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Thread: 1873 cattleman ammo

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default 1873 cattleman ammo

    Looking for some guidance on choice of .45 LC ammo for my new Uberti 1873 Cattleman. I do not currently load my own and will start out with factory loads. I know most (if not all) of the "cowboy loads" are a good choice for plinking, but I am looking for the hottest factory cartridge that can be SAFELY shot in this gun and would be good choice for hunting / self defense. I have asked Uberti for the design limits on max pressures, etc.........no response. Help?
    Last edited by Big Bullet; 01-11-2009 at 01:24 PM.

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Bullet View Post
    Looking for some guidance on choice of .45 LC ammo for my new Uberti 1873 Cattleman. I do not currently load my own and will start out with factory loads. I know most (if not all) of the "cowboy loads" are a good choice for plinking, but I am looking for the hottest factory cartridge that can be SAFELY shot in this gun and would be good choice for hunting / self defense. I have asked Uberti for the design limits on max pressures, etc.........no response. Help?
    A Single Action Army (SAA) copy isn't the best choice for self defense. It beats throwing rocks but there are MUCH more suitable, more modern designs that are readily available. I, personally, don't see the logic in limiting myself to 5 rounds with no hope of a speedy reload and I've been shooting CAS competatively for over a decade but that's your decision.

    The best two loads I have been able to find for use in my DA S&W in .45 Colt are the Federal 225gr lead semi-wadcutter hollowpoint and the Winchester 225gr Silvertip jacketed hollowpoint. The Federal load actually groups better out of every gun I've shot it out of (and that's around a dozen counting lever action carbines), the sharp semi-wadcutter shoulder on the bullet makes it about useless for a quick reload. It is also unjacketed and made of a very soft alloy so it would likely expand even at the low velocity you'd get from a very short barrelled pistol like a Sheriff's model or Shopkeeper. I'm also a little leery of putting much faith in ANY jacketed hollowpoint expanding reliably if shot from a gun that gives a muzzle velocity under 950-1000fps. The Silvertip is supposed to work but I know the soft lead of the Federal load will work as advertised.

    As for hunting ammunition, it depends on what you are hunting and what your local laws are. Some states have restrictions and a minimum power rating for handgun hunting ammunition along with some states requiring hollowpoints or lead free ammunition. For a bumming around the woods gun or casual carry as a back up while hunting, a 250-255gr lead bullet loaded to 850fps+ will handle things nicely. If you are looking for a pistol to carry in bear country, I think you need more gun. Either way, do NOT shoot the hot '+P+' stuff out of a Uberti and that includes the 'Ruger Only' page in the reloading manuals. Stick with the SAAMI standard prssure stuff. The Buffalo Bore and CorBon hunting ammo is not meant for SAA's or their clones like the Uberti's. The Corbon, Buffalo Bore, ... stuff works at a higher pressure than the standard SAAMI specifications. The SAA design is over 150 years old and, even with modern metallurgy, it is not designed to shoot ammunition producing that kind of pressures. If you want to turbo charge the .45 Colt, you'll need a more robust design than the Cattleman.

  3. #3
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    Well--- I agree that a modern semi auto would be better for self-defense/combat, but for casual carry in the woods and as a "hunting companion" a .45 colt clone accomplishes the same duty in my opinion... it just depends upon what gives you the giggles.

    I like carrying my colt clone in the woods, and five shots before a re-load seems like a lot of firepower to a flintlock shooter like me... Reloading a wheelgun is lightening fast compared to my .58 cal 1740 era smokepole.... so I guess it all depends on your perspective...

  4. #4

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    Ken, I never said semi auto. The choice between a semi auto or a DA wheelgun comes down to personal preference. I just don't see the sense in hogtieing myself intentionally when lives, my own included, will be on the line.

    Personally, I like revolvers better (simpler to use, more accurate as a general rule and far less sensitive to differences in the power of ammunition) but I use both for home defense and concealed carry. I can load a swing out revolver twice or three times as fast as I can shuck 5 empties out and reload a SAA or clone even without using a speed loader. I can also shoot one much faster than a single action without losing any appreciable degree of accuracy with either only one hand or using a more modern two hand techniques. I can reload a semi auto faster than a DA revolver but I'm more accurate with the wheelgun whether it is shot one hand or two, strong hand or weak. If I have to, I know I can reload either design one handed a minute or so faster than I could one of my Uberti clones.

    Please note I separated self defense from hunting/ in the woods carry. That was done intentionally because I consider them two completely separate issues. As a woods gun or backup piece to a long gun while hunting, the cattleman would be fantastic. I use my Uberti built New Thunderer for that purpose if I'm not using an old Brazilian Navy 1917 Smith some previous owner converted to .45 Colt. I also live too far north for gators and too far south for bears, so all I have to be concerned with are feral dogs and pigs. If I was in bear country and had reason to be concerned over them, I think I'd want a more substantial gun and cartridge.
    Last edited by jtg452; 01-14-2009 at 06:19 PM.

  5. #5
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    I agree with you for the most part, hey I am no expert, but I wonder how often in a self defence situation, that more than 5 shots are ever fired? Would a person have a chance to re-load anyway? I dunno.... But you are right, if in that situation, you would not want to be burdened with any kind of limitations thats for sure!

    I prefer to have a baseball bat handy in my home, as my baseball bat is always loaded. But against a gun-wielding creep, a bat aint gonna cut it.

    K

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    4

    Question hornady??

    anybody have any clue when the new 45 COLT 225 GR FTX LEVERevolution
    ammo is supposed to be released?
    what are the ballistics supposed to be like?
    i have seen awsome results with my 35 with
    the same "lever"revolution ammo. looking forward
    to trying it out in my cattleman.

  7. #7
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    Central Calif
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    Hornady website says "coming soon" sounds like interesting stuff. too bad they didnt make it lead-free... It would be nice to have a lead free alternative that will be safe in older or repro guns...

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