.444 Marlin in a 3-inch .454 Casull Cylinder? Expert Opinions Wanted!

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing Forum' started by sgtdraino, Sep 25, 2011.

  1. sgtdraino

    sgtdraino New Member

    Hello! I am not a gunsmith, but am seeking the opinions of experienced gunsmiths on a particular matter:

    Taurus recently introduced the Raging Judge Magnum, a revolver designed to fire .45 Colt, 3" .410 shells, and the 65,000psi .454 Casull. Thus, we have a cylinder capable of handling cartridges that are 3" long, in a pistol that is capable of handling the pressures generated by the mighty .454 Casull. So, this got me thinking...

    According to my research, .454 Casull generates pressures of around 65,000 psi. .444 Marlin only generates pressures around 45,000 psi. I understand that the .444 Marlin casing is basically the same dimensions as a .410 casing, and that some people even make .410 ammo by reloading .444 Marlin casings.


    Do the experts here think that the Raging Judge Magnum should also be able to safely fire .444 Marlin? It's 20,000psi less than .454 Casull, and the cartridge fits the cylinder. Is there some factor that I'm missing? Perhaps due to slight differences in dimensions? Here are the numbers (from wikipedia, except for .410):

    .444 Marlin
    Bullet diameter .429 in (10.9 mm)
    Neck diameter .4530 in (11.51 mm)
    Base diameter .4706 in (11.95 mm)
    Rim diameter .5140 in (13.06 mm)
    Rim thickness .0630 in (1.60 mm)
    Case length 2.250 in (57.2 mm)
    Overall length 2.55 in (65 mm)

    .454 Casull
    Bullet diameter .452 in (11.5 mm)
    Neck diameter .480 in (12.2 mm)
    Base diameter .480 in (12.2 mm)
    Rim diameter .512 in (13.0 mm)
    Rim thickness .057 in (1.4 mm)
    Case length 1.383 in (35.1 mm)
    Overall length 1.77 in (45 mm)

    .45 Colt
    Bullet diameter .454 (lead), .451 (jacketed)
    Neck diameter .480 in (12.2 mm)
    Base diameter .480 in (12.2 mm)
    Rim diameter .512 in (13.0 mm)
    Rim thickness .060 in (1.5 mm)
    Case length 1.285 in (32.6 mm)
    Overall length 1.600 in (40.6 mm)

    .410 Bore
    Rim diameter .533" 13.35 mm
    Head OD 9.4685" head OD 11.91 mm
    Mouth 0.4675-0.4630 11.57-11.87 mm
    Length 2," 2 ½," 3" 51, 64, 76 mm

    Yes, I realize the .444 bullet is slightly smaller, and probably won't engage the rifling very well. I'm not concerned about accuracy, I'm just trying to get a more-or-less definitive ruling on whether or not it would be safe to fire factory-manufactured .444 Marlin in this revolver.

    In terms of answers, I would really appreciate some technical specifics. Something more than "I wouldn't do it," or "It's not a good idea," or "Only shoot what's stamped on the side of the barrel" (which isn't even true, see .357 Magnum), or "Ask Taurus" (duh, of course Taurus is going to CYA and say don't do it).

    IF you believe that .444 Marlin would be unsafe to shoot in this revolver, PLEASE give me some specific, technical reasons why you think it would be unsafe to shoot. If you think it would be safe to shoot, I would also like to hear your technical reasons why.
  2. hiwall

    hiwall Well-Known Member

    The 444 would never reach its max pressure as the bullet would have no resistance in the oversize bore. IMHO

  3. freefall

    freefall New Member

    Why the heck would you want to?
  4. sgtdraino

    sgtdraino New Member

    Safety-wise, is that good or bad? What might the consequences be of the round never reaching its max pressure?

    Put that aside for the moment, please.
  5. Hairtrigger

    Hairtrigger Member


    you could just load a 22 caliber bullet into a 410 shell with no pressure worries if you like bullets rattling down the barrel
  6. sgtdraino

    sgtdraino New Member

    Simply put, the people in question just like firing large cartridges. There's really no other reason. Please don't try to argue the merits of this, I already concede that it is silly.

    Now, back to any specific possible safety issues, please?