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What's it like to shoot a 45 Long Colt?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by SwordRapier, Apr 2, 2010.

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  1. SwordRapier

    SwordRapier Member

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    I know this is a completely subjective question but what is it like to shoot a .45LC. I've never fired one before and I am tempted to buy one.

    What's the recoil like?

    How does the recoil compare to a target load .38 special?

    How does the recoil compare to a .327 federal Mag?

    How does the recoil compare to .357?

    Why should I buy the .45 Long colt over a .357?

    If I purchase the gun it would be for SASS.

    I'm not entirely sold on SASS so I guess this is a two part question. Are there reasons for or against SASS.

    Boy that sure was a rambling question. Who wrote that junk anyway?

    PS I'm not just tempted to get the gun for SASS I'm also tempted because it's pretty. Ooooh bright shiny revolver.
     
  2. Nasty

    Nasty Member

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    Um...You might give some thought to going to a gun shop with a range and rentals to try some out before buying in to the whole thing.

    Perhaps get some training...and they can also help with the many questions new shooters face.
     
  3. XxWINxX94

    XxWINxX94 Member

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    The recoil really depends on the revolver your looking at. I have cheap .45's that are hell in your hands, but then I've got a couple premium Colt's & Smith's that are really smooth, and don't feel like a .45.

    In general, .357 will be less recoil in almost anything. Both are great calibers, but I have to favor the .45 more because I own more and the cartridge has a deeper history.
     
  4. SwordRapier

    SwordRapier Member

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    Sorry for the confusion.

    I'm not a new shooter. Its just I have no experience with .45LC.
     
  5. Nick5182

    Nick5182 Member

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    To me, a .45 colt out of a SA revolver is about the same as a .357 from the same revolver. The difference is that the .357 has a sharp snap, and the .45 has a nicer, softer, push.

    That's just my impression.
     
  6. Budz

    Budz Member

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    Recoil compared to 357 is very variable with the 45 long colt. Especially for handloading, the 45LC can be loaded with very light hitting cowboy action shooting loads, but also with heavy fast loads that exceed the capabilities of factory 44 magnum ammunition. 45 Long Colt is very versatile if you want to make it that way. There are lever rifles and revolvers to shoot it with, just like 357 and 44mags. I'd say its closer to 44 mag than 357 in terms of power, but it really depends on the ammo. 45 colt can go from rabbit gun to buffalo gun with the switch of a bullet.
     
  7. SwordRapier

    SwordRapier Member

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    Similar then to the difference in the felt recoil of a 9mm vs .40 SW?
     
  8. bluetopper

    bluetopper Member

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    45 Colt loaded to factory specs is very similar in recoil and ballistics to 45acp.

    Yes it CAN be handloaded to 44 mag power but I don't think that is what he's asking.
     
  9. Nick5182

    Nick5182 Member

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    I've never fired a 9mm and .40 out of the same platform. I've fired 9mm out of my Beretta 92fs, and .40 out of my Glock, and between the two, there's really no comparison (obviously more perceived recoil from the .40). If I could fire my G22, then a G17, or my Beretta 92 and a 96, I might be able to comment on that.
     
  10. riddleofsteel

    riddleofsteel Member

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    Like everything else it depends on the gun. My 4 5/8" Ruger Blackhawk shoots regular .45 Colt loads like a pussy cat. I enjoy it as much or more than a .38 special with wad cutters.
    Most of my shooting these days are with "Ruger" loads. 270 grain Lead Head Keith style SWC's over 10.5 grains of Unique. This gives me 1100 FPS and a respectable big bore thump. The hard cast bullet does not give the leading problems associated with soft lead bullets and is suitable for both target and hunting.

    However, I did own a S&W Mountain gun in .45 Colt. The same load was borderline too much in that gun and had a ".357 Mag in an airweight" feel to it.

    My son has a Ruger Blackhawk 7.5" in .45 Colt. My "Ruger" loads in it feel soft and easy to shoot.

    So it is a function of the load and the gun. Overall the .45 Colt is my favorite cartridge for both target and hunting and none of the loads I shoot are abusive.
     
  11. SwordRapier

    SwordRapier Member

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    I understand. I just trying to get wrap my head around what you are saying. I have shot a 9mm out of tanfolgio and a .40 out of a 3" XD. On the whole I like the recoil on the XD better.

    But I guess you really can't compare different platforms in any meaningful way.
     
  12. sig220mw

    sig220mw Member

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    Shooting the 45 colt is a divine experience as is shooting the 44 special.
     
  13. riddleofsteel

    riddleofsteel Member

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    A friend of mine told me years ago; Once you shoot a big bore revolver everything else is just a handgun.

    At that time I was shooting .40 S&W's, 9mm's, .38's, .357 Mags, and .22's in revolvers. My first experience with a big bore was a .41 Magnum in a S&W. Then I bought a .44 Mag in a 629 Classic.

    Later I moved to single actions in .45 Colt and I have never looked back.
     
  14. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

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    Hard to argue with that.
     
  15. Nick5182

    Nick5182 Member

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    No problem, The two revolvers I had experience with were both New Model Vaqueros with 5.5" barrels. What I mean is that the .357 has a noticeable "smack" on the webbing of my hand, while the .45 doesn't. To me, it seemed muzzle rise was equal, it was just the recoil against my hand that was noticeable.
     
  16. bluetopper

    bluetopper Member

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    Yes, from my experience when shooting revolver calibers that begin with a "4" it gets the ole testosterone flowing.
     
  17. SharpsDressedMan

    SharpsDressedMan member

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    It is a euphoric, sensual, and mystical experience. You MUST try it!
     
  18. BCCL

    BCCL Member

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    It's not bad, in similar guns, it's not as sharp (recoil) as a .357.
     
  19. oldgoat46

    oldgoat46 Member

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    Obsession leads to confusion. I have several 45 LC revolvers. single and double action. The nice thing about a 45LC is that in a weapon like the Ruger Redhawk 4" You can shoot cowboy loads for practice and then load it up with the 45 LC buffalo Bore ammo that will push a 260 grain bullet at 1750 fps. thats enough to take down a charging bus. As has been stated the 45 LC is more of a push against your arm rather than the snap of the 357 mag. You recieved the best advice early on. Find a range and rent one. don't know where you live but if you are in Central Fl. catch up with me and I'll let you try all of mine and see which style you prefer. If I could have only one pistol the 45LC is what I would want. Good luck
     
  20. Leaky Waders

    Leaky Waders Member

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    45 Long Colt is very pleasant to shoot in CAS like loads - which, by the way are good enough for self defense loads without shaking your teeth loose.

    45 Long Colt is very easy to reload too.

    I don't SASS, but I do shoot 45 Long Colt. Here's what I have chambered in it...

    [​IMG]
     
  21. Setzer77

    Setzer77 Member

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    I had a Taurus 5.5" SAA type in which I used 250gr slugs running 950ish or so. Recoil on the gun was far from unpleasant, much easier to deal with than a friend's 686 4", and much more fun to shoot. It's a slower push rather than a snap, and the gun just rolls up in your hand rather than straight back. There's something entirely wonderful about loading those big .45 colt rounds in through a loading gate. If you get an SAA type, try to get one with the half-cock loading, it's almost too much fun.

    Crap, now I miss mine.

    PS, if you want HD/SD loads, take a look at buffalo bore's offerings. They're not Ruger/TC only, but they pack a hell of a punch.
     
  22. Elm Creek Smith

    Elm Creek Smith Member

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    The .45 Colt was made for black powder. Shooting 250 grain bullets with compressed 40 grain loads of black powder is nearly a religious experience.

    The .45 goes "boom" more than "bang" or "crack." Recoil is substantial, but "soft" more than "sharp."

    YMMV.

    ECS
     
  23. BCCL

    BCCL Member

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    Hey Leaky, nice setup! What rifle is that?
     
  24. Quoheleth

    Quoheleth Member

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    As much as the cartridge, you also need to keep in mind the gun design. A single action revolve recoils quite differently than a DA revolver. I did not have great success with my Blackhawk in .41, but I shoot my GP100 in .357 quite well.

    +1 to try before you buy.

    Q
     
  25. Leaky Waders

    Leaky Waders Member

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    Heya - it's a beretta/uberti 1873.
     
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