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The Big Bore Bulldog--The Great Missing Revolver

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by Cosmoline, May 2, 2005.

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  1. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    I've been hunting for a powerful snub revolver with a short barrel and OAL sufficiently short to fit in a large pocket. The only modern revolvers of this size are .38 Special or smaller. But lo and behold, I suddenly found exactly what I was looking for on Gunbroker. Problem is they stopped making it and the ammo for it a century ago. It's the old .44 Bulldog. The cartridge threw a huge slug at relatively low velocity, offering more than enough power to drop a foe at close range. Why did these wonderful revolvers stop getting made? They are exactly what I need to tote when I'm in the city.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. sarhog

    sarhog Member

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    Charter Arms Bulldog

    Charter Arms makes a snub-nose 44 special. Bulldog
     
  3. GaryP

    GaryP Member

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    If you are interested in .44Spl the Charter Arms Bulldog will fit the bill. I was an Anchorage resident for 15 years (1984 - 1999) and carried one most of the time and still do here in North Carolina. I hope to get out of this Lower 48 rat race and back to Alaska soon -- I will not leave this time! :D


    :evil:
     
  4. P. Plainsman

    P. Plainsman Member

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    Still, Cosmoline is onto an important mystery. The carry-sized five-shot .44 or .45 double action revolver should be much more available than it is. We get dribs and drabs -- the Charter Bulldog, the Taurus 445, the S&W 696 -- and they all develop strong cult followings. Yet you probably could not walk down to your local gun store today and find a single new, well-made "bulldog" on the shelf. Given all the zillions of 1911s out there (same big bore, slow bullet), the lacuna is striking.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2005
  5. Krag

    Krag Member

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    Don't settle for second best. Get a real Webley Bulldog. Hornady is now offering brand new .455 Webley ammo. Ah, shades of Sherlock Holmes, the Kyber Pass, Gordon at Khartoum, Custer at the Little Big Horn............ :eek:
     
  6. Beachcomber

    Beachcomber Member

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    Hell... I have trouble just finding factory .44 special loads locally! :banghead:
    I think I'm going to have to break-down and start reloading.
     
  7. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Yes, I've seen the Charter Arms .44 from time to time and I like them. But it's not exactly pocket size. The grip is almost twice the size of a 19th century Bulldog and the frame is K-frame size or even larger.

    There's a fundamental difference in the design. The old big-bore "Bulldogs" were based off the same frame size that chambered .38 S&W, .32 and other little cartridges. The chambers were larger but the frame remained about the same size, with the classic undersized round butt grip designed not to stick out of a pocket too far.
     
  8. Iggy

    Iggy Member

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    Wonder if some Indian used GAC's Bulldog for a breech clout back up gun? :confused: :rolleyes:
     
  9. P. Plainsman

    P. Plainsman Member

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    I want a "bulldog" for a car and/or house gun.

    The one Charter 2000 Bulldog I handled was very rough. The Taurus .44s look like nice guns, esp. if you find a rare one without porting. The S&W 696, Lew Horton Special, and the like are just plain sweet.
     
  10. OldWolf

    OldWolf Member

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    Will this fit in your pocket? :neener:
    [​IMG]
     
  11. Magnum88C

    Magnum88C Member

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    I don't know man, I've wanted a 5-shot big bore "belly gun" for a long time now. Seems the 696 went out of production about a year before I began my search.
    Heck, I wouldn't mind a 5-shooter in .45 ACP, a little bigger, a little more powerful and a LOT more available than .44 Special.
     
  12. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    LOL That will bust through my pocket, not to mention the damage it will do to my wrist!
     
  13. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

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    Once you've mastered the fundamentals, you'll wonder why you didn't start loading your own years ago.
     
  14. unspellable

    unspellable Member

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    44 5 holers

    I had a copy of the Taurus titanium five hole 44 Special snubby. I rather liked it, but it had a chamber alignment problem. Now if I could just find one with the chambers in the right place...
     
  15. Gary in Pennsylvania

    Gary in Pennsylvania Member

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  16. HiWayMan

    HiWayMan Member

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    Cosmoline-

    That is a beautiful Bulldog. They definately don't make them quite the same anymore. From what I read they used to be very popular, I can see why. I hope you find many more. Good hunting.




    Gary in Pa. -

    That is a nice looking piece. But the damn thing cost $1,295. And it is only a single action. What is the deal with US Firearms?? I'd have to get a second mortgage to afford one of there products.
     
  17. MIkeMSM

    MIkeMSM Member

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    G'Day Guys
    I have a WW2 Bulldog (The low quality type that was dropped in the thousands over Europe during the war) It is missing some parts. I have a full machine shop. Does anybody have an exploded diagram or parts drawings for this era? I guess there were lots of variants.This one is the open the side cover and load the rounds one by one, no swing out cylinder. I would just like to make the little guy complete.
    I also don't intend to load any modern powders in this thing (or shoot it really)as I dont know its history.

    Thanks
    Mike
     
  18. mauser98

    mauser98 Member

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    I have the mod445 in 44special. Is also offered in 45 colt. The 445 weighs 19 oz. empty. My loads are 225 gcswc 17 bhn, 8gr Unique @ measured 830 fps.
    [​IMG]
     
  19. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    Gary, I've seen that snub single action and I like it, though the price is extremely high. I'm not sure why they're marketing it as a pre WWII vintage snub nose, since there are plenty of those still on the market and none of them are ANYTHING like their creation. I'm looking for something like the USFA single action, but in double action.

    Looking back on my firearms over the ages, the closest I came to a Bulldog was the Taurus Model 450 snub nose .45 Colt. That was close to filling the bill.
     
  20. BluesBear

    BluesBear member

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    Most of those old Webley abd British Bulldog revolvers were chambered in .442 not .455.

    CDNN was recently selling the Taurus snubs in .45 acp and .45 Colt as was Davidson's. Sadly the .44 special models are no longer in the Taurus catalogue.
     
  21. unspellable

    unspellable Member

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    Wild notion

    A lot of the old British bulldogs were also chambered for the 44 Webley. I'm not sure what the fine points of distinction were between the 442 and the 44.

    Now for the wild notion:

    How about using the 44 Russian? This would allow a somewhat shorter frame than the 44 Special. In factory loads the 44 Russian just about duplicates the 44 Special ballistics. At present, all the 44 Russian commercial loads that I know of have a round nosed lead bullet and may not be loaded up to full house as they are used for cowboy shooting. So a good defensive load would require hand loading. But if it got popular enough, somebody would come up with a commercial defensive load.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2005
  22. 50 Shooter

    50 Shooter member

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    Just don't go Son of Sam on anyone with that Bulldog. ;)
     
  23. rick_reno

    rick_reno member

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    Oldwolf - do you have one of those Ruger Alaskans? If so, where did you get it and how do you like it? I'm looking for one.

    On that little Bulldog - what's the OAL of the gun?
     
  24. moxie

    moxie Member

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    Have a 15 year old, bought new, Charter Bulldog Pug.

    Works great. It ain't a S&W, but is OK. You wouldn't want a gun much smaller or lighter than that in .44 Special. The Pug barks and bites bad enough! I keep it loaded with Glasers indoors. Outdoors I use Blazer (Speer) 200 GDHP. Nary a problem.
     
  25. foghornl

    foghornl Member

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    I like the looks of that Super Redhawk Alaskan, but just thinking about touching off the 454 Casull rounds in a hand cannon that small...OW! QUIT IT!

    Now loaded up with something a bit hotter than 45 Colt Cowboy Action loads...Now you're talking.,

    I had one of the Charter Bulldog .44's back in the mid-70's. Not a bad shooter, but man, was that .44Spl ammo pricey!
     
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