Box O' Truth #28 - Cowboy Pistols and The
Box O' Truth - Page 1
have had several readers, many from other
countries, ask about how American cowboy
pistols would compare to modern firearms.
Today, we will take a look.
The most common "western" cartridge
would surely be the .45 Long Colt. Many
will say that it ought to be called simply
the ".45 Colt", as there is no
".45 Short Colt". But to distinguish
it from the .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol)
cartridge, I believe the .45 LC is a good
This round was very common, especially after
Sam Colt designed the .45 Colt Peacemaker,
also known as the Colt Army Revolver. It
is said that a cowboy was once asked why
he carried a .45. His answer was, "Because
Sir, Mr. Colt doesn't make a .46."
In those days, the only way to increase
the effectiveness of a pistol was to increase
the diameter of the round and the weight
of the bullet. Black powder would only drive
bullets so fast.
do not have an original example of this
pistol, but I have a couple of nice modern
copies, a Ruger Vaquero and a Beretta Stampede,
both in .45 LC.
They are both great shooters.
Here they are.
let's look at the round. I will first test
a modern example of this round.
It is a Blazer 200 gr, JHP.
We will shoot it into the Waterbox O' Truth.
Here goes out of the Beretta Stampede.
were surprised that it penetrated 4 jugs
and dented the 5th.
That's about 24 inches of water, or 12 inches
of ballistic gelatin.
Plenty to make the 12 inch minimum required.
Here's the spent bullet.
Didn't expand as well as it might should
have, but it sure made the 12 inches of
course, in the old west, the only loads
available were lead bullets.
The most common round was a lead 250 grain
Flat Pointed Round Nose, at about 900 fps.
Let's give that one a try out of the Ruger
were once again surprised that it penetrated
5 jugs and bounced off the sixth, almost
penetrating the sixth jug.
Here it is.
As you can see, it could almost be reloaded
and shot again.