.454 Casull

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.454 Casull
.454 Casull FMJ (full metal jacket bullet) round
Place of originUnited States
Production history
DesignerDick Casull, Duane Marsh, Jack Fullmer
Parent case.45 Colt
Case typeRimmed straight
Bullet diameter.452 in (11.5 mm)
Land diameter.442 in (11.2 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 length1.383 in (35.1 mm)
Overall length1.77 in (45 mm)
Case capacity45.5 gr H2O (2.95 cm3)
Primer typeBoxer Small rifle
Maximum pressure (SAAMI)65,000 psi (450 MPa)
Maximum CUP50,000[1] CUP
Ballistic performance
Bullet mass/type Velocity Energy
240 gr (16 g) XTP JHP Hornady 1,900 ft/s (580 m/s) 1,923 ft⋅lbf (2,607 J)
300 gr (19 g) XTP JHP Hornady 1,650 ft/s (500 m/s) 1,813 ft⋅lbf (2,458 J)
335 gr (22 g) WFNGC DoubleTap 1,600 ft/s (490 m/s) 1,904 ft⋅lbf (2,581 J)
360 gr (23 g) WFNGC DoubleTap 1,500 ft/s (460 m/s) 1,800 ft⋅lbf (2,400 J)
400 gr (26 g) WFNGC DoubleTap 1,400 ft/s (430 m/s) 1,741 ft⋅lbf (2,360 J)
Test barrel length: 7.5 in
Source(s): Hornady [2] DoubleTap[3]

The .454 Casull (/kəˈsl/)[4] is a firearm cartridge, developed as a wildcat cartridge in 1958 by Dick Casull, Duane Marsh and Jack Fullmer.[5] It was announced in November 1959 by Guns & Ammo magazine. The design is a lengthened and structurally improved .45 Colt case.[5] The wildcat cartridge went mainstream when Freedom Arms brought a single action five-shot revolver chambered in .454 Casull to the retail firearms market in 1983. Ruger followed in 1997, chambering its Super Redhawk in this caliber. Taurus followed with the Raging Bull model in 1998 and the Taurus Raging Judge Magnum in 2010. The .45 Schofield and .45 Colt cartridges can fit into the .454's chambers, but not the other way around because of the lengthened case (very similar to the relationship between .38 Special and .357 Magnum cartridges, as well as the .44 Special and .44 Magnum cartridges).[5]


The .454 Casull was finally commercialized in 1997, when SAAMI published its first standards for the cartridge.[6][7][8] The new Casull round uses a small rifle primer rather than a pistol primer, because it develops extremely high chamber pressures of over 60,000 CUP (copper units of pressure) (410 MPa), and the rifle primer has a significantly stronger CUP than a pistol primer.[9]

The round is one of the most powerful handgun cartridges in production.[5] The .454 Casull generates almost five times the recoil of the .45 Colt, and about 75% more recoil energy than the .44 Magnum.[6] It can deliver a 250 grain (16 g) bullet with a muzzle velocity of over 1,900 feet per second (580 m/s), developing up to 2,000 ft-lb (2.7 kJ) of energy from a handgun. One Buffalo Bore loading drives a heavier, 300 grain, JFN bullet at 1,650 ft/s for 1,813 ft-lb of muzzle energy.[10] The .454 Casull round is primarily intended for hunting medium or large game, metallic silhouette shooting, and bear protection.[11][12]

The Casull cartridges were originally loaded with a triplex load of propellants, which gave progressive burning, aided by the rifle primer ignition, resulting in a progressive acceleration of the bullet as it passed through the barrel.[5]

Similar cartridges[edit]

Left to right: .460 S&W Magnum, .454 Casull, .44 Magnum, .45 ACP, and .22 LR

The first commercially available revolver chambered in .454 Casull was made by Freedom Arms in 1983 as a five-shot single action Model 83 revolver that is capable of firing .45 ACP, .45 Colt and .454 Casull with interchangeable cylinders.[5] The .460 Smith & Wesson Magnum cartridge introduced in 2005 is a lengthened .454 Casull cartridge and has the same diameter as a .45 Colt or .454 Casull. Therefore, revolvers chambered for .460 S&W will also chamber .454 Casull, .45 Colt, and .45 Schofield (.45 Smith & Wesson).[13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "SAAMI pressures from the 2004 SAAM specifications". Leverguns. 2004.
  2. ^ "Hornady". Archived from the original on 2019-07-08. Retrieved 2009-07-29.
  3. ^ "DoubleTap Ammo". Archived from the original on 2009-04-20. Retrieved 2009-07-29.
  4. ^ "Casull pronunciation in German". Retrieved 2019-07-20.
  5. ^ a b c d e f Barnes, Frank C.; Skinner, Stan (October 20, 2009). Cartridges of the World 12th Edition: A Complete and Illustrated Reference for Over 1500 Cartridges. Krause Publications. p. 568. ISBN 978-0-89689-936-0.
  6. ^ a b Chuck Hawks. ".454 Casull". Retrieved 2007-11-14.
  7. ^ ".454 Casull". Archived from the original on 2007-11-06. Retrieved 2007-11-14.
  8. ^ "The Fascinating .454 Casull". 28 March 2018.
  9. ^ Jeffrey Strickland (2013). Handbook of Handguns. p. 50. ISBN 9781300973294.
  10. ^ Buffalo Bore Ammo - .454 Casull Pistol & Handgun Ammo
  11. ^ Mark Hampton (2002). Handgun Hunting: How to Travel the World in Pursuit of Wild Game!. Krause Publications. pp. 11, 125. ISBN 0-87349-364-8.
  12. ^ Robert A. Sadowski (2015). 50 Guns That Changed the World: Iconic Firearms That Altered the Course of History. Skyhorse. ISBN 978-1634504454.
  13. ^ Jay Cassell (2019). Shooter's Bible, 111th Edition. Skyhorse Publishing. ISBN 9781510748149.