.454 Casull or .44mag, Any real difference??


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kgpcr
November 4, 2008, 09:19 PM
I am going to be buying a new Ruger Redhawk and was thinking about getting a .454 Casull but after looking at the balistics i can get with .44mag i am not sure there is much difference. Buffalo Bore makes a 340grn .44mag at 1475fps. I am not finding much in the Casull that will rival that. Thoughts??

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Big Daddy Grim
November 4, 2008, 09:21 PM
I looked at both and went with the S&W .460 but I like my old Airlite .44.

s4s4u
November 4, 2008, 11:50 PM
Buffalo Bore makes a 340grn .44mag at 1475fps.

But you can't buy BB in your local SG's store. I do agree however that the 44 magnum is plenty good for most anything you'll hunt in this country, and won't beat you up or ring your ears like the longer jobs. Even at 1300 FPS it will do a number on game.

kgpcr
November 5, 2008, 12:08 AM
This will be my carry gun in Alaska. the bear at the rivers we fish are after the same salmon we are after and it gets hairy once in a while no matter how much you try and avoid trouble. a 454 is as big as i will go

evan price
November 5, 2008, 01:46 AM
You can use .45 Colt in a Casull if you want lesser performance.

Or you can load up on .44 Mag to get better performance.

bluemalibu
November 8, 2008, 04:33 AM
I lived for several years in Fairbanks, working as a police officer. I've hunted the state with pistol from Barrow to the islands 70 miles south of Valdez harbor.

Before you entrust your life to the .44, PLEASE look at the ballistics for this caliber again, and realize what you are seeing... the .44 Magnum has LESS muzzle energy than the lowly .30 caliber carbine! (Do you know anybody that has EVER purposely chosen an M1 carbine to hunt brown bear?) If you'd like a graphic picture of the prospect, read "Alaska Bear Tales"... and count how many people there have been buried after unloading a full cylinder of .44 rounds into the breadbasket of a griz.

The .454 Casull develops 1823 ft-lbs energy (and 15,000 psi greater pressure) compared to 971 ft-lbs of muzzle energy for the magnum... (remember, one must quadruple the power to double the speed) The round is so potent that while in development, Freedom Arms found that jacketed bullets could not be used. The forcing cone would rip the jackets from the core of the round. To manufacture the rounds for the .454, solid slugs of copper are drilled out and then bonded to the lead insert.

While salmon fishing in AK, I kept a 6 1/2" Freedom Arms single action .454 on my hip, and a 20" stainless steel riot gun across my back, loaded with 3" magnum sabot rounds.

cobra2411
November 8, 2008, 11:26 AM
I shoot and reload a lot of .45lc so the .454 vs 44mag choice is easy for me. I also have a 454 Chevelle, so... :)

Blue is correct, the .454 is a superior round to the .44. For most hunting it doesn't matter, but when you really need stopping power, go with the 454.

Seafarer12
November 8, 2008, 03:06 PM
I would get the biggest thing you can hit at what your aiming at and do it more than once. It is better to hit a bear with 3 44mag rounds than hit him with one 454 and miss with the other 2 shots.

C-grunt
November 9, 2008, 04:30 AM
Why not the 460? You can shoot both 454 and 45 Colt out of it. The only things I can see that 44 has over 454/460/500 is less recoil and its easier to find. I personally think that if you are going with a non mainstream round like the 454, you might as well get the 460 or 500.

Ohh....... I see you want a Redhawk. Id say 454 then.

jonsidneyb
November 10, 2008, 02:10 AM
I know this is off topic here but the shotgun was mentioned.

If the purpose for the shotgun while fishing was bear defense why use a set up for Sabots.

Non-Sabot slugs are more effective at defense ranges. The only thing the Sabot Slugs give you is longer range and accuracy.

Other Slugs give enough accuracy for this situation and is more potent.

Gun 4 Fun
November 12, 2008, 03:47 AM
Bluemalibu- Are you kidding? You either haven't done much shooting or are an armchair theororist. There is no comparison between a .44 and the .30 carbine. Energy doesn't kill! Momentum does the work, and there is little momentum behind a 110 gr. bullet. There are ALOT of loads for the .44 that turn up well over 1200 foot pounds, with the bullet weight to keep it penetrating. It's easy enough to prove, use whatever backstop you like, wood, papers, wet papers, dead carcasses, I don't care. The .44 will out penetrate the carbine every time. It doesn't matter if you have 1000 fp. or 10,000 fp., as long as your putting a bullet of decent caliber and weight through the vital organs, and leave an exit wound for bloodloss and to let cold air in [for shock to the pulminary system] whatever you hit is going to die.

bluemalibu
November 13, 2008, 12:41 AM
Gun4Fun - All are welcome to their opinions... heaven knows that that is why there are Fords and Chevys. But rest assured that one certainly will not be winning many friends when attempting to belittle another contributor in the opening line of a post, whom you do not know, in some misguided attempt at gaining credibility.

I would not waste the energy to attempt to enlighten someone that has obviously made up their mind about a topic, for fear of their only being confused by the facts... but, because many are new to the shooting sports that want to be able to gain knowledge through the collective experience of others... I'll not allow them to accept as truth, what you are attempting to sell.

All that have a grasp of ballistics, know that any argument of Momentum vs. Muzzle Energy is ludicrous. It is equivalent to someone saying "It's not about speed, it's about velocity!" They're exactly the same thing.

Muzzle energy is derived from the formula: 0.5 x mass x velocity squared… or, in other words, the product of mass and velocity.

Momentum is a measure of the motion of a body, equal to the product of mass and velocity at a rate of 0.5 x mass x velocity squared.

Not one bit of difference.

It also shows the absurdity of FunnyGuny's assertion that it's all about 'momentum', and that "It doesn't matter if you have 1000 fp. or 10,000 fp" of energy. Again, because they are the same... more is simply more.

All that kgpcr wanted to know was whether there was really any difference between the .44 Magnum and the .454 Casull.

And there is a world of difference.

The .44 is actually only .429" inches in diameter. And, while one surely could reach higher energy levels with duplex powder charges, the manufacturing industry standard for the magnum round hovers between 800 and 850ft-lbs. (I was generous in my earlier post, by using the 971 figure that indeed is available, though not the norm, not wanting to appear biased.) On that same note, energy levels for the Casull can be achieved well above the 2000ft. lb. mark... but, even the factory loads develop such extremely high chamber pressures already, (60,000 CUP) that Small Rifle primers are used in the chambering because of their added strength in construction.

This isn't regurgitation of some want-a-be hype, or the drivel of an "armchair theororist"(sic), but simple physics, fact, and real-world experience... (among which was six terrific years with the AMTU.)

kg--- , PM me and I can send the pictures of the moose I've taken with the Casull. When you run into a brownie, the time that you'll be allotted to clear leather and send a round down range may easily be limited to a single shot. Make it one that gives you the best chance of telling your story to the rest of us...

The Wiry Irishman
November 13, 2008, 12:47 AM
Muzzle energy is derived from the formula: 0.5 x mass x velocity squared… or, in other words, the product of mass and velocity.

Momentum is a measure of the motion of a body, equal to the product of mass and velocity at a rate of 0.5 x mass x velocity squared.

uh.... momentum is just mass times velocity.

FLoppyTOE
November 13, 2008, 01:53 PM
Both are fine 454 is stronger but there is nothing wrong with .44 mag.

FLoppyTOE
November 13, 2008, 02:12 PM
bluemalibu, buddy, common now. 850 ft-lbs? I don't know where you get your numbers.

Check this(or any other legit chart)
http://world.guns.ru/ammo/am02-e.htm

Nobody will argue that the 454 is more powerful, but you make the .44 mag sound like a toy.

BTW, Irishman is right.
p=momentum
Ke=Kinetic energy aka muzzle energy
m= mass
v = velocity

p=m*v

Ke=.5*m*v squared

Ke and P not equal.

Smitty908
November 13, 2008, 03:34 PM
blue,

The term momentum is referring to the resistance of an object in motion to change speed.

Which would you rather catch bare-handed? A baseball thrown as fast as a pitcher can, or a 'Nerf' ball thrown by the same pitcher? Even if the pitcher could throw the nerf ball twice as fast as the baseball, it still wouldn't hurt much.

The heavier the object, the more it wants to remain in motion.

Thus, more penetration.

-Tim S.

bluemalibu
November 13, 2008, 07:10 PM
Your right, of course… You’ve made me sorry that I tried to help this guy stay alive to fish another day.

It simply must be an all-out conspiracy of the manufacturing industry purposefully under-reporting their ballistics numbers for the standard loading of the .44 Magnum, for insurance purposes.

PMC 240 Gr. TCSP Muzzle Velocity - 1300 fps.; Muzzle Energy - 900 ft-lbs.

Federal 240Gr. JHP, Muzzle Velocity - 1180 fps.; Muzzle Energy - 740 ft-lbs.

Winchester 240 Gr. SJSP Muzzle Velocity - 1180 fps.; Muzzle Energy - 741 ft-lbs.

Remington 240 Gr. SJSP Muzzle Velocity - 1367 fps.; Muzzle Energy - 850 ft-lbs.

Comparative power chart: www.chuckhawks.com/handgun_power_chart.htm

Ballistics Chart: www.volny.cz/buchtik/Revo/Ballistic_Info_komplet.htm

bluemalibu
November 13, 2008, 07:39 PM
It's awfully easy for everyone to safely sit at home behind a keyboard and give advice about the adequacy of a chambering to someone else.

But don't you get it??... This person will be depending on this information to stay alive.


I know that there has to be others on the board that have hunted Alaska with a handgun... hopefully they'll speak up and join me in quoting Elmer Keith...

"Hell, I Was There"!

Dogbite
November 13, 2008, 08:21 PM
Listen to Bluemalibu, that gentleman knows what he is talking about. I was born and raised in Alaska, and stayed out in the bush for 3 months at a time. I have had many big bear encounters. I have also owned the 454 Casull for many years. You definitely want the more powerful 454 Casull. Take bluemalibus advice, and mine, and live.

The Wiry Irishman
November 13, 2008, 08:47 PM
It's awfully easy for everyone to safely sit at home behind a keyboard and give advice about the adequacy of a chambering to someone else.

But don't you get it??... This person will be depending on this information to stay alive.


I don't think anyone's disputing that .454 is the most effective caliber, I think they're just disputing mistakes in your previous posts.

Factory 240gr .44 loads are pretty light, but no one (I hope) is going to go into grizzly country with a cylinder full of cheap plinking ammo. By utilizing Ruger's famous over-engineering, handloaders and companies like Buffalo Bore can produce .44 loads that approach .454 energies. Here's a link (http://www.buffalobore.com/ammunition/default.htm#44P) to the load the OP mentioned - 340gr, 1470 fps, 1649 ft-lbs. Again, not a .454, but much more powerful than you made it seem.

Also, although muzzle energy is a good indicator of a caliber's effectiveness, it is not the only one. There is no one all-encompassing number that shows you a caliber's effectiveness. Penetration and terminal effectiveness are not only governed by energy, but by bullet diameter, bullet construction, sectional density, and momentum, among other variables. The difference between momentum and energy is a very important one. Smitty908 summed it up very well, but here's another way to think about it: You have two choices for a bear defense loads: a .454 pushing a 300gr slug at 1450 fps, or a .22-250 pushing a 60gr slug at 3600fps. Based on muzzle energy alone, it would be a tough choice. The .454 is making 1759 ft-lbs, and the .22-250 is making 1727. The energy equation is highly biased toward velocity, and the resultant number hides the benefit you would be getting with the much larger slug. Momentum can help us quantify this. Momentum and energy do not have a "more means more" relationship. Even though the .454 and .22-250 have roughly equivalent energies, the .454 has by far the most momentum, which results in more penetration. This is the same reason dangerous game calibers push a truly enormous slug at relatively low velocities. Sometimes the weight of the slug is more important. So its not all about energy, nor is it all about momentum, its a combination of many different factors.

bluemalibu
November 13, 2008, 09:56 PM
Dogbite, you'd be welcome at my campfire anytime.

And Irish, thank you so much for taking the time to help point out my flaws...

RandyB
November 13, 2008, 10:31 PM
I personally think that everyone is missing the boat. A .44 vs .454 is a moot point if you can't hit the target. That means the shooter. Som folks would do well to stick with a .44 over a .454 because they can shoot if more accurately and faster. For that matter some folks would be better off with a .357 with an 180 grain bullet. Does anyone recall the story in the last couple of years about the guy fishing in Alaska and putting a brown bear down with a 9mm? Or the guy who chucked a log and killed the black bear in georgia? The question of what can you hit with, can it penetrate to the CNS of a brown bear, and how much gun can the shooter handle, all that precidents over the whole mass/velocity stuff. Please don't take my comments as a personal attack on anyone. Given my choice, if I was in Alaska fishing, I would opt to take my 870 with slugs and purchase a .454 as back up. I would also have the barrel cut to either 4 or 5 inches to make it easier to carry.

The Wiry Irishman
November 14, 2008, 12:22 AM
I personally think that everyone is missing the boat. A .44 vs .454 is a moot point if you can't hit the target. That means the shooter. Som folks would do well to stick with a .44 over a .454 because they can shoot if more accurately and faster.

I was thinking the same thing, but I bet that Buffalo Bore load the OP was considering would be pretty close to a .454 in recoil. I guess just shoot whatever you get until you're confidant in what you can do with it.

S&Wfan
November 14, 2008, 09:16 PM
Bluemalibu is giving great information . . . a 454 on the hip and a slug gun strapped on the shoulder!

The 454 is for if you can't get to the slug gun fast enough!

Good, real world advice.

Me? Down here in Georgia, hunting whitetails, my 44 mag., stoked with 300 grain hardcast lead flatpoints puts 'em in the dirt every time. But on Grizzly bear? I wouldn't bet MY life on it.

Thanks Malibublue, for trying to help the other guy protect HIS life too.

T.

Dogbite
November 15, 2008, 01:01 AM
These are big bear stoppers; 12 gauge pump with slugs. 45-70 with Garrett hammer head loads. 300 win mag and up, loaded heavy. 500 and 460 S&W. 454 Casull. If you cant handle any of those, 44 mag loaded with Garrett loads, and with a very large bear that could be borderline. Any Sourdough walking around in Alaska knows 9mm is a joke for big bears. 357 Mag is not a good idea. A friend of the family that has loads of experience living in the bush unloaded his 30-06 on a big bear and just barely got it before it got him. He made good solid hits, and he told me he would never try that again with a 30-06. I have seen a good size bear take 2 good solid hits from a 300 win mag and survive log enough to be dangerous. Many men have gotten eaten, and they were armed with rifles and actively hunting, at the ready. Let 1500 pounds of bear walk up to you, and tell me you need a 9mm in your hands. Ive been there, and I'm here to tell you that kind of thinking is foolishness.

kgpcr
November 16, 2008, 10:00 AM
I have shot the Buffalo Bore 44mag+P ammo in my 44 and the recoil did not bother me one bit. Not bad at all. I am a big guy and that may help but i was expecting a lot more recoil. I could shoot those all day in my .44 and it would not bother me.

HarleyFixer
November 18, 2008, 04:49 PM
I have never lived in Alaska, but having had a bear encounter in Idaho I can tell you that the more gun the better. My grandfather and I emptied a 7mm Mauser, 30-30 Winchester, .and .38 Special into a Female Black bear before finally dropping her with a .22 Magnum. Luckily one of the .22's went through her eye and killed her because NONE of the other rounds penetrated far enough for a killing shot. Bears are VERY tough game.......go with the 454 and the shotgun or 450 Marlin.

danweasel
November 18, 2008, 05:24 PM
I carry my shotgun full of Brennekkes personally (3500fp and hardcast) but If it was my choice there is no way I would intentionally pass up a .454 for a .44 for griz defense.

You might get 2 shots tops if a bear wants you. More likely one. Alaska is basically a rainforest and you won't have a lot of warning. The first shot, shouldn't matter what size it is, should be on target (in theory) so make it BIG. I shot one of my coworkers raging bull .454 and the recoil isn't too bad really. Of course it had about 8" of barrel on it.

I got the mossberg 'cause it was a helluva lot cheaper than a revolver.

Oh and I hear now that they make .460 rowland coversions for my XD. 13rds of .44ish stuff?

GregGry
November 18, 2008, 05:37 PM
Momentum and energy do not have a "more means more" relationship. Even though the .454 and .22-250 have roughly equivalent energies, the .454 has by far the most momentum, which results in more penetration

With two rounds of identical diameter, just varying weights, the penetration of the heavier bullet should be more then the lighter bullet. However when you compare a bullet that is much thinner in diameter to a larger diameter bullet, both with the same muzzle energy, the thinner bullet could penetrate deeper depending on the material. Of course if you made a bullet the weight of the .22-250's and it had the diameter of a .44/454, it would be a poorer performer then the .44 when it comes to penetration.


I would be happy with a .44mag with hot loaded ammo. As far as the .454casull, you sure can't fault it. If you can control the recoil why not go with it.

ZeBool
November 21, 2008, 12:48 PM
Well, there is the argument that you can load a .44 hot enough to get .454-like perfromance, but once you load a .454 up hot, the .44 won't touch it. However, I believe that .44 mag is more than sufficient for any animal in North America, up to and including coastal grizzlies.

williamthedog
November 21, 2008, 01:01 PM
i own and shoot both.
if i only had time for one shot(which is quite likely if a bear was coming at me)
give me the .454
lots more recoil ,lots more penetration AND bigger bullet!
with a bear coming at you at 30 mph.
there are no follow up shots.
ok everybody can attack me now for stating this.:neener:

Rampant_Colt
November 21, 2008, 06:58 PM
I am going to be buying a new Ruger Redhawk and was thinking about getting a .454 Casull but after looking at the balistics i can get with .44mag i am not sure there is much difference. Buffalo Bore makes a 340grn .44mag at 1475fps. I am not finding much in the Casull that will rival that. Thoughts?
Get the SRH in .454 because it's much more powerful. Period.

Have you checked the price of those BB .44 Mag loads?

saturno_v
November 21, 2008, 11:13 PM
BlueMalibu


Nobody dispute that the 454 is significantly more powerful than the 44 Mag, obviously.

However, I don't know if you are aware that the "big brands" (Federal, Winchester, Remigton, etc..) 44 Mag ammo is quite underloaded compared to the SAAMI specs for the caliber in order to avoid problems (and potential lawsuits) with the new lightweight short barrel 44 Mag handguns. They are more heavy 44 Special than "real" 44 Mag loads.

Buffalo Bore, Double Tap, Grizzly Ammo, Garrett and Corbon all offer full house (means full SAAMI spec for the caliber) 44 Mag loads, for which they clearly warn against the use in lightweight (non steel) short barrel revolvers, and overpressure (some manufacturer call it +P even if such standard doesn't exist for the 44 Mag) loads.

Well all of these brands claim about 1200+ ft/lb for their full house 300 gr+ hardcast .44 loads out of a 6.5 inch barrel.
The overpressure loads can reach 1600+ ft/lb. but these +P heavy loads are only for Rugers, TC Contenders/Encores, Taurus Raging Bull and some Dan Wesson model.

www.dakotaammo.net

http://www.buffalobore.com/

http://www.doubletapammo.com/php/catalog/index.php

http://grizzlycartridge.com

http://www.garrettcartridges.com/products.asp

I personally did talk with the technicians at Garrett and Buffalo Bore and they told me that I can get easily 1400 ft/lb with their standard full house loads with heavy bullets out of the 8 3/8 barrel of my S&W 29 (I cannot use the overpesssure loads in a Mod. 29-2)
As I said, it is not a .454 but these numbers are quite different from the figures you mentioned...again, maybe you didn't know that the regular commercial .44 ammo is significantly and purposely mild.

Garrett claims that their standard pressure hardcast .44 Mag will penetrate a grizzly up to the hips on a frontal shot even when the skull is engaged.


That said...

I never been in Alaska, I never hunted and I saw bears only at the zoo...

However I met quite few old and experienced people (that are into guns and hunting) that live or have lived in Alaska...oil people, fishermen, etc...

Folks that "been there and done that"

Well they told me the following...you are welcome to comment but these are their words and not mine:

1) 44 Mag revolvers with proper loads have been used extensively and effectively in Alaska against grizzlies before the new uber calibers came around and, suddenly, become "almost absolutely needed" in hairy situations....a 44 Mag is not a pop gun even against a bear.

2) For long guns, all you need to defend yourself is a 30-06 class rifle, again with proper bullets/loads or a 12 gauge shotgun stuffed with Brennekes....they told me that charging grizzlies have been taken with a 30-30 lever, very effectively, all the time,especially from the natives...one of the guy, an experienced fisherman and hunter, told me, word for word "It is beyond me to understand why some people feel safe against a grizzly with a .454 but they consider a 30-30 marginal on deer...."

3) In a hairy situation, adrenaline rush more often than not and even a sharpshooter can become a very lousy shot......if you do not place the bullet where it should go, it doesn't matter if you have a .460 Weatherby or a 30-30...you have good chances to become bear food.....one of this guys dropped in an emergency a VERY big grizzly with his Marlin .35 Remington and he's got pics to prove it...on the other end some people died after unloading their .458 Win Mag or other similar cannons on a big brown...again...bullet placement...you hit the enraged critter in the guts or in any non vital spot, it doesn't matter what rifle you have,...you are done...

4) Bears are FAST!!!

5) You should use a gun you are proficient and confident with....if the recoil is excessive or you flinch, you accuracy will be bad and the extra power is not going to do you any good.

6) The "needed" caliber for bear protection and hunting in Alaska, strangely, seems to increase as you get closer to the big cities...maybe they suffer more of "magnumitis" in the metropolitan areas...


Finally....

One of my co-worker is a Russian guy coming from a family of avid hunters, he was born and raised in the Kamchatka peninsula.

He told me (and it is not the first time that I heard it) that even for the big polar bears, in Siberia they often use sporterized Mosin Nagants and they do not feel undergunned a little bit.....they take everything with their 7.62 X 54R (the most popular full power rifle round in Russia)..and no, not many of them die because of insufficient stopping power...


Chuck Hawks in his article "Handguns for protection in the field" writes that the 44 Magnum (full specs loads) is appropriate even against the largest predators

This is what he says about the 357 Magnum:

At very close range a full power .357 Magnum loaded with 158 grain (SD .177) to 180 grain (SD .202) bullets will probably suffice, since the target is the animal's central nervous system. Even one of the great bears can be stopped at close range if the shooter can deliver a .357 bullet to the brain. The biggest advantage of the .357 is that most shooters can shoot it more accurately than the bigger magnums. The brain or spinal cord of even a large bear (the biggest of the big predators) is still a very small mark, requiring precise shot placement.

And this is what he says about the 44 Magnum:

The best choice, for the relatively few shooters who can actually shoot it with the required level of precision, is probably a full power .44 Magnum shooting a 240 grain (SD .185) to 300 grain (SD .232) bullet. The big .44 has proven that it can make an impression on even the largest predators. The Remington 240 grain JSP Express factory load drives its bullet at a MV of 1180 fps and ME of 721 ft. lbs. Even fiercer (at both ends) is the Federal 300 grain CastCore load, with a MV of 1250 fps and ME of 1040 ft. lbs.

Link to the full article:

http://www.chuckhawks.com/protection_field.htm

In the early 60's Robert E. Petersen took a big Polar Bear (1500 pounds) with his 6" .44 Magnum S&W revolver using regular soft point 240 gr Norma loads

http://www.gunsandammomag.com/cs/Satellite/IMO_GA/Story_C/A+Polar+Bear+First?packedargs=pagenum%3D3

saturno_v
November 22, 2008, 06:14 PM
From the Garrett web site Q & A page:


Are our 44 Magnum loads really capable of handling grizzly? The answer is yes, in the hands of a reliable shot. From a comparative point of view, our 44 Magnum Hammerheads provide far more penetration than the 300-grain NosIer Partition fired from the 375 Holland & Holland. Also, both bullets present an extremely blunt front end (meplat). Our 44 bullets also offer far greater security from bullet fracture or deflection than any expanding bullet. Since beginning production in 1988 we have had many customers defend themselves from grizzlies, and always our 44 Magnum ammo has provided super-deep penetration, generally to the hips on a frontally shot bear (even when the skull is engaged.)

Link:

http://www.garrettcartridges.com/q&a.asp

williamthedog
November 22, 2008, 07:58 PM
http://i98.photobucket.com/albums/l272/billhedges/Hunting_Equipment_052707_107.jpg

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