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Old June 13, 2016, 01:14 PM   #1
BobWright
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The .45 Xtra Short

I've been playing around with the short .45 case, that I've dubbed the .45 Xtra Short. It's a .45 Colt case cut to .45 ACP length, also know as the "Cowboy Special" among other names. These can be fired in the ACP cylinder of Ruger revolvers. Just for fun, no real place for such stuff.

Here, using a 200 gr. RNFP bullet:



Sort of a fun project.

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Old June 13, 2016, 01:49 PM   #2
eldon519
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Is that the same thing as .45 Autorim?
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Old June 13, 2016, 02:22 PM   #3
kBob
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Nope. .45 AR has a very thick rim to take up the space in an M1917 revolver of either brand and later S&W 25s that would have been taken up by both the rim and the moon clip.

The .45 Colt has a very small and thin rim.

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Old June 13, 2016, 02:38 PM   #4
BobWright
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Exactly a kBob said.

The Ruger Blackhawk .45 with the ACP cylinder cannot take .45 Auto Rim (.45 AR) as the headspace is too tight. Since the Single Action does not require clips, no provision was made for that space with the Ruger. The .45 Xtra Short will chamber and fire in the ACP cylinder, however. Also works in the .45 Colt cylinder. The advantage (real or imagined) of using the ACP cylinder is theoretically better accuracy over the Colt cylinder as the bullet is supported from the case mouth by the chamber throats.

Best reason for existence is the fun of making and shooting the round.

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Old June 13, 2016, 03:41 PM   #5
eldon519
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In a single-action with a .45ACP cylinder, is there any advantage to using these over .45 ACP? Is it just that it will work in either the ACP or Colt cylinder?
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Old June 13, 2016, 03:44 PM   #6
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Interesting, but like you mentioned I really don't see the point in this at all. You've already got a .45 ACP single-action revolver... cutting down .45 Colt cases seems like a gross waste of time. But if it floats your bought, it's cool in my book!
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Old June 13, 2016, 04:12 PM   #7
BobWright
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eldon519 asked:

Quote:
In a single-action with a .45ACP cylinder, is there any advantage to using these over .45 ACP? Is it just that it will work in either the ACP or Colt cylinder?
Probably the only advantage is that it does allow a heavy roll crimp. And case length is not so critical as it headspaces on the rim.


And Colldill observed:

Quote:
Interesting, but like you mentioned I really don't see the point in this at all. You've already got a .45 ACP single-action revolver... cutting down .45 Colt cases seems like a gross waste of time. But if it floats your bought, it's cool in my book

Well, it does salvage split brass that otherwise would be scrapped. In time, the old .45 Colt brass does develope neck splits or cracks.


And, it just provides a cartridge that has an "old timey" look about it much like the old .450s and .455s of long ago.



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Old June 13, 2016, 05:14 PM   #8
eldon519
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It does look kinda neat. Looks a bit like an old Spencer round.
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Old June 13, 2016, 07:04 PM   #9
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Sounds like the .45 Schofield, although it's shorter than that round too.
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Old June 13, 2016, 07:41 PM   #10
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Neat stuff, Bob.

:-)
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Old June 13, 2016, 08:01 PM   #11
savit260
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I would also think that it's a more efficient use of powder in the smaller case vs. a 45 Colt length case. Less powder to get the same performance.

Hodgen shows a 45 Colt starting load for a 200gr cast at 5.9 gr of HP 38 for 761 fps (7 1/2" barrel)

I'd wager that Bob's 45 Xtra short load is going a bit faster with less powder.
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Old June 13, 2016, 08:54 PM   #12
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As I indicated, I threw practicality out the window and just went with the project. And it was fun, interesting, and seems to have paid off.

And if, in my mind failing years, I leave home with a couple of boxes of .45 Xtra Short and without my ACP cylinder, they will still work. And how well, or how badly, remains a future session.

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Old June 13, 2016, 09:01 PM   #13
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I'd love to try some of those. Much better powder burn out of the short cases . I know it takes 9 grains of true blue with a 255 grain bullet in a 45 colt to get the same performance that 7 grains in a 45 ACP case gives with a 255 grain bullet with everything else being equal.

Like I said I would love to try it but I havent seen any of that brass for sale in a long time.
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Old June 14, 2016, 06:18 AM   #14
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kBob

Pretty neat stuff! I even like the look of the slightly stubby .45 Xtra Short round. Thanks for sharing.
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Old June 14, 2016, 06:34 AM   #15
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Total noob posting from me here but could this same principle be used with a 357/38? I like the idea of loading a little cut 38 case just because you can.


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Old June 14, 2016, 09:17 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BobWright View Post
I've been playing around with the short .45 case, that I've dubbed the .45 Xtra Short. It's a .45 Colt case cut to .45 ACP length, also know as the "Cowboy Special" among other names. These can be fired in the ACP cylinder of Ruger revolvers. Just for fun, no real place for such stuff.

Here, using a 200 gr. RNFP bullet:



Sort of a fun project.

Bob Wright
What's old is new again,,,
basically what you made are .455 Webley cartridges without the larger rim.
Years ago I experimented with .45 Colt cases cut to .45 auto rim overall length to shoot in a 1917 S&W.
They worked OK.
Only problem was the lack of case head support in that particular application.
I also found the truncated nose, mild shouldered, cowboy action type bullets to work best in the 1917 Smith as FMJs tended to bounce down the .455" chamber mouths of the chambers and sharp shouldered Keith type semi wadcuttters would spit lead at the forcing cone.
You should not have those issues in the Ruger since, as far as I know, all Ruger .45 chambers are reamed to .452"
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Old June 14, 2016, 08:14 PM   #17
savit260
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Quote:
Total noob posting from me here but could this same principle be used with a 357/38? I like the idea of loading a little cut 38 case just because you can.
Yes, and you don't even have to cut down your own brass as the 38 Long Colt and 38 Shor Colt brass already exists!

I may be mistaken, but don't some competition shooters use moon clipped 38 Short Colt brass as they don't wobble around as much and load faster than the longer brass when doing quick reloads on the clock???
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Old June 14, 2016, 09:20 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bannockburn View Post
kBob

Pretty neat stuff! I even like the look of the slightly stubby .45 Xtra Short round. Thanks for sharing.
I agree!

I'll keep this in mind for when I get the "hots" to form and shoot another custom/wildcat cartridge. A good excuse to buy a Blackhawk convertible.
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Old June 15, 2016, 12:36 AM   #19
midland man
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I wonder if I could use greendot in these cut down cartridges for the 45 shorts?? I have a bunch it plus I load it in 45 colt now!
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Old June 15, 2016, 01:05 PM   #20
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"The .45 Xtra Short will chamber and fire in the ACP cylinder..."

Not in my Ruger. The .45 Colt cylinder has a cutout for the cartridge rim, the .45 ACP cylinder does not, so there is not enough headspace for the .45 Xtra Short. Also, the .45 ACP cylinder ratchet will not clear the .45 Xtra Short rim so the .45 Xtra Short won't even fully seat in the chamber of the .45 ACP cylinder without removing some of the rim or altering the cylinder.

So I fail to see any practical purpose except to make use of .45 Colt cases with splits, and they would be as easily used in the regular .45 Colt cylinder.

Jim
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Old June 15, 2016, 02:25 PM   #21
yugorpk
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Ive got a 45 ACP cylinder in a Colt SAA. Chop the brass ( or get actual 45 Cowboy Special Brass ) and size through a45 ACP die set and it loads just like 45 Colt into the cylinder.
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Old June 15, 2016, 08:50 PM   #22
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Dare I say it?....

Those rounds are CUTE!




Todd.
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Old June 19, 2016, 07:38 PM   #23
midland man
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I like those little rounds they are cute and I would like to learn more about them if the op would share more with me!
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Old June 19, 2016, 11:01 PM   #24
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Nice lookin cartridge.....but how in sam hill does one learn to write that neat?
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Old June 20, 2016, 03:59 PM   #25
Will_G
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This is a dumb question, but how would the ammo at the link posted below compare to the 45 Xtra Short? Could it be used for the same purpose?

http://www.jgsales.com/45hp-not-45ac....-p-92450.html

Thanks, Will
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