#1

Ron

I was editing my post as you were typing yours. How do you catalog those two cartridges with the same headstamp but different lengths? Have you seen a box for the short ones? I call the short one the 45 Colt Government but can’t really recall where I got that name.

Ray


#2

Ray–For the purposes of my collection I catalog the shorter case rounds with “.45 COLT” headstamp as “.45 Smith & Wesson, Schofield” and the military rounds are cataloged as “Cal. 45 Ball, Schofield”

For what it is worth, U.M.C. used 3 different names for the .45 Colt. in their catalogs: .45 COLT’S, .45 COLT’S U.S.A. and used the plain .45 COLT only for the blank load.

U.M.C. always used .45 SMITH & WESSON for the Schofield length cartridge in the catalogs…


#3

Ray,
That short version of the REM-UMC 45 COLT is the .45 S&W Schofield, which came to be referred to by the ammunition makers as the .45 Colt Government, and replaced the .45 (Long) Colt as the standard government revolver cartridge.


#4

So, why are the dimensions (rim diameter)different than the UMC 45 S&W?? By the time the REM-UMC cartridge came out (1912) the US Govt had already adopted the 45 ACP as the standard.

Now I remember why I don’t collect headstamps or handgun cartridges.

Ray


#5

I believe the rim diameter of your REM-UMC 45 COLT should be around .505", which is the same as the .45 (Long) Colt, and that on the UMC 45 S&W is about .520", which seems to conform with the Frankford Arsenal produced versions. I haven’t a clue why this is, but they are otherwise the same cartridge. To add to the confusion, Peters produced a version with the headstamp PETERS .45 C GOVT.


#6

Guy

You’re right. Those are the dimensions on mine also. The rim on the original (1875 - 1895) 45 S&W cartridges, as issued, is .512 to .513. Which only adds to the confusion. I would guess that it all has to do with being able to use the “short” REM-UMC cartridges in the Colt SA because of it’s smaller diameter cylinder. Evidence from the Little Big Horn confirms that the issue cartridges fit quite well.

Ron - I’ll keep my eyes open for boxes or photos of same.

Ray


#7

In the beginning…
Colt SAA (Model 1873 Single Action Army) revolver in .45 caliber was adopted by U.S. Army in 1873.

Shortly thereafter, the S&W Schofield was also adopted by U.S. Army, and while Schofield ammo would work in the Colt, the opposite was not possbile (due to shorter length of S&W cylinder as I recall). Hence the Army decided to adopt the shorter S&W style round so it could be used in both types, simplifying logistics. Apparently this short length was military standard until the SAA was finally withdrawn from service (even though the S&W had been retired after only a few y ears in service.

Dissatisfaction with the puny stopping power of the .38 caliber revolvers (Colt made Models 1892-1903 series, mainly) led to the adoption of the .45 caliber Model 1909 revolver (basically the Colt New Service Model). With no S&W Schofields around to complicate things, the .45 caliber revolver cartridge Model of 1909 was adopted to go with the 1909 revolvers, and I believe these used the “normal” commercial length cases, not the previous military dual purpose “shorter” case.

THe Model 1909 revolver remained in use for many years after adoption of the Model 1911 .45 automatic, as it took a while to procure enough to meet all the needs of active and reserve forces, and older arms tended to be kept for war reserve stocks even when obsolescent.


#8

John–The Model 1909 and the .45 Colt will not interchange in the older SAA as full loads of 6 rounds because the rim of the Model 1909 is 0.030 inch larger. Thus, to use the Model 1909 in the old SAA, only 3 rounds can be loaded due to rim overlap.


#9

Ron

If you have, or get, a box from those REM-UMC 45 COLT cartridges, could you post a photo of it? I am not yet convinced as to exactly what they are and only a box label is proof positive. I would think that box is very uncommon and not found in many collections.

Ray


#10

Ray–While I have quite a number of variations of the cartridge (short case headstamped .45 Colt), I have never seen a box for them. I certainly will post it if I do get a box or scan for them.

So far it doesn’t seem ANYONE has any .45 Colt boxes. At least I have not received any response so far.


#11

All you say is very confusing me.
For me we have :

  1. 45 Colt adopted in 1873 :
    It is alsways a Benet primer case.
    This ctge was designed for the Colt 1873 revolver
  2. 45 S&W Schoffield adopted in 1874
    It is alsways a Benet primer case.
    The case is shorter.
    This ctge was designed for both revolvers : Colt 1873 and S&W 1874
  3. 45 Colt model of 1882:
    It is a boxer case, same length
  4. 45 Model of 1909:
    It is a boxer case, longer

Questions now :

  1. model 1882 is a 45 S&W Schoffield. Yes or no ?
  2. which one do you call 45 long colt ?
    Thanks

#12

JP–Here is a chronological list of all the U.S. Military .45 caliber REVOLVER cartridges. As far as I know, these are the proper names for each of the rounds.

BALL

  1. CAL.45, BALL, COLT LENGTH (1.26 INCHES), BENET PRIMED (1873-1882)

  2. CAL.45, BALL, SCHOFIELD LENGTH (1.10 INCHES), BENET PRIMED (1874-1882)

  3. CAL.45, BALL, SCHOFIELD, BOXER PRIMED, MODEL 1882 (0.525 RIM); COPPER CASE (1882-1887)

  4. CAL.45, BALL, SCHOFIELD, BOXER PRIMED, MODEL 1882 (0.513 RIM); COPPER CASE (1887-1890)

  5. CAL.45, BALL, SCHOFIELD, BOXER PRIMED, MODEL 1882; (0.513 RIM); TINNED CASE (1890-1900)

  6. CAL.45, BALL, SCHOFIELD, BOXER PRIMED, MODEL 1882; (0.513 RIM); BRASS CASE (1900-1908)

  7. CAL…45, BALL, REVOLVER, MODEL 1906 (1906)

  8. CAL…45, BALL, REVOLVER, PROTOTYPE (DEC 1908)

  9. CAL…45, BALL, REVOLVER, MODEL 1909 (RIM 0.523-0.527) (JAN 1909-APR 1909)

  10. CAL…45, BALL, REVOLVER, MODEL 1909 (RIM 0.536-0.540) (APR 1909-APR 1915)

BLANK

  1. CAL.45, BLANK, SCHOFIELD LENGTH (1.07 INCHES), BENET PRIMED (1873-1880)

  2. CAL.45, BLANK, SCHOFIELD, BOXER PRIMED, MODEL 1882 (0.525 RIM); COPPER CASE (1880-1887)

  3. CAL.45, BLANK, SCHOFIELD, BOXER PRIMED, MODEL 1882 (0.513 RIM); COPPER CASE (1887-1890)

  4. CAL.45, BLANK, SCHOFIELD, BOXER PRIMED, MODEL 1882; (0.513 RIM); BRASS CASE (1890-1908)

  5. CAL…45, BLANK, REVOLVER, MODEL 1909 (JUN 1909-DEC 1909)

  6. CAL…45, BLANK, REVOLVER, MODEL 1910 (NOV 1909-APR 1915)

  7. CAL…45, BLANK, REVOLVER, MODEL 1925 (JUN 1925)

  8. CAL…45, BLANK, REVOLVER, M1 (CASE LENGTH 0.860 INCH) (CASE MOUTH 0.250 INCH) (JUL 1925-OCT 1926)

  9. CAL…45, BLANK, REVOLVER, M1 REVISION 1 (CASE LENGTH 0.860 INCH) (CASE MOUTH 0.312 INCH) (NOV 1926-)

  10. CAL…45, BLANK, REVOLVER, M1 REVISION 2 (CASE LENGTH 0.870 INCH) (CASE MOUTH 0.312 INCH) (AFTER 1926-)

  11. CAL…45, BLANK, REVOLVER, M1 REVISION 3 (CASE LENGTH 0.880 INCH) (CASE MOUTH 0.312 INCH) (NOV 1937-1939)

  12. CAL…45, BLANK, PYROTECHNIC, T2 (1936-1938)

  13. CAL…45, BLANK, PYROTECHNIC, T2-E1 (1938-1939)

MULTI-BALL

  1. CAL…45, MULTI-BALL, REVOLVER (EXPERIMENTAL) (1879)

  2. CAL…45, MULTI-BALL, REVOLVER, ANDERSON DIVIDED BULLET (EXPERIMENTAL) (1889)


#13

thanks
you confirm the modele 1882 is a sw schofield.
but is the one you call 45 long colt ?
jp


#14

Ron, here’s the cartridge pics. Nickel case, no cannelure, flat brass primer. I can either post the box pics here or e-mail them to you, whichever you prefer.


#15

JP,
The .45 ‘Long’ Colt is the name that has been used for the original .45 Colt cartridge to distinguish it from the shorter .45 Schofield. Remington-UMC and Winchester apparetly used the same headstamp bunters for the two cartridges (REM-UMC 45 COLT and W.R.A.Co. .45 COLT), although both companies also made the Schofield cartridge with the ‘correct’ headstamps (REM-UMC 45 S&W and W.R.A.Co. 45 S&W.); I suspect these headstamps were used on the earlier production cartridges.


#16

[quote=“Guy Hildebrand”]JP,
The .45 ‘Long’ Colt is the name that has been used for the original .45 Colt cartridge to distinguish it from the shorter .45 Schofield. .[/quote]

Thanks
If I understand well what you say:
45 Colt is the one designed in 1873.
And it is either with Benet primer if military either with brass case if commercial.
And from the others posts it cannot be the 45 Colt Mod 1909 !

This looks stange.
JP


#17

JP-The .45 Colt (.45 Long Colt) and the the .45 Colt Model 1909 are 2 different cartridges. The major difference is the rim diameter. The standard .45 Colt rim is, depending on the era and manufacture is 0.499 to 0.524. The Model 1909 rim is .0.536-0.540 and is somewhat thicker. If you try to chamber 6 rounds in a standard SAA revolver, the rims of the Model 1909 cartridges overlap, preventing there use. This was done on purpose by Frankford Arsenal to prevent the stronger Model 1909 cartridges from being used in any revolver except the Colt New Service Army Model 1909 Revolver.


#18

JP–To further clarify things, Frankford Arsenal only made the .45 Colt length case (1.26 inches) for a short period of time from 1873 to 1882 and ONLY in a gilding metal case with Benet priming. They never made it with a Boxer primer.

After 1874, the Benet primed .45 Schofield length (1.10 inches) was the Frankford Arsenal standard loading until the Boxer primed Model 1882 was introduced.

However, ALL commercial production of the .45 Colt (1.26 inch case) by U.M.C. & W.R.A.Co. was external primed centerfire and brass cased. U.M.C. first loaded it in 1873 and W.R.A.Co. in 1876.


#19

Ron

I’m curious as to where you found a reference calling the shorter rounds “CAL.45, BALL, SCHOFIELD”. Every box that I have owned or seen calls them “REVOLVER BALL CARTRIDGES, CALIBRE .45” with no reference to Schofield or S&W.

And are you positive that the M1909 cartridges are loaded to higher pressure? It was always my understanding that the larger rim was to facilitate their use in the new hand-ejector revolver, not necessarily to prevent their use in the older SAA.

Ray

Ray


#20

Ray and Ron - according to Volume I of Hackley, Woodin and Scranton, you are both right. The first Model 1909 cartridges would work in both Single and Double-Action revolvers. The Official name was “Cal. .45 Revolver Ball Cartridge Model of 1909 for Single and Double Action Revolvers.” The rim was enlarged in diameter and thickness as an aid to extraction in the double-action revolvers.

In March of 1909, the Frankford Arsenal Drawing was changed and almost the entire cartridge revised. It was then officially called "Cal…45 Revolver Ball Cartridge Model of 1909 for Colt’s Double Action Revolver Model 1909. The rim was enlarged even more to prevent the cartridge from being used with the single-action revolvers. The powder charge was also increased. Most of the military .45 Single-Action Army Colts were of the black-powder frame type, so I am sure this was also a reason that the revised, increased power, Model 1909 rounds were made so they would not fit in the SAA.

John Moss, courtesty of Hackley, Woodin and Scranto.