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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I swapped into a nice Freedom Arms 4 3/4 inch at he last gunshow and I was wondering if it would be advisiable to shoot 45LC in the 454 casul. Freedom Arms advises against it because of the powder ring it builds up on the end of the cylinder. A lot of people shoot the 45LC in the 454 casul . I think that as long as you clean it properly after shooting it you would be okay. Anyone had any problems with this happening. I called Freedom arms wanting to see if I could swap the cylinder and maybe pay some boot for a 45LC cylinder but they don't do that but they will gladly sell you a new cylinder for 418 dollars and you have to pay shipping and insurance both ways so it is quite expensive.
 

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The Smith and Wesson owners manual for the 460 cal says you can shoot the shorter cartridges like the 45lc and 454 in the 460 chamber. The manual is available on line as a PDF. But they do say that ANY powder residue in the chamber left after shooting a shorter cartridge WILL put a ring in the chamber. IMHO it's a good practice is to only take one caliber to the range per visit to avoid a mishap that could ruin an excellent gun.
 

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Although it's common practice with to fire .38 Special in a .357 Magnum, and .44 Special in a .44 Magnum, the problem here is one of pressure. The .454 Casull operates at pressures over 60,000 psi compared to 36,000 psi for those "standard" magnums. A light ring of powder residue or bullet lube in the chambers of a .357 or .44 Magnum revolver lead to nothing more than sticky extraction in most cases, but that same ring of residue in a .454 chamber could cause serious problems, although not likely catastophic considering the inherent strength of the Freedom Arms revolvers.

If you do use .45 Colt ammo in that FA, clean the chambers thoroughly before firing .454 Casull loads. If you reload, consider assembling reduced loads in .454 brass.

Roe
 

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The guys that are selling you a $418 cylinder are the same ones that are telling you you can't do something that every other manufacturer tells you you can do. Anyone notice anything wrong with this? Of course you can shoot 45 LC in a 454 and as you said you plan to clean it so you are good.
 

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horseshoe - The guys above have given you the answer. Midway currently indicates they have 454 Casull brass in stock. Load 45 Colt strength loads in the Casull brass. Good luck with your project. Shenandoah
 

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I have a smith and wesson 460 and although the factory specks say that you can shoot all three rounds from that platform, every gunsmith I've talked to about it advises against it. I own a Ruger Bisley in 45 colt, a Redhawk in 454 and like I said before, a Smith in 460 so I just shoot the rounds they were designed for and sleep well for it. (So to speak)
 

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My understanding of this was that it was not only powder, but also lead build-up, especially with "soft" lead bullets often used in .45 colt loads. As Barenjager pointed out, the .454 Casull operates at much higher pressures than the other rounds that were mentioned. That combined with the tighter tolerances of a Freedom Arms could contribute to even higher pressures if there is any residue or lead built up. I agree with the others that you're better off shooting light loads in 454 brass than risking your gun or a possible injury. Hodgdons site lists some loads using Trail Boss powder that would be perfect for plinking.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for all the help. I have 100 rounds of new loaded ammo that came with the pistol but I am not feeling like shooting the full house stuff so I ordered some 454 brass from Midway and some 265 gas checked flat point boolits from cast performance. What I would like is a fairly warm 45LC load using the 454 casul brass. Unique may be the answer. If anyone has a good load using the casul brass holler at me. Thanks again.
 

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I use 6.0gr Titegroup behind a 250gr cast bullet. It is a enjoyable and accurate load but i would not buy that powder again. It is a small plate powder and not easy to meter in my redding powder measue. I have to check every second load manually.
 

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Given that you're talking about one of the strongest and best-engineered revolvers in history, I wouldn't worry about pressure issues in 45 Colt loads at any level a sane person would shoot. The question of shooting shorter rounds in longer chambers keeps coming back up, and so does the simple answer.........clean it thoroughly, and shoot whatever you want.

Personally, I shoot a lot more 38 Specials than I do 357 magnums, especially in my revolvers, and I have several. The simple answer is to take a 357 case, flare the case mouth until it just fits into the charge hole or chamber (where the loaded ammo goes) and shove it all the way in. The case mouth scrapes the ring of crud out, you follow with brushes and patches until it's completely clean, and you stop worrying about it!
 

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It's not the pressure as much as the bullet diameter as I am lead to understand it. The factory loads of the 45 colt are slightly smaller than the 454 Casull and the 45 tends to "rattle down the barrel" I don't hand load On my own yet but I'm looking into it, I talked to one smith that said you can solve the problem by loading 454 rounds in the 45 casing. I'm sure there are a lot of people on This forum that would know more about that and I'd like to hear an informed opinion.
 

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Queequeg, you may want to find another smith. The .454 Casull uses jacketed bullets of .452 diameter, the same size as the modern day .45 Colt. So does the .460 S&W. Bullets designed for one can be used in the other with one caveat. Some of the jacketed bullets that were designed for .45 Colt velocities may have too thin a jacket to withstand the pressures generated by full power loads in the Casull. Very high pressures and/or jacket separation in the barrel may occur. There are plenty of jacketed .452 bullets able to handle the stress of the Casull...or .460 S&W...but if in doubt, contact the bullet manufacturer for their recommendations.

Roe
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
According to the head man at Freedom Arms when th 45LC is fired in the 454 there is a possibility of etching in the cylinder. He says he knows of guns that a steady diet of 45LC's have not etched the cylinder and knows of some that etched the cylinder fairly fast. He states that after firing the powder residue left in the cylinder collects moisture causing the etching. I think that you would be okay if a good cleaning job was done after completion of firing but I will just go with the 454 brass to be on the safe side. When I called Freedom Arms I got a woman on the line and when I asked her about firing the 45LC in the gun she emphatically said NO do not do it.
 

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I'm disappointed that after 16 posts, the thread title hasn't been responded to properly. To the OP: It won't hurt as bad as the 454 :biggrin:


/back to your regularly scheduled posting.
 
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1. You certainly CAN shoot 45LC in a 454 Casull.

2. As has been pointed out, there ARE consequences for doing so. Weighing them against your level of desire to do so is up to you.

I can cheat on my wife too but there are consequences. I choose to operate the way things were designed to operate. Makes for a "more harmonious outcome". But that's just me.
 
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