480 Ruger runs at reasonable pressure levels, it can be had in .44 Mag/.45 Colt size revolvers. The Ruger SBH, I believe, was only offered as a 5-shot. The Ruger SRH was on the market as a 6-shot, then a 5-shot, and then again as a 6-shot. I think most other makers (half a dozen of them?) only ran 5-shot versions.

Personally...? I opted for the 7.5" Super Redhawk, and the one that I decided was the best balance of price, condition, location, etc. turned out to be a very early production 6-shot that was sitting in a pawn shop in South Dakota. (That did, however, require weeks of scouring the internet, classifieds, and auction sites; because I couldn't find one locally, couldn't order one, and even those scattered across the country were priced crazy high - or crazy high for condition.)
It was caked in nasty filth, but turned out to be in near-new condition under the grime and slime.
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Old June 23, 2017, 07:05 AM   #16
ligonierbill
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If you just want something bigger, and don't care what anyone else thinks...

There you go - answers some of the concerns. If I shot critters with every firearm I own...well, I wouldn't have time to load.

Regards recoil: With handguns, the primary concern is followup, but I doubt anyone "doubletaps" any of these revolvers. Beyond that, it's more about the grip and the weight. My .44 is a Redhawk (not SRH). It is a pleasure to shoot. Why anyone runs .44 Specials in these is beyond me. My .45 is a Blackhawk, much lighter with a traditional plowhandle grip. For heavy loads, I like Cast Performance, and with H110 loads below Hodgdon's max, this pistol sends 325s out at >1,300, 360s >1,100. They are a handful. Tend to wack the knuckle behind the trigger guard. But, so does my Bulldog.

Now, I shoot these as well as I shoot anything, but I'd like to shoot some heavy cast out of something designed for the purpose. So, I'll go with Frankenmauser's advice and look for a .480 SRH. Cast 400s sure sound like fun. Yeah, they're selling a 5-shot Super Blackhawk in .480 and .454. A little more weight than my standard BH , but still a traditional grip.

Thanks for the input.
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Old June 23, 2017, 11:07 AM   #17
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All the fast 45's are going to gain you is range. Handguns don't need a lot of velocity to work well. If you want a greater effect on big game, you want a bigger, heavier bullet, not a faster one. The 475 was once king but better bullets in the 500's has made them preferable. I'm referring to the Linebaugh, JRH, Wyoming Express, not the Smith.
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Old June 24, 2017, 02:20 AM   #18
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If the X-frame is too big to carry but the Redhawk isn't, I'd first have to ask about your carry situation. That's still a lot of gun!

Then I'd probably second the advice to stay with Redhawks or look at the SRH. It's too bad though because I really like the .460. It's the next level up from .454; a sort of .45 super-magnum. It's a hoot to shoot and in the XVR, I actually find it more comfortable to shoot than .454 in a regular Redhawk. My experiences only reflect factory ammo though.

I'll be curious to see where this search takes you.
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Old June 24, 2017, 05:23 AM   #19
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I'd say grab a Ruger in .460 or .454 casull, so you can shoot .45 colt as well. The .454 is too snappy for me personally.
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Old June 24, 2017, 09:23 AM   #20
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In handgun cartridges, bigger is better. Going up from 45 Colt to 454 Casull only gains you velocity, which theoretically increases your range, but can you hit anything at the extended range? Most people cannot. A muzzle velocity of around 1300 fps gives you all the penetration you might ever need, without going overboard on muzzle flash or recoil.
The 480 Ruger will up your power over a Colt or 44 magnum without being uncontrollable. A 350-400 grain bullet at 1200 fps will kill anything that walks or crawls.
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Old June 24, 2017, 09:54 AM   #21
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Quote:
In handgun cartridges, bigger is better. Going up from 45 Colt to 454 Casull only gains you velocity, which theoretically increases your range, but can you hit anything at the extended range? Most people cannot. A muzzle velocity of around 1300 fps gives you all the penetration you might ever need, without going overboard on muzzle flash or recoil.
The 480 Ruger will up your power over a Colt or 44 magnum without being uncontrollable. A 350-400 grain bullet at 1200 fps will kill anything that walks or crawls.
Nailed it!
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Old June 24, 2017, 08:51 PM   #22
ruggyh
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I would suggest a 500 JRH, can be loaded up or down and makes a bigger hole.

A BFR is very packable and very good bang for buck- pun intended

or you can go with customs if your budget allows

be safe
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Old June 25, 2017, 09:45 AM   #23
buck460XVR
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ligonierbill View Post
If a fellow wanted more punch than .44 magnum or .45 Colt "Ruger only", what caliber should he look to? Leave out the S&W X-frame. Just too big for me to carry. Thinking the .480 Ruger (or Linebaugh's stouter version) or .454 Casull, but all suggestions are welcome. Load my own, of course.
I personally don't see any advantage of a .454 over so called "Ruger Only" loads outta the same platform. One of the reasons the .454 is kinda the "red headed step child" of big bores is because of the harsh recoil in most of the readily available platforms. The little bit of gain is not worth the pain to most folks. One reason for the X-Frames is so that the shooting experience is pleasant enough for the average hand-gunner to become highly proficient with. As black mamba said, only thing you gain from more velocity outta the same caliber projectile is range. If one wants to legitimately hunt big game @ 150 yards with a handgun, you are not going to do it one handed, or without some form of rest. You are not worried about "packability" as much as accuracy and a humane shot. If the desire is not to hunt with a revolver at extended ranges, then proficiency isn't as much as a concern and one can stand a little bit of pain at the range every once in a while to make sure the gun and ammo still fire. If I wanted something packable, that makes a bigger hole than a .45, that is still halfway pleasant to shoot, and since I reload, I'd seriously consider the .50 AE.
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Old June 26, 2017, 03:45 PM   #24
22-rimfire
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If you like single actions, I would definitely try to find a BFR in 475L/480R over the Super Redhawk. It is much more pleasant to shoot... much. I have the 6.5" BFR and have been very pleased with it to this point.

I like the short cylinder BFRs.
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Old June 26, 2017, 08:12 PM   #25
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If a heavy loaded .45 Colt or a .44 Magnum won't handle your game, then I'd suggest a good .577 double rifle, or a .505 Gibbs.
I agree... Unless you are just wanting to punish your arms, hands and ears for no good reason. Some people do.... and call it 'fun' .
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