Vaquero .45LC or Super Blackhawk 44 Mag?

Help Support Ruger Forum:

coloradofarmboy

Bearcat
Joined
Aug 22, 2009
Messages
48
Having done a bit of research about getting some heavy loads for my .357 New Vaquero for backup in big game hunting, I began to wonder if I should just consider seeing if I can pick up a pre-2005 Vaquero .45.

Has anyone here hunted with the pre-2005 Vaquero .45 with heavy loads, or should I just get me a new Super Blackhawk .44 mag instead? I guess for that matter, if I am looking for a pre-2005 Vaquero, I could also get a .44 mag...

I know this is probably a question which is down to personal taste and opinion, but I would love to hear opinions as it would help me develop mine (hopefully without spending a lot of money heading in the wrong direction!)

T.I.A.

P.S. - Off topic and outside of this scope of this forum, I have also had a growing interest in obtaining a Marlin .45-70
 

Redstick

Single-Sixer
Joined
Apr 11, 2006
Messages
314
"P.S. - Off topic and outside of this scope of this forum, I have also had a growing interest in obtaining a Marlin .45-70"

Meb'be fergit the Vaquero stuff and go THAT way! A Marlin 1895-GS Stainless Guide Gun and a Stainless Magnum Research BFR in .45-70 make a mighty fine pair of rifle and pistol in the same caliber. Something else for you to consider anyway...
 

coloradofarmboy

Bearcat
Joined
Aug 22, 2009
Messages
48
Redstick":2s3lszgx said:
"A Marlin 1895-GS Stainless Guide Gun and a Stainless Magnum Research BFR in .45-70 make a mighty fine pair of rifle and pistol in the same caliber. Something else for you to consider anyway...

I thought about that, but I'm a bit fond of Ruger and am not too concerned about rifle and pistol in the same caliber, though I read an amazing story about a guy tackling a bear with a .45-70 revolver.
 

pvtschultz

Blackhawk
Joined
Oct 11, 2005
Messages
553
Why not get a 45 Colt Blackhawk? You went from a 45 Colt Vaquero to a 44 Mag SBH and skipped a logical step in my mind. Do you handload? That would be the only reason I'd go to the 44 mag over the 45 Colt is if I didn't handload.
 

Sonnytoo

Blackhawk
Joined
Aug 4, 2007
Messages
631
Redstick A Marlin 1895-GS Stainless Guide Gun [/quote said:
I just traded my NIB .450 Marlin Guide Gun for a .44 RH, and I'm happy. I don't really expect to be able to use the Guide gun for anything here in Florida.
I think the reco to look at a .45 BH is good, particularly the Bisley model for heavier loads to lessen felt recoil.
sonnytoo
 

c.r.

Single-Sixer
Joined
Apr 23, 2008
Messages
436
I recently picked up a 4 5/8 Vaquero in 45 Colt. The gun balances great to me. Must be a combination of the steel grip frame and aluminum ERH. I was not aware the blued/cch Vaqueros had a steel grip frame until I grabbed this one.

I am fortunate in that with my favorite 45Colt load, it shoots as close to point of aim as i could ask.

I personally like the sight picture of the fixed sighted Vaqueros when I'm shooting at paper in normal light.

Now with all that said.
I don't think the fixed sights would be optimum in a hunting situation. It is more difficult to pick up the sights. I wouldn't know what to expect in low light with the fixed sights.

Maybe I just got lucky and my load shoots to point of aim. with adj. sights I wouldn't have to worry about this being a possible problem.

If I was headed into the woods to hunt with a handgun, I'd pick one of my adj. sighted Rugers before I'd choose the Vaquero.

The Vaquero is a great gun, looks great, balances great, fun to shoot, I couldn't be more pleased with my purchase. But it wouldn't be my choice to hunt with.

jmo,
c.r.
 

AzRebel

Single-Sixer
Joined
Apr 24, 2006
Messages
216
Am I the only one who uses an original Vaquero in .45 Colt to hunt?

Folks like the adjustable sights, and I can certainly empathize, but I had the adjustable sight from a SBH go missing on me once.

I adjusted my primary Vaquero to hit POA with my hunting load, and it works just fine. I actually have two, one 4 5/8, and one 5 1/2", and they both shoot to POA with the same load. One I had to adjust, and the other did it right out of the box.

This one sees quite a bit of use, and is slightly customized to fit my needs and desires. I wouldn't trade it for a brand new SBH, but maybe that's just me. It shoots mighty well for me.

WorkhorsePP.jpg
 

two bit okie

Single-Sixer
Joined
Dec 27, 2004
Messages
220
the operational phrase here is backup gun. As a primary hunting gun, I would go with a 7 1/2 an mount a scope on it as the eyes are not what they once were.

However at hard off the muzzel if the beast aint quite dead enough adjustables are not that necessary. If the beast might bite back then I would probably go with the 7 1/2 vaquero with my 318 gr at 1200 fps. Mainly cuz the 4 5/8 have way to much muzzle jump for shots 2 thru 6.

As always in such matters, my opinion and $1.00 will get you a cup of coffee at macdonalds.
 

AzRebel

Single-Sixer
Joined
Apr 24, 2006
Messages
216
two bit okie":33cuqfrv said:
However at hard off the muzzel if the beast aint quite dead enough adjustables are not that necessary. If the beast might bite back then I would probably go with the 7 1/2 vaquero with my 318 gr at 1200 fps. Mainly cuz the 4 5/8 have way to much muzzle jump for shots 2 thru 6.

As always in such matters, my opinion and $1.00 will get you a cup of coffee at macdonalds.

I guess I don't understand why adjustables are so important, even for the first shot? As long as the handgun hits where I aim, sight adjustment is irrelevant.

Heck, even when I use a handgun with adjustable sights, I sight it in for one primary load. When using other loads, I compensate slightly for the different impact, but leave the sight adjustment alone.

Fixed sights are harder to get adjusted to hit POA, but once there you sure don't have to worry about them moving.

Daryl
 

c.r.

Single-Sixer
Joined
Apr 23, 2008
Messages
436
AzRebel":24bqb6l1 said:
I guess I don't understand why adjustables are so important, even for the first shot? As long as the handgun hits where I aim, sight adjustment is irrelevant.

Daryl

for me it is simply sight picture and how easily/quickly I can obtain that sight picture. Adjustable sight do it better for me.

you're correct if I only want to shoot X load and my vaquero is sighted in for X load, and i'm familiar with it, then the vaquero is just as good as a blackhawk........IF.........I feel comfortable with those sights in a hunting situation.

basically just different strokes for different folks. but I think my reasoning is logical. it's not the only way, it's just my way.

~c.r.
 

coloradofarmboy

Bearcat
Joined
Aug 22, 2009
Messages
48
pvtschultz":24xnecx5 said:
Why not get a 45 Colt Blackhawk? You went from a 45 Colt Vaquero to a 44 Mag SBH and skipped a logical step in my mind. Do you handload? That would be the only reason I'd go to the 44 mag over the 45 Colt is if I didn't handload.

I didn't consider the .45 Colt Blackhawk because I assumed it was in the same class as the New Vaquero in that you couldn't use as heavy of loads in it as you could with the pre-2005 .45 Colt Vaquero.

Essentially, I am looking for a heavier shooting platform than the New Vaquero so that I can shoot ammo which will meet specifications legally in Colorado, which is it needs to have at least 550 ft/lbs at 50 yards. The .357 New Vaquero gets above this magic number with Buffalo Bore loads, but it's not ideal... hence the interest in an Old Vaquero .45 loaded with heavy rounds, etc.
 

Rclark

Hunter
Joined
Jan 1, 2009
Messages
3,266
I didn't consider the .45 Colt Blackhawk because I assumed it was in the same class as the Vaquero in that you couldn't use as heavy of loads in it as you could with the pre-2005 .45 Colt Vaquero.
The .45 Colt Blackhawk and Vaquero are in the same class (same gun really... just fixed vs adjustable sights) . Load 'em heavy if desired. Now, the New Vaquero is not. Standard .45 Colt rounds only....
 

coloradofarmboy

Bearcat
Joined
Aug 22, 2009
Messages
48
Rclark":3d1aq0wu said:
The .45 Colt Blackhawk and Vaquero are in the same class (same gun really... just fixed vs adjustable sights) . Load 'em heavy if desired. Now, the New Vaquero is not. Standard .45 Colt rounds only....

Ok, well that is VERY helpful to know. From a strictly caliber point of view (not shooting platform), is there any reason why one should consider the .44 mag? Since reloading is a must, I see no reason why not to shoot the .45LC.
 

c.r.

Single-Sixer
Joined
Apr 23, 2008
Messages
436
here is the way I ultimately look at the 44mag vs 45Colt. I have played devil's advocate before, but here's my personal opinion.

If you do not reload, go with the 44 mag.

Even if you reload and you only buy one of these calibers, IMHO, you'll never miss the other.

I have my favorite, but it's probably only because I bought that caliber before the other and I've spent more time with it.
 

AzRebel

Single-Sixer
Joined
Apr 24, 2006
Messages
216
coloradofarmboy":cyj03y77 said:
Rclark":cyj03y77 said:
The .45 Colt Blackhawk and Vaquero are in the same class (same gun really... just fixed vs adjustable sights) . Load 'em heavy if desired. Now, the New Vaquero is not. Standard .45 Colt rounds only....

Ok, well that is VERY helpful to know. From a strictly caliber point of view (not shooting platform), is there any reason why one should consider the .44 mag? Since reloading is a must, I see no reason why not to shoot the .45LC.

The .44 mag has an advantage for factory loaded hunting ammo being available. There aren't as many available for the .45 Colt, and they're sometimes harder to find.

Like you, I handload, and I shoot .45 Colt. For me, there's no need for a .44 mag.

;)

Daryl
 

Hokie73

Bearcat
Joined
Mar 27, 2008
Messages
39
I have 44 Mag Vaqueros and I carry them afield a lot. One is 6-1/2" and one is 7-1/2" - I agree about the longer barrels being steadier. (and I know 6-1/2" is not standard) I do not like packing guns with adjustable sights because I am always snagging them on something. I have 2 of these and they both shoot to point of aim with heavy loads. As far as between a 44 and a 45, and a Blackhawk/Super Blackhawk and an original Vaquero all you need to do is decide which caliber and fixed or adjustable sights. Any of them will do what you want to do with no problem.
 

Rclark

Hunter
Joined
Jan 1, 2009
Messages
3,266
Since reloading is a must, I see no reason why not to shoot the .45LC.
For me, ... this is true. I do not hunt with a handgun. I used to hunt with an '06. Handguns in the woods for me are 'backup'/'protection'. Therefore either caliber works great at the under 50 (75?) yards scenerios.... I 'prefer' the .45 Colt.... just cause :lol: .

For hunting with a handgun (scoped), the .44mag I think has the edge. Reason being is you can shoot a bullet 'faster' which means it shoots flatter down range ... which also extends its range ( I think this is also what makes the .41mag so popular) . I am with Taffin in thinking the .45 Colt top end is around 1100 fps. The .44mag up around 1300-1500 fps. Pushing the .45 Colt any further and you should either buy a .44mag or .454 Casull.... My two cents....

It's all in how you intend to use them that matters (don't bring a .22 to shoot grizzlies, or a .454 to shoot gophers) ... and preference!
 

AzRebel

Single-Sixer
Joined
Apr 24, 2006
Messages
216
I am with Taffin in thinking the .45 Colt top end is around 1100 fps. The .44mag up around 1300-1500 fps. Pushing the .45 Colt any further and you should either buy a .44mag or .454 Casull.

Cor-Bon loads a 300 gr JSP listed at 1300 fps, and Buffalo Bore loads a 325 gr cast at a bit over 1300 fps. My own handloads push a 300 gr bullet at around 1250 fps. Easy shooting, and perfectly safe in my handguns.

The .45 Colt from a mid-framed Ruger tops out at about 1100 fps, but it can be safely pushed harder than that from a large framed Ruger.
 

METerry

Bearcat
Joined
Feb 6, 2009
Messages
9
Gee guys, I don't know why all the debate and discussion.

The obvious answer is both (44M and larger framed 45). Given enough time, I'm sure I could rationalize ALL THREE ( as in I NEED a smaller framed Vaquero 45).
 

AzRebel

Single-Sixer
Joined
Apr 24, 2006
Messages
216
METerry":1wq12rlg said:
Gee guys, I don't know why all the debate and discussion.

The obvious answer is both (44M and larger framed 45). Given enough time, I'm sure I could rationalize ALL THREE ( as in I NEED a smaller framed Vaquero 45).

I won't get the smaller framed one in .45 Colt for one reason; I load heavy loads for my full sized guns, so I don't want a gun in my house that'll chamber them, but is unable to handle the pressure.

I'd get 'em mixed up, sure as shootin'!

Daryl
 

Latest posts

Top