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  1. #1
    Bob Wright's Avatar
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    Shorts in Long Chamber

    Not talking about underwear-short versions of cartridges.

    Its generally common knowledge that the .38 Special can be used in .357 Magnum revolvers. But the shorter .45 S&W can be used in the .45 Colt, and .44 Russian can be fired in .44 Specials, both .44 Russian and .44 Specials can be fired in .44 Magnums.

    Why?

    One good reason is that the shorter case offers more positive extraction, especially wioth short barreled guns that might have a shorter ejector throw.
    When Charter first came out with the .44 Special Bulldog I concocted a .44 handload using the .44 Russian case. These were the old balloon head style cases, not the current CAS ammunition. They worked very well in that little gun, and punched out much quicker than .44 Special cases.

    The same is true for some of the little J Framed Smiths in .357 ~ the .38 Specials eject much more smoothly than magnum cases.

    Bob Wright

  2. #2
    logan85's Avatar
    logan85 is offline Junior Member
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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't there a common beliefe that if you use shorter rounds (like a special in a magnum) then after a while a ring of carbon could build up and prevent proper use of full length ammo?

    L J

  3. #3
    OMSBH44 is offline Member
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    It is possible, but only until you clean the carbon (and/or bullet lubricant, if
    you are using cast bullets) out.

  4. #4
    RetiredSwabbie's Avatar
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    Bob,
    Thanks for always giving out good info. I have the Taurus "Judge" .45LC/.410. Am I understanding that I can use .45 S&W, too? If so wouldn't I need "moon clips"? Sorry if I sound so ignorant about such things but "it is what it is". Thanks.

  5. #5
    Bob Wright's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RetiredSwabbie View Post
    Bob,
    Thanks for always giving out good info. I have the Taurus "Judge" .45LC/.410. Am I understanding that I can use .45 S&W, too? If so wouldn't I need "moon clips"? Sorry if I sound so ignorant about such things but "it is what it is". Thanks.

    Yes, the .45 S&W cartridge is essentially a short version of the .45 Colt round. In fact, Colt once prevailed on Peters Cartridge Company to produce the .45 S & W and market, and headstamp the cartridges, as .45 Colt Government. Reminton-UMC marketed some .45 cartridges using the .45 Colt 250 grain bullet loaded in .45 S& W cases and sold these as .45 Colt.

    The original .45 S&W round had a slighter larger diameter rim and a 230 gr. lead bullet. The .45 Colt M1909 had an even larger rim, and could not be loaded in adjacent chambers in a Colt Single Action. Only the New Service could load six round of this.

    And No, the .45 S&W round is rimmed, so clips are not needed.

    Bob Wright

  6. #6
    Bob Wright's Avatar
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    .45 ACP and .45 AR

    O.K. the lesson for today is interchangability of .45 ACP (.45 Automatic) and .45 Auto-Rim, and the use, or lack thereof, of clips.

    There are clips that hold three rounds, half moon clips; clips that hold six rounds, full moon clips, and clips that hold two rounds. So, "clips" is the term.

    The .45 ACP round is rimless, and headspaces on the case mouth. Revolvers were made during World War I to accept .45 ACP ammunition as an expediancy due to the lack of .45 Pistols, the M1911 auto. To allow the use of a rimless cartridge in a multiple ejecting revolver, the half moon clip was invented. Early Colt revolvers were bored through and would not fire the rounds without using the clip. All Smith & Wessons were chambered and would fire the .45 ACP without clips, but ejecting the fired cartridges required a pencil or short stick to poke out the empties. Later model Colts employed this feature. The space between the standing breech and rear of the cylinder was increased to accommodate the clips.

    Around 1920, Peters Cartridge Co. developed the .45 Auto Rim cartridge, a thick rimmed round generally duplicating the dimensions of the .45 ACP, and loaded with a 230 gr lead bullet. So far as I know, this round is no longer made, though brass remains available.

    So, in Colt and Smith & Wesson revolvers, the .45 AR and .45 ACP cartridges are interchangable, though cannot be mixed in the same cylinder, unless three ACP cartridges are loaded with a half-moon clip.

    Now, Ruger introduced a .45 Colt Blackhawk with an optional .45 ACP cylinder. This cylinder is chambered to headspace the .45 ACP on the case mouth, and enclose the case head in the chamber. Since the Ruger uses a rod ejector, no clips are necessary. But, as the case is completely enclosed, the gap between the standing breech and rear of the cylinder will not allow the thick rim of the .45 Auto Rim to chamber and cycle in the gun. So, in the Ruger, and most other single actions, the .45 AR cannot be used, WITHOUT ALTERATION. Some have counterbored the chamber to permit AR use, but the fully supported case head is lost when going back to ACP cartridges.

    The new .45 Cowboy, or .454 Short, are short versions of the .45 Colt round that will chamber and fire in the ACP cylinder.

    Clear?

    Bob Wright

  7. #7
    RetiredSwabbie's Avatar
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    Thanks again, Bob. Maybe Administration can start a "Lesson of the Day" area in this forum for you. Now I have another round to use in the Judge. Nothing like versatility...

  8. #8
    jimg11 is offline Member
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    Short .44 rounds.

    Hi Bob
    Back when I was playing with a Charter Arms .44 Special, I did not have a lot of .44 special brass but I did have an arbor Press and one of the lyman push them in and pull them out .44 special die. I found that I had an almost unlimited supply of brass (45 ACP) that I could force into the die and push out and get the neatest short rounds for the .44 Bull dog. I used a cast 210 gr lead bullet sized.429" in front of 6.0 gr UNIQUE. The rimless .45 brass only resized the case portion in the .450" die so that the rim .474" worked fine in the Charter Arms revolver.
    Last edited by jimg11; 04-03-2007 at 05:04 PM.

  9. #9
    RetiredSwabbie's Avatar
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    Before I forget, any good, affordable sources for .45 S&W Schofield ammo? And what's the feasability of reloading this ammo?

  10. #10
    Bob Wright's Avatar
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    .45 S&w

    The .45 S&W is currently offered by several ammo makers in cowboy loadings as .45 Scholfield. When I was loading this round brass was not available so I used cut down .45 Colt cases.

    But, as to loading, its as practical as any other centerfire round. I had sort of planned on building up a DA Smith into a competition gun in .45 S&W but never got the frame I wanted at the price I wanted.

    Bob Wright

  11. #11
    lowrider is offline Junior Member
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    No 45ACP in the Taurus Judge!!

    You cannot shoot 45ACP in the Taurus Judge!!

    Please, read the manual. It is for 45 long colt only.

    Be careful.

  12. #12
    Bob Wright's Avatar
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    .45 S&W was the question......

    Quote Originally Posted by lowrider View Post
    You cannot shoot 45ACP in the Taurus Judge!!

    Please, read the manual. It is for 45 long colt only.

    Be careful.
    The original question was .45 S&W, not .45 ACP, in the Judge. The .45 S & W will chamber and fire as if it were a .45 Colt cartridge. The .45 S & W is rimmed, and just shorter than the Colt round.

    Bob Wright

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