1911Forum
Forum   Reviews   Rules   Legal   Site Supporters & Donations   Advertise


Go Back   1911Forum > Hardware & Accessories > Ammo Can


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-12-2009, 11:17 PM
gunfu45 gunfu45 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 435
.44 Special vs. .45 ACP




Given the choice of .44 Special or .45 ACP, which would you choose for a revolver platform? I fired .44 Special and .45 ACP and the recoil is comparatively the same. I know the .45 ACP ammo is more easily available. I already shoot that in my 1911. I was checking out the S&W 396 Night Guard and the S&W 325 Night Guard. Both are snubbies (2 1/2) and Im wondering how the slow and heavy bullets will perform out of such short barrels. I would think the bullets wouldn't expand reliably with the slow velocity. Then again the bullets are big to begin with, so perhaps expansion may not be as important?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 01-12-2009, 11:30 PM
RickB's Avatar
RickB RickB is offline
1911 Aficionado
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Seattle, WA, USA
Posts: 17,040
I'm primarily an auto guy, and that may influence my opinion. I don't "get" the .44 Special. I'll take the bigger bullet in a gun the same size. I really like moon clip loading. There are lots more ammo options in .45, and compatibility with the autos I own.
When I last chrono'd 230gr Hyda-shok, it went almost 900fps from 5" auto, 850fps from 3.5", and from a 2.5" revolver, maybe 825? Modern bullets will work under wide variety of conditions, but I'd still trust to placement, and as you recognize, you're not dependent on expansion when the bullet starts at over .45".
__________________
If you're not shooting you should be moving. If you're not moving you should be reloading. If you're not shooting, moving, or reloading, you should be taping or picking brass. - Z.C.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-13-2009, 09:32 AM
mark2734 mark2734 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: California
Posts: 3,797
I'm also mostly a auto shooter. If I had to chose I would go with the .45 auto revolver. You already buy ammo in that caliber, so it would be easier to increase your stock.

Plus, if you reload you would not need new dies and supplies.

Also you have many more choices in .45 auto ammo. .44 Special is hard to find and limited in weights and types.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-13-2009, 10:09 AM
saltydog452 saltydog452 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,319
I've had both and prefer the 44Spcl, especially in a current configuration of a skinny tube, 3" barrel, stuck in a round butt N frame. (see very large wide grin here)

The .45ACP was a 1917 Colt.

Using half moon clips, there was an occasional failure to fire. I suspect that c ould have been due to bent half moon clips. I dunno. The clips were used and maybe about as old as the Colt.

With 45Auto Rim, there were no failures to fire.

At that time, I was loading on a Star progressive and even GI ball ammunition was plentiful. The '17 Colt was a lot of fun.

A couple of 44 Smith and Wessons was more fun. Even if it took more work on a single stage press to get ammunition, the 44s were a hoot to shoot.

I still have the 4" 29 and a newer 3" Lew Horton 44 Spcl.

Maybe the 'handyness' of the .45ACP can be improved by using it in a revolver platform, but I don't see it.

The 45Colt in single action Super Blackhawk five shooters would up the ante considerable though.

salty

Last edited by saltydog452; 01-13-2009 at 10:46 AM.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-14-2009, 01:30 PM
Geezer59 Geezer59 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Wichita, KS
Posts: 384
If you're restricted to factory ammo, go with 45acp: much greater selection at better prices. If you reload, either load is fine - with a slight edge in power (if that's a factor for you) to the .44 Special.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-14-2009, 03:15 PM
pdp pdp is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 396
For a Revolver, .45 ACP or .44 Special...kinda like, a gorgous Blonde and a gorgeous Brunette...

Different, yes...but, either way...


.45 ACP for a Revolver, use full Moon Clips, very elegant...

.44 Special, heir to the repute of .44 Russian, were the premier Target Cartridges of the day...though this is merely ancillary if a short Barrel.


Tough choice..!
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-14-2009, 03:38 PM
Sock Sock is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 873
How about a 329 (.44 mag) with the intent to feed it mostly .44 special?

Five ounces heavier, 3/8" longer, but with a six shot cylinder instead of five. This way if you decide you don't like the .44 special performance out of a short barrel you can bump it up a bit.
__________________
I support the only reasonable restriction of the Second Amendment. After all, who really needs a nuclear weapon?
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-15-2009, 10:31 AM
saltydog452 saltydog452 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,319
Whatever trips your trigger my friend.

I just don't get an ACP in a revolver.

If I remember right, my Colt had a shoulder in the cylinder so I could use ACP ammunition w/o the half moon clip.

The S&W '17 cylinder was bored straight though...had to use clips or AR brass.

As much as I like the 45ACP, it does not make sense in a double action revolver.

MIght be interesting to fool around with though.

As would a Ruger convertable.

salty
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 01-15-2009, 10:33 AM
BillD BillD is online now
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Independence, IN
Age: 59
Posts: 22,566
Quote:
Originally Posted by saltydog452 View Post
Whatever trips your trigger my friend.

I just don't get an ACP in a revolver.

If I remember right, my Colt had a shoulder in the cylinder so I could use ACP ammunition w/o the half moon clip.

As much as I like the 45ACP, it does not make sense in a double action revolver.

salty
You won't find a faster reloading revolver than a 625 with moon clips. They rule in competition. The round is low pressure and the gun is pretty big, thus really low recoil.
__________________
You can make excuses or you can make ready.
Life is too short to buy cheap guns.
USPSA TY41889
NRA Life Member
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-15-2009, 11:11 AM
automan automan is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Alexandria, Virginia
Posts: 1,242
Unlike John Taffin, I see no merit in the .44 Special, especially if you reload and own a .44 magnum. Any 45 acp revolver will do just as nicely as a .44 Special and at a lower cost and greater ammo availability.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 01-15-2009, 11:25 AM
saltydog452 saltydog452 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,319
I dunno Bill,

I kinda got the impression that the flavor of the thread had nothing to do with regimented competition.

As far as utility value is concerned, a revolver utilizing a rimmed cartridge is about as handy and versatile as a pocket.

I had fun with my revolvers...wish I hadn't sold them.

Never competed with one though, so I flat do not know.

I suspect that you're right.

salty
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 01-15-2009, 11:37 AM
saltydog452 saltydog452 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 1,319
Ya'll are making it tough.

I, absolutely, positively, written in granite, know that I'm right.

The OP, if I remember right had to do with 45ACP and 44 Spcl in a revolver.


Formal competition not mentioned. Or 44 Spcl vs 44 Mag.

Unbelievers of 44 Spcls, may you traipse through the forest and frolic in a meadow of Poison Ivy.

see smirk on salty's face.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 01-16-2009, 10:06 AM
Kamerer Kamerer is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Washington State
Posts: 2,930
I am a long time 1911 shooter and fan, and much of that love revolves around the inherent qualities of the .45 acp - good bullet weights, reasonable velocities, etc. But in my wheelguns I like the .44 special, and much is because it has in all respects the same virtues as a caliber. There is a decision tree to go through, however, to make sure it's right for you in a revolver. Many of the points have been hit here, but I'll summarize.

1) Ballistics - they are about the same. Both shoot a similar sized projectile in a similar diameter. .429" vs. .451" is just not that big a deal. In fact, the similarity is what drew me to the .44 Special as a revolver round.

2) Competition? Then the speed reload of a moon clip offers an advantage. The downside of needing to use a moonclip is also offset.

3) Self defense - you can get very, very similar performance with SD rounds out of either. It is not really worth arguing about. It will be slightly harder to find the .44 ammo, but not impossible (e.g, you may have to order it instead of finding it at Wal-Mart - that is just not that hard to do).

4) Plinking/Target/general use - I find the practicality of a rimmed round in a revolver an advantage.

5) Reloading - if you reload, then ammo cost or availability is moot - they cost the same to reload and you can exploit the versatility of the .44 Special.
The variety of bullets for the .44 family (Special and Magnum) is quite large.

6) Versatility - one gun can go from accurate, light .44 Special loads up to serious power - a .44 Magnum is a very versatile gun.

I have a 3" 629 S&W that is just a joy to shoot with .44 Specials, and it rarely sees Magnum-level ammo.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 01-16-2009, 11:35 AM
oldrifleman oldrifleman is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Seattle, Washington
Posts: 288
I love my 625! Full moon clips and Hogue grips and it easily out shoots my 1911s. That said I carry the auto as they are easier to hide. Did I say that love the 625?
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 01-18-2009, 09:58 AM
MSgt Dotson MSgt Dotson is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 7,772
The 325 is an N-Frame, so is a bit bulkier than the 396's L-Frame...

Most .44 Spec factory ammo is fairly week, with a few exceptions from Buffalo Bore, CorBon, perhaps a few others...

Either is capable of fine service, but, I have a hard time choosing an N-Frame for concealment purposes over, for intance, an Officer's ACP of Defender, which holds 2 more rounds and is much smaller, and, in my hands, recoils less....
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 01-18-2009, 10:14 AM
THR-THumper THR-THumper is online now
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sock View Post
How about a 329 (.44 mag) with the intent to feed it mostly .44 special?

Five ounces heavier, 3/8" longer, but with a six shot cylinder instead of five. This way if you decide you don't like the .44 special performance out of a short barrel you can bump it up a bit.
This is the route I followed. I really like my 329 PD. As mentioned before, the edge goes to .44 Spl for a reloader. Don't get me wrong, I load far more .45 ACP than I do .44, but in a revolver, I prefer the .44 Spl.

I'll be the first to admit that full house .44 mags are a handfull in this gun, but hot loaded specials are pussycats.

Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 01-18-2009, 10:18 AM
Handgun Guy Handgun Guy is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,333
The Brunette hands down....

Quote:
Originally Posted by pdp View Post
For a Revolver, .45 ACP or .44 Special...kinda like, a gorgous Blonde and a gorgeous Brunette...

Different, yes...but, either way...


.45 ACP for a Revolver, use full Moon Clips, very elegant...

.44 Special, heir to the repute of .44 Russian, were the premier Target Cartridges of the day...though this is merely ancillary if a short Barrel.


Tough choice..!
__________________
A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government.
~George Washington
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 01-18-2009, 10:22 AM
Handgun Guy Handgun Guy is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,333
Id take the 45 for carry.. Also if im shooting a 44 it will be magnum. My 44 has never had a Special put through it. Dont forget the 44 does not conceal as well.
__________________
A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government.
~George Washington
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 02-01-2009, 09:10 AM
MikeyB MikeyB is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Texas
Posts: 583
I also have both and I'm a sucker for the .44. The .44 Special is a very good cartridge (as Elmer Keith proves). I only run mild factory loads in my S&W Model 21 but run hotter handloads in my S&W 1950 Target. Interesting is when I acquired the 1950 I sold the Model 29. The 1950 just felt better.

I prefer carrying the .44 while hunting than the 1911. For carry concealment a .45 auto (I have a Taurus PT745) is a much better choice. For home defense both are on equal grounds.

But I would love to add a S&W model 25 to my collection.

MikeyB
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 02-17-2009, 09:18 PM
downlow411 downlow411 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Cinci Ohio
Age: 64
Posts: 85
Choices

One of the best pin shooters in my old club, would use a fixed sight SW 44 special, nickel plated. If he was compeating that day almost no one else won.
I wish I had dollar for every time a new shooter would show up and ask who they had to beat, and after learning he shot the revolver with no sights in 44 spl, it would be no match for thier mega dollar pin guns (45 autos).
After the pins hit the ground the mega dollar auto pin guns would quietly pack up and go home, with out the money. He used his own lead cast reloads.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:01 PM.


NOTICE TO USERS OF THIS SITE: By continuing to use this site, you certify that you have read and agree to abide by the Legal Terms of Use. All information, data, text or other materials ("Content") posted to this site by any users are the sole responsibility of those users. 1911Forum does not guarantee the accuracy, integrity, or quality of such Content.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright 2011 1911Forum.com, LLC. All Rights Reserved