Certus ,450-400 Nitro Express

Hi there , Can anyone tell me why the Certus .450-400 cartridge is considered to be different from an ordinary .450-400 Nitro Express cartridge? The only difference i can see is the primer is domed on my one and my .450-400 N.E. are all flat , which to me shouldn’t be enough to give it its own designation .my examples h/s is [top] CERTUS [sides] K C [bottom] .400.M.16.
So its a Kynoch cartridge loaded with cordite . As the cartridge was designed in 1900 for their new long bolt action rifle I cant see why it would have the .M.16. stamped on it .
thanks for your thorts.

I think that C&H introduced their Certus rifle in 1916 and it is just advertising their brand.

That makes sense to me but I’ve read on the net some were they were introduced in 1900 as a propriety cartridge for there new 3 shot bolt action rifles and the magazine rifle actions at the time couldn’t handle the long cartridges untill 1911. also Bill Flemings book gives 1900 as the “date of origin”.
Also 1916 would seem a funny time to be introducing a new sporting rifle

I can’t speak with any sure knowledge about the Certus not being the same as a standard 450/400, but the magazine rifle had adjustable sights were as a double rifle is regulated to shoot to a point a a certain yardage. So it the Certus load is different it may well not shoot in a double rifle.

Does Bill give the Certus loads and are they the same?

Yes Pete , the Certus has 56 grains of cordite and 400 grain bullets
the standard nitro’s have 56 grains [tropical loads] ,57 and 60 grains of cordite / moddite and axite powder and the bullets are 400 down to 300 grains.
Bill lists the same cartridge maker , case length and dimensions, powder type and weight , and bullet weight and style under both listings.

Does anybody have a box of Certus cartridges ? A Certus label would be nice to see.
I have never seen one. Maybe it had just a C&H sticker on the side of a normal production box or
loaded for C&H on the label. I was wrong with my 1916 date after reading information.

It is not a different “caliber” by modern standards, but a proprietary load made specifically for the Certus rifle; the rifle was proof tested for 60 gr Cordite and 400 gr bullet, however.

“M.16” stand for “Model 16” and is the model of the Certus rifle, not the year. You can also find it in the Certus .450 3 1/4" headstamp by Eley.

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The .450 3 1/4" Fede speaks of


Thanks for that. I haven’t got that .450 yet.
I think I will keep it seperated from the others.

Roper, sincerely, good luck with that, as it’s a very hard to find if not rare one.


Attached two pics, -
one of my Certus rifle and a pic of a box.
Sorry box empty I fired the last one off some 40 years ago.


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Hi all, just adding a picture of the 450/400 Certus 3 1/4’:

This is my example same headstamp different projectile

nice looking rifle Jim I believe from what i read that its quite rare and special . Have you seen any others personaly in your travels ?

A great box Jim. Is it a Kynoch or Eley box? Answers the M.16 query too.(As did Fede).
I appreciated the info and cartridge photos. Ron.


I no longer have the box, but I believe it was Kynoch.



Yes it is a rare gun.
Certus was a trade name for Cogswell & Harrison, they made Certus rifles also in other smaller calibers. attached a few more pics of my rifle.

Looks spectacular , and in very nice condition too . it would be a keeper.

Great historical value specimen,congratulations-