Author Topic: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?  (Read 6738 times)

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Offline B-dog

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45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« on: October 02, 2009, 01:39:36 am »
I've been thinking about getting a 45 LC Rossi for some time now. Having just read an article by Chuck Hawkes I'm now put of the idea. In the article he states that the 45 cases won't handle more than 2-3 moderate reloads before the case mouth shows signs of splitting he also states the 45 can't be loaded to duplicate 44 magnum performance (safely). I'm now wondering if I'll be better of with a Rossi 44 magnum?
 The loads I had in mind (45 LC) - 300gr XTP hornardy @ 1050 fps close up load for shooting bailed pigs and a 300 sp Speer @ 1500 -1600 fps as a general hunting load. The Rossi I have in mind is the 16" stainless steel model.
 Whats your guys Thoughts? 
 


Offline Bart Solo

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2009, 02:26:59 am »
My first thought was "454 Casull."  Gives you magnum like performance and can be used to shoot 45 LC.  Actually if you are looking for a hunter buy a 44 Magnum. 

I would like to see what Hawkes considers moderate 45 loads, because I get a lot more than 2 or 3 shots out of a 45 case.  Then again I am shooting light cowboy loads.

Online Graybeard

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2009, 04:01:40 am »
Most will probably tell you .45 Colt but personally I'd take the .44 magnum tho I've had a couple of them in .45 Colt and none in .44 magnum. We do have a Marlin .44 magnum and likely some day I'll find a deal on a .44 Mag Rossi and bring it home.


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Offline LONGTOM

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2009, 04:33:12 am »
I think HAWKES is mistaken.
I have loaded 45 colt a lot more than 2 or 3 times and still going.
Some with some pretty hot loads with no problems.
Maybe if loaded to max, but not with standard loads.
The 45 can almost equal the 44 and some say will equal it but I don't push it that far.

I love the 45 but would opt for the 44 only because of a wider choice of factory ammo and a wider selection of bullets if you handload.

I have had limited use with a Rossi and wasn't real impressed with the gun as a whole.
Not bad for the price but would prefer a little nicer gun.


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Offline zoner

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2009, 05:03:29 am »
i've got 45LC cases i've fired 5-6 times with standard loads in my Ruger SA and there's nothing wrong with them...i'll load em again ;)

Offline Blackhawker

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2009, 07:29:38 am »
I've been thinking about getting a 45 LC Rossi for some time now. Having just read an article by Chuck Hawkes I'm now put of the idea. In the article he states that the 45 cases won't handle more than 2-3 moderate reloads before the case mouth shows signs of splitting he also states the 45 can't be loaded to duplicate 44 magnum performance (safely). I'm now wondering if I'll be better of with a Rossi 44 magnum?
 The loads I had in mind (45 LC) - 300gr XTP hornardy @ 1050 fps close up load for shooting bailed pigs and a 300 sp Speer @ 1500 -1600 fps as a general hunting load. The Rossi I have in mind is the 16" stainless steel model.
 Whats your guys Thoughts? 
 

45 Colt brass strength:
I've been loading the same lot of 1500 rounds of brass for about 18 years.  No kidding!  I typically load a medium to heavy loads in them; 250g RNFP cast bullet at about 1050 to 1100 fps from a 7 1/2 inch Blackhawk. (NOTE: these are NOT loads that can be used in a Colt revolver or any other similar revolver....T/C and Ruger Blackhawks only!!

How many times have I loaded this stuff?  Well, in a typical year I shoot about 750 to 1000.  About 10 years ago it was more like 1500 to 2000 per year.  So, on average, I'd say that my brass has been loaded about 8 to 10 times each.  This is nickel plated R-P brass.  I've loaded it so much that a few are starting to show plating wear from polishing. 

How many cracked cases do I get per year?  Probably about five to ten, that's 1/2 to 1 percent.  I'd say that this percentage is typical of any caliber, regardless of the age of the brass.

I don't know why this brass has lasted so long, perhaps the nickel plating, perhaps the powder I've chosen to use develops lower pressures than some of the other choices...???  I don't really know.  To be honest, I'm quite amazed that they've lasted so long.  What I do know is that there are a whole lot of options to be had when loading the 45 Colt as compared to other revolver calibers.  They can be loaded light, heavy, jacketed, cast, and with a whole lot of varying powders; black powder and smokeless.  The 45 Colt can be used for plinking, cowboy shooting, and even the heaviest of hunting applications where many of the other calibers fall short.  If you're a reloader, I would certainly choose the 45 Colt over a 44 magnum.  However, if you're not a reloader, I'd strongly consider the 44 mag if you're looking at hunting with your rifle.  Factory loads of 44 mag ammo are much stronger than the average 45 Colt factory loads and typically, the 44 mag is a little cheaper and probably a little more readily available.
....just my take when comparing the two calibers.

Offline wreckhog

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2009, 10:41:13 am »
When 44 Mag splits you can trim em to Soecials so long as headstamps don't confuse you. Can do the same with any straight wall but then you are off the reservation re starting loads.

Offline mcwoodduck

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2009, 11:05:35 am »
Do you have plans to take up handgun hunting?
if you do....
what ever your choice here will be your choice for a handgun.
why have a 44 rifle and 45 handgun or the other way around.
I really like my 44 pistol.  it can go to and from.
it will do hunting and with hand loads can do target at 44 special / 45 Colt levels.

Offline B-dog

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2009, 03:51:27 pm »
Thanks for your input guys, from whats been posted so far I think I'm better of with the 44 mag. As far as handgun hunting goes- it would be great! Its just allowed here in New Zealand.
 I mainly hunt wild pigs, using dogs. The type of country I hunt is predominently plantation forest filled with heavy undergrowth-blackberry (nasty),fern,gorse (nasty) and scrubby regrowth native (indigenous species). Most shots are measured in feet not yards.

Offline dpe.ahoy

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2009, 04:30:04 pm »
I own both only my 45's are 454 Casull in the Puma's.  In the 45's I load some pretty heavy duty rounds.  I use mostly Starline brass and have loaded some of them 8 times.  My loads are above the normal Ruger/TC level as I run them thru guns built stronger.  The Rossi levers are great little guns and will take the pressure of the 454 Casull with out breaking.  The 92 design is a good one and stronger than my Marlin 1894.  Even at the Ruger/TC level you are getting magnum performance with a larger bullet.  The 44 mag is good, I own 2 revolvers and 2 rifles in that chamber, but the 45 is better in my opinion.  I own 2 revolvers and 4 rifles in the 45/454.  DP
Handi's:22Shot, 22LR, 2-22Mag, 22Hornet, 5-223, 2-357Max, 44 mag, 2-45LC, 7-30 Waters, 7mm-08, 280, 25-06, 30-30, 30-30AI, 444Marlin, 45-70, AND 2-38-55s, 158 Topper 22 Hornet/20ga. combo;  Levers-Marlins:Two 357's, 44 mag, 4-30-30s, RC-Glenfields 36G-30A & XLR, 3-35 Rem, M-375, 2-444P's, 444SS, 308 MX, 338Marlin MXLR, 38-55 CB, 45-70 GS, XS7 22-250 and 7mm08;  BLR's:7mm08, 358Win;  Rossi: 3-357mag, 44mag, 2-454 Casull; Winchesters: 7-30 Waters, 45Colt Trapper; Bolt actions, too many;  22's, way too many.  Who says it's an addiction?

Offline NickSS

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #10 on: October 05, 2009, 01:16:29 pm »
I own both calibers and find little to choose between them if you hand load.  The 45 colt round can be hand loaded to equal a 44 mag in paper power but may have and edge due to larger diameter in hunting.  However,  if you do not reload, I would choose the 44 mag for several reasons.  Among them are more ammo options, more availability in most stores and availability of 44 spl ammo if you want lighter loads for some purposes.

Offline rawhidekid

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #11 on: October 06, 2009, 07:34:46 pm »
I think the Rossi Puma in 454 would fit your needs as well.  You have the 454 if you need it and it will handle the hottest 45 Colt.IMO 8)
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Offline Hank in Indiana

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2009, 07:16:29 am »
Anneal the necks on your brass. It may help.

Offline teddy12b

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #13 on: October 21, 2009, 10:56:44 pm »
My vote is for the 44mag, but I've heard a lot of good talk about the 45.

Offline Bigeasy

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #14 on: October 22, 2009, 01:01:50 am »
Provided Chuck was not over expanding the case mouths when reloading, his rifle may have had a loose chamber; each rifle is different, and that may account for early case mouth splitting.  Annealing might help.

My Marlin is in 44 mag, and I don't know there would be any real difference between it and a 45 LC with similar loads.  Most of my revolvers are 44 mag, as I have never really seen any difference in the field on deer size game compared to a stiff 45 LC load.

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Offline jedman

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #15 on: October 22, 2009, 04:51:54 am »
  B-dog,  I would go with the 44 mag for a couple of reasons, like many have said with the 44 you have a lot better selection of factory ammo at better prices than the hotter loaded 45 LC's.  If your handloading your ammo you can get a 300 gr. XTP in the 44 and get your 1500/1600 FPS velocity with a better SD and BC in that bullet than the 300 XTP in  45 cal.
I also beleive the 44mag case is a better match to the lever guns functioning because it has a much larger rim surface than does the LC.  Plus 44 SPL's are great for most shootin and a little less recoil than  standard 45 LC loads.
I know the 44 mag seams boring to some cause anybody can have a 44 in most any action but really the 44 mag is hard to beat as far as being versatile.                 Jedman
Current handi family,  M-48 12 ga.  M 48 20 ga. M 48 .410 ga. 50-70,45-70 trapdoor H & R,  45 smokeless MZ, 44 spl.,.401 meatmaster( 40 x .410 ), .375 H & R, .357 max, .340 MF ( wildcat ), 8 mm Lebel, .303 OB ( wildcat ), 280 rem., 270 x 57 R, .223 rem.

Offline jlchucker

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #16 on: October 22, 2009, 06:03:01 am »
I'd go for the 44 mag.  I've got two--a Winchester trapper and an EMF Hartford rifle.  Both work fine for general hunting purposes for me.  If I feel I need more power, I'll pick up my 45-70 Marlin.  I use cast bullets in all 3, mostly, and there's a wide selection of molds available for both calibers--for whatever purpose suits you.

Offline Blackhawker

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #17 on: October 23, 2009, 07:44:58 am »
Just a thought here:
The difference we're all talking about here between a heavy load of a 45 Colt and a 44 mag in the rifle is pretty minimal.  I'd say it's just a matter of preference to the buyer.  Buy what you like, don't haggle over little things.  Now if it were a 357 rifle vs one of the others in question, then there would be no argument here...buy the bigger bore.  (not that there is anything wrong with a .357 rifle)
We can all sit here and give tid-bits of info on which is better or which is more desirable, but when it comes down to it, none of us can assist in what or how you will feel, B-dog, when you make your final decision and purchase.  Ultimately, it's your choice and the differences are countless but very minimal and each has small advantages and disadvantages when compared to each other.

B-dog, buy what you feel like buying, either way I'm sure you'll be satisfied.  The reason why there are so many opinions here is because each and every one of us like if not LOVE what we have....both .44's and .45's.  They're both GREAT calibers to work with and a lot of fun to shoot from a levergun!

Offline AtlLaw

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #18 on: October 26, 2009, 01:20:56 pm »
I've been planning on getting a 92 for a long time but could never decide on the caliber, Bbl, length, that sort of stuff.   :-\  But last week I finally decided what caliber and style I want in the one I'll buy!   8)  The rifle model in 44 Mag.!  And Ima fixin to tell ya why!   ;D

Back when I was trying to make the same decision as a factor in the choice between a M-92 and a M-73, Bill (Greybeard) told me words to the effect that if I was going to hot rod the 45 Colt, don't get the Uberty as the Rossi was much stronger.

The issue became moot as I got a good deal on a Uberti M-73 Sporting rifle in 45 Colt.  They don't make it in 44 Mag.; action isn't strong enough...  ;)

Well I absolutely hammered a 6 pt. with it last week using a 250 gr. Hornady FTX, yup, the long flex tip, ahead of 17.5 gr of 2400.  :o  More about that later... with pictures.   ;D

I have decided I really like shooting lever guns and big slow bullets!  So, since I don't have a M-92 and I don't have a rifle in 44 Mag. and I have a rifle in 45 Colt and the 92 is strong enough for me to play around with my warm loads if I want to, my 92 will be a 44 Mag.!    :P


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Offline teddy12b

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #19 on: October 26, 2009, 01:38:02 pm »
You all gotta be careful buying 92's in 44mag.  It's like a sickness that takes over and you can't stop wanting to buy more of them.  My first was two years ago and it's my stainless 92.  Then I came across a steal on gunbroker and picked up an 92 44mag XP (removable tuber follower like a 22lr), and my uncle got so jealous I ended up selling it to him for what I had in it.  That left me back at one 92 and then I see the prices dropping like rocks so I picked up a 92 44mag 24" blued case hardened.  It should be in this week.  For no more than they cost I now have a loner gun for when I take friends/family hunting.  Even though I own one with another on the way I really think I need to buy one more now, a 16" trapper to complete the set.  Something about hunting with a levergun and open sights.

Offline Blackhawker

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #20 on: October 26, 2009, 02:02:19 pm »
Richard, I love the way you put it:
"I have decided I really like shooting lever guns and big slow bullets!"
There is just something really cool about shooting the older calibers.  Slow moving or not, they do the job when needed and can be a lot of fun to load and shoot.  Due to simplicity, they don't cost as much as the newfangled stuff either....to a certain extent anyway.  When you think of it, how many frontiersmen faced large and or dangerous animals not to mention the human foes and somehow they survived with those old BIG SLOW bullets.  I'd say that they experienced WAY more "action" than the huge population of people living today that get a few days a year to hunt or shoot and it was those BIG SLOW bullets that saw them through. 

Waiting to hear more about the 45 Colt and the buck.  The 38-55 too for that matter.  Love to see the pictures when you get them.
Nice huntin'!

Offline AtlLaw

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #21 on: October 26, 2009, 07:53:07 pm »
I picked up a 92 44mag 24" blued case hardened.  It should be in this week.  For no more than they cost...

That's exactly what I want!  you got it cheap?   :o   where! ??? 
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Offline teddy12b

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #22 on: October 27, 2009, 05:59:18 am »
budsgunshop.com

Use the search rifle by caliber.  Select 44mag, then click on the price column to sort by lowest to highest. 


http://www.budsgunshop.com/catalog/product_info.php/products_id/86082


Offline AtlLaw

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #23 on: October 27, 2009, 08:41:15 pm »
Hey Teddy, I wonder why they differentiate between the "Puma" and the "Rossi" lever guns?   :-\  The one review on the one you got says it is made by Rossi, but I wonder if it is the Italian model?
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Offline teddy12b

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #24 on: October 27, 2009, 09:18:18 pm »
I don't really know about the naming stuff, but I know the easiest way to tell the difference between whether you're getting the old manufacturer or the new one is by look at the price.  The new ones are over $500 I think.  They're basically just trying to get rid of the old 92's and once they're gone, they're gone.

Offline timmeakin

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #25 on: November 08, 2009, 03:31:23 am »
My 92 is a 45. I shoot the same 335 grain round (23H110) that I load for the SRH. From the rifle, this 45 round is a ballistic match for the same bullet coming out of a .454 casing (26H110) and a 4 5/8 barrel. I haven't hunted with the carbine, but have great faith because I have seen the SRH results.
If you handload then 45 is the way to go. BTW Double Tap offers heavy ammo "for modern M92s".

Offline AtlLaw

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #26 on: November 09, 2009, 08:53:28 am »
I don't really know about the naming stuff,

I found out!   :D  If the M92 is one of the old ones made by Rossi and imported by Legacy (is that right?  Legacy?) under the name Puma that's what they are marketed as, Pumas.  If it's one of the new rifles made by Rossi it is listed as Rossi.  Simple enough, even for me...

I just hope mine is old enough not to have one of those rediculous safety's on it!   ::)
Richard
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Offline jimster

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #27 on: November 09, 2009, 12:56:31 pm »
Atlaw, you'd be lucky to find one without the safety, hope you do.  I wound up ordering a little plug for my EMF Hartford (Rossi/Brazil) and putting that in place of the safety.  While I was at it I ordered a magazine follower made of steel and tossed the plastic one.  Got both of these parts from "Steve's Gunz" the 92 specialist.  The safety wasn't a big deal really, but it stuck up far enough to where if you wanted to mount certain peep sights, it would be in the way for some of them.  The only good thing I could say about those is they could come in handy when unloading the rifle, but I have not had a problem unloading levers my whole life, just point it at the ground and keep the booger picker away from the trigger.  Also, they painted the letters F and S bright red and green by that safety....scrubbed off the paint with solvent and a nylon brush the first day I got it. 


Offline teddy12b

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #28 on: November 09, 2009, 01:03:48 pm »
My puma 92 like the one you just ordered came with the safety on top.  To me it's not a big deal and it doesn't get in the way for me.

Offline Warhawk

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Re: 45 LC or 44 magnum Rossi lever gun?
« Reply #29 on: November 10, 2009, 10:09:54 pm »
Mr Hawks is mistaken about 45 Colt brass.

I have owned both, and currently own a 44 mag. Not for the reason you might think.

I decided a while back to standardize my calibers, that meant that a couple of .45 Colt guns had to go since I was going to standardize on 44 Mag. My son has a USFA single action in .45 Colt, and I had a Ruger Blackhawk and a Rossi 92 Trapper. I was afraid that some of the heavy handloads might make their way into the USFA. So I shot up all the heavy loads and sold the Rossi and the Blackhawk.  I have several .44 Mag revolvers which was another reason to choose the .44.

My 45 Rossi was a blue trapper (16 inch barrel). It was a very good shooter, my aging eyes were the limiting factor but I shot some 2 inch groups at 50 yards with it, which for me is incredible. Recoil was pretty stout with heavy loads, and point of impact varied quite a bit with different bullet weights.  It shot cast bullets as well or better than jacketed.

The 44 Rossi is not without it's flaws. Many of these showed up with oversize bores, which I'm told was taken care of sometime in 2006. Also, they have a 1:38 twist barrel (1:20 for the .45) which makes them marginal for shooting heavy bullets.  The twist rate problem also affects Marlin 44's.

I currently have a stainless Rossi trapper in 44 Mag that has been slicked up and the safety removed, by Steve Young www.stevesgunz.com  I have only had it a short time and have not had it to the range yet.

Depending on your intended use, you might also consider the .357 levergun.  The 357 gains much more in a rifle than either the 44 mag or 45 Colt. If you handload, a 357 carbine with 180 grain cast lead bullets is an impressive gun, almost as powerful as a .30-30 but with a .35 caliber bullet. The 357 in carbine has very mild recoil.