New Vaquero Strength.

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Greebe

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 20, 2006
Messages
313
(I know this might be more of a question for the reloading room, but I am more interested in the strength of the New Vaqueros more than getting load info. )

Just curious, what difference in loads does the .45Colt New Vaquero need compared to a Blackhawk? If they need to be lighter, how much lighter are we talking? I don't tend to load my .45Colt Blackhawks too hot, so I didn't know what we are looking at different as far as loads go.

For instance one load that I use in my .45C Acusport is 9-10grs Unique under a 255gr cast lead bullet for putts'n around. Would this be OK in the NV.45C? Or are we talking that the NV is super week and need old Colt SA loads.

Thanks
Greebe
 

gak

Buckeye
Joined
Oct 13, 2007
Messages
1,549
No, not "just for old Colts." Loads ok for current Colt (or USFA or any current Colt clone for that matter) are fine for the New Vaquero. This means the loads also do not need to be limited to "just cowboy loads" either, but regular spec ammo is what it was designed for. "Ruger only" loads are strictly for the larger frame Blackhawk or Vaquero (and Freedom Arms and MAYBE some 5 shot mid-frame conversions...somebody else can weigh in here) and are verboten for the stock NV .45.
 

mattsbox99

Hunter
Joined
Jan 12, 2009
Messages
3,391
Its not like it is going to blow up in your face, but sticking to factory level loads is the safest thing to do. It will also keep you from having to modify the front sight.
 

JimMarch1

Blackhawk
Joined
Feb 19, 2007
Messages
525
The very hottest stuff Buffalo Bore makes in 45LC+P is marked "not for use in the New Vaquero". His wildest ride is a 325gr hardcast doing 1,300fps, blowing past most 44Mag loads in terms of raw energy.

One of those *might* damage a NewVaq45 with one shot.

In 357 the NewVaq can eat all factory ammo, including Buffalo Bore's wildest. The cylinder is beefier in all dimensions than a GP100.

The NewVaq45 cylinder has a teensy bit more "beef" to it than a late-model Colt SAA cylinder. Buffalo Bore has loads rated as compatible with the NewVaq45 that send a 200gr JHP at 1,100fps, or a 255gr hardcast doing 1,000. At around 550ft/lbs energy, those are the wildest loads a NewVaq45 can safely eat.

In 357, a NewVaq can hit 800ft/lbs energy at the muzzle.
 

Aggie01

Blackhawk
Joined
Oct 16, 2008
Messages
968
My new Vaquero eats 9 grains Unique or Herco under a 255 Keith all day long. OAL is as long as will fit in my cylinder. 1.65"-1.66" OAL.
Alliant's website currently shows 9.5 grains as max for both with a speer 250 g LSWC wiith an OAL of 1.6". This data is for SAAMI-spec .45 Colt.
I went up to 9.5 grains with both in initial testing and saw marginal velocity gains and my groups opened up, so I stuck with 9.0 grains.
8.5 grains left my cases sooty.
 

pisgah

Buckeye
Joined
Apr 17, 2006
Messages
1,633
My Uberti Cattleman Flat Top Target thrives on a 255 gr, SWC over 9.2 gr. of Unique. A wonderful working load. I'd bet it would serve as well in a New Vaq.
 

JimMarch1

Blackhawk
Joined
Feb 19, 2007
Messages
525
.45LC Saami Specs.

Wrong.

SAAMI is about 14k psi last I heard. Post-WW2 Colt SAAs and most of the better clones and near-clones (incl. the Ruger NewVaq45) are good to at least 20k. Large-frame Ruger SAs are good to 33k or so - that's the "45LC+P" loads by Buffalo Bore and the like.
 

jimhoff

Bearcat
Joined
Sep 16, 2009
Messages
20
My 50th anniversary 357 and 44 magnums have the same frame as the NV, right? Except the top strap is adjustable sight? Do I have to back off loads from the other bigger 44's and 357's?
 

Boxhead

Blackhawk
Joined
Mar 28, 2004
Messages
867
jimhoff":3hr37e6w said:
My 50th anniversary 357 and 44 magnums have the same frame as the NV, right? Except the top strap is adjustable sight? Do I have to back off loads from the other bigger 44's and 357's?

No. Your 50th 44 Mag is built on the larger Blackhawk frame.
 

Texas Jack Black

Single-Sixer
Joined
Mar 13, 2008
Messages
202
I was asked this question and I had no idea as to the answer. If a Federal 45 shell case is good for 8,000 psi and you put it in a cylinder that is rated for 14,000 is the cylinder now strong enough for 20,000 psi?
I thought the question was very interesting and thought I would ask the folks on this site.


T J B
 

GaryA

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 27, 2001
Messages
230
I always bring this up and have never gotten a completely satisfactory answer (to my way of thinking) but, many, many SAA-sized .45s have been factory-fitted with an auxilary .45 acp cylinder. SAAMI specs for .45 acp in standard pressure is 21,000 psi. I'm not sure why those guns can handle 21,000 psi in .45 acp but only are said to only handle 14,000 (or even no more than 20,000) psi in 45 Colt. One knowledgeable person suggested one possible reason they have not chambered the New Vaquero with dual cylinders is that Ruger's bolt cuts are narrower and deeper than Colt, USFA, or Uberti. Since the bolt cuts are offset, I am not sure this is a factor but it is the most logical response I have encountered.

Since I would love a dual-chambered New Vaquero, I am interested in and mystified by the question.
 

Texas Jack Black

Single-Sixer
Joined
Mar 13, 2008
Messages
202
I have seen many revolvers where the metal is worn clean through in the bolt stops and the guns are still rolling along. I would like to know what the members think about this. I have always questioned the SAAMI 14,000 number as being for the old iron framed Colts and that the 14,000 number is not accurate for the steel guns.Yet we all know how lawyers make money :shock:
 

Boxhead

Blackhawk
Joined
Mar 28, 2004
Messages
867
GaryA":13uotrpa said:
I always bring this up and have never gotten a completely satisfactory answer (to my way of thinking) but, many, many SAA-sized .45s have been factory-fitted with an auxilary .45 acp cylinder. SAAMI specs for .45 acp in standard pressure is 21,000 psi. I'm not sure why those guns can handle 21,000 psi in .45 acp but only are said to only handle 14,000 (or even no more than 20,000) psi in 45 Colt. One knowledgeable person suggested one possible reason they have not chambered the New Vaquero with dual cylinders is that Ruger's bolt cuts are narrower and deeper than Colt, USFA, or Uberti. Since the bolt cuts are offset, I am not sure this is a factor but it is the most logical response I have encountered.

Since I would love a dual-chambered New Vaquero, I am interested in and mystified by the question.

I suspect that part of your answer lies in the fact that Ruger builds their stuff stouter than is necessary for the task at hand utilizing factors of safety greater than other manufacturers do. Brian Pierce did a piece back when the NV 45 Colt came out and indicated that it could very safely be loaded beyond SAAMI specs.
 

Greebe

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 20, 2006
Messages
313
Lots more good answers and questions on this post.

The other question that I have which I asked in my other post but didn't get any answers to was this.

"I was kind of wondering if a 5 shot .45Colt on the smaller frames could be loaded hotter. My only concern about the New Vaquero is accidentally mixing rounds with it from my "Ruger Only" loads for my .45Colt Blackhawks.

From the pictures in Jeff's article, it looks like mostly the thinnest parts of the cylinder wall is between each cartridge and at the bolt stop. If it were 5 shot that would fix that problem."

If my thinking is correct, I would believe that the only real weakness on a New Vaquero would be the cylinder. The frame size difference itself seems negligible, but the cylinder thickness between each cartridge is very thin at the case head.

The other weakness of a 6 shot cylinder is at the bolt stop, which is cut right over the chamber. On a 5 shot cylinder the bolt stop would be moved between the cylinders and there would be considerably more metal between each chamber. This is why all the big bore boomers are made with 5 shot cylinders.

To me this seems like it would allow you to run "Ruger Only" loads safely in a New Vaquero.

Any thoughts on this?

Greebe
 

gak

Buckeye
Joined
Oct 13, 2007
Messages
1,549
I too have been mystified why no dual cylinders on the NVs. A short while ago "even" Colt did a limited-time promo, that optional with your new .45LC would come--at reduced from normal cost--an auxilliary .45 ACP cylinder. I guess stating the obvious, it's either a) slow to market realiziation or some other cost/market factor that escapes us mere mortals or b) something technical along the lines of what's been mentioned. As a marketing gig for current owners, they could even run a "send us your .45 and we'll fit for $____/ minimal cost" and have the shop set up for quick turnaround, specifically with one station that does nothing but (relatively speaking).

About the 5 shots, I believe they are a fairly popular mid frame conversion with the likes of Bowen, Harton, Clements, etc.
 

TiteGroups

Blackhawk
Joined
Dec 23, 2009
Messages
513
Looks like the Ruger manual recommends 45LC. That's 14,000psi. The new vaqueros in .45 Colt have much thinner cylinders than the old vaqueros. I think somewhere in the neighborhood of half. I shoot full power .44 magnums in my old Vaqueros all the time. 36,000psi. The cylinders are the same thickness as my .45LC blackhawk. The .44 magnum was dropped in the New Vaqueros, one reason most likely being the cylinders are too thin to take high pressure loads safely, on a regular basis. High pressure "Ruger Only" .45LC loads are in the same pressure range. Can you get away with shooting higher pressure loads in the .45LC, I'm sure you can. How much and for how long is questionable. I'm not going to suggest to a novice reloader anything outside of the what the factory engineers say is the safe limits. Just set the two revolvers side by side and it will be obvious.
 

GaryA

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 27, 2001
Messages
230
Looks like the Ruger manual recommends 45LC. That's 14,000psi. The new vaqueros in .45 Colt have much thinner cylinders than the old vaqueros.
Without question, you are correct. It is also true that Ruger has not offered the New Vaquero with a .45acp cylinder. However, it is further true that other manufacturers have and do offer such a cylinder in similarly sized firearms, with chamber walls as thin or perhaps thinner than the New Vaquero. How can a .45 acp cylinder be fine for 21,000 psi and the .45 Colt cylinder is limited to 14,000 psi? I do understand that a .45 Colt case is a wee, wee, smidgen larger than a .45 acp case resulting in very slightly thinner cylinder walls. Does that account for a 1/3 reduction in pressure?

I'm not arguing against the 14,000psi limit so much as I'm trying to understand the mechanics in all of this. Obviously the engineers at Colt, USFA and Uberti feel a SAA clone can handle 21,000 psi, at least in .45acp.
 

Texas Jack Black

Single-Sixer
Joined
Mar 13, 2008
Messages
202
Ruger also says no more than 25,000 in the blackhawk yet we see these guns run up to 32,000 Remember the 14,000 number is a SAAMI test done around 1920 on an old iron framed Colt. They never did a retest on todays modern steel guns due to the many old guns available and the cheap imports that were flooding the market years ago. The old number of 14,000 stays with us to prevent those pesky lawyers from taking a bite out of the gun manufactures.
All this has been discussed over and over again. Be safe and use common sense when reloading I have used a load from the Lyman reloading handbook number 45 it lists 10 grains of Unique with a 255 grain bullet as max I used 9.5 grains in my 2nd gen COLT for over 20 years with no ill effects on the gun. This load works in my gun .It may or may not be safe for yours.
 

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