Guns Like firearms themselves, there's a wide variety of opinions on what's the best gun.

.44 v. .45

Old 02-10-2006, 10:33 AM
  #1  
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Default .44 v. .45

I'm looking into purchasing either a .44 or a .45. It would be not only used in home protection for hiking in bear country. So I guess what I am asking is what are the main differences in the two and what would bea better pick. Right now I am leaning more towardsthe .45
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Old 02-10-2006, 01:11 PM
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Default RE: .44 v. .45

i would assume youre talking about the 45 long colt right??? that would make a difference.
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Old 02-10-2006, 07:38 PM
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Default RE: .44 v. .45

I don't have experience with .45. I did own and shoot a Ruger .44 Mag single action many years back. It's a very power handgun. With that particular pistol grip it was near impossible to shoot with a single hand and sometimes with both hands without the hammer coming back and whacking you in the back of your hand. Better get some good ear protection, too. I sometimes carried it in the woods in N.E. MN in case I inadvertantly surprised a black bear. But I never shot anything except paper with it before selling it. So, I can attest to the knockdown factor on big game, as some states will allow.

I think that if I was hiking through areas known for dangerous game, I'd sooner carry a shotgun loaded with slugs and/or 00 buckshot. But between the 2 calibers you mention for such protection I'd choose the caliber that delivers the most force that I could control. .44 is a challenge to control in my opinion with longer time to recover for the next shot. But no doubt some have different views.
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Old 02-10-2006, 07:44 PM
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Default RE: .44 v. .45

A hot loaded 45 Long Colt and a 44 Magnum would be near equal in stopping power. The 45 ACP while a good self defense for human varmits is not a the class with the before mentioned calibers in bear stopping power. Whiole the 12 Ga would be a better choice, its not easy to pack on hiking trips. Conside the Ruger Black Hawk in 45 LC or 44 Mag.
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Old 02-10-2006, 08:00 PM
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Default RE: .44 v. .45

If you have a Redhawk you can pop in stout 45LC loads and "wake it up" for bears. For home defense normal factory 45LC loads are great (basically a duplicate of the .45ACP which is considered among THE finest man stoppers ever created!). I am not really one to recommend over loading 45s though. I think you are better served with a .454 Casull that you can drop 45LCs into for personal protection.

The 44mag is a great big game caliber but far from ideal for home use. The problem with it (or the heavy .45LC loads) are over penetration which could be of concern in the home as you could shoot through an attacker and wound a family member in another room (or if you live in an apartment/condo you could shoot an innocent person which would be DOUBLE LAWSUIT CITY!).

Of only the two you mentioned I would say go with a 4" barreled 44mag. The 4" will pack/conceal easier and is easier to handle quickly in the home as well. For home use I would advise you put .44Special rounds in it. Then it is a GREAT manstopper without as much worry for over penetration. When backpacking stoke it full of quality hunting grade hollowpoints.

Good luck,
RA
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Old 02-10-2006, 10:55 PM
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Default RE: .44 v. .45

You really don't have to over load the 45 Long Colt to get some major thump from it. With 250-260 grain bullets its a heavy hitter without stressing the gun. I have fire hundreds of them in the Blackhawk.
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Old 02-11-2006, 07:01 AM
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Default RE: .44 v. .45

The .44 has a wide variety of bullet weights for off the shelf purchase, from the 44 Spec to the magnum. Without looking, I think the loads I have upstairs run from 185 to 300 grains. I am not handloading these days, so that is a plus. The .45 colt is actually about 1.5 calibers larger; that might make a difference to some but on medium sized perps and game I doubt they could tell the difference. I have owned both and really liked both. I don't feel a need for any more power than my 44 mag RSBH can deliver, and that is what I carry when I worry about getting eaten. However, I have not owned a double action .44. I can't speak to how hard those would be on you. I am not concerned about taking on drug gangs so I stick to my old style six shooter.
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Old 02-11-2006, 11:07 AM
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Default RE: .44 v. .45

I don't mean to sound like I am promoting the 45 LC over the 44 Magnum because the 44 Magnum will always hold the edge in every catagory. However the 45 LC is often overlooked by hunters. One strange thing is that in our state the 357 Mag is legal for deer but the 45 LC is not. This they say is because the 45 LC does not have a factory load rated @ 500 FT lbs of energy. They say that the 357 Mag does. However I have never found that load.
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Old 02-11-2006, 05:12 PM
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Default RE: .44 v. .45

44. Revolver don't jam. 45. pistol does that should be enough right there if your dealing with bears.
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Old 02-11-2006, 07:31 PM
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Default RE: .44 v. .45

I recently shot a 220lb boar with my .45 long colt revolver using 300gn corbon ammo. something like 1100lbs energy and 1300fps at the barrel. I could have put a soda can in his chest. Yes, he was very dead very quick. but most ammo for the .45lc is not this powerful and not very common. When you doget .45 lc ammo that is this powerful youhave to be carful what revolver you put it in. I use large frame rugers.

In reality though, very hot .45 lc ammo is equivilent of your average .44mag ammo, which is very common and don't have to be so carful what you load it in. I myself am looking for a .44mag superblackhawk in stainless and a 7 1/2in barrel. Just a great hunting revolver. There are bigger and more powerful, but how much does guy really need to get the job done.
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